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Another health problem that chiropractic can help with? Snoring. Yes, snoring!
I get a lot of complaints about snoring (usually from the spouse of the patient and not the patient themselves!) and I wanted to share the ways in which chiropractic care can help with snoring/sleep apnea/sinus issues. Snoring and sleep apnea also lead to other more serious problems, including lack of oxygen and periods of non-breathing in the night, so it is important to get a handle on this health condition!
Sleep apnea and snoring can be caused by a number of factors, including sleeping position, weight gain, inflammation, dental structure, and more, but I am going to discuss the neuro-musculoskeletal contributors to this problem, and how chiropractic can help.
The mouth, nose, and throat are surrounded by multiple structures, including many muscles (as seen below), ligaments, and lymphatic and blood vessels, and are also backed by the vertebrae of the cervical spine (neck). Oftentimes, there are imbalances and blockages in these structures. Cervical vertebrae can become misaligned, which places excess pressure on some of the soft tissues and air passageways. Musculoskeletal imbalances in the head and neck also contribute to lymphatic (waste) drainage blockage, which results in the sinuses improperly draining or getting congested, which is also a causative factor in snoring. Chiropractic adjustments aid in balancing the musculoskeletal system and relieving pressure on the air passageways.
Chiropractic care also optimizes nervous system function which positively affects breathing patterns, since breathing is under nervous system control. I also check the hyoid bone, a small bone in the front of the neck that often gets shifted due to muscular imbalance, thus also possibly compressing structures housed in the neck. Cranial bone balance is important as well since the cranial bones are highly related to breathing, sinus elimination, and neck alignment. With muscle testing and chiropractic techniques, we also work on cranial bone balance.
As you can see, we could spend a lot of time just on checking for and treating things in the head and neck, therefore making snoring/sleep apnea another health condition for holistic chiropractic care!
My kind, funny, musically-talented and holistic-chiropractic-care-loving patient Joe stopped by for his treatment last week here at Synergy Chiropractic. Joe is very much in tune with his body, and we always have a good time together helping his body to function optimally from a structural, biochemical/nutritional, and emotional/mental place.
Joe has high-functioning autism, meaning he is at the milder end of the autism spectrum. Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by challenges with social interaction and communication. Symptoms range from mild to severe. There is a wide range of causes and contributors to autism, including genetic factors, immune system stressors, neurological imbalances, environmental neurotoxins and chemical pollutants, food sensitivities, emotional stressors, and more.
With holistic chiropractic kinesiology, we can work on all of these factors. With Joe, I treat him as I would any other patient, using muscle testing to prioritize his particular treatment needs.
We assess the presence of spinal misalignments and correct them via chiropractic manipulation, pelvic blocking, activator methods, and more. This increases functioning of the brain and nervous system and eliminates interference in neurological signaling. The central nervous system controls every organ and function of the body, and since chiropractic greatly affects the nervous system, it can positively affect all bodily functions. We assess and work on any biochemical factors such as infections, toxins, heavy metals, electromagnetic disturbances, food sensitivities, and more, and help to reduce them and their effects in the body. We also do some mind/body work to address any negative effects that the mind and any emotional stressors may have on the body’s performance and functioning.
At first, Joe was apprehensive before I would perform an adjustment. However, we have had the opportunity to develop a strong confidence bond and Joe knows how much adjustments bring him relief. And his smile, when I’m done, is priceless!
Joe is so in tune with his body, that towards the end of our session together, he goes through his own inventory and flags any particular issues that still need some care. A true team effort between doctor and patient!
I love working with kids and teens, and I truly enjoy working with Joe and his mother! Joe is a wonderful patient, who strives to make changes in his life to increase his health and overall well-being, changes that are synergistic to our treatments here in the office.
Joe is a great example that chiropractic care can greatly help quality of life in any patient with autism, and support them as they strive to increase their ability to live a rich and happy life.