Child Snoring: A Serious Problem

Does your child snore? Do they have attention and/or behavior problems? If you answered yes, we should chat.

First and foremost, I am a mother—a mother to two beautiful, very active fraternal twins.  When my son was about 11 months old I noticed he snored.  He snored when he took a nap and overnight. He snored and he snored.  Being that I am a sleep doctor I knew what I was dealing with; but being a mother, I was scared to come to terms with it.  I was so scared to diagnose my son with something.  I asked family members and friends; to most, his snoring was “cute.”  They all told me stories about how all the kids they knew snored.  They all assured me that everything was fine.  Although, deep down I knew something was wrong.

After perhaps staying up with my son for many months, listening to his snoring and making sure he continued to breath, I had him evaluated for sleep apnea.  Sure enough, he had sleep apnea and we treated him. Fortunately, for my son (and my future patients) after one night of treatment he was better. As he continued treatment he continued getting better. He started feeding better, gaining weight appropriately, had decreased reflux symptoms, and his mom got more sleep as well. He was less cranky.  He was a happy baby again.

Sleep Apnea symptoms in children can include snoring, daytime sleepiness (needing naps after the age of four), very restless sleep and sleeping in unusual positions, heavy breathing, weight problems (can be increased or decreased BMI), symptoms of reflux, and behavioral problems.  

When a child is sleep deprived it can lead to symptoms that are identical to what is seen in ADHD. We are now seeing many children that have been misdiagnosed with ADHD when in fact they have OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea).  Once the child’s OSA is better they are better.

Any parent who is dealing with a child who has poor sleep should seek out a sleep physician. There are multiple treatment options available that will help to get your child sleeping well and you getting the relief you need.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fitness Planning Through the Holiday Season

As the 2017 season comes to an end for many endurance athletes, it’s important for athletes, casual fitness enthusiasts, and “weekend warriors” to understand what their “off-season” goals should be. More importantly, they need to understand where to focus to be set up for an optimal 2018.

Most of us are casual fitness buffs and weekend warriors. Therefore, you’re probably asking yourself, “Why should October, November and December be any different from other months of the year?” It’s a valid question. The answers are simple: holidays. Yup. Most either love them or hate them. Regardless of how you feel about them, you can bank on one truth: they’re going to happen. Not only that, they are going to be here before you know it. As each year passes, it seems to get just a smidge shorter. I was in Costco last week and saw a Christmas display—trees, lighted moose, reindeer, nativity scenes—the works. Seeing this dazzling spectacle merely affirmed the above thought.

Notice I said, “reasons” (plural) above. The other primary reason these months should be different we call periodization. If you’re not familiar with the term, perfect. You are among the 99%. Simply put, in this context it refers to cycling through different focuses of fitness building to enhance physiological adaptation of the type of exercise we are doing.

Fitness is not tangible and the biggest gains occur during rest/recovery. Is that an excuse to sit on the couch, watching bad TV while eating Bon Bons all through the fall and winter months? Rather, the opposite. However, the focus of workload should change to maximize your time and effort and allow for you to engage in those pesky holidays without throwing your body into a whirlwind of bad habits and stunted metabolic adaptation.

Setting yourself up for a sustainable exercise plan for 2018 should be the goal. This is where most plans fail; they are not sustainable, and frankly, they weren’t designed to do be. Consider the recent trend of Low Carb, High Fat and/or Ketogenic Diets. Most will take the principles of these “diets” and implement them to extremes and decide after a limited amount of time, it’s not for them. If you take nothing else away from anything I’ve written this year, please take this: The goal of ANY fitness plan or “diet” should be sustainability, if long term-results are desired. Period.

Considering the above as it pertains to fitness programming, the following must be considered: sustainability is built by allowing for adaptation to input (stress/resistance) stimulus while keeping the host interested over time. This means we must allow the body and mind to recover in both short and long term cycles. Hence, periodization and the impending “off season.”

Most of us follow a pattern or routine that we follow at the gym. Leg day, back and arms day, cardio day, etc. The problem is the body learns to adapt to these routines and gains become less and less evident because what once required an adaptation response is now routine and the system is not stressed in a deliberate manner to achieve the desired effect. To this same end, the runner who runs four ten minute miles every time they run will not get any faster.

