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Chiropractor Leland NC: Allergy Relief

When most people sneeze a few times or start feeling a little congested, the first thing that goes through their minds is usually “Oh great! A cold…” Depending on the time of year, though, other people have a very different thought-“Oh great! It’s allergy season again…” If you’re one of these “other” people, your second thought might be to reach into the medicine cabinet for an antihistamine pill. But did you know that a chiropractor could help you overcome your allergy problems without resorting to medications that can make you drowsy or cause other side-effects? Our chiropractor Leland NC explains more

Most people associate chiropractic physicians with back and neck issues, and it is certainly true that chiropractors can help with these types of musculoskeletal problems. However, they can also help the body achieve optimum health by ensuring the spine is correctly aligned.

Chiropractor Leland NC

A study from the University of California found that signals from the nervous system may influence the function of the immune system. While our immune system is there to fight against disease, and helps to keep the body performing at its peak, it also works to dispel foreign contaminants that enter the body. When we sneeze because of an allergy, it’s because our body detects the presence of a foreign object in the system, such as dust, mites, pollen, etc. and it produces chemicals to neutralize and expel the allergens. These chemicals are known as histamines. In the case of allergies, the immune system overreacts to the presence of the allergens in the body. A chiropractor may help by removing the nerve interference from compressions in the spine. As a result, the immune system is able to function optimally once more.

Most traditional treatments for allergies, such as antihistamines, only suppress or manage the symptoms and don’t address the underlying cause. In addition, the safety of anti-allergy medication is also under debate-particularly when used over long periods of time or combined with other drugs. One study conducted in lab rats with brand name anti-allergy medication found that cancerous tumors in the rats grew much father with the intake of antihistamines.
In contrast, a chiropractor treats patients by using spinal manipulation to release the stresses on the nervous system, which allows the immune system to work more effectively and-as a consequence-reduces allergies. This is yet another way that chiropractic care can promote optimal health and help improve your quality of life.

Remember-we are here to help! If you suffer from allergies or have concerns about your health more generally, we encourage you to call or visit our office today! Our chiropractor Leland NC can help you!

 

 

 

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Chiropractor Wilmington NC: Spinal Manipulation

Spinal manipulation-sometimes referred to as “adjustment”-is a special type of manual therapy that forms the foundation of chiropractic care. Chiropractors use adjustments to correct dislocations and misalignments of the bones of the spine (vertebrae) called “subluxations”. The word “subluxation” has its origins in the Latin words “luxare” (to dislocate) and “sub” (mild). Depending on their location and severity, subluxations may put pressure on or irritate nerves and blood vessels in the spine, causing musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction. Our chiropractor Wilmington NC explains more.

Spinal manipulation involves the use of a certain amount of controlled force that is applied in a specific direction to a joint that is not moving properly. Adjustments are usually done manually by the doctor but may also be accomplished using a variety of specialized instruments designed for this purpose. Chiropractic adjustments help return your vertebrae to their natural position. The goal is to relieve pain, restore normal function and encourage the healing of injured tissues.

Chiropractor Wilmington NC

Before carrying out an adjustment, your chiropractor will thoroughly evaluate your condition by discussing your personal health history with you, performing a physical examination and-if necessary-using a variety of diagnostic tools (such as imaging or laboratory tests). During the adjustment procedure itself, you may be lying down on a specially designed chiropractic table, sitting or standing-whichever is most appropriate for your situation.

There are over 96 individual chiropractic maneuvers your doctor may choose from for your adjustment. He or she will decide which ones to use based on a variety of factors, including the area of the spine being adjusted and the amount of force that will be required. For this reason, the position of both the patient and the chiropractor are taken into account when selecting the most appropriate combination of spinal manipulation techniques for your condition.

Adjustments may be used to treat back pain, neck pain, or pain in other areas of the body such as hips, shoulders, arms and legs. The procedure rarely causes pain. However, there may occasionally be some discomfort for patients who are new to chiropractic care or who have suffered a recent trauma in the area being adjusted. The sound may also surprises some new patients. The popping and cracking noises (called “cavitation”) that occur during adjustments are the result of gas bubbles being released from within the joints. The phenomenon is similar to the one that occurs when people crack their knuckles and is quite normal.
In many cases, spinal manipulation is all that is needed to treat certain types of musculoskeletal disorders (lower back pain, for example). However, chiropractic physicians often combine adjustments with other types of treatment, such as massage and cold laser therapy, to help their patients recover as quickly and completely as possible.

