What is sciatica?

Sciatica is characterized by sharp, intense pain that runs the entire length of the backside of the leg. This can occur when certain nerves become pinched in the lower part of the spine running along the sciatica nerve, which is the longest single nerve in the human body.

Symptoms:

  • Strong, shooting pains in the limbs and lower back -Numbness and tingling in the lower extremities -Difficulty moving and exercising
  • Feeling stiff and unable to properly move feet -Pain when sleeping
  • Throbbing around the thighs, glutes, and low back when sitting or standing for long periods of times

Non-Surgery Solutions:

  1.  Since chiropractic care is the direct interaction with the nervous system, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that chiropractic adjustments can greatly improve sciatica! In fact, a 2010 study in the Journal of Manipulative Physiological Therapies found that 60% of patients benefited from chiropractic adjustments AFTER having received failed medical interventions.
  2. Exercises to strengthen the low back AND the core are very important as well to treating sciatica. Try exercises such as forward fold, cat-cow, and plank. A standard yoga class will incorporate these moves – along with much more – so it is well worth giving yoga a try!
  3. Don’t sit for long periods of time. Movement equals life when it comes to your health! Unfortunately, most of us have sedentary jobs that require us to sit for extended periods of time. Try getting a standing desk or utilize a wobble cushion to keep your spine moving throughout the day. After all, 90% of the stimulation that goes to your brain is controlled by the spine directly.
  4. Lastly, eat a healing and non-inflammatory diet. This may not seem as obvious at first, but chronic and systemic inflammation lead to many underlying pains and diseases. A healing diet consists of things like healthy fats (think coconut oil, olive oil, and ghee!), high quality meats such as grass-fed beef and organic, free range poultry, and finally, reduce grains and sugars as much as possible from the diet. Turmeric is another fun spice to add into the mix due to its anti-inflammatory properties!

What is acid reflux?

Do you know that it is estimated that 25 to 40 percent of Americans suffer from acid reflux? By definition, acid reflux is dysfunction of the lower esophageal sphincter. If this sphincter doesn’t close all the way after food has passed through, acid from the stomach will creep up the digestive tract and cause a skew of symptoms. Symptoms include: heartburn, bitter taste in mouth, bad breath, dry mouth, gum irritations, black stools, bloody vomiting, regurgitation of acidic food, pain in the abdomen, and belching, flatulence, and nausea.

Conventional Solutions – The Risks:

Over the counter medications such as antacids (TUMS) and H2 Blockers (Pepcid), might treat a symptom in the short-term, but are very detrimental to your health. For starters, these medications are designed to block the body’s natural production of HCl. Therefore, the body is no longer able to produce pepsin, which is the body’s digestive enzyme responsible for breaking down proteins. This can cause further abdominal pain and increases your risk of infections from bacteria that would normally be killed by a healthy pH in the stomach.

Natural Solutions:

1) Apple cider vinegar

This home remedy is so simple it is definitely worth a try if you suffer from acid reflux. Apple cider vinegar works by balancing your stomach’s pH and therefore normalizing stomach acid. Try 2 tablespoons with 8 ounces of water before meals.

2) Eat green, leafy vegetables

The benefits of leafy greens are endless! Cruciferous vegetables are amazing at balancing the pH in your stomach and alkalizing your whole body. The precursor to your body’s strongest antioxidant, glutathione, comes directly from these greens. Load up with vegetables like broccoli, kale and spinach – or try others to find your new favorite!

3) Fermented foods/drinks

Probiotic foods can help nourish the healthy bacteria in our digestive tract. Research has shown that these fer- mented foods can protect the stomach lining and even prevent regurgitation. Try out foods like kombucha, kefir, and sauerkraut. Better, yet – experiment making your own fermented foods!

