All Posts By

Michael Beattie

Care for scoliosis, shoulder pain and brain function.

By Newsletter

Health-E-News August 2016
empowering you to optimal health

The Role of Chiropractic Care in the Management of a Child’s Scoliosis

Idiopathic scoliosis is defined as a side-ways curvature of the spine greater than 10 degrees and has no known cause. The effects of scoliosis go beyond back pain and may include psychological distress, decreased respiratory function, changes in biomechanics and movement, and it can give rise to other debilitating conditions. Typical courses of management include physical therapy, monitoring with self-care, use of back braces, and surgical intervention in severe cases. Chiropractic is a vital role in the management of scoliosis by removing as much stress as possible to the fragile spinal joints.

A 10-year old female came to a chiropractic clinic complaining of migraines accompanied by dizziness, pain behind the right eye, loss of flexibility, shoulder tightness, and ringing in her ears while reading. Tylenol and rest were her go-to remedies; however the migraines would still occur 2-3 times per week. The initial findings of her x-rays and postural assessment showed a lateral curvature in her thoracic spine (area between shoulder blades) of 35 degrees, indicating moderate scoliosis. These were concurrent with the results of an x-ray performed by an orthopedist a month earlier. Other findings included a leg length difference of ¼ inch with the left leg being shorter, as well as a shift in her right shoulder and hip.

Over the course of six months, adjustments were delivered followed by a reassessment of leg length and posture to monitor the changes after the course of care. The child had x-rays taken for the same orthopedist she saw before beginning chiropractic care to monitor the progression of the scoliosis. The medical radiologist found the curve had decreased by 10 degrees, and was now a 25 degree curvature. There was a decreased frequency of migraines with a 75% symptom reduction, improved neck range of motion, as well as a balanced right hip and shoulder.

An upper cervical subluxation could affect the flow of information from the brain to the body about posture, proprioception, and balance which may have caused the distortion in her spine. In six months, there was a 10 degree reduction in curvature and many other benefits to the symptoms she had been experiencing. Continued chiropractic care may help further reduce the curvature and alleviate her migraines by affecting the subluxation in the upper cervical region.

Chung, J., & Salminen, B. (2011). Reduction in Scoliosis in a 10 Year Old Female Undergoing Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care: A Case Report. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal, and Family Health, 2011(1), 23-30.

 

What’s The 2nd Highest Risk For Early Death?

Being out of shape is a bigger risk for early death than either high blood pressure or high cholesterol, finds a large new study. In fact, the only thing worse for longevity was smoking, the study found.

The study, which spanned 45 years, was published Tuesday in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

In 1967, at 54 years of age, the 792 men did an exercise test. Of those, 656 men also did a maximum exercise test in which they pushed themselves to the limit. The remaining men were excluded from the maximum exercise test because they had a health condition that could make it unsafe.

The studies determined the men’s VO2 max, or maximal oxygen uptake, as a way to measure their aerobic capacity. The higher the VO2 max, the more physically fit the men were.

The men underwent several physical examinations every 10 years until 2012, when they would have reached 100 years old. Data on their cause of death was obtained from the National Cause of Death Registry.

“The benefits of being physically active over a lifetime are clear,” said lead author Dr Per Ladenvall, a researcher in the Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

“Low physical capacity is a greater risk for death than high blood pressure or high cholesterol.”

Original Report

If back pain, neck pain or spinal pain in general is preventing you from exercising, call us. Chiropractic can help you live a long and healthy life.

 

Another Study Shows How Chiropractic Helps Shoulder Pain

The term frozen shoulder does not refer to temperature, but is a condition involving great pain and reduced range of motion in the shoulder accompanied by inflammation and stiffness.

Traditional first line approaches to treating this condition involve nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs combined with activity modification and physical therapy. If these do not work, more invasive treatments such as injections with local anesthetics and corticosteroids are prescribed. Many of these options involve looking at the shoulder itself without considering the root of the problem.

A 51 year old male presented right shoulder pain with restricted range of motion that began two days ago without any known trauma or overuse. Following examination, upper cervical adjustments were used as a trial of care. After the first adjustment, the client noted a significant reduction in pain and increased shoulder range of motion. Upon the fourth visit, the client indicated continued improvement in both pain and range of motion.

Often times the problems and symptoms are indications of a deeper problem elsewhere in the body. Subluxations of the upper cervical region of the spine may affect the function of nerves that pass through this area, including the nerves that are involved in moving the shoulder and arm. Adjustments to this portion of the spine can enhance the natural healing properties of the body to restore optimal function.

Shin, M. & Alcantra, J., (2015). Resolution of Frozen Shoulder Following Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care to Reduce Vertebral Subluxation. Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research, 2015(4), 213-216.

