Depending on the severity and reason behind your neck or back pain, spinal traction is one of many effective chiropractic treatments that can alleviate your pain and restore your health! Specifically designed to create space between discs, traction is very beneficial for patients with compressed spines due to various degenerative conditions, and has negligible risk or side effects. If you are seeking a conservative way to relieve back pain, Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life in Longmont has years of experience administering spinal traction and other beneficial spinal decompression treatments.
Manual spinal traction is accomplished solely by the chiropractor using their hands to elongate sections of the spine by pushing and stretching surrounding muscles. This type of traction is most effective for cases of mild spinal compression. Mechanical spinal traction is more common and better suited for patients with moderate to severe compression. During mechanical traction treatment, patients lie on their back with a strap around their waist as an anchor from which the machine will slowly stretch their spine. This process is very gentle and alleviates pain caused by compressed discs by moving vertebrae back into correct alignment and spacing.
Conditions that Benefit from Chiropractic Spinal Traction
- Herniated or bulging disc
- Spinal stenosis, or narrowing of the spaces between discs
- Arthritis of the spine
- Spondylosis, or spinal degeneration
- Spondylosisthesis, or forward slip of a vertebra
- Degenerative disc disease
Benefits may be maximized and pain relief extended when spinal traction is combined with other forms of physical therapy and by wearing a brace after treatment. If you are suffering from neck or back pain, contact the Cafe of Life in Longmont to see if spinal traction would be a beneficial part of a custom treatment plan to restore your proper alignment and ideal health!
Our hips are central in most of our daily movements from simply walking upright to running, bearing weight to jumping. Since we depend on our hips for so much of our mobility, pain in this region can be debilitating but chiropractic care can help! According to a 2010 study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 60% of sciatica patients felt their pain was reduced enough to not need surgery after receiving chiropractic care.* If you are suffering from hip pain, Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life in Longmont will thoroughly diagnose the route of the problem and tailor a personal treatment plan of effective chiropractic care to restore your mobility and optimal health.
Causes of Hip Pain Relieved with Chiropractic Care
- Inflammation: There are two main areas where the hip joint can become inflamed: the socket, or acetabulum, and the sac outside the hip, bursitis. Either injury or illness can cause these areas to swell and fill with blood or fluid but bursitis is often from overuse as well.
- Osteoarthritis: The most common type of hip pain in older adults, osteoarthritis causes the hip joint to deteriorate and lose cartilage.
- Injury: Unfortunately, another frequent cause of severe hip pain for older adults is a fracture or dislocation due to poor balance and brittle bones. Significant bruising or a sprain from a fall can also result in intense hip pain even if the bone was not affected.
- Overuse: The cartilage, tendons, ligaments and muscles of our bodies can only withstand so much wear and tear before they start to break down. With how much our hips endure, it is no surprise that they become stressed at one point or another.
- Referred Pain: Although not the source itself, patients often describe pain in their hips stemming from another location such as the sciatic nerve in sciatica. Hip pain often accompanies a hernia or a problem with the sacroiliac joints that connect the sacrum to the iliac bones as well.
Chiropractic care to address hip pain could include adjustments, massage therapy, physical therapy exercises, stretching and advice on posture. All treatment plans will aim to relieve hip pain but will differ based on whether the underlying goal is to strengthen weak muscles, stop spasms, improve mobility or reduce inflammation. Come into the Cafe of Life in Longmont for Dr. Jess to assess your individual situation and develop a program of chiropractic care that will be most effective in relieving your hip pain.
Kids are heading back to school and starting back up into many different sports. Whether your children prefer soccer, football, cross country, tennis, martial arts, volleyball, cheer or gymnastics, they are all susceptible to injury while practicing their favorite sport. Dr. Jess with the Cafe of Life in Longmont is a youth sports chiropractor who has years of experience and expertise in treating young athlete’s injuries and helping prevent them.
According to the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, “Injuries to children’s spines are not unique to contact sports like football or martial arts. They are also seen in non-contact sports like gymnastics and competitive cheerleading.” It is important for youth sports chiropractors to be aware of the common injuries associated with each type of sport to properly diagnose and design the most effective treatment plan. For example, a head impact will effect the lower cervical portion of the spine, and a fall on the buttocks could impact the spine anywhere from T-9 to L2.
