Each year thousands of Martin County residents are involved in car accidents. Here are 3 reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident. Some car accidents cause minor damage while others cause major damage. The severity of the damage to vehicles and the severity of the injuries vary. Did you know that the vehicle […]
Conditions Chiropractors Treat
Chiropractors treat a variety of conditions including musculoskeletal injuries. Below is an archive of articles featuring the conditions that respond well to chiropractic treatment.
The piriformis is a powerful, flat, pear-shaped musclegoes unnoticed because it’s located beneath the gluteal musculature. However, when the piriformis muscle causes compression or contraction on certain areas of the sciatic nerve, it can cause pain in the buttocks and/or lower back that can radiate down the leg to the foot.
The two piriformis muscles sit behind the hip sockets, extending from the upper, outer corner of each femur (thighbone) to the sacrum. These two pear-shaped muscles are joined by a band of connective tissue, or fascia, that stretches across the sacrum just above the tailbone.
The primary function of the piriformis is the external rotation of the hip, which is why swinging a golf club can cause piriformis syndrome. is The piriformis msucle is part of the hip rotator cuff, which are small, deep muscles that rotate the leg outward at the hip.
The piriformis muscle also helps with abduction or the act of moving your leg away from the midline of your body. It also plays a role when you extend and lift your leg behind you. The piriformis laterally rotates the femur with hip extension and abducts the femur with hip flexion.
Piriformis syndrome effects women more than men in a ratio of 6:1.
What are the symptoms of piriformis syndrome?
The symptoms of piriformis syndrome vary from person to person but can include:
- Chronic pain in the buttocks
- Pain when rising from a seated position
- Pain increased with moving the leg off to the side or moving the leg back and forth
- Inability to sit without pain
- pain, sometimes severe when climbing stairs, walking, running, and golfing
- tingling and numbness,
- pain that can go from the back to the foot,
Piriformis syndrome is pain that may be difficult to pinpoint. Often located in the hip, buttocks and distal part of the leg, it can produce a pain that is very similar to sciatic pain.
In 20% of the population the piriformis splits and the sciatic nerve runs through that split. Those people are much more susceptible to piriformis syndrome due to their unique anatomical structure.
What causes piriformis syndrome?
The cause of piriformis syndrome is varied.
You can develop piriformis syndrome from everyday activities, such as sitting for long periods of time, climbing stairs, walking, or running. You can also develop it after a traumatic event, such as a car accident or a fall.
High activity level sports such as skiing, tennis or long-distance bikers can cause piriformis syndrome. A golfers swing can also cause piriformis syndrome.
What are the treatments for piriformis syndrome?
This is a muscle that contributes to many leg and hip movements. When this muscle is aggravated, it doesn’t suffer in silence. Rest is an important part of the treatment process. If you continue performing aggravating activities during treatment, then expect it to take longer to heal. Treatments for piriformis syndrome include:
- Chiropractic adjustments
- Physical therapy
- Myofascial release techniques (such as cupping)
- At home exercises
- TENS unit
If you are experiencing pain in your buttocks, pain when rising from a seated position or any of the other symptoms of piriformis syndrome, you should schedule an appointment with your local chiropractor. If you live or work in the Stuart, Florida area, contact Advanced Wellness Solutions at 855-509-5400 to schedule your appointment today.
When you went to bed, everything was fine, but you woke up one morning unable to turn your head in any direction. If this has happened to you, there’s a distinct possibility that you’re suffering from torticollis.
What is torticollis?
Torticollis is a condition where the muscles of the neck spasm causing the head to be tilted. The head tilt can happen in several directions depending on what muscles in the neck are in spasm. Torticollis can result from a traumatic event, such as a car accident or a fall.
There are two types of torticollis acquired and congenital .
Acquired torticollis can affect anyone at any age. It has a myriad of causes but often develops as a result of damage to the muscles, nervous system or upper spine.
The most important key in treating acquired torticollis is to identify the root cause of the condition.
Symptoms of torticollis:
The symptoms of torticollis can differ from person to person but generally they are:
- Limited range of motion of the head
- Head tremor
- Neck pain
- Shoulder that is higher on one side of the body
- Stiffness of the neck muscles
- Swelling of the neck muscles (possibly present at birth)
Congenital torticollis is rare and is often due to birthing trauma. When an infant is suffering from congenital torticollis, you’ll notice that the baby is always lying down or sitting with his head tilted to to one side. No matter what your baby does, the baby’s head is constantly tilted to the same side.
