Summer of Health

Summer as a kid was the greatest thing in the world. You slept in, swam in the lake all day, and played Goldeneye on the N64 until way too late. It is not as cool as an adult, I get to wake up to a house full of sleeping kids (and wife) that complain that I am making too much noise while getting ready for work, I receive updates of all the fun that they are having at the lake or water slides, and when I come home they are all tired bumps on the couch.

The other problem with being an adult during summer is my kids keep egging me on to do stuff that I have not done in years. In my mind, I can still do the flip off the dock or slalom on one ski like I did back when I was a teenager. Unfortunately, it has been over twenty years since I have done either of those. I might be able to complete the task, but it would make my body move in ways that it is no longer used to moving. That will likely result in aches, pains, and my wife trying to tell me that I am too old to do stuff like that anymore.

Age does not have as much to do with it as our level of activity. Start today by moving, doing strengthening exercises, and improving flexibility. Gradually build back up to what you used to do, and you will be surprised at how young you might actually feel. Be patient with yourself, you are not going to regain overnight the mobility that you have neglected for years, but it will start to return. Chiropractic is a great way to help undo those years of neglect. Adjustments help mobilize joints that have become dysfunctional, and massage therapy will help improve that tension that you are carrying in your muscles. Give us a call, 888-5477, and start today to reclaim your summer activities!

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Common Conditions

I often get asked what are the most common issues that I see in the office. Here’s a little David Letterman style Top Five List (yes, I’m old enough to remember when David Letterman was funny and not a crazy old man).

  1. FRONT RIB PAIN. I see this often enough that I’m never surprised that it is an issue. The pain usually occurs along the chest bone or an inch or two outside of there. It can be a sharp pain when you breath or move, and it usually is quite painful. A specific adjustment can help fix this condition and make it not scary to sneeze.
  2. SHOULDER PAIN. Shoulders fickle by nature. Nolan Ryan could throw a bajillion pitches in his career, but my shoulder aches after one snowball. The shoulder pain can start after a trauma, or it can come out of seemingly nowhere. Whatever the cause, chiropractic treatments, massage techniques, and exercises can help you rehab.
  3. HEADACHES. Headaches are terrible. They can shut you down. They can make you irritable, grumpy, and cranky. I hate to hear someone tell me that they have “normal” headaches. There is no such thing as a normal headache and that tells me that they are so used to pain that it has become a normal, expected part of their life. Many headaches are caused by dysfunctional joints in the neck that create pain and tension that leads to headaches. Adjustments are a great way to treat most headaches.
  4. NECK PAIN. Neck pain is usually accompanied by headaches, but not always. Sometimes there is pain traveling into the shoulder or arm, or shooting into the back and shoulder blade. Neck pain can make it hard to think, drive, or even sleep. Chiropractic care has been shown to be an effective and safe treatment for neck pain.
  5. BACK PAIN. There is a reason that chiropractors are readily associated with back pain. It’s what we do, and we do it pretty well. Studies have shown that chiropractic treatments are effective on low back pain, and chiropractic can even help prevent surgeries. Workers tend to miss less time from work if they seek chiropractic as their first line of defense.

There are many other conditions that we see at the office, but these are the most common (at least I think so. I haven’t really kept track and I don’t know how to look it up). Give us a call if you have an issue from this list. Give us a call if you have something going on that is not on the list and we can talk about whether or not chiropractic care can help!

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Spring Cleaning Without Pain

This is a great time of year. The snow is leaving, the birds are returning, and it is time to start spending time outside. Growing up, my bossy wonderful aunts loved to include us cousins in the spring-cleaning chores. By include us, I mean they would point at something that needed cleaned and then they would go inside and do aunt stuff. If one of my aunts is reading this and getting offended, then I guess the truth hurts a little bit, doesn’t it?

Every year, I see a surge in patients that hurt themselves cleaning up for the warm weather ahead. These injuries can almost always be avoided. Here are a few tips:

  1. WARMUP AND START SLOW. You likely have not been lifting or moving a lot this winter, especially with the gyms and pools being closed for way too long. You know that you can not just start running without getting back in shape, and you hopefully wouldn’t walk into the gym and rack up your max weight and try to lift it. Chores around the house deserve the same reasonable approach. Start with lighter jobs and work your way toward heavier ones.
  2. TAKE SMALL BITES. Make the extra trip instead of trying to carry it all at one time. Take frequent breaks when doing jobs that require you to be bent over, that involve repetitive movements, or that put you in an awkward position. Don’t be a hero, or you’ll find yourself on the couch with an achy back.
  3. MAINTAIN GOOD POSTURE. So many chores inside and outside of the house can put you in a position that hard on your back, neck, knees or shoulders. As I mentioned above, being bent over, or doing repetitive back movements can cause injury. Your back is the only one you have, and those weeds will still be there after your break.
  4. TAKE BREAKS! Breaks will help you break up (ha! Get it?) your movements and will give your body a chance to recover. You can do other less physically demanding chores during the breaks to stay on schedule, and that would help keep you from cooling down and getting stiff.

