Dr. Bell's Blog

What You Think You Need vs. What You NEED

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This conversation can be far reaching into many aspects of your life.  You may very likely think of your son or daughter saying "Mom...but I really need that toy!"  Throughout life we are constantly faced with choices on what to do or not to do.  These decisions are made based on a variety of factors, not all of which allow us to make a decision based on what is in our best interest.  I recently wrote a blog on the importance of mindset when it comes to your health, and whether you are approaching your health from a position of faith or fear.  This is indeed one of the factors in our decision making, but lets take a look at some others...

Short term vs. Long Term

I very often see patients in the office on their first visit who are in a state of crisis because they are in some sort of significant pain.  When this happens, and rightly so, they have a very short term mindset about getting out of pain as quickly as possible.  While helping them with this, I also try and get them to look at the bigger picture, and what they can do long term to help prevent a situation like this from happening again. As the saying goes, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Prioritizing

We all lead extremely busy lives. I completely understand this.  Putting other's needs and wants ahead of your own however can lead to an eventual crisis.  This is no more true than when it comes to your health.  Take the time.  Do what is necessary.  You will then have all the time AND health you need to take care of your family.

Misunderstanding

Sometimes the problem is as simple as not having or knowing the right information to make the best choice for yourself and your family.  This is also completely understandable, and it is why I am here to help you make the best informed healthcare choices possible for yourself.  Find a reliable source to help you with your questions (don't believe everything you read on Google).  When all the right information is in front of you, it is always easier to make the right choice.

Finally, in the end, the ball is always in your court to make the final decision.  We can have all the information we need, and the right people around us to help, but you have to deep down want to do the right thing.  Someone forcing you to do something you aren't ready for never has a good long term outcome.  Find your WHY, and the answer will become clear.  When this happens you will take all the right steps to...

LIVE well.  BE well.

 

 

 

 

 

What Does Your Healthcare Team Look Like?

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Caring for the health of your body is a team effort.  Just like in team sports, there are specific players who each serve specific roles. The role of each healthcare provider can be very different.  Some are in place for day to day care of both your physical and emotional health, others are there for you in times of crisis.  Lets take a look at who some of the key players are...

Who are they? 

  • Primary Care Provider (PCP):  This is your primary doctor who you will see for yearly physicals on the status of your overall health.  They will also be a portal to provide you with referrals, if needed, to specialists.
  • Specialists:  I will put a variety of specialties under this blanket.  This can include dentists, dermatologists, OBGYN, Ophthalmologist, Rheumatologist, and many others.
  • Alternative Care Providers:  This includes many practitioners, such as chiropractor, massage therapist, acupuncturist, and many others.

Why do you need them? 

Mostly it is important to just have a good team around you to take care of your health care needs.  You may not need all of them on a regular basis, but when you do it is important to have a good one.  They can provide a healthy dose of accountability, support, expertise, and a bit of perspective.  Sometimes it can be hard to see the forest for the trees when you are so close to your situation.

How do you choose them?

This can be a very difficult thing to do.  First, I always suggest to ask your friends, family, or another healthcare practitioner who they trust with their health care needs.  A positive referral can be one of the best places to start. Those close to you will rarely lead you down the wrong road.

In closing, there is something we say at the office which is "Everyone needs a chiropractor on their healthcare team". This is something I believe in wholeheartedly as I am not only a chiropractor myself, but I also have a chiropractor on my personal healthcare team. 

At the end of the day we all want to be healthy. Having a team like this in place will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle now, and tackle challenges along the way. The accountability and consistency found in a great support team will truly help you to...

LIVE WELL. BE WELL.

It's never too late to start building your team.

And if you don't have a chiropractor on it yet?

We look forward to meeting you someday, soon!

LIVE, Love, Laugh...NO Regrets

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Today, I am writing this blog with a heavy heart.  A friend, and wonderful soul that I have come to know in the past 10 years suddenly passed away.  He was a staple in the local triathlon and running community for many years, always had a smile on his face, and was tough as nails.  It is always hard when someone you know well passes away, but that much more difficult when it's so unexpected. I try and think these experiences happen in our lives to bring us perspective - perspective that life is fragile, never take one day for granted, and to live life to the fullest with no regrets.