The muscle most often injured is the sternocleidomastoid (SCM). This damage often occurs in babies who were delivered breech or where removed with forceps. Treatment for babies with congenital torticollis is often successful, especially when it is started within three months of birth.
What are the treatments for torticollis?
Congenital torticollis is treated by:
- Passive stretching of the neck muscles
- Postural training/proper positioning of the head
If conservative treatment fails then surgery can be done to correct the problem. Surgery is most often performed in the child’s preschool years.
Acquired torticollis is treated after all underlying pathology is ruled out by:
- Chiropractic adjustments
- Cervical traction
- Stretches and exercises for cervical muscles
In severe cases, surgery may be required. Before you consider surgery, you should first try 8 weeks of conservative care treatment like chiropractic care 1.
Complications from untreated torticollis could be muscle swelling due to constant contraction and damage to nerves from compression.
If you are experiencing neck pain, it could be torticollis. If you live or work in Stuart, FL then call 855-509-5400 to schedule an appointment with Advanced Wellness Solutions.
Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction a.k.a. myofascial pain disorder is a surprisingly common complaint. At best TMJ problems can cause annoying and sometimes painful clicking. At it’s worst, Temporomandibular joint dysfunction can cause painful headaches.
How can I tell if it’s TMJ?
TMJ dysfunction often presents with a dull, aching pain in and around the ear. In some cases, the pain travels to the side of the scalp, back of the head or down into the neck. Tenderness in the jaw area and neck is common
TMJ dysfunction is often made worse by chewing, excessive talking or yawning.
What causes TMJ dysfunction?
TMJ dysfunction rarely has a single defining cause. Instead, it is usually the result of several contributing factors including:
- Degenerative joint disease affecting the jaw can cause motion issues and pain.
- Stress and associated grinding of teeth can cause extreme jaw pain and headaches.
- A history of trauma involving the jaw can also play a role in TMJ dysfunction.
Often it is a combination of all of these factors that leads to TMJ dysfunction.
How do you treat TMJ?
Chiropractors can provide significant relief of the pain caused by TMJ dysfunction by manipulation.
Unfortunately, most people are unaware that the jaw can be adjusted.
Adjusting the jaw is a delicate procedure that requires a skilled hand using a very light technique or gentle chiropractic care. Because of the finesse involved, there usually isn’t the satisfying “clunk” which accompanies many other joint manipulations.
A series of TMJ adjustments by a skilled chiropractor can be the determining factor in whether concurrent TMJ therapies are able to provide long term relief.
Reducing muscle spasms is another important part of chiropractic treatment of TMJ dysfunction which is key in helping to reduce the associated headaches almost immediately.
TMJ dysfunction pain often affects other nearby areas , and effective chiropractic treatment includes reducing the spasm in other affected areas including the muscles of the neck, shoulders and face.
The muscle spasms associated with TMJ dysfunction must be directly addressed to achieve long term relief of TMJ headaches and pain. Muscle spasm reduction and release is achieved by using trigger point therapy, a temporarily uncomfortable but very effective form of muscle release.
The Role of Stress Reduction
A third often overlooked but very important component in treating TMJ dysfunction and associated headaches is stress reduction.
Many TMJ headache sufferers clench and grind their teeth subconsciously as a reaction to stress. This relentless clenching and grinding can contribute to the development TMJ pain/headaches.
You can mitigate teeth clenching and grinding with a mouth piece but to achieve long term pain relief it must be used with relaxation techniques for long term success.
If you are experiencing TMJ symptoms or headaches and wish to discuss your treatments options please call 855-509-5400 to schedule your appointment goday.
Migraine headaches have become part of our everyday lingo. Many times, if someone is having a severe headache, they assume they’re having a migraine. There are many different types of headaches, many of which respond well to chiropractic care. However, the question remains:
What is a migraine?
A migraine is defined as recurring episodes of one sided headaches that are usually throbbing and can last 1 to 3 days. Some migraine sufferer see an aura, also known as a visual disturbance, but others may not.
There are two types of migraines classic migraine and common migraine.
According to the International Headache Society the criteria for a classic migraine are:
- Migraine with aura
- Minimum of 2 attacks of headache with any 3 of the following:
- Reversible aura
- Aura develops gradually over 4 min+
- Aura does not last more than 1 hour
- Unilateral headache follows the aura
- With at least 1 of the following:
- Nausea or vomiting
- phonophobia or photophobia
- Aura may show a blind spot (scotoma)
- Surrounded by flashing lights (scintillation)
The International Headache Society criteria for a common migraine are:
- Migraine without aura [common]
- Minimum of 5 attacks
- Plus any 2 of the following:
- Unilateral location
- Pulsatile quality
- Worse on climbing stairs
- At least 1 of the following:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Photophobia or phonophobia
The primary difference between Classic Migraines and Common Migraines is the absence or presence of visual disturbances.
