Childhood Ear Infections & Chiropractic

 

     What is the most common reason parents bring their child to the doctor?  Ear infections.  This is an inflammation of the middle ear, usually caused by bacteria, that occurs when fluid builds up behind the eardrum.  Although adults can get ear infections, they are more common in children.  The National Institute of Health has said that Five out of six children will have at least one ear infection by their third birthday.

Let’s look at the anatomy to understand why an ear infection may occur.  Behind the ear is the Eustachian tube which are smaller and more level in children than they are in adults.  This can make it difficult for fluid to drain out of the ear, even under normal conditions. If the eustachian tubes are swollen or blocked with mucus due to a cold or other respiratory illness, fluid may not be able to drain.

From a biomechanical or Chiropractic view, the atlas (first cervical vertebra aka C1) has two side projections called transverse processes and when the Atlas (C1) is subluxated (spinal vertebra misaligned) can put pressure or partially block the Eustacian tube from draining as well.

One common question, I get from patients is, “Why would my young child have a subluxation?”  I respond it’s because they have a spine like adults, they are active (running, falling, bumps, etc.) and they went through the birth process which for some can be traumatic at times on a infants spine.  The overwhelming majority of newborns that I have checked for subluxation in my 12 years of practice have shown some type of subluxation – many times at C1.  Side note: Chiropractic care for newborns is unlike care for adults and is very safe, gentle and effective.  

When the Eustacian tube is blocked, bacteria can build up thriving off the build up of mucus that accumulated.  Research has shown that children get ear infections as a result of this improper drainage of the deep neck lymphatics.  This causes fluid build up, an inflamed and bulging ear drum, and a welcome habitat for bacteria.  Since a child’s immune system isn’t as effective as an adult’s because it’s still developing, this makes it harder for children to fight infections.

The medical approach has children using antibiotics, which with prolonged use can lead to future antibiotic resistance, gut flora problems that can lead to leaky gut and other GI issues and it makes the child more susceptible to other infectious diseases, allergies, obesity, and autoimmune disorders.  Even famous medical doctors like Dr. Sears has come out and recommended a restricted and limited use of Antibiotics.  Even, the Journal of the American Medical Association had a study that concluded that children who took Amoxicillin for chronic ear infections were up to 6 times more likely to have a recurrence of their ear problem than those who received a sugar pill.  Lead author Erdem Cantekin Ph.D. said “children are being abused by the antibiotic treatment in this country.”

Drug resistant strains of childhood ear infections are rapidly increasing.  Health officials say the trend is closely linked to doctors’ misuse of broad spectrum antibiotics.  It is now known that antibiotics can cause side effects and lead to the development of drug resistant bacteria that can cause a more serious disease.  Antibiotics are not the preferred option in the early stages of the condition.

A more natural approach of killing off bacteria is to restore nervous system function which results in normal drainage of the ears and lymphatics and a more normalized function of the immune system.  Doctors of Chiropractic specialize in restoring normal function of the spine and nervous system and have shown to have a good track record in dealing with children with chronic ear infections.  I have seen an incredibly high success rate in my own clinic in treating Childhood and Adult Ear Infections and each case was a subluxation of the Atlas (C1) that we removed the nerve interference for maximum healing and removed the blocking of the Eustacian tube for proper ear drainage.

 

“Dr. Matt” as he is known to his patients, is in private practice, an author, nationally sought after speaker, podcaster, visionary, Maximized Living Doctor of Chiropractic and health ambassador to the general public as he educates and empowers others about true health and well-being.  He works out of two health clinics in Roswell and Johns Creek, GA (both are just north of Atlanta) and has over 11 years of clinical experience.  You can reach him at (drmattcares@gmail.com)

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome & Chiropractic

 

With the explosion of technology over the last 30 years (smartphones, tablets, laptops and personal computers), it is no wonder that we are seeing a rise with Carpel Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) cases.  CTS is also called “Repetitive Trauma Disorder” or “Overuse Syndrome”.  It occurs when the median nerve of the wrist is irritated or compressed, many times by the subluxation of the carpal bones.

The wrist is formed by 8 carpel bones with some creating a tunnel like structure (the carpal tunnel).  Through this tunnel, the median nerve and 9 tendons pass through.  Symptoms of CTS include pain, numbness and/or tingling, and weakness of the wrist, hand, and fingers.  Sometimes it is so severe that it will awaken the sufferer during the night.  CTS can affect anybody that does repetitive tasks with their hands i.e.:  secretaries, carpenters, computer workers, musicians, assembly line workers or anyone who uses the previously said technologies on a consistent basis.

The medical approach for CTS has included drugs, cortisone, splints, and surgery, yet all have shown a poor success rate.  As a result of the poor medical outcomes, Robert Mendelsohn, M.D. concluded:  “Since the medical treatment for this condition is so often unsatisfactory, I have for years been recommending that my patients consult muscle and joint therapy specialists (like Chiropractors).”

