WHAT GOES WRONG WHEN YOU HIT A POTHOLE?
Well if you’re lucky, nothing initially, but these bumps we tend to hit from time to time along the road of life (i.e. infertility, stress, and eventually pregnancy) are all hazards in a sense. These little - often unnoticeable - stressors overtime (and if left untreated) can cause major damage to your vehicle… also know as your Body. This car analogy is not unfamiliar to me; in fact these words (almost verbatim) are the ones I preached for nearly a decade, as I led round after round of Yoga Teacher Training. Each time, I would get up on my soapbox to a new group of trainees and emphasize the importance of maintaining safety and alignment in a yoga pose, with respect to repetitive conditioning and its influence on our bodies (both positively and negatively). And yet more recently, I was ignoring the very advice I harped on for so long! For months on end, I was going about my day not feeling well, all the while chalking it up to the side effects of motherhood (from nursing an infant to now picking up a toddler). What began as infrequent initial aches in the neck and back along with some fatigue, had inevitably progressed into sheer exhaustion and consistent moderate pain – so much so that the mere act of turning my chin towards my shoulder was becoming a challenging feat (and would prove dangerous, when behind the wheel).
This for me was the tipping point, and ironically it was the act of being in car when that misaligned car analogy would resurface. How had I managed to let myself continue down a path of discomfort for so long without seeking care?
YOUR CHILDREN ARE WATCHING YOU… AND WANT TO BE LIKE YOU
I was in a lot of pain, not to mention burnt out, due to repetitive conditioning… though not a result of improper form on my mat, but from life’s daily stressors layered over years of unresolved emotional trauma (thanks again infertility). I had failed to mother myself and in doing so I was unable to be the best mother I could for my daughter, let alone lead by example. For instance, if I never drank my 8 glasses of water a day, how could I ask her to drink more (water)? So if I never sought out a Doctor for the relief of my ailments, how could I teach her the importance of staying healthy and strong? I knew I needed to put my own oxygen mask on first – figure out how to prioritize my health as I had done so well during all those years of trying to conceive and throughout my pregnancy. Except, this time fertility acupuncture would not be a feasible solution, largely because of the time constraint (coupled with a lack of childcare).
EMPOWERING HEALTHY FAMILIES
I first came across The Wellness Path Chiropractic Center when I learned of a free webinar Dr. Vic Manzo was delivering titled: The Rise of Infertility in Women, which highlighted the why behind the sudden influx of infertility and even offered holistic solutions for addressing this growing problem. One week later, a similar webinar was offered, titled: The Rise of Infertility in Men. I was blown away, and not just by the content, but also in approach – here was a seasoned wellness professional offering a wealth of very helpful information and at NO cost! Turns out, that's exactly what The Wellness Path is all about… education! They are a holistic healing center focusing on the needs of pediatrics and families, in fact their very tagline says it all: “empowering healthy families.”
I knew I had to see if this place was too good to be true! The first time I stepped in to inquire about services I witnessed a sense of community: a smiling staff that greeted me the minute I opened the door, happy kiddos coloring in the lobby, there was even a wall full of 2019 goals posted by its members. This place just felt right in so many ways! Oh… and that time constraint and lack of childcare issue I spoke of earlier – not so much an issue at all! Adjustments typically take roughly 10 mins (or less) and there is a dedicated staff and lobby full of books and activities to keep your little one content and occupied!
Keep your spine young, while helping to keep the brain young!
GAS VS BRAKE… I know, more car analogies!
We all want to be healthy, but sometimes we may not know the path. Did you know, that research shows how well your spine moves is responsible for 60-70% of recharging your brain’s batteries? To put it simply, movement is what keeps your brain young. Chiropractic care is what improves and maintains movement to the spine, which results in a healthier brain. Chiropractic adjustments correct the misalignments (or “subluxations”, as referred to at The Wellness Path) within the spine created by stress and tension on the nerves. This stress causes the Central Nervous System to go into a protective state of fight or flight. By turning on the Brake (vs Gas) pedal – a.k.a. the Parasympathetic Nervous System – rest, relaxation, digestion and immune functions improve; along with growth, healing, and development all restored. Chiropractic care is actually proven to be one of the only ways to maintain Brake pedal over time!
