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|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on January 15, 2015 at 6:25 PM||comments (0)|
People who suffer with leg pain due to issues with their back often experience more time out of work, higher levels of pain, and more extensive (and costly) medical care than those with back pain that doesn’t radiate down their lower limbs. While there are many options when it comes to treatment, such as medication and surgery, a group of researchers found that chiropractic can be extremely beneficial to back-related leg pain in the short-term—especially when paired with a home exercise program.
For purposes of this yearlong randomized trial, information regarding 192 male and female participants was collected. To qualify, each person had to be 21 years old or older (the mean age was roughly 57 years), have endured back-related leg pain for a minimum of one month, the severity of their pain was at least a three on a scale of 1 to 10, and they were on a prescription medication plan within the 30 days preceding the study.
The subjects were split into two equal groups: those that participated in spinal manipulation therapy in addition to home exercise and advice, and those that engaged in home exercise and advice alone. Demographic and clinical data were collected at the 12 week mark, when therapy sessions were complete, as well as 40 weeks post-treatment (52 weeks into the study), to determine what effect each level of treatment had on the subjects and what, if any, differences occurred between the effectiveness of these two different treatment methods.
After twelve weeks of treatment, individuals in the group receiving both spinal manipulation therapy and home exercise and advice reported improvement in their leg pain, with 37 percent experiencing a 75 percent reduction, compared with only 19 percent of the group that engaged in home exercise alone achieving the same level of relief. Additionally, only 56 percent of the dually treated group advised that they were still on medication at the end of the 12 weeks, as opposed to 63 percent for the home exercise group.
The response at the 52 week mark wasn’t quite as significant between the two groups, but there were still advantages reported by the group receiving both treatment remedies. Therefore, researchers concluded that, at the very least, chiropractic provides short-term relief for back-related leg pain making it a viable option to consider in these types of circumstances.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on January 15, 2015 at 6:25 PM||comments (10)|
Aging isn’t always easy as your risk of certain medical conditions increases and, often, your mobility decreases—both of which can lower your quality of life. Unfortunately, when you have a spinal condition, the effects can often be worse. However, research recently released in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics suggests that engaging in regular chiropractic care may offer some very specific to seniors with spine-related issues.
Researchers set out to discover the difference in outcome for seniors who engaged solely in medical treatments versus those who received chiropractic care over a year’s time. Their participants were 65+ year old Medicare recipients with at least one claim resulting in a diagnosis of a musculoskeletal disease, dislocation, sprain, or strain.
Each participant’s functional outcomes were measured according their ability to bathe, sit in or get up from a chair, dress, eat, and walk across a room. They were also asked to assess their level of difficulty with specific activities such as lifting, reaching, stooping, and walking.
Individuals were also assessed regarding their self-reported health status on a scale of one to five, as well as their level of satisfaction with the care that they received (with included happiness with both treatment and cost). Once all of this information was obtained, the study participants were differentiated between those who had used any chiropractic services during the course of the year and those who did not and opted strictly for medical care instead.
What researchers found is that the individuals who engaged in some form of chiropractic care had fewer functional limitations, less difficulty engaging in activities such as lifting and walking, and a lower number of doctor’s visits and hospitalizations. They concluded that chiropractic had a sort of “protective effect,” safeguarding them against physical deterioration.
Furthermore, patients of chiropractic were also more satisfied with their care during initial treatment as well as follow-up, the cost out-of-pocket, and the information provided to them about their condition. Therefore, this study suggests that engaging in chiropractic offers many benefits to seniors with spinal conditions, allowing them greater function and happiness as a result.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on January 15, 2015 at 6:25 PM||comments (0)|
Ankle injuries are among the most common injuries reported by sports athletes, ranking number one in 24 specific sports categories such as basketball, football, volleyball, and soccer. Additionally, over 40 percent of ankle inversion sprain injuries result in chronic ankle instability, which means that treating this condition effectively is imperative to helping protect athletes from suffering any further injury. Research published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics suggests that one of the best ways to accomplish this goal is to pair rehabilitation with chiropractic care.
In a study that took place at Durban University, 33 students between the ages of 18 and 45 were recruited based on their history of inversion sprains, their level of pain to the affected area, and whether or not they had suffered an ankle injury in the previous six weeks. Roughly, 54 percent of those that qualified were assigned to complete rehabilitation on their ankle via specific exercises, and the remainder engaged in both rehabilitative exercises and chiropractic, receiving high-velocity low-amplitude thrust-style manipulations by a trained professional.
Over the course of five weeks, both groups engaged in rehabilitation exercises every day. The group that received chiropractic care as well participated in 29 sessions of treatment, which were provided in 6-day increments with one day of rest in between. At the conclusion of the study, all subjects were assessed according to self-reported pain and joint palpation, which is when the area is manually assessed to determine range of motion and whether any restrictions exist.
