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Body Pain

Shin Splints

Shin splints are characterized by pain in the front part of the lower leg. It occurs on the inside edge of the large bone there — the tibia. This condition is common in runners, but can also occur in other physically active people. Shin splints usually happen during or after a change in the intensity of physical activity, such as running more miles or more frequently. Shin splints are not a standard medical diagnosis. The condition may also be called medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS), anterior tibial pain or exercise-induced leg pain. Causes of Shin Splints Shin splints are very common among professional and recreational athletes, especially runners, military recruits and dancers. Overuse of the leg muscles — without taking enough time to rest and heal — can lead to inflammation or swelling of the tendons, muscles or tissue covering the shin. This causes pain along the front of the shin. Symptoms range from a dull, tight feeling to a sharp pain along the shin. Several factors increase your chance of developing shin splints, such as: Running long distances or on hills or uneven surfaces Training incorrectly or too much Switching your routine Wearing the wrong shoes Not warming up properly Foot problems In addition to excessive training, other conditions can also lead to pain in the shins, such as: Flat feet A very rigid arch of the foot Chronic anterior compartment syndrome (when the large muscle on the front of the lower leg becomes too large for the tissue that surrounds it) Stress fractures Chiropractic Care for Shin Splints Shin splints will often go away with basic therapy, which involves: Rest Ice Massage Rehabilitation exercises Stretching Kinesio taping However, if the shin splits don't clear up quickly, your chiropractor will look for other problems that may be contributing to the pain. This includes examining your spine, hips, knees and feet for misalignments. One problem with the foot that can lead to shin splints is over pronation — or “rolling in” of the foot. This condition causes overstretching in the shin muscles. If this is the case, your chiropractor may prescribe a foot orthotic for you. This will adjust how your foot strikes the ground. Your chiropractor may also make adjustments in your foot joints, ankle, knee, SI joint or low back. This can relieve the pain from shin splints, or prevent them from happening again. If you have shin splints, look for a chiropractor who specializes in treating sports injuries and conditions. This will help you return to your regular training program.

TMJ

The temporomandibular joint connects the jawbone to the skull. Up to 10 million people suffer from painful temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Symptoms include pain in the face and neck, locked jaw or limited jaw movement, painful clicking when moving the mouth, dizziness, difficulty chewing or swallowing and a change in the way the teeth fit together. TMD is about four times more common in women than men. Causes TMD has many causes, some physical, some emotional. A jaw injury, such as one caused by a car accident or being hit hard by a ball, can lead to TMD. Degenerative joint disease is another leading physical cause of TMD. Emotional stress can cause behaviors that lead to TMD, such as clenching the jaw or grinding the teeth. Conventional Treatment You can manage TMD through medications or lifestyle interventions. Your doctor may recommend muscle relaxants or pain relievers. Certain types of antidepressants also relieve pain. If you clench your teeth at night, aggravating your TMD pain, your doctor might prescribe a sedative. These medications bring along a variety of side effects. Other interventions don’t require drugs. Rest your jaws by eating soup or soft food. Avoid chewing gum. Firm or soft bite guards sometimes relieve pain, and keep you from grinding your teeth at night. Ice packs or moist heat can help. A physical therapist can teach you exercises to strengthen and stretch your jaw muscles. If stress and anxiety are the cause of your TMD, try relaxation techniques. Mindfulness meditation, acupuncture, biofeedback, talking to a counselor or massage might help. In extreme cases, some doctors recommend surgery to repair this joint. Chiropractic Care and TMJ Some patients with TMD find relief through chiropractic care. A chiropractor can manipulate your neck and jaw to improve alignment and relax muscle tension. Many chiropractors will also recommend special exercises, hot and cold treatment and other non-pharmaceutical interventions. Your chiropractor might team up with your dentist to provide the best care. If you’re suffering from TMD, call us today so we can help ease your jaw pain.

