Chiropractic Health and Wellness Blog
It’s a cold snowy evening, you just get home from work and you sit on the couch to rest before you start making dinner. As you lie on your back, another coughing fit starts up. I know what you’re thinking, “Is this ever going to go away”? Colds can run rampant through communities in the winter. We are in close quarters, windows closed, exercise less and eat to keep warm. If you feel like there is no end in sight, head over to Healthy Living Market and grab these supplements to get you back on your feet.
Zinc has been known to shorten the duration and severity of the common cold specifically cough.1 15-30mg of zinc daily will help to prevent colds, but if you suspect a cold developing, increase that dosage to 60-90mg a day in 15mg increments throughout the day. Zinc is most effective in the form of a lozenge that dissolves slowly. Healthy Living Market carries a zinc lozenge with Echinacea (another immune supporting supplement).
Growing up my parents always had orange juice in the house. Whenever we were sick, they would do two things, increase orange juice and eliminate refined sugar to help us get over the cold. To prevent a cold, take 250-500mg per day. If you already have cold symptoms, take 1,000mg (1g) to help reduce severity and duration.2
NAC is a sleeper in my opinion. It is not highly recognized as a cold and flu treatment, but there is some great research about its use in helping HIV and AIDS patients. One study explains NAC inhibits virus replication and expression of pro-inflammatory molecules when tested against the H5N1 influenza A virus. 3 I’ve taken it every time I have a cold and it resolves in a couple days.
These three supplements are among my favorites, but nothing replaces clean eating. Cooking with garlic (a natural antibacterial food), adding honey (antibacterial) to tea and eliminating refined sugar are other great ways to help kick a cold or prevent one from starting. In the office, we also recommend patients get adjusted as soon as a cold comes on. Some studies suggest getting adjusted can increase T-cell (sickness fighting cells) production in the body. I just say, “you’ve been coughing and your back is tight, let’s loosen that up”. No matter what has you down, I hope you get back on your feet and feeling better soon. Here’s to a happy and healthy spring!
Do you ever wake up and your throat is itching, burning and it hurts to swallow? If you’re old enough to read this article, I am sure you have experienced a sore throat. You quickly find yourself in a predicament. You want to drink fluids because it feels so good, but the pain of swallowing is terrifying. I found myself in this very situation and was determined to figure out the origin of the “sore throat” and some ways to get through it.
First, why the heck does this happen? Most commonly it is the result of bacteria in the back of the throat. The bacteria make the skin angry and puts those pain nerves on high alert. When we swallow, the muscles in the throat contract and irritate the surrounding tissue. There are more serious causes of a sore throat, but for the purpose of this article, we’ll stick to the simple bacteria cause.
Enough is Enough
So, I bundled up to head out to Healthy Living Market in search of something fun to try to remove the razor blades in my throat. I know from some previous research; local honey is antibacterial and can help speed things up. If you’ve been to Healthy Living before, you know, the tea isle is on the way to the honey isle. That’s right, I name the isles by what’s in them!
Anyway, everyone knows tea and honey go together like pizza and wine, which may be the reason I got this sore throat in the first place. Sugar in wine can be irritating and cause inflammation while cheese increases mucus production. I walk to the tea isle and sit down crisscross-apple-sauce, like a child, in front of the great wall of tea and start to read through my favorite brand: Traditional Medicinals. This California-based company is from one of my favorite towns just North of San Francisco.
I gravitated to a tea called Throat Coat that has lemon Echinacea in it. After 30 seconds of reading and browsing other teas, I headed to check out: tea in one hand, honey in the other. My decision to buy this tea was solidified when the woman who cashed me out confirmed this tea was incredible.
Fast forward 15 minutes to when I was sitting on the couch in amazement at how good I felt. Before I started researching new homemade pizza recipes, I needed to learn a little more about this Echinacea stuff. To my amazement, I found that Echinacea has been found to increase white blood cells. White blood cells help to fight bacteria and infection in the body.
Finally, I was feeling better. Local honey and Echinacea to help fight bacteria. Tea helps soothe the sore skin in the throat. With each sip of tea becoming easier to swallow, I took some time to write about my experience in case you find yourself in the same predicament.
