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Chiropractor Shallotte NC : Single Sport Athletes

Youth Sports: Are Single-Sport Child Athletes Really More Likely to Succeed Later? Our chiropractor Shallotte NC explains the answer.

Especially if they’re athletes or sports fans themselves, it’s not unusual for mothers and fathers to have secret (or not-so-secret) hopes that their kids can become good enough in a sport to earn a college scholarship or go on to a professional career. Some parents believe that the best way to work toward this goal is to encourage their children-sometimes as young as 6 or 7 years old-to focus on a single sport as early as possible. The reasoning behind this early specialization is pretty simple: Kids who are not splitting their time among multiple sports will get better, faster (and be more competitive) than their “distracted” peers. In other words, the children who commit early get a developmental head start that will make them high-performers later.

While this idea may make intuitive sense, a new study from the University of California, Los Angeles (which has a reputation as a major power in collegiate athletics) suggests that the logic simply doesn’t hold true. In a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) in San Diego, Dr. John DiFiori, chief of sports medicine at UCLA’s School of Medicine, says that researchers can find no evidence that athletes who focused early on a single sport rose to elite levels in that sport.

To the contrary, most of the collegiate athletes surveyed were more like their peers, kids who enjoyed a wide range of recreational sports growing up, waiting until well into their teens before specializing on one sport. As DiFiori says, “Most successful athletes participate in a number of sports when they’re 6, 8 or 10 years old. That way, kids learn different skills and have the chance to discover which sport they truly enjoy.”

The study surveyed 296 male and female NCAA Division I athletes and found that 88% of them had participated in an average of two or three sports as children. In addition, 70% of them did not specialize in any one sport until after the age of 12. In a similar study on Olympic athletes, researchers found that most had participated in two or more sports before specializing.

While there are famous athletes like Tiger Woods or Andre Agassi who focused on one sport early in their lives, the research suggests that they are the exception and not the rule. The vast majority of successful collegiate or pro athletes dabbled in a number of other sports before settling on the one that brought them success. The data seems to indicate that early specialization may not help and may, in fact, be detrimental. Previous research has indicated, for example, that kids who train extensively in one sport are more prone to overuse injuries than kids who had more varied athletic experience, and played other sports as well. There’s also a greater risk of premature disengagement or “burn-out” that can come with focusing exclusively on one activity.

Based on this research, Dr. DiFiori feels that parents of kids who seem talented in one sport at an early age should allow and encourage them to play other sports. They may, after all, discover another sport that they enjoy more and are even better at. And-even if they do not-they will be exposed to sports that train them in a wider variety of motor skills. “Physical activity contributes to a happy and healthy childhood,” says Dr. DiFiori, “however, parents, coaches and children should monitor and measure their involvement level in a singular sport against the overall well-being and future success of the participant.”

If you are looking for chiropractor Shallotte NC, please call or visit our office today. We’ll be happy to explain our approach and answer any questions about cobalt. Remember-we’re here to help!

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Chiropractor in Wilmington NC: Endurance Sports & Nervous System

It’s well known that training in certain sports can improve a person’s endurance. If you’re a runner, for example, you know that as you continue to run every day or according to whatever training schedule you follow, you gradually develop the ability to run further, faster, and for longer periods of time. But did you know modern science doesn’t have a complete understanding of why or how this actually happens? Experts still have a lot of unanswered questions about the exact mechanisms at work when an endurance sport triggers these kinds of performance improvements. Our chiropractor in Wilmington NC explains more

When it comes to muscle strength, there’s certainly an element of adaptation at work—it’s clear that the phrase “use it and strengthen it” is every bit as true as “use it or lose it”. But muscle strength isn’t the whole story. Many long-distance runners would probably tell you that their coordination and ability to deal with rough surfaces and obstacles also seem to increase with practice. To them, it seems as if their muscle-brain communication has improved along with their muscle strength.

According to a study conducted at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel, not only may the runners’ perception be correct, but researchers may also have found one of the mechanisms that cause the improvements the runners are noticing. Their research suggests that endurance sports not only change the condition and fitness of your muscles, they also improve the neuronal connections to individual muscle fibers, based on a type of muscle-induced feedback, all accomplished through increased levels of a blood protein called PGC1α.