If you or someone you care about is wondering whether a chiropractor Wilmington NC might be the right choice, please call or visit our office today. We’ll be happy to explain our approach and answer any questions. Remember-we’re here to help!

 

 

 

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Chiropractor Leland NC: Stretching

Short on Time During Your Workout? Don’t Skip the Stretching!

Why is stretching the part of our workout regimen that so many of us tend to skip? We might tell ourselves it’s because we’re sort on time, that we’re impatient or that (deep down) we believe stretching is really pointless. But however we rationalize it, skipping the stretching is a BAD idea! Our chiropractor Leland NC explains more.

It’s probably obvious that our joints were designed to be able to move in various directions with a certain degree of freedom. But as our bodies age, we become stiffer and lose the flexibility we had when we were young. In fact, chances are (unless you happen to be a dancer or gymnast), that process will start even before you reach your 20th birthday. However, it’s never too late to regain some of that youthful flexibility by becoming more serious about stretching. Combined with strength training, proper stretching can help prolong our mobility and independence-allowing us to perform basic day-to-day tasks well into our senior years. Reaching that high shelf, bending to pick up a dropped object, and accessing that hidden switch behind an awkward kitchen cabinet are all great examples.
One reason it’s really important to stretch before working out is that we are likely to use muscles and connective tissues that are normally inactive. Without flexibility, the risk of getting hurt goes up. However, stretching can help prevent (or even treat) some common types of musculoskeletal injuries if it’s done correctly. Plus, it can feel good! Stretching can be a great way to start the day or to wind down after work.

Preparing the body for exercise by warming up the muscles (increasing blood flow) and stretching is easy and need not take up much of your time. Simply begin moving the various muscle groups in a deliberate way, with slow stretches of the joints towards the end of their range of motion. As you do this, you should notice a gentle “pulling” sensation and hold the position for up to half a minute. Then stretch the alternate side or move on to other muscle groups. Not only does stretching prevent injury, but it also improves the mechanical efficiency of your body. Stretching prior to exercise means muscles and joints are able to move through their full range of motion with less effort when exercising , improving performance.

Other benefits of stretching include improved circulation, less pain and faster recoveries following workouts, and better posture. If you find yourself arriving home stiff and achy from sitting at a desk all day and then commuting-try stretching. You might find that you’ll feel better almost instantly!
Remember-good health is the result of lots of little day-to-day things, including your nutrition, exercise and sleep habits, as well as your healthcare choices. As chiropractic physicians, we’re experts in diagnosing and treating disorders of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. We’re also experts in prevention and performance. If you’re interested in any of these things, we encourage you to call or visit our office today and schedule an appointment with our chiropractor Leland NC!

 

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Back Pain Wilmington NC: History of Back Walking

A new and increasingly popular form of massage therapy called “Ashiatsu” is actually anything but new. This type of massage—in which the therapist manipulates the patient’s back by walking on it—has its roots in the East. Although stories of exactly where and when this form of “back walking” massage began vary, its origins can safely be traced back to ancient India, China, Japan, and other Asian countries. our back pain specialist in Wilmington NC explains more about ashiatsu.

One of the first historical citations of this practice comes from the Kerala region of India, where a practice known as Chavutti Thirumal was developed among practitioners of martial arts and classical dance. In the local language, the word “Chavutti” means foot or leg, and the word “Thirumal” means massage. Students of these martial arts and dance methods used foot massage techniques to help their bodies heal from injury and remain supple and flexible.

The practice soon spread to other areas of Asia. In Japan it became combined with the study of pressure points and meridians. Just as the word “Shiatsu” means “finger pressure” (“shi” translates to “finger” and “atsu” translates to pressure), “Ashiatsu” means “foot pressure” (“ashi” translates to “foot”). At around the same time in Thailand, other forms of barefoot Thai massage were being developed based on the principles of Chavutti Thirumal.

How has Ashiatsu evolved over time?

