If you’re one of the 4 million people suffering from fibromyalgia, you know how it commands your life. From debilitating pain to constant fatigue, fibromyalgia is a mysterious disease because there’s no clear cause.
What IS known is it can cause headaches, sleep problems, stiffness, and many other unpleasant conditions. It often accompanies other health concerns like Irritable Bowel Syndrom (IBS) and chronic myofascial pain.
It turns out, that some people are affected by trigger points for fibromyalgia, and chiropractic care helps them. Other fibro treatments include exercise, stress reduction, medication, and acupuncture.
What are Fibromyalgia Trigger Points?
Trigger points for fibromyalgia are small spots mostly around the joints. For example, you can find common trigger points in the hips, upper chest, upper back, back of the head, and other areas of the body. Trigger points are associated with chronic myofascial pain which is another mysterious disease that affects the muscles. Doctors call these trigger points referral pain because the pain radiates out.
Imagine having a knot in your shoulder and you have myofascial pain in addition to fibro. In such a case, that shoulder knot can radiate pain across your shoulder if someone touched it. That’s not the same type of pain as tender points.
What’s the Difference: Trigger Points vs Tender Points?
You’ll hear people use the words trigger points and tender points sometimes interchangeably but they’re not the same thing.
As mentioned above, trigger points occur from chronic myofascial pain and they can cause pain in other parts of the body. Doctors call this “referred pain.”
Tender points are different. Living up to their name, they’re “tender” areas on your body that can hurt even if someone gently touches you in the area but they don’t tend to radiate pain. These 18 tender points include:
Lower neck in front
Back of the neck and shoulders
Base of the skull
Back of the neck
In the past, doctors relied on testing the tender points as a diagnosis for fibromyalgia but now they realize they are unreliable indicators. Fibromyalgia symptoms change from day to day and no two patients have identical symptoms.
Ways Chiropractic Care Can Help Fibromyalgia
Chiro care can help fibromyalgia patients because chiropractic care helps your central nervous system. The adjustments reduce localized pain because they realign your spine. If you imagine the 33 spinal bones along with the interspersed discs, tendons, muscles, and nerves that all connect in your spine, you can why chiropractors say, “the spine is your lifeline.” Everything connects there.
Everyone’s body gets out of alignment through daily habits. Whether it’s repetitive tasks, hours hunched over a computer, or an accident, a muscle or nerve can shift a millimeter and find itself pressing on a ligament or spinal disc.
Regular chiropractic adjustments “put everything back.” When your body is in correct alignment, blood flows easier and pumps oxygen into every corner of your body. This helps your brain communicate easier with the cells in your body.
Your chiropractor can handle adjustments in a sensitive way. They’ll talk you through your most painful systems and devise a plan for managing the pain. If you’re suffering from tender points or trigger points from fibromyalgia, Dr. McQuaite is a Doylestown, Pa. chiropractor who can help.
If you feel tingling down your arms or shooting arm pain, you may have cervical radiculopathy. More commonly known as a “pinched nerve” in the neck, cervical radiculopathy can be excruciating. Or it can be a dull pain.
Firstly, no matter how it feels for you, you’re bothered by it, and it affects your life in some way.
For instance, below, you’ll see the typical symptoms of cervical radiculopathy.
But first, here’s what we mean by “cervical.”
Imagine the back of your head where the base of the neck meets your spinal column. Your shoulders extend from your neck, and from there are nerves, tendons, and ligaments that send messages throughout your body and contribute to your range of motion. When one of those nerves is pinched or compressed, that may be cervical radiculopathy.
For example, if you’ve heard of the cervical spine, that’s the area relating to your neck. Seven bones make up this region, and just like the entire spine, there’s a special disc that separates each bone. Those discs are known as intervertebral discs, and they help your spine stay limber. For instance, when you twist your neck to look over your shoulder, these special discs help with that mobility.
On a related, yet separate note, you may have heard of having pinched nerves in your lower back. As you may guess, this can cause similar feelings but down your legs instead of your arms. That’s lumbar radiculopathy. It’s similar but usually contributes to lower body pain. For the purposes of this article, we’ll stick with the upper body.
Now that you know cervical radiculopathy is a pinched nerve in your neck or shoulder region, you may wonder about the symptoms.
What are the Symptoms of Cervical Radiculopathy?
The symptoms vary, as you can see.
Pain radiates down your arms.
Numbness in your arms
Dull pain in your shoulders/arms
Tingly sensation in your arms
Less range of motion.
Left untreated, cervical radiculopathy or a pinched nerve in your neck can lead to permanent nerve damage.
According to Orthoinfo.com, radiculopathy has two common causes. In those of us of a “certain age,” it’s often caused by a breakdown of the discs in between bones, similar to arthritis. In other cases, a traumatic injury could cause it.
No matter the cause, it can be frustrating and debilitating. You might find yourself having to sit out of things you want to do in life. For example, maybe you no longer have the strength to pick up your little dog, or you find yourself in the kitchen unable to pick up a stack of dishes.
