Posture- Is it really important?!

Yes.

Posture is probably one of the most important things that I see in every person I come into contact with.

I check posture in every single exam and observe it before my patients get onto my table each visit.

Posture is an outward indicator of stresses within the body. It shows us where there are imbalances and chronic issues. It can predict future injuries.

Posture influences:

  • Blood Flow
  • Nerve Flow
  • Joint Function
  • Muscle Tension
  • Hormonal Balance in the Brain
  • Perceptions of Others
  • Perceptions of OURSELVES
  • Breathing
  • This list could go on forever!…

Posture really is that important.

So what is good posture anyway?

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The graphics above are mainly focused on the low back, pelvis, and lower body. However, we can see how a gravity line should be able to be drawn straight down our bodies from the side to demonstrate proper posture.

If I held a piece of string with a weight on it at the height of  your ear, it should fall through the shoulder, through the hip, just behind the knee and through your ankle to the ground.

When I think about what this feels like, imagine that someone has tied a string to the crown of your head and is gently tugging upward. Your chin will tuck slightly, your spine will lengthen, shoulders are able to relax, and tailbone tucks slightly. (This is seen in the far left photo, above. The photos to the right demonstrate increased forward head posture with hands rolled forward and low back rounded.

From the front, posture is focused on horizontal lines as well. I ask myself, “Is everything level and equal from side to side?”

  • Are the eyes level or is the head tilted?
  • Can I see an equal amount of ear on each side?
  • Are the shoulders level?
  • Are the hips and pelvis level?
  • Is the spine in midline?
  • Are the hands in front or at the sides?
  • Are the shoulders rounded?

Both of the photos above demonstrate asymmetries, but note how the left side photo demonstrates rounding of the shoulders, head tilt, right sided torso shift, etc. The photo on the right has far better posture.

How can I fix my Poor Posture?

Posture can be remedied in a number of ways.

What activities are causing the poor posture and can they be changed?

Often, poor posture is a response to a chronic position that we work in, relax in, or a repetitive activity. When this is the case, I look for ways to modify the activity or improve work ergonomics.

Is there a skeletal component?

Sometimes, we have held a posture for so long that we have, literally, changed the shape of our spine in response. In these cases, it usually takes chiropractic care and rehabilitative exercises to begin to make changes in the spine- resulting in changes in posture. As a chiropractor, there are many ways that I work with the spine and joints to help stabilize and improve posture.

Homework

All of my patients leave the office with some type of homework. We are creatures of habit and our brains rewire themselves to perpetuate these habits. This means that it takes consistent movement correction to repattern the brain. Remember the phrase: Neurons that Fire Together, Wire Together. This means that we have to fire correct patterns of movement over and over again to train our brains and bodies to correct our posture.

Be diligent!

It is also immensely important to be aware of our posture in the moment. I set a timer when I am doing computer work (blogs like this, patient notes, etc). When the timer goes off, I get up and do some exercises to improve my posture. It is inevitable that when we sit at a computer, our head drifts forward, our shoulders round, and we generally sit poorly. The same stands true for watching TV, standing in lines, looking at your phone or tablet!

Overall, posture is one of the best things that we can pay attention to to know how our biomechanics (the way we move in daily life) are programmed. Take a look of the last few photos someone has taken of you (selfies don’t really work) and see if you notice any of the things I have mentioned above.

Take control of your posture and start changing your health!

As always, contact me if you would like help with meeting your health goals!

-Dr. Sharonrose Samelak, Chiropractic Physician

 

 

5 Things to Remember This Cold and Flu Season

I am so excited to co-blog this one with the wonderful Naturopaths from Clarity Natural Medicine in Fremont, Seattle! Check out their information below this post!

5 THINGS TO REMEMBER THIS COLD AND FLU SEASON

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Taking small actions in these 5 areas of your life can make a big difference for your wellness.

