More than just back pain
More than just back pain
Dr Megan Azer, Chiropractor and NET Practitioner
When you hear the word chiropractor, most people will immediately think of back pain and neck pain. Although it is true that chiropractors can aid in the management of these ailments, the benefits of chiropractic care go far deeper into one’s overall health and wellbeing. My priority for my clients is to assess overall function, rather than only focusing on symptoms. I discuss with clients that pain isn’t always the best indicator of what’s going on for the body, which is why we do a range of tests to assess overall function.
For most, the year has got off to a busy start and many people will naturally be feeling more run down and lethargic as stress begins to build. Although many people originally seek chiropractic care because of back pain and other similar ailments, they may also find that with treatment their energy levels rise as their stress decreases. When you come to see me for a consult, I can also assess whether your pain is originating from a structural cause or if stress is having an impact. By using a technique called Neuro Emotional Technique (NET), we can decrease the physiology of the stress pattern occurring in your body, which may result in more long-term relief from pain.
The function of the nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves) is to send messages to every muscle, organ and tissue in our body. It regulates the function of all the body systems. The role of the spine is not only to provide movement, but more importantly to protect the delicate spinal cord from damage. When spinal misalignments put pressure on this system, the nerves can become ‘choked’ or ‘pinched’. This may result in various symptoms other than physical pain.
Spinal misalignments are commonly thought to be caused only by physical stress. The truth is that there are other important lifestyle factors that can influence our health. These include nutritional, chemical and emotional stresses.
Nutritional stress may occur when we’re consuming a poor diet, such as one including excess fatty foods and sugars, or our diet is lacking in certain vitamins and minerals. For example, from a musculoskeletal and emotional perspective, I might look at magnesium. This mineral is one of the most essential for our body. If you’re deficient in magnesium then you may experience symptoms such as depression, insomnia, anxiety, restless leg syndrome, headaches and muscle spasms. Therefore, if you’re only treating the structural cause and missing the nutritional piece of the puzzle, the relief from your pain and symptoms may only be short term. For my clients I might suggest adding the nutrition through diet. Another option may be through supplement form.
Chemical stressors include environmental pollution, medications, alcohol, household cleaning products and personal care products. The aim is to reduce any toxic load to our body to give our body the best chance to heal.
Emotional stress is a huge factor. This may include day-to-day stressors such as work pressures, financial burdens or an argument with a loved one. When I ask my patients about stress, some of them respond with “No, I don’t feel stressed”. However, we have all experienced varying degrees of trauma in our life. People often experience symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) such as anxiety and fear from traumatic life events. When we don’t deal with these stressors (from the past or present) in an appropriate way, they get stored in the body and may manifest as all sorts of health issues.
The ONE Research Foundation has conducted a study on NET at The Marcus Institute of Integrative Health at Thomas Jefferson University, which found NET effectively and rapidly reduced symptoms of traumatic stress events in patients who had experienced life-threatening medical issues. More information on this study can be found on my blog post.
We all tend to experience different stressors week to week, and our health can suffer as a result. Keeping up with your regular chiropractic treatments can help your body cope better with the physical, nutritional, chemical and emotional stressors it may come across. When we’re feeling our best we can get the most out of our day, and enjoy the important things that life has to offer.
Dr Megan Azer is part of the Nourish Melbourne Community. You can find Dr Megan in both Camberwell and the CBD. Nourish Melbourne Members now save on all appointments with Dr Megan. Click here for details or if you're not a Nourish Melbourne Member, click here to find out how you can be saving on all things wellness.