The Young Athlete

In today’s age of health and fitness, more and more kids are involved in sporting activities. Although being part of a football, soccer, dance, or Little league team is an important rite of passage for many children, parents and their children could be overlooking the importance of proper nutrition and body-conditioning for preventing injuries on and off the playing field.

Young athletes today often think they are invincible. The following tips can help ensure your child does not miss a step when it comes to proper fitness, stretching, training, and rest that the body needs to engage in sporting activities.

Encourage your child to:

  • Wear the proper equipment. Certain contact sports, such as football and hockey, can be dangerous if the equipment is not properly fitted. Make sure all equipment, including helmets, pads, and shoes fit your child or adolescent.
  • Eat healthy meals. Make sure your young athlete is eating a well-balanced diet and does not skip meals. Avoid high fat foods, such as candy bars and fast food. At home, provide fruit rather than cookies and vegetables rather than potato chips.  Make sure meals are high in protein to help with muscle breakdown.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Certain sports, such as gymnastics, wrestling, and figure skating may require your athlete to follow strict dietary rules. Be sure your child does not feel pressured into being too thin and that he/she understands that proper nutrition and caloric intake is needed for optimal performance and endurance.
  • Drink water. Hydration is a key element to optimal fitness. Teenage athletes should drink at least eight 8-oz glasses of water a day.
  • Avoid sugar-loaded, caffeinated, and carbonated drinks. Sports drinks are a good source of replenishment for those kids engaged in long duration sports, such as track and field.Teenagers_playing_Sports
  • Follow a warm-up routine. Be sure your child or his/her coach includes a warm-up and stretching session before every practice, game, or meet.  I’m always amazed at how many athletes we treat that tell me they never warm up!  A slow jog, jumping rope, and/or lifting small weights reduces the risk of torn or ripped muscles. Flexibility is key when pushing to score that extra goal or make that critical play.
  • Take vitamins daily. A multivitamin and magnesium are good choices for the young athlete. Young athletes use their bodies in an incredible way and if nutrients aren’t properly replenished you can be prone to muscle injuries.
  • Avoid trendy supplements. Kids under the age of 18 should avoid the use of performance-enhancing supplements, such as creatine. Instead, they should ask their coach or trainer to include weekly weight training and body-conditioning sessions in their workout.
  • Get plenty of rest. Eight hours of sleep is ideal for the young athlete. Lack of sleep and rest can decrease performance. Sluggishness, irritability, and loss of interest could indicate that your child is fatigued.

Chiropractic Care Can Help

Doctors of chiropractic are trained and licensed to treat the entire neuromusculoskeletal system and can provide advice on sports training, nutrition, and injury prevention to young athletes.  When an athlete sustains an injury, a doctor of chiropractic can help speed recovery and instruct the young athlete on how to avoid a repeat injury.

Doctors of chiropractic are also certified to perform school spots physicals.  If you have questions about your young athlete and how to help them perform better or stay injury free, talk to one of the doctors at Minser Chiropractic today!

 

Why Your Child Should See a Chiropractor

Why do millions of parents bring their children to a chiropractor each 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 conditions like colds, sore throats, ear infections, colic, asthma, bed wetting, falls, stomach aches, and the other thousand things that children go through as they grow up.

It’s important to understand that chiropractic is not a treatment for disease. Its purpose is to reduce nerve system stress, a serious and often painless condition most children (and adults) experience quite frequently.kids-health

Nerve system stress interferes with the proper functioning of the nervous system which can weaken internal organs, reduce healing potential and set the stage for sickness.

Many spinal problems seen in adults began as early as birth. Even ‘natural’ birthing methods can stress an infant’s spine and developing nerve system.

The resulting irritation to the nerve system caused by spinal misalignment can be the cause of many newborn health complaints.

When a chiropractor frees the nervous system from spinal stress, the healing power of the body is unleashed, immune system works more efficiently, and your child’s body functions more effectively.

Chiropractic adjustments are modified to fir a child’s size, weight, and unique spinal condition. They are both gentle and specific to the child’s developing structure. In fact, the pressure a chiropractor uses to adjust an infant is a similar pressure to that when you test a tomato to see if it’s ripe.

