Health-E-News October 2012
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Chiropractic Advice for Moms-to-Be
As many new mothers can attest, the muscle strains of pregnancy are very real and can be more than just a nuisance. The average weight gain of 25 to 35 pounds, combined with the increased stress placed on the body by the baby, may result in severe discomfort. Studies have found that about half of all expectant mothers will develop low-back pain at some point during their pregnancies.
During pregnancy, a woman's center of gravity almost immediately begins to shift forward to the front of her pelvis. Although a woman's sacrum-or posterior section of the pelvis-has enough depth to enable her to carry a baby, the displaced weight still increases the stress on her joints. As the baby grows in size, the woman's weight is projected even farther forward, and the curvature of her lower back is increased, placing extra stress on the spinal disks. In compensation, the normal curvature of the upper spine increases, as well.
While these changes sound dramatic, pregnancy hormones help loosen the ligaments attached to the pelvic bones. But even these natural changes designed to accommodate the growing baby can result in postural imbalances, making pregnant women prone to having awkward trips and falls.
How Can Your Doctor of Chiropractic Help?
Before you become pregnant, your doctor of chiropractic can detect any imbalances in the pelvis or elsewhere in your body that could contribute to pregnancy discomfort or possible neuromusculoskeletal problems after childbirth.
Many pregnant women have found that chiropractic adjustments provide relief from the increased low-back pain brought on by pregnancy. Chiropractic manipulation is safe for the pregnant woman and her baby and can be especially attractive to those who are trying to avoid medications in treating their back pain. Doctors of chiropractic can also offer nutrition, ergonomic, and exercise advice to help a woman enjoy a healthy pregnancy.
Chiropractic care can also help after childbirth. In the eight weeks following labor and delivery, the ligaments that loosened during pregnancy begin to tighten up again. Ideally, joint problems brought on during pregnancy from improper lifting or reaching should be treated before the ligaments return to their pre-pregnancy state-to prevent muscle tension, headaches, rib discomfort, and shoulder problems.
Children are eating as much salt as adults, according to a new report, and experts are concerned.
Most adults consume too much sodium and that can have serious health implications. Too much salt in a person's diet can raise your blood pressure; high blood pressure increases the risk for heart disease and stroke.
In this new study, published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, researchers found that if a child is overweight and eats as much salt as an adult, the risk for high blood pressure goes up dramatically.
So why do heavier children appear to be at higher risk for hypertension or high blood pressure? Scientists can't explain it fully, but they've found that overweight kids tend to be more sensitive to salt's effect on the body.
Let's take a quick look at our anatomy to get a better picture. When we eat more salt, we retain more water. Part of the water ends up in our blood stream, increasing the volume of blood and causing the heart to pump harder to move the extra blood. Blood pressure increases as a result.
Over time, the increase in pressure causes wear and tear on the walls of our blood vessels, making it easier for fat-like substances to build up and narrow the vessel. The accumulation of those substances may lead to a heart attack or stroke.
Parents can reduce their child's chances of developing high blood pressure. Most of the sodium we eat comes from packaged, processed or restaurant food.
Whether you eat out or eat at home, make sure fresh fruits and vegetables are the largest part of your child's meal.
Blood Pressure Out of Control? Try Chiropractic
Nearly 1 in 3 Americans suffers from high blood pressure and more than half don’t have it under control, says a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the report, most people with uncontrolled high blood pressure have health insurance and had actually seen a doctor at least twice in the previous year, yet their condition remained unmanaged.
High blood pressure is defined as a reading of 140/90 mm Hg or higher (if either the top or bottom number meets the threshold, blood pressure is considered high). Having high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke: hypertensive people are four times more likely to die from a stroke and three times more likely to die from heart disease than people with normal pressure, according to CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden. Together, those two conditions cause nearly 1,000 deaths a day in the U.S. and account for $131 billion in yearly health-care costs. “[High blood pressure] is public health enemy No. 2, second to tobacco,” said Frieden in a teleconference on Tuesday.