Posts Tagged ‘alternative medicine’

How Does Chiropractic Help Headaches?

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Headaches are one of the most common reasons people seek chiropractic care. Many patients with headaches benefit significantly from adjustments made to the upper cervical region. So, the question is, how does adjusting the neck help headaches? To help answer this question, let’s look at a study that was recently published that examined this exact issue…

It’s been said that if one understands anatomy, determining WHERE the problem is located becomes easy. So, let’s take a look at the anatomy in the upper most part of the neck. In the study previously mentioned (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21278628), the authors found an intimate relationship between the muscles that connect the upper 2 cervical vertebra (C1 and 2) together and their anatomical connection to the dura mater (the covering of the spinal cord). They identified this anatomical connection between the muscles that span between the back aspect of C1/2 and the dural connection as having a significant role in the development of headaches usually referred to as cervicogenic headaches.

There are several reasons why chiropractors adjust or manipulate the upper cervical vertebrae in patients with headaches. The obvious reason is simply because it helps to reduce the intensity, frequency and duration of headaches. The reason it works is this: If one or both of the upper 2 vertebrae (C1 and C2, also referred to as the atlas and axis, respectively) are either blocked or fixed and cannot properly move independently, then there is an abnormal change in the biomechanics in that region. Similarly, if one of the two vertebrae is rotated or shifted in reference to the other, a similar biomechanical “lesion” or problem occurs (often referred to as a “subluxation”). You can take all the ibuprofen, Aleve, Tylenol or other perhaps stronger, prescription medication for the headache, but it is not logical that the biomechanical problem at C1 and/or C2 is going to change by inducing a chemical change (i.e., taking a pill). All you’re doing is masking the symptoms for a while, at best.

Many people find that after a several chiropractic adjustments, their headaches are significantly improved. This is because restoring proper biomechanics to the C1/2 region reduces the abnormal forces on the vertebrae as well as any abnormal pull or traction of the posterior cervical muscles on the dural attachment. It has been reported that the function of this muscle/dura connection is to resist excessive movement of the dura towards the spinal cord when we look upwards and forwards. During neurosurgery, observation of mechanical stress on the dura was found to be associated in patients with headaches. In chronic headache sufferers, adjustments applied to this area results in significant improvement. There is no other treatment approach that matches the ability that adjustments or manipulation have in restoring the C1/2 biomechanical relationship thus, helping the headache sufferer. Another treatment option that has been shown to benefit the headache patient is injections to this same area. However, given the side effects of cortisone, botox, and other injectable chemicals, it’s clear that chiropractic should be utilized first. It’s the safest, most effective, and fastest way to restore function in the C1/2 area, thus relieving headaches.

We realize that you have a choice in where you choose your healthcare services.  If you, a friend or family member requires care for headaches, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services and look forward in serving you and your family presently and, in the future.

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!

Sincerely,

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.

“Why Happy People Have Less Pain”

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

I talk to A LOT of patients and do so daily and have been doing so for over 12 years.

What I’ve seen is that those who are happy do a lot better when it comes to getting rid of pain and recovering from injuries.
Now I know what you’re thinking, “that’s a load of baloney…I’m happy but I still have pain.” Well, that may be the case, but I’m just talking in general here. The mistake that many patients make is believing that others are happy BECAUSE they are free from pain.

But the truth is, they were probably already happy before they had pain and probably even during.
Happy people see the world differently.

Happy people think differently.

Happy people are more optimistic, confident and are in large, more likable.

…and that’s why they feel better also.

So, how do you become happier?

Do things that make you happy.

Be around people who make you feel good.

…and most importantly, choose to be happy.

It’s a choice.

Need help?

Try this…

If you were happy, what would you think about?

What would you do?

How would you carry yourself?

How would you see others and the world?

Good.

Do that!

It really is that simple. Let me take care of the getting rid of your back pain part, you attempt to do the being happy part.

Watching Your Back,

Dr. Michael Pritsker, DC

Was Chiropractic Care The Miracle That Saved This Little Girl??

