Step. Ouch. Step. Ouch. Step. Ouch.
Running is one of the most popular forms of exercise, and offers many benefits. It can be done anywhere, it tones the lower body, and it burns a ton of calories. Pounding the pavement over time, however, can result in injuries to the knees, ankles, and hips.
Whether you run a few miles a week to keep the extra pounds off, or hoof it in several marathons a year, there is unfortunately a good chance you will get hurt at some point.
The first step to recovery if you injure yourself running is to give your body time to heal. A visit to the doctor, ice packs, and over the counter pain medication are all ways to treat an injury. However, one of the best ways runners can treat their injuries is by visiting a chiropractor.
If you are dealing with a running injury and think a chiropractor may be able to help you get back on your feet with less pain, you are most likely correct. Here are four important things to know about chiropractors and how runners can benefit from chiropractic care:
Chiropractors work on more than necks and backs
It's a common misconception that a chiropractor's sole purpose is to adjust their patients' necks and backs. The entire body can benefit from a chiropractic manipulation. For example, the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) states that knee pain is the most common running injury.
Chiropractors are often able to work with an injured knee and bring about a positive outcome. Strains, sprains, and other trauma to your body's joints can be treated by a chiropractor. Soft tissue around the joints benefit from chiropractic treatment, which can greatly ease an injury to the ankle, knee, or hip.
Chiropractic promotes quicker healing of the injured area
From increasing blood flow to the hurt area to breaking up restrictions with manual manipulation, chiropractic treatment helps the body heal itself. Chiropractors view the body in its entirety, and may use manipulations and adjustments on other parts of the body to stimulate healing of the afflicted area.
Chiropractors assist in pain management
Running injuries can often cause great pain that lasts for weeks. Visiting a chiropractor can help reduce the severity of the pain and shorten the amount of time you experience pain. This is an especially attractive benefit for those who avoid taking medicine. Chiropractic care helps manage the discomfort and soreness associated with the injury, allowing the patient to rely less on drugs.
Chiropractic reduces the risk of getting re-injured
A common reason runners end up hurt is their bodies had something "out of whack"; in the first place. Since chiropractors take the wellness of the body as a whole into consideration, they often work with runners to minimize the chance of re-injuring themselves or suffering a different injury. By making certain an individual's body is in alignment and functioning properly, a chiropractor can help the runner feel comfortable moving back into the routine of running.
Running is a great form of exercise and stress relief, and many people run for years without incident. However, it’s vital to take steps up front to minimize the chances of getting hurt, including choosing proper shoes, stretching beforehand, and avoiding overexertion.
If, however, you feel a twist, pop, or crack as you are out for your morning run or finishing your half marathon, know there are chiropractic treatment options available to you that will decrease pain, healing time, and the risk of re-injury. Just pick up the phone and give us a call. We’re here to help!
We always eat our vegetables, drink our kale smoothies, and tear through a bag of fruit on a daily basis, right? Uh, sure, whatever.
The truth is most Americans are busy and make dubious dietary choices. Meat heavy, overly processed, and vegetable skimpy most like describes our meals. Some of us try to counterbalance our imperfect eating choices by taking vitamin supplements to help fuel our bodies with the proper nutrients.
Roughly half the U.S. population takes some form of vitamin supplements. We understand vitamins and minerals help protect our muscles, bones, and joints, keeps our skin and hair healthy, and boosts our immune system.
Choosing a supplement regimen seems like a healthy trend, because of our perception they are good for us. How accurate is that, really?
The answer depends on the type of supplements you choose, as they vary widely from one brand to the next, and labels don't necessarily give insight as to their quality. A good standard of practice is to choose whole food vitamins over synthetic whenever possible.
Why is that? Here are a few points to remember about whole food vs. synthetic vitamins.
Like processed foods, synthetic vitamins are not naturally occurring. Whole food vitamins operate on the principle that natural is easier for the body to absorb and use, so it ends up offering greater benefits. A synthetic multivitamin may show everything you think you need on the label, but if your body isn't absorbing it, then taking it does little good.
Another point is that natural supplements tend to be easier to absorb. Vitamins and minerals are absorbed by the body in complex ways, often taking one type of mineral for the other to be digested. Whole food vitamins are real foods in their entirety, supplying the body's need for the vitamins we understand as well as the secondary ingredients that make up the food. Conversely, synthetic vitamins isolate each separate vitamin, so the overall result is less effective.
Finally, taking isolated nutrients can actually cause deficiencies. As shocking as this may sound to those of us who religiously pop extra vitamin C before we board a packed plane, it's true.
When an isolated vitamin or mineral enters the body, it still demands other nutrients to be present in order to be digested and utilized. This requirement can pull those nutrients out of the body's reserves, which, over time, can cause a deficiency of completely different vitamins. Whole food vitamins, on the other hand, don't cause this, because everything they need to be used by the body is included, since it is a natural food.
If you use supplements to ensure you meet your dietary requirements, take a long look at the labels, and do your own research on the type of vitamins in your medicine cabinet. If they are synthetic, think about making a change to whole food vitamins for greater health benefits.
And remember that real food is best. No supplement, no matter how high quality or natural, beats eating a healthy variety of high quality organic foods. If your current diet is lacking in healthy, fresh foods, set a goal to add a few to your meals over the next few weeks.
Your body is the only one you will ever have, so it's vital to take care of it. Empower yourself to stay strong and healthy longer by committing to eating healthy and exercising. If you decide to take supplements, choose the whole food options, and keep in mind they are no substitute for nutrient rich eating.
