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Archive | Neck pain

Reasons to see a Chiropractor

DSC025251.Back Pain- relief and prevention-

Chiropractors are notorious for our results when it comes to resolving back pain. Even Consumer Reports rated Chiropractic the #1 solution to lower back pain over medical care, pharmaceuticals, acupuncture and physical therapy. Numerous studies show how patients seeking chiropractic care for low back pain get relief faster and the results last longer over time.

2Neck Pain- relief and prevention-
Chiropractic’s history with neck pain is just as impressive as our results with lower back pain. Recently, ABC news conducted a study which revealed that Chiropractic adjustments are superior to pharmaceuticals and physical therapy when it comes to neck pain. Similar to the back pain studies, they found chiropractic patients recovered twice as fast as those receiving traditional medical care.

3. Pain,Tingling and/or Numbness in an Extremity-
These patients who are suffering with Sciatica(in legs or feet), or a Cervical Radiculopathy(in arm or hand) usually seek medical intervention first due to the pain and discomfort. They eventually find their way to the chiropractor after these methods fail and the only other alternative is surgery. Chiropractic aims to remove the pressure on the nerves affected, thereby addressing the cause instead of covering up the symptoms. In most cases, Chiropractic can delay or even eliminate the need for drugs or surgery.

4. Headaches/ Migraines- relief and prevention-
Headaches are a very common condition, but they are never “normal”. They are a sign that you have excessive stress on your central nervous system. Chiropractic has been shown to help with all sorts of headaches. From the classic Migrains to Trigeminal Neuralgia, or Tic Deloroux. Chiropractic does not treat headaches. The Adjustments remove pressure off of nerves and allow the entire body to function better. As a result, many headaches tend to dissipate or even disappear. There is also published research on it’s effectiveness. If headaches are plaguing you, Chiropractic is a logical place to start.

5. Easier Pregnancy and Labor- 
Moms-to-be have been finding relief at the chiropractor for all sorts of common issues during pregnancy. Conditions such as back pain, heartburn & circulation problems all been shown to improve under chiropractic care. Patients who see chiropractors have also been shown to have shorter and less painful deliveries! This makes for happy moms, especially those choosing natural child births.

6. Improved Range of Motion and Peak Performance-
Many athletes see chiropractors on a regular basis. Professional athletes in every sport have endorsed chiropractic and given it credit, in part, to their level of success. Chiropractic helps the musculoskeletal system to perform more balanced. This tends to reduce injury and recover from it faster. People such as Tiger Woods, Jerry Rice, Evander Holyfield, Lance Armstrong and many others include Chiropractic as part of their lifestyle.

7. Healthier Children-
Mom and Dads have found relief in other ways through Chiropractic. More and more parents have been bringing their children to see the chiropractor for multiple reasons. Chiropractic care has helped many children recover from conditions such as acid reflux, ear infections, colic, asthma, ADD, ADHD and even Autism. It has an impeccable record when it comes to safety as well. Again, Chiropractic does NOT offer to diagnose or treat these conditions or any others. The chiropractic adjustment removes interferences in the central nervous system, allowing the entire body to express itself at a higher level. EVEN IN CHILDREN!

8. Relief from Menstrual Problems-
Due to the nervous system’s control over the menstrual cycle, chiropractic has helped women with not only the level of pain, but also abnormal cycles and even infertility. More mature women have also found relief in their menopausal symptoms. Are you starting to see why 80% of chiropractic patients are women?

9. Relief from Allergies-
Another issue people see chiropractors for, is Allergies and other sinus and respiratory issues. The efficiency of your Immune System to fight off allergens and infection is largely dependent on the integrity of your Central Nervous System. Chiropractic patients perceive less overall symptoms due to seasonal allergies without the need for over the counter medication.

