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!
While we all enjoy the warmer weather and return of green, spring also brings an increase in pollen from blooming trees, weeds and grasses that many of us don’t look forward to. According to WebMD, “about 35 million Americans have hay fever”- also known as seasonal allergies or allergic rhinitis. Along with important preventative steps, chiropractic care at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can help relieve the discomfort of seasonal allergies.
Symptoms of Seasonal Allergies That Can Be Relieved with Chiropractic Care
- Stuffed or runny nose
- Tearing eyes
- Dark undereye circles
- Extended or intense sneezing
- Itchy throat and roof of mouth
- Coughing from postnasal drip
- Ear discomfort
- If you develop a fever or pain in your face or teeth, you may have a sinus infection.
You may wonder why some people suffer from hay fever while others are not affected? People who develop seasonal allergies often have a genetic predisposition, and those with asthma or eczema are also more prone to hay fever. When pollen grains enter the body of an allergic person, their immune system views the particles as harmful and overreacts by producing loads of histamine and other chemicals that cause inflammation of the sinuses, nasal passages and eyelids. The body is trying to protect itself by expelling, trapping or preventing the allergen from progressing further but this defense unfortunately leads to several uncomfortable side effects.
Prevention is the first step in treating seasonal allergies. Try to limit the time you spend outside when pollen counts are high, and remove allergen particles from your nose with a saline spray. The next most effective preventative approach is to keep your immune system in tip-top shape by eating well, exercising and receiving regular chiropractic care. Correcting spinal misalignments helps keep the nervous system functioning optimally to decrease the chance of it interpreting environmental information abnormally and starting an allergic reaction. Adjustments and other forms of chiropractic care can help relieve the discomfort of seasonal allergies, so make an appointment today at the Cafe of Life in Longmont and enjoy spring this year!
Now that Spring has officially arrived, you’ve probably been enjoying the warmer weather and increased your outdoor activities. Make sure you are in optimal health to fully enjoy the season by visiting your Longmont chiropractor, Dr. Jess, at the Cafe of Life!
5 Reasons to Visit Your Longmont Chiropractor this Spring
- To prepare for an athletic event– Training for races, be it a 5K, marathon or triathlon, often begins or intensifies in the spring. And for school-age athletes, baseball, soccer, lacrosse, track and tennis all start up this time of year. Regular chiropractic care helps prevent injuries and enhance performance for all of these sports!
- To assess your range of motion– To ensure that your body is not compensating and putting undue strain on particular muscles, joints or nerves, come in for a thorough evaluation of your range of movement and stability. This screening will show if there is a certain weak or unbalanced area that could become problematic.
- To recover faster from an injury– If you’ve been nursing an injury over the winter, our chiropractic care and massage services can help restore your strength, mobility and coordination.
- To boost your mood– Subluxations of the upper spine have been linked to depression but correcting these cervical misalignments has also been shown to elevate mood! Don’t let lingering Seasonal Affective Disorder prevent you from enjoying these spring days!
- To get ready for travel– When traveling we are often put in uncomfortable positions, such as on a plane or in a new bed, and knowing how to stretch properly to prevent or relieve this discomfort is knowledge that your Longmont chiropractor, Dr. Jess, would be happy to share with you!
Preventing an injury with regular chiropractic care is always worth your time, especially when you weigh how much time it takes to recover from an injury. Dr. Jess and the other professionals at the Cafe of Life in Longmont have the expertise to help you stay healthy and active this spring- make an appointment today!
Whether your headaches are intermittent or chronic, a dull throbbing or intense pain, they are always unwelcome and sometimes debilitating. The comprehensive chiropractic care offered at the Cafe of Life in Longmont can relieve headache pain and help prevent future occurrences. The American Chiropractic Association provides the following information for about chiropractic care for headache sufferers:
What causes headaches?
95% of headaches are tension, migraine or cluster types while 5% point to another underlying health problem. The majority of the 95% subset are caused by muscle tension in the neck due to spending hours in a fixed position, such as sitting at a desk. Other triggers include certain types of food, environmental factors (like noise or light) and other physiological conditions such as insomnia and changes in blood sugar.
How can you prevent a headache?
Stretch your whole body, but especially your head and neck, every 30 minutes or so when sitting for an extended period of time. Avoid clenching your teeth, which stresses the joints between your jaw and skull, and can lead to TMJ headaches. Drink at least 64 ounces of water everyday, as dehydration is a common reason for headaches. Headache pain can sometimes be alleviated with low-impact exercise, like walking.
How can chiropractic care help with headaches?
To provide instant relief, a chiropractor will perform gentle manipulations and adjustments to decrease joint irritation and realign the spine. A chiropractor will show you specific exercises, relaxation techniques and ergonomic advice you can use at home or work to help relieve irritation and tension in your neck and upper back. They also can offer nutritional advice to determine if a change in diet would decrease recurring headaches.
A 2011 study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that migraines improved after patients received a spinal manipulation and other forms of chiropractic care. If you’re tired of popping pills for recurring headaches, make an appointment with Dr. Jess at the Cafe of Life in Longmont to experience how chiropractic care can naturally and effectively relieve headache pain.