Conditions that respond well to acupuncture & chiropractic treatment.
Advanced Chiropractic & Acupuncture
Spinal Pain Solutions
Chiropractic physicians care for patients with a wide range of injuries and disorders of the neuro -musculoskeletal system: nerves, muscles, ligaments, discs, and joints. Often low back, neck, joint pain are the result of: auto accidents, old injuries, sports, falls, or chronic poor posture. Patients can have acute and chronic conditions. These painful conditions often involve or impact nervous system and joints, which can cause referred pain and dysfunction distant to the region of injury. Many patients may have sciatica into leg and no low back pain. The benefits of chiropractic and acupuncture extend to general health issues, as well, since our body structure affects our overall function. Doctors of Chiropractic, DCs, also counsel patients on diet, nutrition, exercise, healthy habits, and occupational and lifestyle modification.
Stress comes in many forms, both mental and physical. Some of the worst mental stresses come from life events: deaths, divorce, communication, family, work, problems. Physical stress may result from a car accident or other trauma. It may be from an illness or surgery. It could be from long hours at the office or even from a long trip. Bernie Siegel, MD, stated: "It's often said that stress is one of the most destructive elements in people's daily lives."
Stress has a number of effects on the body. It has been shown to weaken the immune system, making us more susceptible to disease. It depletes our bodies of vitamins and minerals. It tenses our muscles, which results in muscle spasms and tension headaches. Energy is drained; blood pressure goes up.
• Arm or Leg Pain, Numbness or Tingling
• Neck Pain
• Shoulder Pain
• Causes of Low Back Pain
• Degenerative Disc Disease
• Failed Back Surgical Syndrome
• Herniated Discs
Arm or Leg Pain, Numbness or Tingling
Pain and/or numbness and tingling in the arms or legs may directly involve the spine. The nerves that exit the neck and travel down the arms are known as the brachial plexus. The nerves that exit the low back and travel down the legs are known as the lumbosacral plexus. These nerves exit through openings of the spinal column called an IVF (intervertebral foramina) if there is interference with theses nerves it may be the direct cause of the problem. This is usually true when the pain travels down the arm or leg. Any time you have a radiating pain and/or numbness and tingling down the arm or leg, you should be checked by your chiropractor immediately.Likely you have a communication problem with that area of the body. Static on the line so to speak.
Your neck is made up of seven vertebrae. Strong yet flexible your neck supports your head (approximately the weight of a bowling ball) and protects the spinal cord and cervical nerves. It should be well balanced with a slight forward curve (lordosis) which allows for proper range of motion. Your neck moves more than any other area of your spine. Nearly everyone at some time or other has had a pain in the neck. Prior untreated injuries such as whiplash, poor posture, poor sleeping habits, stress, abuse and neglect, wear and tear are just a few causes of your pain.
Stiffness or hypomobility may result from poor posture habits, untreated neck injury and stress. Headaches may develop from chronic stiffness. Left untreated it develops into degeneration of the joints of your neck (osteoarthritis) and tension headaches. Instability or hypermobility is most commonly caused by an injury such as whiplash. The band-like tissues that hold your vertebrae together - ligaments - can be stretched or torn causing instability and generating considerable pain. If this is not treated immediately many problems develop, but mainly the formation of scar tissue. Immobilization of the neck with the use of a cervical collar has been routine treatment for this type of injury in the past. We now know that unless there is major disruption involved such as fractures total immobilization is not recommended.
Degenerative Joint Disease or (DJD) is the degeneration of the cushion like structures between the vertebrae often diagnosed as osteoarthritis of the spine. This degeneration is also accompanied by bone spur formation. These changes disrupt the proper motion of the spine and may cause pressure on surrounding nerves and soft tissues. Degenerative Disc Disease may be caused from an old untreated back injury.
Nerve Root Problems or neuralgia, neuritis or radiculitis, result from direct irritation of the nerves as they exit from the spinal canal. They can be irritated and inflamed or stretched and pinched triggering shooting pains down your arms and into your hands especially when turning your neck. They may be associated with numbness, pins and needles, tingling, weakness, trigger points and referred pain. The cause may be facet joint problems or disc herniations or severe osteoarthritis. If it is not treated the pain will become excruciating and intolerable and allow further degenerative changes to take place.
Many shoulder problems directly involve the cervical spine. Here the nerves that exit the neck known as the brachial plexus may have interference. These nerves that go to the shoulder may be the cause of the problem. This is usually true when the pain goes beyond the shoulder and down the arm. Any time you have a radiating pain down the arm or leg, it should be checked out.
Common injuries to the neck and shoulder may involve weightlifting, or almost any throwing motion, especially in baseball or football. Many contact sports may result in an injury to this area. We see a lot of injuries due to falls off bikes and skateboards. Auto injuries are often the cause.
Problems of the shoulder may range from a mild ache to very severe injuries such as fractures or dislocation. Rotator cuff tears are common and MRI may be needed to confirm.
In our clinic a thorough case history and exam are done to determine the possible cause of the injury or problem. Then Xrays of the cervical spine and likely the shoulder are taken. Once we have all this information, we will recommend a course of treatment. If yours is not a chiropractic case you will be referred to the proper specialist.