In the late 1990s, a form of Ashiatsu was developed by Ruthie Piper and trademarked as Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy™, or AOBT. Although she was not the first practitioner of barefoot massage in the United States, Piper’s work training and certifying practitioners of the technique helped to make it more popular in this country.

The “Bar Therapy” aspect of AOBT and newer forms of Ashiatsu massage refers to the fact that the patient is positioned on a modern massage table rather than on a mat on the floor, and the Ashiatsu practitioner supports himself or herself above the patient using a set of bars installed on the ceiling. This enables practitioners not only to more easily maintain their balance, but to use the bars to control the amount of pressure being applied to patients’ back muscles.

Ashiatsu massage is considered to be less stressful for the patient’s body than many other massage techniques because pressure from the feet is spread out over a wider area than it would be if applied by the fingers, heel of the hand, or elbow. It is thus ideal for massaging large muscles such as the thigh or trapezius muscles of the back. Ashiatsu massage is certainly less stressful for the bodies of practitioners since they can use gravity to assist them in their work, rather than having to rely entirely on their own muscle power to apply directed pressure.

If you are interested in Ashiatsu massage, speak to our back pain specialist in Wilmington NC chiropractor or massage therapist. He or she will be able to answer your questions and to refer you to trained practitioners of the technique. Remember– improper use of the technique can cause injury, and it is not advisable to allow someone without the correct training to perform back walking massage.

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Chiropractor Wilmington NC: Atlas Orthogonal Technique

The Atlas Orthogonal Technique is a highly-specialized form of chiropractic treatment focused on restoring body balance through upper cervical spinal corrections. In particular, the manipulations concentrate on the first bone in the neck, which is also known as the atlas vertebra. Misalignment of this vertebra can lead to both physical and mental stress throughout the body. Our chiropractor Wilmington NC explains more about this technique.

What is the objective of the Atlas Orthogonal Technique?

In the simplest terms, the goal of the procedure is to gently move the atlas vertebra into a better position relative to the spine below and skull above. The Atlas Orthogonal adjustment is designed to restore balance and proper communication between your brain and your body. When nerve impulses between the two are restricted, pain, tension and a variety of other health conditions—sometimes chronic—can result. By re-aligning this critical bone, the Atlas Orthogonist can relieve nerve compression and promote healing.

Chiropractor Wilmington NC: What makes this technique different from other chiropractic adjustments?

One of the main differences is that patients experience very little sensation during an Atlas Orthogonal adjustment. The chiropractor uses a special x-ray device to pinpoint the exact location of the atlas vertebra and to determine how far it has shifted from its normal position. Then, the device applies a brief sound vibration directly to the neck that gently moves the atlas vertebra into a better position relative to the skull and spine. Unlike other types of chiropractic manipulation that involve larger amounts of directed force and sometimes produce a popping sound (referred to as “cavitation”), this technique requires only minute adjustments of the atlas bone in order to initiate healing and pain relief.

What can I expect from my first atlas correction?

Your chiropractor will determine the treatment you need after a comprehensive evaluation of your symptoms, prior medical history, and x-rays. The degree of misalignment, along with the nature and severity of your symptoms, will determine how quickly you experience relief. You may also notice some tiredness or muscle stiffness, and in some cases pain symptoms may migrate to another area of the body. For most people, one or two Atlas Orthogonal adjustments are all they need to start noticing improvements.

Can all chiropractors provide Atlas Orthogonal adjustments?

No. An Atlas Orthogonist is a doctor of chiropractic who has completed additional specialized training focused on spinal manipulations of the upper spine and neck, using the Atlas Orthogonal percussion instrument. The Atlas Orthoganist is an expert in light touches rather than forceful manipulation, although he or she may offer several types of adjustments to their patients. Your Atlas Orthoganist will also have extensive training in the proper use of advanced imaging techniques. X-rays play a particularly important role in atlas correction, since precise measurements are required for diagnostic purposes and to deliver the treatment as well as to evaluate its progress in restoring proper alignment.

If you’re interested in learning more about how Atlas Orthogonal adjusting works, please call or visit our office today.

