Newsletter Archives > ChiroPlanet.com Monthly Health Newsletter: March 2010 Health Newsletter

March 2010 Health Newsletter


Current Articles

» Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?
» Benefits of Cold Laser Therapy
» Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
» Foot-Body Connection
» Headaches & Migraines
» Chiropractic Included At Vancouver Winter Olympic Games
» College Students At Risk For Back Pain
» Study Expert Validates Chiropractic Standard of Care
» U.S. Hospital Infections - A Serious Killer

Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?

 

Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?

 

With all the news today about the flu and especially the Swine Flu, people everywhere are wondering whether to get a flu shot or not.  They wonder if they have other options to help prevent them from losing work or being out of commission from sports or child care this winter.  Has anyone considered chiropractic care as a preventative method?

 

When we are sick our immune system goes to work to fight off the offending virus or bacteria.  It also works to prevent us from getting sick in the first place.  Statistics show that those who receive chiropractic adjustment at least once a week kick their immune system into overdrive.  It can increase the function of their immune system by up to 400%. 

 

Chiropractic adjustments remove irritation in the nerves which are the pathway of information from our brain to our body.  If the pathway gets blocked or congested, the flow of information is slowed down or interrupted.  Symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, back pain, neck pain and more result from impaired nerve function.  When the doctor adjusts the body, he removed the irritation and restores the flow of information resulting in symptoms diminishing or disappearing entirely. 

 

While most people who visit the chiropractor do so in a reactive way as a result of an injury, headaches, and unexplained back pain, leg pain or neck pain.  What people do not realize is that aside from a known injury that caused the pain, other pains can often be caused by irritations that come from stress, viruses, bacteria and a variety of other causes.  A good way to be proactive is to visit a chiropractor during the winter months.

 

Frequent adjustments will keep the pathway clear and nerves in optimal health.  This increases the immune function and wards off any threatening bacteria or virus.  While you won't really know if it worked, you would get the same result with a flu shot.  Do you really know if the reason you didn't get the flu was because of the shot or because you wouldn't have gotten it anyway.  Same with the preventative measures taken with adjustments.  Will you know for sure if it prevented the flu?

 

Chances are if you work at an office, ride the train, are around children, or really anywhere out in public this winter and if you come out the other side this spring without having caught the flu or any bad colds, you can chalk it up to your adjustments.  In contrast to the flu shot, that can actually make you feel sick the day you get the shot, adjustments do not put anything foreign into your body and is also beneficial for more than just the flu. 

 

 

 

 

Author: Dr. George
Source: Catchfire Coaching
Copyright: 2010 2010


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Benefits of Cold Laser Therapy

 

Cold Laser Therapy – Painless Acupuncture

 

Want to try acupuncture but are afraid of the needles? If so then Cold Laser Therapy might be a more viable option for you than going the traditional route.

 

Cold laser therapy is also known as photobiomodulation or laser biostimulation. The theory behind it is that exposure to low level laser light can help stimulate the flow of blood, healing and tissue growth.

 

The term "cold laser" refers to the use of low-intensity or low levels of laser light to heal tissue. Proponents claim that cold laser therapy can reduce pain and inflammation for just about any condition. These lasers are used directly on or over the affected area.

 

Cold lasers are also sometimes used for acupuncture, with laser beams substituting for the pinprick. This treatment regimen appeals to those who want acupuncture but who fear the pain of needles.

 

Cold lasers can treat a variety of conditions including --

 

  • Back pain from an old or new sports injury or accident
  • Repetitive strain injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Lower back pain
  • Migraine headaches
  • Addiction to painkillers (as the cold laser treatment can bring relief from pain and spare the need for them)
  • Skin ulcers and bed sores
  • Acne
  • Scarring form a recent surgery
  • Cold sores due to herpes simplex

 

Cold laser therapy can also help smokers quit smoking. The laser can be directed over acupuncture points that simulate the effects of nicotine in the brain. This can help balance the body to relieve addiction.

 

Cold laser therapy is by no means a new or alternative therapy especially in Europe where they have been used for a long time.

 

First of all cold lasers should not be confused with conventional hot lasers which are also used in medicine. In general High power lasers are used to cut through tissue and shrink tumors on the skin or in internal organs. They are also used to remove tumors or cancerous tissue.

 

Low-level lasers, on the other hand, are used to stimulate tissue repair through a process of bio-stimulation. The shining of the laser on the skin injures it minimally and speeds blood flow to the area thus facilitating healing.

