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Understanding Herniated Discs and MRI reports “In plain English”

Posted by on Oct 4, 2017 in Chiro Blog | 0 comments

Many times, patients come in to our offices after auto accidents or sports injuries with complaints of burning, numbness, tingling, or lingering pain that will just not go away.  When patients present with these types of complaints, it cues the doctor to problems involving the nerves, nerve roots and spinal cord.  One such problem that can demonstrate these symptoms is the presence of a herniated disc.

The definition of a herniated disc may come in a variety of words—most of which are in another language and no one understands; furthermore, not all terms mean herniated disc!  In layman’s terms a herniated disc can be similar to a jelly doughnut.  The inner portion of the disc (nucleus pulposus) would be represented by the jelly and the outer part of the disc (annulus fibrosis) would be the dough.  Just like a baker wants the jelly to stay on the inside, so do you! When a disc is herniated, it means that the nucleus pulpous (jelly) is outside of the doughnut.  This comes in a few flavors.

  1. Protrusion/Extrusion: when you read these words on an MRI report, it is a sub-type of herniated disc. It means that it is just pointing in a certain direction.
  2. Sequestered: This is another type of herniated disc where part of the disc has actually broken off and there is an unattached floating piece of disc material.

Some other terms that are related but do not signify herniated disc include:

  1. Bulge: a bulging disc is not a herniated disc—or at least not a recent one. When a radiologist’s report says, “bulging disc,” what they are saying is essentially that there was previously a herniated disc at that level a long time ago. The process occurs as such: a disc herniates; 6 months to a year later, bony spurs begin to form in order to stabilize the area; some of the disc will “resorb” or go back in.  The slightly healed herniated disc is now called a bulge.
  2. Annular tear: an annular tear is a tear in the outer part of the disc. There are two types, radial and circumferential. A circumferential tear goes with the grain of the annulus (dough of the doughnut) and may exist without the presence of a herniation; however, a radial tear goes against the grain of the annulus (dough of the doughnut) and will always be present with a herniation.

Many people worry and are afraid of immediate surgery.  While surgery may  help a herniated disc( at least in the short term), not all herniated discs are immediate surgical candidates; furthermore, there are other options for treatment of an acute herniated disc, including: decompression, traction, chiropractic adjustments, steroid injections, and nerve blocks.  We always suggest trying the least invasive treatment like Chiropractic first, and moving to more invasive treatments if they are not successful.  We like our patients to know that they can always have surgery later, but if they go straight to surgery there is no going back.  For any additional questions you may have about your specific condition we always offer a free consultation to discuss your different treatment options.

For an appointment call our Tempe office at 480-785-1355.

Reed Chiropractic 250 W. Baseline Rd. #107, Tempe, AZ 85283

The Effects of Sleep deprivation on your Health

Posted by on Sep 13, 2017 in Chiro Blog | 0 comments

SLEEP DEPRIVATION AND YOUR HEALTH

We all know that we don’t feel as good after a poor night of sleep but did you know that lack of sleep can also have serious consequences when it comes to your health? Lack of sleep has the same effect on your immune system as illness and physical stress as well as increasing your risk of numerous chronic ailments such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s, insulin resistance and obesity.

Adults need 8-9 hours of sleep per night while children need anywhere from 8-12 hours, with 10 hours being the average amount of sleep needed. Even losing one hour of sleep per night has been shown to increase inflammation, decrease immune function, and raise the risk of diabetes, cancer and stress.

DID YOU KNOW:

Sleep deprivation has the same effects of having a blood alcohol level of .10 percent which can impair judgment, physical movements and mental focus!

One of the worst things you can do is take sleep aides or sleeping pills. Research shows that the risk of certain cancers is 35% higher for people who use sleeping pills and they are nearly four times as likely to die from any cause than nonusers!

Sleep deprived mothers have double the risk of delivering more than six weeks early, resulting in premature birth, than mother’s who get plenty of sleep.

Your memory is affected by how much sleep you get! Lack of sleep has been linked to lower academic performance and memory recall.

Sleep deprivation increases your risk of obesity, stomach ulcers, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and cancer!

Lack of sleep leads to premature aging, both mentally and physically as well increases your risk o f depression and anxiety. 87% of depressed patients showed major improvements after resolving their insomnia, with symptoms disappearing after eight weeks

Lack of sleep is also linked to increased risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Turn your bedroom into a sleep haven.