You’re probably tired of the pain.
What Treatment Options are There?
Fortunately, there are many treatment options.
Spinal decompression therapy
Traditional chiropractic treatments
Over the counter painkillers
It won’t be one treatment option in many cases but rather a range of things that will help. Each case is individual, so you’ll want to see your medical professional see what type of treatment plan will work well for your situation.
Yet, before you can treat it, you need to know your diagnosis, your physical abilities, lifestyle, and other specific concerns.
According to a recent study, some benefit from manual therapy, such as physical therapy or chiropractors. This can improve your range of motion and reduce inflammation. With some lifestyle adjustments and medical care, you’ll likely find pain relief.
In conclusion, in Doylestown, PA, Dr. Jeff McQuaite helps many people find pain relief from cervical radiculopathy or pinched nerve in the neck pain. He’ll conduct an x-ray and talk with you about your medical history to work out a treatment plan that makes sense for you. He offers traditional chiropractic care, spinal decompression treatment, and even non-cracking adjustments in his Doylestown office.
Has election season given you a headache? It’s no wonder. It’s been quite a ride. But if you’re prone to headaches regardless of elections, you may appreciate a natural solution.
Over the counter medications and Joplin medical marijuana (among other providers of this herbal remedy) can provide you with pretty effective, quick relief, but if you find you’re losing hours and days of your life to headaches, it’s time to reevaluate your options.
I mean, what if you could find relief and reclaim your life with a simple and natural treatment like a chiropractic adjustment?
Millions of people have found headache relief at the chiropractor’s and in a moment, I’ll show you how but first, let’s look at the three main types of headaches.
Do You Have One of These 3 Common Types of Headaches?
There are many causes of headaches but the primary ones are tension based, migraines, and cluster headaches.
Tension headaches can feel like a band around your head or an achy feeling behind the eyes. These headaches are usually caused by subluxations (chiropractor speak for partial dislocations) in your upper back and neck. Chiropractic adjustments relieve this because the point is to re-align your spine.
Migraines are another common headache. These affect about 12% of the population. If you experience these, you know they can be accompanied by blinding light or pain and can be triggered by anything from bright lights, noise, smoke, certain foods, and even allergies. While doctors aren’t sure of the cause of migraines, many patients do find relief with regular chiropractic adjustments possibly due to the release of potential nerves and reduced stress.
Cluster headaches are the type that cluster behind one eye or side of your head and can occur over multiple days.
There are other types of headaches that can indicate a serious disease, even a brain tumor so if you suffer frequent headaches, you do want to work with a healthcare practitioner to discover the source.
How Can a Chiropractor Help You Find Headache Relief?
Here at McQuaite Chiropractic, in Doylestown, Pa we start with an x-ray to establish if there’s anything unusual going on. Next, we discuss your medical history and the types of headaches you typically have. Headaches can be triggered by food, not getting enough sleep or other lifestyle choices and sometimes, we can narrow down the possibilities as we discuss.
According to the American Chiropractic Institute, 9 out of 10 Americans suffer from headaches at least occasionally. Some of you suffer on a more consistent basis.
Bright lights, noise or general anxiety can cause headaches. Even certain foods may trigger headaches in some people.
Did you know chiropractic care can offer headache relief? In fact, a 1995 study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that spinal adjustments helped study participants suffering from headaches. The study found regular chiropractic treatment reduces tension headaches.
Do You Spend Hours at the Computer?
One way chiropractic care can help is by re aligning the neck.
Millions of Americans spend hours a day at a computer. This often leads to stiffness and muscle tension in the neck and shoulders. Prolonged tension can cause headaches. If you move around and stretch at least once an hour, you’ll help keep the blood flowing in your neck and release some stiffness.
Plus, you’ll want to make sure your workspace is ergonomically sound. One adjustment you can make is raising your computer monitor so it’s eye level. That adjustment protects your neck and shoulders so they can stay relaxed rather than straining.
You might be surprised to learn, 70% of all headache sufferers have an impairment in their cervical spine. That’s not surprising if you’re sitting for extended periods of time with less than optimal posture is it?
The National Institute of Health agrees that chiropractic care can offer headache relief. Particularly for those suffering with migraines, spinal manipulation helped.
In makes sense when you think about it. When your body is out of alignment, pressure is exerted where it shouldn’t be causing irritation and tension. Chiropractic treatment relieves that pressure. Studies show it’s more effective than medication.
Your chiropractor can make recommendations for you and prescribe a course of action that’s right for you.
If you’re seeking headache relief, consider chiropractic care. It’s time you feel better.
Dr. Jeff McQuaite
295 Logan Street
Doylestown, Pa. 18901
Mon: 8:30 am – 12pm,
2:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Tues: 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Weds: 8:30 am – 12pm, 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Thurs: 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Fri: 8:30 am – 12 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 10 am