Tuesday, April 25, 2017

CranioSacral Therapy and Babies

CranioSacral Therapy and Babies

Your baby crying immediately alerts you that there is something wrong in his or her world.
Is your newborn hungry? Tired? Needing a diaper change? Too Cold? Too hot? In pain?
Many first time parents find this guessing game a challenge but gradually as a routine establishes they learn to recognise what their baby’s cry means and how to satisfy their needs.  But what if you have done everything (including checking with doctor or health nurse) and your baby is still crying? Are there other reasons which cause your baby’s distress?
While CranioSacral therapy is of benefit to all babies it is especially helpful to a crying, upset and distressed baby. In my experience the following are the top three reasons for the distress that leads to your infant crying:
1.    Problems arising from the birth process.
2.    Problems with feeding and digesting.
3.    Problems with sleeping.
Infants may have one, or a combination, of the above problems to cause their crying. Let’s look at each one in turn and explore them further. You may recognise aspects of the problems that relate to your infant and why he/she is crying.
1. The Birth Process
If there has been intervention during the birth (induction, caesarean section, vacuum or forceps) or a long and heavy labour – this, in some cases, may have an ill effect on the infant’s head and back. The bones of the skull and spine, the nerves and membranes are moved out of their correct position and so cause the infant discomfort.

While these interventions were necessary for the infant’s safe delivery the excess force can override the baby’s natural ability to allow these bones to slip back into their correct position. If this is a problem for your infant you may notice that your infant tends to turn only in one direction, doesn’t like to lie flat, wants to be held in an upright position or that there are obvious bumps, cone shape or depressions on the head. Some moms notice bruising or marks at side of the head.
When these restrictions are released with the subtle touch of Craniosacral therapy - the baby is happier, sleeps and feeds better and so doesn’t need to cry.
2.  Feeding and digesting
As your infant learns to suck, swallow and breathe - their feeding pattern becomes established. Problems arise when there is a difficulty with any one of these steps. You may notice that your infant is not latching on correctly and is just using the lips to suck. This may cause sore nipples for mum and is not helping with milk flow.

In a Craniosacral treatment I would check that the bones in the mouth are free moving and this then corrects the suck. This is done with a gloved finger in the mouth and works on the bones of the palate as the baby is sucking. Often, it is this final correction done by the Craniosacral therapist that completes the process and allows the baby to feed easily.
3.  Problems with Sleeping
Infants need lots of sleep. Look out for the signs of a sleepy infant (rubbing eyes) and always finish feeding, burping and diaper change before settling baby to sleep. Swaddling your infant provides security and helps him/her fall to sleep but check that they are not too hot. Some infants like to stay close to mom for the first few weeks but it pays to establish a good routine of putting baby into the crib to sleep when you both feel ready.

Some infants may still have difficulty getting to sleep despite mom and dad doing all of the above. Many of these children would have had a difficult birth and go on to develop problems with both feeding and sleeping before I first see them.
When I treat these children I check for any areas of tightness in their body. As these release the baby sighs and relaxes. If the birth has been distressing, we take time to check the effect this has had on the infant, mom (and dad too) if needed. This helps with the bonding process which in turn helps baby to feel more secure and mom to feel more competent. It is common for baby to sleep for a long time after a Craniosacral treatment.  Many parents report that they have had their first night sleep following a Craniosacral treatment.
In summary
While it is ideal to get your infant’s crying problems sorted out as soon as possible after their birth, it is also possible to address these difficulties at any stage throughout your child’s development. I have found, through working with many upset babies – that Craniosacral therapy is a very gentle and effective way of getting baby more comfortable – and providing mom and dad with a practical way of dealing with the distress that leads to crying.

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

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Osteoporosis- the silent thief

