Tuesday, February 23, 2016

How I learned to Clear a Path and Save My Back.

NUCCA Chiropractor, Dr. John John Kowalczyk has heard every possible situation as to how people can “throw” their backs out. Among the typical wear and tear, clients often come in after feeling pain from shoveling snow. Believe it or not, there are several ways you can avoid the back pain after shoveling. 

First, take some preventative care. Perhaps stretch your legs, back and arms a bit to avoid pulling any muscles in these areas. Additionally, dress warm enough to ensure the muscles are staying warm to aid in avoiding muscle injury.

Next, try and be aware of your form while shoveling. Start with feet firmly planted on the ground with controlled ankles. Bend your  knees and widen your elbows to lift with your limbs rather than your back. When you are lifting the snow refrain from sudden twists. Seems lots of twisting occurs during shoveling as you probably trying to throw the shovel on the side or even behind your body. Be sure to turn your whole body instead to avoid twisting the spine with the heavy weight of the snow on it. You can also avoid the weight of the snow by pushing the snow with the shovel as much as possible. Rather than picking it up with the shovel.  

While shoveling, be sure to take as many breaks as needed to dodge further strain and pain. Afterward, you still may have some soreness after shoveling from using muscles you have not used in a while and that is normal- but if it turns from soreness to pain, or if the soreness persists for more than two days it is probably time to see the chiropractor.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Why NUCCA Technique is Great for Kids

As a parent, you want to keep your children as healthy as possible, from infancy to adulthood. Have you ever considered chiropractic care to aid in your child’s overall health? Chiropractic for children has long been met with controversy; it can be frightening to think of your child undergoing the twisting and cracking typically associated with chiropractic treatments.

And that is where NUCCA comes in. Children - even infants - can experience the benefits of a perfectly aligned spine without painful manipulations. Misalignment of the spine can be responsible for many health issues in developing young bodies. Earaches and colic are among childhood ailments that will subside with gentle NUCCA treatments. A more comprehensive list can be found here.

So, what is NUCCA?
The National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association (NUCCA) technique is an ideal method of chiropractic practice to benefit infants and children. Wondering how it works? “This precision technique is based on the upper cervical spine and its influence on the central nervous system and brain stem function, which together are responsible for the function of your whole body.  This unique, specific form of chiropractic care uses a precise, painless procedure focused on correcting the Atlas Subluxation Complex, a condition caused by a small misalignment of the bone structure connecting the neck and head.” In fact, most patients say they don’t even feel the adjustment, but they do feel the results, often after only one visit.” Once the NUCCA technique aligns the spine and keeps it aligned, many, if not all, symptoms should subside.

In addition to the painless, twist and crack-free nature of this technique, NUCCA alignments are fast! We all know a quick doctor’s appointment is gold when it comes to dealing with infants and children. Remember, you can expect the first appointment to take approximately an hour but follow-up alignments take very little time. Many things happen during the initial appointment. The doctor will visually assess and measure the patient’s alignment. Due to the precise nature of this method, the first-time patient will undergo a small series of x-rays. The x-rays all happen very quickly, so your child will not be expected to sit still for a long period of time. Not at all. Results will be reviewed with patient and parent - which is entertaining to look at. Kids are fascinated with seeing pictures of their ‘insides’! Finally, the alignment itself takes between two and five minutes. All follow-up appointments take about ten minutes, start to finish. Even an active kid can handle that.  

To recap: the National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association technique is an ideal chiropractic technique for infants and children. This non-invasive and gentle method is the perfect opportunity for infants and children to reap the natural health benefits of a properly aligned spine.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Baby Got Back Pain

It can be said pregnancy is the most life changing experience in a woman’s life. Your body is providing you the unconditional love you didn’t know you were craving until baby arrives.  We can chat endlessly about how beautiful and natural the process of pregnancy is and all the fun you had feeling baby kick, choosing nursery decor, picking clothes and everything involved in preparing for your new addition.

But, let’s be real here. There are many unpleasant modifications happening to your body to accommodate baby. Although ultimately worth it,  some of these changes can be hard on your body, making your pregnancy experience uncomfortable. Many of these issues pile up and get swept under the rug, including back pain.

Most women are unaware they are able to undergo chiropractic services while pregnant with complete safety for mother and child. Some even have the idea that back pain is specific to them and nothing can be done about it until after baby has been delivered. Wrong. Fact is, a large majority of women experience back pain during pregnancy. If you didn’t have some sort of everyday wear and tear pain in your back  before your pregnancy, you can be sure that you will have it at some point during, and most likely afterward. Several things are going on in your body at this time.

Hormonal changes:
Most women probably remember the vivid back and joint pain during the first trimester of pregnancy (unfortunately lingering throughout the entire pregnancy for some). This is a result of the intense hormone changes the body is going through, preparing for more physical changes ahead. Ligaments are softening, causing the severe pain.

He ain’t heavy, he’s my baby:
Secondly, your baby puts a lot of weight on you. Your spine has to carry this extra weight without the luxury of time to help it become acclimated to the new weight. As your baby grows, it needs more room. Lots of pressure, muscle separations and shifting around is happening, and could cause pain in your lower back and pelvic region. If you’re lucky it stops there.

Compounding the problem:
The vast majority of us have changed our posture to alleviate the lower back pain. Although this seems to help, the relief is short-lived. Improper posture spreads the pain into your middle back and possibly higher. Additionally, your sleeping positions have changed, which is unintentionally changing your posture as well.

Love’s Labors Lost
Most women who are in alignment when going into labor have less than 3 hours of true labor. When the system is working properly, the nerves tell the proper muscles to fire at the proper time, making for an optimal delivery system; of course, the opposite is true for a woman whose system isn’t working properly. According to NUCCA Dr. John M. Kowalczyk, “I have seen over 100 pregnant women in my practice and 95% of them that went into labor on their own (i.e., not induced), progressed quickly through labor.” Wow.

You do not have to live with the intensity of these afflictions. Chiropractic care is increasingly becoming encouraged during pregnancy due to the safety of the practice. NUCCA alignments, in particular, are super gentle and highly effective. Your body is going through many uncomfortable changes; severe back pain does not have to be one of them. In fact, your NUCCA doctor can guide through a customized treatment program that will help alleviate pain during pregnancy, and in many cases, can even shorten labor and delivery time. NUCCA chiropractors are more than aware of the alterations your body is going through during pregnancy. You may not receive the typical chiropractic remedy you have previously, but there is a wealth of special techniques to benefit you and your baby.