What’s the difference between gentle chiropractic and traditional chiropractic? It’s all in the technique used. Overall, both approaches seek to relieve musculoskeletal pain and promote optimal health. However, they differ in their methods of achieving these goals. At Advanced Wellness Solutions, we provide patients with options tailored to their specific needs and preferences. There are […]
What’s the difference between gentle chiropractic and traditional chiropractic? It’s all in the technique used.
Overall, both approaches seek to relieve musculoskeletal pain and promote optimal health. However, they differ in their methods of achieving these goals. At Advanced Wellness Solutions, we provide patients with options tailored to their specific needs and preferences.
There are over 150 different techniques chiropractors use to treat musculoskeletal pain and injuries. These techniques generally fall into one of two categories:
- High Velocity Low Amplitude (HVLA) also known as “Traditional” chiropractic care
- Low Velocity Low Amplitude (LVLA) also known as “Gentle” chiropractic care
Technological Advancements in Chiropractic Care
Advancements in technology have revolutionized the field of chiropractic care. This allows practitioners to integrate a variety of tools and techniques into their treatment methods.
One significant development is the rise of gentle chiropractic, a modern approach that utilizes cutting-edge instruments and techniques to provide more precise adjustments.
Unlike traditional chiropractic, which primarily relies on manual manipulation, gentle chiropractic incorporates state-of-the-art devices designed to deliver precise and targeted adjustments. These tools ensure a gentler experience for patients while still achieving optimal results. Additionally, modern equipment allows for greater customization of treatments based on individual patient needs, making the entire process more tailored and effective.
By combining traditional hands-on techniques with technological advancements, gentle chiropractic offers a comprehensive approach to addressing pain and discomfort.
Overall, the integration of modern tools and devices has elevated the quality of care provided by chiropractors, offering patients a more comfortable and personalized treatment experience with improved outcomes.
Traditional Chiropractic Care
The High Velocity Low Amplitude (HVLA) or a traditional chiropractic adjustments rely on rapid movements. The goal of HVLA is to restore normal joint mobility and reduce pain by breaking up adhesions or restrictions in the joint.
This technique involves applying a quick, precise thrust to the affected joint at the end of its range of motion. Some patients enjoy the satisfying “pop” or “cracking” sound which is caused by the release of gas bubbles from within the joint fluid.
During an HVLA treatment, the practitioner will carefully assess the patient’s condition and determine the appropriate direction and force for the adjustment.
Despite its effectiveness, HVLA is not be suitable for every patient since it involves twisting, snapping and popping to manually manipulate the spine and other joints.
Patients considering HVLA should consult with a qualified healthcare professional to ensure it is safe and appropriate for their specific needs.
At Advanced Wellness Solutions, the treatment technique our chiropractic physicians choose depends upon what is best for the patient. While some are disappointed to learn they no longer “qualify” for a traditional HVLA chiropractic treatment, most are delighted with the results of gentle chiropractic care.
Gentle Chiropractic Care
Gentle chiropractic care techniques have many advantages over traditional HVLA chiropractic adjustments. There’s no twisting, snapping, or wrestling involved. Gentle chiropractic is a modern approach that utilizes cutting-edge instruments and techniques to provide more precise adjustments.
Gentle chiropractic care causes less post treatment soreness while providing excellent results.
Several of the more common gentle spinal mobilization methods include:
The Activator is a hand-held chiropractic tool, allowing the chiropractor to delivers a precise low-force impulse. Using this tool means there is no bending or twisting of the patient. One key advantage of this technique is the joint is never placed in a compromised position.
This technique requires a special table which is able to deliver a series of repetitive slow movements similar to a rocking motion. This applies gentle stretching or traction to the lower spine.
This gentle chiropractic technique requires a specialize table. The patient lays face down and the chiropractor presses down firmly. This causes a section of the drop table to fall which taking advantage of gravity to apply the adjustment.
Sacro-Occipital Technique (SOT)
This method involves placing wedges or blocks under the pelvis, allowing gravity – with some addition low force assistance by the chiropractor – to realign the pelvis.
