2….The Diaphragm and Low Back Pain
3….Why Do Your Children Need to See a Chiropractor?
5.…Detox and Weight Loss Challenge Begins September 10th
6….Hamstring Tests & Stretches
9.…How Meditation Helps Your Immune System Do Its Job
11..Types of Shoulder Pain that Acupuncture Can Relieve
12…Clinic Hours and Services
CHIROPRACTIC 101: – by Dr. Rick Lee
By now most of you have met my son, Dr. Eric Lee, who has joined our practice in late-August. He has been shadowing myself and Larissa to understand the various protocols of the clinic and also meet everyone should I be away or that he can be seen on a day that is convenient for yourself.
One of the questions that I did not anticipate during his introduction was if I was about to retire! Do I really look that old? Hahaha, the definitive answer is “no” to retirement question and please do not answer the latter question 😉. This is not a Masai Ujiri promise of a no trade to DeMar DeRozan. No really, I am not retiring and Dr. Eric will be expanding the hours of the clinic that will make it more convenient for our clients. I am here also in a teaching and training capacity to help ensure that there is a smooth transition for Dr. Eric from his clinic internship to private practice and have him benefit from my 29 years of practice experience. Yes, hard to believe that I have been in this profession for that long, but when you are passionate about something, it really isn’t work.
There has been more work about the benefits of diaphragmatic breathing on helping overcome lower back pain and Dr. Eric will discuss some of those aspects and “how to” in this newsletter.
As we head into he Fall season and Back to School, it’s time to review the knapsack loads and postures. We have handouts in the clinic that help to provide an overview of what is safe versus what can lead to poor mechanics, stress and overload onto our childrens’ spines and nervous systems.
We also discuss the importance of having the spine and nervous system of children checked to ensure proper development.
There is an article about helping you touch your toes by addressing hamstring tightness and how important they are for your own posture. Dr. Deepak Chopra, MD looks at how Meditation can help your immune function and I have reissued the article about how to start practicing meditation for easy reference.
Lastly there is an article about acupuncture and how it can help with various types of shoulder problems.
The summer holidays are over and time to get your health and the health of your family back on track. Remember you are the role model for everyone in your family and how can you support your loved ones if you do not take care of yourself first?
THE DIAPHRAGM AND LOW BACK PAIN – by Dr. Eric Lee
Hello everyone! My name is Dr. Eric Lee and I have officially joined the Bridlewood Chiropractic Centre team. Some of you may have already met me during my orientation and training at the clinic in July and August. As my first contribution to the newsletter I will be discussing the influence that the diaphragm has on the lower back.
While most people know that the diaphragm is important for breathing, many people are unaware of the effect it can have on the low back. Studies have shown that dysfunction of the diaphragm can lead to low back or neck pain, altered respiration, and changes in trunk stabilization and proprioception (the awareness of body position in space).
The diaphragm is a thin sheath of muscle that separates the chest cavity from the abdomen and has attachments to the lumbar spine, ribs, and sternum. Due to its attachment to the lumbar spine, it plays a role in the stabilization of the low back during movement. When there is too much dynamic demand on the diaphragm (high breathing rate, prolonged periods of carrying excess weight), the muscle begins to fatigue. In a 2013 study, Janssens et al. found that individuals with low back pain had more weakness and fatigue of their diaphragm than healthy controls. Another study from 2013 by Vostatek found that when individuals with chronic low back pain attempt to perform movements, their diaphragm does not activate as much as in a healthy population. This decreased activation causes the lumbar spine to be less stable, which leads to increased injury risk.
The diaphragm can also indirectly influence the muscles of the neck. A 2015 study by Janssens et al. found that coaching someone through diaphragmatic breathing (as opposed to chest breathing) can help with their postural control and trunk proprioception. This breathing technique helps to take strain off of what are called the accessory respiratory muscles (namely the upper trapezius, scalenes, and SCM). These neck muscles assist with elevation of the ribcage during breathing if the diaphragm is unable to meet the respiratory demands (e.g. decreased diaphragm activation, periods of heavy breathing such as prolonged exercise) and can become quite tight and painful if overworked.