10. Improved Overall Function-
As you can probably gather from the previous 9 reasons, the theme is pretty similar. The Power that Made the Body, Heals the Body. Chiropractic focuses on removing nerve interference called Subluxation, thereby improving the function and integrity of the entire body and mind. Since your Nervous System controls and coordinates all function, stresses in that system can create a state of dis-ease, which leads to dysfunction and eventually a symptom. Chiropractors do not treat symptoms. We focus on the cause and on removing the interferences in the normal transmission of mental impulses from brain to body, and body to brain. Then your body can get all the information it needs in order to function the best that it can. That is why 80% of the patients I see on a daily basis are feeling great! They come in for regular monthly visits in order to maintain that level of health and expression.

So, you see. There is much more to chiropractic than just a “crick” in the neck. Unfortunately that’s what most people think. Trends these days are changing though. More people are seeing the problem with over medicating and covering up symptoms. People are turning to more natural forms of healthcare and focusing on prevention through diet and exercise. Chiropractic is the leading alternative to the Allopathic, or Medical paradigm, and they’ve been teaching this lifestyle for over a century. So, don’t wait until you’re in pain to see a chiropractor. That’s like waiting until you have a cavity to see your dentist!

Virginia Hill Chiropractic, K. Peterson,October 3, 2012

Whiplash, Neck Injuries & Chiropractic Pt1


Whiplash, Neck Injuries & Chiropractic

Of the millions of people who visit doctors of chiropractic each year, a large number have had whiplash injuries. Whiplash injuries occur when a person’s spine, usually their neck, was hurt by being unexpectedly or suddenly thrown very quickly in one direction and then in the opposite direction. Your might say the head is “whipped around” on the neck.
Whiplash is one of the most common consequences of auto accidents; it is estimated that 15% -30% of car occupants will suffer neck pain.
In almost all whiplash-type injuries, the spine is thrown first in one direction and then is pulled in the opposite direction because the muscles react to the initial injury by pulling or rebounding in the opposite direction. They rebound can and often does cause injury to your soft tissues-muscles, ligaments, tendons and other tissues. Occasionally a whiplash injury can rest from side to side motion of the neck, also called left and right lateral hyperflexion.
There is more to whiplash than being thrown forward and backward. Usually the head is turned to the right or left a little when an accident occurs and this can complicate the effects for he injury.
Whiplash Damage
Whiplash can be mild to severe and can range from rapid healing to slow healing to long-term chronic pain and impairment. it can cause serious problems because it can cause long-term damage. Studies show that a large percentage of whiplash suffers, from 50% to as much as 88% may continue to supper pain and some amount of disability for years after the accident.
Spinal Cord Damage
Depending on the severity of the accident, whiplash damage can range from barely noticeable stiffness to death. A worst case scenario occurs in a small minority of cases where there is actual bone fracture and spinal cord damage causing paralysis and death.
Whiplash Symptoms
Whiplash symptoms may start as neck soreness or stiffness, perhaps accompanied by a headache immediately or wishing a few hours of the accident. Along with these symptoms there may be pain and/or numbness, tingling, or a pins-and-needles feeling between the shoulder blade, arm and hand.
Some people may experience ear ringing, dizziness or even hearing loss. Sometimes the eyes can be affected and there may be pain behind the eyeballs, blurred vision, sensitivity to light or other visual symptoms. Occasionally, there may be tearing or running of the nose.

Post Concussion Syndrome
A concussion may accompany a whiplash. It occurs from a violent shaking of the head where the brain is thrown around against the skull– similar to scrambling an egg without damage the shell. Concussion symptoms may include headache, restlessness, irritability, insomnia, moodiness, depression and emotional “jitters” that may last for hours or days after the accident. This grouping of symptoms is now being called Post Concussion Syndrome(PCS).

Next- Medical Care and Chiropractic Care

Neck Problems Pt2


Neck Problems-Disc Degeneration & Herniation

Disc herniation (or rupture) is relatively rare but can be the source of intense pain. Sometimes surgery is needed in this instance, especially when it’s due to trauma. However, in many cases, chiropractic techniques can re-establish the integrity of the disc and prevent the need for neck surgery. These should be explored if possible.
Disc degeneration is a more common cause of pain, nerve root and spinal cord irritation. Although many doctors tell their patients that the cause of disc degeneration is age, age alone cannot be blamed for the condition because it can be found even in young children. The most common cause of disc degeneration are years of spinal imbalance, spinal subluxations, physical trauma or emotional stress.