Other gentle chiropractic treatments include heat therapy, cold therapy and muscle work.
At Advanced Wellness Solutions, the treatment technique our chiropractic physicians choose depends upon what is best for the patient.
There are many spinal stenosis treatment options you should consider before resorting to surgery. Most patients with spinal stenosis respond well to non-surgical treatments such as medication, physical therapy, and gentle chiropractic care.
Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal, typically caused by age, injury, or congenital disorder. The condition can cause difficulty with movement and can be debilitating. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery, spinal stenosis affects 8 to 11 percent of the population.
What is Spinal Stenosis?
Spinal stenosis is a condition where the spinal canal narrows, putting pressure on the spinal cord. Bone spurs can cause a narrowing of the spinal canal. Bone spurs are one cause of spinal stenosis. They are small bony growths that form from calcium deposits and can put pressure on the nerve roots as they exit the spine. Other causes of spinal stenosis include:
- Disc degeneration
- Spinal arthritis
- Herniated disc
What Causes Spinal Stenosis?
The most common cause of spinal stenosis is osteoarthritis. It usually develops slowly over time. Most people who develop symptoms of spinal stenosis are over 50 with women at a higher risk than men.
Besides osteoarthritis, other conditions or circumstances can cause spinal stenosis:
- Narrow spinal canal
- Injury to the spine
- Spinal tumor
- Certain bone diseases
- Past surgery of the spine
- Rheumatoid arthritis
How Do Doctors Diagnose Spinal Stenosis?
Spinal stenosis is often diagnosed using diagnostic imaging. Diagnostic imaging can determine the exact location, type and extent of the problem.
What are the Symptoms?
The most common symptoms are pain and weakness or numbness. Stenosis can affect any part of the spine and often occurs in the lower back and neck.
Other symptoms of spinal stenosis include:
- Radiating pain
- Numbness or tingling in the arms, hands, legs, or feet
- Weakness in the extremities
- Neck pain
- Clumsiness in the arms and hands
- Abnormal reflexes
What are Non-surgical Treatments?
The majority of patients (70%) are able to manage their symptoms through nonsurgical treatments. 1
Treatments for spinal stenosis pain vary depending on the type and location of the pain. Non-surgical treatments include medication, chiropractic care, and acupuncture.
- Pain medications are prescribed to relieve the pain and reduce inflammation. Unfortunately, these medication can cause side effects.
- Gentle Chiropractic care is recommended to help relieve muscular skeletal pain. Chiropractic care improves the movement of the spine. This helps to relieve strain on the discs and nerves in the back. Gentle chiropractic care avoids the twisting, snapping and torque of traditional chiropractic adjustments.
Surgery may be recommended if non-invasive methods don’t provide symptoms relief.
Spinal stenosis is a common condition that affects millions of Americans each year. The symptoms can vary from person to person. Treatment options for spinal stenosis vary depending on how severe symptoms are and what other health conditions are present.
Acupuncture for spinal stenosis is effective for fighting the pain associated with the condition. Clinical studies 4 have shown that this holistic therapy can help relieve the types of pain caused by the condition of spinal stenosis.
Gentle chiropractic care is preferable to traditional chiropractic care for spinal stenosis.
Treatment Options for Spinal Stenosis
The most common treatment is nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDS treat pain and inflammation.
In 2007, the American Heart Association issued a scientific statement warning of the long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) 5 which included this warning:
“Consumers are advised that all over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications, including NSAIDs, should be used in strict accordance with the label directions. If use of an OTC NSAID is needed for longer than ten days, a physician should be consulted.”
If non-surgical treatments can’t provide adequate pain relief, you may need surgery. There are many kinds of surgery for spinal stenosis. The health care professionals at Advanced Wellness Solutions will help get you the care you need if they aren’t able to relieve your pain.
Call to schedule your appointment today at 772-403-7640.
Acupuncture has been used to relieve pain for centuries and is used in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). It involves the insertion of needles into specific points on the body. The needles are inserted into the skin and manipulated. This promotes a healthy flow of energy, or “chi”, through the body. It is believed that this balance can help relieve pain and other symptoms.
