Tuesday, December 19, 2017

CranioSacral Therapy and Stress

The Christmas season is often a very stressful time of year for everyone.  With all the late nights, overindulging, and running around getting ready we often do not have or make enough time for ourselves.  CranioSacral therapy is a wonderful idea to help yourself distress in the middle or even after all the stress of the holidays. 

When most people think about CranioSacral therapy they think about helping headaches, chronic pain, or birth trauma.  But it can be used for so much more.  Often we just need time to relax and take some time for ourselves.  The bonus with CranioSacral therapy is that not only does it relax us but it also helps our body to heal itself as well.  CranioSacral therapy gets our parasympathetic system working.  Most of us spend most of our time in our sympathetic system (or fight and flight system).  This makes our body work that much more every day and stresses our whole body.  One or two CranioSacral treatments can help get your body work more effectively and at the same time relieve much of your stress.  We all deserve to take some time for ourselves.  Our bodies will thank us for it.    

Jeannette Raskin practices at Family First Chiropractic, 142 Erickson Drive, Red Deer, Alberta.  403-347-3261. www.family1stchiro.ca

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Bone Broth

Did you know Bone Broth is so easy to make?

Bone broth is so easy to make and has amazing benefits on our gut health.
Here are my few tricks and recipe for a delicious bone broth.
I typically use organic grass-fed beef bones or organic free-range chickens when making bone broth. However, you can use any bones as the health benefits are amazing. Here is how to make a healthy tasty broth.

·         When I cut veggies for other suppers or lunches, as well as the peels and tops I put them in a Ziploc and throw them in the freezer to use in my bone broth later.
·         I usually roast the beef bones before I add it to the water to make the broth, I will use the cooked bones from a roast chicken after we have carved it.
·         Place bones in a pot or a crockpot, add apple cider vinegar and cover with water, and let the mixture sit for 1 hour so the vinegar can leach the mineral out of the bones.
·         Add the chopped/peel vegetables from the freezer and bring to a boil. A scum may form so skim it from the top and discard.
·         Optional – add liver or other organ meats to the broth
·         Reduce to a low simmer, cover, and cook for 24-72 hours (if you're not comfortable leaving the pot to simmer overnight, turn off the heat and let it sit overnight. I will then turn it back on and allow the broth to simmer all day the next day) or put it on low in a large crockpot for 24-27 hours.
·         Let the broth cool and strain it, making sure all marrow is knocked out of the marrow bones and into the broth.
·         Add sea salt to taste and drink the broth, you may store in fridge up to 5 to 7 days or freezer up to 6 months for use in soups, stews, cooking stir fry, or rice, just use your imagination!
Try bone broth as one of your child's first foods!

Our three boys love to have soup from the ‘special pot.' 

Bone broth is a staple in the GAPS diet and assists in healing a leaky gut. I love to drink it for its health benefits.
If your gut is leaky or permeable, partially undigested food, toxins, viruses, yeast, and bacteria have the opportunity to pass through your intestine and access your bloodstream; this is a leaky gut. Leaky gut is the root of many allergies and autoimmune disorders, for example. When combined with toxic overload, you have a perfect storm that can lead to neurological disorders like autism, ADHD, and learning disabilities.
Bone broth is a great staple food to include in your diet. Benefits of bone broth include the following:

·         The gelatin found in bone broth is a hydrophilic colloid that attracts and holds liquids, including digestive juices, thereby supporting proper digestion and healthy hair and nails.
·         Bone broth reduces joint pain and inflammation courtesy of chondroitin sulfates, glucosamine, and other compounds extracted from the boiled down cartilage
·         Contains glycosaminoglycans GAGs
·         Amino acids such as glycine, proline, glutamine, and arginine in bone broth all have anti-inflammatory effects
·         Bone broth contains high amounts of calcium, magnesium, and other nutrients that play an essential role in healthy bone formation.
·         Reduces joint pain and inflammation
·         Inhibits infection and boost immunity

Dr. Joelle Johnson is a mother of three beautiful boys and practices at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness, 142 Erickson drive, Red Deer www.family1stchiro.ca 403-347-3261 

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Tylenol and ADHD?

