Headaches are a very common reason why people visit Chirofamily. There are often many causes of headaches and these may include the neck, joints and muscles. We often look at the triggers of headaches including diet, exercise, water consumption, sleeping posture, ergonomics (or work posture), jaw or TMJ problems, eye and vision problems, sinus issues and your stress levels. There can also be more sinister causes of headaches and these need to be excluded before your Chiropractor will proceed with Chiropractic care. Further testing may be required such as X-Rays, CT-Scans or MRI Scans. Care involves relieving the symptoms and addressing the causes of the headaches. In many cases results may be seen within weeks and long term relief is common.
Migraine is a specific type of headache and can be experienced from as little as once or twice a year, or as often as two or three times a week. The pain is severe, throbbing and usually on one side of the head. A migraine attack may last from four hours to three days.
A migraine headache has different symptoms to other types of headache. Some of the symptoms include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sensitivity to light
- Sensitivity to sound
- Affected vision, such as an aura
- Sensitivity to smell and touch
The medical community believes migraine attacks are almost certainly triggered by a combination of factors, such as:
- Diet – cheese, chocolate, citrus fruits, alcohol (especially red wine).
- Sleep – too little or too much.
- Menstrual cycle – migraine occurs two to three times more frequently in women than men.
- Physiochemical – excessive heat, light, noise or certain chemicals.
- Emotional – stress, excitement and fatigue.
- Relaxation (weekend migraines) – often triggered by a period of stress and overwork followed by relaxation.
- Neuromusculoskeletal causes – related to neck and nervous system function
Results are often achieved. Other supportive therapies include Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy, Naturopathy and Nutrition, Relaxation, Yoga and Meditation.
Neck pain is the second most common reason for a visit to a Chiropractor. With such a high percentage of the population being desk-bound throughout the day, our reliance on computers is increasing this type of pain. Neck pain can often be associated with shoulder pain or shoulder tension, headaches or migraines, and less commonly, referral of pain, pins and needles or numbness to the arm and hands. Some of the common causes of neck pain include joint or ligament problems, muscle spasm, disc bulges or disc protrusions and problems with posture. Your Chirofamily Chiropractor will also look for the non musculo-skeletal causes of neck pain and refer you to the most appropriate practitioner if required.
At Chirofamily we often find that in cases of arm pain; injuries to muscles, joints and ligaments in the neck are often overlooked. It is very common to have referred pain from these structures causing pain in the arm. One of the most common postural distortions is that of forward head and forward shoulders. This shift of posture causes muscular tension in the shoulders and the neck having to cope with the weight of the head. Muscular tension can cause pain to be referred into the arm causing a deep ache that often gets worse as the day goes on.
Chirofamily Chiropractors will examine you and conduct diagnostic tests to determine exactly what is causing your arm pain. Once the problem has been pinpointed, the appropriate chiropractic care will begin. Through care and with a few modifications to your lifestyle, our Chiropractors will often correct the cause of your pain.
Our Chiropractors effectively manage many of the problems that cause knee pain and although a condition such as osteoarthritis is not curable, the symptoms may be reduced in many cases and the progression of the problem may be helped thanks to our unique approach to care. Here are some examples: If knee pain is limiting your day-to-day or sporting activities, have you have been given painkillers and told to rest with no long-term improvement, or have you have been told you have arthritis and there is nothing that can be done?
With chiropractic we will commonly take the following approach:
1. Reduce joint inflammation and reduce pain with ultrasound and interdifferential therapy.
2. Normalise joint function with specific Chiropractic adjustments and mobilisation techniques to areas of restricted movement in the knee and surrounding joints, with the aim of increasing movement, improving the function and reducing pain. We may also use deep soft tissue massage, trigger-point therapy and cross-friction.
And finally with:
3. Rehabilitation exercise program. When appropriate we introduce exercises to improve strength, endurance and stability. We also work on improving your balance and your sense of joint position (proprioception). This approach may help you to return to normal and also prevent new injuries.