Acupuncture for Pain Relief: How it Can Help You
Acupuncture facilitates the communication and activation of the nervous system, which releases specific chemicals within the body. These chemicals can help relieve pain and swelling. This is why acupuncture is used to treat headaches, back pain, arthritis, and joint pain.
Acupuncturists go through rigorous training and licensing. There are many different types of acupuncture. Each one is used to address a different health issue.
Acupuncturists are properly trained to stimulates points on your body that can relieve pain and promote healing.
What are the Benefits of Acupuncture for Pain Relief?
Acupuncture can effectively treat:
- back pain,
- neck pain,
- shoulder pain
- wrist pain.
The biggest benefit to acupuncture for pain relief is the safety of the procedure. The complication rate for acupuncture is low and the side effects are usually mild. Soreness and minor bleeding or bruising are the most common side effects.
In a German study1, only 0.003% of patients (13 out of over 4,441,000) experienced severe adverse events from acupuncture.
Acupuncture is also cost effective treatment the following conditions:2
- Allergic Rhinitis
- Low back pain
- Ambulatory Anesthesia
- Chronic Pain
- Neck Pain (plus usual medical care)
- Dysmenorrhea (painful periods)
- Post-operative nausea and vomiting
How does acupuncture compare to other treatments for pain?
Acupuncture pales in comparison to the risks associated with taking pain medication. Addiction is a very real risk with prescription pain killers.
According to Hopkins Medicine3,
It takes a couple of weeks to become physically dependent on an opioid, but that varies by individual. If you take an opioid for a day or two, it should not be a problem and, generally, you will not become addicted. However, some studies show even the first dose of an opioid can have physiological effects.
One study found up to 25% of of patients develop a life-long addiction.4 In 2016, there were 63,632 drug overdose deaths in the United States, a 21.4% increase from 2015.5 Two thirds of these deaths involved an opioid.6
A recent study concluded that any dose of NSAIDs for any duration increased the risk of heart attack.8 This means acupuncture is even safer than over the counter pain relievers (NSAIDs).
Acupuncture has treated pain and other chronic symptoms for centuries. It can supplement or replace other treatments, depending on the individual.
What is the evidence for acupuncture?
There have been over 8,000 intensive scientific clinical trials of acupuncture over the past 50 years.9
In 2017, the American College of Physicians began recommending acupuncture for both chronic and acute low back pain.10
The Acupuncture Evidence Project 11 found evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture for 117 conditions, with stronger evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness for some conditions than others. Conditions with strongest evidence supporting the effectiveness of acupuncture include:
- Allergic rhinitis (perennial & seasonal)
- Knee osteoarthritis
- Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (with anti-emetics)
- Migraine prophylaxis
- Chronic low back pain
- Postoperative nausea & vomiting
- Headache (tension-type and chronic)
- Postoperative pain
Why You Should Consider Using Acupuncture
Acupuncture has been treating pain for thousands of years. There are many reasons why acupuncture may be a good treatment option for you. Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment for pain. It’s a safe, cost effective treatment option for many conditions.
Call Advanced Wellness Solutions at 855-509-5400 to schedule your appointment.
Gentle chiropractic care techniques have many advantages over traditional chiropractic care. There are over 150 different chiropractic techniques 1 chiropractors can use to treat pain and alleviate other symptoms. Gentle chiropractic uses techniques that don’t require you to be twisted into a pretzel. There’s no twisting, snapping, or wrestling involved. Gentle chiropractic is more comfortable and causes less soreness while providing excellent results.
Gentle chiropractic provides maximum results in minimal visits.
If you think that getting adjusted means being twisted like a pretzel and snapped, cracked and popped, good news! Advanced Wellness Solutions offers gentle chiropractic care. We know that traditional chiropractic techniques are not for everyone. If you’re suffering from arthritis pain, don’t like feeling sore after an adjustment or if you’re apprehensive about traditional chiropractic care, consider trying gentle chiropractic.