An ankle can be injured as glamorously as falling off a $400 platform stiletto heel, stepping off a Parisian curb, or as mundanely as tripping over a toy truck, or falling over a rock on your way to the mailbox. No matter the cause, ankle injuries are painful and problematic, and cause recurring problems if left untreated.
The poor ankle sure has it rough. It supports a person's entire body weight, twists and turns many times a day, and maintains proper balance. This heavy responsibility takes its toll. Emergency rooms treat approximately one million patients ever year for ankle injuries.
Ankles are technically "the joint where the foot joins the leg." In reality, there are more moving parts involved than that simplified definition allows. Multiple bones and two separate joints actually converge in the ankle area, which increases the chance of an ankle injury.
More than one injury commonly affects the ankle:
When you roll your ankle outward, the movement damages the ligaments on the outside of the ankle. This is a common sports injury and, unfortunately, once you have sprained your ankle it's more likely to recur. Up to half of the people who suffer from a sprained ankle will sprain it again.
There are two tendons in the ankle that are commonly strained, usually overstretching from overuse or trauma.
This injury happens when one or more of the three bones in the ankle is injured. While less common than a sprain or strain, a fractured ankle may also involve damaged ligaments and require surgery.
Many instances of ankle injuries are avoidable. Be sure to wear proper shoes when exercising or participating in sports, avoid uneven walking surfaces, and keep stairways and floors in your home clear of clutter
And, ladies, avoid the really high heels. We know, we know, they are just so cute! :-)
Even with ankle-protecting precautions, you still may end up on your rump in the grass nursing your swollen ankle. What should you do if you injure your ankle? There are several forms of treatment for an ankle injury depending on its severity.
Rest and ice: For mild injuries, stay off your ankle and use ice packs to reduce the swelling. Rest allows the injured area to heal faster.
Visit a doctor: If you experience severe pain, swelling, and are unable to put weight on your ankle, see a doctor, as some ankle injuries grow worse without treatment. Injuries may require a brace, cast, or even surgery.
See a chiropractor: Patients frequently see strongly positive results in ankle injuries from a series of chiropractic treatments. Chiropractors understand the way the ankle is built, and use chiropractic adjustments to reduce pain and inflammation and promote faster healing
Exercise rehab: Once you are healed, it's vital to build up the ankle's strength to avoid re-injury. Your chiropractor can lay out an exercise routine that you can employ into your regular workouts that will improve your balance and increase mobility. Performing these moves helps dramatically decrease dealing with this again down the road.
Ankle injuries are common and, whether or not you maintain an active lifestyle, you may end up suffering from one. By visiting a chiropractor on the front end, you can better plan a course of treatment that will heal your ankle quickly, reduce the pain effectively, and minimize the chance of a recurrence.
How can a body part you have probably never heard of hurt so BAD? This is a common question we hear from individuals suffering from sacroiliac joint pain.
The joint is formed by the sacrum and the ilium where they meet on either side of the lower back, with the purpose of connecting the spine to the pelvis. This small joint is one of the most durable parts of the human body, and it is responsible for a big job.
The unassuming little sacroiliac joint withstands the pressure of the upper body's weight pushing down on it, as well as pressure from the pelvis. It's basically the cushion between the torso and the legs. As such, it handles force from pretty much every angle.
While immensely strong and durable, this joint is not indestructible. Sacroiliac joint pain usually crops up as lower back pain, or pain in the legs or buttocks.
Weakness in these areas may also be present. The typical culprits in causing the sacroiliac joint to exhibit pain are traumatic injuries to the lower back, but more frequently develops over a longer period of time.
Sacroiliac joint pain is often misdiagnosed as soft tissue issues instead of the joint itself. Doctors may rule out other medical conditions before settling on a diagnosis that includes a sacroiliac joint problem.
If you have suffered an injury, a degenerative disease, or otherwise damaged the sacroiliac joint, there are treatments available to help manage pain, promote healing, and lessen the chances of recurrence. Here are a four helpful guidelines to assist in effectively handling sacroiliac joint pain.
First, rest and ice the area. Avoid exaggerated movements of your lower back in order to relieve some of the body's pressure on the sacroiliac joint. Also apply ice wrapped in a towel periodically to soothe the area and minimize the pain.
A second way to handle sacroiliac pain is with therapeutic massage. Tightness around the joint is a common cause of discomfort and pain. Professional massage serves to loosen and relax the lower back, buttocks, and leg areas, offering relief from pain.
Third, consider chiropractic and seeing a chiropractor. Chiropractic treatment, known as adjustments, not only provides great options for pain relief but also helps promote the healing process of this joint.
A chiropractor is specifically trained to guide you through several phases of care. They don’t focus just on pain relief but are primarily interested in helping you fix the problem.
They’re also very well trained in rehabilitation of the spine. This approach will help loosen the muscles surrounding the joint as well as strengthen them. This will decrease the risk of pain returning down the road.
Finally, in very rare cases, doctors will choose to apply an injection to the area to alleviate pain and inflamed tissue. Obviously, the injection won’t fix the problem but may give the patient relief temporarily. Surgery is rarely a viable option.
If you show symptoms of sacroiliac pain, it's important to see a Doctor of Chiropractic so he or she can perform tests to correctly diagnose your condition. It could very well be another type of lower back problem. So quit suffering and give us a call!
Dr. Andy Johnson