 

 

 

DIET DOs and DON’Ts:

Avoid eating common food allergens. If you know you have food allergies, now is not the time to ‘cheat’ because something tastes good or because the serving is very small. Any time you eat something you are allergic to, your body responds by attacking the food proteins in the same manner as it would attack a bacteria or a virus. This keeps your defense system is busy and may not allow for proper attention and resources to be spent on actual bacteria and viruses when they invade. If you do not know if you have any food allergies, it is still generally advised that you avoid consuming dairy products while you have the flu or a cold because they often cause the body to produce excess mucous.

fruits-320136_1280If you are sick or have been around people that were sick and wish to avoid falling ill, it is best to eat a whole foods diet- fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein sources. Avoid processed sugar and alcohol as these cause inflammation and depress immune system function.

WATER is your friend:

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During an illness, your number one job (other than resting) should be to maintain adequate hydration. Dehydration not only inhibits your immune system and lymph from circulating properly through your body tissues, but it also elevates your body temperature. Simple dehydration can cause a fever or cause an existing one to worsen. Additionally, consider that the mucous that drains from our nose, gets stuck in our ears or that builds up in our lungs is mostly water! When you are dehydrated, the mucous also dehydrates and becomes thicker and more difficult to get out.

 

MATTERS OF HYGEINE:

It’s not something we often think about, but many times our indoor air quality is more of a concern than the quality of our outdoor air. Persistent exposure to indoor mold, pet dander, dust and smoke irritates our mucous membranes (the lining of our nose, throat and lungs) also making it more likely that a bacteria or virus can invade. Clean and ventilate your home often. Avoiding second hand smoke and smoking counts helps, too. If you know you have a mold or dust allergy, consider installing an air filter in your home.  To reduce the spread of illness, wash your hands frequently and wipe down all shared surfaces: doorknobs, handles, children’s toys, even electronics.

CHIROPRACTIC CARE:

Chiropractic care can help you to combat both ear fullness and sinus congestion as well as boost the immune system.

The human body is an amazing machine. The anatomy of the head, face, and neck are closely related and can directly influence one another. Chiropractors utilize these relationships to help your stuffy sinuses drain or relieve pressure in your ears. The base of skull-31060the skull and the first bone in the neck, the atlas, can help the ears and sinuses drain by opening up the soft tissues in the throat. Sinuses are basically the spaces formed between the bones of the skull and can be gently manipulated to open up and improve drainage.

When working with the sinuses, gentle, rocking motions of the skull are combined with an adjustment to the upper neck and lymphatic drainage massage to maximize the efficacy of treatment. Most patients need a tissue within moments of their adjustment! This technique is gentle enough to use on little babies as well as their parents and grandparents.

One additional benefit of seeking out chiropractic care while sick is that an adjustment boosts the immune system.

The nervous system and, therefore, spine have a tremendous influence on the function of the immune system. In fact, one study demonstrates that Fighter T Cells work better for 24-48 hours after an adjustment for a review of literature click here. This means that getting adjusted regularly can help keep your immune system in top shape, but it also means that when you are sick, an adjustment can speed your recovery and help some of your symptoms.

PROPER SUPPLEMENTATION:

Nutritional and herbal supplements can help your immune system stay strong and are effective at helping fight colds or flus if one does come. While there are some overall recommendations that are safe for most people, such as extra vitamin C, elderberry syrup and probiotics, each individual has unique nutritional needs and immune system weaknesses that make a personalized treatment the best. Your naturopathic doctor or chiropractor can make specific treatment recommendations after discussing your past medical history and any current concerns in detail.

Hope you have learned a couple of new tricks from these tips!

Take a moment and check out Clarity Natural Medicine– I love having Dr. D and Dr. M as colleagues and friends!

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Clarity is the shared vision of Dr. Tamara Dickson and Dr. Kellyn Misser who provide individualized integrative care. At Clarity Natural Medicine, concerns are explored completely and options to care are presented fully.

Get Your Flu Adjustment Here!

woman-698943Flu season is generally considered to be present from October-February. Many of us have experienced that we are more likely to “catch” a cold during this time of year. Signs pop up for you to “Get Your Flu Shot Here”. (For more info about the flu shot click here).

But why?

Flu and cold viruses are no more prevalent in the environment in the winter months… so why do we get sick!?

