Friday, July 6, 2007

Whipping Whiplash with Chiropractic Care

Multiple Studies Confirm Positive Outcomes of Chiropractic Care for Whiplash Injuries

CARMICHAEL, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (, a not-for-profit organization, points to four published research studies which validate that chiropractic care provides significant, ongoing relief for whiplash. Whiplash is defined as an injury to the cervical spine caused by an abrupt jerking motion of the head, backward or forward, often occurring from rear on-set automobile accidents and amusement rides or the result of falls, accidents and sporting activities.
“Nearly one out of 15 adult Americans suffers from the annoying and sometimes debilitating long-term effects of whiplash injury, usually in the form of neck stiffness and pain,” states Arthur C. Croft, D.C., M.Sc., M.P.H., F.A.C.O. director of the Spine Research Institute, San Diego, CA and a member of the Foundation. “While chiropractic care in the acute stage can often stave off this unpleasant outcome, two of the studies have shown that even in the chronic stage, chiropractic intervention can provide up to 90 percent relief for these sufferers.”
Dr. Croft cites research reported in Injury (27(9), 643-645) where authors Gargan and Bannister state, “93 percent of the 28 patients studied retrospectively were found to have a statistically significant improvement following chiropractic care. In a follow-up study published in Journal of Orthopaedic Medicine, 21(1), authors Khan, Cook, Gargan, & Bannister conclude, “Whiplash injuries are common. Chiropractic is the only proven effective treatment in chronic cases. Our study enables patients to be classified at initial assessment in order to target those patients who will benefit from such treatment.”
Additionally, Croft points to two studies reported in the Journal of Manipulative Physiology and Therapy, 28(1), 3-11 in which authors Giles and Muller state, “For chronic spinal pain in general, when compared to acupuncture and traditional medical approaches, chiropractic has generally be shown to be more effective.”

Dr. Zach's Comments:

  • A couple of point to "drive" home: 1) Notice that the studies discussed here reveal that, if taken care of immediately (in the acute stage), chronic pain can often be avoided. However, if it is not taken care of immediately, chiropractic care is still extremely effective, but some residuals of the accident do remain. Also note that according to this article, chiropractic care is the only proven effective treatment in CHRONIC cases.

  • So, if you have been in an automobile accident or are in one in the future, see a chiropractor as soon as possible. Regardless of how you feel or felt right after the accident, chiropractic care has been shown to greatly reduce chronic nagging problems that show up years after the accident.

  • If your children were in an auto accident (large or small) get them in immediately. Children are very resilient and their bodies are able to adapt to spinal injury quickly. The problem however lies in that adaptability. Injuries can heal in the wrong position and not show up as pain until years or even decades later. Having your child's spine examined for subluxations now can prevent significant problems in the future.

  • Why do all these problems arise in the first place? Spinal trauma (such as from an auto accident) can cause soft tissue injury and bone/joint misalignment which in turn causes a cascade of other negative events including scar tissue development, muscle shortening, nerve damage, and chronic inflammation. All of these events cause dysfunction and eventual degeneration of the spine and surrounding tissues. The only way to prevent this is to properly rehabilitate the area of injury, and chiropractic is the only treatment that addresses all these components at once.

Make Your Breast Milk Healthier Through Laughter

Laughter elevates the levels of breast-milk melatonin.

(Journal of Phychosomatic Research, June, 2007) Patients with atopic eczema (AE) often complain of sleep disturbance. Melatonin is involved in sleep, and the levels of blood melatonin in patients with AE are decreased in comparison to healthy subjects. The effect of laughter on the levels of breast-milk melatonin was studied in mothers with AE. Moreover, the effect of feeding with breast milk after laughter on allergic responses in infants was studied.