4) Get adjusted

Stress from sitting all day, car accidents, sports injuries, or other traumas can lead to compression of the spine, specifically in the mid back region where nerves lead directly to the stomach. Moreover, an issue in the upper part of your neck can put pressure on your vagus nerve. This nerve controls the parasympathetic system and tells your body to relax and digest food. What ends up happening is your body is put into a chronic stress response (sympathetic overload), and in turn your body is not able to function and heal like it is designed to. It is is clear to see why a healthy, functioning spine is essential for not only acid reflux, but also overall health!

 

Oh my Migraines

MY OH MY! MIGRAINES!

What is your migraine trying to tell you? If you suffer from migraines, it is crucial to ask yourself: “What is causing my migraines?” Instead of: “How can I treat my migraines?” Functional medicine is medicine by CAUSE, not medicine by symptom. So what are some common underlying causes of migraines?

Causes:
1) Food sensitivities

2) Hormone imbalances

3) Magensium
deficiency

4) Posture and
subluxation

The good news is there are simple steps you can take to treat underlying causes
of migraines!

Solutions:

1) Elimination diet

By removing common food allergens, you can test which foods might be causing your migraines. These foods include eggs, dairy, gluten, and peanuts.
Be sure to reintroduce each food slowly.

2) Balance your hormones

Some migraines can be caused by too much estrogen and not enough progesterone. That is why some women get premenstrual migraines! Some things you can do to restore this balance naturally are eliminating caffeine and alcohol, reducing sugar and intake of flour/starches, eating a diet rich with plant based foods, getting quality of sleep, and reducing stress. Also, reduce or eliminate pharmaceutical medications with high levels of estrogen if possible.

Furthermore, hormone imbalances can be caused by a B vitamin
deficiency. Try adding 400 mg of vitamin B2 or riboflavin daily.
Finally, sleep cycles can cause hormone imbalances so a melatonin supplement has been shown to be effective at reducing migraines.

3) Restore magnesium deficiency

Magnesium is known as the relaxation mineral and so deficiency
can cause elevated levels of stress and in return, migraines. Try
adding 300-600 mg of magnesium 2x per day into your routine.

4) Make chiropractic care a part of your wellness routine

Unfortunately, many people have sedentary jobs requiring them
to sit for the majority of their day. This can lead to poor posture
and tense muscles, specifically around the neck region. In a
randomized control trial by the Journal of Manipulative and
Physiological Therapeutics, a 90% reduction in migraines was
found after only 16 treatments.

Article written by Lauren Oljar with Queen City Health Center

Should you use heat or ice to relieve pain from a neck or back injury?

It’s a common question and one that should be answered if you want to avoid further injury and pain. Making the wrong choice could result in more aggravation to the injury site, so make sure you heed this advice from our team of South Charlotte chiropractors!

The answer of whether to treat an injury with heat or ice depends on the cause of the injury and the symptoms present.

When to use heat on a back injury:

It’s best to think about this like a chemistry student. Heat is used to speed up a reaction. If you want to increase blood flow and circulation to an area of your body, such as a muscle or joint that feels tight or inflexible, then heat should be applied. So if you have feelings of tightness due to stress or tension, then heat is your go-to. Be careful about how much heat is applied and how often. We recommend no more than 20 minutes at a time, and be sure to use a heat pack that’s not too hot in order to avoid burns, or a heating pad on a low setting. Just don’t fall asleep with it touching your skin!

When to use ice on a back injury:

Ice is best if you want to slow down a reaction. (Again, think back to your high school chemistry classes.) Let’s say you have chronic pain due to inflammation. The answer to your problem is simple: cool it down. To slow down blood flow and reduce inflammation, it’s best to apply an ice pack. Make sure the ice doesn’t touch your skin, so you don’t get frostbite. To accomplish this, you can wrap it in a cold wet towel or cloth, and again, apply it for no more than 20 minutes.

In some cases you may want to use both heat and ice, and alternate for periods of 20 minutes each. If you’re not sure, give us a call at (980) 422-2000 to speak with one of our expert South Charlotte chiropractic team! We’ll steer you in the right direction.