Spinal Imbalance-Cause of Neck Stress

Let us suppose that one day you carried a bowling ball around for the entire day, but instead of carrying it closely at your side, you held it a little distance from your body. You’d get tired very fast! It’s the same with your head. If it’s properly balanced that’s fine, but if it’s held even a little off center you will start to suffer from fatigue, as well as stress on your neck.


If unhealthy, your neck’s normal forward curve may reduce, become straight or “military” or even reverse its curve. Over time arthritic changes in the vertebrae such as lipping or spurring (bony growths); disc thinning or degeneration; or deterioration of muscles, ligaments and other structures may occur. In spite of all these changes, however, there may or may not be pain. In fact, studies show little or no correlation between the degree of pain felt in the neck and arthritic changes found on X-rays and MRI.
Lipping, spurring and other irregularities (osteoarthritis) do not in themselves constitute a disease but are rather defense mechanisms that arise to stabilize an off-balance spine.
Recent research has shown that chiropractic care can reverse some of the effects of osteoarthritis-something that had previously been considered impossible.


Neck Problems Pt 1


Your Amazing Incredible Neck

Inside your neck are your neck bones (cervical vertebrae), spinal and cranial nerves, spinal cord, blood vessels, glands(including the thyroid and parathyroids), voice box (larynx), esophagus, trachea, brain stem, and many muscles ligaments and other structures. With all that, it’s still able to gracefully balance your head and turn, tilt and bend without damaging its vital “occupants.”
That’s amazing because if your neck’s functions are interrupted for even a few seconds you’d lose consciousness and begin to die.
neck_pain_2The Cervical Spine
Cervix is the Latin word for neck, meaning a constricted area (the uterus and urinary bladders have a neck or cervix too). Your seven small neck bones are called cervical vertebrae, numbered C-1 to C-7.
Inside your cervical vertebrae lies your spinal cord, a continuation of the brain down your neck and back. Protection of the spinal cord is extremely important because an injury to it can result in instant paralysis or death.
Your vertebrae are connected to each other by discs, ligaments and tendons that help give the neck its shape (the cervical curve). Between the vertebrae are opening where nerves, blood vessels, lymphatic vessels, fat and connective tissues are found.


Neck Problems
With all the neck’s complexity, it should come as no surprise that neck problems are common. They may develop suddenly from a trauma such as a whiplash or fall, or slowly as a result of spinal imbalance, vertebral subluxations, emotional stress or bad posture.
Damaged or irritated neck nerves can cause more than neck pain. Pain in the face, shoulder, arm, wrist, hand and fingers, as well as reduced neck motion may also occur. Other neck problems include headaches, vision difficulties, dizziness, ringing in the ears, decreased attention span, learning and memory impairments, nasal problems tongue and throat problems.
The more serious neck problems such as fracture, dislocation or severe tissue damage can be fatal if not given emergency medical care. Most other neck problems, however, although not life-threatening, can impair your health if not corrected.

Neck Pain
Pain in the neck can be caused by irritation, inflammation,injury or infection. Pain in the neck, shoulder, arm, hand or head “most frequently results from irritation of cervical nerve roots in the region of the intervertebral foramen, encroachment of the vascular supply as it courses through the vertebral canal, or invasion of the cord in the spinal canal.


“Pinched” Nerves Pt2 – Nerves: Where Do They Go?

“Pinched” Nerves Pt2 – Nerves: Where Do They Go?

There are billions of nerve fibers in your body often in bundles called nerves. Many billions of them travel inside the spinal column as part of the spinal cord and exit through opening between the vertebrae. After leaving the spinal column the nerves separate into smaller and smaller bundles and travel to every nook and cranny in your body.