 

Chiropractic Does Affect Brain Function

We do know that spinal function does affect brain function. A recent study, published in the Journal of Neural Plasticity provides solid evidence that adjusting the spine changes brain function. This is the fourth time that the effect of adjusting the spine has on the brain has been studied.

This study indicates that adjustments impact the function of the prefrontal cortex. The significance of this finding is that the prefrontal cortex is the ‘conductor’ in the brain, controlling many functions within the body.

Such a finding can explain many of the previous findings of Chiropractic’s effects such as improvements in sensorimotor function relevant to falls-prevention; better joint-position sense in both the upper limb and the lower limb; improved muscle strength in lower limb muscles; better pelvic floor control; and better ability to carry out mental rotation of objects.

If, as this research suggests, adjusting improves prefrontal cortex activity, a part of the brain that is responsible for just so much higher level function, then what does this mean in terms of chiropractic’s impact on things like behaviour, decision making, memory and attention, intelligence, processing of pain and emotional responses, and more.

This study showed that Chiropractic care doesn’t just alter brain function a little, it increases the prefrontal cortex activity by 20%! This means every time you receive a Chiropractic adjustment, the part of the brain that is responsible for ‘higher level functions’ is being stimulated, increasing body awareness and allowing your body to function at a much higher level.

Lelic et al. “Manipulation of dysfunctional spinal joints affects sensorimotor integration in the pre-frontal cortex: A brain source localization study,” Neural Plasticity, Volume 2016. Original Report

Shoulder Pain? Headaches? Chiropractic can help.

By Newsletter

Health-E-News July 2016
empowering you to optimal health

Shoulder Pain? Chiropractic Can Help

If you suffer from chronic shoulder pain and your range of motion is restricted, chiropractic care can help.

Shoulder pain is a common complaint amongst individuals. It is attributed to a number of causes, which can include the single onset or a combination of: tears in the rotator cuff muscles, overuse of the muscles, bursitis, adhesive capsulitis, tendinitis, impingement syndrome, avascular necrosis, osteoarthritis, or from traumatic injury. The condition can cause significant pain and can restrict range of motion in the effected shoulder.

The patient is a 55 year-old male who presented for chiropractic care with a complaint of pain in his right shoulder after falling from a 10-foot ladder. He had been experiencing the pain over a 7-month period. He had previously been taking medication that only provided short-term pain relief. During the Range of Motion (ROM) examination, the patient was distressed due to pain. He demonstrated restricted ROM in abduction and flexion, and reported pain at the rotator cuff muscles.

The patient received four adjustments over a period of two weeks. The patient’s full ROM in the shoulder returned after the first visit, and the ROM was maintained for the next three visits. The patient had no further complaints, so he did not require or continue further care. After just one visit to the Chiropractor, his ROM was restored. This demonstrates the power of Chiropractic Care.

Alcantara, Joey., Alcantara, Joel & Alcantara, Junjoe. (2014). Upper Cervical Care of Patients with Chronic Shoulder Pain and Restriction in Motion: A Case Series. Journal of Upper Cervical Research- Chiropractic4, (3).

If you have tried traditional medical care for shoulder pain without success, know that there are numerous studies that demonstrate how Chiropractic can help those who suffer with shoulder pain.

 

How Effective Is Chiropractic Care For The Treatment Of Headaches?

Very!

Research has shown that the Chiropractic care is incredibly effective in treating headaches that are caused by neck problems. In 2014, the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics (JMPT) stated that chiropractic treatment often results in marked improvement in patients with chronic neck pain and headaches originating from neck problems.

Some headaches are caused by a triggers such as: lights, stress, noise, foods, insomnia, changes in blood sugar, and more. Of the different classifications of headaches, “primary” headaches include cluster, migraine and tension headaches; and it is these types of headaches that Chiropractic typically helps.

Most primary headaches are due to tension, stress and irritation to the neck muscles and nerves. Inactive lifestyles, poor posture, and mis-alignment of the neck vertebrae all cause irritation of the nerves in the neck. It’s when these nerves become irritated, they cause muscle tension, neck pain and headaches.

Chiropractors check the alignment of the bones in your neck, ensuring they are moving properly and not causing nerve irritation. When the vertebrae, or bones, in the neck are moving properly, the irritation to the nerves is eliminated, allowing the muscles and body function smoothly.

Other than Chiropractic, frequent movement is crucial if you spend a lot of time in one position. If you sit in front of a computer, for instance, getting up and moving every 30-60 minutes is perfect to reduce the tension in your neck. Even going for a walk at lunch is a perfect activity to help loosen up the tight muscles and joints in your neck.

