Tuesday, September 9, 2014

"I've Had Spinal Surgery. Can Chiropractic Help Me Now?"

We get a lot of questions about spinal surgery and whether or not chiropractic can help a patient who still suffers from low back pain following their surgery.

Most of the time with patients who have had previous spinal surgery and still have back pain chiropractic can help! A recent study published in the Journal of Manipulate Therapy (J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2011 Jul-Aug;34(6):408-12.) found that patients who had a "failed back surgery" received significant relief in pain with chiropractic care with no adverse effects.

The doctors at Christopher Chiropractic have experience with managing many patients who have had previous spinal surgery. They take great care to make sure that each and every patient's treatment is tailored specifically to their spine and their needs by using low force instrument adjusting and none rotational techniques.

With patients who have had spinal surgery in the past it is important for the chiropractors do a few things for the patient before care begins including: a complete medical history with review of past records, review of imaging and surgical notes, a current spinal examination, and current imaging. Imaging is necessary with a patient who has had a previous spinal surgery especially if no recent pictures have been taken of the spine, there has been a recent accident or trauma to the spine, or there is hardware in the spine from the surgery.

If you have had back surgery and still suffer from pain or if you just have back pain and wonder if chiropractic can benefit you call (606) 549-4811 today to schedule your appointment or speak with one of our doctors about care.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Old Fashioned Trading Days

Stop by and visit the Christopher Chiropractic tent at Williamsburg's Old Fashioned Trading Days this weekend. Grab some water, get a massage and chat with our providers. Thursday, September 4, 2014 - Saturday, September 6, 2014.

Christopher Chiropractic. Feel better. Enjoy life.

*You have the right to rescind, within seventy-two (72) hours, any obligation to pay for services performed in addition to this free or discounted service

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

When in doubt use ICE!

Most conditions respond better to ice than they do to heat, especially if there is an injured joint involved. Ice does a couple of things for an injured area. First it cools the area which helps to reduce swelling and pain. Second, by cooling the area and decreasing blood flow to the injury, once the ice is removed your body innately works to warm that area back up by sending in  fresh blood. With that fresh blood comes fresh nutrients to help the injured area heal faster. 
If your doctor has instructed you to ice the injured area, you should do so for up to fifteen minutes and then stop doing so for at least an hour before you apply ice again.  NEVER APPLY ICE FOR MORE THAN 20 MINUTES IN AN HOUR.  Always wrap a towel around the ice pack or use it over clothing because you should never put an ice pack directly on your skin.
How to purchase or make an ice pack:
· For your convenience, we sell the large, high-quality ice packs like the ones that we use at Christopher Chiropractic for $10.00.
· You can buy ice packs similar to the ones we use here at most drug stores or Wal-Mart.
· You can make your own ice pack by filling a freezer bag with a heavy-duty zip seal or a hot water bottle with 1/2 ice and 1/2 cold water.  Check periodically to make sure that the ice pack is not leaking so that you don’t make a mess.
· You can also make your own ice pack by mixing one part rubbing alcohol with three parts water in a freezer bag with a heavy-duty zip seal or a hot water bottle.  Since alcohol will not freeze this will make a slushy, but not solid, ice pack similar to the gel packs you can purchase here or at most drug stores.  Monitor periodically to ensure that the ice pack is not leaking to avoid making a mess.
· For those who really want to save money, you can use and reuse a bag of frozen peas as an ice pack.

If you have been injured from a fall, sprain/strain, auto accident or work-related injury and are in doubt about what to do next, maybe we can help. Call our office today (606)549-4811 and we will try to answer any questions that you may have. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Chiropractic Adjustment

You may have heard some chiropractic patients describe their chiropractic adjustment as a "pop" or a "crack." Often when a joint is adjusted to it's normal position by a chiropractor, there will be a cavitation of the joint space. This is heard and/or felt as a "pop." Very simply it's a gas release within this joint space that makes the noise.

Doctor's of Chiropractic are trained to deliver adjustments to the spinal joints or to the extraspinal joints in order to improve range of motion, relieve nerve irritation, and improve well-being. By doing this we are able to possibly help with back pain, neck pain, muscle aches, etc. Within the realm of the medical field and insurance the chiropractic adjustment is referred to as "chiropractic manipulative therapy (CMT)."

