Is it a Good Idea to Watch and Wait?

Even in a pandemic, the ‘watch and wait’ approach to scoliosis is not advised

In these challenging times, it can be easy to forget to keep a complete check on our health. Sure, we are all trying to get enough exercise, keep check on our hearts and blood pressure, and look after our mental health… but what about your spinal health?

While not top of mind for many people, staying vigilant about any changes in our spines, including pain and any postural changes, is especially important.  Regular at-home checks of all family members can help with early detection of any spinal issues, which include scoliosis.

 

Especially for children who are at home from school, a change that might have been picked up by a teacher or sports coach might be overlooked by busy parents.

 

Have you noticed a change?

 

A change in your, or a loved one’s spine, may indicate the signs of a developing scoliosis. Visual changes like a visible curve, uneven shoulders or hips, or a prominent shoulder blade, particularly in growing children and adolescents, can all be warning signs.

 

It can be easy to downplay these changes. As we are urged to stay at home, we might prefer to think that they will resolve on their own, or be complacent with a promise to ‘get that checked when this is all over’.

 

Don’t watch and wait.

 

It’s been shown that ‘watch and wait’ is not a viable option in treating scoliosis. Ignoring a change in spine needs to be investigated and importantly, any delay seeking advice may mean symptoms develop further.

 

Particularly for growing children and adolescents, without assessment and management, the scoliosis is likely to progress over time and small curves have the potential to rapidly progress into larger curves. For older adults, seeking advice early about any postural changes or pain, can help to greatly enhance the quality of life and prevent pain and progression.

 

It’s also been shown that early detection and then early intervention leads to better patient outcomes including wider opportunities for treatment and access to a range of non-surgical scoliosis treatment options including modern 3D bracing and scoliosis specific exercise programs.

 

Luckily, even in these uncertain times, scoliosis care is essential and accessible. 

 

You may not have a scoliosis clinic near you physically open, or you might not be able to attend a clinic in person, however, TeleHealth consultations mean you can be in touch with a professional for assessment, advice, and support.

 

For now, and going forward, here are some practical tips to keep in mind:

  • Keep a check on your, and your family’s, spinal health
  • Check regularly for any signs of scoliosis, especially in children
  • If you notice a change, don’t watch and wait
  • Be proactive in seeking professional advice for assessment, treatment, and support

We are here to help, please don’t hesitate to contact us at http://www.avantchiro.com.

– Dr. Payne

 

Wherever you go, there you are.

It’s a little unusual for me to tell stories, but this thought came up and I wanted to share it. Hear me out on this, I promise there’s a good ending.

A Canadian couple goes on vacation to a beautiful island; it’s like paradise for them. They have done well in life, and are considering a change. The thought of moving to this island would be amazing.

One morning while they were walking along the beach they ran into a local, older gentleman. They asked him, “We are thinking of moving to this island from Canada because it’s so beautiful. Have you loved living here?”

The older gentleman replied back with a question, “Tell me what your community is like where you’re from in Canada?”

The couple answered, “OH, we have wonderful neighbours. The community is kind, and we really enjoyed raising our kids there!”

The older gentleman remarked, “Well, I am sure you will find the same thing here then.” And smiled.

The couple, elated with the response from the gentleman, skipped away contemplating the potential move – full of joy.

A few days later the older gentleman was faced by the same question from another couple. The older man responded the same way, “What is the community like where you are from?”

The second couple frowned, “Well honestly – we can’t wait to move. People are edgy, almost unkind. Neighbours yell at each other, it is at the point we don’t want to walk in the neighbourhood anymore.”

The older gentleman paused, “Hmmm, I am sorry to say that you will likely find the same thing here.”

The couple looked downcast, and walked away disappointed. 

Why did the older gentleman give two different answers to the same question? What did he know?

Wherever you go,  there you are. What you bring to your surroundings will make (or break) any experience.

I have reflected on this story in my own life, mostly pertaining to where I want to live. I enjoy cycling, back country skiing, and being outdoors in general. My family loves our home, but I had a feeling of dissatisfaction because I perceived the inability to engage in activities that give me joy. I thought, maybe we should move to BC, another part of town, or some kind of change in general.

On one of my dog walks with my wife, Heike, I was trying to explain these feelings. Heike was more silent, just listening to what I had to say. Then I had a moment of grace, a revelation really.

I said to her, “Actually, you have never stopped me from doing anything I had wanted to do; whether it be to ski, bike, compete in Ironman races, any of it.”

She said, “Nope.”

It was all my perception and conceived notions that were creating most of my internal conflict. Change is hard and unsettling. It is very worthwhile if it’s FOR something, and not just change for change sake.

The moral of the story is that wherever you go, you’re always bringing yourself! Until you work on the inside, the outside will never change. 

Dr. Payne

14 Hydration Benefits

Drinking water has its perks! Here are 14 reasons why you should keep hydrated during any season:

  1. Forms saliva (digestion)
  2. Keeps mucosal membranes moist
  3. Allows body’s cell to grow, reproduce and survive
  4. Flushes body waste, mainly in urine
  5. Lubricates joints
  6. Major component of most body parts
  7. Needed by the brain to manufacture hormones and neurotransmitters
  8. Regulates body temperature (sweating and respiration)
  9. Acts as a shock absorber for the brain and spinal cord
  10. Helps deliver oxygen all over the body
  11. Up to 60% of the human adult body is water
  12. The heart and brain are composed of 73% water, the skin 64%, muscles and kidneys
  13. 79% and the bones 31%
  14. Generally an adult male needs 3 litres per day, and an adult female 2.2 litres
  15. Babies and kids have more water as a percentage than adults (78%)

– AVANT Chiropractic

Security with Supplements

The colder weather is coming. I won’t say the “S” word just yet though. Maybe if we spell it backwards, it’ll hold off? WONS.

This time of year people have an introduction into the fall/winter season by presenting with a cold or flu. Research has shown that proper supplements this time of year can be as effective, and potentially less dangerous, than other more mainstream intervention methods. Supplements in conjunction with your chiropractic adjustment are very effective in not only strengthening, but counter-balancing stressors that suppress your immune system function.  When you do not receive proper nutrients, this makes you more susceptible to the cold and flu viruses being transmitted this time of year.

Multi: Supplies the nutrients you’re not getting in food
Omega 3’s: Reduces Inflammation
D3: 5000 IU Immune system, healthy bones, brain physiology
Magnesium: Protects nerves, heart, blood vessels, and brain
K: Proper blood clotting, strong bones/teeth

The list above is a group of essential vitamins we should be taking everyday. They work in conjunction with each other to provide optimal benefit to you, the host. There is variability in the amounts you should take if you are sick or you are preventing illness.

I will be covering each one of these supplements in the following days right here on this blog. Don’t worry, I’ll provide you with references to support the reasoning behind my recommendations.

Thanks for reading,
Dr. Greg Payne, D.C.