Thursday, March 19, 2009

How Heavy Purses Can Cause Back Pain

Large purses look great and are very popular, but carrying a heavy purse can lead to misalignments in your neck, mid back, and low back that could cause pain, soreness, stiffness and chronic problems. A good rule of thumb is that purses or brief cases should not be more than 5 % of your body weight. This means that a 100 pound women should be carrying a purse that weighs less than 5 pounds, and a 200 pound man should be carrying a brief case that weighs less than 10 pounds.

Put your purse on your shoulder and take a look in the mirror. Does one shoulder look higher than the other? If it does, imagine standing in a line for 20 minutes with your purse on your shoulder. I hope you agree that this is going to put some stress on your muscles and spine.

Please visit for more information on Dr. Susan Carter and Carter Chiropractic and Wellness.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

High Heels and Low Back Pain--My Four Hour Rule

I love to wear high heels just as much as every women out there, but there is a problem. Wearing high heels causes misaligments in your feet that lead to misalignments in your low back that lead to severe low back pain over time. When you wear high heels your feet are in constant flexion, which increases the curve in your low back. Imagine how the constant pressure wears out your low back.

The experts recommend you should not wear high heels for more than 2 hours at a time. I have developed a compromise that is actually effective. I call it the Four Hour Rule. Do not wear high heels for more than four hours at a time. These four hours would best be spent when you are socializing and want to dress up. If you must wear high heels for that morning presentation in the office, bring a pair of flats with good support with you to change into.

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I have to dedicate this Blog to one of my awesome patients that is in severe low back pain and continues to wear her heels. She is such a great dresser, and my mission is to convince her to wear flats during the day:)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

How to Fight Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is a gradual weakening of your bones as you age, which affects 28 million Americans. It is a huge issue, particularly among post menopausal, Caucasian females. Osteoporosis takes years and years to develop and does not have any symptoms. Early detection is important. One in two women over the age of 65 risk having a fracture caused by poor bone density. If a female has osteoporosis and has a fall, she risks fracturing her hip. Statistics post hip fracture are not promising.

As a Chiropractic Physician, osteoporosis is a huge concern. When I perform chiropractic adjustments on patients, I am releasing joints. Joints are the connection area of 2 bones. If the bones are weak due to osteoporosis, there is a risk of fracture. Awareness is key. Bone Density tests, which measure the strength of your bone, are recommended for women after the age of 65. Bone density tests are easy and painless.

The results of bone density tests arrive in four categories, and the number that is assigned to the bone density is called a T score. The first category is normal, which is a T score of zero or higher. The second category is low normal, which is a T score of 0 to -1.0. The third category is a T score from -1.0 to -2.5. This range is consider to be osteopenia, which is not as bad as osteoporosis. A T score of -2.5 or lower is considered to be osteoporosis.

Weight bearing exercise, sunlight, and including foods rich in calcium in your diet are extremely important to fighting osteoporosis. Developing these practices long term will help keep your bone density up. Bone is always being remodeled, which means that it is constantly being broken down and rebuilt. Constant nourishment is important because as people age, their ability to absorb calcium and other materials needed to rebuild bone decreases.

Supplementation is very important in preventing osteoporosis, especially in the low normal bone density and osteopenia categories. What is used as supplementation is very important. The aim is to get the material that will be most absorbed by your bones. For example, calcium carbonate, which is found in tums, is the cheapest source of calcium. However, it is not a complete bone food, it may be malabsorbed by people with poor digestion, and the antacid effect may interfere with digestion and cause gas. Calcium Citrate is a much better option. It is well absorbed, it reduces the risk of kidney stones, and it is absorbed by people with poor digestion. The BEST form of calcium supplement is Microcrystalline Hydroxyapatite Concentrate. It is a well absorbed Calcium source, it provides comprehensive bone support, and is provides organic constituents and mineral components.

A comprehensive supplement that contains Microcrystalline Hydroxyapatite Concentrate is available at Carter Chiropractic and Wellness in Naples, FL.

Please visit for more information.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A Natural Treatment Option for Arthritis

Xymogen (, a company that makes excellent, quality nutriceuticals, has recently created a wonderful, natural solution for supporting healthy joint function. Artriphen is a high grade combination of Glucosamine Sulfate, Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), Chondroitin Sulfate, Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin C, Manganese, Vitamin E, and Selenium. The dose is 6 capsules per day, 2 with each meal. People with allergies to shellfish should not take this product.

One of the main ingredients in Artriphen is Glucosamine Sulfate, which protects your cartilage and helps the body to continue to manufacture the components that cartilage is made up of. Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) helps to reduce inflammation and pain in the body. Chondroitin Sulfate attracts water to cartilage, which helps make cartilage strong and flexible. Hyaluronic Acid helps to reduce pain and inflammation in the body. It also supports and creates a watery cushion for your joints. Vitamin C is a key ingredient in making collagen, which is the baseline component of your skin, cartilage, muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons. Manganese is a key ingredient in normal bone development and growth and also helps the body to make the ingredients for cartilage. Vitamin E and Selenium help to protect tissues from everyday wear and tear.

These ingredients are an army that take on the everyday stresses in your body that lead to degeneration or arthritis.

For more information about Artriphen, which is carried by Carter Chiropractic and Wellness, please visit

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Did you know there are natural alternatives for Advil, Aleve, and Ibuprofen????