If you’ve been suffering from chronic back pain for a while and nothing you’ve tried has worked, you may be due for a visit to our Charlotte NC  pain clinic. Give us a call to reserve your appointment, or click here to request a FREE 15-minute phone consultation with Dr. Holly or one of her team members.

squats Queen City Health Center 4421 Sharon Rd #100, Charlotte, NC 28211 (980) 422-2000

The squat is considered by most people to be an exercise that primarily targets the legs. But here’s a lil’ secret from our chiropractic fitness experts:

When you do it right, it can actually be a full body workout. A movement that targets just about every muscle group in your body.

This makes it one of the most efficient and effective exercises a person can perform. Whether you have 5 minutes or 45 minutes a day, doing squats over a period of several weeks or months is bound to pay off.

So, the question then becomes: what is the right way to do a squat? Unlike eating Reese’s peanut butter cups (which we strongly advise against), there is a wrong way and a right way. And we’re going to teach you the latter.

But first, we should clarify a few things, like why is it important to do squats in the first place?

The short answer is, as stated above, it’s extremely effective. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, build muscle, or both, the squat can help you accomplish your chiropractic fitness goals fast.

The long answer is:

It’s one of the most basic foundational moves in any fitness routine. We’ve been doing squats since we came out of the womb. Over time, as we began sitting in the same position all day long, our squat form became basically nonexistent. Many of us don’t know how to properly do a squat at all.

Prior to modern-day technology and furniture, the squat was the way to sit, whether you were reading a book, using the bathroom, or both. Here’s proof: ever heard of the Squatty Potty? It naturally puts your body in the most optimal position for using the toilet. It’s inspiration lies in the bathrooms of third-world countries that don’t have modern plumbing. The company’s tagline is “the best poop of your life.” They must be on to something, because they’ve made millions…

It doesn’t leave anything out. You don’t just use your legs to squat. You use your hips, core, back, and even your shoulders and arms for balance. This compound movement is a challenge for multiple muscle groups, giving you a total body workout with fast results.

Squatting will make you a better athlete. Whether you’re running a marathon or giving birth, this movement builds strength in areas that many people would call “weak,” including your knees and hips. This makes you stronger which leads to better athleticism overall. This is a critical training move if you play any type of competitive sport.

In short, with squats, you’ll get the biggest bang for your buck. It’s no surprise why this exercise is in just about every chiropractic fitness routine, and most experts would recommend you perform at least 2-3 times per week.

So let’s get to the goods … how do you make the most out of this incredible movement?

How to Squat Down Like a Chiropractic Fitness Pro:

Stand with your feet slightly wider than hips-width and your toes pointing slightly outward (~5 to 20 degrees).

Keep your head up and look straight out in front of you at a spot on the wall. Keep your head and gaze in this position throughout the exercise.

Put your hands around chest-height with your elbows bent as though you’re holding an imaginary medicine ball.

Ensure your weight is equally distributed on the heels and balls of your feet as if they were glued to the ground. Your toes should be able to move the entire time (though you won’t actually move them as part of the exercise.)

Tighten your abs and keep your core engaged throughout the movement.

While breathing in and bending your knees, send your hips backward as though sitting in a chair. Keeping your back straight, your chest and shoulders up, and your spine in a neutral position, be sure your knees stay in line with your feet and don’t move past your toes. Continue to squat until your hip joint is lower than your knees.

How to Come Back Up:

Keep your core engaged and everything tight, and drive through your heels to return to a standing position. Make sure the balls of your feet stay firmly planted and squeeze your glutes at the top.

Once you master your bodyweight squat technique, you may want to try adding a little extra weight to the movement by trading that imaginary medicine ball for a real one! But concentrate on mastering this exercise with just your bodyweight for now. Any chiropractic fitness expert will tell you that proper technique is crucial to getting the results you want in a least amount of time.

If you’d like to know for sure that you’re doing the squat properly, give us a call to schedule an office consultation! We’ll include a mini-lesson on squatting along with an X-ray, any necessary diagnostic testing, and your first adjustment for just $50!

