Chiropractic and Autism

April is Stress Awareness Month, IBS Awareness Month, Community Service Month and Women’s Health Month.   It is also Autism Awareness Month.  While stress, IBS, women’s health issues are all very important and topics we encounter every day, Autism pulls at my heart.  As any parent who has a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder well tell you, it is very challenging.   Autism Spectrum Disorder is a complex set of developmental disabilities.  Every child may experience autism very differently and that is what makes it a “spectrum” disorder.

It is considered a neurobehavioral disorder that includes issues with social interaction, language development and lack of communication skill.  Most have issues with sensitivity to sensory input.  It could be touch, taste hearing or smell.  These individuals may response differently to people or may want to harm themselves.  They may have a motion they like to do repetitively such as rocking or pacing.  They have learning and comprehension issues.  Autism is more common in boys than girls. One in 42 boys is diagnosed with autism according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.   Autism appears to present itself between the ages of 2-3 but can be as early as 18 months.

Possible signs of Autism:  avoids eye contact and wants to be alone, struggles with understanding other’s feelings, nonverbal or language delays, repeats words over and over, gets upset by change, has interests that are very restricted and almost obsessive, has often intense reactions to sound, lights, smell, taste, or textures.

As mentioned earlier, it is considers a neurobehavioral disorder.  The “neuro” part is what chiropractic strives to help in an autistic individual. Preliminary studies indicate that the chiropractic adjustment may influence sensorimotor integration.  We, of course, encourage further research in the influence chiropractic has on their developing nervous systems.  Given the ineffectiveness of a majority of pharmaceutical agents, parents need to know there is help in regards to autism.

Chiropractic looks to the body to identify areas of the nervous system that may not be functioning optimally.  Are the cranials, vertebra, pelvis, sacrum, atlas all moving properly?  Are altered biomechanics of the spine causing more stress on the nervous system than the brain can process?    Majority of autistic children have other complaints such as sleeping issues, GI complaints, allergies and lack of motor control.  These are all issues that should be address. Do they have lingering primitive reflexes?  Do they have posture issues? Do they have a head forward posturing?   Do they have flat feet?  Do they lack nutrition because they will only eat certain foods?  Are these food nutrient packed or processed?   These questions are just the tip of the iceberg when treating an Autistic child/teen or adult.  At Minser Chiropractic Clinic, we strive to make any child’s life easier and embrace each child’s individual needs and gifts.  Isn’t time your child lives up to his or her potential?  Yours for better health….naturally!

 

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Facet Syndrome

A common cause of back pain is a condition called facet syndrome.  First, let us understand what a facet is and what its job is to help your spine stay strong.

Facet joints are located on the back part of the spine and each vertebra has 2 sets, one on each side. A facet joint is the part of the vertebra that helps with movement and motion.  These joints are shaped differently in different parts of the spine and allow for one vertebra to move with the one above and below it.  Part of their job is to limit extension (bending backwards) and rotation (twisting). They provide stability of the spine.

These joints are controlled by the muscles of your spine and have a close relationship with these muscles.  Did you know your muscles are controlled by the nerves of the spine?  Your muscles, joints and nerves all have to work together to keep you healthy.

FacetAn injured facet joint can become inflamed and cause pain, stiffness and soreness.  These injuries can be from a direct injury such as a fall or micro–trauma.  Micro-trauma is usually a result of repetitive injuries or doing the same motion over and over many times.  A facet injury may make it difficult to sit at a computer or watch TV.  It may be painful to bend or lift.  You might experience stiffness in the morning when trying to get out of bed.

If one of the facet joints is not functioning properly, pain and dysfunction can be a result.  The pain level often depends on the severity of the injury or lack of motion to the facet joint.

A very successful treatment of facet syndrome is a chiropractic adjustment to help restore normal motion of the facet joint.  This gentle technique is the most effective way to help the injured joint heal.  In some cases an adjustment is necessary to help relieve any muscle irritation or spasm.  A home exercise program may be prescribed to help strengthen the surrounding muscles so they can support the facet joint and help prevent re-injury.

As always, Chiropractors advocate dealing with the underlying neurological, mechanical and muscular problems.  If you or a loved one are suffering with back pain, chiropractic care is waiting to help.

What Everyone Should Know about Massage

We asked our massage therapists to compile a list of frequently asked questions they get asked about massage therapy all the time!