A pregnant woman's use of acetaminophen may be associated with an increase in her child's risk for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a prospective study published in Pediatrics.
"Long-term acetaminophen use during pregnancy is related to more than a twofold increase in risk for offspring ADHD," after adjusting for genetic risk factors, indications for the mother's acetaminophen use, use of the drug before pregnancy, and other potential con-founders. These findings do not establish a causal relationship between prenatal acetaminophen exposure and ADHD risk, "but they do suggest the possibility and raise the need for further study and more cautious consideration of acetaminophen use during pregnancy."
It is estimated that approximately 65% to 70% of pregnant women in the United States and approximately 50% to 60% of pregnant women in western and northern Europe use acetaminophen.

A fully adjusted model, which accounted for alcohol use during pregnancy, smoking during pregnancy, symptoms of anxiety and depression during pregnancy, maternal education, marital status, body mass index at the 17th week of gestation, maternal age, and parity, showed a similar trend for increased risk.

The possibility of a relationship between maternal acetaminophen use and ADHD "brings to mind the association between aspirin and Reye syndrome,"  "Although the comparisons are far from perfect, given the serious morbidity and risk of mortality associated with Reye syndrome, it does illustrate how finding associations between drug and disease can improve health outcomes."
Reye syndrome is a rapidly progressive encephalopathy. About 90% of cases are associated with aspirin (salicylate) use in children.
Always be careful what medication you take during pregnancy and what you give your children. Dosage and drug type matter. Consult with your physician if you are in doubt. Sometimes there are other options to medications that can be useful especially during pregnancy and with children.
Ask us at Family First Chiropractic. We are here to help.

Dr. Stephen Kelly is a Chiropractor at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness, located In Red Deer, AB 142 

Erickson Dr., www.family1stchiro.ca   Call 403-347-3261 to book an appointment.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

How does Craniosacral compliment other Medical Interventions?

Most Medical and Healthcare practitioners see CranioSacral Therapy as a gentle and non-invasive Complementary Therapy - it is considered as suitable for the co-treatment of a number of conditions.
Many medical professionals criteria for recommending  therapies is that if it is doing no harm, makes you feel good and does not cost too much then go ahead.

To answer the question more directly, I often receive new clients in the following situations:
·         They have been through formal medical channels.
Often in the case of 
back pain, stress related illness etc. clients feel they have exhausted all that formal medicine has to offer. This is ideal from my point of view as a full medical history has been built up and the individual's condition has been pre-checked by a medical practitioner.
·         The client wishes to complement formal medical treatment with another therapy.
Many of my 
pregnant clients and moms with infants and children are receiving formal medical care for their conditions and related complications. They typically continue with this care as they attend CranioSacral Therapy to further relieve symptoms or to reach the parts that they feel formal medical interventions cannot reach.

In summary, in my experience the answer is yes - CranioSacral Therapy can be used alongside formal medical interventions. 
As always, first check with your Healthcare practitioner.

Jeannette Raskin practices at Family First Chiropractic, 142 Erickson Drive, Red Deer, Alberta.  403-347-3261. www.family1stchiro.ca

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Repetitive Strain Injuries

Repetitive Strain Injuries

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) most commonly known as damage to nerves, tendons, tendon sheaths, muscles, joints of the wrists, forearm, elbow, shoulder and neck. Repetitive Strain Injuries can be confusing in that patients don’t understand the symptoms related and the causes or even more importantly how can it be treated.

Causes of RSI

Repetitive Strain Injuries occur through overuse, poor posture and/or poor technique particularly while using the hands. Repeated awkward or forceful tasks for sustained periods of time are major factors causing RSI. Workers do not make the connection between their aches and pains developing in the work place or in the field. Repeated vibrations, forceful impacts or compressions for periods of time cause microscopic tears in the tendons and muscles. Over time the sheaths around the tendons start to chafe causing tendons to become inflamed. Inflammation of the sheath compresses against adjacent nerves, which compromises the nerves nearby.

Symptoms of RSI

Symptoms of RSI can range from discomfort to excruciating pain. Symptoms occur in the fingers, palm, wrist, forearm, shoulders, and neck. Pain in one area of the body may radiate to other connecting parts. 
General symptoms include:
-Aching or shooting pain (May be strongest at night).
-Tingling and burning sensations.
-Clumsiness of hands (loss of ability to grasp items, impaired thumb and finger dexterity).
-Swelling of hand and wrist.
-Hands feel cold.
-Wasting of Muscles at the base of the thumb.
- Stiffness or restricted movement.

