My BAD knee, hip and shoulders….

Regularly, I hear practice members talk about “my bad” this and that. There is a TV show that is called Girls Behaving Badly, which I cannot say I have ever watched, but my mind sometimes thinks that we should get all these joints together for a TV show of joints running amok in the Caribbean, going wild and having at it.

Our joints and body parts that we label as “bad” make me curious. What makes them bad? Your answers inevitably are something like, “Ohhh. It is bad because I have arthritis in it, but my doc says that is just the way it is. I am old. So I have to expect the arthritis.” I have asked some of you already, “How old is your other knee? Or what about all the other joints in your body?” Deterioration in one area versus another is NOT normal and does not need to be expected or accepted.

While all the bones and nerves are the same chronological age, they age on their own depending on their alignment and ability to function normally. In the picture below you might notice upon close inspection, that the joints age differently in the mild and moderate arthritis pictures.

We have seen a few things in practice that may surprise you. Children can have arthritis in certain joints because of uneven load bearing or early age injuries. Another thing that may surprise you is that spines can regenerate. I just finished looking at an MRI of a patient’s spine who took an MRI upon the onset of care. The patient had a bulging disc and mild degeneration. After 14 months of chiropractic care, they did another MRI and found NO more bulging disc. There is increased disc height.

I have seen some of the worst cases over the 25 years I have been working in chiropractic offices: cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, multiple bulging disc, spinal stenosis, and varying stages of arthritis. What I have learned is that your body is a healing machine! It has the ability to change in ways that you cannot imagine.

I cannot guarantee how your body will heal because each of us is unique but I know for sure that you will heal more and faster when there is less pressure on your nerve system. So, if you are getting adjusted regularly, give yourself a pat on the back for helping your body to heal. You are on the right path!

Children and Sports Injuries Part One

Concussions

Grade 1 concussion is the most common, accounting for 90% of concussions.  It is also the most often overlooked concussion because it shows up in a very non dramatic way.  A player will seem:

  • Confused
  • Inattentive
  • Unable to recall a play
  • To mix up the order of things

In the sports our children play, concussions can occur when:

  • Heading the ball incorrectly in soccer
  • Tackling/charging in football
  • Checking in hockey
  • Running into goal posts
  • Banging heads with other players
  • Knocking head on ice or gym floor.

After writing this list, I have flashes of America’s Funniest Home Videos running in my head.  Perhaps that is what makes us dismiss these injuries and think that kids need to suck it up and that we shouldn’t baby them.  Having a second trauma after one of these seemingly minor head traumas can be deadly.  So it is worthy of our attention.

These children should be pulled from a game and observed for 24 hours.  If there is any loss of thinking ability or change in personality, sleeping patterns, activity levels, or vision for any period, kids should not go back in the game. Period. And there is something very serious that’s called second concussion syndrome-once the brain has been disturbed, if it has another trauma soon thereafter, sometimes uncontrolled swelling comes about, and it is almost 100 percent fatal. That earlier injury magnifies the effects of subsequent ones.

What can we do?

It is always a good idea to get your child checked by your chiropractor if they sustain one of these injuries.  If vertebrae is displaced, it can cause pressure on the nerves in that area and create future problems.  If you are concerned about your child athlete, please make an appointment to have their spine checked for interference.  It will NOT hurt and can make a world of difference in their growth, development and performance.