You can also learn more about Massage Therapists!

  • What is a knot and Why do I have them?
    • A knot is your muscle fibers contraction to protect an underlying inflamed nerve. This inflamed nerve is caused by a subluxation (misalignment) of a joint. This joint could be in your neck, shoulder, back, hip, the list goes on and on.
  • Why does pressure from a massage release the knots?
    • Pressure from massage helps free up those contracted muscle fibers. A knot is similar to your “check engine” light in your car. The knot is signaling to your body that something deeper is going on in the body, aka a subluxation.
  • Why do I feel sluggish after a massage?
    • When you feel a bit sluggish or slow after a massage, that means you reached the deep relaxation point. This cues your body to into a deep relaxation state and when your body comes out of this state, you can feel a bit sluggish. During this time your body has lowered stress hormones and increased the feel good hormones.
  • How many sessions/massages do I need to “fix the problem”?
    • It depends. Various variables affect your body and how it can respond to massage treatment. How much water do you consume? Do you exercise? What does your posture look like at work? Are you recovering from an injury? What does your diet look like? The list of questions goes on and on.

Have any questions that aren’t on the list? Let us know!

Check out the different types of massages we offer!

Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Kids!

Why do millions of parents bring their children to Doctors of Chiropractic every year?  Is it only for when your child is hurting or for highly dramatic health conditions?

Not at all!  More parents are bringing their children to chiropractors for day-to-day health concerns such as colds, sore throats, ear infections, fevers, colic, asthma, tonsillitis, allergies, bed-wetting, infections, pains, falls, stomach-aches, and the hundred and one little and big things children go through as they grow up.

An increase in childhood diseases and illnesses is another reason that families are searching for natural healthcare options, such as chiropractic care, for their children.

Chiropractic care is an effective treatment for children’s health issues that are associated with the nervous and musculoskeletal systems.  Gentle chiropractic care helps to provide a drug-free treatment option to those young individuals to help resolve and prevent a wide range of health problems.too old or young

Recent research by the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) found spinal manipulative therapy safe and successful in treating children of all ages.  Chiropractic adjusting procedures are modified to fit a child’s size, weight, and unique spinal condition.  They are both gentle and specific to the child’s developing spinal structures.

Why chiropractic care?

Just look at a life under 18 years of age.  There are acute injuries and traumas that can cause spinal damage.  Are your children involved in sports?  Do these activities cause trauma or repetitive motions that may affect proper biomechanics and cause the body to function less than optimally?  Is birth trauma involved or perhaps a family history of a disease process you would like to prevent?

Parents surveyed by the ICPA reported behavioral improvement for kids who saw a chiropractor, as well as improved sleep and stronger immune systems.  Encouraging good lifelong health habits is one of chiropractic’s best benefits for kids.

Spinal manipulation for children as young as newborn babies is an alternative treatment for discomfort of colic and other digestive disorders as well.  And the list of benefits goes on and on…my children have been treated since minutes after their births and how fortunate they have been to receive the long lasting benefits of chiropractic care.

If it has been over 6 months since your child has been checked, now is the time to ensure their health! Give your chiropractor a call to get them adjusted today!

 

Back to the Basics!

October is National Chiropractic Health Month and the American Chiropractic Association has chosen “Back to Basics” as its theme this year.  So what exactly does that mean when we go “Back to Basics?”

Back pain is still one of the most disabling and common conditions a patient will visit their doctor, as well as one of the most common reasons for which doctors may prescribed pain medications, including prescription opioid pain killers.  This has become a major public health issue, including in our own state.  According to the Minnesota Opioid Task Force, there were 376 total opioid overdose deaths and 2,074 nonfatal hospital treated opioid overdoses in 2016.  The number of prescriptions written for opioids in 2016 was 3,536,939, which is a staggering number considering some of the risks associated with opioids, including addiction and physical dependence, sedation, dizziness, and nausea.