PGC1α seems to play a major role in muscle adaptation because it regulates the genes that cause muscle cells to change to keep up with the greater demands being placed on them. When your muscles are inactive (or diseased), they contain a low concentration of PGC1α. When the muscles are more challenged, however – for example when running for long distances – PGC1α levels increase. Professor Christoph Handschin and his colleagues in Basel have been able to show that this increase in PGC1α not only increases muscle size and strength, it also improves upstream synaptic nerve connections to and from the muscles.

The presence of more PGC1α improves the health of the synapses that link the muscles to the brain, allowing the muscles to change and develop new activation patterns, based on changing requirements placed upon them by the exercise.  Our chiropractor in Wilmington NC explains that in effect, the more you train, the more PGC1α is in your muscles, and the more quickly they are able to “learn” how to become stronger and more adaptable to challenges.

However, the most surprising part of this study, published in the journal Nature Communication may be that Professor Handschin and his colleagues were able to induce this same improvement in synaptic communication by introducing higher concentrations of PGC1α into the muscles artificially. As the researchers increased PGC1α levels, the muscles became stronger and the neuronal connections became stronger, just as if the subjects had been performing endurance training.

These findings are seen as possibly having therapeutic applications in the treatment of diseases such as muscle wasting and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease). As Handschin explains, “In patients, whose muscles due to their illness are too weak to move on their own, an increase in PGC1α levels could strengthen muscles and nerves until the patients can move enough to finally do some physical therapy and to further improve their mobility.” Then after some improvement to their muscles as the result of pharmacological treatment, the patients could continue to improve their muscle strength through practicing endurance sports.

But for healthy people, there’s a much simpler message—certain types of sports normally associated with endurance-building also build muscle coordination and adaptability.  Not only is this type of exercise good for cardiovascular and musculoskeletal health, it also seems to pay big “fitness dividends” for your body’s nervous system.

If you are looking for chiropractor in Wilmington NC, please call or visit our office today. We’ll be happy to explain our approach and answer any questions about cobalt. Remember-we’re here to help!

 

 

 

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Chiropractor Near Wilmington NC: Benefits of Cobalt

If you’re like most people, you haven’t heard very much about the health benefits of cobalt. And that’s not surprising—we generally get enough of this trace mineral in the foods we eat, so there’s no reason for anyone to buy any TV, print or Internet ads to promote it. Despite its low profile, though, cobalt does play an important role in our health and well-being. Our chiropractor near Wilmington NC explains why cobalt is important.

So what exactly does it do? Cobalt supports the formation of red blood cells because it forms the base of all coenzyme cobalamins, which are better known as vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is an essential building block of red blood cells. Without sufficient cobalt (and thus B12), there is a high risk of anemia.

Cobalt salts are not naturally bioavailable, so they must first be converted into a form our body can use. Ruminant animals such as cows and sheep have bacteria in their gut that converts the cobalt salts they get from feeding on grasses that grow in cobalt-rich soil into a form that the animal can absorb. We get that bioavailable form of cobalt for our own use when we consume food products from these animals. Some yeast and algae can also synthesize cobalt. Vegetarians and vegans must depend on these sources to ensure an adequate intake of cobalt.

Since cobalt is only found nutritionally within vitamin B12, there is no recommended daily intake for the mineral itself. The idea is to ensure that you’re getting enough B12 in your diet. For most people, this is not a difficult thing to do. However, individuals who have a problem with malabsorption—usually the elderly and those with celiac disease, as well as people with low levels of stomach acid—may have more challenges meeting their nutritional requirements.

In addition to existing at the heart of every red blood cell, cobalt is also important for some other body functions. It has been shown to help maintain and repair the myelin sheath, the protective covering that surrounds our nerve axons, which is responsible for the proper conduction of nerve signals throughout the body. Multiple sclerosis is the disease that causes the breakdown of this protective sheath, and cobalt is one of the treatments used to help alleviate this condition.

Cobalt is also good for heart health, as it decreases levels of homocysteine, a substance that damages the arterial walls, leading to arteriosclerosis. However, too much cobalt can also be dangerous. Our chiropractor near Wilmington NC explains that excessive amounts of cobalt can cause asthma, anxiety, and a condition known as “beer drinker’s cardiomyopathy” (an enlarged heart). This condition was discovered in 1966, when a Canadian beer manufacturer used cobalt salts to stabilize beer foam, resulting in a surge in cardiomyopathy cases.