If you’ve any questions about the seeds I’ve (hopefully) planted, feel free to contact me at rob@triactiveendurance.com

 

Your Health is the Best Investment

My sister in Pittsburgh, PA cut her left hand two weeks ago. She severed three tendons and the median nerve. She underwent a surgical repair without complications and after one week was prescribed physical therapy. She sent me a text message that said, “My copay for PT is $25.00 each visit and the Dr. wants me here 4x/ week! I’ll be destitute by the time I’m finished….”

Perhaps she was being flippant, but I was very surprised by her text message. I have heard this sentiment from patients who similarly complain and give their reasons for not doing physical therapy, despite my recommendations, but I thought that she would have a different understanding of the importance of following through with the medical direction. She is a dental hygienist who gets upset if she is speaking to someone who has gum line calculus that she can see. I also have enough of a rough idea of her financial situation to know that $100 a week won’t cause her to be destitute.

Clearly people have different financial capabilities and opinions of how money should be spent and in what priority scheme. Life’s complications and surprises may cause us to rearrange those financial priorities temporarily, but I believe that spending money to care for your health is always the best investment and choice.  Take my sister, for example.  Unfortunately, she isn’t able to resume her job as a dental hygienist for “at least 13 weeks depending on progress.” Her progress and a favorable outcome of regaining the full use of her left hand are highly dependent on her participation in physical therapy. As a pain management doctor, I see more than a few cases of people being injured and ultimately on disability for far less severe injuries. Furthermore, if she fails to regain the use of her left hand, her life will be adversely affected forever. In my mind, she can pay $100 per week for 8-12 weeks for a total of $800 to $1,200 and have 100% function, or she can avoid physical therapy, develop a chronic pain syndrome and permanent disability and loss of income that would far exceed $1,200.

Americans spend more money in many categories of non-essentials including: daily designer coffee trips, tobacco, alcohol, unused gym memberships, credit card interest fees, gambling, premium cable packages, mobile phones, pet toys and accessories, soda, candy, lottery tickets, designer baby clothing, speeding/traffic/parking tickets, television/radio/sound equipment, just to name a few. I’m going to tell my sister that she can easily afford her physical therapy copay simply by making coffee at home, not speeding, not upgrading to the newest iPhone, not buying one more pet toy for her dog, Gus until next year, or cutting out all soda and candy. I really don’t think those choices will negatively affect her quality of life… but choosing to spend money on her health might just save her life.

Healing Arthritis Naturally

Joint pain, known as arthritis, comes in many forms. The most common type is osteoarthritis, known as “wear and tear arthritis.”

Joint pain can flare up for a number of reasons—some of which may be overlooked by conventional practitioners. Many of my patients ask me if their pain is caused by arthritis. Sadly, it is estimated that one in five Americans has been diagnosed with some form or arthritis. There are over a hundred different arthritic conditions, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis being the most well known.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease causing inflammation in the synovial fluid of the joint. Rheumatoid arthritis is most common in the hands and feet and is frequently accompanied by a hot or warm feeling in the joint, stiffness for over 30 minutes in the morning, the same joint affected on both sides of the body, polyarthritis (more than one joint affected at a time), and pain that can last through the night. With this form of arthritis, most of my patients notice the pain eases the more they use the joint.

Osteoarthritis, on the other hand, feels worse the more we exercise and as the day wears on. Also linked to inflammation, this type of arthritis can be traced back to a breakdown in the joint cartilage. It generally affects the hips, knees, spine, hands and feet and develops as more of a wear-and-tear situation, whereas rheumatoid arthritis is closely tied with genetic factors that lead to an autoimmunity problem.

What you need to know if you suffer from arthritis.

 All forms of arthritis involve some kind of inflammation—either local or systemic. When injured, a chain of events in your immune system known as the inflammatory cascade is triggered. This is what causes the redness, swelling and pain we often see with an acute injury. When this process, known as local or acute inflammation, turns on and then off in response to injury it’s a sign of a healthy immune system. Yet when the symptoms of inflammation don’t disappear, it tells us that your immune system is unable to turn itself off when it should and therefore leads to a state of chronic inflammation.

How do I begin to heal my arthritis pain naturally?