Diaphragmatic Breathing Technique
A good way to start practicing diaphragmatic breathing is to:
- Lie on your back with your head supported and a pillow under your knees to support your legs.
- Place one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
- Breathe in slowly through your nose and let your stomach rise against your hand. The hand on your chest should not move.
- Exhale slowly through your mouth as you let your stomach fall.
It may feel a bit unusual at first, but as this becomes more natural you can progress to trying it while seated and then standing.
- Bordoni B, Zanier E. Anatomic connections of the diaphragm: influence of respiration on the body system. Journal of multidisciplinary healthcare. 2013;6:281.
- Sagrillo LM, Frigo LF. The respiratory diaphragm in osteopathic vision: a literature review. Manual Therapy, Posturology & Rehabilitation Journal. 2016 Dec 30;14:414.
WHY DO YOUR CHILDREN NEED TO SEE A CHIROPRACTOR? – by Dr. Derek Kasten (2014)
We are get asked why many parents take their children to a Chiropractor. The answer is simple, children have spines and a nervous system just like adults and we want to make sure they are taking good care of it especially during the developmental years.
The Nervous System Controls Everything
The central nervous system consists of the brain and the spinal cord. From the spinal cord are nerves that go to every organ, gland, tissue, muscle and cell of the body. The nervous system is set up much like a big fuse box, and if there is a “blown fuse” a child could react with constipation, colic, bed wetting, ear infections, torticollis, fussiness, trouble sleeping, reflux and so on. Pediatric chiropractors can help with many childhood conditions, but our focus is not on treating disease or disorders. Quite the opposite, our focus is on allowing the nervous system to function without interference or to remove the “blown fuse” known as a Subluxation.
A Chiropractor will find and correct Subluxation with a safe and specific adjustment.
How Do You Want Your Tree To Grow?
The integrity and function of the nervous system is very important for proper growth and development, especially for children. So, it is very important that the spine, which protects the nervous system, is moving properly and in proper alignment. If the spine is misaligned it will cause a “blown fuse” and lead to many health issues. Think about a tree that is growing in your back yard. We want that tree to grow nice and straight so it can be strong and as healthy as possible. If we help the tree grow correctly from early on, it is much easier then to try and correct a tree that has grown “crooked” for 20 years. The idea is that by being proactive with children and allowing their spine and nervous system to grow properly early on we are preventing issues and the need to correct spinal misalignments later on in life.
How Do Children Get “Blown Fuses”?
Children unfortunately are over stressed much more than ever before. The trauma that they encounter at an early age or even before they are born such as intrauterine constraints, birth trauma, malpositioning (breech), c-section, birth intervention (forceps/vacuum suction) and even falls are enough force to shift the spine out of alignment. Furthermore, a child that encounters chemical stress (antibiotics, medication, diet) and emotional stress (fear) will also cause a protective (fight/flight) response or tension within the musculature that supports the spine. These tense muscles can also misalign the spine and cause Subluxation.
Bottom line: When a child has been through trauma and the spine becomes misaligned and Subluxated (blown fuse) it needs to be corrected with safe and effective chiropractic adjustments. If the “blown fuse” is not removed, the spine will continue to grow “crooked” and the Subluxation will continue to cause health challenges such as constipation, colic, bed wetting, ear infections, torticollis, fussiness, trouble sleeping, reflux. Later on in life it can create trouble with focus, behavior, mood, hyperactivity, digestion, asthma, allergies, headaches and sensory integration.
Top 5 Reasons To Take Your Child To A Chiropractor
- To promote proper growth and development and to limit health challenges such as issues with nursing and reflux.
- To allow a child’s nervous system and spine to grow optimally and without interference. To reduce ear infections, bed wetting, asthma and allergies.
- To improve a child’s immune system and digestive health and to limit colic and constipation.
- To encourage nerve and brain development (neural plasticity). To promote proper perception and awareness preventing labels such as ADHD, Sensory Integration Disorder and other neurodevelopmental disorders.
- To be proactive about your child’s overall health and wellbeing which will limit and support them through colds and infections and allow them to meet their optimal potential.
The health and happiness of your child is the most important thing. Chiropractic care has been proven to be safe and effective at improving the wellbeing and happiness of children.
