June 19th, 2017 by Mark Hendry, D.C.
The classic allopathic approach initially is a course of steroids or non steroidal anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxants, and pain. After these have failed to reduce the symptoms for a significant bulging or herniated disks (greater than 3-4 mm) a referral for an epidural steroid injection from a pain management specialist may be the next step. Finally their last option in many cases a discectomy with a laminectomy to open up the neural canal and take the pressure off the nerve. The problem with this option is now we have removed a chunk of the cartilage which weakens the structural system and like trimming the bubble off your car tire, the tire will go flat over time.
Another option is a form of specialized traction called Decompression therapy. The patient is placed on a comfortable table while an intermittent tractional force is applied via a computerized head at a specific angle, depending on the level of the disk and the appropriate weight designed to create a negative pressure within the disk to suck it in away from the neural structures. We have been treating with this device here at Frostwood Chiropractic for over 10 years with excellent success. The intermittent nature of the force allows for a pumping effect, to bring healing blood flow from the vertebral body, while allowing for comfortable muscular stresses. What does this mean? It means its super comfortable?
We have had great success with radiating arm pain, numbness, tingling and weakness in the arm or hand caused by disks bulging or herniated in the cervical spine. We have treated hundreds of patients with sciatic pain radiating down the posterior and lateral leg extending as far as the foot as well as pain and/or numbness radiating down the front of the thigh, or along the femoral nerve. Back pain conditions that use to respond to Chiropractic manipulation but no longer does many times will adjust once the compressional affect has been neutralized. Nerve pain is not to be played with and should be considered a very serious condition. The longer it remains the more difficult it is to correct and the more threat to the nerve it involves. This is a tremendous, very conservative, non-invasive and much less expensive approach to significant disk problems.
May 23rd, 2017 by Mark Hendry, D.C.
I just wanted to give a little insight as to the state of mind we are trying to attain from our patients to optimize the healing process. If you’re thinking, ” Does this guy think he’s a clinical Psychologist.” The answer to this question is no! But, after treating thousands of patients over the last 26 years I do realize the type of person that heals fast and the thinking and actions that slow or inhibit the process. Many times people have let their condition go on for many months till the condition forces you to deal with it. Whether its just not taking the time to address the condition, denial of a problem, or the old “I thought it was going to go away”. By the time they come in, its been several months or years and they may be afraid something bad is wrong with them. So fear or its little brother worry has come into their mind. Both are a stress to your mind which trickles down through your neuroendocrine system causing excessive tension and tightness into your musculoskeletal system. If you have a problem, this just makes it worse.
Here at Frostwood Chiropractic our first job is to take the fear and worry out of your mind by doing a thorough exam and diagnosing the nature of your condition. Once you know the nature of the condition and your worse fears are not realized, all the tension begins to come out of your body and mind. At times my patients are putting their body and mind through so much work stress that their body starts to shut them down. It has taken them into a state of dis-ease. We will show you exactly what is causing your symptoms through some diagnostic testing and give you an approach to correction of the condition. We even show you films (X-rays) of a similar case we have helped in the past. The next step is having your first adjustment. It is explained thoroughly, what the doctor needs to do to restore the condition from that state of dis-ease. This is usually very comfortable and many times there is some degree of pain relief with the first treatment. Each visit will be pleasurable. You will receive therapies that reduce the symptoms and prepare the tissues and joints for the adjustment. You will be treated with a smile and a happy face because we are blessed that you have asked for our help.
The next step is to get you to focus your thoughts and actions into helping correct the problem. Many times you have created your own problem through inactivity, too much sitting at work, deconditioning and resulting loss or functional motion. Many patients try to play to get in shape instead of getting in shape to play. These weekend warriors stress joints and muscles without preparing them for the stresses of the playing. Once a week softball guy or pickup basketball guy are common examples. Sometimes they have gotten overweight and the stress on your back or joints is too much for your body to overcome. Whatever the nature of the condition, this must be brought into your awareness so you can give mindful attention and take action to help yourself. Taking control over your thoughts and following them with the proper daily actions and then feeling the results of these actions propel you into an empowered state of mind where you take control of your healing. You can do it! And we can show you how.
May 9th, 2017 by Mark Hendry, D.C.
Most patients come into a doctor’s office with some sort of abnormal symptom that have been going on a long time. We all expect a state of dis-ease to heal itself and many times, over a period of days, you will start feeling better. The innate nature of the human body is to attain a state of homeostasis. A lot of patients are looking for a quick fix which is possible if the condition has been there for a short amount of time. But if you keep putting off taking care of that check engine light on your car, sometimes you end up with a bigger problem than it should have been. Of course, what keeps people from coming into see the doctor? Many times it is the fear of finding out its something bad, or fear of having to have to do something to help themselves like watching their diet or exercise. Its much easier to take a pill to get rid of the symptoms than to actually get to the root of the underlying condition. But covering up a symptom for example with non steroidal anti-inflammatories rarely get rid of a condition that has become chronic (more than one month) and may cause a whole other problem in the process. In fact it is like putting a piece of duct tape over the engine light.