A number of researchers who found spinal nerve root irritation in patients which had carpel tunnel or ulnar-neuropathy have documented the relationship between spinal health and carpel tunnel syndrome.  Other researchers have shown that nerve compression in the neck can block the flow of nutrition to the nerves in the wrist.  This will increase the chance of injury.  Yet another researcher found that out of 1,000 cases of CTS a large number of these sufferers had bad neck arthritis, thus supporting the connection that in many cases – the issues of the sufferer does not stem from the wrist, but from the neck.  We have see hundreds of these cases in our clinic over the years.  A patient will come in with CTS symptoms and with Chiropractic adjustments of the Cervical Spine, the patient’s symptoms reduce or are eliminated.  Our success rate of CTS has been so high, I often wonder how this may be the case for the poor medical outcomes – as they treat the symptoms of CTS (wrist) and we find the cause (cervical spine subluxation correction).

The treatment by a Doctor of Chiropractic is to perform a gentle and specific Adjustment to gently realign the cervical spine or one of the subluxated eight bones (the scaphoid specifically is the most common subluxated carpal bone)of the wrist to reduce the never interference, irritation and swelling.  When the swelling decreases, so do the carpal tunnel symptoms.  With proper care, the bones and nerves to the wrist and the neck will function properly for many years to come.  Chiropractic treatment for this ailment is often a first choice because it is non-invasive, gentle, drug free, and surgery free.  The aim of the treatment is to move the joints into position so they can work as they were designed to and allow your nerves to function with no interference.  Once the joints are properly aligned, the stress in the area is lessened and the pain and numbness are relieved.

In light of what is known about CTS, anyone suffering from it should see a chiropractor to ensure that their spine is free of spinal subluxations.  A chiropractic spinal adjustment may make the difference between a pain free wrist and spinal surgery.

“Dr. Matt” as he is known to his patients, is in private practice, an author, nationally sought after speaker, visionary, Maximized Living Doctor of Chiropractic and health ambassador to the general public as he educates and empowers others about true health and well-being.  He works out of two health clinics in Roswell and Johns Creek, GA (both are just north of Atlanta) and has over 11 years of clinical experience.  You can reach him at (drmattcares@gmail.com)

Is it Really Medicine vs. Chiropractic?

     I have this conversation about a dozen times a year, whether it be with someone in the community, friends and new patients.  First let me begin by saying – this is NOT a ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ article.  I believe that all doctors (MD, DO, DC, NPM, DPT, etc.) should ALWAYS work together for what is in the best interest of the patient – period!  Our approach as Doctors of Chiropractic is more natural in nature (no pun intended).  Modern medical treatments do save lives and is necessary in our modern society, but unfortunately many have become dependant on treating all ailments with drugs, no matter how small the issue is.  We as holistic doctors believe that the body was created to heal on its own and that a natural approach (proper nutrition, fitness, mindset and Chiropractic adjustments) keep the body in optimal functioning and reducing the need of excess drugs and surgery.

I do feel though, that there is a lack of understanding on what Chiropractic and an Alternative lifestyle provides, especially considering we are brought up indoctrinated in this modern medical society.  In addition, once there is a clear understanding of what chiropractic does for human health, people see clearly how chiropractic is not in competition with what medicine does.

Medicine is the best health care system we have for crisis care.  It has prided itself on the fact that people with health crises live longer than they have in the past.  This is clearly a significant development in health care today.

Medicine takes most of its criticism over the issue of long-term health care, especially long-term drug use.  It has been shown repeatedly in the last decade through various research reports that long-term health care belongs more in the realm of natural methods.  An increasing number of medical professionals are saying that there is a need to move away from drugs for long-term health and to move to methods that are more natural.  Organizations like the World Health Organization, The United Nations, and local governments say openly that the wave of health care in the future is dealing with health care methods that build a stronger body. They suggest a move away from the current focus on crises health care.

If medical doctors of the future are better educated about the successes of natural methods of Chiropractic, it will take away this conflict of Chiropractic versus Medicine.   If someone’s health has failed and they experience a heart attack, I am very glad that we have a system of paramedics and medical doctors to keep that person alive.   However, if someone is involved with natural methods of healthcare they have a dramatic decrease in the risk of having a heart attack in the first place. They would also experience a decreased risk of many other health crises.  As a result, people who use natural health methods have a stronger, healthier body and a higher quality of life throughout those earlier years as well.

Chiropractic prides itself on the fact that proactive care leads to healthier people.  These people experience a decrease in many different diseases and health problems as life progresses.

Chiropractic is based on the premise that we all have a brain and nervous system that holds all the information needed to have a perfectly healthy body.  Health problems exist because there are blockages in how this information is allowed to get to the body for it to heal itself.  Chiropractic care is based on the idea that we look for the blockages to how our nervous system is supposed to communicate with our bodies and remove these blockages.

As Dr. Deepak Chopra has said: “All we need to do to have perfect health is to remove the interferences to how our body is supposed to work.  We do not need to add unnatural substances.”

“Dr. Matt” as he is known to his patients, is in private practice, an author, nationally sought after speaker, visionary, Maximized Living Doctor of Chiropractic and health ambassador to the general public as he educates and empowers others about true health and well-being.  He works out of two health clinics in Roswell and Johns Creek, GA (both are just north of Atlanta) and has over 11 years of clinical experience.  You can reach him at (drmattcares@gmail.com)