Northwest Wellness's Blog

Useful information for a healthy lifestyle.

Looking for a specific blog topic?  Search here:


Understanding injury healing time

Understanding injury healing time

There are four general musculoskeletal tissue types we work with in Physical Therapy: Bone, ligament, muscle and tendon. They all have their own varying fabric, blood supply, action, strength and healing time. Injuries to these tissues look and behave differently. People’s biological healing process and timeline can also vary based on prior health, inflammatory response sufficiency, body mass, rest-time, etc. The list goes on. We want to provide you with a basic, barebones (pun intended) and text-book breakdown of generic terminology and expected healing times for these tissue types. Understand this is not black and white; there are so many integrated circumstances that make you and your healing process different from the next person.

Read More

Ice or Heat? Contrast therapy?

Ice or Heat? Contrast therapy?

We often discuss with our patients, the pain relief benefits of hot and/or cold therapy. It’s inexpensive, convenient and doesn’t require medication. An uncomplicated rule to use is, ice for acute, heat for chronic. But it’s not always that simple.

Read More

Can Chiropractic Help Leg Pain or Sciatica?

Can Chiropractic Help Leg Pain or Sciatica?

Sciatica is common condition that results in both back and leg pain.The sciatic nerve is the largest single nerve in the body and is composed of individual nerve roots that start by branching out from the spine in the lower back and combine to form the "sciatic nerve."

 

Read More

Natural Treatments For Chronic Pain

Natural Treatments For Chronic Pain

Chronic pain affects about 1 in 5 people in the U.S.  This type of pain interferes with the ability to work, enjoy family or any sort of social life.  Prescription medications are prescribed to these individuals in an attempt to manage their pain.   Sadly, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse National Overdose Deaths, there was a 2.8-fold increase in the total number of deaths from prescription drugs from 2001 to 2014.  Clearly prescription drugs are not the answer to the pain crisis facing America. If you are suffering from chronic pain here are the best natural and effective alternatives to dangerous medications:

Read More

Auto Accidents and Whiplash Injuries

Auto Accidents and Whiplash Injuries

The most common type of injury that occurs in an automobile accident is a strain/sprain to the neck and back.  This is also known as a “whiplash” injury and is the result of the head being thrown violently back and forth like a whip.  Most often, the injury occurs to the individual in the vehicle that is hit from behind and can cause damage to the muscles, ligaments and vertebra of the spine.  This results in neck pain, back pain, headaches and TMJ disorders.

Read More

Inflammation

Inflammation

Inflammation by definition is a response from the immune system to a local infection or injury that acts to separate and resolve the damage and to protect the body from invasion. Once inflammation occurs, depending on the severity of the damage and location, recovery may take some time. Inflammation is a protective tissue response, however, it is when the body is unable to progress past this stage that it interferes with healing. 

Read More

Ice Burn

Ice burn. It sounds like an oxymoron but it is a real injury. Though burns are normally associated with heat, the improper and prolonged application of ice or cold packs can cause thermal damage to the skin, leading ultimately to frostbite. By placing a layer between the skin and ice or ice pack, that helps prevent ice burn. The ice pack should be left on for no longer than 15-20 minutes at a time as well.

Treatment for an ice burn, first and foremost, is to remove the ice from the skin. Then, the process of warming the area needs to be gradual to avoid causing further damage. Notice, this is the opposite for heat burns which require cooling as quickly as possible. Using a towel soaked in warm water or soaking the ice burn in a warm bath can gradually increase the temperature without doing further damage. Do Not use hot water.

Blisters are also a possibility when the skin has been burned with ice. Treatment for blisters is the same for ice as heat. Do not pop the blisters. Applying an antibiotic ointment helps reduce the risk of infection.

Contact a medical professional if the skin remains cold, hard, or numb after the above mentioned treatments. This could be a sign of nerve damage and needs to be addressed by a professional. 

The importance of Maintenance Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic care consists of three distinct stages of treatment; Relief Care, Corrective Care, and Maintenance Care.

Relief Care provides initial, temporary alleviation of your symptoms or pain. This typically occurs when inflammation is decreased and joint function restored through a spinal adjustment.  Ice, heat or cold laser may also be incorporated during this phase of care.   Relief care can be temporary if the underlying cause is not addressed.  In many cases there is trauma to the soft tissue which requires healing and strengthening.  Faulty muscle patterns consisting of weak or overly tight muscles also need to be addressed for lasting results.  These conditions are often due to poor posture, repetitive use or micro-trauma.

Corrective Care takes longer because it addresses the trauma and faulty muscle patterns described above.  Some considerations in the length of this treatment are the condition and integrity of the spinal column, the age and physical condition of the patient, the severity of the injury and the duration of the problem.  Corrective care often includes rehabilitative exercises and soft tissue therapies in addition to spinal adjustments.   

Maintenance Care is the final stage that ensures that the integrity of the spine is being sustained and supported.  Because day to day activities put biomechanical strain on our bodies, we must continue to monitor the health and condition of your spine through periodic evaluations.  Regular chiropractic adjustments will help insure you are living at your optimum level of health and function.

The benefits of maintenance care are that minor misalignments can be detected before they become symptomatic or well-established.  Maintenance chiropractic care allows for improved posture, enhanced function, better athletic performance, reduced injuries and an overall enjoyable pain-free lifestyle.  This type of preventative or wellness care can also save time and money by keeping minor problems from becoming more serious.