Despite the fact that there are differences between the two types of migraines, the causes and treatments for both types of migraines are the same.
What causes migraines?
To date there is no one true cause of migraines. Genetics seems to play a role along with hormonal changes and dietary triggers.
Triggers for migraines include:
- Hormonal changes, especially in women during their menstrual cycle
- Foods such as cheese, salt and high nitrate foods (processed foods)
- Drinks such as alcohol and highly caffeinated drinks
- Changes in sleep patterns and environment
- Physical activity
- Sensory stimuli such as bright light or smells of certain foods
What are the treatments for migraines?
There are many medications available to someone who suffers from migraines. OTC painkillers can help to reduce the pain of a migraine.
Chiropractic care and lifestyle changes can make a huge impact on migraine episodes.
Dealing with the triggers in one’s diet and relieving tension in cervical muscles can help to reduce the pain and frequency of migraines.
It is important to note that migraines to date cannot be cured; however migraines can be managed through lifestyle modifications. Discovering your migraine triggers can help you to avoid those triggers in the future. Stress reduction is also an important part of controlling migraine headaches.
If you are experiencing migraine headaches and wish to discuss your treatments options, please contact us.
Cluster headaches are also called “suicide headaches” because of the extreme pain that they cause. Cluster headaches are a rare but devastating form of non-life threatening headaches. These headaches occur in cycles with each cycle lasting weeks to months.
Cluster headaches result when the trigeminal nerve is often pinched, compressed, or shifted improperly due to a spinal misalignment. With that in mind, a chiropractor is ideally suited to help you treat your cluster headaches.
While attending USF, Dr. Danielle of Advanced Wellness Solutions was involved in a serious car accident. Her injuries caused trigeminal nerve pain, which is described as the most excruciating pain known to humanity. Fortunately, she saw a chiropractor (also a Palmer grad), who was able to successfully treat her injuries that caused her cluster headaches. As a result, she was able to complete her bachelor’s degree and go on to graduate from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Port Orange Florida.
During the cluster headache cycle, headaches can happen as frequently as every day and last for a few minutes to a few hours. After going through a cycle of cluster headaches, the sufferer will go into a period of remission. During this period of remission no headaches will occur. A period of remission can last anywhere from several months to years.
How do you know if your headache qualifies as a cluster headache?
The symptoms of a cluster headache are pain that is sudden, severe and on one side of the face. The pain often centers around one eye. This pain can be so intense that patients report feeling as if a hot poker has been stabbed into their eye.
The International Headache Society 1criteria is
“a minimum of 5 attacks in a predictable manner [about the same time every day] with severe unilateral periorbital pain peaking in 10-15 minutes and lasting up to 3 hours plus any of the following on the same side: ptosis, red eye, constricted pupil, tearing, nasal congestion and a runny nose. Attacks can occur several times per day for one to several weeks. Then recurrence may not occur for months.”
Other symptoms that often occur are:
- excessive tearing
- redness in your eye on the affected side
- stuffy or runny nasal passage in your nostril on the affected side of your face,
- pale skin (pallor) on your face,
- swelling around your eye on the affected side of your face,
- drooping eyelid (ptosis).
Seek emergency care if you have any of these signs and symptoms:
- Abrupt, severe headache, often like a thunderclap
- Headache with a fever, nausea or vomiting, stiff neck, mental confusion, seizures, numbness, or speaking difficulties, which may indicate a number of problems, including stroke, meningitis, encephalitis or brain tumor
- Headache after a head injury, even if it’s a minor fall or bump, especially if it gets worse.
- A sudden, severe headache unlike any other headache you’ve experienced
- Headache that gets progressively worse over days and changes in pattern
What causes cluster headaches?
Because of the cycles of intense pain, patients who suffer from cluster headaches can be emotionally raw by the time they seek treatment. This is why speaking with a qualified therapist or counselor is very important. These headaches are severe and have earned the nickname suicide headaches for a reason. In addition to individual therapy, there are also support groups available solely for suffers of cluster headaches.
The cause of cluster headaches is unknown. However an abnormality in the hypothalamus may be to blame due to the clockwork like nature of the attacks. Food and hormones do not appear to play a role but with the splitting headaches that can occur with alcohol consumption, cluster headache suffers tend to avoid alcohol.