What is Osteoporosis
Our bones are living tissue that are continuously being broken done and replaced. Osteoblasts builds bone and Osteoclasts break down bone. Osteoporosis happens when the building of new bone can’t keep up with the removal of old bone tissue. The causes extreme bone loss. Bones become severely weak and brittle. Simple bending or twisting motion with patients with osteoporosis could cause bones to completely fracture. Even coughing could cause stress fractures amongst these patients. Highest risk areas are hip, wrist and spine. Also weight bearing bones such as the pelvis, femur and lumbar vertebrae are mainly affected by Osteoporosis.
Facts and Statistics
Fractures from osteoporosis are more common than heart attack, stroke and breast cancer combined. 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men will suffer from an osteoporotic fracture in their lifetime. Over 80% of fractures over the age of 50 are caused by osteoporosis and amongst these patients they were never offered proper screening or treatment post fracture. Each year osteoporosis causes 70-90% of 30,000 hip fractures in Canada. Each hip fracture costs the $21,285 in the first year of hospitalization and $44,156 if the patient is institutionalized. According to Osteoporosis Canada the overall cost in 2010 to our health care system while treating osteoporosis and fractures in Canada is a staggering $2.3 billion. This includes acute care costs, prescription drugs and out care costs. The cost is expected to rise to $3.9 billion as of 2012. Due to the proportion of Canadians were assumed to be living in long term facilities because of osteoporosis.
High risk Areas
Highest risk for fractures due to osteoporosis are hips, wrists and spine. Just as importantly weight bearing bones such as the pelvis, femur and lumbar vertebrae are also at risk with osteoporosis.
Men versus Woman
Women and men alike begin to lose bone in their mid 30’s. However, woman as they approach menopause lose bone at a greater rate, from 2 to 3 percent per year, this is due to the lack of estrogen during perimenopause and menopause as woman approach the age of 40.
Symptoms of Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is often called the “silent thief” because over time become porous without any symptoms. Patients will not know that they have osteoporosis until bones become so weak and brittle. That simple stress on the body such as bending over or even simply coughing can cause a complete fracture. In addition, fractured vertebral body could cause the vertebrae to collapse. Collapsed vertebrae may initially cause low back pain, loss of height or spinal deformities such as stooped posture. Loss of 2cm (3/4”) as measured by healthcare provider or 6 cm (2 ½”) overall from when patient was younger may also indicate spinal fracture.
Since they are few symptoms alerting patients that they are developing osteoporosis, Bone Mineral Density (BMD) are used as safe, painless and accurate way to measure density of bones. BMD tests can tell a patient if they have osteoporosis or not and how likely they will develop this disease in the future. This important information can help a patient make decisions to prevent falls or further bone loss.
Osteoporosis is the most commonly developed because of lack of exercise. Weight bearing exercises like walking with wrist and/or ankle weights is a safe way to avoid and treat the disease. Performing balance exercises to improve balance and coordination and walking with walking poles, can help prevent falls and fractures. Nutrition is another, adequate amount of calcium, and vitamin D is needed to maintain bone health. For those over 50, Canada food guide recommends 3 servings of milk and alternatives (2 servings for adults)-yogurt, cheese, puddings and calcium fortified beverages. If your lactose intolerant or prefer avoiding dairy, try soy, almond and rice beverages. When adding supplements, the recommended dose for patients between the age of 19 to 50 is 1000mg, 50+ 1200mg this includes for pregnant or lactating woman is 1000mg. An important nutrient that protects patients against falls and fractures is vitamin D. It helps build stronger bones by increasing the absorption of calcium and improves muscle function. This will help balance and coordination to prevent falls. Osteoporosis Canada recommends routine vitamin D supplementation for Canadian adults year round. Adults between the 19-50 years of age,
including pregnant or breast feeding women, require 400-1000 IU daily. Those over 50 or younger adults that are at a high risk whether with osteoporosis, multiple fractures or a condition that affect vitamin D absorption. Should intake 800-2000 IU daily. If taking over 2000 IU of vitamin D daily should be done under medical supervision. Combination of weight bearing exercises and proper nutrition will benefit your body and keep your bones healthy.
At Family First Chiropractic and Wellness Dr. Elton Clemence, D.C can help patients with Osteoporosis. We use non-surgical and hands, nutrition advice and exercise plans when treating Osteoporosis and it related injuries. For more information on Osteoporosis, or to schedule an appointment, please contact Family First Chiropractic and Wellness.
Dr. Elton Clemence is a Chiropractor at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness, located In Red Deer, AB 142 Erickson Dr ,www.family1stchiro.ca 403-347-3261 to book an appointment.

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

The Benefits of Massage

Massage is ideal for all people and body types. The benefits of massage are experienced universally, although the benefits are different for each individual. Massage can help with stress relief, varying pain relief, muscle tension, myofascial pain, as well as many other complaints. There are many varieties of massage, including Swedish, sports-directed, myofascial, trigger point, and deep tissue. Massage can also help alleviate symptoms from headaches, fibromyalgia and soft tissue strains. Massage is known to be beneficial both before and after sports competitions. Your skeletal system is also positively affected-although indirectly- by massage.  Massage helps to bring blood and nutrients to the bones and alleviate joint stiffness. Another system that is positively affected by massage is the respiratory system. Massage can help relieve congestion in the lungs and chest, and as a result of this reduced congestion, will reduce the energy expending when breathing.