What Is It And How It Can Help
You’ve been dealing with those tights muscles, stiff joints, or even that pestering back pain for far too long. And what you’ve been trying may not be working.
So what’s next? Massage therapy? Chiropractic adjustments? You’ve probably heard of both. Maybe you’ve even had a few sessions. But what if we told you there’s something else out there that’s better, and that can get you on track to a healthier, happier body?
Have we tapped your curiosity yet?
We’re talking about chiropractic massage. Yes, the two go together!
Chiropractic massage is the unique combination of chiropractic care and massage therapy. Working in tandem. This helps support your spine and body wellness, in a more inclusive way.
(Read more about our unique approach to chiropractic massage, here)
How Is Chiropractic Massage Different From Massage Therapy?
When you think of going in for a massage therapy session, you probably visualize a relaxing spa day. Warm candles, hot towels, and a soothing experience with gentle massaging. And who doesn't like that?
But if you’re wanting to really dig deep and get to the root of your pain, you should consider chiropractic massage. Sure, it looks a little different than a day at the spa, but the therapy is well worth it.
Chiropractic care focuses on the central nervous system. This promotes wellness throughout the entire body. It offers a more holistic approach towards treatment. The exact execution of chiropractic massage may vary depending on your ailments. But the end goal is this:
Restoring proper movement and function to the joint to eliminate pain.
What does that look like? At our office, we first target which muscle isn’t working properly. With muscle manipulation (through muscle work or soft tissue work), we can achieve proper functioning of the bones. Because it’s really the muscles that move the bones.
Massage therapy helps reduce tension. Reduced stress and increased flexibility are also often reported. While massage therapy focuses on reducing the symptoms of certain health conditions, chiropractic massage tends to treat the cause of specific medical conditions.
How You Can Benefit From Chiropractic Massage
If you’ve ever seen a doctor for long-term pain, you’re likely offered different treatment options. These can look like allopathic medicines, or more invasive approaches. Choosing the right treatment can be difficult.
Sometimes, you can find relief without the aid of chemicals or surgical instruments. But other times, a more holistic approach may prove to be the better option.
Chiropractic massage can provide relief from many different types of pains. Read on to see what this therapy can do for you.
Going through life’s hustle and bustle non-stop can catch up to our bodies. Especially our muscles, since many of us tend to overwork them. Chiropractic massage can help reduce tension. It can also reduce the inflammation that may be causing pain.
Joint Pain And Muscular Injuries
Let’s say you’ve suffered a recent muscle pull or strain. Every day, you’re adding extra pressure to your muscles. This can lead to a more serious injury.
Sometimes, this can cause surrounding joints to stiffen. Now you’re dealing with even more pain than before.
Chiropractic massage can target the root cause of joint stiffness. By loosening and relaxing the proper muscle, a chiropractor can correct the condition and provide patients with added benefits. These include correct posture alignment, reduced pain, and increased blood flow.
Chronic back pain? More like chronic pain in the neck. That’s really what it should be called. (Don’t worry, we treat both conditions!) Fortunately, chiropractic massage has offered many patients relief.
Chiropractors focus on spinal alignment which can eliminate most back pain. Treating the stress in your spine through massage can help increase blood flow to damaged muscle fibers. This ultimately speeds up the healing process and decreases overall pain.
Anxiety And Depression
Anxiety and depression are considered mental conditions, but the mind and body are not two separate entities.
By adjusting the physical conditions of the central nervous system, chiropractic massage therapy can improve mental wellbeing.
Chiropractic massage therapy can help in a myriad of conditions. It’s not just for those suffering with extreme muscle and joint pain, either. Many patients utilize it for preventative care too!
Understanding the cause of your pain and finding relief can be a long, difficult journey. Why not try a less-invasive way that has benefited thousands of patients. If chiropractic massage therapy sounds right for you, contact us today for more information!
Some pain is the result of a known injury which just will take time to heal. Other pain is harder to figure out where it came from. This is how you can narrow it down.
If you have a pain that has come on gradually, this could mean a few things. First, it could be something you've been doing for a long time (even years), that is finally catching up to you. For example, you've been sitting at a desk for 20 years, and your upper back posture has led to a lot of stress on your spine and resulted in inflammation and degeneration that has grown to the point of causing pain that your brain is finally acknowledging.