Here at Frostwood Chiropractic our primary goal is to first get rid of your fear! We take a lot of time to find out what is causing your symptoms and give you a game plan. We take your body back to a state of at-ease and teach you how to stay healthy once we get you there. Fear and health are like oxymorons. They can’t occupy the same space within your body. We will do a diagnostic test to explain your condition. We send out for X-rays on almost every patient. MRIs are second level exams that may show injury to the disk, or damage to the rotator cuff, that can’t be visualized by the X-ray. The most important thing is we don’t guess at your health or condition and you and myself the doctor, knows exactly the nature of the problem. If you’ve had a condition for several weeks, months or even years there is likely something significant there to be addressed.
The next step is to develop an approach or game plan for correcting the problem. In the spine, the shoulder, and most joints, there is usually some dysfunction that is preventing motion. The joint is injured and the muscles around the joint, whether the spine or shoulder go into lock down mode to limit any damaging motions. The process of fixing the problem is always reducing the inflammation, restoring the joint and musculature to its normal range of motion, and allowing for some healing time. Next step is strengthening the area sufficiently to get a nice balance to the joint structure. When certain muscles compensate for weak muscles it makes them more prone to injury. Yes we will ask you to do some stretching and strengthening at home to encourage a speedier and more thorough condition but also to teach you how to take care of yourself for the long run. We can live 90-100+ years if you are so blessed but accruing health problems can make the golden years not so golden. We do run into conditions that have progressed beyond our ability to help you heal. In 26 years of practice I have met some of the best doctors in Houston. We will do our best to get you the appropriate care. When you look back on your worse fears, they are never as bad as you anticipated.
They were False Expectations Appearing Real!
May 3rd, 2017 by Mark Hendry, D.C.
One of the most common causes of recurrent lower back pain and stiffness as well as sciatica is an anatomical short leg. The patient will talk about having lower back pain and stiffness almost always on the same side of the body every time. They have no history of trauma but have been suffering from the same complaint ever since high school. The condition seems to get more significant as they age complaining the exacerbation last longer and intensifies in severity per occurrence as they age. Many times they will have been to a Chiropractor, who on examination, will mention a short leg. The patient may have wear on the bottom or their jean pant leg on the short leg side or wear on the outside heal of the short leg side. They may have been told that they have a scoliosis. If they are a runner they will have recurrent Ilio-tibial band discomfort on the long leg side or recurrent bursitis. They may have even started developing medial knee pain or bunions as a result of the foot compensation and resulting pronation.
On X-ray exam you will see un-leveling of the pelvis and femur heads. The spine will either lean into the curve causing scoliosis formation on large deficiencies or compensatory leaning away from the short side both of which will cause disk wedging and premature wear of the lower lumbar disk and arthritic changes as a result. The patient presents with neck and upper back symptoms as well due the leaning tower of Pisa affect. IF the base of the spine is not level there will be stresses all up above which can cause recurrent neck and upper back pain as a result.
The answer can be as easy as leveling the pelvis with a shoe insert and/or an orthotic as well as restoring the function to the spine caused by the imbalance. Here at Frostwood Chiropractic we take films of the spine prior to treatment to know the condition of the spine we are treating. We measure the pelvic, and femur heights using the films so we know the height or the lift for the shoe. The arches of the feet are also evaluated due to un-leveling that can occur if one arch has fallen as a result of the imbalance. If you keep going to your Chiropractor and the same problem on the same side recurs maybe ask about this type of evaluation. Chronic pain can lead to expensive steroid injections or even surgery if not treated appropriately.
July 16th, 2012 by Christopher Freytag, D.C.
So you’ve just completed a hard workout or you’ve just finished a big day working in the yard. Now to relax you just want to get in the hot tub or put a couple heat packs on your body and soak it in. Sounds good right? But is it the best thing for your body? NO.
Think about a baseball pitcher. After he has thrown a big game, what do they do with his arm? They ice it down. Why? He has just physically stressed his arm and shoulder. The same thing you do with a workout or with any other increased physical activity like yard work. When you stress a muscle there are micro tears that occur within the muscle. This stress and these tears create inflammation. The best thing to naturally slow and minimize inflammation is ice. Heat will do nothing but make the inflammation worse. Large whirlpool baths that athletes use are filled with cold water, not hot. All for the purpose of reducing inflammation after a hard workout.
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