Common Types of Repetitive Strain Injuries

Rapid, repetitive, and repeated twisting movement of the forearms and hands. Patients that do a lot of keyboard work, and/or using tools such as pliers can develop tenosynovitis. Tenosynovitis and tendonitis sound similar. The difference is that tendonitis is inflammation of the tendons. While Tenosynovitis is inflammation of the tendon sheaths usually in the hand or wrist.

DeQuarvain’s Syndrome
This is a type of tenosynovitis that is known as “trigger thumb” or “Washerwoman’s Sprain”. It also affects the sheath common to the two tendons of the thumb just above the wrist. This repetitive strain injury is caused by repeated trigger-like movement involving the wrist.

Carpel Tunnel Syndrome
Carpel tunnel is tingling, numbness and/or weakness in your hand due to pressure on the median nerve in your wrist. Carpel tunnel is the small space in your wrist that the median nerve and several tendons runs from you forearm into your hand.  The median nerve controls movement and feeling in your thumb and first three fingers. This area becomes compromised when there is repetitive finger movement, pinching and squeezing of fingertips, excessive use of the index finger, hand exertions with bending and twisting of the wrist, and overly tight grip for long periods of time.

Chiropractic for RSI

Chiropractic is an effective treatment option for RSI. Our Chiropractic physicians will conduct an interview, review medical history, and perform a thorough examination. If diagnosed with RSI, the Chiropractor will set up a treatment plan specific to your situation, and needs. So if you suffer from pain in fingers, hand, wrist, forearm, shoulder, neck, or back seek a chiropractic physician. The sooner you do, the better you will feel.

Dr. Elton Clemence practices at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness at 142 Erickson Drive.www.family1stchiro.ca

Call 403-347-3261 for a consultation today

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Supportive/ Maintenance Treatment Works!

A paper presented at the European Chiropractors' Union (ECU) convention earlier this year underscores the advantages of regular chiropractic care. The authors, looked at how chiropractic maintenance care (MC) could prevent new episodes of nonspecific low back pain or minimize its impact. The purpose of their study was to "investigate the effect of MC as compared to symptomatic treatment on reducing recurrent and persistent LBP."
The multi-center, randomized clinical trial was conducted in Sweden, with patients provided with either treatment at regular intervals, regardless of symptoms (MC), or symptomatic treatment whereby patients were treated only when consulting for pain. The MC group was provided with chiropractic care at one- to three-month intervals.
This is an altogether familiar scenario, in that most patients only go for chiropractic care when they are in pain or when something is bothering them. Unfortunately, by the time a patient recognizes their pain, the problem may have been there for some time and damage has been done.  If only they would visit their chiropractor periodically, regardless of symptoms, a point study results make glaringly clear:
"The MC group consisted of 163 subjects who reported 19.3 fewer days with bothersome LBP over the 12 month follow-up compared to the 154 subjects in the control group. The MC group had an average of 7 visits during the study, compared to 5 visits in the control group."
Let's Do the Math
So, here's the math for the average patient. Two extra visits to your chiropractor each year will result in almost 20 extra days without back pain. For me, that works out to about $4 per pain-free day ... I'll take it!
While monthly chiropractic care can be very beneficial, it is clear that most people should be seeing their doctor of chiropractic at least every two months or so. We all need to understand a little regular scheduling could significantly improve our quality of life. Imagine how many days of pain could be eliminated if everyone enjoyed chiropractic at least every two months.
For my whole career I have emphasized regular treatments and not chase pain. Don’t wait for small problems to become big ones. The old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is supported by these types of studies.
To schedule your first appointment or a maintenance treatment, please contact Family First Chiropractic and Wellness.

Dr. Stephen Kelly is a Chiropractor at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness with over 15 years of experience, located In Red Deer, AB 142 Erickson Dr., www.family1stchiro.ca