Forty-eight infants aged 5-6 months were enrolled. All of the infants had AE and were allergic to latex and house dust mite (HDM). Half of the mothers of these infants were patients with AE, while another 24 mothers were healthy subjects. The mothers viewed either an 87-min humorous DVD (Modern Times, featuring Charlie Chaplin) or an 87-min nonhumorous weather information DVD. The levels of breast-milk melatonin were measured. In addition, skin wheal responses to HDM and histamine were studied in infants.

Laughter caused by viewing a humorous DVD increased the levels of breast-milk melatonin in both mothers with AE and healthy mothers. In addition, allergic responses to latex and HDM of infants were reduced by feeding with breast milk after laughter of mothers with AE or of healthy mothers.

Laughter increased the levels of breast-milk melatonin in both mothers with AE and healthy mothers, and feeding infants with increased levels of melatonin-containing milk reduced allergic responses in infants. Thus, laughter of mothers may be helpful in the treatment of infants with AE.

Dr. Zach's Comments:

  • There's two things that are truly great about this study. 1) There is no bias from researchers with vested interest. In other words, there is nothing to sell after this research is published (except maybe Charlie Chaplin movies). No drug, no potion or pill... just a natural way for your body to produce what it already has the ability to make and can do when given the right environment. 2) The study also shows the power of the human mind. These individuals were not consciously trying to increase their melatonin levels through emotion, but it happened anyway. What you may not realize is that this is something you can consciously do every day.

  • Your attitude and belief system has a huge impact on your health, and it's something you can absolutely control. In fact your emotional state may be one of the most important factors in your health (yes, even more than chiropractic). Some say: "I'll believe it when I see it." What I'm telling you is You will see it when you believe it.

Backpack Safety

Take pain out of returning to school

(Cincinnati Community Press) The National Chiropractic Association warns that excessive or unevenly distributed weight in a backpack can put strain on a child's growing spine, which can lead to serious back pain, changes in posture and gait, and potential irritation and injury of the spine, joints and muscles.
In a recent report by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 75 percent of the children studied suffered from some sort of back pain with backpacks being a large contributor. Backpack guidelines suggest that children should carry no more than 10 percent of their total body weight in their backpack. The safety commission found that one-third of school children regularly carried more than 30 percent of their weight in their backpack.
Chiropractor Virginia Cantillon says, "We see more kids with back pain that is directly attributable to the weight they are carrying. They are having neck problems, mid- and lower-back pain."
Overloaded bags will initially cause some pain around the neck, which can lead to other conditions like headaches, and eventually impaired mechanical movement.
Here are a few simple recommendations and guidelines that can make a world of difference in a child's spinal health:
* Choose a backpack that is proportionate to body size and not larger than needed.
* Select a backpack made of lightweight material.
* The shoulder straps should be at least two inches wide, adjustable and padded.
* A backpack should have a padded back for added protection and comfort.
* Evenly distribute contents and pack the heaviest items close to the body.
* Backpacks should never exceed 15 percent of a secondary school child's body weight or 10 percent of an elementary school child's body weight.
Following these recommendations will take some of the pain out of returning to school.

Dr. Zach's Comments:

  • The fact that more and more children are having health issues such as back pain, neck pain, and headaches is a disturbing trend and a sign that their environment is not one that promotes health. Furthermore we are seeing other heath issues arise is children that were just a decade ago seen only in adults (type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer).

  • Your children cannot make appropriate decisions about their health and well being, therefore YOU MUST MAKE THE RIGHT DECISIONS FOR THEM! Make sure they are getting a nutritionally adequate diet, plenty of activity and sleep, and spiritual guidance. Also make the effort to ward off preventable ailments through proactive approaches to health issues such as backpack screenings (offered at McCabe Family Chiropractic and McCabe Chiropractic and Wellness Center in 2 months!), chiropractic spinal screenings, and other health and wellness oriented check-ups by other health care providers.

  • Allowing spinal injuries (even small ones) to go uncorrected in children can lead to much more serious problems in the future. Furthermore, these injuries (we call them subluxations) can prevent a child or adult from reaching their maximum potential because of the nerve system involvement. Have your child checked for subluxations today!