Chiropractic for Sciatic Pain: Does it work?

Sciatic can be a pain in the butt…literally. Sciatic pain is no fun. If you have experienced it then you know what I am talking about. With this type of pain the sciatic nerve which is the largest nerve in the body, can become entrapped or not move correctly thus causing pain. There are many structures involved that could be affecting this nerve and we will get into the hows soon. Chiropractic is one solution to this type of pain. Adjustments are one facet of chiropractic care. Other treatments include trigger point therapy and forms of nerve mobilization that helps to mobilize the nerve.

Getting to the nitty gritty now. The how behind why you feel sciatic nerve pain.

NERVE ENTRAPMENT

The sciatic nerve is formed from lumbar and sacral nerves. So understanding anatomy in detail will help to understand why this nerve gets impacted the way it does. Below is a picture of where the sciatic nerves come together to form.

Sciatic nerve formation

Sciatic nerve formation

This is super important to know because if you notice the muscle near the nerve on the left as you are looking at the picture, it is very near the sciatic nerve. This is one area where the nerve can get entrapped and you start to feel the tingling and pain. This type of pain can be really bad when you sit for long periods of time because the pressure is being applied even more when you sit down.

One way to get rid of this entrapment is to get trigger point therapy specifically geared towards the piriformis muscle. This doesn’t feel the greatest at first but it will lessen the tingling and pain from the entrapment.

BULGING/HERNIATED DISC

Another way that the sciatic nerve can be affected is bulging or herniated discs. This type of pain is specific to the level of the disc. So if the disc affected is L5 then the S1 nerve will be affected which follows a certain path into the leg and foot. This type of pain can be debilitation because you have the back pain from the disc as well as the leg pain. Conservative treatment should be tried first to help the disc heal and the nerve. It is said that at any given time roughly 50% of people walk around with disc bulges or herniations, but some don’t feel pain at all besides discomfort.

Certain chiropractic techniques, such as flexion distraction, focus on the low back and disc pain. These types of treatments will take about 8-12 visits to see noticeable results but it can help with the really sharp acute pain of a disc herniation.

Along with adjustments certain maneuvers can be utilized to free up the nerve. Nerve mobilizations help to free up the restrictions that may be present with the bulging/herniated disc.


These types of treatments should be tried first before considering surgery. Surgery is an option for this type of pain but with chiropractic or physical therapy the surgery can be abated. Conservative treatments are successful most of the time if performed by a competent Doctor. Finding the right fit is key for your condition!

I would love to know your thoughts on the subject!

CrossFit and Chiropractic

Injuries can set us all back even if not competing. It drags us down so that we have to rest and recover. Without the rest and recovery phase you might not get back into top shape or even compete at all. That is why it is super important to prevent these injuries and when they do happen treat them quickly.

More and more research is saying that the quicker you provide healthy movement in care the quicker the injury can heal. What does this mean for CrossFit athletes? First by getting chiropractic care on a maintenance basis, the chiropractor can assess to see if you are at an increase risk for injury by range of motion, tissue function and pain. Second, once identified those movement hindrances can be corrected with care. Third, if you get injured seeing a chiropractor first thing can help speed up recovery and healing. Fourth, It can improve your performance.

All of this means you can get back to training and competing. So let’s delve into each of those aspects.

ASSESSING FOR INJURY

If you knew that you could injure yourself if you kept it up would you prevent it? Of course. An injury can set you back from getting in the gym. That is no bueno. By getting regular chiropractic care you can easily see if there is an increased risk of injury from faulty movement and biomechanical alterations. A chiropractor trained to see these things in athletes will better to help form a plan to prevent these things.

TREATING INJURIES

Once an injury occurs, which if you are an athlete more than likely has happened, you want quick treatment that is effective. Chiropractic can help to treat these injuries quickly and naturally so you are not out for long periods of time. Injuries don’t have to keep you out for long if you get it treated quickly. We try to prevent surgeries because that can be an even bigger set back or career ending. The point is to get quick and effective treatment of these injuries so that you can get back to doing work.

IMPROVED PERFORMANCE

When there is an imbalance in the structures of the body you won’t be able to get the performance that you want. When the pelvis is misaligned it shifts the center of gravity to the side shifting the body mechanics. Try having that lack of movement in that plane and then go PR squat. You will not be able to get the best range of motion as well as muscle power. When the pelvis is sitting right then you can get deeper squat and more power coming out of the squat. This equals better performance in lifting.