One of the most sought after forms of alternative healing is Chiropractic care. Amongst cancer survivors who seek chiropractic therapy, 84% do so to alleviate pain, improve mood and sleeping habits, as well as to relieve stress.

 

Top Benefits Of Seeing A Chiropractor

The purpose of Chiropractic treatment is not only to relieve pain, but to improve quality of life by alleviating systemic problems relating to muscles and the central nervous system. Given the researched benefits of chiropractic care, it is likely that you or someone you know could benefit from this alternative therapy.

Here are the top 10 reasons why almost anyone can benefit from chiropractic therapy:

  1. Elevates Sports Performance
  2. Reduces Headaches
  3. Stimulates the Immune System
  4. Wellness & Prevention – treats underlying health problems
  5. Alleviates Allergies & Asthma
  6. Pregnancy – balancing the muscles, pelvis, and ligaments to relieve pressure on the uterus
  7. Mitigates Chronic Pain
  8. Manages Behavioral and Learning Disabilities
  9. Weakens Dependence on Medication and Medical Interventions
  10. Normalizes Blood Pressure

 

Original Article

 

Have High Blood Pressure? Chiropractic Can Help

Over the last few years, the leading cause of death in North America is cardiovascular disease. This is alarming because issues related to heart health are highly preventable. Individuals at risk of cardiovascular diseases can be assessed based on measurements such as blood pressure. Blood pressure is the necessary force that the cardiovascular system generates to circulate blood throughout the body. Normal blood pressure is measured to be 120/80 mmHg. Whereas, high blood pressure or hypertension, is classified as having multiple blood pressure measurements of ≥ 140/90 mmHg in resting conditions. Hypertension indicates a greater stress and an increase in demand for the heart to work at rest. The cardiovascular system has to work harder when arteries are narrowed or blocked. Thus, individuals with hypertension are at risk for heart attacks and other heart conditions.

A 57 year old male patient with hypertension had been taking medication for his condition for five years. Without experiencing any improvements from taking medication, he sought out chiropractic care. He then received regular Chiropractic care while continuing to monitor his to monitor his blood pressure. After his eighth visit, his blood pressure improved by 70% relative to his initial visit. Following two months of regular adjustments, the patient’s blood pressure has been reduced to 120-130/80-90 mmHg. Hethen stopped the medication and chose to continue on with Chiropractic care.

Blood pressure is regulated by areas of the brain stem. Chiropractic adjustments to the upper cervical spine, which is located at the base of the brain stem, has been shown to reduce hypertension without the use of medication. Chiropractic care aids the restoration of healthy bodily functions to reduce the risk of disease.

Jonathan Chung D.C., Justin Brown D.C., Joseph Bursa D.C. Resolution of Hypertension Following Reduction of Upper Cervical Vertebral Subluxation. Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research. 2014; 1: 1-6.

Doing these 4 things dramatically reduce your risk of cancer

By Newsletter

Health-E-News June 2016
empowering you to optimal health

Chiropractic helps relieve pain of 30 year old pregnant nurse with a baby in a malposition

If you would wish the constant pains with pregnancy would go away, or know of someone who does, Chiropractic is definitely something to consider.

Pregnancy can cause a lot of stress on the body. It causes the release of several hormones in the body which change many internal structures to accommodate the growing baby. This includes the loosening of many joints around the pelvis, as well as causing the pelvis to tilt. These structural changes position the body in an unusual way that the body is not quite made for, causing the muscles to take up more work to also accommodate this. Much pain stems from these now overworking muscles, resulting in pelvic or low back pain.

In this case, a thirty-year-old nurse was brought to see a Chiropractor at 34 weeks of pregnancy, with her baby lying in her stomach in an unfavourable orientation. She expressed a variety of pain-related issues including: sharp left hip pain and right sided sciatica which increased when she stood up after sitting for long periods of time. It was noted that her previous child was delivered with extensive back labour.

Within a short time and routine of Chiropractic care her hip, leg, lower back, and pelvic pains subsided, and it was noted her child turned from the unfavourable orientation to a more favourable one for child birthing. She gave birth to the child without serious back labour or serious complications.

Alcantara, J., & Edwards, J., (2015) The Chiropractic Care of a Pregnant Patient Experiencing Multiple Fetal Positional Changes. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal, & Family Health –Chiropractic 4, 4(2)

 

Roughly Half of all Cancer Deaths Could Be Eliminated By Doing These Four Things

Roughly half of cancer deaths in the United States could be prevented or forestalled if people quit smoking, cut back on drinking, maintained a healthful weight and got at least 150 minutes of exercise each week, according to a new report.

These same measures would also reduce the number of new cancer diagnoses by 40% to 70%.