To live life to the fullest does not mean to be reckless however.  I believe we still have a responsibility to take care of this body and the life we are blessed to have been given.  Does this mean by doing so we are guaranteed a long and healthy life?  Of course not, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try. Take care of the body you have been given, and be thankful every day you have the opportunity to do so.

No Regrets!

I believe that living with the regret of not doing something has to be one of the most painful things you can experience. In many cases as we get older our body naturally breaks down. Some of that isn't within our control, but so much of it is. Rather than find ourselves in a situation where it's too late because we've let it go too long, let's commit to doing what we can today to take better care of ourselves. Let's not wait any longer. Let's not leave life to chance. Get out and live life to the fullest, however that looks like for you, but don't live with regret. 

Travel the world. Experience different cultures.  Conquer a fear.  Do that race you have wanted to do.  Spend time with your loved ones.  Smile often.  Laugh every day. Don't take yourself too seriously.  Most of all just live YOUR life on YOUR terms.

I will leave you with this...

In life, it is always people and experiences that matter most.

They will stay with you forever...not things.  

RIP Joe....

LIVE well.  BE well.

 

 

5 Effective Natural Remedies To Relieve Headaches

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Headaches, including migraines, are one of the most common chronic health problems.  More than 15% of adults in the United States alone complain of regular severe headaches or migraines.  The prevalence of headaches is twice as high in women as it is in men.  Before we dive into some helpful remedies, let's take a look at the 3 most common headaches people suffer from.

Types of Headaches

Tension:  This is the most common type of headache. Close to 90% of the population will have one at some point in their lifetime.  It generally presents with a dull pain/pressure on both sides of the head/neck that is often tender to the touch.

Migraine:  This is the second most common headache that affects roughly 16% of the population.  They are typically, but not always, unilateral (one side of the head) and usually have some sort of trigger that will kick off the headache. The pain is generally throbbing and many times there is light sensitivity.

Cluster:  These are the least common (<1% of the population), but are the most severe.  They generally will come on very abruptly and appear in cycles that can last from hours to days.  Thankfully for the victim, they usually leave just as abruptly as they come.

5 Effective Natural Remedies

1.  Hot or Cold Compress:  Which one will work depends on the person as well as the type of headache.  In my experience with patients, the cold compress seems to be effective more often than the warm.  In the scientific community it is not well known why this works, but is likely tied to inflammation and/or blood flow.  No matter the reason, it can be very effective to lessen the symptoms of a headache.

2.  Chiropractic: There is a strong nervous system correlation with all types of headaches.  Removing nerve pressure/interference in the upper portion of your neck can not only help to get rid of a headache, but most importantly help prevent them from coming in the first place.

3. Massage:  This is especially effective for tension headaches.  Muscular tension will develop at the bottom of your head where it meets your neck.  This can produce and/or keep a headache from going away.  Gentle massage to the back of the head and neck can help loosen those muscles, relieve the tension, and ultimately ease the headache.

4.  Butterbur or Feverfew: These are two of the more effective herbs at relieving headaches, particularly migraine headaches.  Multiple studies have shown Butterbur in particular to reduce migraine headaches in those who suffer from them by as much as 50%.  Be sure and look for Butterbur that is "PA-free".

5.  Essential Oils:  Basil, lavender, and peppermint oil have all been shown to relieve symptoms of a headache. Massage the head/neck with a few drops of the oil mixed with a carrier oil like coconut oil.  Lavender oil can also be added to a warm bath for the benefits as well. 

Like many health problems, it's always wise to approach the care and correction of headaches with a big picture approach.  Look at all aspects of your life in order to figure out what may be causing them.  This can include diet, posture, stress, sleep, and many more. Taking care of yourself in a holistic approach can not only improve the frequency and severity of headaches, but can also improve the overall quality of your life so you too can...

LIVE well.  BE well.