Researchers found that the participants who engaged in both rehabilitation and chiropractic fared better with reduced pain and disability after just four weeks of treatment when compared to the subjects that received rehabilitation alone. So, if you have a recurrent ankle sprain and you’d like to treat it as quickly and effectively as possible, you might want to consider using both rehabilitation and chiropractic together as you’ll likely get better results.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on January 15, 2015 at 6:25 PM||comments (12)|
Back pain is very seldom limited to the back, especially if it goes untreated for too long. Many patients also report that they start to develop problems with their legs and hips over time.
In the study, researchers set out to see if there was a correlation between reported low back pain and future osteoarthritis related problems such as hip or knee trouble. The population-based cohort study indicated that there was a higher incidence of hip osteoarthritis in patients with previously reported low back pain. They did not find a significant correlation with low back pain and future osteoarthritis of the knee joints.
What does this mean for you if you suffer from low back pain? Though there could be a bigger risk for you to have hip troubles later in life if you suffer from low back pain now, this is not set in stone provided you take measures to care for your lower back as well as your overall bone and muscle health.
Primarily, you need to address whatever is causing your low back pain so it doesn’t lead to problems with your hip joints due to overcompensation and unusual wear and tear. Spinal adjustments can help realign the spine and diminish future degeneration of your lower back.
Remember that a strong body can better resist injury and degeneration. Cardio, strength training, balance exercises and stretching for flexibility can keep your body strong and at ideal body weight. Your chiropractor or other healthcare provider can also give you advice on healthy eating habits to ensure optimum nutrition.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on January 15, 2015 at 6:25 PM||comments (0)|
Numerous studies have found that antioxidants are important to achieving and maintaining maximum health. Put simply, they take their extra electron and use it to stop the chain reaction of free radicals (which create damage by stealing electrons from healthy cells), thereby neutralizing them and providing your immune system the strength it needs to fight off a variety of illnesses, ranging from a simple cold to cancer. Now, a new study suggests that chiropractic may play a key role in the process, potentially boosting the activity of the antioxidants designed to protect you.
For purposes of the study, researchers looked at 23 subjects ranging in age from 26 to 50 who suffered with chronic pain in their backs or necks. Each individual participant engaged in low-amplitude spinal manipulations provided by an experienced chiropractor twice a week for a period of five weeks to see what effect, if any, this type of treatment had on the subjects’ antioxidant activity.
Blood samples were taken both before and after the treatment sessions, noting the participant’s levels of three specific antioxidants: superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase, and glutathione peroxidase (GPx). All three of these are known to provide protection to your cells, defending them against free radicals most effectively “when an appropriate balance between the activities of these enzymes is maintained,” according to a paper previously published by Free Radical Biology & Medicine.
Researchers discovered that while the participant’s levels of activity of the antioxidant catalase didn’t change after just over a month of chiropractic treatment, the activity levels of both SOD and GPx did. This suggests that undergoing regular chiropractic care can boost the function of antioxidants in your body, thus providing you greater protection from major medical conditions and issues.
Additionally, another way to increase your antioxidant “punch” is to eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruit, and whole grains. Some great options to consider include sweet potatoes, asparagus, and broccoli as they are all high in carotenoids; berries, cantaloupe, and peppers which are loaded with vitamin C; and spinach, carrots, and nuts, which all contain a good amount of vitamin E.
Do these two things and you’ll help protect your body’s health—in a big way.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on December 9, 2014 at 9:20 PM||comments (0)|
Scientists have discovered a new risk factor for developing sciatic pain: your genes. Though scientists have suspected that genes play a role in sciatica, this study examines the impact of familial history on the risk of lumbar disc disease. The term lumbar disc disease refers to a set of spinal degenerative disorders that leads to sciatica characterized by low-back pain and radiating leg pain.
In the study, researchers analyzed records from the Utah Population Database, which includes data dating back to early settlers. Using familial genealogy of 1264 patients, researchers were able to track the presence of lumbar disc disease over several generations. They found that having a close relative quadrupled your risk for lumbar disc disease. But if you’re parents didn’t have lumbar disc disease, you’re not off the hook: even having a distant cousin can elevate your risk.
Genetics isn’t the only cause of sciatica; mechanical stress on the spine, occupational loading, aging, and even smoking has been linked to sciatica. Learning whether you have a genetic risk of lumbar disc disease can help you take additional steps to prevent or minimize sciatic nerve pain
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on December 9, 2014 at 9:20 PM||comments (10)|
The efficacy of drugs for sciatica treatment has been called into question in a recent literature review. Although there are consistent guidelines for prescribing medication for low-back pain, “this is not the case for sciatica.” To address this lack of clear guidelines, researchers analyzed the results of current literature on pharmaceutical treatment of sciatica.