403-347-3261 to book an appointment

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

How to boost your child's immunity

How to boost your child’s immunity
1. Change the diet
   Eliminate most sugar, and all fruit juice (homemade veggie juice with some fruit is okay a few times per week) and all soda.
   Eliminate most dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt) if it tends to make your child get congested or phlegmy.
   Increase leafy green veggies (kale, broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens) and fresh or frozen berries (organic blueberries, organic strawberries), and make sure your child is getting 2 servings of veggies or fresh fruit at each meal.
   Make sure you child is getting high quality protein (beans, lean meats, fish, poultry) and high quality fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocado) at each meal.
2. Sleep
Children are not getting enough sleep, and restful sleep. The rhythms begin to develop at about six weeks, and by three to six months most infants have a regular sleep-wake cycle. By the age of two, most children have spent more time asleep than awake and overall, a child will spend 40 percent of his or her childhood asleep. Sleep is especially important for children as it directly impacts mental and physical development.
   Ensure the room is black- no lights to interrupt the brains sleep patterns. If you must have a night light opt for a red light not a blue based spectrum. Use black out drapes to ensure the room is dark.
   Reduce screen times of any kind 1 hour before bed, the light on the screen stimulates the brain to an awaken state and inhibits proper sleep patterns

1.    Newborns sleep a total of 10.5 to 18 hours a day on an irregular schedule with periods of one to three hours spent awake.
2.    Infants under 1 typically sleep 9-12 hours during the night and take 30 minute to two-hour naps, one to four times a day – fewer as they reach age one.
3.    Toddlers age 1-2 need about 11-14 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period. When they reach about 18 months of age their naptimes will decrease to once a day lasting about one to three hours. 
4.    Preschoolers age 3-5 typically sleep 11-13 hours each night and most do not nap after five years of age. 
5.    Children aged six to 13 need 9-11 hours of sleep. 
6.    Adults need 7-10 hours of sleep. Do not sleep with a screen or phone in your room, turn it off, put it on do not disturb, or airplane mode at night if you have to.

3. Give Zinc daily
Zinc is an immune boosting mineral found in oysters, beef, and lamb, and to a lesser degree in pumpkin seeds, cashews, and beans. Taken daily for up to 5 months, zinc reduces the likelihood of viral infections, especially colds, absences from school, and antibiotic use in kids. It can easily be given as a flavored lozenge to older kids; for younger children try a liquid.
Here’s the dosing by age:
   6 months to 3 years old 2-3 mg per day
   4-8 years old 5 mg per day
   9-13 years 8-10 mg per day
   14-18 years 10-15 mg per day
   check your multivitamin to see what it has
4. Give Vitamin C daily
A review by the Cochrane Collaboration, a major medical data review group, showed a 13% decrease in cold symptoms in children who took one gram (1000 mg) of vitamin C daily for prevention. The form and dose are “buffered ascorbic acid,” 250-500 milligrams 3 times a day, given with meals.
5. Give a Probiotic daily
Probiotics, especially lactobacillus taken alone or with bifidobacter – which is another species – during the winter has been shown to reduce daycare absences because of fewer colds, are reduce the incidence of fever, cough, runny nose, and the use of antibiotics. Look for a brand that is in a powder or liquid form for younger children so you can hide it in a smoothie, yogurt, or apple sauce, and that contains Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria strains. We carry a wonderful one at the clinic by Douglas labs. 
6. Give Vitamin D3 daily
Vitamin D can help support the immune system and is important for overall health. We tend to get less of it in the winter because we’re indoors so much more, and the sun is a major source, so I recommend supplementing starting in the autumn! All babies 1 year old and under should get vitamin D supplementation regardless of time of year.
   Babies up to age 1 year old, 400 units per day
   1-5 years old, 500-1000 units per day
   5-10 years old, 1000 units per day
   Over 10 years old, 1000-2000 units per day.
7. Give a children’s multivitamin with EFA Daily 
I suggest the Vita-Kids chewable 1-2 per day by Douglas labs and the DHA Pediaburst by Genestra 4-6 per day depending on age
8. Give Gentle Herbal Remedies or immune booster 
What are some of the herbs you can use daily for cold prevention in kids? The ones recommend are:
   Echinacea, and the dose of that in kids 2-5 years old is 7.5 milliliters a day. That’s about a measured teaspoon and a half, and you can give that in two divided doses, so about three quarters of a teaspoon twice a day. And then for kids 6-11 years old, that would be 10 milliliters a day or about 2 measured teaspoons twice a day. Use that same dose for kids over 12 and for adults as well. Echinacea has been shown to support the immune system, prevent the frequency of upper respiratory infections and bronchitis, and also prevent secondary infections, so preventing infections from turning into more entrenched bacterial infections.
   Immune support such as Vita-Kids Immune By Douglas Labs- 1 teaspoon a day contains zinc, elderberry, antioxidants