In short CrossFit and Chiropractic goes hand in hand when improving performance and decreasing injuries. This equals more time training and competing and less time sitting around.

How Chiropractic can benefit weightlifters

Chiropractic has many different benefits for any individual. However athletes are one population that can benefit even more from chiropractic care. Athletes, weightlifters included, are exposed to different joint mechanics and stressors that can cause damage to the joints, ligaments, or tendons. Even a little damage to the joints can later cause harm in the form of arthritis or even tears of the soft tissue which needs surgery to repair. Chiropractic focuses on preventing those things from happening by increasing ROM in the joints as well as correct length of the soft tissues. Below we we get into the benefits of getting chiropractic care for weightlifters.

IMPROVE PERFORMANCE

If there was something to improve your performance in a natural way without the use of supplements would you do it? With getting adjustments of the spine and pelvis it helps to keep your body weight distributed evenly. When there is a misalignment of the pelvis especially, then the weight of your body is shifted. Add that lifting heavier weights then you are increasing the risk of injury by a lot. By getting adjusted on a maintenance basis it will keep your spine in the correct alignment thus allowing you to use your body’s biomechanics to your benefit. This means lifting more, and getting more out of your workouts, to get those gains you want.

PREVENT INJURIES

Another great benefit of chiropractic is the prevention of injuries. You wouldn’t want to wait until something was so bad that it needed surgery? I don’t think anyone would want that. Chiropractic allows the body to be in proper alignment so as not to injure the tissues in the spine and extremities. Along with adjustments a skilled chiropractor can give you specific exercises to prevent other injuries from occurring.

TREAT INJURIES

Not only can you prevent injuries from occurring but treat them in a way that is not with drugs or surgery. Getting treatment early in the injury can greatly decrease the return to workout time. A chiropractor can also use other modalities to decrease pain from the injury and to speed up recovery. One such way is kinesio taping.

Weightlifters should try to find a chiropractor who has some experience working with athletes. These chiropractors will be accustomed to seeing these types of injuries. Chiropractic for weightlifters can greatly help you recover and perform better.

Stress 101: Feeling burnt out

Stress affects us all in varying degrees. When the feelings of stress override our natural ability to bounce back we are drained and even more stressed. In this post we will talk about what is called HPA axis dysfunction and the progression of burnout.

Stress is actually a good thing. It becomes bad when it is chronic and we don’t get the rest we need to for our bodies to continue keeping on. There are many ways to talk about stress but today we are specifically talking about the HPA axis and it’s role in the chemical control of stress.

When stress is perceived, our hypothalamus, a part of the brain, releases a hormone called CRH which stimulates another part of the brain, pituitary gland, to secrete ACTH. ACTH is another hormone, that directly acts on the adrenal gland to secrete cortisol. Cortisol is one of the main indicators of a stress response in the body that can be measured within saliva.

Normally these hormones are kept in a fine balance so that there are no extremes. This is mostly performed on circadian cycle, or your sleep cycle. Cortisol normally should be dominant in the morning to wake up and taper off throughout the day for when you sleep. Cortisol acts mainly to shunt activity away from long term metabolic processes such as digestion toward those that mainly keep you alive, like finding something to eat. When cortisol is secreted on a chronic basis it literally shuts off activity to places that help to regulate homeostasis. Such things as digestion gets messed up and doesn’t function right. It suppresses immune system function as well.

So if you are under chronic stress for a long time even though you may feel like everything is going okay, your cells say a different matter. So that feeling of burn out is literally true you are burning through your bodies cells and tissues in this state.

So when thinking of stress it is not just, “ I feel stressed all the time”, it is literally breaking down tissues in your body that helps you to function normally such as brain tissue.

As we go further in depth into the physiology of the stress response I want to point your attention to the fact that cortisol is great when it is regulated the right way. Further blog posts will discuss the solution to the feeling of burnt out.

Cheers!

Dr. K

How to Heal Tendinitis and tendinopathies with specific oils

Tendinitis can be very painful condition and is seen a lot in overuse type injuries such as in sports where they are doing the same motion over and over again. It can also be seen in the workplace where there is a repetitive motion. Whatever the case conservative management of this condition is well documented with certain exercises and stretches. Combining certain oils with a treatment plan can help increase the success rate of the tendon healing.

