Chiropractic care helps the nervous system function better by removing interferences in the spine. This can help prevent headaches and other pain and inflammation throughout the body. It allows the body to perform better including the eustachian tube function which prevents ear infections from developing.
What is the general premise of chiropractic care and how it helps the body function?
Dr. Gary Weinstein: Chiropractic was originally founded on allowing the body to function to its optimal potential, and it deals with health. We have been pigeonholed into aches and pains, which were tremendously good at, but the basic premise of chiropractic is the restoration and the continuation of optimal health for our patients. How does it help the body? The nervous system is the master system of the body; it controls everything. Our nervous impulses travel from the brain, and either directly through the spinal cord or indirectly to all portions of our body, down to each and every cell, either directly or indirectly; there’s chemical synapses that occur, so it’s not just a hard-wired system.
The spinal column is made up of 24 movable segments called vertebrae. These vertebrae being movable allow us to bend, move, and have the motion that we get and have, but it also creates an inherent weakness in that these vertebrae can become misaligned or, what in chiropractic terms are subluxated. That is the misalignment of the vertebrae causing an interference to that nervous system. Once that nervous system is being interfered with via a subluxation, whatever is at the end of that nerve or nerve chain, it is impossible to function properly. If you cut the nerves going to your heart, it won’t work. If you interfere with the nerves going to your heart, it won’t work properly. Chiropractors are the only professional trained to detect and correct the spinal subluxation.
If someone is suffering from headaches or ear infections, what type of examination would a chiropractor do to help find the cause?
Dr. Gary Weinstein: Well, we examine the spine and we examine not based typically on symptoms, but on trying to find the root of the problems. We examine the patient as a whole person, not just a typically symptom, “Oh, you have a headache so we are going to just look here.” We do a complete orthopedic neurological chiropractic exam. We also do a set of spinal x-rays so that we can see in the majority of our patients. There are exceptions that we don’t, but that is few and far between. We do an EMG scan, which shows us normal and abnormal nerve functions, measuring the electrical activity paraspinally in the musculature, and we do a thermal scan, which measures temperature difference one inch on each side is fine. These are all tools that allow us to determine how the body is functioning, or more so, how the body is not functioning properly.
The headaches, there is a reason they are occurring. They are not occurring from a lack of aspirin. There’s a reason that the body is giving the patient these headaches; our job is to find that reason. Same thing with ear infections. It is not normal for a child to have ear infections. There is the medial part of the ear, the middle ear is always bathed in fluid, so what happens is the lymphatic system does not drain that fluid properly. This can be caused by this spinal subluxation, so the ear fills up with fluid. As every parent knows, we’ll look in the ear, “Oh, there’s no infection, but there is fluid behind the ear.” Give it two days, it will be infected, because through the eustachian tube there is a connection there to the outside world. It is not that the ear infection is not caused by the bacteria. The ear infection is caused by the body providing a fertile ground for that bacteria to then take over.
What are some different chiropractic treatments used to help with headaches?
Dr. Gary Weinstein: Well, basic chiropractic treatments that help with headaches is the adjustment. The adjustment is where we adjust the cervical spine. We may adjust the occiput, which is the base of the skull as well. There are many, many different techniques. The beauty of it is, they all work. Now, some will work differently with some people and some will work better with other people. That’s why, as a doctor, we are trained. After 34 years, I’ve got, let’s put it this way, a whole bag of tricks. If something is not working for the patient, we are not going to do the same thing over and over again expecting different results. We are going to change, find what works best for that patient to get their problem not only relieved, but corrected so that they don’t have to deal with this for the rest of their life.
Are there any special treatments used specifically for ear infections?
Dr. Gary Weinstein: Typically, it’s the upper cervical adjustment, adjustment of the occiput, C1 and C2, which are the top two vertebrae. That is the area that we usually focus on when we are dealing with children with ear infections. See, it is not normal for a child to have an ear infection. It is not normal for a child to be colicky. It is not normal for a child to have reflux problems. These are all things that respond extremely well to the chiropractic care and the chiropractic adjustment. An ear infection is not caused by a lack of antibiotics.
Will ongoing chiropractic care help keep headaches and ear infections away?
Dr. Gary Weinstein: Absolutely. Now, we are all going to get sick at some point in time, and we may have a headache if we are smelling paint fumes, then you develop a headache from that. Well, that is your body’s warning system telling you there’s something wrong, and it doesn’t matter how many times you get adjusted, if you’re still sitting next to those paint fumes; so the paint fumes in that case are the cause, so we want to get rid of the paint fumes.
In order to stay healthy, we have to have a properly functioning spine and nervous system. Ongoing chiropractic care, chiropractic is a lifestyle. It is staying healthy, being healthy, keeping the patients healthy. Yes, just like going to the gym, you can’t train for a marathon and then never work out again and expect to be able to be as fit and run the marathon. You have to maintain things. Now, maintenance is much easier than correction, and correction is much easier when we are younger and gets more difficult as there is more damage done to the spine as we get older.
If you are interested in speaking with Dr. Gary Weinstein visit www.weinsteinchiro.com or call 412-269-0444 to schedule an appointment.