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Chiropractor Shallotte NC: Whole Body Vibration

Chronic pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Not only does this pain create untold suffering for millions of people, but its treatment also costs individuals and employers billions of dollars every year. Given these stakes, it’s not surprising that teams at the world’s leading medical institutions are trying to understand the reasons for chronic pain and what can be done to address them. Our chiropractor Shallotte NC explains more.

Recent research indicates that one of the primary work-related causes of chronic pain is long-term exposure to vibration.  This research focuses on two primary forms of vibration and their possible negative effects:

  • Hand-arm vibration, or HAV, is often experienced by workers who use vibrating hand tools all day on the job. HAV can give rise to permanent injuries such as vibration white finger, carpal tunnel syndrome, and ulnar tunnel syndrome.
  • Whole body vibration, or WBV, occurs when the vibration of a larger machine is transmitted to the body of the person operating it, usually through a seat or flooring. WBV is potentially much more debilitating than HAV.

What are the risks from whole body vibration?

According to studies published by governmental occupational health agencies, people who work in vibrating vehicles—train engineers, truck drivers, operators of construction machinery, pilots and so on—are at significantly higher risk of developing chronic lower back and neck pain than other workers who are not exposed to this vibration. In one such study, locomotive engineers exposed to WBV were found to be twice as likely to experience frequent low back and neck pain as other workers.

Similar results have also been found is studies of military helicopter pilots, who are required to maintain detailed logs of their flight time (and therefore their cumulative exposure to WBV). Pilots who have flown more than 2,000 hours have far more instances of transient and chronic back pain than non-flying officers or those assigned to aircraft that produced fewer vibrations.

Who should be concerned?

Naturally, these studies should at least raise questions for people whose jobs require them to sit in vibrating vehicles or stand on vibrating machinery all day. This includes drivers of tractors, fork lift trucks or earth-moving machinery, but may also extend to landscapers using riding mowers or construction workers using any type of machinery that exposes operators to whole body vibration. As the links between hours of WBV exposure and disability have been studied and documented, regulators and unions have worked with employers to improve working conditions and set limits for WBV exposure to protect workers. These exposure limits are usually expressed in terms of the number of permissible hours of exposure per week, but WBV can still produce negative effects in people who are exposed to it only occasionally, so diligence is required on the part of the worker as well as the employer.

If your job regularly exposes you to significant levels of whole body vibration and you’ve experienced chronic or occasional attacks of back or neck pain, there is very possibly a connection. In addition to speaking with your manager, you should also consider visiting a chiropractor. Chiropractic physicians are experts at diagnosing and treating musculoskeletal problems, particularly those related to the back and neck. Depending on your situation, he or she may be able to help you recover from your injury and recommend ways to lower your health risk from on-the-job vibration.

Looking for a chiropractor Shallotte NC? Contact us today!

Chiropractor in Wilmington NC: Kids and Weight Lifting

Kids can increase their strength, stamina, coordination and overall health through supervised strength training. By “strength training”, we mean exercises that use controlled movements with proper technique and light resistance to build strength. This should not be confused with powerlifting or bodybuilding, which focus on lifting progressively heavier weights or using weights to “sculp” musculature. When kids lift heavy weights, it places too much strain on their still-developing muscles and joints, and puts them at high risk of injury. Children should stay away from heavy free weights until they hit puberty. Instead, they should focus on strength training with body weight exercises and resistance tubing. Our chiropractor in Wilmington NC explains more.

How Young is Too Young for Weight Training?

There is no magical age at which a child is ready for weight training. Instead, it depends on each child’s ability to follow directions and practice enough to achieve proper form. This can happen as early as seven or eight in some kids, but not in all. If your child seems content just running and playing, games like tag and tug of war can be a fun way to build strength and endurance. However, if your child shows an interest in using strength training to grow stronger, and you believe they are mature enough to practice good technique, it can be safe and even beneficial to start an age-appropriate weight training program.
Safe Weight Training for Kids

If your child has a history of medical problems, it is wise to check in with their doctor before starting a program. When you get the okay, take some time to talk with a coach or personal trainer who has some experience in strength training for children to learn which techniques to use and which to avoid. When you and your child are ready to start training, start with body weight exercises and resistance bands. Focus on the importance of proper form rather than working with heavier weights. Be prepared to stick with your child throughout his or her training: supervision helps prevent injuries.

