This week has been what seems like an ongoing nightmare. I have
had a host of weather, car and house problems. The below zero
temperatures and snowfall have continued here in Chicago during the
worst winter I think I have ever experienced. During one of the
large snowstorms, water got into the FRM module in my car (not
entirely sure what that is, but apparently it controls the lights).
So I had to take my car in for some pricey and lengthy repairs. On
top of that, we have been re-doing our master bath at home, so our
entire apartment is a mess. There are tools, tile and dust
everywhere (or at least it seems like it to me). The good news is,
by the end of the week, I should have the car repairs taken care
of, the tiling should be finished in the bathroom, and we are
supposed to have weather above 30º this weekend and into next
De-stressing with the Olympics
One of the joys and stress-free activities I have had this week
is watching the Olympics any free chance that I get. I love
everything about the Olympics from the pageantry at the opening
ceremonies to the amazingly talented athletes, to the sense of
national pride everyone gets as they play out. One of the winter
Olympics events that blows my mind are the downhill skiing moguls.
Skiers absorb the impact of a series of bumps, and then show off
their ability to perform turns, flips, and other tricks on a series
of jumps. It's one of those sports that as you watch you are not
only amazed at what the athletes can do, but also that anyone can
actually do it. With the combination of the fast speeds, series of
obstacles, and massive flips, it really is one of the most intense
and difficult sporting events.
In clinic this week, I had a patient present with headaches and
sinus congestion. I particularly enjoy treating headache patients,
and I feel like it is one of the areas I excel in treating. After
going through a physical exam with the patient, I diagnosed the
problem as headaches due to cervicogenic tension and sinus
congestion. Most of the patient's pain was centrally located over
the area of the frontal sinuses. The pain was described as a
throbbing sensation, which changes with the weather, and is worse
when bending forward. The patient also has neck pain and cervical
muscle tenderness associated with myofascial trigger points, which
is characteristic of cervicogenic headache patients.
For treatment, I have been using a combination of soft tissue
work including: soft tissue massage, instrument assisted soft
tissue massage, pin and stretch, and post isometric relaxation to
the tight cervical muscles. I also have been using chiropractic
manipulative therapy to the patient's cervical spine, thoracic
spine, and cranium. The final therapy I have been using is
acupuncture. Acupuncture is particularly good for sinus congestion
and helping to drain those structures.
In Ethical Business Management class this week, we had a guest
speaker talk to us about clinical psychology. Dr. David M. Gursky
has his PhD in psychology and has over 20 years of experience in
the field. The main focus of the talk was being open to any kind of
pysch issues that our patients may have in the future, and knowing
what issues can be dealt with in the office, and which need to be
referred out for specialized care.
Patients tend to be more open with chiropractic or other
alternative medicine physicians because we focus on the entire
person, focus on the patient in their environment, and because of
the treatment setting. The treatment setting in most chiropractic
offices has patients gowned for physical examination/treatment,
requires physical contact, and induces physical relaxation, all of
which sets the stage for patient openness. Some issues that
patients might bring up with you include marital dysfunction,
anxiety, interpersonal issues, fears, stress, etc. Since well-being
is a combination of physical, mental and emotional health, it is
very important to help your patients with these psychological
issues as well as their musculoskeletal complaints, or refer them
to a counselor who can.
Again, during my downtime this week in class and clinic, I am
continuing my reading of Dr. Vasquez's textbook Migraine
Headaches, Hypothyroidism, and Fibromyalgia. I finished the
chapter on classification, diagnosis, and treatment of headaches. I
won't bore you with the hairy details on the types of headaches and
treatment, but there were some great treatments that Dr. Vasquez
Food triggers are the cause of many headaches, especially
migraines, and by pinpointing these triggers via a food/headache
diary you are able to remove them to remain headache-free. Some
common triggers include red wine, aged cheeses, sardines, sausage,
and foods containing monosodium glutamate (MSG). These triggers
contain tyramine, nitrites or other neuroexcitatory substances that
start the cascade toward a headache.
Another big cause of headaches is nutritional deficiencies that
are so common among Americans today. The standard American diet
(S.A.D.) is composed of red meat, sugary
foods, and refined
grains. The S.A.D. is severely lacking in a lot of the
nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs daily. Some
major things to supplement with to avoid headaches are magnesium,
CoQ10, fish oil, vitamin D, and riboflavin. Other treatment options
include myofascial trigger point work, chiropractic manipulative
therapy, acupuncture, and oxygen therapy.
My partner and I
This week marks the start of June, which is LGBT Pride Month.
Here's a little history of this important month: Lesbian,
Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month is currently celebrated
each year in the month of June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in
Manhattan. The Stonewall riots were a tipping point for the Gay
Liberation Movement in the United States. In the United States, the
last Sunday in June was initially celebrated as "Gay Pride Day,"
but the actual day was flexible. In major cities across the nation
the "day" soon grew to encompass a month-long series of events.
Today, celebrations include pride parades, picnics, parties,
workshops, symposia, and concerts, which attract millions of
participants around the world. Memorials are held during this month
for those members of the community who have been lost to hate
crimes or HIV/AIDS. The purpose of the commemorative month is to
recognize the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender
individuals have had on history locally, nationally and
internationally. My partner and I will be heading to Milwaukee,
Wisconsin, this weekend to join in this wonderful celebration with
close friends and family.
• First Patients and Jurisprudence Class
• Ideas for the Future
• Part IV Board Exams
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