March Madness

From the steady dormancy of winter, now we have the start/stop energy- want to get out gardening, but alternating rain, sun, cool, warm, windy or not… Patience and timing- applicable for life in general! Meanwhile, try to curb your enthusiasm out there weeding- beware of those repetitive stress injuries!

Just off the phone with a future patient with an all too familiar story. Car accident, immediate back and neck pain. Ambulances descend- off to the Emergency Room for cursory evaluation, as they are never happy to be bothered with soft tissue injuries, lumbar strain, cervical strain. No “treatment” other than a few prescriptions, maybe not even Xrays.

So what has been accomplished? Besides the further trauma and stress of being strapped down on an uncomfortable board and waiting long hours for attention, you have probably used up most if not all of your Med Pay insurance, assuming you had it. (please see my site Click or my most recent blog in January. )

My soap box message for this month is: Refuse the Ambulance! Do not allow yourself to be coerced into being transported to the Emergency Room unless you are bleeding profusely, can not move parts of your body, truly suspect you have broken bones, or are/were unconscious (not just the “blackout” from psychic shock). In the absence of those circumstances, it is just a huge unnecessary and unproductive stress, trauma and expense. Far more healing to go home, ice, take arnica or an anti-inflammatory, and rest. I don’t even recommend going to the E.R later or the next day, or even urgent care. Instead, within the next few days, seek treatment with a doctor such as myself, chiropractor or osteopath, either known to you or by referral from friends or family, experienced in dealing with motor vehicle accident cases, whiplash, back and neck injuries, using hands on rehabilitation– pain pills and muscle relaxants only help symptoms temporarily.

What supports our healing from any orthopedic injuries in general? Rest, sleep, modified physical activity and movement- staying mobile without overuse and strain, and, just as important but not always considered: good nutrition! An anti-inflammatory diet of fresh whole foods, fruits and vegetables provides the anti-oxidants your body needs to heal and repair. Fast food, junk food, processed food full of sugar and bad fats are pro-inflammatory, which translates to more swelling and pain.

Lemons to lemonade- can a negative event be a catalyst to develop better health habits in the long run