Almost anyone can "pop" a joint (we don't advise that of course). However, many other health care professionals and service oriented professions utilize "manipulative" therapy in order to help with pain, improve blood flow, or increase range of motion. So, whether it is your next door neighbor, your physiotherapists, physical therapists, osteopath, barber or even your massage therapist...you can get your "back popped." What's the big difference in CMT or a chiropractic adjustment as opposed to all the rest?

Depending on how the doctor of chiropractic practices, sometimes nothing is different.

Often times though, the chiropractic adjustment is very different. Chiropractors are uniquely trained to apply a corrective force to the spinal joints. The most unique aspects of the adjustment is the specificity and intent.
The doctor of chiropractic spends at least four years learning how to correctly analyze each joint in the spine. Along with that analysis comes the determination of what is effected within the body by that misalignment or spinal joint fixation including: muscle issues, decrease in range of motion, and interference within the nervous system. From there the chiropractor knows specifically how the correct that joint in the most gentle and specific manner possible to restore proper function. Within a matter of seconds, the doctor can determine the proper vector, angle and force needed to correctly adjust the problem spinal joint for that specific patient and their spine. Chiropractic adjustments are tailored and specific not only to each joint, but also to each spine. From infants to elderly, the doctor of chiropractic performing specific adjustments can deliver the proper adjustment for each patient. 

At Christopher Chiropractic it's not uncommon to see one of our chiropractors and only get one joint fixed. We are not the docs that move every joint or bone in the back. For a simple description "one pop may be enough." We only fix the joints that are "stuck, not moving" and inhibiting you from functioning at 100% capacity. Those that are "stuck not moving" are corrected in the most specific way possible so that NO other segments or joints around are moved out of position. We find that with this level of specificity patients get better faster. That's why on average we may only see a patient three to five visits before kicking them out.

Our goal a Christopher Chiropractic is to get you feeling better in the most time and cost efficient manner possible so that you can better enjoy life.

If you would like to try chiropractic to see if we can help you call us at (606) 549-4811 to schedule your appointment.

Christopher Chiropractic. Feel better. Enjoy life.   

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Is There A Secret to Health?

We all wish there was that "silver bullet" for perfect health. Unfortunately, there isn't a magic pill that you can take to stay perfectly healthy. Would you be surprised if I told you that the "magic" force to staying perfectly healthy was within you?  It's true! Our bodies are amazing self-healing units! Consider this...if you paper cut your finger, or scrap your knee on the side walk, you do not have to consciously think/tell your body to heal the cut or scrap? We come with a system that takes care of healing for us.

Our mighty force of health lies mostly within our nervous system. This system controls the function of every cell, tissue and organ in your body. The nervous system can perceive a "threat" (i.e danger or in the above example an injury like a cut). When that threat is perceived the nervous system initiates an action. That action could be a reflex to quickly move your hand away from a hot pan. The action could also be initiation of the immune system to fight off germs or the initiation of new cells to form and repair our wound.

So, what happens if the nervous system doesn't function properly? You probably guessed it already...your whole body will suffer and not function properly.

Maintaining optimum function of your nervous system can be accomplished in a few easy steps:
  • Your spine houses and protects the bulk of the nervous system (spinal cord and spinal nerves). However, occasionally the vertebra (bones) that make up your spine will become restricted or misaligned from their proper position. When these little guys misalign, their normal range of motion becomes limited. We may notice this when we have tight muscles, back pain, headaches, neck pain, or even numbness and tingling. However, a subtle misalign can affect the function of the nervous system and we be unaware. So how do you keep you spine moving well?
Chiropractic is a great resource to utilize in the correction of the subtle misalignment of the spine. As chiropractors we are trained to find misalignments and correct them in the most gentle, specific manner possible. Once the joints are moving properly, then it's important to keep them moving. Keeping them moving can be easily accomplished with: stretching, walking, yoga, massage, strength training, etc.
  • Nutrition is important in providing your nervous system with the proper nutrients to function. A well balanced diet with proper intake of water can help your nervous system have everything that it needs to function at 100%. Some of the most important things to consider include: Vitamin B, water, fatty acids, electrolytes, and vitamin C.
Here is an important note: One of the principles of chiropractic states that "there is a limitation to matter." That being said it's important to remember that sometimes we all have limitations to how close to 100% function that we can have in our nervous system and our bodies. There are some diseases and illness that occur that will alter our body's chemistry and our nervous system's function. Because of that, we may never have 100% health. However, we can all support our nervous system to the best of our ability and give our body every opportunity possible to be healthy.