One of the greatest oil to use for tendon injuries is lemongrass. This oil has been used for a long time in the flavoring industry but has great properties that allow it to heal tendons. It consists of Geranial, Neral, Geraniol, and Farnesol. Those are some fancy words! Specifically Geranial and Neral are compounds that have potent anti-inflammatory effects on tissues. This means decreased inflammation in the tendons that are being overused so that they can heal.

Another oil that has great benefits for the tissues of the body is helichrysum. This powerful oil has neuroprotective affects on the nerve tissue. The tendons that are inflammed are hitting on the nerves surrounding the sheath which causes pain. This can further damage the nerves as well as the tendons. By using this oil it can protect and provide some pain relief to the nerves.

Mixing the oils:

Using both of the oils in a mix can greatly improve the health of your tendons along with a stretching and treatment program. This will speed up recovery so that you can get back to doing what you love.

I mix 10 drops of each oil in a little baby food jar and fill it up halfway with MCT oil. This will dilute is so that it is easier to apply and the oil will last longer. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to reach out to me!

Cheers!

Dr. K

Recommended supplements to keep your liver healthy

Your liver. It weighs in at 3.5 pounds and is officially the largest whole organ in your body. But what does the liver do? For starters it helps to make bile to digest fats, cleanses your body from the impurities and toxic chemicals, as well as balance out blood sugar. It has been said it is tied to 1000’s of different interactions in your body.

So we have to keep this thing going healthy to live a long and well life. But how to do that? Eating the right foods especially around this time of year is important but if you don’t want to get rid of the delicious food then here are some supplements to help keep the liver going strong and healthy!

Turmeric

Turmeric helps to fight off free radicals in your liver and body to decrease the amount of mutations that can occur! Mutations in DNA= bad. So by taking this supplement it helps to reduce the load the liver has to go through when detoxing your body of free radicals.

Milk Thistle

This herb looks really neat as the plant but the benefits from milk thistle for the liver are very well researched and this is even prescribed in countries in Europe for liver diseases. There has been research done in Europe that Milk Thistle alone can help the liver with Hepatitis B infection. Milk Thistle alone! But combined with other therapies it boosted the effects to get rid of the infection sooner! This is a powerful herb.

These two supplements will help to keep the liver safe and improve it’s already stellar capabilities. Reach for these this season to help keep your liver healthy!

Cheers!

Dr. K

The busy parent: 5 ways to get well in all aspects of your life without breaking the bank account!

Wellness. What is wellness to you? Like most of us wellness isn’t really defined in order for us to completely understand it. Well you are in luck, we are going to do just that. Wellness in our practice means we treat the whole person with natural ways to get there. That means we are not just concerned with your pain but healthy food choices which may include supplements (don’t worry, they are not going to break your pocket book), weight management, and mental health.

These things make up the whole you. Your physical needs, food needs, and mental needs. That covers a lot of ground!

Now to the nitty gritty. Here are 5 ways to get well in all aspects of your life!

  1. Exercise- Can’t stress this one enough. Getting a healthy amount of physical exercise is key. It helps keep your joints flexible and moving right. It helps with your mind. When you exercise it releases feel good chemicals that you and your brain love! Keep doing it and you will start to feel better. Consistency is key. It could be that you love basketball. So play basketball a few times a week. It doesn’t have to be complex. Just get up and move in healthy ways!

  2. Eat more vegetables- This one gets beat over the head too many times but here goes. It just needs to happen. Getting more variety of vegetables and fruit helps with digestion, antioxidants, healthy liver, vitamins, minerals and co-factors. The co-factors are things in the plants that you can’t get elsewhere. So increase those veggies. Start small and build from there, even if it is just one piece of broccoli a day!

  3. Supplements- Oh the dreaded supplement conversation. Supplements (from brands that are trustworthy) work when used right. It is a supplement to your diet so getting a good diet is the main thing. However you need more of certain things that the diet sometimes lacks (especially if your diet consists of donuts and a pepsi) :)

  4. Think good thoughts- Well now that I said it, it might be a little harder to do. You have all probably heard just try harder. Like if that was the answer I would have done it by now! But in reality a positive outlook is crucial in getting well. Above all else surround yourself with positive people. When the circumstances around you fall apart and they will, it is awesome to have your mind right to keep moving. Do this: write on a post it note your number one goal and put it on your mirror. This way you are always looking at the goal in front of you. Keeps you going!

