Tuesday, July 27, 2010

It's not a tumor!

Whenever I have a new patient come to my office with any complaint from neck pain, shoulder pain, low back pain, digestive problems, stress, all of the above, etc., I always go over a full medical history. We cover everything from past accidents to medications/supplements to diet (usually consisting of a pot of coffee and fast food). No matter what the main complaint is, I always ask if he/she gets headaches. 90% of the time I get a "duh" look followed by "well, yeah, but that is normal. I get 2-3 per month/week/day, but I have always had them. I just take an aspirin and it goes away." It really makes me laugh everytime.

HEADACHES ARE NOT NORMAL! And taking an aspirin to help your headache is not fixing anything. I like to use this analogy. Let's say you get a pebble in the bottom of your shoe and it is digging into the bottom of your foot. Probably doesn't feel good, right? Do you grab an aspirin to help with the pain? No, you reach down, take off your shoe and empty the pebble out of your shoe. It was the pebble that was causing the pain, not a lack of aspirin. Well, a lack of aspirin is not causing your headaches.
Although there are many different types of headaches (tension, cluster, migraine, etc.) and many, many more types of medications and treatments for those headaches, the posture of your neck can play a huge role with headaches. I especially like to see patients whose headaches have not responded to any of those medications/treatments. There are 7 vertebrae in your neck and the top three vertebrae have nerves that supply your head, face, sinuses. Many times I will find a subluxation (rotation of a vertebrae) in the neck which can cause a pinched nerve leading to headaches. By correcting the subluxation with a gentle manipulation, pressure is taken off of the nerves and usually the headache improves.
If you get headaches on a regular basis, don't suffer through them. You could be a chiropractic visit away from being headache and aspirin free.
Live Well.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Ear pain/infection

With ear infections in children being one of the most common reasons for a doctor's visit, I thought I would pass along a great article about ear pain/infections...


If your child suffers from repetitive ear infections or is bothered by ear pain, you can call our office at 847.888.3131 to schedule an appointment.

Live Well

Sunday, March 14, 2010

What a mess!

With our son, Zack, just getting over a bout of a stomach virus, what better time to talk about diarrhea and vomiting. Unfortunately, he did plenty of both over the last 4 days. Poor guy. Anytime your child is not feeling well, the number one thing to do is to keep him/her as comfortable as possible. Lots of rest and lots of love! All he wanted to do was cuddle and sleep. So that's what he did and we just made sure he got fluids throughout the day.

Diarrhea and vomiting can be treated in similar ways. There are many causes, but the most common cause is due to a stomach virus (viral gastroenteritis) which many people call the stomach flu. With a stomach virus, vomiting usually occurs first with or without a fever followed by diarrhea. This was the case for Zack. Because of the loss of fluids, you really want to keep your child hydrated. Also, because it is due to a virus, medicine does not help, so here are some helpful hints to help with the diarrhea and vomiting:

1) Stop foods especially solid (they'll just come back up or out)
2) Avoid dairy as it is irritating on the gut
3) Give frequent sips of fluids (water, breast milk, broths, soups, teas), but don't force it
4) Probiotics (I have a great infant powdered probiotic at my office)
5) Lots of rest

You should always monitor your child for severe dehydration (no tears when crying, altered or depressed mental status, dry diaper for more than 5 hours, skin that doesn't return to its position after being pinched) and you should seek medical care if you notice any of these signs.

Live Well.

Monday, February 8, 2010

I've Got a Fever

When I think of a fever, a picture of Ferris Bueller holding his thermometer next to his bedside light comes into my head. How many of you did that as a kid knowing that a fever meant a day of no school?! Most of us are taught at an early age that a fever is a bad thing. We need to "break" the fever with Tylenol or Ibuprofen. We have become fever phobic as a society. What if I told you that a fever is a good thing. Gasp! Yep, you read that right.

A fever is part of your body's natural defense system. It shows that your immune system is working properly and especially in children it helps to strengthen the immune system. A fever helps to fight off and kill bacteria and viruses. When you suppress the fever, you are suppressing your body's defense and leaving it more susceptible to the intruders.

Instead of trying to "break" the fever, help to make your child as comfortable as possible while allowing the fever to do it's job. Here are some helpful suggestions:
- Stay with your child for support
- Lots of rest and clear fluids
- Less eating and activities
- A warm bath
- Chamomile in the bath or as a tea is very soothing

However, there are some times when you should seek medical care:
- Any fever in an infant under 3 months of age
- A fever over 106 degrees
- A fever that remains elevated for more than 48 hours
- If your child seems lethargic or has a change in mental state during the fever
- Any signs of difficulty breathing and/or swallowing, stiff neck, dehydration

So next time your child has a warm forehead, no need to run out to your local drugstore. Remember that a fever is the body's friend. Be thankful that the immune system is fighting off the enemy.

Live Well

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Conventional and Holistic Pediatric Medicine

Happy New Year! I hope 2010 brings you all great health and happiness!

I went to a great seminar this past weekend about conventional and holistic pediatric treatment approaches and options. It was taught by a renowned pediatrician, Dr. Lawrence Palevsky, MD, who focuses on the holistic approach to children's wellness. Instead of treating the symptoms with antibiotics and other medications, he treats the cause of the symptoms with diet and lifestyle changes, Chinese medicine, chiropractic referrals, essential oils, and many other holistic approaches. You can learn more about him at www.drpalevsky.com.

The thing that he stressed most the entire weekend was the importance of diet in our health. Where have you heard that before? ;) Whether it is asthma, allergies, bed wetting, ADD/ADHD, eczema, ear infections, etc., many can be prevented and even treated without the use of antibiotics and other medications. In fact, he hasn't prescribed an antibiotic in over a decade. How many of you have had a child that has had an ear infection that was treated by an antibiotic only to return after the antibiotic is finished? Could it be that something else is playing a role in the inflammation in the ear? Well, over my next few posts, I will be going over various childhood illnesses and giving you some helpful preventative tips to use at home!

Live Well.