Computers, cell phones and television have no place in the bedroom if you want to increase your sleep quality. Reduce any noisy interruptions such as removing your pet from the bedroom and the use of a white noise machine to reduce outdoor noises. Blackout curtains and turning off or covering all sources of light can greatly increase your body’s ability to get deep, restful sleep.

Keep a consistent schedule

Try going to bed and waking up at the same time each day. This will allow your body to become accustomed to a routine so it can regulate your circadian clock so you can fall asleep and stay asleep all night.

Get plenty of bright sunlight exposure in the morning and at noon

Exposure to bright light first thing in the morning signals your body that it’s time to wake up and stops production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. Outdoor sunlight is best so taking a walk outside in the morning or midday will help anchor your circadian clock.

Exercise Daily

Besides reducing your risk of cardiovascular disease and metabolic disorders, exercising will help your body rest and sleep more soundly. You should try to exercise at least three hours before bed or earlier.

Keep your room temperature low

Between 60 and 68 F is the ideal room temperature for sleeping. If your room is cooler or warmer, it can have a negative effect on your night’s sleep. Try to keep your room in this range to try and attain optimal core body temperature.

Eclipse your pain with Chiropractic Care

Posted by on Aug 21, 2017 in Chiro Blog | 0 comments

Here at Reed Chiropractic we has been serving patients in pain for over 18 years. If you would like to find out how to get stated on a individualized chiropractic care program we are here to help.  Our Tempe office is located just south of the US 60 and close to ASU.  Our Mesa office is located near Alta Mesa Country Club in NE Mesa.  Please call us at 480-785-1355 to set up your Free no obligation initial consultation and evaluation using the state of art Insight Subluxation station.

Anxiety And Depression: America’s New Epidemic

Posted by on Jul 19, 2017 in Chiro Blog | 0 comments

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, as many as 18 percent of Americans, over the age of 18, suffer from some kind of anxiety disorder. That is about 40 million people in the U.S. alone.  Fortunately, these disorders are being recognized and so safe, inexpensive treatments that don’t involve drugs have been developed.

Do any of the following things sound like you?

  • Looks calm on the surface but thoughts are constantly racing
  • Persistent negative thoughts
  • Restlessness
  • Physical symptoms such as muscle tension & headaches

If any of these things pertain to you,  you may be a sufferer of low to high functioning anxiety.  Chances are, you may have already been aware of this but identifying the cause or causes can be the first step in finding the correct treatment.

CAUSES OF ANXIETY

  • Microwaves- No, no the appliance you cook with. Microwaves or EMF (electromagnetic field) is from exposure to cell phones, cordless phones, Wi-Fi routers, baby monitors, smart meters, and cell phone towers.
  • Microflora imbalance in the gut
  • Lack of magnesium. Vitamin D and/or animal based Omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Using artificial sweeteners
  • Over consumption of sugar and junk food
  • Exposure to Toxic Mold
  • Improper breathing

TREATMENTS FOR ANXIETY

  • Limit your exposure of items with an EMF. Store your cell phone away from your person, try placing it in a bag or on your desk but try to keep from placing phones in your pockets.
  • Try taking a probiotic to balance your gut micorflora. Also increasing your consumption of yogurt and fermented foods such as kombucha tea, can help keep your gut in good health.
  • Try adding more magnesium, vitamin D  and Omega-3 rich foods to your diet. Foods high in magnesium; spinach, almonds, avocados, bananas, and black beans. Foods high in Vitamin D; Egg yolks, cheese, dairy fortified with vitamin D and fatty fish. Foods high in Omega-3; salmon, flax seed, spinach, walnuts
  • Limit your use of artificial sweeteners
  • Try choosing a healthy alternative to sugar and junk food.
  • Assess your toxic exposures. Do you feel better or worse at home or the office? Do your symptoms improve outdoors and is there a pattern of symptoms?
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Regular movement and try to exercise each day
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy either in person or an online resource
  • Spend more time in natural environments and outdoors
  • Try breathing exercises. One method to try is the Buteyko Method.  It can help minimize anxiety and help your body accumulate CO2.