It's like someone calling your name when you're really engrossed in something and you don't realize they're calling your name until they yell. That "threshold" of when you notice that person is yelling your name is different for everyone and can be influenced by many things. Inflammatory foods, your mood, etc. It is different if you're busy doing other things vs. just lying there.
Something else to consider when thinking about where your pain is coming from is whether or not you've changed something recently in your routine or surroundings. A new workout, office chair, ergonomic adjustment, pillow, or a pair of running shoes for example. Sometimes the body has adapted to even poor circumstances (like a bad pillow) and when you get a better pillow, it can have difficulty adapting. Or the new running shoes are forcing your foot into a different posture. This means there could be an imbalance (usually a certain stubborn muscle) that is holding things back.
A third thing to think about would be something that is causing systemic inflammation. For example your poor diet is finally catching up to you. If you use a heating pad or take a hot bath and it makes it worse then this could be what's going on.
If your pain is worse in the morning it is the result of the overnight buildup of inflammation from the above causes. Usually during the day, we are moving and flexing our limbs which "pushes" fluid around and through areas. When we've been sitting or lying down for a while and we get up and all of a sudden and force our body to move without giving these areas a chance to "drain" the inflammation, it hurts. Heel pain after sitting for a while or first thing in the morning is an example.
If something is worse as the day goes on, then it is the result of muscles that are upset for having to work so hard. The saying "it takes a village" applies to our body also. Muscles work together to create movement and when something goes wrong with a muscle, there are other muscles that can take up the slack. If this is just temporary then we usually don't notice, but if it happens long term we have a problem. There is a build-up of metabolic waste products like lactic acid that create pain.
Of course there are a dozen other scenarios that are impossible to address that are outside the scope of a blog, but I hope this helps you narrow down the cause of your pain.
Tackling Your Mental Care Through A Mind-Body Approach
Did you know that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States? Or that in the U.S alone, a whopping 40 million adults suffer from anxiety? Did you also know that anxiety is a highly treatable disorder, yet only 36.9% of those suffering. from it seek and receive treatment?
Yup, we’re dropping some serious facts today. In fact, we’ve got one more for you: Seeing a chiropractor for anxiety, and receiving treatment, can significantly help with symptoms.
We know what you’re thinking - how does chiropractic care have anything to do with anxiety? Oh, it has everything to do with it. A chiropractor and anxiety go hand in hand. Or, bone in bone rather. You see, the mind and body aren’t two unrelated entities. Our minds are actually deeply connected and related to our bodies through what’s called the superhighway: our spinal cord.
By working on the muscles and assessing the physical factors of the central nervous system, chiropractic care can help improve mental symptoms. It all starts with addressing the root cause of anxiety. This is important because any interruption in the flow of this superhighway could have an effect on mood and mental well-being.
(To learn more about my approach to chiropractic care, click here.)
Symptoms of Anxiety
Anxiety, by itself, is something many people experience at some point in their life. Financial troubles, job losses, moving, etc. can all be stressful situations. But tack on a global pandemic, and anxiety levels are bound to rise. I think we can all agree that 2020 has been challenging.
Anxiety is a very normal response to life’s stressful events. It’s when anxiety becomes bigger than the events and interferes with everyday events that it becomes an anxiety disorder.
While anxiety looks different for everyone, here are some common symptoms:
These physical symptoms can intensify mental symptoms. You’re left with heightened anxiety that becomes more difficult to live with.
So how exactly can chiropractic help anxiety and patients who suffer from depression? Let’s take a look.
The Mind/Body Connection & Chiropractic Care
Remember when we talked about the mind and body connection? Of course you do. It’s a two-way road, really. Our thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and response to mental stimuli have a huge influence on our biological functioning. Our body’s physical well-being impacts our mental state as well. It’s a complex, interconnected relationship. Chiropractic care is unique in the fact that it tackles physical well-being to promote mental wellness.
So what does seeing a chiropractor for anxiety look like? What are the benefits?
Pro-tip: Walking can increase your well-being and reduce physical pain.
Chiropractic Care Can Lower Your Blood Pressure
“Lower? My blood pressure spikes up just thinking about going to the doctor’s office!”
