2007-09-30 00:00:00

Growing up with Low Back Pain.

A recent study published in the medical journal Spine showed an alarming increase in adolescent low back pain in recent years.

In 1994 16% of children 12-15 experienced low back pain.? Just six years?later, in 2002,?that number jumped to 36%. ?The direct cause of this increase is unknown at this point but many lifestyle factors are thought to contribute to these numbers.

  • Backpacks - Children are carrying more and morein their backpacks.? As children develop, this increased force could play a part in childhood low back pain.? How much should a child’s backpack weigh?? The pack should be no more than 10% of the child’s weight.
  • Determine if your child’s backpack is too heavy - weigh them without the pack, then with the pack. Subtract the two numbers, then take that number and divide by the childs weght. For example a 50 lb child (w/o pack) weighs 60 lbs with pack. Subtract 60lbs - 50lbs = 10 lbs, now divide 10lbs/50lbs = 20%.
  • Inactivity - As children grow, they need to be active!? It should come as no suprise that low back pain increases as physical activity decreases.? Make sure that your children take periodic breaks from sitting and move around and stretch.? Also, limit time that is spent in front of the computer and t.v.

For more information regarding backpack safety and low back prevention, visit the American Chiropractic Association website at http://www.americhiro.org/press_css.cfm?CID=104
The course of low back pain from adolescence to adulthood. Spine 2006; 31 (4): 488-72

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2007-09-30 00:00:00

Fibromyalgia Pain Relieved by Acupuncture

Are you in the 4% of the population diagnosed with fibromyalgia?? Do you suffer from widespread unexplainable pain?? What about interrupted sleep, extreme fatigue?? Irritable Bowel Syndrome?? Anxiety?

There are a lot of signs and symptoms that have been grouped together and called Fibromyalgia - which has no known specific?cause.? Western medical treatments?include pain relievers, muscle relaxers, and anti-depressants - all?symptom relief.?

Oriental Medicine, including Acupuncture looks at the whole person, getting to the root cause, thereby going beyond just symptom relief!??Acupuncture uses specific points along meridians, or pathways to rebalance the energy in the body.? There are many types of acupuncture - yes - even types that do not use needles!? There are new studies showing the benefits of acupuncture for the treatment of Fibromyalgia - opening a new and natural door?for people with this common syndrome.

For the Full Article go to: Fibromyalgia Studies

Stephanie Petix, L.Ac.

503-227-8781

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2007-09-30 00:00:00

Acupuncture for the Treatment of Stress

I know, I know, you are wondering how putting needles in your body is going to cause your stress to go away!? Fair question.?

We have all heard of the negative affects of long-term stress on the body.?In Chinese Medicine, stress disrupts the energy pathways in the body causing a blockage.? Think of a bathroom drain, hair goes into it and gradually builds up.? Eventually you will have a clogged drain.? The same happens with energy in your body.? Long-term stress builds and builds in your body eventually causing “dis-harmonies” varying in degree.? Acupuncture is extremely beneficial in unblocking stuck energy and promoting the free flow of energy throughout the body.? It uses tiny hair like needles placed in specific points to relax and rebalance your system.? Most people even fall asleep during treatments!?

For further reading: Acupuncture for Stress

If you have any questions, please feel free to call,

Stephanie Petix, L.Ac.

503-227-8781

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2007-09-30 00:00:00

Foods that Trigger Migraines

If you suffer from migraine headaches or know someone who does, you are aware of how debilitating they can be.? The severity of these headaches varies immensely.? Some people experience minor symptoms that come and go with little effect on daily life, while others find themselves locked in a quiet, dark room for days.

Many theories have been proposed to explain migraine headache, but the actual cause is not completely understood.? It was once thought that changes in the circulatory system were to blame for headaches, but recent research points the finger at the central nervous system. Even though we don’t know the exact cause of migraines, we do know that migraines can be trigger by environmental agents such as stress and food.

For many people it is a difficult task to narrow down the food that is responsible triggering their migraine. Luckily,?researchers have been able to compile a list of foods that have a higher likelihood of triggering a migraine.

The following is a list of foods that trigger migraines:

  • Cheese
  • Chocolate
  • Citrus fruits
  • Hot dogs
  • Monosodium glutamate (MSG)
  • Aspartame
  • Fatty foods
  • Ice cream
  • Caffeine withdrawal
  • Alcoholic drinks, especially red wine and beer

From the previous list, it seems like one would?have little trouble avoiding the most common triggers, there is one?trigger that is not as hard to avoid.

Monosodium glutamate or MSG is known as a common ingredient in Chinese, but it is also found in other common foods such at commercial soups, soy sauce, salad dressing, frozen dinners, soup mix, croutons, stuffing andsome chips.? It can be disguised on food labels as sodium caseinate, hydrolyzed protein, or autolyzed yeast.

The best way to determine what triggers might be affecting you is to do an elimination diet.? An elimination diet involves removing the majority of foods from your diet except for a few foods that are thought to be non-allergenic.? While on the diet, foods are added periodically and the effect is measured.

Unfortunately migraines are typically multi-factorial and involve many different variables.? A food might be the trigger that is the straw that breaks the camels back, but stress might be the true underlying cause.

It is important to address the foods that trigger migraines, but don’t lose sight of the other environment triggers such as stress and physical pain.

Migraines can also be caused by life threatening conditions such as cancer or stroke, so it is important to speak with a healthcare practitioner to determine the severity of your migraines.

For more information about migraines, you can visit the National Migraine Association.

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2007-09-30 00:00:00

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