Gentle Chiropractic Care Techniques
Many gentle chiropractic techniques are performed within the passive range of joint motion. This unique form of chiropractic care can provide maximum benefit with minimal visits. Some of the gentle chiropractic techniques offered at Advanced Wellness Solutions are Activator, Flexion-distraction, and SOT.
An Activator is hand-held adjusting instrument that delivers a high velocity, low amplitude precise impulse. This precision chiropractic adjustment is safe, effective and gentle for the patient.
Flexion-Distraction or Cox Technique:
Flexion distraction uses gentle, rhythmic movements to relieve pain and improve function in the lower back, neck and legs. Patients lie upon a specially designed, adjustable treatment table. The chiropractor uses his or her hands to apply pressure and stretch the spine. The patient feels a gentle stretching motion which many find relaxing.
The SOT technique, or Sacro-Occipital Technique, is a manual manipulation that uses special blocks in a precise configuration. This helps to restore proper alignment and function to the spinal column and pelvis. It is gentle and low impact. This technique is gentle and effective for many patients.
Gentle chiropractic provides maximum results in minimal visits. It is available at Advanced Wellness Solutions. If you would like to explore gentle chiropractic care, call our office today. We can help you get on the path to better health and pain free living.
Feeling tired is NOT just part of getting older. Fatigue could be a sign of an underlying medical condition that needs treatment.
Fatigue is more than just feeling tired. It’s an overall feeling of lack of energy. It isn’t the same as simply feeling drowsy or sleepy. Fatigue can also mean not having enough strength to do anything on your plate.
Feeling Tired? Symptoms of fatigue
Fatigue can include feeling sleepy or drowsy, but there are other symptoms as well. Other symptoms of fatigue include headache, dizziness and even impaired reflexes. Impaired reflexes can be especially dangerous, especially when driving in south Florida traffic. It can also impair your decision-making and judgement. It can affect your ability to react quickly and cause car accidents. The next time you see someone who’s driving like a crazy person, they may not be crazy. They may just be feeling tired and fatigued.
Fatigue is a common symptom for many medical conditions. If you’re feeling fatigued, it could be a sign of a serious underlying medical condition. It could also be caused by:
- lack of exercise
- poor diet.
Since we live in Florida, it’s possible that your fatigue may be the result of the heat. When it’s oppressively hot, you’re likely to be avoiding the unairconditioned outdoors. This can lead to you not getting enough vitamin D or exercise, which can lead to exhaustion and lethargy.
Feeling Tired? Try these tips to help you feel more energized:
- Reduce stress.
- Drink lots of water.
- Eat for energy, foods like protein, whole grains, high-fiber vegetables, nuts, and healthy oils.
- Take frequent breaks from sitting to stand up and walk around.
- Avoid caffeine after noon
- Resist the urge to nap during the day.
Most importantly, avoid energy drinks. They contain sugar and other ingredients that could make you feel even more exhausted later on.
Seek Medical Treatment for Fatigue
If you’re suffering from fatigue even after getting a good night’s sleep, it’s time to seek medical help. Unfortunately, according to a report from the NIH 1,
Patients generally regard fatigue as important (because it is disabling), whereas doctors do not (because it is diagnostically non-specific).
What this means is that in the world of Western medicine, fatigue can be caused by factors other than an underlying disease.
At Advanced Wellness Solutions, we won’t dismiss your complaint of fatigue. We will first perform a thorough consultation and exam to identify the specific symptoms of fatigue. We’ll then work to identify and address the factors potentially causing your fatigue.
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as chiropractic care are both effective at treating fatigue.
Chiropractic care has been shown to help successfully treat fatigue 2 with no dangerous side effects. Studies have shown that regular chiropractic care may contribute to an improved quality of life in patients suffering from CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) 3
Acupuncture is another treatment option for fatigue. A fundamental concept in Traditional Chinese Medicine is that QI (vital energy) flows freely through the body. When Qi isn’t flowing properly, it causes fatigue.
Scientific studies show that acupuncture and TCM offer proven benefits for treating fatigue without any negative side effects.4 Acupuncture has also been shown to increase serotonin levels which improves sleep and mood.5
Feeling tired shouldn’t be normal.