After evaluating 23 studies, researchers concluded that there is no clear evidence demonstrating “favourable effects of NSAIDs, corticosteroids, antidepressants, or opioid analgesics in the immediate term [relief of pain] even compared with placebo.” That means that in many studies, drugs were no more effective than a placebo in relieving pain. Several drugs also did not significantly impact leg pain, one of the primary symptoms of sciatica. Though some NSAIDs and an anti-convulsant called gabapentin did reduce overall pain in the short term, the long-term effective were unclear.
For long-lasting relief of sciatica pain, chiropractic care combined exercise may ultimately prove more effective by addressing the root cause of sciatic pain instead of simply easing symptoms.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on December 9, 2014 at 9:15 PM||comments (10)|
The holiday season can be a stressful time of year. Extra stress can be particularly challenging for people with chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia and migraine, since stress can exacerbate pain. If you suffer from chronic, here are five tips to help you manage your stress and pain levels during the holidays:
1. Set your priorities
There’s a lot demanding your time and attention at this time of year. Don’t feel pressured to do it all. Take a minute to think about which holiday activities mean the most to you, and focus on those.
2. Take time for yourself
With busy holiday schedules, people often forget to take breaks. Consider scheduling time for yourself to do something relaxing and enjoyable. Especially if the holidays are emotionally difficult of you, it’s important to take care of yourself and seek support when needed.
In addition to easing stress, exercise has been shown to reduce the frequency and duration of migraines, as well as lessen the pain and disability of fibromyalgia, sciatica, and whiplash. Exercise can also speed the recovery time of many pain conditions and injuries. Your chiropractor can help you find safe, effective ways to help you keep your energy level up.
4. Be mindful of your nutrition:
The holidays are full of food and drinking temptations. While it’s okay to indulge yourself in moderation, over eating or eating from stress can make you feel worse in the end. Developing a healthy eating plan and getting adequate levels of vitamin C and Omega 3 fatty acids can help your body’s response to stress. Your chiropractor can advise you on healthy eating habits and nutrition.
5. Chiropractic Adjustments:
Finally, chiropractic itself can help you manage your pain and stress level. In fact, a research study in 2010 showed that chiropractic adjustments helped reduce levels of cortisol, a stress hormone known to cause inflammation and irritation.
This holiday season, remember you don’t need to suffer from pain and stress.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on December 9, 2014 at 9:15 PM||comments (0)|
Research suggests that smoking could increase your risk of back pain.
In one study of 95,000 nurses, women who smoked were three times more likely to develop psoriatic arthritis. This inflammatory arthritis causes pain in the low back and sacrum. Past smokers were 1.5 times more likely to develop psoriatic arthritis, and women who smoked for over 25 years had the highest risk of all. Researchers suggested that smokers may be more susceptible to psoriatic arthritis because smoking could induce oxidative stress that causes inflammation and harms the immune system.
In another study, smokers were more likely to have an early onset of inflammatory back pain. Compared to non-smokers, patients who smoked had greater disease activity, worse function, and a poorer quality of life. MRI scans revealed that smokers were also more likely to have structural lesions on their spines and sacroiliac joints. More severe symptoms forced smokers to miss work more often than nonsmokers. Researchers recommended that patients with inflammatory back pain be “strongly advised” to quite smoking.
Previous research has shown that smoking can increase your risk of developing sciatica and other chronic pain conditions. If you suffer from back pain, a doctor of chiropractic can ease your pain while supporting you in making healthy lifestyle choices to reduce pain and improve your overall health.
|Posted by A Family Chiropractor on December 9, 2014 at 9:10 PM||comments (9)|
If you suffer from chronic headaches, you may be tired of constantly reaching for medications every time the pain begins. Chiropractic care is a safe, powerful alternative with a proven ability to reduce head pain.Headaches are associated with a broad range of causes. Cervicogenic headaches are headaches caused by disorders in the neck. These headaches may affect up to 20% of patients with head pain. Cervicogenic headaches are frequently the result of injury or trauma and present similar symptoms of migraines and tension headaches. However, cervicogenic headaches can also restrict a patient’s range of motion making it particularly debilitating and harmful for a patient’s quality of life.
One study shows how chiropractic adjustments can substantially help patients suffering from cervicogenic headaches. The study compared the effects of chiropractic treatment in comparison to light massage for 80 patients with cervicogenic headaches. The patients who received chiropractic adjustments improved significantly more than patients who received light massages in a number of ways. The chiropractic group experienced a greater reduction in their number headaches and experienced less pain than the group who received light massage. The chiropractic patients also found headaches interfered less with their daily activities and were less disabled by their headaches than before.
Researchers concluded that chiropractic adjustments have a distinct clinical advantage over light massage in treating headaches in terms of number, severity, and disability. This research demonstrates how chiropractic care can create real, lasting benefits for people with chronic headaches.