Migraine is not just a headache, it can be relentless; an intense pounding and throbbing pain that can steal your energy and ability to function.
Migraine is the most common neurological condition affecting people of all ages, social classes, races and culture. During Migraine Awareness Week 07th – 13th September 2014, the United Chiropractic Association is highlighting the benefits of Chiropractic care in both the prevention and treatment of migraine headache. Migraine is usually managed by medication but some patients do not tolerate acute and or prophylactic medicine, whilst other people may wish to avoid medication, Chiropractic is an alternative that should be considered.
A clinical trial (1) in Australia found that 75% of migraine sufferers experienced either ‘substantial’ or ‘noticeable’ improvement after a period of chiropractic treatment. One of the authors of the research, Dr Peter Tuchin said
“Around 22% (of patients) had substantial reduction which means that more than 60% of their symptoms reduced during the course of the treatment” “What makes this a really strong result is that this was a chronic group – the average length of time they’d had migraines was 18 years. To get a change of that sort of magnitude in a really chronic group was amazing”
Chiropractic treatment appears to affect the changes in the function of the blood or nervous system in specific areas of the brain and chemical balances within the body have been related to the cause of migraine attacks. The cervical spine – the neck was designed to have a C-shaped curve (known as lordosis). This design serves a specific purpose as the neck is responsible for bearing the considerable weight of the head. A subluxation, or misalignment in the neck can irritate the nerves that travel between the brain and the spine. Such a misalignment can interfere with the normal workings of the central nervous system and leave the body vulnerable to chemical imbalances in the brain.
Migraine triggers vary but can include periods of stress, foods (such as chocolate, caffeine, processed meats, cheese, nuts, wine and many more) poor sleep, medication and or even hormonal changes. (e.g. menstrual cycle). For most people there is not just one trigger but a combination of factors which individually can be tolerated but when they all occur together a threshold is passed and a migraine is triggered.
Chiropractic treatment can help with many contributory factors and after effects including relieve of restriction in movement of the neck, muscle tension in the neck, upper back and shoulders and helping correct any postural issues that may influence the occurrence of both migraine and tension headaches. Chiropractors can also offer advice on lifestyle issues, exercise, nutrition and managing stress.
For a half price assessment quote code MigraineRelief and call us on 0145237 2222
(1) J Headache Pain. 2011(Apr); 12(2):127-133 – Manual Therapies for Migraine: A Systematic Review
To coincide with National Bike Week 14th – 22nd June 2014, the United Chiropractic Association is encouraging people to incorporate cycling into their busy schedules. To be fit and healthy you need to be physically active, cycling is a low-impact aerobic exercise that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, from young children to older adults. It gives your heart, blood vessels and lungs a good work out; it is fun, cheap and good for the environment.
Did you know………..
Research by the car maker Citroen found that the average speed of a car in London during rush-hour (which is nearly all the time in London!) is just 7mph, and that motorists waste up to half of their commute time going nowhere, stuck in jams. The company commissioned some ‘gridlock’ research to promote a car designed for such conditions, a car that shuts off its engine when stuck in jams. Motorists may be grinding to a halt, but the average cyclist can travel at 12-15mph, twice the speed of a car in rush-hour London.
So, not only is cycling good for your health, but it can also cut your travelling time if you work in the City. Cycling can also improve your sleep, help reduce signs of ageing, boost motivation, reduce stress, and is great for weight management.
Whether you are a recreational cyclist, commuter or competitive cyclist, it is important that you are aware of common cycling injuries – how to avoid them and how chiropractic care can help.
