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 […]
neck and shoulder pain
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.
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.
If you live in Stuart, Palm City or Hobe Sound Florida, and are injured in a car accident here are 3 reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident.
Car accidents can not only cause injury but anxiety as well. Even if your car accident was minor, your injuries could be serious, even life altering. According to a study published in the Society of Automotive Engineers, 1 vehicle crash damage does not directly correlate to the degree of occupant injury.
Unfortunately, it’s common for people to develop chronic issues as a result of a seemingly minor accident. What’s worse, you may not be aware that you’ve been injured immediately following the accident.
Accepting new patients. Call 855-509-5400 to schedule your appointment.
We Accept All Major Medical Health Insurance and Medicare.
Chiropractic care is the best option for musculoskeletal injuries, including those suffered in car accidents. Many of these injuries can be effectively treated without drugs or surgery. Fortunately, the injuries suffered in most minor auto accidents don’t require surgery and drugs.
Here are the top three reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident in Martin County, FL
#1: Imaging can’t catch micro-tears that are caused by a car accident.
Unfortunately, medical imaging such as X-rays or MRIs can’t detect the micro-tears in ligaments and muscles after a traumatic injury like those resulting from an auto accident. These microscopic tears in the muscle are why you may wake up with severe pain the day after an accident. Whiplash is a soft tissue neck injury that occurs when the neck snaps back and forth in a rapid motion. That rapid snapping back and forth causes microscopic tears in the neck muscles.
Soft-tissue injuries (a.k.a. micro-tears in ligaments and muscles) like whiplash can take a long time to heal. One study found that more than 70 percent of people who visited the emergency room after a car accident were still in pain six weeks later. Other researchers have noted that nearly half of whiplash sufferers continue to experience symptoms three months later, while 25 percent remain symptomatic for six months.2
Traumatic injuries such as those suffered in a car accident often include micro-tears and micro lesions. These cause inflammation which in turn causes pain. 3 Studies show that chiropractic adjustments help the body release anti-inflammatory Interleukin 6 (IL-6)4. Interleukin 6 (IL-6) plays an integral role in the body’s healing ability, including trauma, burns, cancers and infections.5
#2: Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident Helps Heal Internal Scar Tissues
When you hear the word “scar tissue” you might think of the scar from a nasty fall off your bike when you were young. Your body also forms this special type of tissue inside your body when your ligaments and muscles are injured. Just as the scar tissue you see on your skin doesn’t look or act like your undamaged skin, the scar tissue inside your body doesn’t have the same elasticity or mobility of uninjured soft tissue.
When scar tissue forms in the ligaments, especially those in your neck or back, it can lead to long term pain and reduced mobility. Scar tissue continues to grow and change throughout the recovery process which may take from twelve to eighteen months.6 Prompt chiropractic care after a car accident is very effective at remodeling scar tissue. Chiropractic treatment and stretching of scar tissue helps align the collagen fibers, allowing it tolerate daily activities. 7
Studies show that car accident victims treated within one week of their accident saw the best overall improvement. 8 Many chiropractors refer to this time period as the “golden week” because the inflammatory reaction which occurs during this period, if left unchecked, will produce scars and adhesions that make future management more difficult.
#3: Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident Releases Pain Relieving Hormones
Studies also show that chiropractic care helps release pain reducing hormones.9 These hormones provide natural pain relief from both acute and chronic pain. They will help relieve the pain from the acute injuries suffered in a car accident. Fortunately, they don’t stop there! They will also help any other areas that were causing pain before the accident.
Unfortunately, turning to pain pills can actually make pain worse in the long run. Contrary to marketing messages that imply otherwise, pain medications do not speed up the healing process. Pain medications (both OTC and prescription) can be very beneficial for the first 7 – 10 days after a traumatic injury. Used in the short term, these can provide symptomatic relief while chiropractic care breaks up scar tissue and adhesions, relieving stiffness, pain and the discomfort it causes.
We’re learning that you won’t find the solution to pain – even chronic pain – in a pill. Not only are opioid medications dangerous and addictive, they can actually cause your pain to worsen. Studies show that when you use an opioid pain reliever, it sets off a chain of immune signals in the spinal cord that amplify pain rather than dulling it, even after the drug leaves the body. 10
Prompt Chiropractic Care is Key
Gentle chiropractic care will help prevent long-term, chronic pain conditions and allow you to achieve optimal recovery after an auto accident. Gentle Chiropractic Care is a newer method of chiropractic care. It replaces high-velocity adjustments with low-velocity, low amplitude manipulations. It is performed with a gentle touch, targeting a specific area. Gentle chiropractic care is more comfortable and provides maximum benefit from minimal visits.
If you or someone you know has been in a car accident and you need gentle chiropractic treatment, call 855-509-5400 to schedule an appointment.
Do you have dull aching pain in the back of your neck?
Does that pain sometimes travel down to your arms?
Is your neck not moving as well as it has before?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you could be suffering from facet syndrome. Facet syndrome is degenerative joint disease of the facet joint that can mimic the symptoms of a herniated disc.
The facet joints play an important role in stabilizing the spine while allowing movement. When these joints become injured in some way, it can result in considerable pain and disability. Since there are facet joints throughout most of the spine, this is a condition that can affect the neck, upper back and the lower back. Even though facet syndrome can occur in any facet joint, it appears most often in high movement and weight bearing areas such as the neck and low back.
Chiropractic care specializes in treating disorders of the musculoskeletal system and can offer some of the most effective treatment options for facet syndrome.
What causes facet syndrome?
The cause of facet syndrome is still unclear. There are several factors that can contribute to the presentation of facet syndrome.
These factors are:
- Age 50 or older
- Repeated trauma to the neck or low back
- Repetitive stressful movement
Degeneration of the facet joint due to age or trauma causes the inflammation that produces pain in facet syndrome. Inflammation irritates the small nerves located in the facet joint causing pain.
What are the symptoms of facet syndrome?
The symptoms vary from depending on the area that is involved.
In the cervical region the symptoms that may present are:
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Limited range of motion when turning the head and bending the neck
In the lumbar region the symptoms that may present are:
- Lower back pain
- Radiating pain down the buttocks or back of the thighs
- Pain when twisting or arching the lower back
How do you treat facet syndrome?
In both the cervical and lumbar regions treatment usually starts conservative.
Conservative treatments include:
- Chiropractic adjustments
- Physical Therapy
- Hot/Cold therapy
- Range of motion exercises
- At home stretching
If conservative treatment fails there are other options such as:
- Intra-articular facet injections
- Median nerve block
- Radiofrequency neurotomy
- Cervical Fusion
Surgical options are usually not necessary because conservative treatment often resolves the issue. All surgical intervention should not be taken lightly and should only be considered if a great deal of conservative treatment has failed.
If you are experiencing symptoms of facet syndrome and wish to discuss your treatments options, contact us at 855-509-5400