Archive for August, 2012

How Much Is Your Back Worth?

Monday, August 20th, 2012

Time IS money… if you spend your time wisely.

Sadly, the vast majority of people are really good at wasting their time when it comes to treating their back pain.

That’s the main reason why they are struggling.

There are 2 types of non-invasive treatment for back pain and disc injuries

1) Spinal decompression therapy and 2) chiropractic care

Anything else that you may consider as treatment such as…


Muscle creams

Electronic back devices

Pills and lotions

And more…


Are NOT treatment. While they may help you control your pain…will NOT correct your problem.


For those of you that have chosen to fix your back condition than you have chosen to spend your time wisely. Here are some additional tips for you to make the most from your treatment and keep your spine strong and healthy:


Sleeping on a soft bed or couch can strain neck and back muscles since the three curves of the spine are not adequately supported. Sleeping on your stomach is not recommended since it can cause additional strain on the neck and back. Make sure you have a firm mattress that keeps the spine aligned and supports the spinal curvatures. The best sleeping positions are on your back or side. A pillow can be placed under the knees when lying on your back to take pressure off of the lower back.


Standing and Walking
Standing or bending forward for long periods can cause increased spinal pressure— especially if you slouch. Bending over with straight legs increases the pressure in the lower back. High-heeled shoes may result in a “swayback,” which throws the natural curves out of alignment when standing or walking. When standing for extended periods, rest one foot on a small stool to maintain spinal curvature and relieve pressure. The knees should be bent when bending forward. Low-heeled shoes may help by maintaining spinal curvatures and cushioning your weight.


Sitting in chairs that do not support your back may throw the natural spinal curvatures out of alignment and add extra stress to the neck and back. Slouching while sitting increases the strain even more. Sitting too far away from the steering wheel while driving also may increase stress to the neck and back. Use chairs that promote good posture and support your back. Rolling up a towel or placing a lumbar or low back support cushion in the lower portion of your back may help to support your lumbar curve. Reposition the seat of your car so that your knees are level with your hips.

Bending and Lifting
Bending forward with the legs straight causes a loss of the three natural spinal curves and puts undue stress on the lower portion of your back. Lifting and bending forward at the same time puts great strain on the muscles and increases the pressure inside the discs (the spongy materials between the bones of your spine) even more. When bending forward, keep your back straight while bending at the knees and hips. This will help to keep the three spinal curvatures in proper alignment. When lifting, keep your spine straight while using your legs to do the brunt of the work. Hold the objects being lifted close to your body to keep the weight on your spine to a minimum.

Keeping the feet, knees and hips stationary while turning the lower back increases the chances of a twisting injury to the spine or an injury to the discs. The shape of the vertebrae do not allow the joints of the spine to twist easily. Imagine your body as being one continuous unit from your shoulders to your hips. When turning, use your feet to make the turns, not your back. Concentrate on moving your feet first in the direction you wish to turn, while maintaining the natural curves in your spine.


Do not stretch your arms or back for something beyond your normal reach. This type of movement decreases the natural curves of the spine, resulting in additional stress or strain. Move your body close to the item you are reaching for. A ladder or stool may be used to reach items above your head. A tool called a “reacher” can be used to grab hard-to-reach items. Always ask someone for help if the item is heavy or you don’t feel you can reach it yourself.

Thanks For Being My Starfish

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

I know I you get a lot of stuff in the email. Most emails are probably an offer to buy something or similar. This email does neither. It sells nothing. I just had something important I needed to tell you. So, as a favor to me, (and yourself) please read it now.

I’d like to share with you a brief story. It’s called:

The Star Fish Story

Once upon a time there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work. One day he was walking along the shore. As he looked down the beach, he saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself to think of someone who would dance to the day.

So he began to walk faster to catch up. As he got closer, he saw that it was a young man and the young man wasn’t dancing, but instead he was reaching down to the shore, picking up something and very gently throwing it into the ocean.

As he got closer he called out, “Good morning! What are you doing?” The young man paused, looked up and replied, “Throwing starfish in the ocean.” “I guess I should have asked, why are you throwing starfish in the ocean?”

“The sun is up and the tide is going out. And if I don’t throw them in they’ll die.”

“But, young man, don’t you realize that there are miles and miles of beach and starfish all along it. You can’t possibly make a difference!”

The young man listened politely. Then bent down, picked up another starfish and threw it into the sea, past the breaking waves and said-

“For This One, It Made All The Difference In The World!”

I remember reading that story, for the first time, many, many moons ago… just before entering Chiropractic school. I thought about that story many times as I was going through school. Every time I had to stay up all night (two or three nights in a row) I would think of that story… and… why I was there. It made the sacrifice and lack of sleep clearly worth it.

The morning of my state board exam, I vividly remember waiting in the holding room to be tested, with bags under my eyes so big my new nickname was “Sampsonite,” thinking about that story. It was still worth it.

After I passed that exam with flying colors, I started throwing starfish back into the ocean – - one by one. Not literally starfish of course… but… getting suffering people out of pain. It was exciting helping so many people. More exciting then I ever thought it could possibly be.

As the days turn into months and the months into years, most people grow tired of their job or “career.” Most can’t wait to go home every day and eventually retire. Well, that never happened to me. I’m as excited today as the day I entered Chiropractic school.

Helping People Like You Is The Reason, After All These Years, I Still Can’t Wait To Jump Out Of Bed And Go To Work!

I honestly feel blessed to have such a group of patients that make intelligent decisions about their health. Most people just sit on the couch and get their education from the boob tube. Not you. You’ve taken the time and effort to educate and help yourself. The world would be a much healthier and happier place if everyone followed your lead.

You also understand healing and fixing the real cause of your problem can take time. If you’ve stuck with the program then you’re probably reaping the benefits… now and later in life. You finish what you start and your spine, muscles and nervous system will be healthier and younger because of it. Because of it, you will live a MUCH better life.

Yep, you’ve made my practice a wonderful place to be and I want you to always feel I am YOUR Chiropractor. Even if we don’t see each other for a while, I want you to always know your welcome and I’ll be happy to see you. I’ll ALWAYS be here to help you.

I’m glad you’re one of MY starfish!


Dr. Michael Pritsker

P.S. Can you imagine how wonderful the world would be if EVERYONE looked for starfish to throw back in the ocean? We’d clearly wipe out terrorism, hunger, poverty and most unhappiness. Make this year the year YOU look for starfish and – one-by-one — throw them back in. It will make a difference.