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Posted on 12-04-2017

The Pain Killer Problem               Article of the Week December 4 to 8

I've been reading a lot of news in the media about opioid addiction lately.  Opioids are a powerful class of painkilling drug that, when used properly can provide temporary relief, but when used improperly can lead to addiction, overdose and death.  Over 2800 Canadians lost their lives to prescription opioids in 2016 and hospital admissions for opioid overdose have increased by 70 percent in the last decade.  Some of the more common opioids include fentanyl, oxycodone and oxymorphone (morphine).

The reason this crisis is of particular interest to me is because the number one reason why people take an opioid for the first time is because they have back pain.  Back pain is one of the most common health complaints across the globe, and the number one cause of job disability.  Whenever someone takes a powerful and addictive drug for the first time to manage their pain, they never suspect that they will be one of the unfortunate ones who ends up addicted to the substance.

When painkillers are used as a first-line treatment, the long term outcome is never good.  Subluxations are regions of the spine that have been injured over time due to repetitive use, poor posture, sports or work injuries and day-to-day stress.  Subluxations are the #1 cause of back pain!  Subluxations cause inflammation and also put pressure on the nerve system.  Simply by reducing this pressure on the nerve system many of back pain sufferers could experience relief without pharmaceuticals.

Exercise is equally important.  A study published in October 2017 found that those people that regularly exercised had a 33% reduced risk of experiencing lower back pain.  On top of that, the severity and disability of lower back pain were also lower in people who exercised.  Exercise is defined as stretching, strengthening or aerobic (walking, jogging, cycling, swimming) activity performed 2-3 times per week.  For more information on the study, you can go to the following link:  https://academic.oup.com/aje/advance-article-abstract/doi/10.1093/aje/kwx337/4557909?redirectedFrom=fulltext

If you are out of the habit of performing lower back strengthening and stretching exercises I would recommend spending 10 minutes a day at least 3 days a week to reduce the odds of experiencing lower back pain in the future.  If you need suggestions, please ask the girls for a lower back stretch sheet.  My favourite lower back strengthening exercise is the plank which I wrote about in my article of the week a few weeks ago.

In addition, spend as little time sitting as possible, and stand, walk or move whenever you can.  Chronic sitting is also a recipe for a sore back.  Equally important is working on your postural corrective exercises such as your denneroll.  Simply by getting your body more aligned over your centre of gravity will reduce stress on your whole spine.

It's almost the New Year, and I find that this is a perfect time to start incorporating more movement into your day-to-day activity.  Don't wait until January 1st!  While others are back-sliding through the holidays, you could be entering the New Year with momentum!  And if you know anyone who is currently taking painkillers, make sure you take advantage of this last week to send them a Gift of Health.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Tim

Grace Chiropractic – 1-3230 Monarch Drive – 705-323-9100 – http://gracechiropractic.ca

Upcoming Closures: Monday December 11 2017 – Afternoon only 

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For the first time in 10 years I didn't have a headache when I woke up - after only one adjustment!

Orillia, ON

Highly recommend Grace Chiropractic. Their approach to chiropractic care is truly life changing. Myself and my family have all been customers of Grace and have had excellent experiences. Since starting my program with Dr. Tim I have experienced significant relief and continue to receive treatments weekly!

Bromley Automotive
Orillia, ON

I have been seeing Dr. Tim and his team since December 2016. I am grateful for every adjustment I've received. Instead of just treating your current ailment, Dr. Tim goes after the overall health of your spine and nervous system as you will learn at your info session. I came to Dr. Tim with tingling hands and numbness in both my arms, not only has this improved but I'd say by February I was feeling the best I've felt for the past 7 years.....body, mind and soul. And I have my Grace team, my denne roll and the few stretches Dr. Tim has given me to thank for it! So what are you waiting for.....give my Grace family a call today....you will not regret it!!

Laura Finlay
Orillia, ON

I have been attending Grace Chiropractic for many years now. Dr Tim was the first chiropractor I saw, and he is is much more than just a chiropractor. Dr Tim and the rest of the office staff are so focused on the well being, mind, body and soul, of each of their patients. You never walk into the office without a warm greeting, and you always leave with an uplifted spirit. Dr Tim not only makes adjustments and corrects any pain, but he gives you the tools to adjust your lifestyle to ensure you are the healthiest version of yourself. I am very grateful to all the staff at Grace Chiropractic!

Rebecca Ruiter
Orillia, ON