Who among us, with our busy schedules, and occasional stressful days have time to deal with annoying pain such as a headache or pain in the low back? What do we do? We do the easiest, quickest, cheapest thing we can possibly do. We take over the counter pain killers. NSAIDS, which stands for Non Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs, are the category in which Aleve, Motrin, Ibuprofen, Advil fall under. They dull the pain and you can move on with you life.

Of course, there is a catch....Long term use of NSAIDs causes many health complications such as severe digestive issues.

Bethesda, Maryland (Jan. 3, 2005) – According to a study published today in the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, chronic users of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have an increased risk of bleeding and visible damage to their small intestine.

Xymogen, a nutriceutical company, makes a great product called DolorX that can be used in place of NSAIDs. DoloroX is for moderate to severe joint pain and low back pain. It also protects your cartilage. DoloroX does not create the digestive issues that NSAIDs do. This is a herbal product that contains an effective combination of Devil's Claw, Black Currant, Green-Lipped Mussel, Willow Bark, Feverfew, Meadowsweet, and Birch. The precautions are do not take if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, on blood thinners, on anti-arrhythmic medications, have allergies to shellfish, and are sensitive to salicylates. The dosage is 2 capsules in the morning and 2 capsules in the evening. You can visit for more information on DoloroX.

All of the ingredients in Dolorox have therapeutic effects. Devil's Claw has anti-inflammatory and pain relieving benefits. Black Currant decreases pain and joint tenderness. Green-Lipped Mussel is a shellfish that contains 20% omega 3 fatty acids, which is excellent. The omega 3 fatty acids and other materials available in Green-Lipped Mussel help to reduce joint pain. Willow Bark helps to reduce joint pain by getting in the way of the release of pain causing substances by the body. Feverfew also slows the release of pain causing substances by the body. Meadowsweet is high in antioxidants, which help counteract pain causing substances, and it has been used for centuries as a pain numbing agent. Birch is used to help heal sores and relieve pain. Birch also helps decrease inflammation and muscle spasm.

There are numerous natural pain relief options in the market. It is important to use the most reputable companies in the market in order to get the best and most effective product. Xymogen only dispenses it top quality products to physicians. DoloroX is available at Carter Chiropractic and Wellness as a natural option for pain relief.

Please visit for more information. Stay tuned for the next Blog about another Xymogen product excellent for arthritis.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Stretches for Your Neck--The Sternocleidomastoid muscle (SCM)

The Sternocleidomastoid (SCM) Muscle is a big name for a muscle that starts behind your ear and ends up attaching to your chest. If you have ever head of someone who has "wry neck", then this muscle is definitely involved. The SCM can also get injured in whiplash injuries in car accidents.

How to stretch the Sternocleidomastoid Muscle:

1.) Lay on your back on a surface, for example, your bed.
2.) Let your head slightly hang off of the edge.

3.) Rotate your head as far as you can towards the floor.

4.) You should feel a stretch in the front of your neck.

5.) Hold for 20 seconds.

6.) Repeat for the opposite side.

These are 6 great stretches for your neck that stretch all the major muscles and many more. Doing these stretches on a regular basis will keep your neck in great shape.

For more information: please visit

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Stretches for Your Neck--Suboccipital Stretch

The subocciptial muscles are a group of muscles known as the "headache muscles." The suboccipital muscles are a group of muscles that include the rectis capitus posterior major and minor and the obliquus capitus superior and inferior. When these muscles get tight, they can refer pain from the back of your head to your temples. Three out of the four of these muscles start at the back of your head and attach to the upper vertebrae in your neck. These are not the easiest muscles to stretch because they are so small.
If you feel a headache starting, sometimes it helps to press the 2 bumps at the back of your head that these muscle attach to for 60 seconds with your index fingers. This may help to relieve the headache.
I found a good pic of the suboccipital muscles from

How to stretch the suboccipital muscles:
1.) Sit down with good posture.
2.) Tuck your chin down into your neck.
3.) Find the 2 bumps on the back of your head and touch them with your fingers.
4.)Push up towards the ceiling.
5.) Hold for 20 seconds.

Pleased stay tuned for my next Blog to learn how to stretch a muscle that strarts behind your ear and ends up at the front of your chest.

Please visit for more information.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Stretches For Your Neck--Posterior Scalene Muscle

Your posterior scalene muscle starts at the neck at the C4-C6 levels and attaches to your second rib. It will get tight or damaged in whiplash injuries. Also, a chain of lymph nodes lies under your posterior and other scalene muscles. When you get sick, like when you have a cold, you might notice a bump under these muscles, which could be an enlarged lymph node.

How To Stretch The Posterior Scalene:

1.) Bend head down towards floor
2.) Keeping head bent down, bend head to side
3.) Hold for 20 seconds
4.) Repeat for opposite side

The next Blog will teach you how the stretch the suboccipital or "headache" muscles.

For more information, please visit

Stretches For Your Neck--Anterior Scalene Stretch

Your Scalene Muscles are in the front of you neck. There are 3 muscles that make up the scalenes. They are the anterior, middle, and posterior scalenes. The anterior scalene attaches to the front of your neck at the C3-C6 levels and goes to the first rib. In addition to your lymph nodes, a group of nerves called your brachial plexus runs under the anterior scalene muscle. If this muscle gets too tight, it will compress the nerves and cause thoracic outlet syndrome.

How To Stretch the Anterior Scalene:

1.) Rotate head 45 degrees or almost as much as you can
2.) Look up toward ceiling
3.) Should feel stretch in front of neck
4.) Hold for 20 seconds
5.) Repeat for opposite side
Stayed tuned for the next Blog: How to stretch the Posterior Scalene Muscle....
For more information, please visit