Still not sure if chiropractic fitness is right for you? Click here to request a free phone consultation, and one of our doctors will call you to discuss your goals and needs.

teen girl athlete Queen City Health Center 4421 Sharon Rd #100, Charlotte, NC 28211 (980) 422-2000

The necessity of seeing a chiropractor as an adult athlete is undeniable. Queen City Health Center has helped many young adults who play sports, both on the hobbyist and professional levels. Not only have we helped to relieve the pain and symptoms of various sports injuries in athletes young and old; we’ve also provided coaching for the prevention of athletic injuries so that our patients can enjoy a better quality of life as they get better at whatever sport they choose.

However, we can also attest to the small number of high school athletes undergoing chiropractic care. That number is simply too small for us, so we’ve decided to write this post on the importance of seeing a chiropractor, especially if you’re a teen who plays sports!

Seeing a Charlotte chiropractor can help prevent sports injuries in teens:

While most people seek out a chiropractor in the event of an injury that has already happened, this type of alternative health care is essential to the prevention of injuries as well, especially if you’re an athlete who engages in repetitive motion.

As many athletes know, repetitive motions and repetitive injuries are more likely to result in more injuries down the road than if you’ve never been injured in the first place. So the prevention of injuries from happening is crucial to ensuring you get to continue enjoying your sport. No one wants to spend a season on the bench—or worse—on a stretcher or in a hospital room!

A chiropractor can help by performing simple adjustments designed to optimize athletic performance, while also recommending specific stretches and exercises to aid in building strength. They can also pinpoint motions that may be contributing to inflammation and/or injury to the joints.

A Charlotte NC chiropractor can help treat athletic injuries in teens:

If an injury has already taken place, there’s no need to panic. Chiropractors are experienced when it comes to the treatment of injuries and the alleviation of pain and other symptoms that come about as a result.

However, not all chiropractors are created equal. While some may focus solely on adjustments to treat a condition, the south Charlotte chiropractic doctors at Queen City Health Center will prescribe a holistic regimen that also incorporates diet, rest, exercise, and mental attitude in a way that’s designed to heal your whole body from the inside out. That means you won’t just experience temporary pain relief. You’ll experience full-body healing which aids in the further prevention of injuries in the future!

Moreover, our staff doesn’t just focus on the injury site itself, as we know that doesn’t always lead to complete healing (though it may temporarily relieve your symptoms.) We will treat surrounding areas that may also be contributing to inflammation and pain at the site itself. Again, we’re all about taking a holistic approach to health, rather than masking symptoms and allowing them the opportunity to return.

Why is chiropractic important for high school athletes in particular?

This is a great question! Teens are undergoing an enormous amount of change over a very short period of time (in the grand scheme of their entire lives, anyway). Playing sports only magnifies this, and when injury happens, it not only has an impact physically but may also carry emotional weight as well. If a teen suffers a crippling injury that takes him out of the game altogether, it could lead to sadness or even depression. That’s why a holistic approach to teen health that incorporates not only chiropractic, but also the other essentials (diet, rest, exercise and mental attitude) is extremely beneficial.

If you’re a parent of a teen athlete who plays sports, get in touch with one of our Charlotte chiropractors today! We are eager to help, whether you’re looking to prevent injuries or you’ve suffered a recent injury and are ready to get back in the game. Give us a call at (980) 422-2000 to schedule an office visit, complete with X-rays, a consultation, and an adjustment for only $50!

Not sure if chiropractic is right for your teen? Click here to request a FREE 15-minute phone consultation. We’ll help you determine if an in-person appointment at our office is a good fit for you.

Queen City Health Center is a Charlotte Chiropractic and total wellness center for individuals and families. With locations across Charlotte, NC and Matthews, NC, we specialize in helping individuals and families find true health and ways to maximize their lives through nutrition, lifestyle classes, detoxification and spinal correction.


SouthPark Office 4421 Sharon Rd #100 Charlotte, NC 28211 980-422-2000
Matthews Office 1730 Matthews Township Pkwy Matthews, NC 28105 704-844-6368