Be aware of cycling posture! As with any form of exercise, proper posture will not only enhance your performance, but will also minimise the risk of injury:
Certain types of musculoskeletal injuries and imbalances are common among cyclists due to the position and posture adopted when riding a bike, as well as the repetitive use of certain muscles. Neck pain and back pain among cyclists is often attributed to poor body posture; such as: hyperextension of the neck and forward bending of the low back. This alteration in optimum body posture can cause certain muscles to become tight and irritated and spinal joint restriction and irritation to develop. If you experience tightness in your shoulders or neck, low back pain, or even numbness in your hands and fingers, rather than waiting till the pain or problem gets worse, visit your local UCA chiropractor. Many cycling injuries respond very well to Chiropractic adjustments, the aim of which is to encourage efficient joint motion, increase flexibility, reduce muscle tightness and improve alignment.
Chiropractic care is great because it is non-invasive, drug-free and effective.
Now is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy yourself, and riding a bike is the ideal activity with the warm weather approaching. It also gives you the opportunity to explore the area around you, which we often don’t appreciate in a car. You could also use this new-found activity to raise money for charity and meet new people. For more information and some great activities taking place during Bike Week 2014 visit www.bikeweek.org.uk
Texting and using mobile devices for long periods of time could lead to lower life expectancy, according to the United Chiropractic Association(UCA).
Forward-leaning posture increases the risk of an early death in elderly people and there are fears that younger people might be knocking time off their lives by using this posture when they text, go online, send emails or play games on phones and other mobile devices.
The UCA, which has around 600 members across the UK, says that poor posture is as big a health risk as obesity and is highlighting the dangers as part of its Spinal Awareness Week on 12-16 May.
The UCA points out that elderly people with even a small degree of hyperkyphosis have a 1.44 times greater risk of mortality than those without. This is a similar figure to increased risk of death presented by a body mass index greater than 30.Studies suggest a link between forward-leaning posture in older people and hyperkyphosis, which is associated with pulmonary disease and cardiovascular problems.
UCA executive member Estelle Zauner-Maughan, explained why using mobile devices could prove such a risk: “We tend to drop our heads forward which rounds the shoulders and this is what we term forward-leaning posture.
“People are now definitely at an increased risk of having problems through the top of their neck and back because of their posture, which is causing a change in the curve of the back. And there is an increased risk that they will develop this earlier on in life because of the length of time they’ve been sitting at computers or using mobile devices.”
Estelle added: “The problem is that when someone drops their head forward and rounds their shoulders, it becomes impossible for them to take a full breath in because of the restriction through the muscles and because the ribs can’t move properly. So the heart and lungs can’t function to their full effectiveness. Research is suggesting that the decrease in life expectancy comes from this.”
UCA chiropractor Edwina Waddell has noticed forward-leaning posture becoming more of an issue at her practice in Putney: “It’s something I notice every day and use of mobile devices is a factor,” said Edwina. “So many of us have structured our lives in a way that means we use computers, mobile phones, tablets and laptops at work and in our leisure time as well.
“Posture has been an overlooked factor in our health but research is helping us to raise awareness of it and people are now beginning to realise that good posture is more than about how it makes you look; it’s important for your health on a day to day basis and it can be important in terms of your life expectancy.
“This isn’t alarmist or scaremongering; it’s what more and more research is telling us. And the good news is that it doesn’t have to happen because it’s something we all have a degree of control over. We can change our habits. For example, restrict the amount of time you spend on mobile devices. And bring them up to your eye level, so that you’re not looking down.”
The UCA is urging people to have their posture checked by a registered chiropractor and to take steps to safeguard their posture and health: Edwina said: “A lot of people might not even realise anything is wrong with their posture. A check-up enables potential problems to be corrected before aches and pains begin and before risks are allowed to develop further.”
Watch this great video on Forward Leaning Head Posture
Reproduced with permission from the UCA
References for this story:
Journal of American geriatric society Hyperkyphotic Posture Predicts Mortality in Older Community- Kado, Huang, Barrett-Conner, Greensdale Hyperkyphosis Predicts Mortality Independent of Vertebral Osteoporosis inOlder Women- Kado et al J Am Geriat Soc 2004 Oct;52(10):1662-7.
Narrative Review: Hyperkyphosis in Older Persons- Kado et al. Ann Intern Med. 2007 Sep 4;147(5):330-8.