Dr. Joelle Johnson practices at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness located at 142 Erickson drive, Red Deer www.family1stchiro.ca 403-347-3261.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Halloween and Chiropractic

Trick or Treat!
Halloween is a fun time of year for kids to wear their favorite costume and go out to trick or treat and meet neighbors in the area. There are a few things to keep in mind on that evening to stay safe and to keep healthy during and after that event.
Stay Safe
1.      Stay Visible - Wear reflective tape on costumes, light up shoes, neon lights and carry flashlights. Be seen especially when crossing streets. Little ones are excited that night and can easily wander off sidewalks and step out into the street.
2.      Walk with your kids or keep them with an older sibling.
3.      Inspect your candy before consuming.
4.      Be aware of the weather for that day. The first snowfall of the season usually happens around that date and can cause icy conditions. Dress warmly and wear      proper footwear to avoid slips and falls.
Stay Healthy
1.      Limit your children’s Intake of candy after Halloween night. Sugar lowers your immunity.
2.      Trade candy for a toy or book with your children.
3.      Consider bringing some to work instead of eating it all yourself.
4.      Boost your immune system after excess sugar intake. Drink plenty of water with some lemon/lime added to it.
5.      Get plenty of rest.
6.      Get Adjusted!

Enjoy trick or treating! 

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Craniosacral Therapy and Mouth Work

I have been practicing CranioSacral therapy since 2002 and it has helped me and many of my clients.  When most people talk about this therapy they talk about headaches, birth trauma, or chronic pain.  CranioSacral therapy helps all these things.  But I would like to share my experience with CranioSacral therapy and mouth work.  It has changed me.

I should start with a little history.  Now, I did not have any serious mouth or jaw problems growing up that I can remember.  My biggest problem with my jaw was probably stress clenching.  I know that is not a scientific word but I am sure many people know what I am talking about.  As my stress would increase so would my jaw tension.  When I started taking CranioSacral therapy and receiving treatments is when I noticed a significant difference.  After my first mouth work treatment that I received I could not believe the difference.  My mouth felt bigger and much more relaxed.  I started raving about this to my clients and trying the techniques out on them.  From chronic headache sufferers to clients with braces, the results have been amazing.

Another benefit of mouth work, for me at least, has been the ability to speak more freely.  When we have increased tension in and around our mouths it may unknowingly inhibit our ability to speak.  When even some of our tension is released that allows us to speak.
Mouth work in CranioSacral Therapy is something I practice on most of my clients, especially the infants.  I often see children with birth trauma, tongue ties, etc. and I find that mouth work is essential for them to get the results that they need.  While treating infants I am constantly reassuring, explaining and sometimes even showing the parents how much pressure I am using on their children. 

When practicing CranioSacral therapy in the mouth it just as gentle as when you work outside the mouth.  Sometimes even more gentle.  The practitioner uses gloves and can better access some of the bones of the mouth, the teeth, and even some of the muscles.

Jeannette Raskin practices at Family First Chiropractic, 142 Erickson Drive, Red Deer, Alberta.  403-347-3261. www.family1stchiro.ca

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Once you go chiro..

One of the most misunderstood beliefs about chiropractic is that once you start, you have to keep going back forever.  It's true, many Chiropractic clients choose to continue care on a regular wellness care after experiencing great results, but they do so simply because preventative maintenance makes sense - the body functions better without nerve interference.

Here are some other things that you don't have to maintain/prevent for the rest of your Life, but also make good sense... brushing your teeth, going to the gym, taking your vitamins, eating your veggies, changing the oil in your car or saving for retirement.  Somewhere along the road, you discovered on your own accord that these activities ADD to your Life as opposed to subtract from it, and it's the same for clients who choose to get adjusted for maintenance purposes.

No one can make you do something you don't want to.  Just like regular car tune ups or staying physically fit, the choice to keep your spine and nervous system free from damaging stress for the rest of your life is totally your decision... as are the benefits if you do and the consequences if you don't.

 If you have any questions feel free to email Dr. Elton Clemence at the clinic at www.family1stchiro.ca or call us at 403-347-3261 for consultation and to set up a time to have your spine and nervous system checked.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Tonsil Stones?