A study conducted by T.K. Videman, M.D., with the University of Helsinki, found that facet joints will start to degenerate in just 5-7 days when their normal range of movement is restricted. When joints were fixed in place for 5 weeks, 18 months of care was necessary for restoring optimal motion. This example illustrates why it is critical to have young athletes examined by a specialized chiropractor as soon as possible after an injury!
Regular chiropractic care for youth athletes will help minimize injuries leading to vertebral subluxations or other inury-prone joints specific to their sport of choice. As a highly-trained and experienced youth sports chiropractor, Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life in Longmont looks forward to working with your child to keep them in the game this season!
It’s almost time to send the kids back to school and with all the supplies requested by schools, you might be concerned about how heavy their backpacks will be! Preventing back pain and growth problems in their children is a high priority for parents, and one that Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life shares as a fellow parent, which is why she is passionate about providing excellent chiropractic care for children.
The American Chiropractic Association, or ACA, attributes overloaded backpacks as a contributing factor in young children’s back pain. According to studies conducted in France, “the longer a child wears a backpack, the longer it takes for a curvature or deformity of the spine to correct itself.” The ACA suggests regular chiropractic care for children and provides the following suggestions for preventing problems due to a heavy backpack.
- Buy a backpack with wide, padded straps and urge your child to wear both of them. Carrying it on one shoulder causes weight to be shifted to one side and increases the chances of neck and shoulder pain or spasms.
- Choose a backpack with adjustable shoulder straps so it can be worn close to the body. A loose backpack is more likely to cause spinal misalignment and low-back pain.
- Also look for a backpack with individualized compartments to aid in distributing weight and ensuring pointy objects are positioned away from their back.
- Position the backpack so it is not more than 4” below your child’s waist. If there is too much pressure on their shoulders, either from too heavy or too low of a load, then your child will lean forward to compensate and their posture will suffer.
- Most importantly, make sure their backpack weighs no more than 5-10% of your child’s body weight.
As you can see, almost every part of the muscular-skeletal system can be affected by backpacks from strained necks to tight shoulders, lower back pain, and sore hips and knees. With so many areas that could be injured from toting around a heavy backpack, regular chiropractic visits are so important to keep their spines aligned and support their optimal health! As a mom of school-age kids, Dr. Jess understands the parent’s perspective and places a high value on giving the best possible chiropractic care for children in her practice.
It is not hard to diagnose sciatica because the symptoms are very specific and pronounced. Sciatica is characterized by pain in one buttock and/or leg that is often described as a searing sharp or radiating pain with restricted mobility in the affected leg. Sciatica is actually a symptom of an underlying condition that the professional staff at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can help treat and thereby relieve sciatica pain with alternative therapies.
Alternative Treatments for Relieving Sciatica Pain
- Massage: There are many benefits of massage therapy that can also help with sciatica such as muscle relaxation, increased circulation and endorphin release. Neuromuscular massage therapy, or trigger point myotherapy, applies consistent pressure to a muscle spasm area in order to release stored lactic acid and restart proper blood flow.
- Acupuncture: Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and recognized by the National Institutes of Health as an effective method in decreasing back pain, including sciatica pain. Acupuncture uses extremely-thin needles inserted near the problem area to open blocked energy pathways and restore well-being.
- Chiropractic: Since the sciatic nerve runs along the spine, any misalignment or bulging disc can put pressure on it and cause shooting pain. Adjustments to put the spine back into proper alignment should stop any irritation to the nerve.
Did you know the sciatic nerve is the largest in the body? And it is comprised of nerve roots stemming from each level of the lower spinal column? Since this is such a massive and widespread nerve, it makes sense that it has the potential to cause debilitating pain- don’t let that happen to you! If you are experiencing any sciatica symptoms, such as intense leg pain, numbness or weakness, come to the expert chiropractor, massage therapist and acupuncturist at the Cafe of Life in Longmont for relief of sciatica pain.