  5. Chiropractic care- You didn’t think I would put this in here did you? Well hear me out. Chiropractic care helps people keep moving. Hence tying into the number 1 thing on this wellness list. Moving healthily= feeling better. So in essence chiropractic care helps you to move in a healthier way. So get checked!

If you have any questions about the above list or wellness in general then shoot me a question in the comments below! And if you like the blog post consider sharing it. That way you are a part of spreading the good word of wellness!

Cheers!

Dr. K

MUST READ: One of the best ways to fight inflammation

What in the world is inflammation anyway? That word gets tossed around quite a bit and does anyone really know what it is? Well there are some smart people out there (way smarter than me) that know what it’s all about.

Basically inflammation is how the body heals. It’s actually a good thing, to a point. See when you get a cut or injury a ligament or bone your body recruits certain chemicals that are naturally produced in your body that help to bring blood and white blood cells to the area of injury to clean out the injury. This is good! Then your body starts to lay down certain collagen fibers that help to repair what was injured. This is good too!

This is under the umbrella of inflammation. So why is inflammation bad? For starters if that pathway gets stuck in a perpetual state because the injured site keeps getting injured or if the signals from your brain are saying, “someone get down to the injury!” then it gets stuck in that state, which long term degrades your body tissues and causes more damage.

So, what to do?

Through specific means of getting the right messages. Easy right? Well not so much but there are some ways to help the body out and get the chemicals just right to help you heal. That is through supplementation of turmeric and bromelain. I take these two supplements combined in a great supplement that helps with inflammation and the pain associated with that.

Natural Turmeric supplement

How it works is fascinating! Bromelain helps to break up tissue that is unwanted then your body can lay down the right kind of tissue to heal an injury. Turmeric helps to fight inflammation by dealing with the inflammatory pathways. This combination is the right one-two punch to take care of inflammatory type pain.

It is so versatile to use that things like managing arthritis pain will be reduced dramatically. The uses don’t stop there. Things like early injuries such as ankle sprain or rotator cuff injury will benefit this as well. It will clear the debri from the injury and start the correct healing process.

So when looking for a natural way to treat injuries or pain look no further than this turmeric, bromelain combination for the fix!

Give this post a like or share it if you found it helpful! As always if you have any questions about this or the product give me a shout!

Cheers!

Dr. K

Constantly Sick? Surefire way to nip it in the bud!

Being sick. Maybe you are imagining the thought of being sick or you are currently sick. Whatever the case we all get sick from time to time and for some it seems like they can never get over the sickness. While getting sick is in the dumps, getting out of the sickness can be easier.

Once we get sick our bodies do all they can to fight it off. Hence the fatigue and feeling of being unwell. Our bodies get drained literally of the resources in order to kick the bug out.

What is your go to when getting sick? It could be the Nyquil or Dayquil. It could be plain old tylenol. Whatever it is, it takes the edge off.

This type of meds will help with the pressure in the head or pain behind the eyes or just help you get to sleep so you’re not coughing all night but it doesn’t help to boost your system up.

What if I told you that there was a way to kick your immune system into gear to fight the bug off quicker? Would you do it? Well I have been experimenting (on myself of course) with things that can really put a boost to your immune system and get to feeling better.

That thing is…Garlic! For those of you that know me know that I talk about garlic a lot. And for good reason. I try to eat a raw (yes raw) clove of garlic a night. I don’t always accomplish this every night but at least I try, right?

Garlic has some potent properties to it that help with many different things and one of those is boosting immune function. I mean just smell the thing you know it has something in it that is special. Just one clove at night before bed when your sick and you will start to feel better in no time. Your body will love you for it. Maybe not your significant other but hey you will be healthier for it.

This might be controversial but I find it works for me. Give it a try!

Cheers!

Dr. K

Shoulder Pain! UGH! Ways to help with that nagging shoulder pain.

Shoulders. Gotta love em! We take our most mobile joint for granted until…you can’t lift your hand over your head. I’ve been there. Trust me not fun. But why does it get this way and how can we keep it from getting to that point? This little blog is here to help with that problem. So keep reading!

As I said the shoulder joint is the most mobile joint in our body. Go ahead try it. Move it around. See if you can do all that with you low back. No? I thought so. So with this being the most mobile joint we have to keep it moving in order to pick up that drink in front of you, or do your hair.