Just start talking to other mothers and families that have seen the benefits of chiropractic care. The positive results are endless.
Chiropractic care along with proper lifestyle choices are the foundation for proper growth, development, health and happiness.
DETOX & WEIGHT LOSS CHALLENGE BEGINS SEPTEMBER 10TH
Here is what we are faced with in Canada regarding obesity, fatigue and stress:
– 6 million Canadians live with clinical obesity.
– Currently 1 in 10 children, and 1 in 4 adults are obese.
– In 2010, obesity cost Canadians over $6 billion dollars.
*Source – Canadian Obesity Network
– 60% of Canadians feel tired ‘all the time.’
– 30% of Canadians get fewer than 6 hours of sleep per night.
– 40% of Canadian children are not getting enough sleep.
*Sources – World Association of Sleep Medicine and CBC Health
– In 2014, 6.7 million Canadians ages 15 and older, reported that their daily stress was ‘quite a bit’ or ‘extremely stressful.’
*Source – Stats Can
In order to address these challenges, we must start from the inside-out. Of course, it is difficult to try to eat properly all of the time or we wouldn’t have this nation-wide problem, but you know my mantra: “What are you doing 80-90% of the time? Because this is what will form your Health”.
This Detox and Keto program that I am introducing this month will help to kick-start that change. This is the chemical stress (nutrition and toxicity) that affects our bodies and minds. It takes 21 days to create a habit, so we have implemented a 6-week challenge with an accelerated aspect at the beginning (for those who are a little more disciplined and want faster results) and then a transition into the regular program for lifestyle.
I have been using this program for 12 years in my personal life and also for my clients. It has been an amazing adjunct with what I do as a Health Care Practitioner and we have seen some incredible health and physical transformations! We look forward to helping you achieve your own health goals with this program.
The cost for the program is only the cost of the products. I will be coaching you throughout the program and there is a 30-day money back guarantee if you are not satisfied.
Contact Larissa or myself and we will get you started on this program. Please call at 416-756-3833 or email me at email@example.com and type DETOX in the subject line.
I am having an information session over a videoconference line (there is a phone only option) on
Thursday September 6th at 7:30 pm ET for 30 minutes and another one on
Tuesday September 11th at 7:30 pm ET.
Give yourself about 10 minutes to try and get on as it may have to load onto your computer or phone. Also have a webcam, along with a microphone and headphones to get the most out of the presentation.
- Just copy this site below and paste it into your url. It is a Zoom Conference meeting:
- You can also just Google “Zoom” and click onto “Join Meeting” and then type in the Meeting Room# “713 324 5990”.
- Or you can join by phone as well:
Canada: +1 647 558 0588
US: +1 669 900 6833 or +1 646 558 8656
Meeting ID: 713 324 5990
HAMSTRING TESTS AND CAUSES OF POSTURAL IMBALANCES – BY Mark Wong, PT at http://www.posturedirect.com
Your hamstring muscles are an important part of the kinetic chain that can affect posture, pelvic and lower back mechanics, as well as performance. Here is an article that I found online to test tight hamstrings and in the next newsletter the stretches to do (the article is too large) to correct this.
“Do you have tight hamstrings?”
- Lie down on your back.
- Bring your hip to 90 degrees flexion.
- (Hold the back of the knee)
- Whilst keeping your toes pointed, try to straighten your leg as much as possible.
- Keep the other leg flat on the ground to maintain an arch in your lower back.
- If you can not straighten your knee, then you have tight hamstrings.
What causes tight hamstrings?
If I were to pick the most common cause that I see in my patients, it would definitely have to be…
Sitting (… for way too long!)
Most of us will tend to sit a slouched state which places the pelvis in a posterior pelvic tilt.
This in turn will place the hamstrings in the shortened position that will lead to tight(er) hamstrings.
Why should you stretch your hamstrings?
- a) Leads to postural issues
As mentioned above, tight hamstrings can pull your pelvis into a posterior tilt.
This is where the pelvis rotates backwards and can lead to all kinds of issues with your posture.
Which leads to the:
- b) Inability to maintain a neutral spine
Since the pelvis is in a sub-optimal position, it will be very difficult for the lower back to achieve neutral spine.