Although many golfers might believe that better equipment makes the most difference in their game, research has shown that a person’s conditioning and fitness level matters more. The extreme motion of the golf swing can also lead to injury if one is not in ideal shape. If you are suffering from a golf injury, or just want to improve your performance, Dr. Jess, the chiropractor at the Cafe of Life in Longmont, offers specialized treatment that can help.
In an article titled ‘Chiropractic and Golf‘ published by the American Chiropractic Association in January of 2016, the author states, “An extreme amount of compressive force – up to 10 times a person’s body weight – is exerted on the spine during the golf swing. Every joint involved in the swing is taken through its maximum range. If the body is not properly prepared to handle these forces, injury will eventually result.” Common complaints for golfers are elbow hyperextension and wrist injuries, as well as back, neck, shoulder and hip pain.
Chiropractic care will greatly reduce the chance of injury from repetitive swings and can also help improve your golf game by working on a patient’s stability, flexibility and joint mobility. The Physician’s Golf Injury Desk Reference, written by Jeff Blanchard, DC and pro golfer, outlines 14 areas of the body that are used during the golf swing and therefore susceptible to injury. Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life in Longmont will evaluate patients who golf for flexibility and strength in potential problem areas and, if needed, develop a treatment plan involving in-office care as well as stabilizing and strengthening exercises to do at home. The goal is to maintain symmetrical posture in order to execute efficient motions that will not cause too much stress on joints during the golf swing.
Come into the Cafe of Life today to see how chiropractic care can help you golf pain-free, and maybe even improve your handicap!
Summer means travel but getting to your destination can often be a pain in the neck or backside! According to Dr. Bautch of the American Chiropractic Association Council on Occupational Health, “Even if you travel in the most comfortable car or opt to fly first class, certain pressures and forces from awkward positions can result in restricted blood flow.” If you follow the preventative tips below and still experience an ache or strain during travel, make a post-trip appointment with Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life for a restorative adjustment with the chiropractor!
Chiropractor Tips to Avoid Travel Aches this Summer
- Check bags that are heavier than 5-10% of your weight, as overhead lifting of anything more than this amount significantly increases your risk for injury.
- When putting luggage in the overhead bins, stand directly in front of the compartment and do not twist or turn your head during the lift.
- Use pillows or rolled blankets to maintain the natural curve of your spine when sitting. Put a support behind your waist and another between your neck and the headrest.
- Vary your position by putting your feet on your bag under the seat and by moving your knees up and down for awhile. Also take time to massage your legs and calves to avoid cramps.
- Position your seat to be as close to the wheel as is comfortable with your knees slightly higher than your hips.
- Improve hand and arm circulation by squeezing and releasing the steering wheel occasionally. Also vary where you hold the wheel to decrease muscle fatigue and tension.
- Prevent swelling by exercising your legs by holding your toes spread open for 10 seconds, then take turns tightening your calves, thighs and buttocks for 5 seconds each.
- Decrease fatigue and neck tension by rolling your shoulders forward and back. Also make sure to stop for frequent rest breaks and take brisk walks to improve circulation.
Make sure you are in tip-top shape before any upcoming travel by having the Cafe of Life’s chiropractor, Dr. Jess, correct any misalignments so your summer vacation will at least start off pain-free travel!
Did you know that ¼ of all our bones are located in our feet?!! They also have 33 joints and over 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments- that complex anatomy combined with carrying all of our weight make them susceptible to injury. If you are experiencing problems with your feet, chiropractic adjustments, ultrasound therapy and acupuncture at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can all help relieve foot pain.
According to WebMD, “Footwear plays a large role in the development of foot and toe problems such as bunions, calluses, corns, hammer claw and mallet toes.”
Shoe Tips to Alleviate Foot Pain
- Everyone’s feet swell slightly towards the end of the day, so this is the ideal time to try on shoes. If you use inserts, be sure to bring them along to test as well.
- Pay more attention to fit rather than size when shopping for shoes- be sure to stand and walk around to get a more realistic sense of how they’ll work in your daily life.
- Low heels put less pressure on the ball of the foot and toe joints but if you must wear high-heels, choose a shoe that is 2” high or less.