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

The day Pam Flynn hurt her knee may have been the best day of Helen Bibb’s life, say the neighbors on Hortense Street in the area of North Hollywood. That mishap launched a journey for Bibb’s daughter Laura, a 10-year old developmentally delayed girl, who went from being the neighborhood pity to the neighborhood super Rocky. This happened all because Pam Flynn hurt her knee and went to see a local chiropractor in town. This started a chain of events.

It’s one of those quiet, tree-lined residential blocks where people move in and stay for en entire lifetime. It’s where neighbors know more about each other than their names and what kind of cars they drive. They know their personal lives, both the good and the bad. Pam Flynn and neighbor Tracy Johnson and Elaine Alexander have shared many cups of morning coffee with Helen Bibb. And over the years, they’ve heard how Helen’s daughter, Laura, was diagnosed as a baby as being mildly mentally retarded. And that when it came true for her to start school, her skills and test scores placed her at the severely retarded level in her class.

They’ve learned that Helen and her husband Ron, never stopped fighting for their daughter. They knew that Helen spent half her lifetime on the Internet and on media looking for the answer to why Laura’s body was also betraying her. She wanted to know why she kept falling down, or would start to binge-eat and refuse to talk to even her family for long stretches of time.

The Internet and the media didn’t give Helen the answers that she was looking for, and neither did her doctors, who vowed that everything medical science had to offer, inside the confines of an HMO plan was being done to help her daughter. “I was on the diagnosis merry-go-round, going nowhere,” Helen says. “There were plenty of explanations and excuses, but no answers.”

The latest setback came when Laura began to suffer from swollen knees that were diagnosed as severe growing pains. “She had foot orthotics put in her shoes, but her knees were still swollen and getting worse.” Helen said “Her right leg and foot were starting to turn in. The orthopedic doctors suggested knee braces and painkillers.” This was not the answer.

From behind their window on her street the neighbors watched the slow deterioration of this little girl they had known since birth. She was now barely able to walk down the street without falling down on the sidewalk.

“We had all watched her grow up, and to see her in pain, falling down like this, well, it was heartbreaking,” said the neighbor. There was nothing they could do but give the Bibb family moral support. They weren’t doctors and didn’t know what to do.

Then one day, Pam Flynn wrenched her knee and went to see a chiropractor. While she was being treated, she mentioned her 10-year-old neighbor who was falling down all the time, and would soon need braces and a steady diet of painkillers just to get around. “The idea of this wonderful girl who had already been through so much, now needing braces to walk really threw me,” Pam said.

When she got home later that day, Pam knocked on her next-door neighbor’s door and told Helen about her chiropractor, and that he also treated kids. “Go see him,” Pam said. “What could it hurt?”

“I was looking for anything that would interfere with Laura’s nervous system, and I found a vertebra at the base of her skull was way out of place and putting pressure on her nerves,” the chiropractor said. “So I adjusted it.” So simple, Helen said. An adjustment. Not braces and painkillers.

“The first thing Laura did was let out a big sigh of relief,” Helen said. “That night she came down the stairs by herself. We were stunned at what was happening. This used to take forever with Laura holding on to both rails, her dad in front so she wouldn’t fall, and me guiding from behind.”

“Laura now wants to move and run and be a real kid for the first time. All the doctors said that her foot would stay turned in and there was nothing they could do. Well, her foot has straightened out too.” And during the summer, her daughter did something Helen, in her most optimistic dreams, never would have thought possible. With her mom and dad, younger sister Julie, and older brother Edward cheering her on and bursting with pride, Laura swam with the dolphins at Sea World.

“She’s an entirely different little girl, mentally as well as physically,” says neighbor Elaine. “She used to be shy and hide behind her mother. Now, she’s in the open talking. When we’d walk the dogs, Laura couldn’t keep up. Now, she’s out front. It’s been a remarkable transformation.”

Miracle or simply an adjustment, Ron and Helen Bibb are feeling like the luckiest people in the world, seeing their daughter smiling and happier than ever. “Look at her – she’s so proud of herself,” Helen said recently, watching Laura help Pam and Harry Flynn walk their dogs down Hortense Street.