  1. Adopt a healthy diet rich in natural anti-inflammatories. Choose a diet of richly colored fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and pure omega-3 fatty acids. Remove foods that contribute to inflammation such as refined sugar, white flour/baked goods, canned or packaged foods.
  2. Correct vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Vitamin, mineral and antioxidant deficiencies have been shown to suppress immune function and contribute to chronic degenerative processes such as chronic inflammation, arthritis, cancer, Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Special blood testing can reveal what your body has absorbed from your food and/or supplements over the past 6 months and zero in on what is deficient.  Micro-Nutrient Testing allows a person to know exactly what to eat and/or supplement in order to support their healing process. By correcting nutritional imbalances the body is given the building blocks it needs to naturally create its own anti-inflammatories and heal from the inside out.
  3. Class IV Laser Therapy. Ending the pain caused by arthritis requires stopping the cycle of inflammation. Class IV laser therapy is an excellent method for this, because it is presently the only modality that can both reduce inflammation and heal tissue simultaneously. Laser therapy creates an optimal healing environment that reduces inflammation, swelling, muscle spasms, stiffness and pain. As the injured area returns to normal, function is restored and pain is quickly relieved.

We have great success helping people solve the causes of their joint pain. If you suffer from arthritis it is worth your while to spend some time figuring out which of any number of factors are contributing to your pain—and which combination of therapies will help heal it. The good news is—you can do it without drugs, and you don’t have to give up any of the activities you love!

For more information or to set up a consult with Dr. Niele Maimone call 925.362.8283 or visit www.alignhealingcenter.com.

 

 

Solutions for Breastfeeding Complications

The World Health Organization recommends that babies be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of their life. They state that breast milk is the ideal food to provide the right vitamins and nutrients to ensure proper growth and development of infants. There is really no true replacement for the nutrition a baby receives through his or her mother’s milk.

While many mothers plan to nurse for that amount of time, quite a few end up giving up for reasons that seem to have no solution. On top of that, many practitioners have difficulty pinpointing the exact cause of the problem. Leaving both mom and baby confused and very frustrated. Quite often these unidentified issues actually reside in your baby’s spine as a result of a birthing trauma to the cranium and neck. Weather it be poor latch, improper weight gain, low milk supply, or pain and discomfort for the mother; these can all be explained by improper alignment.

Key Indicators of Breastfeeding Problems:

  • Babies that can only nurse in one position
  • Babies who cannot latch firmly
  • Babies who can latch but have trouble sucking, swallowing, or breathing
  • Babies who have trouble feeding from bottles as well
  • Babies who constantly seem hungry and never satisfied even just after nursing
  • Babies that seem to have pain, cry, or pull at their ear while trying to feed

Steps to help resolve your breastfeeding problems:

  1. Check for tongue and lip ties: This could physically prevent your baby from being able to properly latch. After your child was born, the hospital will check to make sure your infant does not have a tongue or lip tie. However, quite often can be missed by practitioners until your baby is a little bit bigger. Even if it was checked once, get a second, or third opinion.
  2. Have your baby checked by a pediatric chiropractor: As previously mentioned, there may be very small misalignments in your baby’s neck or cranium that can make feeding a challenge.
  3. Monitor your milk supply: If your baby doesn’t seem to be getting enough food, it is imperative that you do all that you can to keep your milk supply up. It is vital that you get enough calories throughout the day from healthy foods including fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, HEALTHY carbohydrates, and plenty of water. This way, once your feeding issues have resolved, your milk supply will not have depleted.
  4. Help your baby to stretch and strengthen their jaw muscles on a daily basis: Just like adults, babies need learn the proper biomechanics of their body in order to thrive. Regular and VERY GENTLE stretching and exercising of the jaw and cervical muscles can help set you and your baby on the right path for long term success.

If a misalignment is the source of your breastfeeding issue, an adjustment or series of adjustments may be indicated to correct the problem. As a mother of a seven-month old baby boy myself, I am fully aware of how terrifying that could sound! But believe it or not, an adjustment for an infant is incredibly gentle. The amount of pressure needed in order to make a correction, is about the same pressure you would use to check if a tomato is ripe.

If you are one of those mom’s who truly desires to exclusively breastfeed for the first six months but are contemplating giving up due to complications, please don’t give up until you have a conversation with me. Your persistence can have positive lasting health benefits that will continue with them well into adulthood. They will thank you one day.

Dr. Kristin Moore, DC is a prenatal and pediatric chiropractor at Align Healing Center in Danville, California. She offers a complimentary 15-minute consultation to the readers of ALIVE Magazine. Call Dr. Kristin at (925) 362-8283 to schedule your appointment.