One of the ways it gets stuck is what is called micro trauma that adds up over time. We slightly damage the shoulder and voila it heals but not the way it should have. Healthy movement after something is damaged is key. It allows the joint and tissues to heal properly. The important thing being “healing properly”. If that doesn’t happen then it continues to not work the way it should.

So what to do? Great question. Healthy movement! Okay I won’t leave you hanging on that one. Healthy movement is doing movement that makes the joint feel better. Usually you can find a movement that makes the joint not feel like it is on fire. So doing repetitions like moving your shoulder back behind your back over and over 10 times will help reduce the pain.

Sometimes it needs a little bit more tender loving care and that is where seeing a chiropractor or someone who can really dig into the muscles to find the culprit is good. It not only helps correct what is wrong but monitoring it for improvements is awesome as well.

Another way to decrease the pain is taking a supplement that has bromelain or turmeric in it. This helps tremendously to get the right type of healing and clear away all the bad stuff. It really is great stuff!

So those are a couple ways to help with that nagging pain in the shoulder. If you have more questions about shoulder pain then let me know in the comments! Ask away! Really I love answering questions!

Cheers!

Dr. K

Chronic Pain revisited: Ways to prevent chronic pain from getting a hold on your life.

Back pain sucks. Let’s just admit it. Pain of any type doesn’t feel good. But what it does is point to something wrong. What I mean is that it tells us that something bad is happening! When you accidentally cut yourself chopping up onions (or whatever it is you are cutting up for dinner) your bodies signals stop doing that! Which is good because if you don’t stop you could potentially harm yourself very badly.

The point of this is to alert you that something is amiss. Chronic pain on the other hand is a difficult thing to deal with because it doesn’t necessarily mean that something is being damaged. It is the interpretation that gets mixed up. Your brain thinks that there is something being damaged which is not always the case. It is faulty wiring so to speak. What we have to do is get those faulty wiring patterns to reset so that there isn’t a message saying,” You’re being damaged!”

So how to do this? It is complicated but in my experience it is a combination of healthy thoughts as well as movement. Healthy movements throughout the day is key. Don’t stand still for long periods and don’t sit for long periods. Every one is different on what is a long time but movement is so good for you that it not only helps your body but your mind! This is good news because you can knock out two birds with one stone.

Simple ways to move is to dance. Yes I know sound funny, but dancing can be a fun way to get healthy movement in as well as make you feel better because you can dance to music! Almost everyone likes some form of music. Music is also a way to unwind your mind and help to reset the pain pathways.

All of this won’t happen overnight. It will take time. And getting checked by a chiropractor or manual therapist can help with stuck joints or muscles that aren’t allowing you to move properly. That is basically what a chiropractor helps with. Getting things unstuck. Well at least in my opinion.

Life is movement. Life is not stagnant. When it becomes stagnant it starts to stink. NO FUN! So do whatever moves you! If it is dancing then dance. If it is playing sports then play sports. Or work out with weights. Life happens so every once in a while get a tune up from a chiropractor to keep the body moving the way we are meant to!

Cheers!

Dr. K

On-Site Chiropractic's Role in Occupational Health

Over the past 10 months I have had the privilege to work with a manufacturing company to meet their needs in the healthcare realm. Chiropractic is a great service to provide a long with prevention of injuries and ergonomics into the workplace to better help the rising health care costs of musculoskeletal injuries. These types of injuries are most common in manufacturing, construction work as well as professions such as dental assistants and office workers. The growing need for companies to provide better health options is on the rise and I believe on-site chiropractic care can help with those needs.

It is not a one-size-fits-all type of healthcare as each company is in need of specific areas. But overall wellness can be achieved in workplaces and decreasing the amount of workplace injuries. One of the main goals of the program I am a part of is to prevent things from occurring and early treatment of those injuries. This means that the employees are getting to go home feeling better all while never leaving work.

I believe this a growing trend for companies who find themselves spending more and more on healthcare costs for their employees. The process for finding what the company is in need of can be long but like anything you want to measure you have to have a starting point. This gives the company something to go on as well as myself. Starting out by goal setting such as, “we want workplace injuries to decrease”, is a good place to start. It can be something like increasing the morale of the company as a whole. Whatever the goal it needs to be written out and how to attain it.

These types of programs can evolve as well. What was once a goal might change into something more specific of more broad so flexibility with this is key. Expertise in the field is a requirement as the needs of the company are diverse and require professional qualifications. A win-win-win strategy for all involved is at the heart of these programs and in the future this type of healthcare will be the model to go on.