The little girl who used to be the neighborhood pity is now the neighborhood Rocky, leading the pack. Stories like this and more happen every day at the chiropractic office of New Century Spine Centers in San Diego.

Testosterone Reduction And Computer Laptop Use Showing Some Links

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Many patients in the city of San Diego come to New Century Spine Centers to see a chiropractor for their back pain from sitting at the computer for too long. But here’s another problem from sitting at the computer for too long that may not be related to your back. A November 8, 2010 article published by Reuter’s reports placing a laptop computer on your lap might be, “cooking your gonads.” According to the article, “It turns out, unsurprisingly, that sitting with a computer on your lap will crank up the temperature of your nether regions, which could affect sperm quality.”

Authors of a study in the journal of Fertility and Sterility, say the only way you can prevent this is by putting your laptop on a desk or somewhere besides your lap. Even using a lap pad, the temperature quickly rises above the acceptable range.

“Millions and millions of men are using laptops now, especially those in the reproductive age range,” said Dr. Yefim Sheynkin, a Urologist at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, who led the new study. “Within 10 or 15 minutes, their scrotal temperature is already above what we consider safe, but they don’t feel it,” he added.

On another interesting note, you won’t want to miss this one. There seems to be a television commercial about it every two minutes. It’s either Viagra or Cialis for “performance” issues, or the new buzz-word, “Low T” for low testosterone. Well, here’s something very important you should know about testosterone and sexual problems…

According to an October 29, 2010 Reuters Health article, authors of a new study say, “we need a lot less testosterone for sexual function than people think.” Dr. Frederick Wu, a hormone expert at the University of Manchester, is quoted as saying, “Most people with erectile problems do not have hormone problems, but often have blockage in their penis arteries.” They also state that very low levels of testosterone can cause a problem, but they are not sure what this level is.

Chiropractic For Getting Rid Of Back Pain

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Chiropractic is the practice whereby hands-on adjustments of bones within the body and the spinal column are used to drive away pains from within the bones. This is a common practice utilized to get relief from back aches and stiffness by Dr. Michael Pritsker at New Century Spine Centers in San Diego. This practice operates on the theory known as the “subluxation theory” that the improper alignment of the human vertebrae affects the body’s nervous system and that pains and other disease can originate when this happens. So, its aim is to properly align the vertebrae for better health and relief from these pains.

To receive chiropractic treatment, the patient has to visit a chiropractor who uses manual adjustments or re-alignments to keep the vertebrae back in shape and restore the health condition of the patient. Some studies have shown that this process has been very effective in bringing relief to patients with back pains and some general ailments. These include certain back problems such as sciatica, leg pain, and back pain. For this lack of scientific evidence, some experts in the medical field have completely rejected the notion of chiropractic, though some chiropractors currently work with renowned doctors on part time and full time basis these days in the treatment of back pains and associated ailments.

Generally, if you are constantly plagued by back pain, the chiropractic might be a good option to try out as it has proven reliable in the treatment of back pains, assisted with the restoration of mobility and corrected neuron-musculoskeletal disorders in some patients. Let us go through the process of getting back pain relief through this medium, especially the lower back pain which most office executives and labor workers seem to be affected by today.

Manual re-alignment or adjustments of the vertebrae by the chiropractor are achieved by using the hands to apply pressure enough to cause the vertebrae to get back to its normal space. High velocity thrusts and spinal traction are common methods used in this regard. Also, professional massages and the stretching of back muscles are effected to relax the muscles and make the adjustments easier. Generally, the process might also some therapeutic exercises on specific group of muscles aimed at properly aligning the spinal cord.

The principle of using massages to relax the nerves and muscles is also part of the process employed by chiropractors to provide cures for back pain. The massage therapists at Happy head foot reflexology and massage in San Diego do a great job at helping reduce pain from muscle spasms. Most often, you find professional massage teams working alongside the chiropractors, because it is believed that relaxed muscles can be easily put back in place than the tensed ones. Also, regular exercises and relaxed nerves are a means of keeping the adjustment by the chiropractor in place over time.

Got Lingering Holiday Stress? Learn simple ways to let it go, feel better, and maybe even look younger!