Life Without Nerves
Without nerves you couldn’t see, hear, touch, taste, smell or feel hot, cold, pain and pleasure. Your body would be the ultimate sensory deprivation tank; you’d be completely cut off from existence. Without nerves you would be completely paralyzed, no muscles could move; your body couldn’t respond to any of your commands- you’d be a prisoner within yourself.

Nerve Regulation
Nerves regulate your breathing, sweating, shivering, internal organ function, heartbeat, digestion, excretion, regulation of blood supply to different organs and control of blood pressure. Without nerves your body would be quite useless.

We Need Healthy Nerves

Without healthy nerves the body is weakened, not able to adapt to environmental stresses and becomes a candidate for physical and mental diseases. The most common form of nerve damage is the so-called “pinched” nerve. It can affect the health of the nerves and the entire body.

How Do Nerves Get Impinged or “Pinched”?

When the nerves come down from the brain they travel through a bony canal formed by vertebrae. If the vertebrae misalign slightly they may cause the nerves to be irritated, compressed or stretched along with blood vessels, discs, ligaments, joints, muscles, fascia, tendons, meninges, lymphatics and fat tissue. Nerves also send more than “electrical” impulses; it is now known that chemical nutrients, necessary for muscle health, travel over the nerves.
What can cause nerve “pinching” or impingement? A fall or an accident, even a very mild one that happened years ago, may be enough to misalign your spine. Some common causes are unnatural sleeping positions, bad posture, fatigue, dental work, a difficult birth, emotional stress, poor nutrition or a combination of stresses (falling or tripping when fatigued, etc).


Are You Popping Pills? Pt2

Are You Popping Pills? Pt2

Are You Popping Pills ?

Are You Popping Pills ?

Does This Spell Health To You?
Do drugs correct the cause of your problems or do they just temporarily relieve your symptoms? The fact is if drugs truly corrected your health problems then you’d only have to take them once. But as soon as their effects wear off, the symptoms return and isn’t it back to the pill bottles? Is that any way to go through life?

Do Drugs Make You Healthy?
If drugs make you healthy then those taking the most of them should be the healthiest of us all, but isn’t it true that such people are often the sickest?
And what about the side effects? Sometimes side effects cause more problems than the original condition for which they were taken. Sometimes the drugs cause physical or psychological dependence on them. Sometimes they cause disease and sickness. Sometimes they even cause death. And all the time they take us away from depending on our natural healing ability and make us dependent on artificial supports.

Drugs Lie
The symptoms the drugs are covering up are often warning signals telling your that something is wrong with your body. By constantly covering up the symptoms with medicines you may be ignoring what your body is telling you. While you take medicines to feel better your healthy may continue to deteriorate, and if it does you may start to take more powerful medicines to continue to hide the warning symptoms your body is giving you.
Drugs lie to you. They take attention away from correcting the real problem: the cause of the illness.

Alternatives To Drugs?
Is there an alternative to drug use? Chiropractic teaches us that true health does not come from a pill, a lotions, a potion or some other chemical concoction. True health comes from within. Health is the expression of the body functioning properly.
Chiropractors correct a very common condition that interferes with your body function causing it to weaken and become susceptible to disease and malfunction. That condition is called a vertebral subluxation.


Are You Popping Pills? Pt 1


Are You Popping Pills? Pt.1

How Do You Spell Relief?
Do you spell relief A-S-P-I-R-I-N? V-A-L-I-U-M? T-Y-L-E-N-0-L? There are thousands of ways to spell relief and most are spelled the same: D-R–U-G-S.
We swallow a lot of pills in this society. Why shouldn’t we? We and our children are exposed to thousands of drug commercials, newspaper and magazine advertisement, all saying the same thing: “Drugs and medicines are good for you.”
Every twenty-four to thirty-six hours, from fifty to eighty percent of adults in the United States and the United Kindgdom swallow a medically-prescribed drug.
Is relief important? Of course it is! If you’re in pain that’s all you can think of: “Let me get rid of this headache,” “If only the pain would go away,” “I wish I could find a position that’s comfortable,” “If only the fever would break,” “If only I could breathe freely”…Medicines are sometimes seen as little gems to those who know only agony and distress without them.
No one can question that there are times when medication is necessary and desirable. The accident victim, the burn victim, the terminally ill, the acute patient and others should receive the medication they need.