Has your family has experienced the may benefits of chiropractic care?

Natural Ways to Help Kids with ADHD/ADD

Many kids suffer with some variation of an attention disorder. Parents look to medical professionals for help with their children, even chiropractors! Here are a few natural methods that can help kids with ADD/ADHD

Nutritional Support:

  • PhytoMulti Kids–Great multivitamin with added phytonutrients. It contains 16 essential vitamins and minerals and 9 fruit and vegetable extracts to promote overall health and well-being.  It includes Vitamin B6, and iron, which have been found to be beneficial for normal brain development and function, as well as zinc, which regulates the activity of neurotransmitters, fatty acids, and melatonin for behavior.
  • Essential Fatty Acids (Fish Oils)–Fatty acids play a key role in normal brain function, particularly in cognitive and behavioral function. Research has found that boys with lower level of fatty acids had more learning and behavioral problems compared to boys with normal fatty acid levels.
  • MindCare–An herbal formula designed specifically to help students with their academic performance. It can also help with occasional forgetfulness, attention deficit, aggressive behavior, and mental fatigue.
  • Vitamin D–This vitamin plays an important role in healthy neurological function and immune health. It should be taken as Vitamin D3, which is the active form of Vitamin D, to deliver the health benefits associated with Vitamin D.thumbs up kid
  • Probiotic–A daily probiotic, such as UltraFlora Children’s, provides friendly strains of bacteria that support both the immune system and the digestive system.
  • Attencia–A supplement formulated to promote attention, cognitive performance, and focus with a blend of coffee bean extract and guarana extract combined with theanine, zinc, and fatty acids.
  • Bach Rescue Remedy Pastilles–This is a combination of 5 of the Original Bach Flower Remedies taken to restore emotional balance and is helpful to use in times of stress, emotional upheaval, and trauma. It works by addressing emotional imbalances to help maintain emotional and physical well-being.

Dietary Restrictions: Research has shown that children who may be sensitive to certain foods and additives may have issues associated with ADD/ADHD.  It is recommended to remove artificial colors, preservatives, and flavors from the diet.  Corn, wheat, milk, and soy removed from the diet may also improve the symptoms of ADD/ADHD.

Chiropractic Care

  • Chiropractic looks to optimize the nervous system by correcting subluxations, which may be causing interference to the nerves. When a subluxation is corrected by a chiropractic adjustment, neurological function is improved, and learning and behavioral impairments seen in children with ADD/ADHD may also improve.

Craniosacral Therapy

  • Craniosacral therapy can have a positive effect on both brain and spinal cord function and looks to balance and release any restrictions of the movement of fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Stressful events, such as birth trauma, whiplash, or head and neck injuries can cause strain on the bones of the skull.  This is a gentle hands-on technique that helps promote movement of those fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord.

Tui Na Massage

  • It is a therapeutic form of massage based on Traditional Chinese Medicine, which has been around for over 2,000 years. It uses massage techniques such as gliding, kneading, pulling, rolling or tapping to help promote the balance of energy in the body.  A thirty minute session with a massage therapist can be beneficial for any age, from infancy to adults and can create a feeling of relaxation and well-being.

Here at Minser Chiropractic Clinic, we offer all of the above products and services that help kids with attention disorders. If you have any questions about these products or services please reach out to us!

Asthma and Chiropractic

Did you know between 10 and 20 million people in North America has asthma? Asthma cases have increased by more than 60% since the early 1980’s with asthma related deaths doubling to 5,000 a year.

Asthma is seen more often in children than adults and is a principle cause of kids missing school. Fortunately children with asthma respond very well to chiropractic care. Chiropractic adjustments are very safe for children of all ages!

There is a strong link between people who suffer from childhood asthma and nerve interference from subluxations. Subluxations are when bones of the spine put pressure on or irritate nerves causing abnormal nerve function.

Chiropractic adjustments may help reduce the frequency and severity of asthma attacks. The goal of chiropractic care is to reduce asthma sufferer’s need to rely on the many medications prescribed and to prevent and treat the symptoms of asthma.

These medications, or combinations of medications, can have many troublesome and even dangerous side effects, including making patients increasingly dependent on ever-larger doses.