Getting Adjusted Makes You Stronger

Bottom Line:

 

Did you know that a Chiropractic adjustment doesn’t only help reduce your pain levels? It also enables you to get stronger! It’s true. Researchers measured the electrical activity in the arms and legs before, during and after a Chiropractic adjustment. What did they find? An increase in cortical drive post Chiropractic adjustment. That’s science-speak for more strength.

 

Why it Matters:

 

Stronger is better. Better stamina, better balance, better coordination, better performance in every area of your life. What will you do with more strength?

 

- Your brain powers your movements and your strength through your nervous system.

- Adjustments have been shown to increase your cortical drive, which helps make your stronger.

- While one adjustment may not make you a champion powerlifter, this exciting new research is important for all of us who want to live an active lifestyle.

 

 

Next Steps:

 

Pay attention. That’s right, consider being more mindful of where having more strength can be more positive in your life.

 

 

 

Science Source:

Impact of Spinal Manipulation on Cortical Drive to Upper and Lower Limb Muscles. Brain Sciences. 2017. 7,2

 

Chronic Pain

Hello again.

This blog post is all about chronic pain and different treatment options that are safe.

Chronic pain is classified as any pain that lasts for longer than 6 weeks. A lot of people fall into this category as people live with pain a lot longer than 6 weeks. It has become a very larger problem because the current conventional model for treating pain has led to an even bigger problem of prescription medications being abused and becoming addicted.

The new guidelines for pain treatment consists of complementary treatments such as massage, acupuncture, chiropractic, physical therapy and some feedback techniques to help your brain readjust to the pain to better interpret the pain.

I find the natural alternatives to medications fascinating as well. Things such as turmeric, bromelain and even magnesium for managing pain. In my experience bromelain and turmeric have provided very useful to myself for aches and pains that I experience from time to time.

Back to the recommendations for chronic pain sufferers. Pain is a stimulus that our brains detect that gets our attention. It doesn’t necessarily mean that a tissue is being damaged. I find it interesting that when we focus on the pain more then it seems to intensify. Similar to fears. If one is scared of say a snake and to even think of a snake image would produce the same type of fear even though there is no snake, in reality near them.

So how is this connection tied into pain? Great question and it is still being investigated. A somewhat new term is what is called central sensitization that occurs in the spinal cord and brain. It is almost as if the brain and spinal cord store memory of pain and any little thing can trigger that memory to feel pain. It is in a state of high reactivity to a stimulus in the persons environment.

This could be an explanation to things such as fibromyalgia where the person’s nervous system is in such a high state that they hurt throughout the body and it moves and migrates to different spots.

I think a promising treatment is through coaching and cognitive behavioral therapy. It helps to reset the thoughts in your head to better form a clear interpretation of the pain. This therapy would help along with other treatment options such as acupuncture and electrical stimulation to help heal nerves.

One of the treatments that we do in office is micro current as well as other forms of electrical stimulation. This low current helps the cells respond and better heal. It is backed by science and is used to heal tendon, ligaments, muscle and skin injuries. This could be a potential in helping the body “turn down” the hyper reactivity of the nervous system along with coaching to find the thoughts behind the pain.

This is not a one-size-fits-all approach to chronic pain and it shouldn’t be. Every person is different with different backgrounds that need to be brought to the light in order to truly heal from chronic pain.

Chronic pain at the heart is a faulty reaction to a stimulus and that encompasses more than just mechanical pain such as an injury. It needs an integrative approach to better handle the person’s pain.

Moving forward in this type of approach I think more and more people can get well.

In good health,

Dr. Kauffman

What I do to heal tendons and ligaments

I use my hands a lot not only in my practice treating people but I like to garden which includes pulling a lot of weeds. Not a fun part of gardening but worth the sowing. So as you can imagine my hands develop a lot of tenderness and the tendons and ligaments can become inflamed and hurt. Quite a bit sometimes. So what are my go to remedies for this type of condition? Essential oils. I will talk about how I do that and what oils to use. You can use this on any part of your body where tendons and ligaments are at.

The anatomy of tendons and ligaments differ from muscle in that they don't contract much. they inhibit movement or help guide it. So they have to be pretty strong. If you have ever had tendinitis or have torn a ligament, like myself, then you know the pain and discomfort that it causes. So here are a few oils that I go to every day to help with my hands. 