Laser biostimulation was first discovered quite by accident by a Hungarian Endre Mester at the Semmelweis University in Budapest. Mester was conducting an experiment to find out if exposure to laser light could cause cancer.

 

Mestar shaved mice and divided them into two groups. He gave one a group a treatment with a lower level ruby laser. Neither group of mice developed cancer but the shaved hair grow back quicker on the treated group rather than the untreated group. This is was the birth of the discovery of how exposure to low level lasers, also known as cold lasers could stimulate growth.

 

Since that Mester's surprising discovery about mice, cold lasers have been used to treat all kinds of chronic pain and injuries. They have also proven to be successful when it comes to speeding up the healing of wounds and nerves.

 

However the area where cold laser therapy shows it's greatest promise is in the treatment of inflammation where the irradiation from the low dose laser helps speed blood to the affected area.

 

In fact cold laser therapy is thought to be so effective for inflamed joints and muscles that the results are comparable to the pain relief experienced when one takes a NSAIDS. Of course the benefit is that cold laser therapy does not bring with it the stomach upset and ulcers that can be the side effect of taking anti-inflammatories.

 

The positive physiological effects of cold laser therapy include –

 

  • Improved metabolism
  • Increase of cell metabolism
  • Improved blood circulation
  • Pain relief
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Stimulation of wound healing

 

In Europe cold laser treatment has been used for quite a long time to treat sore muscles, joints and chronic pain of all kinds. The laser that has been in use since 1975 in Europe is called the HeNe laser.

 

HeNE is short for "visible red light" This laser, which sets the standard for the visible red light lasers used in cold laser therapy has a 632.8 nm with a continuous non polarized light. This type of cold laser is also a gas laser and therefore expensive to operate as it is powered with a high voltage. Still it is one of the most commonly used of lasers in physician's offices, as they are inexpensive and been in use for so long that many of them are second hand.

 

There is also a cold laser that is more specifically designed to be used with muscle and joint problems that are associated with problems such as the shoulders, back spine and other joints. It also helps with problems such as trsimus, lymph edema and whiplash. This is called the GaAs-laser . It is a very powerful invisible infrared laser.

 

For deep lying problems the GaAs laser is penetrating best (because of its high peak power) and for problems in skin and mucosa the HeNe laser is the most effective one (due to the high degree of coherency). The 808 or 890 nm lasers are more all-round types and often battery powered. There are single- or multi probes.

 

Cold laser therapy is a very gentle and effective therapy that is also considered to be quite safe. However both the operator of= the laser and patient should wear appropriate protection for the eyes (dense filter spectacles) in case of accidental or reflected exposure, and the laser beam should never be directed at the eyes. This is especially true if the clinician is using one of the older red light visible type cold lasers.

 

So does cold laser therapy work?

 

In a compendium of studies reported in the October 7, 1994 of Dynamic Chiropriactics D.C. James White and Kendra Kaesbery White discuss several studies in an article.

 

These two chiropractors mention many studies in this article that touts the benefits of using cold laser therapy. One study involved the use of cold laser therapy treatments over 4,000 subjects who had suffered from conditions such as degenerative arthritis; muscle pain; tendonitis and tension myalgia. Researchers found that at the end of the research period more than 80 percent of the subjects found a marked lessening of their symptoms following irradiation with a cold laser.

 

Another study discussed in this article involved over 100 subjects and over 500 laser treatments. It was observed that acute soft tissue pain syndromes showed a dramatic response following the initial laser treatment with a marked reduction in tissue swelling, bruising and a substantial increase in pain relief.

 

Yet another study conducted in Northern Ireland found that cold laser treatment was effective for the treatment of myofascial and postoperative pain syndromes; rheumatoid arthritis; muscle tears; hematomas; tendinitis; shingles; herpes simplex; scarring; burn and would healing.

 

In the same study from Ireland, cold laser treatment was compared with four other modalities (interferential therapy, shortwave diathermy, ultrasound, and pulsed electromagnetic therapy), for use in pain relief and wound healing and came out first in terms of effectiveness.

 

The benefits of cold laser therapy are –

 

  • No need to take painkillers
  • Rapid relief in some cases
  • Spares the need for invasive surgery
  • Stimulates the immune system
  • Increases the blood supply in the affected area
  • Is an option for those who want acupuncture but fear needles?
  • Develops collagen and nerve tissue
  • Promotes wound healing

 

Low-level therapy uses cold (subthermal) laser light energy to direct bio-stimulative light energy to the body's cells without injuring or damaging them in any way.

 

The conclusion – cold laser therapy is precise and accurate; and offers safe and effective treatment for a wide variety of conditions.