If you’re suffering from bad breath, pain in your ears and a feeling that something is stuck in the back your throat, it’s likely you have tonsil stones, or tonsilloliths. Tonsil stones is a condition wherein your tonsils literally produce small, hard substances that contain a mixture of bacteria, calcium, dead cells, mucus and food particles.
Normally, your tonsils serve as the first line of defense against viruses and bacteria. They contain immune system cells, which help eliminate harmful microbes from entering your throat. However, factors such as poor dental hygiene and chronic sinus issues can cause your tonsils to gather foreign matter, which harden and become stones. In other cases, you may simply have large crypts in the tonsils, which increases your likelihood of gathering small bits of food.
Treating Tonsil Stones at Home
There are various approaches to treating tonsil stones naturally. Popular home remedies include:
Saltwater solution: Gargling warm water with a bit of salt can help dislodge the stones and alleviate throat irritation.
Coughing: This method can be used only if the stones are small and easily removable. Excessive coughing can damage your throat.
Cotton swab: You can carefully use a wet cotton swab to gently loosen and push out the stones. Gargle to remove remaining debris afterward.
Medicine dropper: If the stones have a softer consistency, you can use a medicine dropper to vacuum them. Simply aim the dropper’s opening on the stones, then pinch and release the other end to create suction.
Yogurt: The probiotics found in yogurt can help eliminate the bacteria in the stones to reduce their size.
If home remedies do not work, you may need to consult your family doctor. Primary methods include coblation, which dissolves tonsil tissue, and tonsillectomy, which is the removal of your tonsils. Both procedures have their own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important that you discuss them thoroughly with your doctor first.
Other Conditions That May Affect the Tonsils
Certain conditions may be confused with tonsil stones, such as:
Tonsillitis: The main indicator of this condition is red, swollen tonsils that make swallowing difficult. It is usually caused by viruses, but Streptococcus strains may be a potential cause as well.
Strep throat: This condition is specifically caused by the Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria, which causes throat pain, swollen tonsils, painful swallowing, fever and tiny red spots at the back of your mouth.
Gum disease and tooth decay: The pain caused by tooth decay can radiate outward and affect adjacent organs such as the jaw, ears and throat. In addition, it can cause swollen tonsils due to the presence of bacteria.
Tonsil cancer: Also known as tonsil lymphoma, this condition usually causes a sore in the back of the mouth that does not heal. It also causes blood to appear, swallowing difficulties and pain in the ears and throat.
If you are having symptoms, get checked sooner rather than later.
At Family First Chiropractic we can help. Chiropractic treatments help boost the immune system.
Dr. Stephen Kelly is a Chiropractor at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness, located In Red Deer, AB 142 Erickson Dr., www.family1stchiro.ca Call 403-347-3261 to book an appointment.  

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Natural Ways to Help Prevent and Treat Post Partum Depression and Anxiety PPD/PPA

Many women have a history of depression or anxiety, women with a predisposition may have a higher chance of having postpartum depression or anxiety as a new mother. Over 80% of new mothers do not tell their healthcare provider they have postpartum depression PPD signs or post partum anxiety PPA. Many women feel shamed or they are weak if they have signs of PPD/PPA. Living up to societal expectation is hard on new mothers who question and stress over every single decision.

29.1% of women have a major depressive episode in the first year of the baby’s life.

That is almost a third of new mothers! Which means you know a new mother who may be suffering in silence.

We are not designed to mother alone, we need a village to raise a child.

Mothers that may have a birth that is less than ideal or planned will have increased stress and question the internal ‘should’. Questions mothers often beat themselves up for are possibly; ‘I should have gotten a doula’, ‘I should have done more research’, ‘I should have avoided a c-section’, ‘I should have asked for help’, ‘I should have done more’- you see the terrible cycle of ‘should’.

Most women in our society lack a social circle, which is causing PPD/PPA to be on the rise and overall in our society anxiety/depression is increasing exponentially. We expect new mothers to give birth easily, nurse and breast feed without struggle, loose the baby weight, take care of the baby, keep a clean home, make all foods from scratch, do laundry, return to regular daily activities and in some cases return to work within the first 8 weeks!
These societal expectations are ridiculous and internal and external expectations cause mothers to feel they are not adequate.