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

The holiday season is one of the most stressful times of the year. Traveling, family visits, shopping, money concerns, etc. can all cause anxiety that is extremely unhealthy. Increased anxiety and stress can weaken your immune system, allowing you to get sick with illnesses such as the common cold or flu. Who wants to be sick over the holidays, or any time, for that matter?

The accumulation of holiday stress and anxiety can last for months after the season is over. High levels of stress can also cause a wide variety of aches and pains. Some experts believe that stress and anxiety is one of the major causes of back pain. There are even treatments for back pain based around stress and anxiety reduction.

Because high levels of stress and anxiety cause your body to produce very damaging chemicals, many harmful health conditions are possible (even if solid scientific evidence has not discovered the definitive link… YET). Signs and symptoms that you are stressed out are if you are having difficulty sleeping, feel tired (even when you first wake up and no matter how much you sleep) or are easily aggravated. If you have these signs, there is a good chance stress and anxieties are the culprits. You may even gain weight from stress and anxiety.

One of the best ways to relieve stress and anxiety is through breathing. Controlled breathing is the simplest and most practiced relaxation technique for anxiety. It involves deep and slow breathing that helps the diaphragm expand and contract steadily, which in turn helps you control your breathing process. Take a deep breath, hold it for a few seconds, and breathe out hardily. Focus on expanding and contracting the stomach rather than the chest. Repeating this empowers one to control the oxygen intake in the body, divert the stress reaction, and regulate the parasympathetic nerves.

Meditation is another great way to relieve stress and anxiety. New research suggests that mindfulness meditation can have benefits for health and performance, including improved immune function, reduced blood pressure and enhanced cognitive function. The study, published in the latest issue of the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science, draws on existing scientific literature to attempt to explain the positive effects. The author of the study, Britta Hazel of Justus Liebig University and Harvard Medical School, pointed out that mindful meditation is not a vague cure-all. According to the November 22, 2011 issue of The Telegraph: Effective mindfulness meditation requires training and practice and it has distinct measurable effects on our subjective experiences, our behavior, and our brain function. Dr. Hazel said: “We hope that further research on this topic will enable a much broader spectrum of individuals to utilize mindfulness meditation as a versatile tool to facilitate change both in psychotherapy and in everyday life.”

Another great way to eliminate or control stress is massage therapy. Massage therapy helps increase blood flow, calm the body, and relax the individual. A great place in San Diego to get massage that we highly recommend is Happy Head Foot Reflexology and Massage in Hillcrest. Their website is www.HappyHeadMassage.com. We recommend the Swedish full body massage for reducing stress.

And finally, if your body has misalignments, pain, or other musculoskeletal ailments that contribute to stress, chiropractic care is a great way to help get rid of these problems. Chiropractic care helps reduce back and neck pain, increase range of motion, and improves overall health. Regular chiropractic care is a great way to not only reduce stress, but to also live pain free. Get more information about chiropractic care at www.BackCareTreatment.com.

Looking for a safe and effective back pain treatment? Breaking Back Pain News: Survey Says Chiropractic Outperforms Other Back Pain Treatments – Even Medication

Saturday, November 12th, 2011

SURVEY SAYS!!!! If you have back pain, you are probably old enough to remember Richard Dawson first yelling that phrase on the popular 70s and 80s game show, The Family Feud. If not – it doesn’t matter – you just learned something interesting about American pop culture and game show history.

 

So, What Does The Survey Really Say?

 

According to an August 9, 2011 article on chiroeco.com, “In a new survey, chiropractic outperformed all other back pain treatments including prescription and over-the-counter medications, deep-tissue massage, yoga, and Pilates. According to the American Chiropractic Association (ACA), this news reinforces the use of conservative care options as a first line of defense against pain.

 

The survey, released by a leading consumer product rating and survey publisher in late July, found that 65 percent of those surveyed using chiropractic care for back pain said it helped a lot. Only 53 percent of respondents using prescription medications found them as helpful.

 

“Additionally, about half of those surveyed who are using, yoga or Pilates said those treatments helped a lot and only 28 percent of respondents using over-the-counter medications reported that they helped a lot.