During the winter, our lifestyle drastically changes. We are enclosed with more people in work/school and are outdoors less. This also means that our Vitamin D levels are probably low because we aren’t getting as much sun exposure. Vitamin D plays a role in immune system function as well as mood and Seasonal Affect Disorder.

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It’s also no secret that stress levels rise in the holiday season with travel, family, and increased demands on our time. The holidays are also a time of increased sugar consumption. A study performed by Loma Linda University in 1973 found that 100g of sugar correlates with white blood cells being 40% less effective at killing germs for up to 5 hours.

These factors and many more mean that we are far more susceptible to colds and flu.

Don’t. Panic.

There are simple steps you can take to boost your immune system and protect yourself during the winter (and year round).

  1. Get Your Flu Adjustment Here!

patient-adjustmentThe nervous system and, therefore, spine have a tremendous influence on the function of the immune system. In fact, one study demonstrates that Fighter T Cells work better for 24-48 hours after an adjustment for a review of literature click here.

This means that getting adjusted regularly can help keep your immune system in top shape.BUT it also means that when you are sick, an adjustment can speed your recovery.

2. Monitor Your Sugar Intake

cake-727870It is recommended that women consume no more than 28g of added sugar, daily. By cutting sugary drinks, like pop and sports drinks, and keeping an eye on your cookie and dessert consumption you can improve your overall health and keep yourself from getting sick. If you want to learn more about sugar, join our book club which is reading Sugar Nation this January.

3. Get Your Vitamin D Levels Checked!

Vitamin D is essential for many bodily processes. Living far North of the equator, many of us are deficient in Vitamin D year round- and our levels plummet in the winter months. I love Biotics Vitamin D drops for easy and safe supplementation for both children and adults.

Is there a topic you would like to see me discuss?

What are your favorite ways to keep your immune system boosted?

Comment below!

New Year, New You- What about your personal health?

If you haven’t done it yet, now is the time to plan out your 2017 goals.

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And not just make a resolution. That isn’t enough. According to Forbes, only 8% of people actually keep their New Year’s Resolution.

Why is this? In my opinion, people make lofty goals without a lot of planning behind them. It is easy to say that you are going to take off 5 pounds or 50 this year, but what are the action steps?

I have a few ideas on how to be one of the 8%. The past couple of years I have employed several tools to help me make goals and keep them.

  • Use a planner! I use the Passion Planner and have for the past 2 years. I just got my 2017 one and am excited to use the tools within it to map out my 2017 successes.
    • One great thing about this planner is that the website has printable pages. If you have a planner you love and just want strategy sheets, you can print them out and use them
    • I also love how this planner has you do a monthly reflection that checks back in with your goals to see how you are doing
  • Reflect on your past year before making your goals.
    • I am using this format to reflect on 2016 as well as the tools within my Passion Planner
    • Take some time and get quiet and real with yourself about how 2016 was for you as a year.
  • Dream Big and make an action plan
    • I have a running list of “I Wants”
      • These aren’t things that are material so much as what do I want for myself, my business, my family, my relationships, etc
      • Whenever I am feeling stuck, I come back to What Do I Want? and get clear on that
    • A list only does you good if you plan how to achieve these things (circle back to the Passion Planner)
  • Make yourself a priority.
    • You cannot pour from an empty cup, so what will fulfill you?
  • Be well rounded
    • I am a little biased (being in the healthcare field) and feel like health is a major priority, but it is really easy to focus on weight, energy, etc and forget that health is multifaceted. Below are just a few aspects.
      • Physical
        • I can tell you one thing for certain, Chiropractic can make a huge difference in your physical health… It has turned my life around and allowed me to be a healthier, happier person that is evolving each year. This year I am healthier than ever before. My health strategy has shifted and changed along with my priorities and, year by year, I am finding out more about myself and my needs.
      • Emotional
        • What feeds your soul?
        • What is congruent with what you need in your life to be fulfilled?
      • Social
        • How can you improve your relationships with family, friends, coworkers, and MOST IMPORTANTLY yourself?