The dietary sources of cobalt are essentially the same as those of B12: meat, milk, liver, seafood such as clams and oysters, sea vegetables and green leafy vegetables.

If you are looking for chiropractors near Wilmington NC, please call or visit our office today. We’ll be happy to explain our approach and answer any questions about cobalt. Remember-we’re here to help!

 

 

 

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Chiropractor Wilmington NC: All About Swayback

“Swayback” is the common term for excessive lordosis (aka hyperlordosis). It is a spine disorder that involves an extreme inward curvature of the lumbar area-that is, just above the hips. Swayback (also called saddle back, due to the fact that some horses can experience a similar condition) makes the backside appear much more prominent due to a forward pelvic tilt. Common among ballerinas and other dancers, this condition can also affect anyone at any age, and there are a number of potential causes. Our chiropractor Wilmington NC explains more:

The excessive arching associated with swayback puts unusual stress on the lower spine, causing pain (often at the inward curve of the lower back while standing or squatting) and potentially affecting mobility. Without proper treatment, swayback may also increase the risk of herniated discs.
Potential causes of hyperlordosis (summary courtesy of WebMD):
* Achondroplasia, a disorder in which bones do not grow normally, resulting in the short stature associated with dwarfism.
* Spondylolisthesis, a condition in which a vertebra, usually in the lower back, slips forward.
* Osteoporosis, a condition in which vertebrae become fragile and can be easily broken (compression fractures).
* Obesity, or being extremely overweight.
* Kyphosis, which is a condition marked by an abnormally rounded upper back.
* Discitis, the inflammation of the discs between the bones of the spine, most often caused by infection.
* Benign (harmless) juvenile lordosis-that is, lordosis in children. This often fixes itself as the child grows.
Diagnosing swayback usually entails a chiropractor or other qualified healthcare professional reviewing a patient’s medical history and performing a physical exam. He or she may also use imaging technologies such as x-rays, bone scans, MRIs, or CT scans as part of the process. While the physical examination may vary somewhat from physician to physician, the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) describes the basic approach this way:
“The health care provider will perform a physical exam. The [patient] may be asked to bend forward, to the side, and to lie flat on a table so that the spine can be examined in a variety of positions. If the lordotic curve is flexible (when the [patient] bends forward the curve reverses itself), it is generally not a concern. If the curve does not move, medical evaluation and treatment are needed.”

Additionally, if the patient is suffering from pain, tingling, numbness, muscle spasms or weakness, sensations in his or her arms or legs, or changes in bowel or bladder control, the doctor may order a neurological assessment.

As for treatment, the NIH says, “Most of the time, lordosis is not treated if the back is flexible. It is not likely to progress or cause problems.” Patients whose backs are flexible may be able to improve their condition at home by sitting less, stretching their hip flexors regularly, and stretching their upper bodies often (using a resistance band can help considerably).

If the back is not flexible, treatment is likely needed. Cedars-Sinai Medical Center describes the range of options this way:
“If the doctor decides that conservative treatment is best…[treatment] may include drugs to relieve pain and swelling, physical therapy to build strength and flexibility and to increase range of motion, braces to control the growth of the curve (especially in children and teens), and reducing excess body weight… If the curvature is severe and causing other symptoms, spinal instrumentation, artificial disc replacement and kyphoplasty are all potential surgical treatments for lordosis.”

For patients with swayback, chiropractic curve rehabilitation aims to re-establish the normal spinal curve in order to improve posture, decompress the spine and slow or stop the progress of disc degeneration. In many cases, this can be achieved without surgery or drugs using a combination of traction techniques, spinal molding blocks and lifestyle modifications.
If you notice any symptoms of swayback in yourself or in your child, it is important to seek proper medical attention. Doctors of Chiropractic are experts in diagnosing and treating musculoskeletal problems and are specially trained to help patients suffering from spinal conditions. We can help! Call or visit our office today!

If you are looking for a chiropractors Wilmington NC, please call or visit our office today. We’ll be happy to explain our approach and answer any questions about swayback Remember-we’re here to help!

 

 

 

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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!

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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!