For men, universal embrace of this lifestyle could avert or delay 67% of cancer deaths and prevent 63% of new malignancies each year, researchers calculated. If all of the nation’s women did the same, their yearly cancer mortality rates would fall by 59% and new cancers would drop 41%

The findings, published online this week in the journal JAMA Oncology, underscore how extensively public health measures aimed at fostering healthful lifestyles could cut into a disease that will claim the lives of 600,000 Americans this year and upend the lives of 1.6 million by turning them into newly diagnosed patients.

The effect of a healthful lifestyle varied according to gender and cancer type. For instance, women who followed the strictures on smoking, drinking, weight and exercise could reduce their lung cancer risk by 85% and their colorectal cancer risk by 60%. For men, the corresponding figures were 90% and 50%.

The results suggest the most effective way to fight cancer is to promote healthful habits that foster cancer prevention.

Original Report

 

Sadly, Even Children Suffer From Headaches

If your child or a friend’s suffers from headaches, Chiropractic can help.

People tend to think that painful headaches only affect teenagers and adults, sadly that isn’t the case. Some research has shown as many as 30% of children younger than 7 suffer from headaches. Fortunately, Chiropractic can help children as much as it can help adults who suffer from headaches.

A six-year-old boy suffering from headaches began a program of Chiropractic care, receiving a total of 10 visits. The child suffered from chronic headaches of two years duration before beginning Chiropractic care. Prior to Chiropractic care, the child had used standard medical over-the-counter ibuprofen. Unfortunately the medication did not help. A magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan and a computer tomography (CT) scan could not address the issue at hand, nor did a consultation with a neurologist.

The pediatrician suggested the mother and patient seek chiropractic care. During the Chiropractor’s examination, it was determined that the child suffered from subluxations in his neck. After the 5th visit, the patient no longer reported experiencing any headaches.

The article highlights the impact of Chiropractic care. It took over two years before the thought of Chiropractic intervention was introduced. Society is so reliant in medicine and drugs that we forget the alternative, and less intrusive, medical interventions. Before looking into additional invasive medical tests, it’s recommend to seek safe, alternative care options, such as Chiropractic.

Ryan Olsen, D.C.1& Joel Alcantara, D.C. Resolution of Chronic Cervicogenic Headaches in 6-Year-Old Male Following Care Directed at Vertebral Subluxations: A Case Report. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic ~ Volume 2014 ~ Issue 4 ~ Pages 81-86

Your posture, the health of your spine, and diet all play a vital role in your health. If you are suffering with headaches, or back pain, seek safe care options like Chiropractic.

There Is A Single Nerve That Connects All Of Your Vital Organs

Chiropractors have known for over 100 years, that a healthy nerve system is vital for health. A recent article written from a neurologist has some interesting insights.

Kevin Tracey, a neurosurgeon based in New York, is a man with a mission. “My mother died from a brain tumor when I was five years old. It was very sudden and unexpected,” he says. “And I learned from that experience that the brain – nerves – are responsible for health.”

In the late 1990s, Tracey was experimenting with a rat’s brain. “We’d injected an anti-inflammatory drug into the brain because we were studying the beneficial effect of blocking inflammation during a stroke,” he recalls. “We were surprised to find that when the drug was present in the brain, it also blocked inflammation in the spleen and in other organs in the rest of the body. Yet the amount of drug we’d injected was far too small to have got into the bloodstream and traveled to the rest of the body.”

After months puzzling over this, he finally hit upon the idea that the brain might be using the nervous system – specifically the vagus nerve – to tell the spleen to switch off inflammation everywhere.

It was an extraordinary idea – if Tracey was right, inflammation in body tissues was being directly regulated by the brain. Communication between the immune system’s specialist cells in our organs and bloodstream and the electrical connections of the nervous system had been considered impossible. Now Tracey was apparently discovering that the two systems were intricately linked.

The vagus nerve was determined to be one of the vital nerves within your nerve system. It travels down each side of the neck, across the chest and down through the abdomen. ‘Vagus’ is Latin for ‘wandering’ and indeed this bundle of nerve fibres roves through the body, networking the brain with the stomach and digestive tract, the lungs, heart, spleen, intestines, liver and kidneys, not to mention a range of other nerves that are involved in speech, eye contact, facial expressions and even your ability to tune in to other people’s voices.

The vagus nerve is made of thousands and thousands of fibres and 80 per cent of them are sensory, meaning that the vagus nerve reports back to your brain what is going on in your organs.

Operating far below the level of our conscious minds, the vagus nerve is vital for keeping our bodies healthy.

Chiropractors check the alignment and movement of the cervical (neck) vertebrae in order to ensure the vagus nerve is functioning optimally, thus keeping your body healthy.