New England Journal of medicine, Overweight, Obesity, and Mortality in a Large Prospective Cohort of Persons 50 to 71 Years Old Kenneth F. Adams, Ph.D., Arthur Schatzkin, M.D., Tamara B. Harris, M.D., Victor Kipnis, Ph.D., Traci Mouw, M.P.H., Rachel Ballard-Barbash, M.D., Albert Hollenbeck, Ph.D., and Michael F. Leitzmann, M.D.
N Engl J Med 2006; 355:763-778August 24, 2006DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa055643
I first came to chiropractic at the age of 18, after 5 years of debilitating migraines and loss of vision in my left eye. I missed a week of my life every month for 5 years with the headache and severe pain. I could not stand the light or any noise at all. It was awful, and could strike at anytime. It was only getting worse, and I could no longer take the medicine that they were prescribing, too much to swallow, and very little use. A friend of the family suggested I see her chiropractor, and I have never looked back! After a few sessions and a lot of really good information, I was a new woman!
Over the last 20 years I can count on one hand the beginnings of a headache and perhaps one serious migraine after a big emotional time. Nothing in between! My overall health improved and my energy levels rocketed. I had been considering medicine at the time, as I wanted to study pediatrics, but after my first degree, I knew that chiropractic was for me, a natural and holistic approach to health and healing.
I first studied at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, Canada. This was my entry into biomechanical medicine. My absolute favorite class was our gross anatomy class, it was a real eye-opener to actually see all of our organs in place and how connected everything was, from the brain straight through to our toes. It was truly awesome. I studied chiropractic at the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic in Bournemouth. This was where I first spent time watching infants being adjusted, and then in my clinical year, adjusting them myself.
It was an amazing time, meeting amazing people from all over the world, some with very strong philosophies of natural health through chiropractic. During my second year, I contracted whooping cough. I was adjusted twice per day and took high dose vitamin C, and within the week it was gone! No medicines, just pure chiropractic, good nutrition, fluids and rest. That was an incredible experience. Since then, I have also experienced the benefit and the power of chiropractic after car accidents, a disc herniation, two fabulous pregnancies and two amazing home births. I have experienced just a small portion of what chiropractic can do for us, just by removing the interference in our nervous system and allowing our bodies to function and to heal the way we were meant to heal.
Some of my favourite moments since arriving in Cornwall, have been out on Stithians Lake or at Coverack windsurfing, amd out on the Helford gig rowing. When the sun is out and a lovely warm southwesterly is blowing, there is no place I would rather be! Life has changed a little since the arrival of Abby, and now Holly, but the sea still calls. As they grow, I hope they learn to love the great outdoors and the sea as much as I do.
Our little family usually attends the chiropractor for a check up at least every two weeks, rarely longer, especially as kids are so active and crazy!! They may not always need an adjustment every time, but I like knowing that they are in top form. If in between I find that they are overtired, grumpy and generally not their usual gorgeous selves, it usually means time for an adjustment, as something isnt quite right (we call it an “attitude adjustment”).
At home, our “medicine” cabinet is full of homeopathics, rescue remedy and cream, vitamins and herbal preparations. Ice in the freezer, hot water bottle in the cupboard. The best approach I use is to be calm, think about what is happening and how to approach it. Is wait and watch the best thing? Or if they have had a fall and cut, a good clean and patch job! I prefer to use the body’s natural healing ability, watch for any interference, adjust as needed and support with herbs or homeopathy as required. As a mother, I am into the whole food, loads of love and hugs, support and close family and friendships, and good healthy nervous systems idea!
Chiropractic has changed my life the life of my children for the better in every way. It is a process of empowering you to become the best you possible: physically, mentally and emotionally. Armed and able to make better decisions and choices in your own life, you are a better parent, co-worker, friend and partner…..community member…..and it goes on. I look forward to meeting you in person and learning how we may be of service to you and your family.
