More than 15 million Americans suffer from recurring headaches with no obvious cause. For so many in the Columbia, Missouri area, pain pills only provide temporary relief and the headaches come back.
Many of these headaches are at least partially caused by dysfunction in the structures of the upper neck. A condition called cervicogenic headaches. Your head is essentially an eight to ten pound weight balanced on top of the neck. The vertebrae (bones of the spinal column) and discs in the neck bear the weight of the head, while muscles, ligaments, and joints control and limit movement of the neck. Many daily activities result in a position where the head is relatively far out in front of the shoulders and the upper neck is extended or bent backwards. This forward head position greatly increases tension in the muscles on the back of the neck and can also stress or irritate the joints of the neck. Muscle tension and joint irritation in the upper neck can result in pain in the head.
At Family First Chiropractic, we will take a comprehensive history and perform a thorough examination to determine the source of your pain. A plan will be formed specifically for you which may include spinal adjustments, Muscle release therapy on tight muscles in the neck and at the base of the head, and exercises and stretches to restore neck muscle function and posture. Curve restoration will be prescribed using advanced spinal remodeling techniques if we determine you have lost the normal curve of the neck. We may recommend a specific type of pillow if it is determined that improper neck support while sleeping is a source of your pain.
Neck pain is one of the most common reasons people seek chiropractic care. At least 1 in 3 people will have bad neck pain at some point in their life. While the neck itself can be very painful, structures in the neck can also cause pain up into the head or down into the upper back, shoulders, and arms if there is injury or subluxation present. Whiplash injuries are particularly likely to negatively affect the neck. It is often assumed that the soreness, pain, and tightness of a slower speed fender bender will go away soon. However, the collision can alter the function of the neck and lead to worse problems over time as the body tries to stabilize the injured areas. A study performed by Yale University was able to determine that a car need only be traveling 8.2 mph to cause significant spinal damage. In fact, the less damage to the vehicle, the more damage occurs in the spine.
Patients often comment that the examination performed by our doctors is the most thorough they’ve ever received. A thorough exam enables them to determine the exact problem areas of your spine and form a plan of care to restore normal function in your neck. The goal of the plan will be long term neck stability. Spinal adjustments will be used to restore proper function to injured joints. Other therapies may be performed to your muscles, tendons, and ligaments to round out your treatment to provide complete healing while exercises and stretches will enable you to maintain the progress you make through care.
Sooner or later an amazing 8 out of every 10 people in the Columbia area will suffer through an attack of low back pain. Of people who suffer with back pain for two weeks or longer, many will see a chiropractor. Studies have shown that the decision to see a chiropractor is wise. The US Agency for Health Care Policy and Research recently appointed a panel of medical experts who reviewed some 3,900 studies on care for acute low back pain. The panel rejected bedrest, surgery (except rare cases), injections into the back, and all oral prescription drugs (such as antidepressants or steroids). In contrast, they found that spinal adjustments, performed by a chiropractor, “can be helpful for patients with acute low back problems.” For pain, they found over-the-counter medications (aspirin, etc.) worked as well as prescriptions but with fewer side effects.
At Family First Chiropractic in the Village of Cherry Hill in Columbia, effective treatment begins with the most thorough exam in order to determine all the causes of the problem. Spinal adjustments are used to restore proper function to injured or dysfunctional joints. Our doctors provide specific adjustments, and utilize restorative exercises to make sure you don’t suffer needlessly through recurring episodes of back pain.
Carpal Tunnel is a major problem in Columbia residents with lives that involve repetitive motions and computer work. Many Columbia area residents search for a solution for the pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness of carpal tunnel syndrome without results. Columbia chiropractors Dr. David Winarski and Dr. Kelli Winarski are thrilled to offer chiropractic adjustments and muscle release therapies which often permanently resolves cases of carpal tunnel syndrome without medication or surgery.
The nerves carrying signals to and from the entire arm in Columbia carpal tunnel syndrome patients exit the spine in the lower neck. From there they extend down through the shoulder region and down the arm extending and branching out to the tips of the fingers. They pass between muscles and ligaments and through structures which can potentially cause irritation to the nerves in Columbia carpal tunnel syndrome patients. These nerves carry sensory messages as well as muscle- controlling messages.