Degenerative Disc Disease
Degenerative Disc Disease is the degeneration of the cushion like structures between the vertebrae. This degeneration is also accompanied by bone spur formation. These changes disrupt the proper motion of the spine and may cause pressure on surrounding nerves and soft tissues. Degenerative Disc Disease may be caused from an old untreated back injury.
Facet Syndrome is a problem occurring in the weight bearing structure of the spine. Facet Syndrome usually accompanies Degenerative Disc Disease. If the discs can't do all their work due to degeneration their co worker - the facet joint - has to pick up the extra load. The facets then enlarge abnormally, like callus on hands, due to contoinuous loading. The pain associated with Facet Syndrome is usually described on being in the hip joint and down the posterior thigh. The pain may also travel into the groin area. A combination of therapies may be necessary to bring maximum relief.
Failed Back Surgical Syndrome
At selected times, back surgery may be unavoidable. However, post -surgical pain may develop. There are several factors involved in post-surgical pain. The most common being the formation of scar tissue as a result of the surgical procedures. Mechanical stress may be transferred above or below the fused levels. Recurrent disc herniation may occur. Muscle weakness of the trunk and lower extremity muscular groups may develop. Flexibility of the spine through manipulation, exercise and therapy are useful in controlling the development of post-surgical back syndrome.
Herniated discs are most common in the lumbar spin, the part of your backbone between the bottom of your ribs and your hips. Discs are soft "cushions" between the bones of the spine. The drawing to the left shows the spine. The spine holds up your body. It also protects your spinal cord and nerves. The discs in the spine let you move your backbone. As you grow older, your discs become flatter and less cushiony. If a disc becomes too weak, the outer part may tear. The inside part of the disc pushes through the tear and presses on the nerves beside it. Herniated discs are most common in people in their 30s and 40s.
When part of a disc presses on a nerve, it can cause pain in both the back and the legs or the neck if disc is in cervical spine. The location of the pain depends on which disc is weak. How bad the pain is depends on how much of the disc is pressing on the nerve. In most people with a herniated disc in the low back, the pain spreads over the buttocks and goes down the back of one thigh and into the calf. Some people have pain in both legs. Some people's legs or feet feel numb or tingly.
The pain from a herniated disc is usually worse when you're active and gets better when you're resting. Coughing, sneezing, sitting, driving and bending forward may make the pain worse. The disc and possibly the nerve.
Many people suffer from headaches on a regular basis, and believe that headaches are just a normal part of life. Headaches or any pain for that matter, is your body's way of telling you something is wrong.
Today's attitude towards health has become so involved with treating symptoms that often the cause of the problem goes untreated or completely ignored. For example, a small cavity may be present in a tooth without having pain. As the cavity worsens, pain will develop. Most people will visit the dentist and have the tooth repaired. Very few people would continue to mask the pain or ignore the cavity, because they understand that the pain will only increase without attention from a professional. The same is true of certian headaches. People have been conditioned to use drugs to ease headache pain. Drugs cover up the symptoms and play a roll in management but do nothing to correct the cause. There are many different kinds and causes of headache. If patients are not improving with chiropractic or acupucture the doctors will likely refer to a neurologist. If you are visiting your doctor of chiropractic with upper-neck pain or headache, be very specific about your symptoms. This will help your doctor of chiropractic offer the safest and most effective treatment, even if it involves referral to another health care provider. If you have had recent memory loss, confusion, loss of consciousness, nose bleeds, or the " worst headache of your life, unbearable" ---- visit closest Emergency Room. This could be a vascular event.
Whiplash injuries are most commonly the result of being involved in an auto accident. However this type of injury may also occur in sports or even a slip & fall.
During a whiplash injury the head is violently forced backwards and then rapidly forwards. The small tendons, ligaments and muscles of the spine are stretched beyond their normal limits and may tear. The nerve roots and spinal cord may stretch causing severe irritation. Spinal joints become subluxated and their motion impaired.
Many symptoms may arise following a whiplash injury: headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, pain in the front and back of the neck, shoulder pain, pain in the arms and hands, low back pain, and the inability to turn and bend your spine. These symptoms may be instant or take hours, even days to appear.
Scoliosis is a lateral curvature of the spine. There are different types of scoliosis and the cause is still unknown. Scoliosis may produce back pain, however few symptoms may occur at the beginning stages and progressively worsen with advanced curvature.Some slight curve alteration typically does not cause chronic problems. However, if curves are of a certian degree, chest expansion for lung and heart functions may become compromised. Some of the cases will require surgery. Scoliosis is more prevalent in girls than boys. Children after the age of ten should be screened for this condition.
Spondylolithesis is a defect in the posterior aspect of the vertebra, causing the vertebra to slip forward on top of another, usually seen in the lowest segments of the spine. This may be caused, from falling backwards onto buttocks, sports injuries or may be present as a defect. Pain from this type of condition may vary with individuals, from severe to nonexistent.
Stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal or vertebral foramen ( openings on side for spinal nerves). Often with spondylolisthesis the spinal canal will become stenotic. There may be several reasons for this narrowing. It could be from forward slippage, disc lesions into canal,or bone spurs into canal. There may or may not be any symptoms. If the narrowing becomes severe enough, patients may develop leg and buttock pain, leg pain above the knees, and/or numbness in the above areas. It is common for patients with stenosis to develop pain in the legs and buttocks while walking. Often a patient will feel relief when bending forward or sit down. If your low back / leg pain improves when you are pushing grocey cart you may have central canal stenosis.
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