Lemongrass

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Lemongrass is all things tendon and ligament. It has properties that help them heal and regenerate so that they are healthy. It smells similar to lemon but with a little different scent. It has an uplifting type of scent that is good to diffuse as well. I use 2 drops on my hands 4 times a day. It can turn your hands a little yellow from doing this but if you don't mind that then it is a wonderful way to heal your tendons. 

Marjoram

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Next on the list is marjoram. Marjoram is a part of the mint family usually grown in Europe but found elsewhere as well. This powerful plant and the essential oil packs a punch when it comes to muscle spasms and nerve pain. I often will mix 2 drops with 2 drops of lemongrass to combat two different conditions of muscle and ligament pain in my hands. Again you can use this anywhere in the body that you are experiencing pain. In can assist in calming nerves down so you don't experience pain. 

Helichrysum

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The last one on this list is helichrysum. This oil is from the family daisy and has many properties of healing. The oil itself is a little pricier but you won't want to be without this oil because of the many benefits. What I use it for is for regeneration of unhealthy or damaged nerves. This can work anywhere and especially well near the spine. It works great for healing the nerves that may have been damaged when the tendons and ligaments have become thickened in the hands or anywhere in the body. An example would be carpal tunnel syndrome. This tunnel becomes narrower due to thickening of the fascia in the wrist. This oil will help to heal the nerve damage. Apply 1 drop to area in need of nerve regeneration twice a day. 

So there you have it a short little list of what I do to keep my tendons and ligaments especially in my hands healthy and functioning the right way. Let me know if you have any questions I would be more than happy to discuss it! 

The Art of Mindfullness

I talk with a lot of people about the health of your mind. I truly believe that this can have the power to change your life, for the good! I don't know about you but I have days where I am just in a rut and I things just never go right. I often wonder if it was the circumstances that make it bad or was it my thinking?

That is up for interpretation. See we always have bad things happen to us. No one is immune to that. But what we do have control over is our mindset and how we react to those circumstances. I do believe, however, that some circumstances contribute to our thinking but by ruminating over those events causes even more problems with our minds and the outlook on our lives. The long list of bad things that occur would be enough to put anyone in an asylum.

But what makes the most fulfilled and joy filled person the way they are? Is it genetics? Is it a problem free life? I think both of those are wrong. The answer lies in the thoughts and core beliefs we believe about ourselves. See, what I believe in most strongly is a healthy mind and soul. When we create discord in our minds due to circumstances and our past then we get froze to move into a future that inspires freedom. We must slowly rewire those false beliefs that are at our core to be able to move ahead to be fulfilled. 

I know I have been in the cycle of false beliefs about myself a time or two. It is not a fun place to be. Why there is those false beliefs takes a little time to uncover but there is something that we can do to help become more aware of those thoughts. It is called mindfullness. It is a lot like meditation except you try to focus on where you are at in the present moment. 

So to start this out you want to be in a somewhat quiet place. Quiet works best so you can focus without distractions. Sit in a comfortable spot. Could be a chair or couch. Whatever works for you. Close your eyes or gaze at something that would not be distracting such as a single color wall. You want to focus on the rhythm of your breathing. The up and down of your breath. This will be a focus point if you get distracted. Next focus on how your body feels. Any pain that you sense or no pain. How the chair feels beneath you, or tight or sore muscles. Notice how it feels, not to bring attention to the pain but just to bring awareness to where you at in the moment. Continue to breath and bring the focus back to the breath. 

Focus on your breath for another 2 minutes and then you are done! This is a simple exercise to do to unwind the busyness of the mind when it comes to stress and anxiety. There are more in depth ways to do this but I suggest starting out slowly to develop a habit of it. Over time and with practice you will notice that you are calmer and more in the present instead of worrying about the past or future. 

I myself really try to focus on scripture in the Bible while doing this. Filling your mind with TRUTH and not the lies we all believe is essential to having a healthier mind and life! 

 

 

 

Endocannibinoid System and CBD oil: What you need to know

The buzz in the health world right now is all centered around CBD oil and the endocannabinoid system. This system has many global affects on the human body and brain. So much affect that to talk about it here would be overkill but what we are want to accomplish with this post is talk about what it is and how CBD oil can help with some problems you may be experiencing.