How can I help you with these things? Please fill out the form below if you would like my assistance with your health goals.

 

 

 

 

Your knee pain may not be knee pain.

One of the most valuable things I use in my chiropractic exam is functional screening, which is looking at how the body’s joints move. It gives me insight into patterns of motion that can result in pain and dysfunction. For example, the knee is particularly vulnerable to altered biomechanics in other parts of the body.

The knee is, most basically, a hinge.

Because of this, it is significantly affected by the biomechanics of the hip, pelvis, and ankle/foot. Joint restrictions and/or muscular imbalances in these areas are incredibly common from everyday activities like sitting, improper footwear, or repetetive activities. The patterns that we create in our everyday life change the way our joints move and can cause stress in joints and tissues that are farther away.

For example, when the gluteus medius muscle is weak or inhibited (not firing when or how we want it to), it does not properly compress the hip joint. This causes the thigh bone, or femur, to change its angle, resulting in increased pressure on the inner part of the knee joint. The medial/inside part of the knee is usually the first place that arthritis shows up on x-ray of the knee. Slight narrowing of the joint (inside the circle below) is the first physical indicator that the knee is under stress.

knee-xray

Clinically, knee issues show up as pain! Remember, knee pain may not be a problem with the knee!

As a chiropractor, I evaluate to see which muscles or joints are impacting the function of the knee and work with you to strengthen or stretch them appropriately. Many times it is the gluteus medius, but can also be a number of other muscles or tissues.

When it comes to aches and pains, it is important to have a professional evaluate your mechanics for you- you cannot appropriately assess yourself. Only when you know what the true problem is, can you correct it with exercises, stretches, and joint manipulation. Otherwise you can create new problems!

I am a prime example of this. When I was working on my internship to complete my Masters in Sport Science and Rehabilitation, I spent many hours each week in a PT clinic helping to evaluate patients and work with them on their exercises. Thinking that I was helping myself, I did all of the exercises with the patients. In 4 months, I had increased my knee pain, given myself plantar fascitis, and irritated my pelvic joints. Not all of those exercises were appropriate for my body and its previous sports injuries. It took being evaluated for my own movement patterns and months of diligent corrective exercises to undo what I thought was going to help me.

Understanding how your body works and starting from a basic analysis can help to diagnose problem areas and correct problems before they begin. Pain is a warning sign that something is not right within the body. Before you cover it up or dismiss your pain, get assessed and see what can be done to strengthen and support your body.

References:

SBR Sport

Dr. Dooley Noted

 

3 Chiropractic Myths- Busted!

There are a lot of misconceptions about chiropractic care and chiropractors floating around… Today, I am going to tackle 3 of the Chiropractic Myths I hear most often:

Once you go to a chiropractor, you have to go FOREVER.

patient-adjustment

Most people seek out chiropractic care when they are in a lot of pain or have an issue they would like to resolve. Chiropractors are fantastic at taking care of low back pain, headaches, whiplash associated disorder, thoracic outlet syndrome, etc. Usually, these conditions can be taken care of with a single treatment plan combined with exercises, chiropractic adjustments, and nutrition.

But what happens then?

Once you have seen a chiropractor, you become more aware of your body and how it moves. Often, the condition that brings people into the chiropractor have been a long time coming and they don’t even remember what it’s like to truly feel good.When things are moving well, you are feeling great. This is a common awareness in chiropractic patients. These patients progress from acute care- where we target a major condition or problem- to corrective care.

Corrective care focuses on helping to identify, target, and eliminate movement patterns or postures that were behind the low back pain or headaches. This type of care can take a bit of time to work through, depending on how diligent home exercises are performed and how long the problem has been going on.

Following this, some patients elect to continue seeing their chiropractor periodically to prevent future issues and to be checked for wellness. This is the part where people tend to say that you go FOREVER. However, as humans, we are very complex machines that come into contact with all kinds of challenges from long flights, to tech neck from working on computers, to falls and athletic injuries. Many people choose to get checked periodically to ensure that they are doing well and have nothing brewing underneath the surface. But this is their choice!