Lets talk about diet. I liked the 5 a day campaign, it was a good campaign. It got people thinking about how much raw fruit and vegetables they and their families were eating and put it in the front of their minds to choose wisely. The fact is that raw food has way more nutritional value than cooked food. It’s good for you. Whether it is good for you or not is not debated everyone agrees that it is. The debate that is raging is about how much is good for you.
I have friends who are on a 100% raw food diet, in fact in order to get the freshest food they often forage in the forests and fields for dandelions, mushrooms, nettles, wild garlic etc… I have friends who don’t eat any raw food. I certainly don’t advocate 100% raw food although the health benefits are remarkable; I think it is difficult in our current culture to do that.
The human mind and body are indeed amazing and we have an incredible ability to adapt to even the most toxic environments. We should draw our nutrition from the environment in which we evolved; to me this is common sense. So I do advocate at least 5 portions of fresh fruit and vegetables (in the whole form, preferably with the roots still attached J) a day and if you have to cook the vegetables then singe them or steam them to retain as much of the essential nutrients as possible. I also advocate eating less of the processed foods which are a cause of a great deal of biochemical stress, which in turn leads to increased levels of inflammation and acidity.
Just a note on the 5 a day campaign, it was great when it was the whole food but then as usually happens commercial interests tarnished the campaign. I leave it with you. Eat everything as close to what nature intended as possible. That is the advice I give to my patients and it works.
PS I call this the basics because I am asked a lot about supplements. Healthy people need real food not supplements. Get the basics right and supplements will be unnecessary.
Chiropractic Neurology refers to the basic premise that the brain and nervous system control and regulate all functions of the body. So a chiropractic neurologist relates all chiropractic related disease to a break down in communication between the brain and the body. When the body has a profound breakdown, whether through chronic postural strain or an accident, a body with a healthy brain and nervous system will respond to that breakdown correctly and efficiently. We are continually aware of areas of function that have gone awry and turned into dys-function. Healing is an important function that depends on a healthy brain and nervous system. So if function is the most important test of whether the body is healthy or not then if you have any dysfunction then your body is unhealthy.
Aren’t you curious about where your body’s functions may be falling short of optimal. If you have pain then you aren’t functioning optimally.
The beautiful thing about identifying areas of dysfunction is then being able to restore normal function. What is amazing to me is that the body always wants to get back to normal and it is most often us with our habits with regards to thinking, moving and eating that stop it from healing. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen it happen.
We love helping people, it’s our thing. We want people to Get Well, Stay Well and live better lives and we believe they can do that through chiropractic care. Of course what we chiropractors mostly deal with is pain and pain syndromes but what most of our patients find is that as their pain decreases their mood and ability to cope with stress improves too.
Dr Andy is going to Durban, South Africa to present a paper at the World Federation Of Chiropractors 2013 Conference (WFC). He will be away for 2 and half weeks and will be in discussion with Chiropractors from around the world. If you are wanting to book an appointment with him, he will be back after the 23rd April. Dr Moon will be taking care of his patients while he is away.
Here is a link to the WFC Website http://www.wfc.org/congress2013/ an organisation at the forefront of research into the effects and benefits of chiropractic care. Research which Dr Andy has always been very aware of using a lot of the techniques of the research method in his own practice and diagnostic approach.
“I will be presenting on research methodologies which are so sorely needed when approaching a patient with the intention of reaching a diagnosis.” Dr Andy Evans
Chiropractic is amazing. We identify and remove interference to normal function. That’s amazing. That means that a person who has for whatever reason lost normal function can with the help of Chiropractic regain normal function. Let me make it clearer PAIN = Abnormal Function – Chiropractic = return to normal function. At the Chiropractic Wellness Centre our chiropractors are experts in identifying where the function is abnormal. For many people it is like turning the lights back on. Our Chiropractors are qualified and registered as Doctors of Chiropractic (DC). So if you have Back Pain, Come and see us.