This can lead to…
- c) Back pain
People with tight hamstrings will tend to bend their lower back particularly during activities such as sitting, bending forwards and lifting from floor (… which we all do on a daily basis).
This can increase the result in injuries such as disc bulges, muscular strains, joint damage and nerve issues.
- d) Recurring hamstring strains
Tight muscles will tend to strain more easily, more severely and more frequently!
Types of postures with tight hamstrings:
- Posterior pelvic tilt
- Sway back posture
- Flat back posture
The hamstring muscle group mainly consists of 3 different individual muscles:
- Biceps femoris
- (Adductor magnus/Short head biceps)
As the hamstring muscle group contains more than just 1 muscle, I have divided the hamstring stretches by location of stretch.
Make sure you are stretching all of the hamstring muscle group!
Note: In the next Newsletter we will review the Hamstring Stretches
HOW MEDITATION HELPS YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM DO ITS JOB – by Deepak Chopra, M.D. online at http://www.chopra.com
Your immune system is one of the most critical, and most fascinating, aspects of the mind-body connection. For a long time, the ability of immune cells to attack invading disease organisms was considered purely physical, even though the mechanism was not completely understood.
Then, in the ‘80s it was discovered that the immune system is highly intelligent; it became known as “a floating brain” because of the ability of immune cells to participate in the chemical messages sent by the brain throughout the body. This means that your thoughts, moods, sensations, and expectations are transmitted to your immune cells. When you meditate, these messages change in important ways.
Consider these research findings that offer very good news for anyone who mediates.
- Since your immune system responds to both negative and positive thoughts, meditation creates a positive mental environment for the immune system to flourish. One study showed a reduction of pro-inflammatory gene expression in older adults.
- A UCLA study shows that HIV positive patients who practice mindful meditation slow down the reduction of their CD-4 cell count. These are the immune cells that are associated with keeping the virus from propagating.
- Meditation boosts antibodies. A recent study confirmed that, after being given weekly meditation training for 8 weeks, 48 biotech workers had significantly higher levels of antibodies than the control group (coworkers who didn’t meditate) as well as higher levels than before the study.
- Meditation stimulates immune system brain-function regions. Mindfulness meditation has shown increases in electrical activity in the prefrontal cortex, the right anterior insula, and right hippocampus, all parts that control positive emotions, awareness, and anxiety. These are also the areas of the brain that act as a command center for your immune system. When stimulated, they make the immune system function more effectively.
These findings bring into focus a clear message: Your response to potential illness, as managed by the immune system, improves with meditation. This is in keeping with another strong message. Being susceptible to chronic disorders like type-2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and high blood pressure, conditions that are not the result of invading microbes, is also reduced through meditation. The entire mind-body system is brought into a natural state of balance, the key to what I’ve called the higher health.
Medical science proceeds through findings that provide reliable data, and we actively support such research at the Chopra Center. But your lifestyle isn’t a scientific experiment, of course, so what kind of program can you adopt that focuses specifically on preventing illness, especially in winter?
- Keep up regular meditation morning and evening.
- Reduce and avoid stress, since the immune system is easily compromised when stress hormones surge.
- Seriously address low-level chronic stresses that may be present at home or work. You are not helping your immune status by putting up with constant “minor” stress.
- Get adequate sleep, which is directly connected to brain function and hormone levels.
- Wash your hands several times a day, and always after direct contact with someone else’s skin. Doctors who make sure to wash their hands after seeing every patient reduce hospital-borne infections by more than 50 percent.
Enhance these basic steps by following seasonal Ayurvedic recommendations, too. The ancient wisdom of Ayurveda is especially appropriate when looking at how foods, herbs, massage, and other applications lead to perfect balance. Yet, at the very core is meditation—the most important and powerful way to strengthen every aspect of the mind-body connection.
Benefits of Daily Meditation – by Mackenzie Lu (2016) from Longevity.media online
Try Meditation for Yourself (this last excerpt from previous newsletter)
There are too many types of meditation to mention here. But, there is one type of very powerful meditation you can learn now, today and we are going to give you that bonus and teach you. So, can this really give you all the benefits that we’ve covered here if it’s really that simple? Yes. Why? Because less is more, period. With meditation you must keep this in mind.