Chiropractors aren’t REAL doctors.

Chiropractors undergo graduate education to achieve the degree Doctor of Chiropractic (DC). While chiropractors do not treat patients using drugs or surgery, our education is comparable to that of Medical Doctors (MD). In fact, our core studies are just about the same! Click here for a breakdown of the course requirements for DC vs MD students.

Chiropractors are trained in anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pathology, clinical diagnosis, etc; however, our training in treatment involves learning how to adjust the spine and other joints of the body, work with soft tissues, and implement clinical nutrition.

One thing that I feel it is important to emphasize is that chiropractors are especially well trained in recognizing when pain is not coming from the joints or the spine, but from another area. For example, sometimes right shoulder blade pain is referred from a hot gallbladder. In this case, the patient is often referred to an MD, DO, or ND for further evaluation and intervention. This is especially important because many common organ conditions cause back pain, causing people to seek chiropractic care.

In conclusion, Chiropractors are REAL doctors, just not medical doctors 🙂

Chiropractic Adjustments HURT

As I mentioned above, many times pain is the main driver that causes someone to seek out chiropractic care. If you have ever had back pain, you understand that sometimes it is painful to even have your clothes touch the area that is injured. It is understandable, then, that a chiropractic adjustment may be uncomfortable in that area.

However, an adjustment is not, generally painful. I have made a point, in my education, to learn many techniques. This includes one  that uses less pressure than you would be comfortable with on your own eyelid (Did you just push on your eyelid?) as well as instrument adjusting.

When a patient is in pain, I work to make my adjustment as comfortable as possible- sometimes using cold or heat to relax the area before adjusting.

Most patients report mild to no discomfort throughout their adjustments- in fact the majority experience a sense of relief almost immediately.

What is something that you have heard about chiropractic care?

Stay tuned for more Myth-Busting about Chiropractic care!

 

 

 

 

Chiropractic Helps Low Back Pain in Pregnancy

Pregnancy is one of the most exciting and amazing experiences in a woman’s life. During pregnancy, her body changes and blossoms as it accommodates the tiny human that is being built. This process is beautiful. Somewhat uncomfortable, but beautiful. Most women, however, don’t know that chiropractic care can greatly improve some of the aches and pains commonly associated with pregnancy.

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As a Doctor of Chiropractic, I have taken advanced training in the analysis and treatment of pregnant women. It is one of the greatest honors afforded me by my patients- the trust that I will take care of them and their growing family. The tremendous changes that a woman’s body undergoes while pregnant (and in the months directly following birth- have you ever tried to carry a car seat!?) cause altered biomechanics and stress that can result in headaches, low back pain, lack of mid back mobility with a feeling of shortness  of breath, pain into the leg(s), etc. Using the Webster technique, as well as modifying other techniques including Sacro-Occipital Technique, Applied Kinesiology, and Diversified, I apply gentle corrections to the spine and soft tissues. Women with malpositioned babies often seek chiropractic care to help balance their bodies as well- for more information on this check out my prenatal page.

Today, I came across a research article with full text available here, that outlines a study performed on pregnant women with low back pain during pregnancy. To summarize, below are the Results and Conclusions part of the abstract:

Results

52% of 115 recruited patients ‘improved’ at 1 week, 70% at 1 month, 85% at 3 months, 90% at 6 months and 88% at 1 year. There were significant reductions in NRS and Oswestry scores (p < 0.0005). Category of previous LBP episodes number at one year (p = 0.02) was related to ,improvement’ when analyzed alone, but was not strongly predictive in logistic regression. Patients with more prior LBP episodes had higher 1 year NRS scores (p = 0.013).

Conclusions

Most pregnant patients undergoing chiropractic treatment reported clinically relevant improvement at all time points. No single variable was strongly predictive of, improvement’ in the logistic regression model.

What fantastic results! Chiropractic care provides statistically significant results in the treatment of low back pain in pregnant women- including at the 1 year mark!

If you are interested in learning more about prenatal chiropractic and/or having your questions answered, please feel free to reach out to me for a consultation or referral to a provider close to you!