We get it. It can be intimidating. But ongoing chiropractic care (including physical/massage therapy) can actually decrease blood pressure. High blood pressure is a common symptom of anxiety. By lowering it through chiropractic treatment, we can also see a sudden decrease in other anxiety symptoms. If you’re someone who does well with evidence-based findings, here’s this: In a study of 21 people with anxiety and high blood pressure, chiropractic care decreased systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements while also significantly reducing overall anxiety.
Spine Adjustments Release Happy Hormones
No, that’s not the technical term for it. But hormones such as oxytocin, neurotensin, and cortisol have a positive effect on our nervous systems. When the spine is adjusted it triggers the release of these hormones throughout the body. And that can make all the difference in helping someone feel happier. And we like happier. Starting to see how a chiropractor and anxiety go hand in hand?
Pro-tip: Did you know you can reduce anxiety symptoms with Vitamin D?
Results Without Harmful Side Effects
Okay, this one’s what we’re most proud of. Chiropractic care is all natural. Oftentimes, patients with anxiety and depression take medications to reduce their symptoms. And we get that. But unfortunately, medications can sometimes introduce a whole new slew of symptoms, better known as side effects. These can include insomnia, loss of appetite, weight gain, fatigue, or nausea. The list can be long. Chiropractic care helps reduce the symptoms of anxiety without the added side effects. So you could potentially lose the medications for good. After consulting with your doctor, of course.
Get Better Sleep Through Chiropractic Care
Those who suffer from anxiety know too well what a lack of sleep looks like. Chiropractic care can help get some seriously needed rest. Many patients reported getting better quality sleep immediately after their chiropractic adjustment. If you’re often dealing with fatigue and/or insomnia, seeking chiropractic care can help.
See a Chiropractor for Anxiety & Get Rid Of Muscle Tension and Pain
Seeing a chiropractor for anxiety can do so much for you. This includes relieving muscle tension and pain. Sometimes, our spinal bones get pulled out of alignment causing muscle tension. A small misalignment could lead to nagging physical pain and headaches. A chiropractor can help restore the spine to its proper alignment which, often immediately, helps muscles relax.
Finding relief from anxiety can be a long, hard journey. Seeking a chiropractor for anxiety disorders can lead to decreased symptoms in a completely natural way. Contact us today for more information!
The standing version of the "hip flexor stretch". This is a great stretch for lower back pain if you have a tight psoas muscle.
Estimates are that anywhere from one-in-ten to one-in-five people will experience an episode of neck pain within a given year. Although most people recover, many individuals will experience a relapse and the pain becomes chronic. Here are some stretching and strengthening exercises that might save you a trip to the chiropractor.
Some great stretches for to do after an hour of sitting and staring a the computer:
If the above exercises don't help, then it is time to get your neck pain checked out by your chiropractor. Pain killers and muscle relaxants will not do the job.
Low Back Pain (LBP) is one of the leading causes of disability and is a costly problem facing the world. The World Health Organization has classified LBP as a "major disabliing condition."
The older the body becomes, the greater LBP can have an affect. Advancing age correlates with poor treatment outcomes. One study found that baby boomers account for 51% (over 10 billion) of the cost associated with chronic LBP.
A recent study scoured sources for studies of patients over 55 with chronic LBP - defined as having LBP for more than 3 months) - that used some kind of manual therapy. They also looked for studies that measured pain and disability, and were randomized controlled trials.
The four studies that met this criteria did show that manual therapy can improve the pain level and ability to function with very few adverse side effects compared to Surgery.
Chiropractic care should be considered as an effective way to deal with chronic LBP - especially for the aging body when surgery can have such debilitating effects on the quality of life of those over 55.
A systematic research review found that patients with chronic back pain can experience improvements in pain, disability, and quality of life if they engage in some form of ongoing physical activity, whether it is an exercise routine or simply taking daily walks.
Basically, just plain ol' walking is good for your low back pain.
But most people don't walk more than in and out from the house, or in and out from the store - short walks. You need a long walk for the body to really relax into a rhythm and extend the hips.
It is the opposite of sitting...
My guess is most of you don't look like that when you're sitting though...
Sitting shortens the hip muscles in the front, and reduces flexibility of the low back so that it can't react to the stresses of daily life as well.
So get out and stretch those legs!
Source: Disability and Rehabilitation, December 2017
There are two types of muscle fibers that stabilize and move the hips and lower extremities. The first kind are called Tonic muscle fibers and they are always working to keep us stable when we're not lying down. They tend to be tight and short. During rest, they can get tight and need to be stretched when we are active again.
