Month: July 2017

Chinese Treatment For Healing Back Pain

Anyone who has experienced a painful injury is all too familiar with its consequences, especially the accompanying unpleasant sensation and loss of mobility. Pain is the most frequent reason for physician consultations in the United States and results in half of all Americans to seek medical care annually. Chronic pain is the third most common healthcare problem and impacts productivity, mobility, and quality of life.

Pain relates to a sensation that hurts. If you feel pain it hurts, you feel discomfort, distress and perhaps agony, depending on the severity of it. Pain can be steady and constant, in which case it may be an ache. It might be a throbbing pain – a pulsating pain. The pain could have a pinching sensation, or a stabbing one. Only the person who is experiencing the pain can describe it properly. Pain is a very individual experience.

This article highlights several of the herbal formulas and supplements we use frequently in the clinic to help alleviate acute or chronic pain

In Chinese medicine, physical injuries, whether old or new, are considered to involve a blood stasis syndrome. When something doesn’t move, it creates a logjam and discomfort. The quality of the pain depends on what is being blocked-blood, Qi, yang, etc. Injuries which do not heal within a typical time-a few weeks-may become complicated by other syndromes, both constitutional (e.g., blood deficiency, qi stagnation) and circumstantial (e.g., invasion of wind or damp).

Often when patients complain of pain in any part of an extremity, including shoulder, elbow, wrist, knees, etc., I often pick an appropriate formula such as Pueraria 10 or Angelica 14 which may be appropriate for shoulder, neck, and head pain, with their focus on dispelling wind and regulating qi. For weakness and inflammation of tendons, Acanthopanax 10 provides pain relief and tonification to aid in strengthening activities.

For traumatic injuries such as exercise injuries, or falls I consider formulas such as San Qi 17 and Myrrh Tablets which are blood moving and blood vitalizing formulas. Both formulas include myrrh, frankincense, persica, carthamus, tang-kuei, peony (white or red), cinnamon twig, and curcuma.

Repetitive stress, old injuries, and persisting joint pain are usually treated by adding tonification along with herbs that counter the invasion of wind. Joint problems can be treated by Chiang-huo 13 for wind-damp accumulation or Drynaria 12 for deficiency syndrome.

For low back pain, I would consider a formula such as Eucommia 18 coupled with Acanthopanax 10. Eucommia 18 contains many tonifying and blood moving herbs. In many instances low back pain consists of tight or knotted muscles. The treatment principle is to remove toxins, nourish the blood and relax the muscle and tendons.

 

Regular Exercise Relieve Back Pain Problem

Lower back pain is the most common medical ailment on Earth. Every day, millions of people suffer from pain in their lower back which is often caused by muscle strain, tension, or spasms. While many people take over the counter or even prescription medications, there are safe, natural ways to treat and even prevent this type of pain from occurring.

Pain Relief

The first step towards treating the pain in your lower back is to get more blood circulation into the area. The circulation of blood speeds up the healing process and begins to reduce the pain quickly. This assumes that the pain is being caused by the temporary muscle spasms, tension, or strain. Here are a few quick methods you can use to start the blood flowing into the area.

  • Stretching
  • Massage
  • Application of Heat

Stretching helps to activate the circulation in the muscle tissues. Remember to not bounce, but instead to gently stretch slowly until your muscles start to respond. Massage can also start the circulation in your back as well. Be careful with massage as too much force can cause even further issues. Applying heat to the area may also loosen the muscles and start the healing process.Strengthening Back Muscles

Once your lower back pain lessens, you can take steps to reduce the pain further and even prevent some back pain from occurring by strengthening the muscles. While you cannot prevent all events of back pain from occurring, you can reduce the chances of experiencing lower back pain.

  • Walking
  • Jogging
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Aerobics & Yoga

The key to working the muscles is to do so indirectly through exercises such as walking, jogging, cycling, and swimming which help to strengthen all the muscles. Your lower back muscles act in support of these exercises which means that they gradually gain strength and tone while not being worked in a direct manner. Swimming is an excellent exercise in this regard because the back muscles can be worked without placing any direct pressure.Once you have toned your back muscles, you can then strengthen the muscles directly through specific aerobic exercise and yoga. Yoga is an excellent exercise because it emphasizes stretching, positioning, and creating enough blood flow to help build and tone the muscles. Plus, the stretching alone helps to break up muscle tension and combined with the breathing techniques and meditational aspects make yoga a marvelous means of reducing lower back pain.

Other Pain Relief Methods

There is nothing wrong with over the counter medications such as aspirin that help increase blood flow while taking the edge off the pain. You can use such medications with stretching and other exercises to help bring about faster pain relief.

Prescription medications are generally reserved for when damage has occurred to the muscle area, a more serious condition compared to simple strain or spasms. In the end, getting rid of lower back pain means a combination of strengthening, stretching, and increasing the blood flow to the muscle groups so your back can feel better quickly.