But What of Chronic Use?
But what of the housewife who swallows painkillers for the headaches she’s always getting? What of grandma who gulps down a dozen aspirin tablets a day for arthritis?
What about blood pressure medicines? Menstrual pains? Backache? What about your classmate who cannot stand daily stress without something: Valium or alcohol, cigarettes, coffee?

Does This Spell Health To You?
Do drugs correct the cause of your problems or do they just temporarily relieve your symptoms? The fact is if deus truly corrected your health problems then you’d only have to take them once. But as soon as their effect wear off, the symptoms return and isn’t it back to the pill bottles? Is that any way to go through life?


10 Tips for Improved Ergonomic Fitness

computeruse10 Tips for Improved Ergonomic Fitness

  1. When sitting, vary your body position as much as possible to relieve tension on your back, neck and shoulders.
  2. Give you eyes a break by frequently looking up from your computer and focusing on a distant object.
  3. Keep you wrists in a straight position, rather than flexed or bend, while typing. Position your keyboard so your wrists and forearms are parallel to the floor.
  4. Take short breaks every 30 to 60 minutes. Stand up, stretch or walk for a few minutes.
  5. Reposition your monitor to avoid glare. Position the top of your monitor slightly below eye level.
  6. Help reduce exposure to electromagnetic emissions from your computer by sitting 20 to 28 inches away from the front of the monitor.
  7. Sit well back in your chair and place your feet on the floor to prevent posture-related problems. Us a footrest if your feet are not flat on the floor.
  8. Avoid neck strain by location your monitor directly in front of you. Place documents in the same vicinity so you do not have to turn your head to read.
  9. Keep clutter away from your computer to avoid eye fatigue caused by what you see using your peripheral vision.
  10. Schedule regular chiropractic adjustments to correct any problems that computer use may have irritated.

Neck Pain: referred pain – associated symptoms

Neck Pain – Associated Symptoms

Neck pain may also be perceived in other parts of the body. This “referred pain” may include:

  • Arm, hand and finger pain, stiffness, heaviness, weakness, locking of the joints, swelling, tingling and numbness.
  • Poor arm and hand coordination.
  • Front and back chest pain, breathing difficulty, asthma-like breathing problems.
  • Poor or nonrestorative sleep, insomnia, and fatigue.
  • Gastrointestinal problems such as loss of appetite, indigestion, gas, bloating, intestinal motility problems, constipation, diarrhea.
  • Bladder problems, such as urinary retention.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, see your chiropractor right away!

4 Steps to Reduce Neck Pain Now

4 Steps to Reduce Neck Pain Now

Sleep on a firm surface, with a pillow thin or thick enough so that your neck does not bend forward or backward when lying on your back, or to the right or left, when lying on your side.

There are two types of exercise that can help relieve neck pain. they are based on stretching and muscle-toning. In both cases, you bend your head on your neck through all six of the normal directions – forward, backward, right and left turns, and right and left bends.
Do this 20 to 30 times in each direction and finish with the same number of neck rolls. To tone the muscles, go through the same movements against the resistance of your hand and arm. Instead of pain medication, try both exercises four times a day. Continue these exercises daily to help prevent recurrences.

“Telephonitis” is a form of repetitive strain injury. A new study has found that 50% of office workers who use the telephone for at least two hours a day suffer from neck pain and 31% suffer from lower back pain. The main cause is holding the phone between the head and the shoulders. The best treatment is simply to invest in a hands-free headset.

Office Ergonomics

  1. Get up and talk to colleagues instead of emailing them. Intersperse active and passive tasks throughout the day.
  2. Position the keyboard/ mouse so your elbows are at a 90-degree angle. Keep your feet flat on the floor. Keep the top of the screen at least 3-5 inches below your line of sight.
  3. Use chairs that have height, back and tile adjustments, and take advantage of variable height work surfaces.

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