Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Upper Cervical Care - Rockford

The question arises what we actually do in our office.
People often think of a chiropractic office as a place where you get "cracked," or "manipulated," or a place where you go to get rid of pain.
Getting rid of pain is a very good thing, but with chiropractic procedures, pain is often the last thing to go on the road to getting health restored. Along the way, there are steps to be followed.
The 1st Step is to find out why health is breaking down.
But let's take a moment to look at the modern history of these procedures.
In 1895, Dr. Palmer discovered that bones out of place prevented nerves from doing their job keeping you healthy. As soon as he began teaching his work, controversy developed.
That's a testament to the creativity and ingenuity of our grandfathers and great-grandfathers.
An early student, Alva Gregory, believed that restoring normal motion in the segments was key. He also believed that thrusting into a spinal segment had therapeutic value regardless of whether a subluxation had been identified. We still see this today in the physical therapy research world as they try to figure out the best place to mobilize when there is spinal pain.
We don't thrust into spinal segments, so check that off.
Solon Langworthy, a 1901 Palmer graduate believed that the problem was in the narrowing of the joint spaces, and hence began the practice of traction.
We don't traction, so check that off.
Oakley G. Smith, a Palmer graduate from 1899, rejected the bone-pinch concept in favor of the "cramping of connective tissue" concept. This was the beginning of Naprapathy, which works with loosening the connective tissue around the spine.
We don't work with the soft tissue, so check that off.
Other procedures, such as Naturopathy, work with educating the person in the ways of a healthy lifestyle using diet, herbal or food supplements, and other means to help the body maintain balance. Currently, the Naturopathic curriculum at one school includes training in "diversified" chiropractic manipulation. Remember Gregory?
We don't do Naturopathy.
Upper cervical chiropractic works with the insides of the system, deep, deep inside. Before the nerves get out to the joints of the spine, they move from the brain into the spinal canal. Right at that point is the most sensitive place in the spine. The top of the neck is the most likely to be damaged or misaligned in a whiplash injury, a biking injury, a sledding accident, a soccer trauma, a fall down the steps, a bump on the head while painting the house......the list is endless.
But when it gets misaligned, the entire spine goes out of balance, the spinal cord becomes distorted and ischemic, and your health begins to decline. Eventually the segments of the spine become individually misaligned and the ligaments and connective tissue squeezes the nerves. Pain ensues.
So put a big circle around this point - upper cervical care is about restoring health from the inside, so the body can straighten itself out, the ligaments and connective tissue can restore itself and pain can go away as the tissues "ungrow" the damage.
Even though other procedures have history, have miracle stories, we don't do them. Instead, we do what we find to be more efficient and more cost-effective for people, we correct the ability of the brain to manage its own processes.
Upper Cervical Care - Rockford, a division of 1st Step Chiropractic, S.C.
4519 Highcrest Rd, Rockford, IL 61107. 815-398-4500

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Rockford Upper Cervical Care and Your Nerves

Why do the pupils of your eyes get large when you are enraged? Why do they shrink when you are peaceful? The answer lies in how the brain is "wired" to the parts of the body.

We know that the brain controls every cell in your body. We have known that for over 2,000 years, but have not always used that information wisely. Within the past 100 years with the advent of specific chiropractic procedures, we have been able to use that information to great benefit for the community. Let's look at the eyes and how they tell us what's going on inside...
The two divisions of the autonomic nerve system work in opposite ways - one tells body parts to "get going" and the other tells body parts to "relax...chill out!" In the eyes, the part that tells things to "get going" is the sympathetic nerve system. There are tiny nerve fibers that originate in the lower neck/upper back which travel up the neck, through the head and settle on the "dilator pupillae" muscle. This is the muscle that makes your pupils get big.

