Month: December 2012

Do the Chiropractors at Denver Chiropractic Center Help Patients With Headaches?

This seems like an easy question to answer, doesn’t it? The answer of course being, YES!!! However, there are many people who suffer with headaches who have never been to a chiropractor or have not even ever considered it as a “good option.”

So, rather than having me “reassure you” that chiropractic works GREAT for headache management, let’s look at the scientific literature to see if “they” (the scientific community) agree or not.

In a 2011 meta-analysis, researchers reviewed journals published through 2009 and found 21 articles that met their inclusion criteria and used the results to develop treatment recommendations. Researchers discovered there is literature support utilizing Chiropractic care for the treatment of migraine headaches of either episodic or chronic migraine. Similarly, support for the Chiropractic treatment of cervicogenic headaches, or headaches arising from the neck region (see last month’s Health Update), was reported

In addition, joint mobilization (the “non-cracking” type of neck treatment such as figure 8 stretching and manual traction) or strengthening of the deep neck flexor muscles may improve symptoms in those suffering from cervicogenic headaches as well. The literature review also found low load craniocervical mobilization may be helpful for longer term management of patients with episodic or chronic tension-type headaches where manipulation was found to be less effective.

We add Active Release Techniques to this treatment arsenal to release tension in the muscles in the neck and at the base of the skull. These tight muscles are often the overlooked culprit in people with headaches,

Okay, we realize this is all fairly technical, so sorry about that. But, it is important to “hear” this so when people ask you why are going to a chiropractor for your headaches, you can say that not only that it helps a lot, but there are a lot of scientific studies that support it too!

Bottom line is that it DOES REALLY HELP and maybe, most importantly, it helps WITHOUT drugs and their related side effects. Just ask someone who has taken some of the headache medications what their side-effects were and you’ll soon realize a non-drug approach should at least be tried first since it carries few to no side effects.

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. 

Low Back Pain, Balance, and Foot Orthotics

Low back pain (LBP) can result from many causes, and sometimes it just occurs for reasons that are not clear, such as the accumulation of stresses that occur over time. Many causes of low back pain have been described such as bending over “wrong,” combined bending and twisting, lifting, over reaching, climbing, sitting too long, repetitious activities at home or work, sports injuries, being out of shape, and so on. But what about balance? Because poor balance leads to falling, which is the #1 cause of injuries in the elderly, ANYTHING that we can do to improve our balance should help prevent falls and hence low back injuries. Let’s look at strategies to improve our balance…

First, let’s measure our ability to balance by using a simple test you can do yourself. Stand on one leg in the corner of a room or in a doorway where you can easily grab onto something if you feel like you’re going to fall. Try to do this without holding on to anything, first with your eyes open and a second time with your eyes closed. If you have a stopwatch, click it when you start and stop (when you put your foot down). Otherwise, count, “…1001, 1002, 1003, etc.” Studies have shown that for those under 60 years old, you’re “normal” if you can balance on one leg with your eyes open for 30 seconds and 25 seconds with your eyes closed. Between ages 60-69, normal is 23 sec. (eyes open) and 10 sec. (eyes closed) is normal. If you’re 70-79 years old, normal is 14 seconds (eyes open) and 4 seconds (eyes closed). Give it a try! Notice how “normal” drops as we age. From 25 sec. to 4 sec. between age 59 and 70 is pretty dramatic! No wonder falling is so common among the elderly!

So, now that you’ve tested yourself, I’m guessing you aren’t too impressed with your balance skills. The question now is, how can we improve our balance? Performing balance exercises with a rocker, wobble board or cushion is VERY EFFECTIVE! You’ll be surprised that if you use this for 10 minutes a day, the improvement in balance is significant in just 2 weeks. Another method takes no effort at all on your part, and that is the use of  made foot orthotics. Simply known as arch supports, foot orthotics (the good “prescription” kind) correct the rolling in or out of the heel bone, referred to as pronation (rolling in = most common) or supination (rolling out) by wedging the heel of the orthotic/arch support. This stabilizes the ankle joint, reduces the inward or outward shift at the knee and hip joints, and as a result, improves our balance.

