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It's Webster Wednesday here at the office! Today my friend and patient Claudia came in for some prenatal holistic chiropractic care. 

Claudia is 5.5 months pregnant with her baby boy and has been experiencing excruciating lower back and sacrum area pain along with complaints that her walk already feels like a difficult waddle.

Last month, I attended a prenatal and perinatal chiropractic care with Webster Certification seminar in Vancouver, BC. Today, I was beyond thrilled to put my new skills in caring for pregnant women to work.

Webster technique is a chiropractic analysis and treatment technique that has many, many benefits, including:

*decreased physical pain, often associated with pregnancy
*increased spinal alignment particularly of the lower back, hips, and pelvis, offering greater potential for optimal positioning of baby in the uterus
*increased nervous system functioning of both mother and baby
*increased pelvic and core muscle tone, which assists in birthing
*increased blood flow and healing
*decreased uterus torsion
*a more balanced sympathetic (fight or flight) and parasympathetic (rest, heal, digest) nervous system 
*stress reduction for both mother and baby
*reduced labor times and pain, as revealed in research study done by Dr. Joan Fallon

With Claudia, we had GREAT results. Claudia came in with a reported 6/10 lower back pain (10 being at its worst), and left with zero back pain. None! She also felt that her gait improved and became much more smooth. Then there are of course there are all of the many benefits that may not be perceived immediately upon care, but that are happening from the moment we begin the treatment.

We plan to treat Claudia at least once a month until the baby arrives, and then after the baby arrives. 

Many thanks to Claudia for including chiropractic in her prenatal care regimen. She has dedicated the time and energy to make this a part of her health program, and I am grateful to be her chiropractor!

Last week, I attended the DC film premier of Magic Pills: Homeopathy, Promise or Placebo?, a film by homeopath, filmmaker, writer, and health choice advocator Ananda More. The event was hosted by Americans for Homeopathy Choice as part of the April 8-10th event Homeopathy on the Hill, an event during which individuals informed members of Congress on the benefits of homeopathy and protecting the right of Americans to choose homeopathy, and to raise public awareness on homeopathy.
As many of you know, I utilize homeopathic medicine personally and in my office with my patients as well. I am an advocate for homeopathic medicine.
Homeopathic medicine is one of the most widely used alternative medicines in the world, yet despite its safety, effectiveness, and popularity, it has come under scrutiny and criticism. Behind this is bias and assumptions, refusal of medical journals to publish studies supporting homeopathy, and attack on homeopathy by big business and umbrella organizations.
Ananda More's documentary revealed new scientific discoveries and real-world successes to challenge these biases and attacks.
I have to say, the film exceeded my expectations. These real world successes included the use of homeopathic medicine in Africa to help thousands of HIV/AIDS patients, to Cuba, where homeopathic medicine stopped an epidemic in just weeks, to people who are successfully treating brain tumors, cancer, and other diseases with homeopathic medicine.
In this film, homeopathic medicine was not seen in opposition to allopathic medicine, but rather was often used in conjunction as a synergistic approach. Medical doctors worked with homeopathic doctors to obtain the best possible outcomes for their patients. Both forms of medicine were seen as legally recognized and valued. I would love to see more of this.
I myself have seen homeopathic remedies work wonders, and I know many of my patients and fellow colleagues have as well. Please comment below if you feel moved to do so if you have had a success or know of one with homeopathic medicine!
I highly recommend this film to anyone seeking to learn more about this amazing, hundreds of years old form of medicine.
 
 

This latest post is with my patient Shayla, and it's all about working on lower core! First, a happy thanks to Shayla for posing with me and agreeing to share some of the work we do together. 

Shayla came to me with one of the most common issues we all hear about-lower back pain. In Shayla's case, one element we really need to work on is her core strength particularly lower core. 

The muscles of the lower core include portions of the rectus abdominus (the six pack abs), the obliques, the transverse abdominus, pelvic floor muscles, and more. These muscles, when engaged properly, offer fundamental support and stability to the spine, which is critical in preventing lower back issues and pain.

So how do we strengthen the core? In the office, I have learned how to muscle test all of the various sections of the abomdinals (thank you, Dr. Timothy Francis) to determine which ones are firing properly and which ones aren't. The different core muscles may not be working well for a number of reasons. These reasons include-spinal misalignment, musculoskeletal imbalance, gastro-intestinal issues and inflammation, cranial (skull) faults/misalignments, emotional stresses for example fear and mistrust as well as others, and more. 

Once we have identified the inhibited core muscles with muscle testing, we can treat them with spinal manipulation, muscle therapy, reflex point and organ system work, lymphatic points, mind-body techniques, homeopathic remedies, and a number of other holistic health techniques.

Only then, when the patient returns home to their regular exercise or core work that they do, will the muscles neurologically now fire correctly! The core exercises will then be much more effective, and the back pain will be on its way to resolution. 

These days, Shayla barely mentions her lower back. Maybe a tweak here or a tweak there, but all in all, she's doing fabulous, and this work is part of the reason why. Thank you to my awesome patient Shayla!