Another way to think of the sympathetic nerves is to recall the phrase "fight or flight." When a person is agitated, terrified, ready to go out on stage for the graduation recital, ready to go down the aisle and get married....there's going to be a considerable excitement.
Belladonna: a poison that enlarges pupils
And what I can remember most easily is the effect of Belladonna on the nerve system. Main characteristics of Belladonna (deadly nightshade) poisoning includes furious excitement, hot, red skin, flushed face, excited mental state, dry mouth....all signs of sympathetic dominance. Not least of these signs is dilated (large) pupils. (from Boericke Materia Medica).
Interestingly enough, in the final battle of King Richard III, if his opponent had smacked him really hard on the base of the neck on the left side damaging the sympathetic nerves running his left eye, his attackers would have seen his left pupil suddenly shrink as the influence of those nerves ceased.
His right eye would have retained the large pupil characteristic of someone fighting for his life (showing sympathetic "fight or flight" response) but the left pupil would have had no signal coming from the controlling nerves from the neck that were damaged.
It's too bad about King Richard. His nerves and eye control could not have been helped by upper cervical care at this point in his life. But it's possible that his scoliosis could have been corrected with upper cervical care properly applied in his youth. We see correction or reduction of scoliosis on a daily basis. It is even possible that upper cervical care could have improved his health and reflexes to the point that he could have been able to fight better, not get killed, and maintain control of the English monarchy. But isn't it interesting that the knowledge about the importance of the head was used in a way to expedite the death of King Richard? It was a sword blow to the head that finished him off.

1st Step Upper Cervical Care Center, Rockford, IL. Keeping your head on straight...


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Rockford Chiropractor: Helping traumatic brain injury

I was relaxing in the Sunday afternoon sunshine today, listening to the far-off rhythmic hammering of a woodpecker. Everyone has something useful to do - eating, relaxing, foraging - even birds.
But then I got to wondering why woodpeckers don't suffer traumatic brain injury with all that hammering they do with their heads...
I take care of people who have had head injuries. Motorcyclists, victims of car accidents, victims of sports trauma, are some of the people that upper cervical care helps to restore. What don't we know about the difference between our head and neck structures and that of the woodpecker?
We already know how the connection between the head and neck can be displaced. This displacement is called a "subluxation." A subluxation creates interference with nerve transmission and can lead to pathological changes in joints, nerves, muscles, and the organs that those nerves supply.
When there is a TBI, this subluxation prevents the bones of the skull from moving back into their normal relationships, compressing the brain and causing increased intra-cranial pressures, among other things. Did someone say headaches?
Restoring the relation between the head and neck, removing the subluxation has a number of effects; first of all, the skull bones relax and begin to move freely again, allowing the pressure on the brain to go down. Second, the spine moves back into balance - what is perceived as scoliosis resolves. Then all the signals moving from the brain to the body normalize so that muscles come back to balance, organs function at a higher level....you get the picture...health stops decaying.
So can you answer the question why we don't have woodpeckers dropping out of the sky with concussions?
Taking care of people....1st Step Upper Cervical Care Center, a division of 1st Step Chiropractic, S.C. 815-398-4500.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Rockford Upper Cervical: What the 5th grader's textbook says...

My wife asked me to review this science textbook for potential use by our daughter. "Is it accurate?" she asked. I like testing these books by going straight to the chapter on the nerve system. Read with me....
"Have you ever wondered what causes your muscles to contract or how you can tell the difference between hot and cold? Do you ponder how you are able to feel love or perhaps why you can remember what happened last Saturday? How is it that you can even wonder about these things?
Well, God gave you a special system called your nervous system that enables you to do all these things and much, much more. Without it, you really and truly wouldn't be you. Your nervous system controls a huge number of activities in your body, and scientists are discovering more of its wonders every day." (Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology, Jeannie Fulbright and Brooke Ryan. Apologia Science. 2010)
Good start! So why do we forget that everything we do, feel, or think is happening through our nerve system. Did you know that a person's face will display how they are feeling inside? This is partially because our body organs, such as the stomach, send "ouch" signals to a part of the brain that is directly beside the nerves that control your facial expressions! When a person's spine is out of balance, the body organs cannot get good signals to operate right. They begin to cry "ouch!" The face will show this, even though a person cannot feel the distress going on deep inside.
When we restore balance to the spine, all the body organs begin to function at a higher level and the face relaxes. Our patients who are in balance look younger and brighter than people who ignore their nerve system.
Call us at 1st Step Upper Cervical Care Center when you are ready to find out if your spine is in balance - your nerve system depends on it!