Helping to keep Mommas healthy is a passion of mine that I bring to Seed of Life. Stay tuned for future posts about chiropractic care and overall health…

Gratitude… More than just a holiday?

It is upon us! Thanksgiving is in just a couple of short days and, while the original historical background of Thanksgiving is controversial, it remains my favorite holiday. If we look at Thanksgiving in completely modern terms it has become a holiday of excess. Too much food. Shopping instead of family. Capitalism. Overall, it has been a holiday celebrating successful harvest, has been called a holiday commemorating the beginning of the persecution of the Native Americans, has been about a giant rock on the East Coast, getting great deals on shopping, gluttony, and- I am going to propose- Gratitude.

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Gratitude is the main reason Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It is a time for family and friends to gather together over a meal (modest or grand) and be grateful for the blessings of the year and for each other. Gratitude is a choice and by choosing to express it, we improve ourselves.

I was reading an article in the New York times about gratitude that cited studies demonstrating that people are genuinely happier when they choose gratitude. Not to mention that the brain, when studied with fMRI actually fires differently for pride and gratitude than with anger or jealousy. This indicates that we have the ability to use neuroplasticity to change our brains to be wired for gratitude.

What could this mean for us!? As individuals, choosing to be thankful and positive means enriching our own lives. As members of society, making this same choice means that those around us benefit from our gratitude. When we elevate the positive, we tip the balance in favor of light.

As the great Martin Luther King, Jr said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

It can be difficult to choose gratitude when things seem dark or hard. I mentioned on Facebook last week, one way to choose gratitude is to remind ourselves. You can use a gratitude journal where you list 3 things you are grateful for each morning. (I like to enhance this with 3 things that I am excited about and also 1 thing I will do for myself that day) Sometimes this is incredibly hard and I fall back on some classic things to be grateful for like family, shelter, education, my silly cats. Other times I am truly moved by the world around me into a place of profound gratitude and I can’t stop at 3. My planner also has a column for “Good Things That Happened” AKA Gratitude!!! If structured journaling isn’t your thing, try creating a list like this that contains things that are positive from your life/week. One of the benefits of writing it down is this: when times are the hardest or things seem to be the darkest, you can look back and see all that you have to be grateful for.

Choosing gratitude is more than a holiday, though Thanksgiving is an excellent excuse to start your practice. If you happen to be at my house for Thanksgiving, on the table is a sheet of brown paper and crayons instead of place mats. This provides an excellent excuse ample opportunity to make hand turkeys or to write down what you have to be grateful for.

I am thankful for so many things and people in my life- I am even thankful for you (whether we have met or not).

Chiropractic Care for Kids

Wait… You adjust kids?

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This is one of the questions I get most often in practice. People are more and more accepting of chiropractic for adults and conditions like headaches and low back pain. In fact, statistically, chiropractic is a top treatment for these things. However, it seems that people are taken aback at the idea of children getting adjusted.

Let me tell you a little bit about pediatric chiropractic.

Why would a child or infant need an adjustment?

Birth is a traumatic process. When you think about it, the last days and weeks of pregnancy the baby does not grow very much, most of what is occurring at this point is development of the lungs and other organs. This means that the baby is tucked into a little ball inside of mom. Then, when labor happens, they are pushed out through a small hole and someone grabs their head and pulls them out. If you have questions, try watching a video of a C-Section.  Often times the birth process causes the upper neck or the tailbone to be subluxated, causing nerve interference. Some more extreme cases result in shoulder dystocia or torticollis.

Subluxations from birth can cause issues with many things such as the latch in breast feeding. The baby’s face may appear asymmetrical or their head always tipped to one side. Others are very subtle and may result in colic, difficulty sleeping, etc. Pediatricians are not trained to evaluate the spine for the subluxation, so it is recommended that parents take their children to a chiropractor to be checked.

As children learn to crawl and walk, they fall upwards of 25 times per day. It is important for them to be checked regularly at this time to ensure that they do not develop subluxations from these falls. The trips and tumbles of childhood often result in muscle tension and imbalance in the spine. Many parents bring their children to be checked on a regular basis during the toddler years. Then child and adolescent sports throw yet another variable into the mix!