 

Shayla and Dr. Amanda

Muscle testing Shayla's core muscles 

In 2011, Learning how to muscle test the abdominal muscles with Dr. Timothy Francis

One of my incredible patients recently recommended this book to me, and I think it's a must read for everyone! It's called "Heal Your Body- The Mental Causes for Physical Illness and the Metaphysical Way to Overcome Them", by Louise Hay.
This little book helps the reader to become more than just a bystander or even a victim to their health challenges and rather encourages us to be more connected to our bodies and and to contribute to our own healing process.
We look at health as a triad of physical, chemical, and mental factors. This means we must address all three of these aspects to fully heal and resolve any ailment that we have.
Generally, every mental/emotional thought pattern takes a physical manifestation in the body. Positive thought patterns result in positive experiences and overall health and well-being. Negative thought patterns result in negative experiences and overall dis-ease. This is a simplified yet true summary.
In this book, Louise Hay presents an extremely helpful quick reference guide and chart of Problem/Probable Cause/Healing Affirmation. She lists the symptom or illness, followed by the probable emotional/mental cause, finally followed by a healing affirmation to aid in resolving the mental/emotional cause of this issue.
Healing affirmations are positive statements that can help us to overcome self-sabotaging and negative thoughts (which also wreak havoc on our bodies). A healing affirmation uses the power of thought and word to create more positive experiences in mind and body both. Metaphysical causation is the word for the power in thought and word that creates experiences. Healing affirmations can be spoken or written.
Some examples from her chart:
Problem:
lower back problems
Probably Emotional Cause:fear of money
Healing Affirmation:I trust the process of life. All I need is always taken care of. I am safe.
Problem: hip problems
Probable Cause: fear of going forward in major decisions, nothing to move forward to
Healing Affirmation: I am in perfect balance. I move forward with ease and with joy at every age.
Problem: High blood pressure
Probable Cause: Long standing emotional problem not solved
Healing Affirmation: I joyously release the past. I am at peace.
The mental/emotional component is just a part of the whole picture (there is structural and biochemical as well of course), but it is an important one that is often overlooked. I highly recommend grabbing Louise Hay's book to take part in helping with this aspect of health!
 
This past weekend, I attended one of the most informative, significant, and inspirational seminars I have attended to date. I attended a Perinatal Care with Webster Technique Certification Seminar through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, where I expanded my knowledge and learned the advanced skills to reach and care for both pregnant women and their babies.

One of the most important times for a woman to be adjusted is throughout her pregnancy. One of the most important times for anyone to be adjusted is as a newborn. Why is this? Let me go into more detail. 

During pregnancy, the body is going through rapid changes and growth. Oftentimes, the hips/pelvis (and entire spine really) is or can become imbalanced. This can lead to uterine tension which can restrict the baby's movement and even contribute to a compromised position of the baby in the uterus. It can also cause the mother pain and discomfort. There may also be decreased uterine and pelvic muscle tone/expulsion force which can slow down or contribute to a difficult labor. In addition, many pregnant women experience daily life stresses or added stresses associated with pregnancy, which can cause decreased blood and oxygen flow to the uterus and baby, and expose the baby to stress hormones at a delicate time. 

Chiropractic care can greatly help with all of these. The Webster Technique, which I learned this past weekend, is a system of chiropractic analysis and adjustive techniques which reduces nervous system stress, balances the mothers hips/pelvis structure, muscles and ligaments, and optimizes the mothers pelvic function in pregnancy and birth. 

Moreover, chiropractic care can reduce nervous system stress thus enhancing organ and muscle function, alleviating spinal tension, decreasing sympathetic (fight or flight high stress mode) and increasing parasympathetic (rest, heal, and digest mode), restoring normal pelvic muscle tone and balance, and offering the best physiological environment for the baby to assume an optimal position for birth. 

Why should infants receive chiropractic care? Our very first spinal misalignments often occur during the birthing process, often from mechanical forces to the baby. Gentle chiropractic care can immediately support spinal alignment and nervous system function in infants, which can in turn improve a multitude a possible issues, including colic, difficulty breastfeeding, reflux, skin issues, insomnia, torticollis, intestinal issues, and more. Based on large chiropractic reporting surveys, the three most common improvements noticed by parents in their children who are undergoing chiropractic care is improved disposition, improved immune function, and improved sleep. Here is one research study supporting the safety and effectiveness of pediatric chiropractic care. 

http://icpa4kids.org/Chiropractic-Research/treatment-related-aggravations-complications-and-improvements-attributed-to-chiropractic-spinal-manipulative-therapy-of-pediatric-patients-a-practice-based-survey-of-practitioners.html?fbclid=IwAR03xqo3rS_X3Xs7RVb0PKW_oP1KvXFdXkabiAntdDYnIz62hNkcORHaSUw

Many women today may associate pregnancy and labor/birthing as uncomfortable, painful, scary, difficult, and a number of other things. The truth is that women's bodies are designed for pregnancy and birth, and it can be both comfortable and safe. Chiropractic offers supportive, natural care that trusts this important truth and empowers women to know and embrace this truth as well. 

I look forward to implementing more care for pregnant women, infants and children into my practice after this wonderful weekend. Thank you all for reading!

 

 

Assessing the pelvis

Gentle adjustment of a woman who is 38 weeks pregnant

Working the round ligament of the uterus 

Working the round ligament of the uterus

 

International Chiropractic Pediatric Association

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