Results of a recent study proved this to be the case. Researchers studied 13 subjects over 65 years of age who reported at least 1 unexpected fall in the past 12 months and measured their balance skills using a similar test as the one you just tried as well as 3 other tests (tandem stance, tandem gait, and alternating step tests) twice before and twice after starting use of  foot orthotic intervention (immediately after and 2 weeks later). In each of the 4 balance tests, improvement was statistically significant in the post-tests and 2-week later follow-up tests PROVING that balance is effectively improved when wearing foot orthotics. We recommend doing BOTH the exercises and the use of  foot orthotics to obtain even better results. Since falling is such a common occurrence at any age, especially in those over 60-65 years old, these simple strategies seem like a “no-brainer” to implement into a treatment program, especially for people with poor bone density at high risk for fractures.

At Denver Chiropractic Center we offer the-semi-custom Aline Foot Suspension system. In our opinion these are better than rigid orthotics because they allow your foot’s natural arches to function while providing a moderate amount of support. This allows your foot to naturally strengthen its intrinsic muscles. Call us for your more info 303.300.0424.

What happened in Vegas, Dr. Stripling’s Self-Help video for Neck Pain, and this week’s 1-Page Health News, from Denver Chiropractic Center

This weekend Meredith and I (Glenn) jetted off to Las Vegas so I could teach at the Active Release Techniques seminar there, and so we could hang out at night. Meredith saw (or almost saw, I never did get the story straight) the Victoria Secret models and Magic Johnson (not together). I did not. Anyway, as always Vegas was fun for a couple of days and then got really old really quickly.

Dr. Stripling and Keri held down the fort here at the office, and shot a video on a great neck stretch for those of you who work at a desk all day. The link is below.

Next week is the last week of the year for us, and we’ll be closed from December 22 through January 1, opening back up on January 2. Dr. Hyman will be on call in case of emergency. His cell phone # will be on our voicemail.

Mental Attitude: Reaction To Stress. How people react to stress determines how that stress will affect their health. Study volunteers were separated in two groups: 1) those who let their troubles affect their emotional state and 2) those who didn’t let stress bother them at all. At a 10-year follow up, those who let stress affect them (group 1) were more likely to suffer from chronic health problems. Penn State, November 2012

Health Alert: Hip Replacement and Stroke Risk. Hemorrhagic stroke and ischemic stroke risk is ~4% higher within 2 weeks of total hip replacement surgery. A hemorrhagic stroke is brought on by bleeding in the brain, while an ischemic stroke is brought on by arterial blockage. Total hip replacement is extremely common in the United States. Around 1 million hip replacement surgeries are done around the world every year, 300,000 in the United States alone. Stroke, November 2012

Diet: Vitamin D Levels Decreasing? Women with health issues such as arthritis, hypothyroidism, cancer, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis are much more likely to have inadequate levels of vitamin D during seasons with decreased daylight. 28% of women had deficient levels and 33% had insufficient levels of vitamin D. Women taking supplements were able to significantly elevate their vitamin D levels.
American Society for Clinical Pathology, November 2012

Exercise: Exercise When You’re Sick? The choice to exercise or not sometimes depends on the sickness or disease. Our bodies work harder and use more energy when we are fighting an illness. If symptoms are above the neck (sore throat, runny nose), it is probably okay to exercise. If you’re sick but still want to exercise, simply reduce your intensity and duration. You should not exercise if you have body aches, fever, diarrhea or vomiting, shortness of breath or chest congestion, dizziness or light-headedness. When resuming your regular exercise routine, try starting with 50% effort and 50% duration. Loyola University Health System, November 2012

Active Release Techniques: Sliding Nerves? Nerves need to slide past muscles and other structures in your body. As tight muscles put pressure or pinch nerves, they interrupt the blood’s circulation to the nerve. This can cause symptoms like carpal tunnel in the wrist sciatica in the hip and thigh, and many more problems. Active Release Techniques is the only system that specifically includes treatment protocols for releasing nerve entrapments. Note: Dr. Glenn Hyman is still the only Active Release Techniques instructor practicing in Denver.