- A wide enough toe box is also important- you should be able to wiggle your toes and have a ½ inch of extra space to the tip.
- The sole should be flexible so that your toes can bend naturally, yet the heel counter needs to be more rigid so your toes don’t need to grip to prevent your foot from coming out.
- Finally, avoid materials that are not well-ventilated and make your feet sweat.
Unless you have limited sensation in your feet, due to diabetes or another condition, going barefoot as much as possible is also recommended. Adjustments, along with other non-invasive treatments, provided by the highly-skilled staff at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can relieve foot pain and prevent relapse by addressing the underlying condition. Don’t let foot pain make you sit this summer out- call us today for an appointment!
Most people recognize that eating well and exercising are essential components to good health, but many don’t realize that sleep plays just as important a role! Did you know that sleep-deprived people eat an average of 300 more calories each day? And the U.S. Department of Transportation reports that 1,550 deaths and 40,000 injuries are due to drowsiness of drivers! The chiropractic care you receive at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can help resolve sleep problems to restore your optimal health.
Possible Side Effects of Poor Sleep Helped with Chiropractic Care
- Diminished immune system
- Takes longer to heal
- Aggravation of chronic diseases
- Higher risk of developing cancer
- Hypertension & high blood pressure
- Higher blood sugar levels
- Aging process speeds up
- Trouble with memory
- Increased clumsiness
- Irritability & anxiety
- Weight gain
- Greater chance of a car accident
Dr. Jess can help address your sleep problems from physical, mental and chemical approaches. Specific adjustments to your upper neck will ensure that the nerve supply to your limbic system is not impeded. An optimally functioning limbic system is vital for managing stress, which is a common mental reason that impairs sleep. Dr. Jess will also discuss the best sleep environment and proper pillow positioning to ensure that you are supported physically for restorative sleep. Finally, she will suggest simple lifestyle changes in diet and exercise if necessary to eliminate any chemical issues that might be interfering with a good night’s sleep.
If you are having trouble sleeping, the multiple solutions offered with chiropractic care at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can help- come in today to sleep better tonight!
Both massage and chiropractic care offer drug-free, hands-on treatment for many issues from abrupt injuries to chronic pain so people may be confused about which to choose. Depending on your symptoms, the professionals at the Cafe of Life in Longmont may suggest massage, chiropractic care or, most often, a combination of both therapies for the most effective treatment.
The Case for Massage
If you are dealing with muscular or ligament problems, then massage therapy will be most beneficial. Some examples of issues that improve with massage are pulled muscles, spasms and areas of persistent tension. Massage therapists manipulate the top layers of muscle consisting of soft tissue, helping to relieve pain and speed up healing. Other proven benefits of receiving massages are a reduction in anxiety, strengthening of the immune system and increase of blood flow to stimulate recovery from injuries.
Some of the types of massage offered at the Cafe of Life in Longmont include Swedish, deep-tissue, trigger point and cranial sacral therapy.
The Case for Chiropractic Care
Unlike massage therapists, chiropractors are licensed to manipulate the nervous and musculoskeletal systems by adjusting a patient’s spine and joints although they may also utilize massage techniques. A spinal adjustment is the most common approach for treating back or neck pain, as the hard tissue of the skeletal system responds best to this method. Other problems that improve with chiropractic care are tendinitis, headaches, ear infections and insomnia.
The lead chiropractor, Dr. Jess, at the Cafe of Life will conduct a thorough assessment of the patient’s overall health and may order blood work or x-rays to confirm her diagnosis, and then may also prescribe medication or herbal remedies in addition to performing rehabilitative treatment.
Best to Get a Massage and Chiropractic Care Together
People may wonder if they should either go to a masseuse or chiropractor but most often, getting these two therapies in conjunction is best! Tense muscles will pull joints out of alignment so receiving a massage will aid in prolonging the beneficial effects of an adjustment. And the reverse is also true, realigning the spine and other joints will help soft tissue to heal and stay relaxed.
If you would like to learn more about how a balance between massage and chiropractic care can restore your optimal health quickly, come in to the Cafe of Life in Longmont!