Fatigue is not just part of getting older. If you’re feeling fatigued, don’t dismiss it. Extreme stress, lack of sleep and decreased physical activity can trigger fatigue. It can also be a sign of a serious medical condition. If gentle chiropractic care and Traditional Chinese Medicine aren’t able to resolve your symptoms of fatigue, the medical professionals at Advance Wellness Solutions will refer you to another medical professional who can help.
If you’re suffering from fatigue, it’s time make an appointment with Advanced Wellness Solutions.
Gentle chiropractic is a safe, nonsurgical method of arthritis pain management. Gentle chiropractic care can help reduce inflammation and increase range of motion while reducing arthritis pain.
Movement is like lubrication for the joints. Gentle chiropractic adjustments can help to encourage full range of joint motion to provide safe arthritis pain management. In conjunction with the gentle chiropractic adjustment, electrical muscle stimulation is often used for immediate pain relief. In addition to in office therapies, patients are also given appropriate exercises to perform at home to promote increased joint mobility.
Arthritis is inflammation of the cartilage which causes swelling and tenderness in afflicted joints. Cartilage is the connective tissue that surrounds the ends of bones. It is dense, elastic tissue that supports and cushions the joints while helping joints to move smoothly. When cartilage becomes inflamed, joint pain and stiffness result.
The two most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. While the symptoms are similar, the cause of each is dramatically different.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease.
RA is an autoimmune disease is when the body’s immune system attacks healthy cells by mistake. In the case of RA, the healthy cells in the cartilage cushioning the joints are attacked. The joints affected are usually in the hands, wrists, and knees. When the body’s immune system attacks the joint cartilage, it becomes inflamed, swollen and tender. Eventually, the inflammation damages the joint cartilage as well as the bones of the joint. This can cause long-lasting or chronic pain, unsteadiness (lack of balance), and deformity (misshapenness). 3
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis.
OA is a degenerative condition that affects joint cartilage and bones. It causes pain, loss of mobility, as well as decreased muscle function and strength. Like RA, osteoarthritis causes joint pain and stiffness. It was once thought that in osteoarthritis, the joints were simply wearing out. Research has shown that OA is a complex process with many causes. It is not an inevitable part of aging experts say, but rather the result of a combination of factors.
While osteoarthritis can damage any joint, it most commonly affects joints that bear weight — like your knees, hips, feet, and spine. It often comes on gradually over months or years.2 Ten percent of men and 20% of women aged between 45 and 65 years report OA,4 with 80% of those older than 75 years showing radiographic evidence of OA.5
Treatments for Arthritis Pain
According to Scott Haldeman, MD, a neurologist in Santa Ana, California and Chairman Emeritus of the Research Council for the World Federation of Chiropractic as quoted in arthritis.org6,
Chiropractic care is one of the safest therapies you can use if you have back or neck pain due to osteoarthritis.
In addition to treating neck and back pain from osteoarthritis, gentle chiropractic treatment can also treat osteoarthritis of the hip 7 and other arthritic joints.
Gentle Chiropractic Care for arthritis pain
Gentle chiropractic care can help increase the range of motion in arthritic joints and reduce arthritic joint pain.
While gentle chiropractic care won’t repair or rebuild cartilage, it can relieve pressure on joints caused by arthritis. Gentle chiropractic care can also stop muscle spasms and tenderness caused by osteoarthritis through gentle manipulation of muscles and soft tissues surrounding arthritic joints.
Acupuncture for arthritis pain
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been used for thousands of years to relieve arthritis pain. While acupuncture can’t cure or reverse the process of arthritis, a study showed it can help you feel significantly less pain and function better. 8
It’s very common to reach for over the counter (OTC) pain medication for arthritis pain management. Unfortunately, all NSAIDs (including OTC pain medication) now carry a black box warning. This is the strongest of all FDA warnings and is reserved for drugs that pose a significant risk to the population. In 2007, the American Heart Association issued a scientific statement warning of the long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) 9 which included this warning:
“Consumers are advised that all over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications, including NSAIDs, should be used in strict accordance with the label directions. If use of an OTC NSAID is needed for longer than ten days, a physician should be consulted.”