 

“Current evidence-based guidelines support the use of conservative care such as chiropractic for conditions such as chronic lower back pain.” One serious eye-opener was that only 28% of respondents said over-the-counter medications helped a lot. It has been known for quite some time that common over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAID) have serious side effects. One of these side effects is that an estimated 16,500 people die every year.

 

Natural, conservative options like Chiropractic, deep tissue massage, yoga, and Pilates are most likely better and safer choices when it comes to relieving back pain.

A Few Things To Keep In Mind When Looking For A Chiropractor

Monday, July 18th, 2011
When you need to see a chiropractor, you don't want to leave the job to just anyone. You need somebody you can trust to crack your back. Once you start looking, your head will spin with all the different styles, philosophies and methods they use. So, how do you find the right chiropractic practitioner? 

Word Of Mouth is still the best way to start. Ask your doctor for the names of a few good chiropractors. Your primary care physician will be able to direct you to some chiropractic offices that are well known, trustworthy and reputable. If you have any friends who have had work done, ask them for names. It's always best to go with a clinic that is turning out happy customers whose back problems have vanished because of their excellent quality treatment.

Is the clinic legit? Here are a few easy ways to tell if a practitioner is the real thing. First, they should have completed 4 years of advanced chiropractic training from an accredited institution. Look for their diploma and credentials on the wall. Second, they must have a license to practice in your state. This should be prominently displayed in their clinic. If they don't have it, or if they start telling you reasons why they don't have it, skip them. There are lots of practitioners out there, and not all of them are legitimate.

During the consultation, a good chiropractor will take a thorough history and give you a complete physical, orthopedic, and neurological exam. The chiropractor should palpate for any misalignments or abnormalities. They should look at the areas that hurt as well as the surrounding areas that may indirectly affect your area of complaint. You don't need a lot of x-rays a minimal series might be adequate to diagnose your problem.

Some chiropractors primarily provide treatment for symptomatic relief, while others believe in providing some degree of rehabilitation of underlying problems, and still others do long-term treatment to permanently correct skeletal alignment as much as possible. The differences in these approaches are considerable when it comes to the frequency and duration of treatment prescribed. A good chiropractor will give you honest expectations about how many visits you might need before you see real noticeable results. But most importantly, go with what feels right to you.

Chiropractic Care Can Enhance Your Health And Overall Well-Being

Thursday, May 19th, 2011
A chiropractor is able to alleviate a host of symptoms associated with your musculoskeletal system. The most common symptoms presented to a chiropractor are headaches, migraines, neck, back, and shoulder pain. Chiropractic is a holistic approach to pain management and the alleviation of symptoms associated with misalignments of the joints and vertebrae. Chiropractic care however is intended to extend health beyond just the alleviation of symptoms. Spinal adjustments allow the free flow of nerve impulses which facilitate overall health to the body. As every cell in the human body is governed by nerve impulses, it is vitally important that these nerves send information free of interference. The application of gentle spinal adjustments removes nerve pressure and allows proper nerve conduction.
The main focus in chiropractic care is placed upon the proper alignment of the vertebrae and associated joints. Proper balance and functioning of the joints is of importance to the continued health and well being of every patient. Attention is also placed upon the proper functioning of your neurological system, as pinched nerves and neuralgia can adversely affect a patient’s quality of life.
Posture correction therapy involves the use of exercises to strengthen your core muscles to help better support your entire frame. Once strengthened, they aid in supporting the correct positioning of your spinal column to ensure adequate flexibility and mobility for your entire frame.
An improper posture can result in neck and upper back pain and is a large contributor to headaches and shoulder blade pain. Tingling, burning and numbness experienced in the areas mentioned above are symptoms of pinched nerves and can be alleviated through chiropractic care.
A chiropractic adjustment is the usage of gentle physical pressure applied to an affected joint. The application of external pressure works to correct the misalignment therefore removing fixation of the joints and allowing proper mobility. Your chiropractor is also qualified to give advice to patients regarding nutrition, weight loss and safe exercise routines to help maintain health and fitness.