Strength training can help children become better at sports, maintain a healthy weight, and feel good about themselves. When done in the proper manner, it can be a safe and fun activity. If you and your child are interested in starting a weight training program, consider talking with a chiropractor beforehand. Your chiropractor can help you better understand how this sort of training will impact your child’s musculoskeletal growth and development, as well as advise you on the best ways to keep your child safe and injury-free while training. With the right perspective and support, weight training can be a beneficial and fun activity for just about any child!

Looking for a chiropractor in Wilmington NC? Contact us today!

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Chiropractor Shallotte NC: A Brief Patient’s Guide to Atlas Orthogonal Technique

The Atlas Orthogonal Technique is a highly-specialized form of chiropractic treatment focused on restoring body balance through upper cervical spinal corrections. In particular, the manipulations concentrate on the first bone in the neck, which is also known as the atlas vertebra. Misalignment of this vertebra can lead to both physical and mental stress throughout the body.
What is the objective of the Atlas Orthogonal Technique? Our chiropractor Shallotte NC explains more.

In the simplest terms, the goal of the procedure is to gently move the atlas vertebra into a better position relative to the spine below and skull above. The Atlas Orthogonal adjustment is designed to restore balance and proper communication between your brain and your body. When nerve impulses between the two are restricted, pain, tension and a variety of other health conditions—sometimes chronic—can result. By re-aligning this critical bone, the Atlas Orthogonist can relieve nerve compression and promote healing.

What makes this technique different from other chiropractic adjustments?

One of the main differences is that patients experience very little sensation during an Atlas Orthogonal adjustment. The chiropractor uses a special x-ray device to pinpoint the exact location of the atlas vertebra and to determine how far it has shifted from its normal position. Then, the device applies a brief sound vibration directly to the neck that gently moves the atlas vertebra into a better position relative to the skull and spine. Unlike other types of chiropractic manipulation that involve larger amounts of directed force and sometimes produce a popping sound (referred to as “cavitation”), this technique requires only minute adjustments of the atlas bone in order to initiate healing and pain relief.

What can I expect from my first atlas correction?
Your chiropractor will determine the treatment you need after a comprehensive evaluation of your symptoms, prior medical history, and x-rays. The degree of misalignment, along with the nature and severity of your symptoms, will determine how quickly you experience relief. You may also notice some tiredness or muscle stiffness, and in some cases pain symptoms may migrate to another area of the body. For most people, one or two Atlas Orthogonal adjustments are all they need to start noticing improvements.

Can all chiropractors provide Atlas Orthogonal adjustments?
No. An Atlas Orthogonist is a doctor of chiropractic who has completed additional specialized training focused on spinal manipulations of the upper spine and neck, using the Atlas Orthogonal percussion instrument. The Atlas Orthoganist is an expert in light touches rather than forceful manipulation, although he or she may offer several types of adjustments to their patients. Your Atlas Orthoganist will also have extensive training in the proper use of advanced imaging techniques. X-rays play a particularly important role in atlas correction, since precise measurements are required for diagnostic purposes and to deliver the treatment as well as to evaluate its progress in restoring proper alignment.

If you’re interested in learning more about how Atlas Orthogonal adjusting works, please call or visit our office today.
Looking for a chiropractor in Shallotte NC? Contact us today!

chiropractor in leland nc

Chiropractor in Leland NC: Exercise vs. Lifestyle Activity

If you are like most people, working out just for the sake of working out does not really appeal (although there are many dedicated gym buffs who couldn’t live without their daily workouts!). We all know that it’s important to exercise regularly if we want to live a long and healthy life. However, if you find the idea of trotting along on a treadmill for 15 minutes and then spending half an hour of working out on Nautilus machines to be about as exciting as a trip to the dentist, then this article is for you! Our chiropractor in Leland NC explains more.

Experts recommend that we get at least 150 minutes of exercise each week to stay in shape. But many people find taking this much exercise at once (or in three 50-minute stretches) too daunting. The good news is that a recent study conducted by researchers at Boston University that was published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise found that bouts of exercise lasting less than 10 minutes a couple of times daily, such as the kind you get when cleaning the house, were sufficient to meet your weekly exercise needs.