BUTEYKO BREATHING EXERCISE

Take a small breath into your nose, a small breath out; hold your nose for five seconds in order to hold your breath, and then release to resume breathing.

Breathe normally for 10 seconds.

Repeat the sequence several more times: small breath in through your nose, small breath out; hold your breath for five seconds, then let go and breath normally for 10 seconds.

 

For more information on these topics and how Chiropractic Care can help with anxiety and depression call Reed Chiropractic for a free consultation.  We have two convenient east valley locations:

Tempe

250 W. Baseline Rd. #107

Tempe, AZ  85283

480-785-1355

 

Mesa

6025 E. Mc Kellips Rd. #102

Mesa AZ  85215

480-721-0099

 

Enhance your health with Cold and Breathing exercise

Posted by on Jun 8, 2017 in Chiro Blog | 0 comments

I just got done reading the book “What doesn’t Kill Us” by Scott Carney and I have started to see changes in my health in just a few weeks.  The book is written about how Scott Carney went to study and see if Wim Hoff, the man they call “The Ice Man” is for real. Wim Hof has been a legend in Poland for years, he has the ability to resit the cold and hold his breath for up to 6 minutes. In recent years he has made the claims that he can control his immune system consciously.   So this investigative reporter Scott Carney went to Poland to debunk this mans claims, but to his surprise he started to do some of the simple techniques that Wim Hof has been using and he too started to see changes in his own health and ability to resit the cold, increase his VO2 max, and even stop stress ulcers in his mouth.  When I first started to read the book I was more entertained at the stories and the like that this Wim Hof leads.  But then I started to see that a lot of what Mr. Hof is teaching and practicing makes a lot of sense.  It is very similar to our chiropractic philosophy.  In a nut shell he states that we need to stress our bodies in everyday like so that they have to adapt to things like the cold, changing of the seasons, altitudes and different climates.  In the absence of these types of stresses that the human species that had to deal with for all of civilization up until the last century, the body is bored and starts to attack itself to create stress.  In the modern day we live in climate controlled capsules that neither stress our nervous systems nor allow our bodies to utilize our mind body connection for our benefit.  We go from our 75 deg house to our temperature controlled car, to our temperature controlled office and then back home again.  In the winter we use heat and in the summer we use A/C.  If you think about this, we are the only species on earth that lives like this.  All others live out in the elements and just adapt for survival,  I he nor I think it is a coincidence that we are the only species that has chronic diseases and chronic degenerative conditions.   Now he nor I are saying that living in the elements is the only cause of this human phenomenon.   Ignoring our food, work lifestyles, over medication society, and sedentary lifestyles would be silly.  However, if we look at the concept of living our lives closer to nature has major impacts in our health.

So back to my journey in this book.  After reading the book and after all the stories and interviews of other people who has experimented with the techniques of Wim Hof, I too was inspired to try and see what it was all about.   I started 2 weeks ago with the breathing techniques and cold showers.  The breathing techniques consist of taking 30 deep quick breaths in and letting them out naturally.  On the last breath I let it out all the way and then hold my breath.  I hold my breath for as long as I can before I can’t take it any more have to breathe.  Wim Hof calls this the “wedge”.  This is where you begin to learn how to control your own autonomic nervous system.  I do this cycle 3 times, and with each cycle you can hold for longer. The fist few times I did this I could only get a 1 1/2 minutes or so, but with each day I could do more.  Within a week I was up to close to 2 1/2 minutes.   And now I routinely hold my breath for over 3 minutes.  This sounds crazy I know but it works, you super saturate your blood with oxygen and get rid of the carbon Dioxide and you just stop breathing.  It is really crazy how you don’t feel the need to breathe for a long time.  Then I finish the morning routine out with a cold shower (well somewhat of a cold shower the water in not that cold her in AZ when it is 110 out side).  That’s it, and then I start my day.  What I have noticed in the last two weeks is how alive I feel after the shower,  I feel refreshed and ready to go for the day.  I have noticed better focus and clarity, I have had less joint pains, and I too used to get stress mouth ulcers and bouts of anxiety.  Since I started the routine I have not had any mouth ulcers and my anxious feels from stress are all but gone.  Now I just need to step it up a bit,  I am going to start with some full body cryotherapy sessions to really give my body a shock.

I will let you know in a few weeks my progress…