To learn how they can help you call 817-358-3552, or e-mail info@mainstreetchiro.net

Author: Dr. George
Source: Catchfire Co. Inc.
Copyright: Dr. George 2009


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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression of the median nerve at the wrist, which may result in numbness, tingling, weakness, or muscle damage in the hand and fingers.

  • Numbness or tingling in the thumb and next two or three fingers of one or both hands
  • Numbness or tingling of the palm of the hand
  • Pain extending to the elbow
  • Pain in wrist or hand in one or both hands
  • Problems with fine finger movements (coordination) in one or both hands
  • Wasting away of the muscle under the thumb (in advanced or long-term cases)
  • Weak grip or difficulty carrying bags (a common complaint)
  • Weakness in one or both hands

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by pressure on the median nerve at the point where it passes through the wrist. The median nerve supplies sensation to the thumb side of the palm, and to the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and the thumb side of the ring finger. It also helps with movement to part of the hand.

The area where the nerve enters the hand is called the carpal tunnel. Since the passageway is stiff, any swelling in this area can put pressure on the nerve. This may also be called entrapment of the nerve.

Injury to the wrist area can cause swelling of the tissues and carpal tunnel syndrome. This type of injury may be caused by sports such as racquetball and handball, or occur during sewing, typing, driving, assembly-line work, painting, writing, use of tools (especially hand tools or tools that vibrate), or similar activities.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is common in people who perform repetitive motions of the hand and wrist, such as typing. The condition occurs most often in people 30 to 60 years old, and is more common in women than men.

Some people go this route: BUT THIS SHOULD BE A LAST RESORT!!!!

MEDICATIONS

Medications used in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Corticosteroid injections, given into the carpal tunnel area, may provide relief of symptoms.

SURGERY - LAST RESORT!!!!

Carpal tunnel release is a surgical procedure that cuts into the ligament that is pressing on the nerve. Surgery is successful most of the time, but depends on severity and duration of nerve compression.

After surgery, the damaged nerve must heal for the symptoms to improve. This can take months. In severe cases, the nerve may not be able to fully heal. Certain types of damage (such as muscular atrophy) may not be reversible.

In severe cases, electromyography or nerve conduction studies may be used to check how well the nerve is recovering.

Avoid or reduce the number of repetitive wrist movements whenever possible. Use tools and equipment that are properly designed to reduce the risk of wrist injury.

Ergonomic aids, such as split keyboards, keyboard trays, typing pads, and wrist braces, may be used to improve wrist posture during typing. Take frequent breaks when typing and always stop if there is tingling or pain.

If the condition is treated properly, there are usually no complications. If untreated, the nerve can be damaged, causing permanent weakness, numbness, and tingling.

Call for an appointment with your health care provider if you have symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Call your health care provider if symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome do not respond to treatment, or if there seems to be a loss of muscle mass in the fingers.

Call office today if you have these symptoms, 817-358-3552

 

Author: Dr. Payne
Source: Conditions
Copyright: Dr. Payne 2009


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Foot-Body Connection

 

Your feet are the foundation of your body. They support you when you stand, walk, or run. And they help protect your spine, bones, and soft tissues from damaging stress as you move around. Your feet perform better when all their muscles, arches, and bones are in their ideal stable positions. The foot is constructed with three arches which, when properly maintained, give exceptional supportive strength. These three arches form a supporting vault that distributes the weight of the entire body. If there is compromise of one arch in the foot, the other arches must compensate and are subject to additional stresses, which usually leads to further compromise. It’s a chain reaction. Healthcare professionals know alleviating pain in one part of your body often requires treating a different part. The pain you feel in your neck could be caused by a misalignment in your spine that is caused by unbalanced positioning in your feet. See? It’s a chain reaction. By stabilizing and balancing your feet, Foot Levelers orthotics enhance your body’s performance and efficiency, reduce pain, and contribute to your total body wellness. Our orthotics complement your healthcare professional’s treatment when you stand, walk, and live your active life.

Nearly everyone can benefit from wearing high-quality, flexible, custom-made foot orthotics. You do NOT have to be suffering from foot pain or have 'fallen arches' to benefit from high-quality custom orthotics. I have fitted hundreds of folks with custom made orthotics with great results. Patients report less pain and/or improved athletic performance! In my clinical experience, custom orthotics are vastly superior to 'over the counter' foot inserts. Lastly, when dealing with orthotics the clinician MUST look at the "big picture' and examine the patient 'above the foot'. I perform a thorough history and appropriate gait assessment and palpatory exam on the entire biomechanical structure. Below is a pretty good summary of my philosophy regarding orthotics. Click on the image to learn more.

