Massage therapy and chiropractic care are both fantastic treatments for relieving pain, restoring mobility, and increasing overall health. When used together, these compatible therapies extend the health and wellness benefits of each treatment, benefiting the patient in a variety of ways. Massage therapy deals with the soft tissues, where chiropractic focuses on the nervous system, the musculoskeletal structure, and hard tissues. Knowing how these treatments work together can greatly improve your musculoskeletal function, thus improving your overall health.
Massage Prepares the Muscles for Chiropractic Adjustments
Massage therapy focuses on manipulating the soft tissues like muscles, tendons, and ligaments by improving circulation and blood flow that warms these soft tissues, causing them to loosen and relax. To do this, our experienced therapists apply light, moderate, or deep rhythmic hand and arm movements that help alleviate muscle pain and ache, while increasing flexibility. Using a variety of massage techniques, therapeutic massage improves circulation, decreases muscle tension and stiffness, and promotes relaxation. Increasing circulation delivers oxygen and nutrients that stimulate healthy muscle function, which promotes healing, reduces pain, and can prevent future injuries. This process helps muscles dispose of lactic acid that gathers in our muscles, often causing painful muscle spasms and stiffness. Additionally, massage therapists often incorporate stretching, herbal remedies, and aromatherapy into their treatments. A therapist’s healing touch encourages relaxation, while decreasing muscle ache associated with tension and spasms, leaving you feeling less tense and rejuvenated.
Chiropractic Before or After Massage
While massage therapy focuses on the soft tissues, chiropractic care centers on the nervous system and musculoskeletal dysfunction related to hard tissues like the spine, bones, and joints. Because these hard tissues are surrounded by muscles, tendons, and ligaments, tight muscles pull joints out of alignment. Warming, loosening, and relaxing the soft tissues before a chiropractic adjustment helps the bone structures adjust more easily, as tight muscles can sometimes make it difficult to manipulate hard tissues. Because chiropractors perform more extensive physical examinations, make medical diagnoses, order x-rays, MRIs, and other tests, they can help massage therapists identify and treat specific musculoskeletal dysfunctions. Receiving chiropractic care either before or after a therapeutic massage increases the effectiveness of both treatments, improving range of motion, promoting faster healing, extending the length of both treatment benefits, and improving overall function.
Why do my kids need chiropractic?
A child encounters many physical stresses during their growing years. The resulting problems in children’s spines can occur at almost any point in their development and growth. Since significant spinal trauma can occur at, or prior to birth, many parents elect to have their newborn’s spine checked right after birth. Many developmental milestones such as learning to hold up the head, sitting upright, crawling, and walking are all activities that are affected by spinal alignment and are important times to have a child checked by a chiropractor. Additionally, falls, sports injuries, playground bumps, heavy school bags and sitting all day in the classroom are all physical stresses to the growing child’s spine and nervous system.
How can I tell if my child has spinal problems?
Unless a child has an obvious problem it can be difficult for a parent to recognize when a child’s spine is not working correctly. There are some signs which can indicate spinal problems. These include:
disturbed sleeping patterns
breastfeeding difficulties in the very young
restricted head or neck movement to one side
one shoulder higher than the other
Common childhood disorders can also be linked with spinal dysfunction, these include:
recurrent ear infections
persistent sore throats and colds
bedwetting and/or constipation
One of the most common reasons for parents to seek chiropractic care for their child is physical trauma from an injury of some sort. The spinal misalignments that may occur at the time of the injury will not necessarily result in immediate pain or symptoms. In addition to physical stress, parents should be aware that emotional and chemical stress affect the child’s nervous system and may also warrant a spinal check up.
What is massage?
Massage is a general term for pressing, rubbing and manipulating your skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments. Massage may range from light stroking to deep pressure. There are many different types of massage, including what is offered at our office.
Deep massage. This massage technique uses slower, more-forceful strokes to target the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, commonly to help with muscle damage from injuries.
Benefits of massage
Massage is generally considered part of complementary and integrative medicine. It’s increasingly being offered along with standard treatment for a wide range of medical conditions and situations.
Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension.
Some studies have found massage may also be helpful for:
Insomnia related to stress
Myofascial pain syndrome
Soft tissue strains or injuries
Temporomandibular joint pain
What you can expect during a massage
In a typical massage therapy session, you undress or wear loose-fitting clothing. Undress only to the point that you’re comfortable. You generally lie on a table and cover yourself with a sheet. You can also have a massage while sitting in a chair, fully clothed. Your massage therapist should perform an evaluation through touch to locate painful or tense areas and to determine how much pressure to apply.
Depending on preference, your massage therapist may use oil or lotion to reduce friction on your skin. Tell your massage therapist if you might be allergic to any ingredients. If a massage therapist is pushing too hard, ask for lighter pressure. Occasionally you may have a sensitive spot in a muscle that feels like a knot. It’s likely to be uncomfortable while your massage therapist works it out. But if it becomes painful, speak up.