The shoulder is a complicated region because has the greatest range of motion of any joint and relies upon very fine control of all surrounding muscles. This delicate and precision control combined with a large range of motion tends to make us susceptible to several problems. Shoulder sprains, strains and dislocations are very common, and are often caused by sports activities that involve excessive overhead motion like swimming, tennis, throwing and weightlifting. The most common injuries are referred to as “rotator cuff” or “impingement” type injuries. Also, an ageing shoulder can be prone to osteoarthritis or bursitis, where inflammation and pain may also develop. Common symptoms of shoulder dysfunction or damage include “clicking” or “grinding” sensation with movement, restricted movement especially overhead, aching pain on the side and upper arm, or aching in the top and front of the shoulder. Care at Chirofamily usually involves soft tissue release, joint mobilisation and a strategic rehabilitation program to restore strength, balance and flexibility.
An accurate and professional diagnosis of shoulder injuries is required as it is not always easy to determine the cause of the problem. Pain felt in the shoulder could be referred pain or spinal damage felt through connecting nerves originating in the neck for example. For professional advice visit us at Chirofamily so we are able to examine all areas to determine the cause of your problem, and design a management program to get results.
Ankle sprains are the most common injuries to the ligaments of the ankle. The injury may occur in 3 degrees of severity. A first-degree injury is the most common. A second-degree injury involves progressive tearing of ligaments. A third-degree injury involves complete rupture of ligaments and may require extensive therapy or surgery to allow recovery over a period of several months. If ankle pain persists, there can be many other underlying causes such as innocuous fractures, arthritic conditions such as gout, nerve impingement syndromes or poor foot mechanics resulting from flat or pronated feet.
The most common cause of an ankle sprain is the result of a twisting movement. Participation in sports and careless activity may cause ankle sprains. Without proper rehabilitation, patients may experience chronic sprains and instability. A regular exercise program focusing on lower extremity strengthening is often beneficial. Strength and balance training of ankle and calf musculature is the foundation for prevention of future ankle injuries.
Early and precise management is essential. Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation (R.I.C.E) are always the first thing to do at home for a typical sprain. Swelling, pain or difficulty walking lasting beyond 3-5 days, loss of sensation, or broken skin barrier requires medical attention. An accurate and professional diagnosis of ankle injuries is required as it is not always easy to determine the cause of the problem. For professional advice visit us at Chirofamily so we can examine all areas to determine the cause of your problem, and design a management program to help you achieve results.
In addition to growing very fast, the rough and tumble of growing up puts a strain on kids spines and nervous systems. At Chirofamily we recommend that children receive regular check ups particularly if there has been any trauma or complaints of pain. Palpation of their growing spines can detect asymmetries very early so they can be treated ideally before they ever feel pain. Too many children suffer spinal pain, headaches and other joint problems that are put down to “growing pains.”
We care for children with “growing pains” at Chirofamily.
Following an accident the symptoms of whiplash may not present for weeks, or even months. To avoid long term suffering or scar tissue formation we recommend if you’ve been in an accident or suspect you may have whiplash, make an appointment to be assessed as soon as possible. Whiplash is commonly received by passengers in a motor vehicle that is struck from behind by another vehicle. Suddenly the head “jerks” back and forth (and is “whipped”) beyond its normal range of motion. This results in the muscles and ligaments supporting the spine and head to be overstretched or torn. Discs between spinal bones can bulge, tear or rupture. Vertebrae can be forced out of their normal position resulting in pain and nerve damage. Many people are surprised to receive a significant whiplash injury in a low speed, low impact accident. Research shows that increased vehicle “crushing” (as seen with higher-speed impacts) absorbs some of the shock of the impact and can lessen injury to the vehicle’s occupants. When “crushing” does not occur as happens at low speed, nearly all of the shock is transferred to the driver and passengers.
Whiplash symptoms may include headache, dizziness, blurred vision, pain in the shoulder, arms or hands, reduced ability to turn and bend, and even low back and leg problems. These symptoms may appear immediately following the accident or weeks after the injury. Pain can be a poor indicator with whiplash, as symptoms may not be present immediately following the accident.
At Chirofamily we offer comprehensive care for whiplash which may include Chiropractic adjustments, muscle therapy, rehabilitation exercises, stretches, ice and supplements.
When a spinal joint’s normal range of motion and it’s softness and fluid is reduced a healthy disc deteriorates. Healthy discs have a spongy, soft, flexible and moist characteristic almost like a wet sponge. An unhealthy disc is like a dry, brittle and cracked sponge. Mobility is reduced. Injury or trauma to the spine can cause discs to bulge, herniate, or even rupture. This can be painful and add pressure to nerves.