Important Tonic muscles in the hip area are the Iliopsoas (or hip flexor) and hamstring muscles. Below I will describe two stretches for them:
For the Iliopsoas, stand and take a step forward with one foot. Make sure your hips are facing forward and you're not twisting to one side. Tuck your butt so that your lower back curve flattens out a bit. This should create a stretch in the groin on the leg that is behind you. Hold for 30 seconds and take a few deep breaths. Do this multiple times per day - and the longer you sit, the more you should do it.
The hamstring stretch you're going to do lying down on your back. Scoot close to a doorway where you can put one foot up against the front of the door jam with the other leg extending through the doorway opening. (If you're really inflexible, you may only be able to put your foot up on the door jam a couple feet. The more flexible you are, the further up the door jam you can put your foot and the more straight up and down your leg will be.) Then do the following:
The other type of muscle fibers are called "phasic". They only work when needed and tend to be weak and thus require strengthening instead of stretching. Important phasic muscles of the hip area are the abdominal and buttock. Below are two strengthening exercises for them:
For the abs, a basic "crunch" will do. Lie on your back, clasp your hands behind your head and lift your head and shoulders off of the floor a couple inches and hold it for as long as you can while taking a few deep breaths. Repeat 3 times.
For your Gluteal muscles or your Butt, stand and bring one leg slightly behind you so that the toes of that foot are pointed touching the floor. Shift your weight to the leg in front so that the foot in back is just for balance and lift the rear leg up being careful to feel your butt contracting and doing the work. Squeeze it as tightly as you can as you lift your back leg while standing strong on your forward leg. Repeat 10x. Do the same thing on the other side.
Depending on what kind of hip pain you have, I may recommend further exercises that you can perform at home as part of your treatment plan.
Driver distraction is one of the most important factors in a car crash. According to a survey of 6,000 drivers by the NHTSA, 20% of those in the 18-20 year old group and 30% of those 21-34 years old believed that texting did not affect their driving.
Of the 6,000 drivers surveyed, 6% had been in a crash the previous year and 7% with near misses. Here are some interesting things from the survey:
Researchers from the Monash University Accident Research Centre in Australia found that texting severely impaired driving skills, as participants spent 400% more time with their eyes off the road.
Hands-free devices aren't without risks either. The brain is distracted when talking, as attention is shifted from the road to the conversation—especially if the conversation is tense. Interestingly, the Texas A&M Transportation Institute reported that voice-to-text offers no safety advantage over manual texting while the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reported voice-activated in-car technologies “dangerously undermine driver attention.”
To summarize, avoid all distractions while driving and keep your eyes on the road!
Carpal tunnel syndrome or CTS for short, results from the compression of a nerve as it travels through the wrist. Typical symptoms associated with CTS include numbness, tingling, and weakness in the thumb, index, middle, and ring finger (usually not the pinkie).
In non-emergency situations, standard treatment recommends that patients undergo conservative care before considering more invasive procedures, like surgery. This article will look at the differences between standard medical care vs. chiropractic care to treat CTS.
In a case study series, researchers divided 91 patients with confirmed signs and symptoms of CTS into two groups: one receiving standard medical care utilizing ibuprofen and night splints; and one group receiving chiropractic care which included manipulation of the upper extremity bony joints and soft tissues, as well as spinal manipulation.
Researchers monitored improvement with self-reports, nerve conduction studies, and vibrometric sensation testing of the affected hand. Both groups experienced an improvement in comfort, finger sensation, and nerve conduction velocity; however, vibrometric sensation testing revealed greater improvements among members of the chiropractic treatment group (3.05 decibels vs. 1.37 decibels).
The authors of the study point out that chiropractic provides an alternative form of non-surgical care, and patients with CTS should be offered the option, especially for those who cannot take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) due to intolerance like stomach irritation or liver-kidney issues.
Personal preference is also important in the decision making process for CTS. Other options suggested by doctors of chiropractic include work modifications, ice therapy, and nutritional options such as ginger, turmeric, boswellia, bromelain, fish oil, amongst others.
Specific stretching exercises are also recommended that can be done at home and work. The treatment plan for the CTS patient will often include a combination of these options in order to achieve a satisfying outcome.