At our office, massage therapy session start at one hour sessions and up. No matter what kind of massage you choose, you should feel calm and relaxed during and after your massage.
Myth: Having an adjustment by a chiropractor is not safe.
Truth: According to studies, a chiropractic adjustment can be safer than most day-to-day activities like stargazing, having your hair washed, and more.
Myth: Prescription drugs, including the non-prescription variety, are safe to use.
Truth: Having a negative reaction to a prescription medication is common, and it’s listed within the top three causes of death in the United States. Chiropractic care offers an alternative to these drugs and can provide therapeutic relief from several ailments.
Myth: After you’ve seen a chiropractor once, you’ll need to go back all of the time.
Truth: In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, we recommend having regular adjustments. However, we do not put pressure on our patients to return, and the choice to continue is completely their own.
Myth: Chiropractic care does not actually work or is not that effective.
Truth: Chiropractic specialists across the U.S. have helped millions of patients suffering from various ailments. Several celebrities and athletes including Tiger Woods, Christie Brinkley, and countless others have benefitted from chiropractic care.
Myth: Kids should not see a chiropractor and do not need adjustments.
Truth: Chiropractic care is safe for all children of every age, starting from infancy and up to the teenage years.
Myth: The bumps and injuries my kids get throughout childhood are harmless.
Truth: An OSHA study estimates that a child may experience up to 1,500 traumas to the spine before their fifth birthday. If a child regularly sees a chiropractor, the adverse effects of these traumas may be minimized or corrected.
Myth: A chiropractic care specialist isn’t actually a doctor.
Truth: While in school, future chiropractors receive 4,485 hours of college classroom instruction while medical students receive around 4,248 hours.
Myth: Doing self-adjustments at home are safe and can help me.
Truth: A self-adjustment may appear to work due to the short period of relief, but it is actually just a false sense of treatment that has not fixed the underlying problem. In some cases, it may lead to an arthritic condition.
Myth: The sounds you hear during an adjustment are the sound of your bones rubbing together.
Truth: The sound is actually CO2 gas from inside the spine being released. When this occurs, a popping noise can be heard during an adjustment. AFC Physical Medicine & Chiropractic Care Centers now offers a noise-free treatment option.
Myth: Chiropractic care can become costly.
Truth: Several insurance companies, including Medicare, can cover chiropractic adjustments. These health insurers are aware of the statistical benefits of preventative care compared to other treatment options like prescription medication and surgery.
One common theme that is seen by your Gainesville chiropractor, Dr. Hudson, among patients is a desire to get out of pain while avoiding the use of either over-the-counter drugs or prescription medications. The over use of pain killers has been a steady and growing problem in our country. This is one problem chiropractic patients typically want to avoid. The number of people addicted to prescription opioids as well as the number of overdoses related to their use are on the rise and reaching alarming levels. So what can be done?
Many people are introduced to opioids as pain management following surgical procedures. There is a growing movement in the medical field to try to limit the number of opioids. For instance the Middle Tennessee School of Anesthesia in Nashville has been one such institution that is looking to reduce the use of opioids by using a nerve block technique rather than traditional drugs during surgical procedures. No doubt it will take time for techniques such as this to gain traction and spread through the medical community, but it is encouraging none the less to see the advancement of new techniques aimed at curbing the problems associated with over use of opioids.
Obviously chiropractic care is not a cure all but it is a choice made by a great many patients for acute and chronic pain. Are you looking to get relief from back pain without taking drugs that only mask the symptoms but don’t address the underlying cause? If so maybe chiropractic is for you. Diet, regular exercise and chiropractic care can all be part of your healthy lifestyle. So don’t live with nagging pain. Don’t put off taking care of yourself! Call and schedule with your local Gainesville chiropractor today. Get on the path of living a healthy lifestyle without pain today.
It seems we learn everyday about something new that can affect our health and wellbeing. For instance, did you know that according to many studies and Harvard Medical School nighttime light from artificial sources can significantly affect our health and mood? Not only can artificial light negatively impact our health but blue light has the greatest detrimental impact.
Nighttime light exposure has been linked to many diseases such as sleep disorders, diabetes and even cancers. Why you ask? It seems that exposure to nighttime light can suppress the production of melatonin which can throw of the circadian rhythms, body’s clock, making it difficult to fall asleep when you should.
What can you do to help cut down on this light exposure or minimize it’s affect? Much of our exposure comes from use of our electronic devices such as computers, phones or tablets. The screens on these devices use flat panel technology like many power efficient bulbs that produce that skews to the blue side of the spectrum. If you can’t give up your devices consider using an app that can color shift your screen color at night to reduce exposure to blue light. Apple’s latest version of iOS has a similar feature built in that can color shift the display once the sun sets. If you work at night and can’t avoid exposure, experts also suggest using a pair of glasses that filter out blue light or using red lights.