Our approach to disc problems at Chirofamily is to help restore better motion and position to the spinal joint. We work on creating a reduction in disc bulging and reduced inflammation. We can achieve good results with disc injuries, albeit that clients with disc injuries may often present in the first instance with a significant amount of distress. Care commonly involves stabilisation of acute inflammation first followed by muscle release and spinal adjustments. As the condition stabilises and improves rehabilitation, stretching and strengthening exercises are often included in the care protocol.
A mismatch of symptom location and the true source of pain is known as referred pain. The most common structures that refer pain in chiropractic patients are the muscles, ligaments and joints. The areas that can be affected by referred pain cover the whole body. Internal organs can also be the source of referred pain. For example: the feeling of pain in the left arm or shoulder, when the real cause is the heart, during a heart attack. Or pain in the right shoulder from the liver and gall bladder, or pain in the left shoulder and mid-back from the pancreas. Referred pain is thought to be the result of brain function and interpretation.
Chiropractic care includes the treatment of trigger points, which are a common source of referred pain. NET (neuro emotional technique) using kinesiology and visceral (organ) manipulation are also ways to return the body to optimal functioning. If you want to find out more about how chiropractic may help your referred pain or discuss your problem, you can contact us at Chirofamily. There will always be a Chiropractor available to talk to you about your symptoms.
Pelvic pain and dysfunction may occur during pregnancy. The pregnancy hormone ‘relaxin’ softens and ‘relaxes’ the ligaments of the body in order to allow the pelvis to open slightly during labour. This is to help the baby move more easily through the pelvic canal. The levels of the hormone relaxin peak at around 12 weeks of pregnancy and therefore it is not uncommon for symptoms of pelvic dysfunction to occur around this time. However, not all women suffer from pelvic pain during pregnancy, some only suffer post-natally, after giving birth. Some women will experience pelvic pain in their first pregnancy and not subsequently, while others will suffer from this distressing problem with each and every baby.
At Chirofamily we have a special interest in the treatment of pelvic dysfunction. Following a thorough case history and diagnosis our care may involve soft tissue work, ligament release, activator techniques, blocking techniques using wedges under the pelvis to relieve pressure, Webster’s technique, ice, heat, exercise advice and in some cases we may supply a sacroiliac belt also knows as a pelvic joint stability belt.
Many of our clients who receive chiropractic care for pelvic dysfunction, either before during or after the baby is born, experience a positive response, particularly if the cause lies in pelvic misalignment. Chiropractic care aims to address the root cause of the problem instead of addressing only the symptoms. It is however much better for a woman with mild pelvic dysfunction to contact us for treatment early in pregnancy or as soon as it presents to prevent the problem from becoming more severe later.
Posture is the window to the spine. We all notice poor posture when we see someone slouching or with a forward head posture. Slouching reduces lymphatic drainage in the neck and can cause strain on neck muscles. This posture is very common in people who sit at a desk or in a car all day. Another common posture problem is a forward tilt of the pelvis. This can lead to chronic lower back pain, muscle pain, sciatica, leg weakness, lower extremity circulation problems and much more. The abnormal spinal weight bearing associated with this type of posture can lead to premature spinal arthritis of the joints and discs.
A misaligned spine may in some cases indicate vertebral subluxation, which is a condition treated only by Chiropractors. Vertebral subluxation is a misalignment of the spinal vertebra effecting the spinal joints and discs causing changes in nerve function and irritating spinal muscles.
At Chirofamily we have a keen interest in assessing and providing care for posture and spinal problems. We look at what’s happening below the appearance of the posture to determine the specific causes. We then investigate lifestyle factors that are contributing.
Living in large cities in the modern world is becoming increasingly complex, and the demands on our time and attention are many. The dictionary definition for stress comes from the field of engineering, referring to physical force applied to a mechanical structure. This definition aptly describes how stress can affect human function. Today stress is commonly recognised as a cause of many illnesses. Stress can come from many sources including environmental such as air pollution, noise, weather, time pressure; body such as poor nutrition, exhaustion, physical injury, illness; emotions such as life experiences, upheaval or unexpected change, financial stress and grief.
At Chirofamily we offer care that may be able to assist you to become more resilient and to have a healthier response to stress.