As always, getting adjusted will help your body move better before you do physical work and will help prevent injuries. Getting adjusted after will help you recover and alleviate any aches or pains that you might have acquired from your hard work.

 

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Chiropractic and Heart Health

I think most of us know how important our heart is. We are in a world of hurt if it stops beating. The brain is important, but congress has shown that people can function just fine without one. Heart health should be a priority for all of us. You hopefully are wondering how chiropractic can help keep your heart strong and healthy.

First, I want to make it clear that chiropractic cannot cure heart disease, it won’t lower your cholesterol and definitely doesn’t replace your cardiologist. But it can help keep our heart healthy. Often, heart issues are associated with obesity. One of the major reasons for obesity is chronic pain. If people hurt, they tend not to move as much as they should. Not moving tends to cause weight gain. Weight gain kills.

Don’t let an ache, pain, or injury keep you on the couch. Chiropractic is a drug-free way to address the pain that is often the root cause of issues like weight gain, depression, and an increasingly sedentary lifestyle. Chiropractic adjustments and other treatments like massage therapy can help you feel better without worrying about pharmaceutical interactions or side effects. Call 888-5477 to get feeling better and moving more today.

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Cold Weather Aches

The first week of January is always interesting. The Holidays are mostly behind us and it is about now that we realize that winter just started. The cold and darkness can be difficult on us mentally and physically. The ice, snow, and cold can make it dangerous to do things outside. This is not the time of year to be puttering around the garden or to be going on relaxing evening walks as the sun sets. How do we manage the tightness, aches, and pains that are so common in winter?

We must find a way to move, even if most of our avenues to do that are taken away. Thankfully, we live in 2021 and there are options available to us that did not exist 20 years ago. We can look up anything from yoga sessions and low-impact workouts to high-intensity-interval-training options. Shoot, Richard Simmons’ routines are still out there on the internet. It might not be what we want to do, or what we are used to doing, but it is better than sitting around and turning into Jabba the Hutt.

Nutrition is another way to help with the cold weather issues. Our bodies still have an evolutionary tendency to crave “comfort foods” during cold weather. They warm us and help us store fat during what historically were lean times. We can find a placate our instincts but still help ourselves by eating healthy stews and soups instead of delicious roasts covered in scrumptious gravy. An occasional soup bone or hambone can help provide our bodies with nutrients that help our joints.

Getting adjusted regularly is a great way to feel better during these cold months. The adjustment will help the joints move, it will help us feel looser, and will alleviate those aches and pains. Call 888-5477 to schedule your adjustment or massage, or both!

I love going to the gym, it helps with my mental stress as much or more than it helps me physically.

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The Chiropractic Treatment

Many people are familiar with chiropractic care, but they are not quite sure what that means. When they come into the office for the first time, they usually ask questions like “what should I expect?”, “will this hurt?” or “you look more professional and handsome online that you do in person”. I guess that last one was not a question, but I do hear that a lot. They think that I photoshopped the pictures on the website. Basically, what people want to know is what the treatment entails and how will it help.

The main component of a chiropractic treatment is the adjustment. The adjustment is a way of introducing motion into a joint that is stuck or dysfunctional. This can be done a few ways, the most common is when the chiropractor uses his hands to quickly manipulate the joint. This can create a pop or cracking sound, called a cavitation. That cavitation occurs because the movement in the joint releases pressure, and that quick release causes an audible noise. Some people cannot stand that sound or feeling, so they prefer a tool called an Activator. It does the same thing but is gentler and does not create the cavitation.

The adjustment is important because it helps restore proper motion and allows the body to correct itself. We almost always couple the adjustment with muscle work that may include massage therapy, trigger point therapy, Graston Technique, and others. The goal is to reduce tension, swelling, and inflammation in the muscles, which can all help decrease the muscle pull on the joints and make the adjustment more effective.

Chiropractic visits should be relieving, relaxing, and rejuvenating. They can help a variety of ailments, from headaches and neck pain to back pain and sciatica. Call the office at 888-5477 to schedule your relieving appointment today.