Preventing asthma attacks is the key to living a normal life in spit of having asthma. In practical day-to-day quality of life terms, stopping asthma attacks before they start is better than taking medications to stop the attack and restore pre-attack normality.

The correction of vertebral subluxations could reduce or eliminate the need for medication and potentially easy the severity of the asthmatic condition.

If you have questions about asthma and chiropractic care, get in touch with one of our doctors!

Nighttime Snacking

It’s pretty common to crave a quick snack right before bedtime. Instead of grabbing ice cream or a bag of potato chips, choose nighttime snacks that are healthier while filling you up!

  • Popcorn– If you enjoy salty, crunchy popcornsnacks, popcorn is a great alternative to chips. You can eat it plain or add some flavor by sprinkling low-calorie seasonings like lemon-pepper, paprika, or garlic powder.
  • Fruit– Great for satisfying the sweet tooth. Dried fruit is also an option, but try not to overdo it. Dried fruits tend to have high sugar content.
  • Roasted Nuts– This is another option for snackers who prefer salty foods. You can add a few chocolate chips in the mix to help satisfy that sweet tooth.
  • Veggies and Hummus– Dip a few carrots or celery sticks in some creamy hummus for a snack that’s high in protein and fiber.
  • Cereal with Milk– Cereal isn’t only for breakfast! Choose a whole grain cereal and low fat milk for a filling snack. Try to stay away from the sugary cereals, instead sprinkle in some berries or chocolate chips on your own.
  • Soup– Broth based soups are easy to digest and the warmth can be soothing right before bed.

These are all great nighttime snacks for both adults and kids! Lead by example for children by making an effort to eat healthier for all meals and snacks.

Chiropractic and Scoliosis

What is scoliosis?

The human nervous system constantly works through reflexes and postural control to keep our spine in a straight line. Occasionally, a sideways curvature develops. If the curvature is larger than 10 degrees, it is classified as scoliosis. Curves less than 10 degrees are often postural changes.

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.picture1

What is the treatment for 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. 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. 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.

Chiropractic spinal manipulation, therapeutic exercise, and electrical muscle stimulation have also been advocated in the treatment of scoliosis. For patients with back pain associated with the scoliosis, chiropractic adjustments can help reduce the pain!

 

Pregnancy and Chiropractic Care

During pregnancy, a woman’s body will go through an enormous amount of changes, including structural and hormonal changes. One of these changes is to release a hormone called relaxin to help relax the ligaments and tendons that surround the joints.

As this is wonderful to allow the pelvis to be able to open and stretch during delivery, it can lead to more flexibility in the joints throughout the body and contribute to some discomfort in the neck, lower back and buttocks.

Also during pregnancy, a woman’s center of gravity shifts forward due to the increased size of the uterus placing mores tress on the joints of the lower back and pelvis.

This discomfort is often known as the “normal” aches and pains that come along with pregnancy. But who said that is just has to hurt until after you are done being pregnant?

Doctors of chiropractic are trained to address these complaints by looking at posture and how the joints are moving in relation to one another. Chiropractors are able to help correct these areas of misalignment and help pregnant women adjust to their ever changing body.

pregnant.jpgChiropractic adjustments are safe for pregnant women and can be especially helpful for those who are trying to avoid any medications. Doctors of chiropractic can also offer nutrition, ergonomic, and exercise advice to help a woman enjoy a healthy pregnancy.

Chiropractic care can also help after childbirth for both the mother and baby. In the weeks following labor and delivery, the ligaments that loosened during pregnancy begin to tighten. Ideally, joint problems brought on during pregnancy from should be treated before the ligaments return to their pre-pregnancy state to prevent further pain and discomfort.

Newborns can also benefit from chiropractic care. Childbirth can be very traumatic for the baby, so getting an adjustment afterwards can help put the spine back into alignment. A chiropractor adjusts infants very differently than adults. They use techniques that are very gentle. So gentle in fact, that the pressure they use to adjust an infant is similar to the pressure you use to test the ripeness of a tomato!

Being pregnant is a very exciting time in a woman’s life, be it her first pregnancy or her tenth! It’s also a major undertaking for her body. Getting regular spinal check-ups can make sure her spine is able to handle the necessary changes the body will be going through.