First I want to talk about some myths surrounding CBD oil. It is not a psychoactive meaning it won't make you "high" like THC will. It is made from the hemp plant that has a very low concentration of the chemical THC, so it will have no effect on your functioning mind.  It is regulated to contain very minute amounts of that compound so no psychoactive effects can be achieved. The hemp plant contains cannabidiol which is not THC. This CBD oil contains many health benefits of which we will discuss. 

The CBD oil interacts with receptors of the endocannabinoid system which is a part of every part of the body which regulates things such as mood all the way to fertility. It has a big effect on the central nervous system. This has a great potential in things such as pain as well as anxiety and stress. The reason why this is so important is that it can help with pain instead of dangerous opiates. We will discuss a few specific things that this is great for and then some things at the end regarding legality of the oil. 

Stress Response

CBD oil has many affects on the central nervous system including calming down the stress response and anxiety. Why is this important? It helps to balance out the nervous system. It binds to those receptors we talked about earlier and then will send signals to the brain and nervous system to lessen the effects of stress on the body. This means you will feel less stressed and more calm. It has been particularly fascinating on what they are finding with people who suffer from anxiety attacks and it how it can calm down those overwhelming feelings of being anxious.

Pain Modulation

Another interesting and far reaching affect that CBD oil has is on the pain response. When we feel pain the nervous system sends signals to the brain and then we perceive what we know as pain. When we treat the cause of the pain we should feel relief when that is corrected. However many live with chronic pain because our bodies get used to the pain and a little thing can set it off. It is known as desensitization. When this happens it means your nervous system and brain are on "high alert" to anything and it can think that something like a poke is going to damage your body. You thus feel even more pain. It gets complicated but that is a simple way of thinking about it. 

CBD oil can help calm the nervous system down and help protect it. By taking this along with chiropractic care we can get that over sensitive nervous system some time to rest and heal. This is very promising especially with the opiate crisis and the over utilization of harmful drugs. Those types of drugs are addicting and can cause more harm than good. CBD oil does not work with the dopamine system (another system in the brain that deals with rewards) so it is not habit forming. The oil works on the endocannibinoid system. 

Neuroprotective properties

The importance of protecting and feeding your brain is very important. Can't stress that enough. By eating the right foods grown the right way it helps tremendously keep your brain young. But there is another step in what could be with CBD oil. It has a protective effect on the nervous system and has been shown in studies to help regenerate nerves to an extent. This has a huge potential in many neurodegenerative diseases, but still needs more research to make it certain.

This has a very good potential to help with many different states of nervous system health. It does not have a psychoactive effect and it is not addictive which gives it more appeal when talking about using this instead of opioid pain medications. 

I think along with chiropractic care this could help to better regulate the nervous system and has the potential to help with pain especially with a "high alert" nervous system that so many seem to have. 

 

How Chiropractic helps with runners knee

First off I want to say that I didn't used to like running. It hurt my lungs. But what I have discovered is that it not only helps with all the lung function not to mention overall health but it is a form of stress relief. It is a wonderful way to get a lot of health benefits. It doesn't even have to be long or fast, just get out and run. Walk in the beginning if you have to. I am going to be writing a way to train up to running in the near future. 

Anyways runners can experience a lot of different injuries while running. A common one is what is called runners knee. When the knee joint cannot move and track the way it should when doing repetitive motion such as running then it can rub on the cartilage of the knee cap and create inflammation and pain. When this happens it is best to get things checked out so that you can prolong your running career. This can be a painful thing and might keep you from running altogether. The knee can swell up as well due to the irritation. You can experience popping when going up or down stairs as well as when kneeling down. 

The knee cap is supposed to run along a path that is on your femur (thigh bone). When it tracks off to the left or right then it creates problems. This can be due to tight muscles or a bad gait pattern. Whatever the case it needs to be evaluated in order to keep running pain free and not injuring the area. 

What chiropractic can do for the runner with runners knee is evaluate the gait as well as look at the joint itself. The knee should be stable so not much movement occurs so when it moves too much we look at the pelvic bones and the feet. When the feet or pelvic bones don't move correctly then movement has to come from somewhere else and it usually is the knee. 

Another way it can help is with treating the muscles around the joint. We do that by either doing trigger point therapy or instrument assisted soft tissue. What this does is free up tissue and alert the nervous system that there is an imbalance in the tone of the muscles. When one muscle is working harder then it pulls a certain way. This treatment helps to restore the correct tone in the muscle. 

Whether you like to run for fun and health or you are a competitive runner chiropractic can help keep you running at your best!