A practice based study of patients with acute and chronic low back pain found that patients receiving chiropractic manipulation as their primary treatment had significant reductions in visual analogue scale (VAS) scores within two weeks of care.10 This study also included evaluation of traditional medical management with a primary treatment using NSAIDs. The same level of pain reduction was not reported in the NSAID group until the 12-week marker.
Herbs and supplements for arthritis pain relief
There are many herbal supplements which tout anti-inflammatory properties. It’s important to exercise caution when taking supplements. Just because a product is natural does not mean it’s safe. The contents of supplements are not verified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Some supplements can interact with medications or can cause health problems.
You should always consult your doctor or pharmacist before taking any supplement.
Turmeric, ginger and cinnamon are supplements that reduce inflammation in the body. There is also evidence that vitamin C and fish oil may help with arthritis pain while providing other health benefits.
Glucosamine sulfate supplements have unique anti-inflammatory effects. In some laboratory tests, it demonstrated a protective effect on the cartilage as well. Chondroitin sulfate supplements also appears to have anti-inflammatory properties. Some laboratory studies suggest that chondroitin sulfate may slow cartilage breakdown associated with osteoarthritis and even stimulate cartilage growth.11
Trigger point injections for arthritis pain relief
If chiropractic treatment alone does not provide adequate pain relief, the medical professionals at Advanced Wellness Solutions may recommend a trigger-point injection. A trigger-point injection usually contains an anesthetic and a steroid to immediately help alleviate arthritis pain. These injections are rarely a standalone treatment. They work best when combined with other conservative treatment methods such as chiropractic care.
Trigger point injection therapy can provide immediate and ongoing relief from pain in the targeted area while chiropractic treatments address the underlying cause of the pain.
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) for arthritis pain relief
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) delivers a small electric current to specific nerves. Tens units provide neuromodulation treatments which can ease pain with minimal risks and offer an alternative to pain medication for arthritis pain management. According to Arthritis.org 12
These devices are generally safe. However, they involve sending electrical impulses though your body. So it’s important to talk with your doctor first if you have a pacemaker, another implanted device, are pregnant, have epilepsy, or have a heart problem.
Topical medications for arthritis pain relief
Topical medications that do not contain NSAIDs that Advanced Wellness Solutions recommends are:
- CryoDerm Gel: It contains almost 300% more of the active ingredient and pain reliever menthol than other topical pain relievers. Menthol is used clinically as an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever. It creates a cold sensation on the skin, by activating the peripheral cold receptors.
- Biofreeze Professional: Biofreeze is greaseless, stainless and has a vanishing scent. It is an optimized, fast-acting proprietary formula.
Topical NSAIDS are now available without a prescription. Diclofenac sodium 1% gel (Voltaren Arthritis Pain) is now available at many pharmacies. A 2016 Cochrane review 14 concluded, “Topical diclofenac and topical ketoprofen can provide good levels of pain relief beyond carrier in osteoarthritis for a minority of people, but there is no evidence for other chronic painful conditions.”
Safe Arthritis Pain Management
When arthritis threatens to immobilize you, gentle chiropractic care can keep you moving.
Accepting new chiropractic patients. Call (772) 403-7640 to schedule your appointment.
We Accept All Major Medical Health Insurance and Medicare.
You can find safe arthritis pain management at Advanced Wellness Solutions. Effective gentle chiropractic care can help to relieve the pain and slow the damage to cartilage from osteoarthritis. Gentle chiropractic maximizes the function of arthritic joints by encouraging full range of joint motion.
Find veterans treatment for PTSD at Advanced Wellness Solutions.
Veterans seeking treatment for PTSD should know that acupuncture can treat PTSD symptoms of depression and pain. Acupuncture for veterans treatment for PTSD can also improve physical and mental health functioning. Acupuncture can also significantly improve sleep quality which in turn improves physical and mental health.
What is PTSD?
PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) can occur after a traumatic (extremely stressful) event. It is common to suffer stress after surviving traumatic events such as combat, being assaulted or even being in a car accident. However, if your stressful reactions don’t subside over time or are impacting how you live your life, you may have PTSD.
Experiencing trauma doesn’t mean you’ll develop PTSD. While about 8% of the general population will experience PTSD, the incidence for veterans is much higher. A public health study of PTSD in Iraq and Afghanistan veterans showed 15.7% of OEF/OIF deployed Veterans screened positive for PTSD compared to 10.9% of non-deployed Veterans.1 It is estimated that 30% of Vietnam Veterans have had PTSD in their lifetime.2
There are four main types of PTSD symptoms:3
- intrusive memories
- negative changes in thinking and mood
- changes in physical and emotional reactions.
Behavioral symptoms of PTSD include agitation, irritability, hostility, hypervigilance, self-destructive behavior, or social isolation. The psychological symptoms of PTSD include flashback, fear, severe anxiety, or mistrust.
PTSD also causes negative mood changes such as a loss of interest or pleasure in activities, guilt, or loneliness. Sleep disturbances including insomnia or nightmares are also common in people suffering from PTSD.
Talk to your doctor or a mental health professional if you or a loved one:
- have had disturbing thoughts and/or feelings about a traumatic event for more than a month
- if these thoughts and/or feelings are extreme or severe,
- feel you (or they) are losing control of your/their life.
Early treatment can help prevent PTSD symptoms from getting worse.
PTSD often presents simultaneously with other mental health conditions. Depression is the most common comorbidity of PTSD in veterans. Major depressive disorder (MDD) is nearly three to five times more likely to emerge in those with PTSD than those without PTSD.4 Other common comorbidities of PTSD in military veterans include anxiety and substance abuse or dependence. 5
Veterans Treatment for PTSD
One of the most frequently reported symptoms of PTSD among OEF/OIF veterans returning from deployment is sleep disturbances. 6 Sleep plays an incredibly important role in physical and mental health. See Sleep Helps you Heal for more information.
It is important for everyone to find drug free ways to get essential healthy sleep. Veterans suffering from PTSD need extra help in this area.
Acupuncture has been commonly used to treat insomnia in China for thousands of years. Dozens of randomized control trials show that acupuncture improves sleep quality. In these studies, acupuncture was superior to medications regarding the number of patients with total sleep duration.
Acupuncture plus medications showed better effect than medications alone on total sleep duration. Also, acupuncture plus herbs were significantly better than herbs alone on increase of sleep rates. 7
According to Chinese medicine, there are 2,000 meridian acupuncture points on the body. These points connect the body’s meridians or energetic pathways. Acupuncture is the practice of inserting very fine, sterile needles into specific points to facilitate natural healing.
Benefits of Acupuncture for Mental Health and Veterans Treatment for PTSD
Acupuncture has shown potential benefit in a wide range of mental health disorders including anxiety disorders and substance abuse disorders. There is growing clinical evidence to support the use of acupuncture for a variety of mental health disorders.
In 2014, Charles C Engel et. al. ran a well-designed randomized controlled trial. The trial compared the effectiveness of using acupuncture for PTSD. The subjects in the trial were divided into two categories: those who received usual PTSD care plus acupuncture compared to usual PTSD care alone.
The following is taken from Complementary and Alternative Medicine Approaches in the Treatment of PTSD by Gary H. Wynn
Acupuncturists in the study delivered a standardized treatment during the first four sessions to facilitate clearing of trauma, calming the spirit, and balancing the Qi. For the remaining four sessions, the acupuncturist was allowed to adjust the treatment based on clinical findings. Both groups were followed for 12 weeks.
At 12 weeks, the acupuncture treatment group showed significantly greater improvements in PTSD symptoms as well as improvements on ratings of depression, pain, and physical and mental health functioning.
In the study abstract,8
Mean improvement in PTSD severity was significantly greater among those receiving acupuncture than in those receiving UPC. Pre-post effect-sizes for these outcomes were large and robust.
If you suspect you or a loved on is suffering from PTSD, please seek treatment. PTSD symptoms usually get worse without treatment.
Call (772) 403-7640 to schedule your appointment.