It is important to know that there are alternatives to pain medications like opioids to help alleviate back pain.  Chiropractic and other conservative treatments can help to treat back pain effectively and safely, without some of the risks that can occur from taking medications.  Chiropractors are trained specialists who focus on musculoskeletal conditions that may affect a person’s general health and well-being.  Not only can chiropractors treat common conditions such as headaches and low back pain, they can also treat conditions such as carpal tunnel, ankle sprains, disc disease, rib pain, and jaw/TMJ disorders. NCHM_Logo_Medium_400    A chiropractor will look at the area that is being affected by performing a thorough history and examination and recommend appropriate treatment based off their diagnosis.  Chiropractors will look to the source of the pain for treatment versus trying to mask the pain with medications.  Some of the treatments offered at Minser Chiropractic Clinic includes gentle chiropractic adjustments, acupuncture, massage therapy, ultrasound, electric stim, and rehabilitative exercises.  All of our doctors are also able to perform nutritional consultations and recommend dietary and supplementation counseling to achieve better health and allow for optimal functioning of the body.

If you or a loved one is suffering from back pain, talk with one of our doctors.  We would love to be able to focus on your back health “basics” with conservative care to keep your spine healthy for a lifetime!

 

What to do with Scoliosis?

Scoliosis comes from a Greek word that means crookedness. When you have scoliosis, your spine’s straight position begins to curve sideways. It can curve in one spot (C-shaped) or as a double curve (S-shaped). The most common area that scoliosis can develop is in the mid back and lower back.

In most cases, the vertebrae are also rotated. In more than 80% of cases, the cause of scoliotic curvatures is unknown; we call this condition idiopathic scoliosis. In other cases, trauma, neurological disease, tumors, and the like are responsible. Functional scoliosis is often caused by some postural problem, muscle spasm, or leg-length inequality, which can often be addressed. Structural scoliosis does not reduce with postural maneuvers. Either type can be idiopathic or have an underlying cause.

 

picture1What can you do about scoliosis?

There are generally 3 treatment options for scoliosis— careful observation, bracing, and surgery. Careful observation is the most common “treatment,” as most mild scolioses do not progress and cause few, if any, physical problems. This is where chiropractic care can come into play.

Chiropractic spinal manipulation, therapeutic exercise, and electrical muscle stimulation have been advocated in the treatment of scoliosis. Though it may not completely “fix” the scoliosis or correct it, chiropractic care and rehabilitation exercises can help prevent the curvature from getting worse. There are some cases where chiropractic has been able to reduce scoliosis, but no large studies have been conducted. For patients with back pain associated with scoliosis, chiropractic adjustments can help reduce the pain.

A second treatment option is bracing. Bracing is generally reserved for children who have not reached skeletal maturity (the time when the skeleton stops growing), and who have curves between 25 and 45 degrees. Again, chiropractic care can help prevent further development of the curvature and reduce any pain.

The third treatment option is surgery. Surgery is generally used in the few cases where the curves are greater than 45 degrees and progressive, and/or when the scoliosis may affect the function of the heart, lungs, or other vital organs.

If you know of someone suffering from scoliosis, tell them to try chiropractic!

 

Treating Low Back Pain

Lower back pain is one of the most common complaints a chiropractic clinic will treat.  84% of adults will experience lower back pain sometime in their life.  This pain can decrease your quality of life by limiting what activities you can do and what activities you will have to avoid all together.

There may be a loss of income, disability issues and pain that causes mental fatigue.  Low back pain is not limited to adults.  Teenagers and children frequently experience lower back pain due to overuse (i.e. heavy backpacks) and strains/sprains from injuries caused by playing, falls and sports.

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There are many causes of lower back pain.  The lower back is comprised of bones, nerves, muscles, fascia, ligaments and tendons as well as a strong blood supply.  These structures can be taxed by poor posture, overuse, pregnancy, weight, repetitive movements, injuries, prolonged sitting or standing in one place.

 

Chiropractic is a healthcare profession that is dedicated to non-surgical treatment of lower back pain.  Many studies have concluded that manual therapy (adjustments) are effective for the treatment of lower back pain, as well as lumbar herniated disc with radiculopathy (leg pain) and sacroiliac/pelvic pain among other conditions.

Chiropractic care is less expensive than medical care.  Chiropractic care is effective for patients with spinal degeneration.  Chiropractic provided better pain relief with chiropractic adjustments than with medical care and the list goes on. Compared to most treatment options, chiropractic care is among the best!

At Minser Chiropractic Clinic, we are dedicated to providing the best treatment options for your and your children’s health issues.  Let us help you overcome lower back pain and live a better, healthier life.  Yours for better health…..naturally!