If you would like more information on chiropractic and how we may be able to help you feel better and enjoy life more call us at (606) 549-4811. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Have You Stretched Today?

Stretching is vitally important to keeping joints moving and to keeping you "feeling better." Our general rule with stretching is that if you have been sitting in one spot for more than an hour, then you probably need to get up and move and stretch for ten to fifteen minutes.

Daily stretching can increase blood flow to the muscles, improve posture, decrease muscle tension and improve joint range of motion. Here are some important considerations and tips to help you incorporate daily stretching into your life:
  1. Always consult a health professional before beginning any exercise program. However, it is safe to assume that most people in generally good health can participate in basic daily stretches with no problems. Basic stretches can include basic ranges of motion or just a change in position. For example: moving after sitting for long periods of time; sitting after standing all day, bending and squatting at the knees after standing, swinging your arms back and forth after sitting at a desk all day. 
  2. Never participate in a stretch that causes you pain. If you extend your arm back and you feel pain in your shoulder that may be a good sign of an underlying issue to consult your health professional about. 
  3. Focus on key muscle groups every day. Key muscle groups include those that are mostly overused and those that will normally feel tight. We recommend focusing on your chest (pectoralis),
    your buttocks (gluts), your hip flexors (psoas),
    and the back of your legs (calves and hamstrings). 
  4. Look into local yoga or Pilates classes for added support and ideas to help you better improve your stretches.You may be surprised how much better you begin to feel by attending just one class a week.
For more information on chiropractic or stretches that can be tailored to your specific spinal problems call us at (606) 549-4811 to schedule an appointment with one of our chiropractors.

Christopher Chiropractic. Feel better. Enjoy life. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

How Often Should You See A Chiropractor?

If you've never seen a chiropractor before you may be hesitant to visit one because you don't know how many times you will have to go once you begin care. Maybe you've heard your friends say, "Once you start going you will have to keep going." Or maybe you've heard, "they will want to see you 25 times over the next three weeks and then once a month for the rest of your life."

Every chiropractor is different in how they choose to manage patients. The doctors at Christopher Chiropractic see patients, on average, three to five visits. At Christopher Chiropractic, we strive to get patients well and feeling better as quickly as possible. We aren't going to keep you longer than you need and we promise not to "kick you out" until you are ready to enjoy life at 100%.

When first entering chiropractic care, the amount of times you have to see your doctor will ultimately depend upon your complaints and symptoms. Everyone responds differently to care depending on daily activities, trauma, lifestyle, diet, stress levels, how long an issue has been present, any underlying health condition related or not, etc. So, we say on average three to five visits, some patients go more and some go less depending on the patient, the condition and their current health status.

Upon completion of care we always recommend "maintenance" or wellness care. We make this pressure free recommend this because we know that if your keep your joints moving and in the proper position they are less likely to cause you pain and inhibit function.

Dr. Elizabeth often tells patients to "treat your body like a car." Put good fuel in it and every 3,000 miles get the oil changed. It's not a bad idea to change your oil aka get a spinal check every 3,000 miles to keep your back moving well and to keep issues at bay.

An important concept to keep in mind..."3,000 miles" is different for every patient. An athlete or a construction worker will hit "3000 miles" a lot sooner than a stay at home mom or a secretary. It's not to say that one job can or can't be more strenuous than others. It's just that in all likely hood the more you "drive" your body the more likely you are to need an alignment.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our chiropractors to "get your oil changed" or to see if we can fix a problem, call us at (606) 549-4811.

Christopher Chiropractic. Feel better. Enjoy life.