Dr. R. Brett Payne, D.C., C.C.C.N.

Click on image to learn more...


Click on image for more information

Author: Dr. Payne
Source: Foot Levelers
Copyright: Dr. Payne 2009


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Headaches & Migraines

 

Headaches

According to the latest research, 9% of men and 12% of women in the U.S. experience at least 1-2 headache episodes per month. And, more than 4% of the U.S. population suffers from frequent headaches, defined as headaches that occur at least 180 days a year. Needless to say, headaches have become a social and economic burden in the United States, as well as other parts of the world.

Scientists have identified over 300 causes for headaches. Various pain-sensitive structures and tissues including the skin, subcutaneous tissue, muscles, arteries, periosteal bone covering, and the upper cervical and facial nerves produce headaches when irritated or injured. Fortunately, only a handful of causes are responsible for the majority of headaches.

The most common of these headaches include:

  1. Cervicogenic- problems within the neck
  2. Muscle-tension- neck and upper back muscular spasms
  3. Post-traumatic- following head/neck trauma, i.e. whiplash
  4. Drug-induced- from analgesic overuse
  5. Migraines
  6. Cluster

Doctors of chiropractic successfully help thousands of individuals everyday obtain safe, effective, long-term relief from their headaches. This is because most headaches have a spinal, muscular, or habitual component which the chiropractor has been trained to identify and treat. In fact, surveys show that 10-25% of patients initiate chiropractic care for the relief of headaches.

To learn more about specific headache types, headache treatments, prevention tips, or to view various articles related to headaches, choose from the links menu above.

Author: Chiroplanet
Source: Chiroplanet
Copyright: Chiroplanet 2009


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Chiropractic Included At Vancouver Winter Olympic Games

For the first time in the history of the Olympic Games, the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada, include chiropractic care inside the Olympic Village Polyclinic, a multi-disciplinary facility offering comprehensive healthcare and medical services.

While DCs have historically been included on the Olympic medical staff, this year’s events mark the first time that DCs from the host country will be treating athletes and officials from around the world directly inside the Polyclinic.

“This is an historic event not only for the chiropractic profession, but also the athletes who will now have access to the care that will help them prepare their bodies for competition,” states Michael Reed, DC, MS, DACBSP, and team USA’s medical director (USOC). “These athletes train hard and endure significant physical demands. Sports-focused DCs, along with other members of the sports medicine team, are specially skilled to assist them in reaching peak performance.”

Chiropractic care has experienced several major moments in Olympic history, dating back to Leroy Perry, DC, who provided chiropractic care to athletes representing Antigua during the 1976 Games in Montreal, Canada. During the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid, NY, George Goodheart, DC, became the first official chiropractor appointed to the U.S. team.

With each subsequent Olympic Games and Pan American Games, the U.S. teams — along with a growing number of other national teams — have included at least one doctor of chiropractic on their medical staff.

“Inclusion inside the Polyclinic is another major milestone for the chiropractic profession, and we are grateful to the host city of Vancouver, the head of medical services at the Polyclinic, Jack Taunton, MD, and to Robert Armitage, DC, who helped make this possible,” says USOC Director of Sports Medicine Clinics, Bill Moreau, DC, DACBSP.

Author: Southern California University of Health Sciences
Source: Southern California University of Health Sciences. February 24, 2010.
Copyright: Southern California University of Health Sciences 2010


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College Students At Risk For Back Pain

A recent survey involving 963 college students indicates the college lifestyle is strongly associated with back pain. Of those surveyed, 38 percent or almost 4 in 10 students reported having suffered from back pain within the previous school year. Interestingly, the strongest associations with back pain in college students were the students either feeling chronically fatigued or being in an emotionally abusive relationship. Thus, survey findings indicated psychosocial factors were highly associated with a student’s likelihood of suffering from back pain.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: JMPT. Vol 33, Issue 2. February 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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Study Expert Validates Chiropractic Standard of Care

The most recent research (Neck Pain Task Force Report of the Bone and Joint Decade 2000-2010, a study sanctioned by the United Nations and the World Health Organization) indicates neck manipulation is a safe and effective form of health care,” according to Matt Pagano, DC, chiropractic profession spokesperson.