When you are doing an activity like washing dishes or vacuuming or even walking, engulf yourself in that process. Stay there in the now. If you have thoughts let them pass through without judgement. Repeat how good it feels or the fact you can hear the wind or birds. No matter how corny it seems, it’s a way to keep your mind in one place, (where you are and no where else). The benefits we described come about when you develop the skill of being in the moment. You can do this for three straight months only three to four days a week and you will see a marked difference in being able to stave off distraction!
The second phase you can take a Hatha yoga class. Yoga was simply a way to deal with advanced meditation poses without falling asleep and was later developed into a more complex activity for health. This is the perfect second phase so you can begin to really enjoy the benefits of daily meditation. If you physically can’t participate in yoga, you can research other more complex meditation phases and you are guaranteed to see how mindfulness has honed your ability straight away. Meditation is a life-enhancing activity you can enjoy for many years.
TYPES OF SHOULDER PAIN THAT ACUPUNCTURE TREATMENT CAN RELIEVE
The shoulder is an incredibly flexible joint with an extraordinary range of motion. This movement may be severely hampered by several conditions that may also lead to shoulder pain. These conditions include rotator cuff tendonitis, osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder (periarthritis or adhesive capsulitis), impingement syndromes and bursitis. Its relatively poor blood supply means that the shoulder takes a rather long time to heal from injury.
This is usually caused by repetitive motion, injury, and impingement syndrome leading to inflammation. The inflammation is in the small sacs (bursa) filled with fluid that cushions the joint. The symptoms include joint stiffness, swelling and redness, pain with overhead activities, and pain while sleeping at night.
Rotator Cuff Tendinitis
The rotator cuff comprises the four muscles and associated tendons in and around the shoulder. Rotator cuff tendinitis is the swelling and inflammation of the tendons. Overuse as in tennis and throwing sports, or strenuous overhead lifting can cause this condition. The symptoms include pain when at rest or at night (worse when lying on the affected shoulder) and weakness when lifting and turning your arm.
Shoulder impingement syndrome
This is a combination of shoulder bursitis and rotator cuff tendinitis. The swelling and inflammation of the bursa and tendons cause the space of the shoulder joint to narrow. This leads to pain and restricted movement.
This can occur when there is thickening or tightening of the capsule of connective tissue around the bones, ligaments, and tendons of the shoulder. The associated inflammation causes restricted range of motion and severe pain. Usually, there is no known cause, but those at increased risk include people with neck injuries and diabetes; and those who have had shoulder or open heart surgery.
Treatment with Acupuncture
Upon assessment of each unique case, the acupuncturist may decide to use points at the affected area (local) or away from the area (distal) for the insertion of needles. These trigger points would be along acupuncture meridians that transverse the painful part of the body. From an acupuncture standpoint, pain results from a blockage in the meridian, and properly applied acupuncture can remove those blockages.
In Chinese medicine it is thought that Qi and blood are two healing and regenerative forces in the body. Acupuncture promotes the circulation of both Qi and blood, which in turn stops pain. So simply put, acupuncture treats shoulder pain by stimulating the area to improve Qi and blood flow, relaxing the muscles and promoting healing.
Any medical practitioner will tell you that when it comes to shoulder injuries and pain, prevention is the best possible medicine. But when you are unfortunately dealing with an injured shoulder and the related discomfort, acupuncture is a reliable method of getting relief.
If you’re reading this newsletter online, then of course this is NOT news, however for those who want to find out more about our clinic and what we do, this is a great reference. It is also good for those who have family members or friends who want to learn more about what Chiropractic is and what it is not. Look us up on the web and our current newsletter along with future newsletters, all will be available online.
Dr. Rick & Dr. Eric
Monday 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Wednesday 10:00 am – 12:00 pm 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Friday 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Saturday 9:00 am – 12:00 pm (beginning in late September)*NEW
Desmond Fan, RMT
Please call Larissa at 416-756-3833 to arrange an appointment. Des is now retired as a Paramedic and he has opened more hours during the week.
We also offer customized orthotics, therapeutic massage, acupuncture, computerized nerve scans and health & wellness workshops