Some factors that may affect or trigger cluster headaches:
- Barometric pressure changes
- Napping in the afternoon
- In males parasympathetic activation and sympathetic suppression
- Family history of cluster headaches
- How do you treat cluster headaches?
Treatments for cluster headaches are often palliative (treatments which relieve the pain and make you feel better) with treatment centering on the relieving the pain.
Standard medical intervention includes several pharmaceutical interventions such as oxygen, triptans and local anesthetics.
If taken in the evening, 10 Milligrams of Melatonin can help to reduce nighttime episodes.
Alternative treatments such as chiropractic care and acupuncture are most effective at relieving the symptoms of cluster headaches, but are minimally effective at completely resolving the cycles of cluster headaches.
Because of the intense pain, patients who suffer from cluster headaches are often emotionally and physically drained from the cycles by the time they seek treatment.
Chiropractic care can help to relieve tension in the cervical area due to stress and provide nutritional counseling. Nutritional intervention has been shown to be effective in reducing cluster headaches and cycles.
If you are experiencing cluster headaches and wish to discuss your treatments options, please call 855-509-5400 to schedule your appointment.
“Home & News.” International Headache Society. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.
“Cluster Headache.” Definition. Mayo Clinic, n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.
Have you ever been sitting at your desk and felt a headache coming on? If it’s a tight headache with band like pains around your head, then chances are good you were experiencing a tension headache.
Note: If you ever experience a vision disturbances or nausea with a headache, seek medical attention immediately!
Can a chiropractor help with tension headaches? Most definitely! Research shows that spinal manipulation – the primary form of care provided by doctors of chiropractic – may be an effective treatment option for tension headaches and headaches that originate in the neck.1
How do you treat your tension headaches?
- Do you grit your teeth and bear through it until it passes?
- Do you take a pill and hope it helps?
- Do you search Pinterest for that last pin you saw on how to reduce a headache?
If you’re experiencing frequent tension headaches, I recommend that your first course of action should be to educate yourself on the symptoms and causes of tension headaches.
What is a tension headache?
Tension headaches are described as tight, band like pain that goes around the temples and are non-throbbing. The International Headache Society diagnostic criteria for tension headaches are at least 10 episodes lasting 30 minutes to 7 days PLUS 2 of the following:
- Bilateral location
- Pressing or tightening or squeezing in character
- Mild to moderate intensity
- Not aggravated by activity
In addition, there should not be any nausea, photophobia (sensitivity to light) or phonophobia (sensitivity to sound).
If your headache is accompanied by nausea, sensitivity to light or sensitivity to sound, your headache may be a common or classic migraine.
What causes tension headaches?
Although tension headaches are the most common type of headache, the cause remains a relative mystery. Posture, stress and diet all seem to contribute to tension headaches.
Women and middle aged individuals are at a greater risk for tension headaches although the reasoning behind this is still unclear.
It is possible that those who suffer from tension headaches are more sensitive to stress and pain.
Another popular explanation for tension headaches is muscle spasms, although there is debate about whether the muscle spasms cause the tension headache or if the increased sensitivity to pain makes the muscle spasms more pronounced.
Tension headaches are most prevalent in the afternoon and evening hours.
How do you treat tension headaches?
Tension headaches can be treated with over the counter (OTC) medication, lifestyle changes, stress reduction, and chiropractic care.
Lifestyle changes include:
- Diet changes to reduce alcohol and nitrates.
- Posture while sitting at a desk, driving and standing
- Increased water consumption to reduce muscle spasms
- Increase exercise
Stress reduction can include:
- Setting aside a certain time of day to relax and unwind
- Start a calming hobby
Drug Free Headache Treatments and Headache Relief
Chiropractic care for tension headaches may include
- Postural and Ergonomic Instruction
- Nutritional Supplementation
- Trigger Point Therapy
According to the ACA website 1:
Research shows that spinal manipulation – the primary form of care provided by doctors of chiropractic – may be an effective treatment option for tension headaches and headaches that originate in the neck.A report released in 2001 by researchers at the Duke University Evidence-Based Practice Center in Durham, NC, found that spinal manipulation resulted in almost immediate improvement for those headaches that originate in the neck, and had significantly fewer side effects and longer-lasting relief of tension-type headache than a commonly prescribed medication.Also, a 1995 study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that spinal manipulative therapy is an effective treatment for tension headaches and that those who ceased chiropractic treatment after four weeks experienced a sustained therapeutic benefit in contrast with those patients who received a commonly prescribed medication.
If you are experiencing tension headaches and wish to discuss your treatments options please contact Advanced Wellness Solutions today.