Plantar Fasciitis

About 90 percent of people will recover from plantar fasciitis within a few months following conservative treatment. Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common explanations of heel pain. It is caused by inflammation to the thick band that connects the toes to the heel bone, called the plantar fascia, which runs across the bottom of your foot. The condition is most commonly seen in runners, pregnant women, overweight people, and individuals who wear inadequately supporting shoes. Plantar fasciitis typically affects people between the ages of 40 and 70. Symptoms Plantar fasciitis commonly causes a stabbing pain in the heel of the foot, which is worse during the first few steps of the day after awakening. As you continue to walk on the affected foot, the pain gradually lessens. Usually, only one foot is affected, but it can occur in both feet simultaneously. Diagnosis To diagnose plantar fasciitis, your doctor will physically examine your foot by testing your reflexes, balance, coordination, muscle strength, and muscle tone. Your doctor may also advise a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or X-ray to rule out other others sources of your pain, such as a pinched nerve, stress fracture, or bone spur. Treatment Treatment for plantar fasciitis includes chiropractic care, medication, physical therapy, shock wave therapy, or surgery. Medications Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen and naproxen are used to treat the inflammation and pain of plantar fasciitis, but they won't cure the condition. Corticosteroids can also be used to ease pain and reduce inflammation. Corticosteroids are applied either as a topical solution in conjunction with a non-painful electric current or through injections to the affected area. Physical Therapy Stretching exercises for the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia are recommend to relieve pain and aid in the healing process. Sometimes application of athletic tape is recommended. In moderate or severe cases of plantar fasciitis, your doctor may recommend you wearing a night splint, which will stretch the arch of your foot and calf while you sleep. This helps to lengthen the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia for symptom relief. Depending on the severity of your plantar fasciitis, your physician may prescribe a store-bought orthotic (arch support) or custom-fitted orthotic to help distribute your foot pressure more evenly. Surgery and Other Procedures When more conservative methods have failed to reduce plantar fasciitis pain, your doctor may suggest extracorporeal shock wave therapy, which is used to treat chronic plantar fasciitis. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy uses sound waves to stimulate healing, but may cause bruises, numbness, tingling, swelling, and pain. When all else fails, surgery may be recommended to detach the plantar fascia from the heel bone. Few people need surgery to treat the condition. Home Remedies Stretching your plantar fasciitis is something you can do at home to relieve pain and speed healing. Ice massage performed three to four times per day in 15 to 20 minute intervals is also something you can do to reduce inflammation and pain. Placing arch supports in your shoes absorbs shock and takes pressure off the plantar fascia.

Osteoarthritis

atients will find that chiropractic care for hip and knee osteoarthritis can help reduce inflammation, improve joint functioning, reduce pain, and strengthen the muscles around the affected joints.

Osteoarthritis in the knee and hip areas can be a very painful injury, and one that is often a chronic condition if left untreated. Chiropractic care for hip osteoarthritis and knee osteoarthritis can be very helpful for patients who have been unable to find relief from the pain in any other way.

Symptoms

Signs of hip osteoarthritis and knee osteoarthritis include an increasing level of pain in the hip area that may extend into the groin area, pain shooting down the thighs, and pain in the knee joints. It is not uncommon for the knees to be the first place the pain is felt, and some patients may not notice the hip pain until later. The pain often increases when the weather is colder, or when the patient is engaged in physical activity like jogging or walking.

Therapy

Chiropractors use very gentle spinal adjustments to place the spinal column in proper alignment, which has a positive effect on the hip joints that are connected to the spine. While hip and knee osteoarthritis is not curable at this time, it is very much manageable with the help of chiropractic care.

Treatment

Knee osteoarthritis can also be managed very effectively with the help of chiropractic care. The treatments for both knee and hip osteoarthritis may be similar, and can include stretching, massage, gentle manipulation of any painful joints, and the use of ultrasound for healing.