 

Steps To Relieve Back Pain

The first group of the 25 natural ways to relieve back pain will involve stretching. To do this you will need to hold each position for 5-8 seconds and do not bounce or make any swift movements. Do not move beyond the pain. If you feel pain, you need to stop.

Stretching Moves:

1. Lie face down on an exercise ball and move your shoulders forward slightly.
2. After sitting for some time, stand and place your hands upon your lower back, then push your shoulders back and hips forward.
3. Lay on the ground facing up. Pull one knee up towards your chest and then pull your other leg up to your chest.
4. While holding the above position, twist the bottom half of your torso to your left and point your knees to the 10 o’clock position, then point them to your right at the 2 o’clock position. Remember to hold each position for 5-8 seconds.
5. While lying on the ground face up, bend your legs at the knees and place your feet flat on the ground. Slowly push up your hip area until you form a bridge. The second group of 25 natural ways to relieve back pain includes back strengthening.
6. Do Hindu style squats. This will strengthen your lower back so that you are able to deal with every day rigor.
7. Do sit ups. Sit ups strengthen your abs but also takes the pressure off of your back muscles.
8. The Superman position. Lay face down and lift your upper torso and legs so that your body forms a bowl and hold the position for a few seconds.
9. The Reverse Fly. Lean over at about 90 degrees, use a 5- 10 pound weight in each hand, then raise both arms straight out.
10. Opposite arm and leg raise.Get on all fours, extend one of your arms completely and then raise the opposite leg and then switch to the other arm and leg.

Eating And Drinking To Relieve Back Pain:

11. Drink lots of water.
12. Avoid too much sugar and carbonated drinks.
13. Eat vitamin B-12 rich foods.
14. Increase your calcium levels.
15. Eat foods that are rich in magnesium.

Good Posture While Standing or Sitting:

16. If you sit for a long time use some type of lumbar support for your lower back.
17. If you are sitting or standing sit with your back pushed toward your tummy and your shoulders pushed back.
18. When standing or sitting prop a foot on a step stool.
19. If you have to stand for a long period keep your chest elevated,shoulders pushed back and your body straight to the ground.
20. If you have to sit at a desk for a long time, raise your computer monitor to a higher setting so you do not have to look down. Be sure to keep your head level. The fifth and final group of 25 natural ways to relieve back pain involves moving.
21. If you sit for long periods, lean to the right and left. Make sure to keep adjusting yourself.
22. Walk more. Walking strengthens your back muscles.
23. Bend down to touch your toes.
24. Be sure to move your head around.
25. Give yourself a giant hug.

The 25 natural ways to relieve back pain that I mentioned are only a few suggestions, there are so much more that will help with back pain.

 

How To Make Fun Mealtime For Your Kids

If you’re like me then you’re searching for ways to get good nutritious food in your kids’ belly but also finding ways to give them enough calories. Remember that as parents you are responsible for what is offered and where and when it is presented. You are also responsible for providing a safe and enjoyable environment during meal times.

Children on the other hand are responsible for deciding how much food they will eat and whether they will eat at all. Make sure you:

1. Offer variety of nutritious foods.
2. Offer foods that are safe.
3. Offer serving sizes that are appropriate.
4. Eat meals at the table.
5. Eat at regular times.
6. Serve as good role models when choosing foods to eat.
7. Don’t pressure or bribe the child to eat.
8. Avoid arguing or negative behaviors during meals.

Children should be eating at least three meals a day with two snacks. I’ve had parents think their child was “always eating” but when you broke it down they weren’t eating a lot of calories. They were snacking on rice cakes and grapes. I had one mom say that she thought carbohydrates were bad for her child and tried to limit them. Contrary to the adult diet kids actually need a lot of carbohydrates. Because kids are little and not eating a lot they need to have nutrient dense foods as well as energy dense foods.

A food is nutrient dense if the vitamin and mineral content is more than its energy or calorie content such as lean meats, beans, oranges, carrots, broccoli, whole-wheat bread, and whole-grain breakfast cereals. Energy dense foods contribute more calories than they do nutrients such as chips, sodas, cookies and ice cream. Remember to balance healthy nutrient dense foods with energy dense foods.

Feeding children particularly an underweight child can be stressful if you micromanage their meals. I know it’s tempting to chase them around the house with a forkful of food. But don’t. Try instead to:

1. Give them small meals that have both nutrient dense and energy dense foods and drinks.
2. Add fats to food such as butter on potatoes and toast, mayo and cheese on sandwiches.
3. Offer whole fat products, such as milk, cottage cheese, creamed soups, pudding and yogurt.
4. Add calories to foods such as fruit in heavy syrup and vegetable with cheese sauce.

Don’t forget to visit your pediatrician for a thorough exam.