Respected researcher and epidemiologist J. David Cassidy, DC, PhD, DrMedSc, testified as a key witness last week at the hearings on informed consent before the Connecticut Board of Chiropractic Examiners in Hartford, Conn. Speaking as an expert witness and consultant to the International Chiropractors Association (ICA)—and with the support of all chiropractic organizations involved in the process, including the American Chiropractic Association, Association of Chiropractic Colleges, Foundation for Chiropractic Progress, Life West, New York College of Chiropractic, Parker College of Chiropractic, Palmer College of Chiropractic, and the University of Bridgeport College of Chiropractic—Dr. Cassidy addressed key facts and issues on the basis of the existing science and research record, to which he has been a significant contributor. The objective of his testimony was to bring the discussion from an emotional issue back to science and the objective research record.    

Dr. Cassidy joined an extensive list of witnesses representing the chiropractic profession, including William J. Lauretti, DC; James J. Lehman, DC, MBA; J. Clay McDonald, DC, JD, MBA; Gerard W. Clum, DC; Stephen M. Perle, DC, MS; Gina Carucci, DC, MS, DICCP, who appeared on behalf of the Connecticut Chiropractic Association (CCA); and George Curry, DC, FICA, who appeared on behalf of the Connecticut Chiropractic Council (CCC).  

“The chiropractic profession unequivocally supports a patient’s right to be informed of the material benefits and risks of any type of health care treatment – not just chiropractic. Legislation or regulatory mandates governing informed consent should apply to all health care providers and all treatments in equal measure. However, a new law, regulation or mandate highlighting one specific treatment by a specific health care profession, which carries with it an extremely rare association and no causal link identified in the research, is simply not good public health policy. It would set an unnecessary precedent for all health care providers, procedures and products that would be virtually impossible to implement,” said Pagano.

The existing informed consent standards in Connecticut allow for the best opportunity for shared decision making between a patient and his or her health care provider. Further, the chiropractic organizations participating in the hearing process all believe informed consent is more than a piece of paper; it is a process. It should occur in the context of a discussion between a doctor and a patient, and it should be appropriately documented.

In a finding highly relevant to the issue before the Connecticut Board of Chiropractic Examiners, the Neck Pain Task Force study demonstrated that patients suffering from headache and neck pain are no more likely to suffer from a stroke following a visit to a chiropractor than they are after a visit to a family medical physician. This implies that there are factors involved other than the type of care provided by doctors of chiropractic.  It’s important to note that millions of patients safely benefit from chiropractic care every year—they are able to return to their normal activities and enjoy a better quality of life.

Dr. Cassidy was an investigator with the Bone and Joint Decade 2000-2010 Task Force on Neck Pain and Its Associated Disorders. The work of this international task force affirms the safety and benefits of chiropractic care for people with neck pain—a condition frequently treated by doctors of chiropractic. The Task Force initiated this new population-based, case-control and case-crossover study, which appeared in the Feb. 15, 2008 edition of the journal Spine. 



The study, which analyzed nine years’ worth of data from a population of 110-million person years, concluded that vertebrobasilar artery (VBA) stroke is a very rare event and that the risk of VBA stroke following a visit to a chiropractor’s office appears to be no different than the risk of VBA stroke following a visit to the office of a primary care medical physician (PCP). 
 
The study goes on to say that any observed association between VBA stroke and chiropractic manipulation—as well as its apparent association with PCP visits—is likely due to patients with an undiagnosed vertebral artery dissection seeking care for neck pain and headache prior to their stroke.
 


Over the years, popular media has all too often sensationalized the association between chiropractic cervical manipulation and cerebral vascular accidents—even though the evidence would strongly indicate that this assertion is incorrect. The organizations representing the chiropractic profession believe this most recent evidence should help to dispel any myths on this issue, as well as provide more data to support the safety and effectiveness of chiropractic procedures.
 


As a profession, doctors of chiropractic remain committed to expanding the research and clinical understanding of VBA injuries, because even one cerebral vascular incident that could have been prevented or detected early is one too many.

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: American Chiropractic Association. January 28, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010


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U.S. Hospital Infections - A Serious Killer

A new report indicates U.S. hospitals for many are a potentially deadly place. According to the report, 48,000 patients in 2006 were killed in U.S. hospitals from pneumonia and blood-borne infections acquired during the patients’ hospital stay. This amounted to approximately $8.1 billion in medical costs. According to researcher Anup Malani, “In some cases, relatively healthy people check into the hospital for routine surgery. They develop sepsis because of a lapse in infection control and they can die.” Overall, it is estimated that 1.7 million healthcare-associated infections are diagnosed every year in the United States.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Reuters. February 23, 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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