How does a Chiropractor check a child?

When I evaluate an infant or child for subluxation, I take a history of the child from pregnancy through present to learn as much as I can about their live- down to food preferences and developmental milestones. In my exam, I check all of the little one’s reflexes and evaluate ranges of motion and balance in the body. The amount of pressure that is used both in evaluation and adjustment is less than you would be comfortable with on your own eyelid. Many babies sleep through the whole process!

What is a pediatric adjustment like?

Pediatric and infant adjustments are very gentle and, like the evaluation, many infants sleep through them. Using gentle pressures and muscle stretches, I restore normal motion to the bones and restore balance to the muscles. Sometimes, I will ask the parents to assist by laying their child on their stomach or holding them while they are adjusted.

Toddler adjustments are always fun to watch. Many children enjoy laying on the table to be adjusted and relax for the whole thing, while others play on the floor and get checked on the move. I always feel that it is important to make sure that kids are comfortable and engaged in their adjustment, so I meet them on their level.

Adjusting little ones is vastly different from adjusting adults. The pace is much slower and it often looks like playing to onlookers.

How do I know if my child needs to be checked by a Doctor of Chiropractic?

Many parents bring their children in to be checked when they exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Spinal or facial asymmetry
  • Difficult latch in breast feeding
  • Colic
  • Reflux
  • Delayed or absent milestones
  • Ear pulling
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Sleep issues
  • Bedwetting
  • Trips and falls

It is important to understand that chiropractors do not treat colic, reflux, ear infections, or other medical conditions. However, interference in the nervous system from subluxations can present in these ways. By restoring motion in the spine and removing the interference, the body has the opportunity to heal on its own.

Looking for more information? Check out ICPA4kids.org or contact our office at SeedOfLifeChiro.com

 

 

Chiropractic as Part of a Healthy Lifestyle

Chiropractic as Part of a Healthy Lifestyle

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I often hear from patients that they are feeling good, so they don’t need to be checked. While I am happy to hear that they are not having pain, I always stress that it is important to have someone assess your movement and your spine a couple of times a year (minimum) to ensure that there is nothing just over the horizon.

Many people associate chiropractic care with low back pain, headaches, or neck pain. What they fail to realize is that many of these things (if not all) are preventable not inevitable. Many times the way that we move in daily life is not biomechanical.

What the heck does that mean? The curves in the spine begin to develop as soon as a baby starts to gain muscular control over their head and lift it up. Crawling and other developmental stages help to build your spine into the shape that it is as an adult. Basically, we are born with a C-shaped spine that develops into 3 distinct curves in the neck, mid back, and low back. Throughout this same process, we also build patterns into our brains that help our muscles support the skeleton in different motions.

Over time through minor and major falls, injuries, too much sitting, text neck, and so much more, our body builds compensation patterns to make up for what we cannot do perfectly. You can live for many years with a compensation pattern before another straw lands on the camel’s back and you have a major issue. This is why you will often hear, “I picked up a pencil and threw out my back!” Odds are it was not the pencil, but the lifting and bending pattern that had been present for many years.

As chiropractors, we are trained to analyze the body and pick out these patterns for correction. I am lucky to combine my chiropractic training with the training in biomechanics and rehabilitation learned in my Masters of Sport Science and Rehabilitation to help you to be as stable and balanced as possible.

This does, however, mean HOMEWORK. I was really happy to think I left homework behind me when I walked across that last stage to get my diploma… but then I learned that the most important homework is not what is on your desk or computer. It is the corrective exercises that are assigned to retrain your brain and your posture. Chiropractically, I can perform an adjustment to the spine or to a joint and normalize its motion; however, if you return to doing things exactly the way that you have always done them it will just go back out of balance.

My main goal is to have my patients not need me for pain relief but to get checked periodically to ensure that their home exercises are still appropriate, that their body is holding its balance, and that they are making progress.

Is there something you would like me to write about? Drop a comment on this page or on Facebook to suggest a future blog topic!