Things that can increase the chances of PPD/PPA are:
·         Food allergies, intolerances-dairy, gluten, eggs
·         Leaky gut
·         Environmental factors
·         Inflammation from food/diet sources such as sugar, dairy, processed foods
·         Poor microbiome – gut flora which links back to the leaky gut!
·         Lack of social supports- close family and extended family living close or not helping or supporting the new mother
·         Thyroid or Adrenal issues- autoimmune, increased or decreased levels
·         Lack of sunlight- this happens more in Alberta from September to April
·         Lack of community
·         Lack of time in nature
·         Low iron levels
·         Lack of regular sleep patterns

Many new mothers have a gap in care after birth, typically healthcare providers see mother for 6 weeks post partum then release them from care.
Most women with PPD/PPA go undiagnosed and some may seek help at 6 months postpartum or more.

The providers most likely to see mothers in the 6 week to 6 months + period will often be the providers giving the baby pediatric care. It is up to the provider to check in with new mothers and to watch her closely in the baby visits asking questions and checking in with her and family members on how she is feeling and looking for signs of PPD/PPA.
 One sign can be a decrease in milk supply of struggling with milk supply, this can be linked to abnormal thyroid levels, some sources state up to 60% of thyroid issues are missed prenatally.

In my practice I have seen many new mothers struggling and not knowing what to do, where to get help and having the feelings of being ‘crazy’ as society tells them that ‘its just baby blues’ ‘it will pass’ ‘all new mothers feel this way’.

Many mothers do not know how to reach out, what they need or want.

New mothers need to ask for help but do not know how!

What you can do is help her write a list of chores, food allergies, preferences, grocery lists, or whatever help the mother may need or want after the baby comes. This should continue for 3 months post partum, not just in the first 2 weeks. If there are multiple children this is needed MUCH more. Women need more help with the 2,3,4th etc children – do not think ‘she knows what she’s doing she has had a baby before’.

Doing a phone food ‘train’ is a wonderful way to help new mothers. Check out www.mealtrain.com for a great way to set up meals for the family. Try to

If you are to do this you MUST have clear rules such as:
·         No visiting or staying for a ‘quick visit’
·         No expecting the new mom to ‘entertain’
·         You can only stay for mom to shower and bathe then you must leave
·         You must do one chore on the prewritten chore list
·         Leave the food at the door, ring the bell and leave

Supplements and treatments to take during pregnancy to help reduce the chances of PPD/PPA
·         Methylfolate 800 mcg per
·         Prenatal vitamin
·         B12 1200mcg per day
·         Essential fatty acids -EFA
·         Vitamin D3 2000 IU per day – must take with a fat to absorb
·         Good quality protein in the diet
·         Good fats in the diet such as avocado or coconut oil
·         Prenatal Yoga
·         Probiotics
·         Exercise
·         Ginger and turmeric- Golden milk is great

Things to do postpartum to treat and prevent PPA and PPD
·         Prenatal vitamins- continue to take them after baby arrives
·         Use a lightbox for 20-30 minutes in the morning
·         Yoga-postnatal or Mom and Baby yoga classes
·         CBT – seek care with a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist –Alberta Mental Health http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/services/page15072.aspx

·         Elimination of inflammatory foods from the diet
·         Increased good quality protein
·         Look at the thyroid hormones and ask for blood work
·         B Complex
·         Vitamin D3 2000 IU perday
·         Magnesium
·         Iron if your bloodwork is low
·         Placenta encapsulation- this will help with low iron
·         B12
·         Omega 3 EFA
·         Methylfolate 800 mcg /day
·         SAM- E – 400 mg per day or if needed 800 mg /day *do not take if diagnosed with Bipolar or post partum psychosis*
·         Probiotics with Lactobacillus and Bifidus
·         Exercise
·         Restorative yoga
·         Sleep when baby sleeps – sleep banking!!
·         St Johns Wort
·         Lavender extracts
·         Motherwort – this herb is called Heart of a Lion and supports the female hormones
·         Rhodiola is an adaptogen herb which helps with lack of sleep and concentration *do not use if diagnosed with bipolar depression*
·         Siberian ginseng ½ teaspoon – helps to increase breast milk production
·         Macca root
·         Organ meats
·         Lysine
·         Warming spices such as Ginger and Tumeric again the Golden milk is fantastic!

For more information check our  website www.family1stchiro.ca, facebook,  blogs, Instagram and Twitter or call our clinic at 403-347-3261 for Dr. Joelle Johnson to assist you or to book an appointment.Family First Chiropractic and Wellness, 142 Erickson Drive, Red Deer, T4R2C3.