As a young chiropractic student, I constantly felt pressure to learn how to treat patients. I spent hours studying obscure conditions and learning about different anatomical systems. That pressure was slowly replaced with the real world question: “How the heck am I going to run a business and be a successful doctor”? I was fortunate that my college, Northwestern College of Chiropractic had a clinical externship program to help students obtain real-world experience before graduation day.
Dr. Favro’s Externship Experience
Let’s face it, starting a business is scary, but with some guidance and a little experience, you are much better prepared. My externship was fantastic. I was able to work with Dr. Kevin Schreifels at LynLake Chiropractic in Minneapolis. Dr. Schreifels is the official chiropractor of the Twin Cities Marathon and is no stranger to treating Olympians and athletes of all skill level. I learned the value of patient communication, ethical business practice and community involvement during my time at LynLake. I vowed to become an externship doctor and give back to the profession because of this experience. Toward the end of summer 2016, I submitted the application to be a teaching site.
What This Means for the Profession
In October of 2016, Turning Point Chiropractic became an approved Externship site for New York Chiropractic College. Only 14 accredited chiropractic colleges exist in the Unites States. The problem is not all of them have an externship program. Furthermore, there are less than 3,000 new doctors of chiropractic graduating each year. Given these numbers, acceptance into the program is a great honor. This means I am able to shape the landscape of healthcare not only through patients and the community, but through mentoring young doctors and students. One of my many goals during my graduate program was to create a positive impact on my profession by giving back. This is the perfect opportunity.
About Turning Point
Turning Point Chiropractic is a research based clinic. Treatment procedures, diagnostic skills and testing protocols from the most current peer-reviewed journals in healthcare. This type of forward thinking is crucial in keeping health care costs down. It is exciting to be able to teach this model to the next group of doctors and continue to shape the face of healthcare.
We’ve all been there. You’ve been crushing your workout goals, your skinny jeans are back in full force and you want to break out the American flag tank top in the middle of March. You feel healthy, but you ache all over. How can you treat your body so well, and it turns it’s back on you? You foam roll, use a lacrosse ball, Thera cane, do yoga and roll around in a tub of Biofreeze, but nothing works! Finally you decide to come see me and after a few treatments you’ve only made a slight improvement. At Turning Point Chiropractic I get asked (more than once a day), “Why do I still hurt”?
The answer is relatively simple: You’ve trained your body to hurt and now we have to un-train it.
That’s right. It wasn’t your intention, but as we start to work out and train, our muscles bleed on a microscopic level and produce lactic acid. Blood has the ingredients for scar tissue (fibroblast) and lactic acid is a byproduct of contraction (like exhaust in a car). When these two processes take place the body starts to move differently (altered biomechanics) and you created a poor workout pattern. The real issue is you don’t feel it right away. Even if you do, you can stretch and make it go away. Or so you think.
I’ll Work Through it
The old adage of, “I’ll just work through it.” only works zero percent of the time. Fibroblasts and lactic acid keep building up until… TRIGGER POINT. I’m sure you’ve heard of this buzz word around us hands-on practitioners. Trigger points are very small spasms that can cause very large problems. They can be in one spot and cause pain somewhere completely different. They can change the way you move and even your emotional state. That is why finding them takes a highly trained professional.
So what do we do?
The biggest problem with a trigger point is identifying why it is there. If the patient (you) can tell the
doctor (me) what you were doing, we have a good chance of taking care of it. There are many techniques I use in my office to find and get rid of trigger points. Some of them being interferential muscle stimulation, Active Release Techniques®, therapeutic ultrasound, instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization (Graston®) and much more.
Treatment started and you still hurt
This is the real reason I wanted to write this article. I get patients who constantly ask me why they still have pain. Why does it keep coming back? The answer is you have trained your muscles to act like that. In the same way you train for a marathon, train to do pushups or train to sit at a desk all day. You have trained that muscle to think it has to be constantly contracting. It feels it has a job to do and does it proudly. Therefore, it will take some time to un-train it and re-train it to act like that powerful machine it wants to be. For some people that can be three treatments, for others it may be longer.
The bottom line is, don’t wait to get treated and be patient. Your pain didn’t happen overnight and fixing it won’t happen overnight either.
-Dr. Adam N. Favro, chiropractor