Over 2,000 participants were included in the study, more than half of whom were overweight. Motion detectors were attached to each of the subjects for eight days, and an average of half the participants met their weekly exercise quota of 150 minutes. The average participant met his or her quota with exercise that lasted less than 10 minutes at a time. The types of exercise ranged from moderate (heavy cleaning, walking briskly and sports such as golf and badminton) to vigorous (running, hiking, shoveling and farm work).

As long as the participants met their 150-minute per week quota, no matter the length of their exercise, they had lower body mass index, smaller waists, lower triglycerides and better cholesterol levels than those who did not meet the quota. Assistant professor at Boston University’s School of Medicine, Nicole Glazer, says “But this study really speaks to the idea that some activity is better than nothing. Parking a little bit farther away, getting off the bus one stop early-all of these little things can add up and are related to a healthier profile.”

For years, researchers have studied the effects of exercise from practicing sports or visiting the gym. However, according to Glazer, “This idea of lifestyle activity is one that is under-measured in research studies.” Activities such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, using a push mower instead of a riding mower, etc. can add up to a significant amount of energy expenditure. Experts still stress that it’s important to also get in some traditional forms of exercise and not merely replace it with lifestyle activity. Still, any exercise is useful.

“The levels of sedentary behavior in this country are alarming. So the concern that someone’s going to stop exercising and instead just get off the bus a stop earlier, that’s not my concern,” Glazer says. “The real concern is, is this a stepping-stone? Is this the way we can get inactive people to do any sort of activity? People will come up with any excuse to not exercise. I don’t need to worry about my giving them one. They’ll be able to think of something.”

Looking for a chiropractor in Leland NC? Contact us today!

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Chiropractor in Wilmington NC: Hiccups Explained

Everyone has had hiccups at one time or another. The ability to hiccup begins at a very early age. Fetuses of less than 28 weeks have been shown to hiccup, and this ability continues throughout childhood and into old age. It is believed to be one of the evolutionary remnants of our amphibian origins. Amphibians have a simple motor reflex similar to hiccupping in order to draw air and water across their gills. In the human fetus, the neural pathways that create hiccups are the precursors of the ones used for the development of lung ventilation. Our chiropractor in Wilmington NC explains more.

The diaphragm is a sheet of muscle lying beneath the lungs that separates the abdomen from the chest cavity. When the diaphragm involuntarily contracts, there is a quick intake of breath accompanied by a near simultaneous snapping shut of the vocal cords, which is what causes the characteristic “hic” sound of the hiccup. A hiccup is also sometimes referred to as a sigultus or a synchronous diaphragmatic flutter (SDF).

Hiccups occur singly or in groups, and groups of hiccups occur in regular rhythm. Although hiccups usually last only a few minutes, there are instances in which it can continue for longer periods. If you have hiccups that last longer than 48 hours, you should consult with your physician, as it is may be an indication of an underlying illness. Eighty percent of chronic hiccups are due to a physical cause, and the remaining 20 percent may have psychological origins.
According to Guinness World Records, the record for the longest attack of hiccups belongs to the late Charles Osborne, who began hiccupping in 1922 when weighing a hog. They continued for 68 years, finally stopping in 1990, the year before his death.

There are a number of different causes of hiccups, including:
* Eating or drinking too quickly, or drinking carbonated beverages, which introduces air into the stomach
* Eating spicy or fatty food, which can irritate the diaphragm, causing it to spasm
* Medications such as those to treat acid reflux and anti-anxiety drugs
* Smoking
* Irritation of the nerves in the head, neck or chest
* Abdominal surgery
* Central nervous system disorders
* Stokes and brain tumors
* Mental disorders

Increasing the level of carbon dioxide in the blood has been shown to inhibit hiccups, thus the origin of some of the hiccup “cures” that are reputed to work. Possible cures for hiccups include the following:
* Hold your breath and count slowly to 10, then gradually exhale
* Breathe into a paper bag or into your cupped hands for a minute
* Sip a glass of water, taking small, quick gulps
* Eat a spoonful of honey or peanut butter
* Gargle with water

Hiccups are usually a passing irritation that makes speaking and eating inconvenient. However, in most cases they will disappear unaided in just a few minutes.

Looking for a chiropractor in Wilmington NC? Contact us today!