“Look well to the spine for the cause of disease.” - Hippocrates
RECONNECTING THE BRAIN
In order to triage the pain, regain range of motion and energy Dr. Vic would first need to locate the subluxation. The Wellness Path uses a series of 3 spinal-neural tests to do this, which all tell the doctor how stress is impacting overall health and well-being. It precisely detects where and how deep the problem is!
The Pulse Wave Profiler helps the doctor determine your overall ability to adapt to the environment. Heart Rate Variability testing is today’s gold standard in analyzing the overall effects of stress and anxiety in patients of any age, its no wonder this is referred to as a Quality of Life assessment.
- I received a score of 69, with Gas pedal (Sympathetic Nervous System dominating). AH HA! Now it makes sense why I always feel so tired, my reserves have been drained trying while constantly getting caught in the “fight-flight” response! After seeking Chiropractic care, the goal is to get to the green box, which is associated with better adaptability and a healthier lifestyle.
The Surface EMG exam evaluates the function of the muscles that support and move your spine, measuring how much energy is needed to maintain your posture and how it is distributed throughout the muscles. Over time, daily stress can continue to overwork these muscles, causing them to lose their support and mobility.
- I scored 76 (out of 100), with the most prominent disorganization showing up in the C5 and C7 regions (Cervical spine), along with some mild to moderate disorganization in T8 through L3 (Thoracic spine).
The Thermal Scan is used to assess the part of your nervous system that helps to control your organs, glands, and blood vessels. The instrument measures the differences in temperature along the spine, in order to determine where stress is building up and how deeply it affects bodily functions.
- I was 89, with a mild spike in the C2 and C3 region (indicative of immune digestion and ear/nose/throat dysfunction), along with some major disorganization appearing in the T3 – T12 region of the spin
WE LIVE OUR ENTIRE LIVES THROUGH OUR NERVOUS SYSTEM
Every movement, sensation, emotion and organ function is under the guidance of the nerves. Chronic stress and body tension are damaging to everyone’s health. Dr. Vic summarized an overall result of the tests into a single index (or CoreScore). My quantifiable personal neural efficiency index was 76 (TRANSITION). He also designed a personalized care plan with a goal of moving towards a 100 (near perfect spinal nerve function) – in order to relieve my pain/discomfort, along with a few other personal longer-term goals:
- Fertility, &
- Improvement to overall health
REPAIR & RESTORATION – the 1st part of the care process
This phase of care works similar to an Anti-lock Braking System on your vehicle. Stress and tension have been building for quite some time, so it would only make sense that one adjustment would not accomplish very much, but rather repeat adjustments (a.k.a. “pumping the brakes”) over a period of time would be required.
The goal is to: Balance and heal (“brake pedal”) Reduce chronic stress response (fight or flight) Decrease neuro-muscular tension (total energy)
And now for the timeline…
RESCUE phase - 3x/week for 12 weeks
RECOVERY phase - 2x/week for 5-6 months
WELLNESS CARE phase - 1x/week following
CONSISTENT ACTION GETS RESULTS
I must admit, I was somewhat skeptical; I mean, how could a 10 min session 3 times a week possibly create an impact similar to what I had experienced with acupuncture (a 60 min session once a week)? Well, that's the beauty of consistency! 3 weeks into the RESCUE phase and truthfully my only regret is not having gone months ago! By ignoring all the warning signs, I was putting my health at risk and in turn – the health of my family. I am so pleased with the initial results of being treated by The Wellness Path, including: minimal neck pain, better range of motion, more energy, even my sleep has improved (*another side benefit of receiving Chiropractic care). I used to wake feeling stressed and I now look forward to my days – especially those when I’m visiting the Chiropractor.
I will be sharing more updates along the way over the next several months.
I hope you will join me on my road to recovery!