Wellness/Prevention: Staying Healthy! “Check out Dr. Stripling’s Self-Help video for Neck Pain:
http://www.denverback.com/?p=966

Quote: “So many people spend their health gaining wealth, and then have to spend their wealth to regain their

Check out Dr. Glenn’s Triathlon Coaches- Cody and Kathy Waite of Endurance Performance Coaching

http://www.epcmultisport.com/

For those of you who are interested in taking your endurance racing to the next level, I can’t speak highly enough about Cody and Kathy Waite and their coaches at Endurance Performance Coaching.

EPC Multisport Team Night at Adrenalin Cycles this Thursday, Dec. 6, at 6:30 pm.

This is your opportunity to renew your club membership for 2013 or join for the first time. Membership rates are discounted now until the end of the year. Come to Team Night to socialize with friends, learn about upcoming cycling and triathlon training, order team clothing, and take advantage of discounted deals from two of our amazing sponsors: Shimano and Pearl Izumi. We will also be unveiling our new Incentive Program for the new season.

Adrenalin Cycles:

My weekend at the Olympics, Dr. Stripling’s self-help video and this week’s 1-page health news!

Dr. Hyman spent this weekend learning all about Olympic Lifting at the Crossfit Olympic Lifting Coaches’ certification. Two full days of barbell snatches, cleans, and jerks. These lifts have a powerful application to most sports, even triathlon. Stay tuned for more info as we’re working on creating a relationship with a crossfit gym that’s close to the office. Dr. Hyman will be in the office Monday through Wednesday this week, and then he’ll be out of the office teaching for Active Release Techniques this coming weekend.

Dr. Stripling has started his weekly Denver Chiropractic Center TV segment on You Tube. In this week’s installment, Dr. S shows you how to help yourself when you feel that nagging pain between the shoulder blades. You can find these videos on our blog. The link is at the bottom of this email.

Health Alert: Children, Cars and Second-Hand Smoke. Just ten minutes in the back seat of a car with a smoker in the front seat increased a child’s exposure to harmful pollutants by 30%, even with the front windows completely rolled down. British Medical Journal, November 2012

Diet: Cholesterol and Probiotics. Two daily doses (200mg) of a probiotics lowered “bad” (LDL) and total cholesterol in study participants. Probiotics are live microorganisms (naturally occurring bacteria in the gut) thought to have beneficial effects. Common sources are yogurt or dietary supplements. Those taking the probiotics had LDL levels 11.6% lower than those on placebo after nine weeks. American Heart Association, November 2012

Exercise: Belly Fat and Sleep Quality? Losing weight can directly aid in improving sleep quality among obese or overweight people. Sleep quality was meaningfully associated with weight loss, either from changes in diet or a healthy diet combined with exercise. Sleep quality improvement was also observed with a loss in belly fat. With an average loss of 15 pounds and 15% belly fat, sleep scores improved by 20%. Chronic sleep disruptions can elevate the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, and stroke. American Heart Association, November 2012

Active Release / Chiropractic: Spinal Degenerative Joint Disease. Spinal DJD (degenerative joint disease) occurs in most people as early as 40 years of age. The degeneration is due to gravity, major traumas, and repetitive micro-traumas (activities of daily living). Once the spine degenerates, simple mechanical compression (moving) can change nerve impulses, and the central nervous system may interpret that as pain. Pain, 1977 (Maintain that spinal mobility by getting ART and chiropractic treatment!)

Wellness/Prevention: Sleep and The Immune System. Sleep deprivation increases the risk for developing inflammation related illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis, and diabetes. Biological Psychiatry, September 2008

Quote: “Never confuse motion with action.” ~ Ben Franklin

Video Link: Dr. Stripling’s self help for mid and upper back pain (click)