Living a healthy lifestyle includes so much, but we can now add limiting nighttime light exposure to the list. While we are always learning something new it is also important to remember what we already know.
Living a healthy lifestyle is made up of many things like eating a healthy balanced diet, regular exercise and of course good spinal health. For the later of course don’t wait call today and schedule to see your local Gainesville chiropractor. Get on the road to a wellness lifestyle that keeps your body working as efficiently as possible.
There are many components to living a healthy lifestyle: diet, exercise, spinal health, strategies for coping with stress to name just a few. Today we are going to focus more on the first of these diet. People are becoming much more aware of the products they buy (where they come from, what has been added to them etc) than they were in days gone by, especially when these products are the food they eat.
Many people do not realize that a mere 10 companies control most of the worlds food supply. Yes you read that correctly!! You can count the number of companies that control the food supply for most of the entire world on your fingers. This can perhaps be better illustrated in a visual way as seen in the graphic below. Take a moment and let this sink in.
This fact carries with it consequences. More foods are processed and contain more additives as they need to extend shelf life to accommodate longer shipping times and warehousing prior to finding their way onto store shelves. This can have consequences for our health as well weather it be allergies to food dyes or increased consumption of high fructose corn syrup or sodium intake.
So what can you do if it is virtually impossible to avoid these 10 global companies? Well avoid the inner isles at the supermarket as much as possible where most of the boxed and heavily processed foods are located. However, even in your supermarkets produce section you have lots of produce that is sprayed with coloring agents to make fruits and vegetables that were picked too soon look ripe and inviting. One thing you can do is try to shop more locally for produce at local farmers markets or food co-ops in your area. Here in the Gainesville/Ocala area one such place is www.FloridaGrubHub.com. Places such as these allow you to support local farmers and get a healthier, more flavorful product for your family.
Also keep up your spinal health by visiting your Gainesville chiropractor regularly. After all proper spinal alignment is a key part of health and can affect other systems throughout the body. Pain is not the only reason to see your Gainesville chiropractor. So don’t wait call and schedule today. Nothing is more important than your health.
Summer temperatures have been in overdrive for a while now. Gainesville has had temperatures in the mid 90’s and heat indexes reaching triple digits for weeks on end now. How can we exercise and live a healthy lifestyle and beat the at the same time?
In heat like we experience here in Gainesville heatstroke is real danger but can be avoided by taking some simple precautions. However, don’t let the heat keep you from living a healthy lifestyle. Exercise in the early morning, late evening or indoors. Hydrate, hydrate and hydrate some more. Most of us are dehydrated already and this likely further exacerbated by the heat. Drinking lots of water is key to good health let the heat get you in this good habit drinking ample amounts of water.
What else can I do to to live a healthy lifestyle while staying out of the heat? Regular stretching can go a long way keeping you trim and fit if it is too hot for vigorous outdoor activity. Focus on exercises that strengthen your core. Also don’t forget to keep up your spinal health with regular visits to your chiropractor. Our bodies perform best and when we have good spinal health. Call your Gainesville chiropractor today and start living a better, healthier life today.
Don’t suffer with pain. Painkillers are not the answer to your neck or back pain. Choose a lifestyle that leads to spinal health, choose a chiropractic lifestyle.
America is becoming increasingly addicted to prescription drugs which is leading to an epidemic among young people. Increasingly people are of the mindset and mentality that a pill is the answer to all their problems. If you watch television for any length of time you can see why. TV advertising is loaded with big pharma pushing pills to treat almost anything and everything.
Obviously prescription medicine has a time and a place, however, prescription drugs are seemingly being doled out at an alarming rate. Don’t be one of those who turns to painkillers for your neck and back pain. There is a better way.
Ask yourself the tough questions. What is causing your pain? Are you sitting in an un-ergonomic position all day at work? Is your mattress old and need replacing? Do you practice good form to avoid injury at the gym? These are the questions you need to ask, not just pop a pill for relief and avoid what is causing the problem. Sure it is quicker and easier to just “take something” but that isn’t solving anything.
Painkillers will simply mask the pain you are feeling and thus are a bandaid to the underlying problem. Spinal health is the only way to true relief of your pain. Visit your local Gainesville chiropractor today if you are experiencing pain. You can alleviate these symptoms by getting proper spinal alignment, improving your posture, exercising without resorting to perpetually taking painkillers.
Don’t suffer in pain. But don’t just medicate to solve the problem either. Call your local Gainesville chiropractor today and start yourself on the path to a healthier lifestyle. Chiropractic can help you achieve spinal health and a life that is both pain free and pill free.