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Modern Fitness

When DeA and I were engaged, we created a gift registry. This is a convenient way to let people know that they should get you a present for your wedding. And it cannot be just any present, it has to be one from the list. One of the items that DeA picked was a Jack LaLanne Juicer. She was so excited to turn $12 of grapes into $5 of grape juice. Thankfully, someone did buy us the juicer, and we tried it out. I was amazed that carrots turned into carrot juice, apples turned into apple juice, and peaches clogged the thing up.

It was probably five years later that I found out that Jack LaLanne was more than a juicer magnate. He was a fitness pioneer, so much so that Arnold Schwarzenegger called him the “Godfather of Modern Fitness”. He started one of the first gyms in the US, he had a TV show for over 30 years, and he advocated for women to strength train, something that has proven to be essential for their bone and metabolic health. But you know the coolest thing about Jack? He was a Doctor of Chiropractic!

It should not be surprising that someone so focused on health, fitness, and function was a chiropractor. That is what we do. We help your body function how it should and keep you moving. This care has helped many patients stay active as they age. It is never too late to get moving. You might not get as jacked and swoll Jack or me, but even little improvements now will pay huge dividends down the road. Call today to get yourself feeling, moving, and being better.

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Why Chiropractic Care is Considered an Essential Service

Why is chiropractic considered essential? There are many reasons, but here are the three biggest:

  1. We can reduce the burden at the hospital. A large number of ER visits are due to musculoskeletal problems. Almost all of those cases can be evaluated and treated at England Chiropractic instead of the hospital or clinic. It is safer for the patient to be seen in our office because it limits exposure to sick people.
  2. Your back health is essential to your overall health. Pain can wear us down, mentally and physically. It can make us more susceptible to illness. By helping you feel and function better, chiropractic care can help your immune system.
  3. We care for health care workers, first responders, and other essential services. While some of us are bored at home, others are working harder than ever. We already treat many of those hard workers, and by staying open we can help do our small part to keep things moving toward recovery.

We wish you all well and will remain open as long as it is prudent and safe to do so.

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Spring Training

Spring is a wonderful time.
The birds start singing again, the sun stays around past 4pm, and I don’t feel guilty kicking my kids out of the house. Spring is a time of hope and renewal. As the days stay lighter longer, we tend to be more active. I’m always a fan of people being more active, but it’s easy to be too gung-ho early in the year. We still remember what we were doing at the end of summer, and think we can just jump back into those activities. Unfortunately, we need to acclimate ourselves to activities if we have not done them for a few months.

Winter is long and dark, and the decreased activity can decrease our flexibility and endurance. Don’t think that you can get right back to walking five miles if you haven’t walked any farther from your couch to the fridge since October. And I know that the flower beds need prepped for planting, but please don’t try to knock them out in one long day.

Take things easy to begin the spring, and you will find that you are better off in the long run. Chiropractic care is the best way to deal with any aches or pains as you do get back into the swing of spring. Don’t let a small problem now keep you from your long evening walks later this summer.

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Staying Active in the Winter

Winter begins as a magic wonderland of snow. That only lasts until about December 26th, or maybe January 2nd, depending on the person. After that it turns into a bleak, dark, depressing string of days that get dark at 3pm and spring seems far away. Winter can wear you down mentally and physically. It’s hard to do anything when it looks like midnight by the time you get off work. That lack of activity has been shown to contribute to the winter blues. How can we stay active when the world is cold, and pitchers and catchers don’t report for another month?

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Little things do add up, for good and for bad. Take an extra lap around the kitchen before grabbing that snack. Go up and down the stairs once or twice more than you need to. Get up off the couch a few times during commercials. Those extra steps will add up more than you think.
  2. It’s never too late to pick up a new hobby. We have some great trails in the valley to try snowshoeing, snowmobiling or dog-sled racing. Start slow and don’t compare yourself against people that are already good at it. Everybody starts somewhere. A word of caution: I strongly recommend against cross-country skiing. That’s not a professional opinion, that’s just common sense because it’s boring work with no payoff at the end.
  3. A gym membership or fitness class is likely more affordable than you think. There are great options in the valley, and we are happy to help you find the best fit for you.
  4. Watch my kids for a day. Seriously, they will run you into the ground and you will feel great after all that energy is burned off. Tell you what, I’ll even make that a free service. I’m just that generous.

Staying active is an important part of our health and wellness. Chiropractic care is especially important during these winter months. It can help you feel less stiff and achy on the cold mornings, and chiropractic will help you move and feel your best. Give us a call at 888-5477 to schedule an appointment or to ask any questions that you may have.

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