When a nerve in a carpal tunnel syndrome patient becomes injured or irritated, it can affect whatever the nerve extends to and controls. For example, hitting your funny bone (the ulnar nerve) causes pain, numbness, and tingling not just at your elbow but all the way down to the tips of your fingers. The nerves that extend from your neck to your fingers react the same way to irritation or injury. Pain, tingling, numbness, and muscle weakness can all result from nerve irritation or injury in a Columbia carpal tunnel syndrome patient. There are multiple spots where these nerves can be irritated as they travel from the spine to the tips of the fingers. If a nerve is irritated at or near the spine, it takes less irritation at locations further away from the spine such as at the wrist or in the forearm to affect the nerve and cause symptoms. Thorough examination can reveal the areas where the nerves are being irritated in Columbia’s carpal tunnel syndrome patients.
Healing and stabilizing carpal tunnel syndrome starts with a thorough examination to determine exactly where nerves are being irritated. Then a plan can be formed to reduce nerve irritation. Adjustments of the lower neck decrease joint and nerve irritation where the arm-controlling nerves exit the spine. At Family First Chiropractic, spinal adjustments and muscle release therapies be used to address the areas where muscles are affecting the nerves of the arm and the appropriate extremity adjustments, strengthening exercises, stretches will also be recommended to create the ideal situation for the body to heal the irritated areas causing carpal tunnel syndrome without medication or surgeries.
Though most associate whiplash with car accidents, a variety of falls, tumbles, and sports-related collisions can result in whiplash. The results are often the same. Whiplash can injure the joints of the neck as well as the muscles, ligaments, and tendons that keep the neck stable. Since nerves from the neck extend both up to the head as well as down the entire length of the arms, neck injury can affect a large area of the body. Often the severity of the injury is not immediately obvious since structural changes can take place that result in more severe symptoms years down the road.
The most common symptoms of whiplash include neck pain and tightness, headaches, pain into the shoulders, and numbness or tingling in the hands and fingers. Long term results of whiplash injuries include increased arthritis and decreased range of motion in the neck, carpal tunnel syndrome, and possible chronic neck pain.
Our doctors recommend an examination as soon as possible after a whiplash type of injury. A thorough evaluation will enable him to tell what structures are damaged and in need of treatment. Though hands-on adjusting may not be performed immediately, other therapies such as Activator instrument-assisted adjustments, gentle ART, electric stimulation, and ultrasound may be performed to minimize the damage of the whiplash injury. A comprehensive plan will be formed to ensure your return to full health.
If your whiplash injury is the result of an automobile accident, the supportive staff at Family First Chiropractic will help you take the proper steps to make sure that your health care needs are covered by your insurance, so that you can focus on healing.
Chiropractic care doesn’t treat allergies. So, why do so many people with allergies mention that they see improvement by receiving care in our practice?
It’s Not the Pollen
There are many signs of an allergic reaction. Itchy eyes. Runny nose. Sneezing. Skin rash. More serious reactions can include constricted air passageways, vomiting and even death. All this from a handful of peanuts, an encounter with a cat or microscopic grains of pollen in the air!
If everyone reacted to these common substances, we could fix the blame squarely on the nut, dander, shellfish or pollen. But not everyone reacts.
What is it?
INAPPROPRIATE THREAT – Your nervous system is the master system that orchestrates your immune system, glandular system, respiratory system and every other system that reacts inappropriately to an allergen. Normally, these systems help you respond and adapt to the world around you. But suffering from uncontrollable sneezing around a house cat is probably an inappropriate reaction.
If your nervous system isn’t working right, you don’t work right. So, rather than direct our attention to the countless potential allergens, we locate and reduce the disturbances we find to your nervous system.
A FULL BUCKET – Each of us was born with the capacity to withstand or adapt to stress. If we’re unable to deal with things we eat, breathe or come into contact with it may be because our margin to adapt is used up.
Pretend that this bucket represents your capacity to adapt to the physical, emotional and chemical stresses of life. Every stressful encounter your body faces, fills up your bucket.
If your bucket is already full and you encounter pollen, foods or other chemicals, your bucket overflows. When that happens, people say they’re having an allergic reaction. But what they’re really saying is, “I’ve lost my ability to adapt. My margin is used up.”
Other Conditions Helped
Content Written by Dr. Kelli Winarski | DC, Pediatrics and Pregnancy Certified, ART (Active Release Techniques) Full Body Certified, NBCE, National Board of Chiropractic Examiners Part I-IV & Physical Therapy
Content Reviewed by Dr. Collin Zeugin | DC, NBCE, National Board of Chiropractic Examiners Part I-IV & Physical Therapy
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