Knee Pain

Knee pain is common in people of all ages. It may start suddenly — such as after exercise or an injury. But it can also develop over time, starting out as minor discomfort. Chiropractic care for knee pain includes first identifying the underlying cause of the pain, which could be an injury, mechanical problem or some kind of arthritis. Once this is known, the chiropractor can determine the best treatment for the pain. Causes of Knee Pain There are three main types of problems that can lead to pain in the knee. Injuries Damaging any part of the knee may cause pain. These parts include: The structures that surround the knee — the ligaments, tendons and fluid-filled sacs The parts of the knee itself — ligaments, cartilage and bones Some of the most common knee injuries include: Tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) Tearing of the meniscus. The shock absorbing cartilage between the bones of the shin and thigh Knee bursitis. Inflammation of the fluid-filled sacs that cushion the knee Patellar tendinitis. Inflammation of the tendons that connect the muscles to the bones Mechanical problems Changes in how the knee works can lead to pain in the knee, such as: Iliotibial band syndrome. Tightening of the ligament that runs from the pelvic bone to the outside of the tibia, which can cause it to rub on the outside of the thigh bone Dislocated kneecap. This happens when the kneecap (patella) slips out of place. Hip or foot pain. These can change how you walk and lead to more stress on the knee. Arthritis There are many different types of arthritis that can cause swelling and pain in the knee, including: Osteoarthritis Rheumatoid arthritis Gout Septic arthritis How Chiropractic Care Relieves Knee Pain Chiropractors will first do a thorough physical examination. This will enable them to identity the underlying cause of the knee pain. Even though the pain is located in the knee, the problem can lie elsewhere in the body. For example, runners often complain of a tight iliotibial (IT) band — a common condition for them. This, however, may be caused by weakness in certain muscles, which makes them walk or run unevenly. In order to stabilize the joints, the IT band has to work harder. Over time, this may cause it to tighten and lead to knee pain. Chiropractic care may be able to relieve knee pain, especially when combined with standard medical care. Spine and joint manipulation can improve the functioning of the knee by: Returning the spine to normal movement Relaxing the muscles of the body Increasing the range of motion in the knee Improving the coordination of joints, especially the ankle, knee and hips Reducing other problems in the body that may be contributing to pain in the knee Chiropractors may also use other techniques to reduce inflammation in the knee that is causing pain, such as ultrasound therapy or ice massage. They may also apply special kinds of tape to the body to treat ligament injuries. This helps stabilize the problem area and reduce inflammation. Relief From Knee Pain and Overall Health Excessive knee pain can often lead to people avoiding certain activities, such as walking, running or biking. Over time, the lack of physical activity can lead to other health problems and may aggravate the pain in the knee. Early treatment of knee pain, along with the underlying causes, can help people return to their normal activities sooner. This will improve their health both in the short and long term. It will also allow athletes to return to their training and competitions.

Pinched Nerve

When nerves become 'pinched', injury, spasm, and inflammation of the surrounding muscles causes the nerve to become compressed, resulting in pain. The term "pinched nerve" is somewhat of a catch-all phrase that is commonly used to describe the pain associated with a variety of conditions from subluxations, to tunnel syndromes to the referred pain from trigger points. Most of the time, what is called a pinched nerve is actually an irritated, or inflamed nerve where the nerve itself is not actually pinched. In most cases, nerves become irritated and inflamed when the bones, joints or muscles of the spine are not in their proper position, or are not moving properly. This condition is called a "subluxation", the treatment of which is the specialty of the doctor of chiropractic. There are instances when nerves do become 'pinched', such as in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Sciatica and Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. In each of these cases, injury, spasm or inflammation of the surrounding muscles and connective tissue causes the nerve to become compressed, resulting in pain. These conditions are referred to as "tunnel syndromes." Treating tunnel syndromes is more complex than treating a simple spinal subluxation, but they usually respond very well to chiropractic care; especially when combined with other physical therapies, such as exercises and stretches. Trigger points are very tight "knots" of muscle that form when muscles are either chronically overworked or injured, and are often experienced as a pinching or burning pain. Trigger points will commonly cause pain that radiates to other parts of the body, which is also known as referred pain. The successful treatment of trigger points usually requires a combination of chiropractic care, stretching and a form of deep tissue massage called 'trigger point therapy.' It is very important that the cause of any form of pain be properly diagnosed. This is especially important when nerves are affected as severe or long term irritation, or compression, of a nerve can lead to permanent nerve damage. If you have been told that you have a "pinched nerve" it is very important that you seek professional care from a doctor of chiropractic as soon as possible. Contact us today!
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