Using acupuncture for pain relief has been an effective drug free treatment for thousands of years.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been treating pain and illness for thousands of years. Many studies have been performed to measure the effectiveness of acupuncture. The Acupuncture Trialists’ Collaboration compiled raw data from trials where the main outcome measures were pain and function. They concluded that acupuncture is an effective method of treating chronic pain. Their conclusions included: 1
- acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain
- that the effects of acupuncture persist for up to 12 months,
- and that the benefits of acupuncture cannot be explained away solely by the placebo effect.
The report itself 2 states:
Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic musculoskeletal, headache, and osteoarthritis pain.
Acupuncture for Pain Relief
Acupuncture involves the insertion of sterile, fine needles into specific spots to stimulate the body to heal itself. There are 2,000 acupuncture points according to Traditional Chinese medicine. These points are connected by meridians or energetic pathways. Energy or Qi (pronounced “chee” which means vital energy), flows through the body using these pathways.
In a healthy body, Qi (vital energy) flows freely. Pain, lack of function, or illness are signs that Qi has been disrupted.
By stimulating specific points on the body, Dr. Heather can help to restore healthy function to the body.
Advanced Wellness Solutions patients frequently tell us that they didn’t realize how much chronic pain was impacting their life.
The research makes it clear that chronic pain is bad for your physical health. Chronic pain can elevate blood pressure, pulse rate, adrenaline and cortisol serum levels. This puts hazardous stress on the cardio-vascular system. Chronic pain can cause elevated serum lipids and glucose levels.1
According Perry G. Fine, MD of the Department of Anesthesiology, School of Medicine, Pain Research Center, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA,1 the long-term consequences of chronic pain include:
- sleep disturbances
- cognitive processes and brain function
- mood/mental health
- cardiovascular health
- sexual function
Living with chronic pain makes everything more difficult. Chronic pain can make performing the simplest tasks more difficult. It also has a significant impact on your mental health.
Chronic Pain Affects Your Sleep
Acupuncture for Pain Relief and Insomnia
Insomnia has been treated with acupuncture in China for thousands of years. Western clinical studies confirm that acupuncture may have a beneficial effect on insomnia.3
Chronic Pain Affects Your Thoughts
Chronic pain doesn’t just harm your physical health. It affects your emotions and relationships. It even affects your state of mind. Chronic pain causes changes in the levels of stress hormones and neurochemicals found within your brain. This disruption can affect your mood, thinking and behavior.
Chronic pain can influence your thoughts, feelings, and memory. It also affects your concentration. It can even affect your connections with others.
Chronic Pain Affects Your Emotions
The emotional effects of chronic pain include:
- Anxiety, and
- Fear of re-injury
Living with chronic pain can affect your mood. Chronic pain can make you more susceptible to depression, anxiety, and fear. Chronic pain can cause sleep disturbances, depression, and a heightened risk of suicide.4
Acupuncture for Pain Relief and Mental Health
According to studies, acupuncture may be a valuable for those suffering from mental health disorders.4
Chronic Pain Affects Your Heart
Chronic pain can lead to a chronic stress reaction. This in turn causes an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. This stress reaction can lead to a reduced ability to fight off illnesses and diseases. It can increase the risk for heart disease.5
Acupuncture for Heart Health
Acupuncture reduces stress and improves heart function, according to UCLA researchers.6
Chronic Pain Affects Your Sex Life
Chronic pain may interfere with sexuality for several reasons. One is the nature of the pain itself. Other factors associated with chronic pain, include mood disorders, decreased sex drive (libido), medications or stress. All of these can affect sexual function 6.
Chronic Pain – the Invisible Disability
Chronic pain is the “invisible” disability.7 What this means is it is possible to look like the picture of health but suffer from chronic pain. Chronic pain makes everything more difficult.
Advanced Wellness Solutions’ health care practitioners treat chronic pain. If they can’t find a way to relieve or manage your pain, they’ll refer you to someone who can.
Advanced Wellness solutions offers drug free pain relief treatments. Our goal is to help our patients achieve a better quality of life.