In the course of providing care to my patients, I am amazed by what people consider as “normal.” In most cases, what occurs happens slowly, gradually, over time. The body adapts to its situation. And this may occur so slowly even manifestations of pains or problems may be considered a part of their every day lives. Here are a few examples related to office work.
One patient came in for extreme low back pain. While in the office during the first visit, the patient was previously diagnosed as having Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. They explained they found they were dropping things and that their wrist hurt. While this may have been accurate when originally diagnosed years ago, she no longer had Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. The experienced problem was from a different nerve’s compression. Moreover, this nerve compression was not the typical, Chiropractic subluxation. In this case, it came from the work environment. At the desk, the patient placed a forearm on the edge so that it effectively stopped nerve flow, near the elbow. In addition to traditional chiropractic care, the easy, simple solution involved altering hand and forearm position at work. This removed the external cause of her problem.
Another patient came in with years of recurring headaches. This person spends hours and hours daily working on their computer. This involves hours and hours of studying the computer’s screen. What we found is the patient would consistently lean forward and rest their chin on their hand. This caused an upward pressure through the chin, shifting their normal level of gaze. So, when the person was outside of work, their head, spine, and musculature were always misaligned. Added to this, the abnormal field of gaze caused dizziness and helped fuel the headaches. In fact, this position felt so “normal” to this person, they would “crack” themselves to re-create it. As a result, the hardest part of care for this person wasn’t on the Chiropractic end, it was in breaking old, bad habits and the false, destructive, sense of “normal.”
Yet another patient came in with about a year’s worth of daily headaches and a daily upper back pain. In their case, they were able to eventually piece together the back pain and headaches increased and decreased simultaneously. This person also spends the entire workday at a desk, on the phone, and on a computer. In addition to Chiropractic care, the patient followed suggested changes to their work environment. These changes altered the stress points on her anatomy. As this patient’s care progresses, we are now at more then 3 weeks between episodes of either the upper back pain or the headaches.
Health is not simply a lack of pain. Nor is it something that occurs entirely naturally in today’s office work environments. We must work and plan to reach and maintain it at a high level. As a Doctor of Chiropractic, I believe in finding causes and solutions, not masking of symptoms. Visits to your Chiropractor can be an easy, drug-free, long-term solution to a chronic problem, even one with an external cause.