CONDITIONS WE TREAT
The benefits of Chiropractic reach beyond relieving back and neck pain and profit people of all ages, from infants to the elderly.
Chiropractic treatment is proven effective against many common ailments, including:
Shoulder and Arm Pain
Numbness and Tingling
Stress & Low Energy
Work Related & Personal Injuries
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
TMJ: Temporomandibular joint disorders
Tennis and Golfer's Elbow
Sprains & Strains
THE CHIROPRACTOR CONSULTATION
At your first visit to our office, you will be asked to fill out our required forms. These forms help us learn about you and your condition. The doctor will then talk with you and ask you some specific questions regarding your condition to determine how he can help you. If it is determined that Chiropractic care will be beneficial, a complete Chiropractic examination will be performed. Nothing will ever be done in our office without your consent.
After a thorough consultation with the doctor, you will have a complete Chiropractic examination. This will include the testing of your reflexes, your range of motion and ability to turn and bend, as well as other standard orthopedic, neurological, postural, and physical examinations. Dr. Hamel will gain valuable information about your condition so that he will have a clear understanding of how Chiropractic can help you. If necessary, the doctor may order digital x-rays.
Digital X-rays are sometimes required to help determine the cause of your problem by observing the alignment, bone and density of the vertebrae, as well as the disc heights. The need for x-rays is determined on a case by case basis.
REPORT OF FINDINGS
Once all of the information is gathered and all examinations have been performed, the Dr. Hamel will give you a report of findings, as well as recommendations for treatment.
Our treatments consist of gentle adjustments, physiotherapy, stretches and exercises, massage therapy, an active therapy machine and spinal decompression. The Chiropractic doctor will determine which of these services will be most effective for you. Many patients begin to see results from the very first treatment. Chiropractic care is gentle enough for children and can easily restore function and movement to athletes and seniors. Additionally, our office participates in most insurance programs. We also accept auto accident liens and worker's compensation cases.
The goal of the Chiropractic adjustment is to correct the spinal subluxations sometimes referred to as a misaligned vertebrae that are detected during the examination. A doctor performs an adjustment by applying gentle pressure to the vertebrae and unlocking it from its improper position. The bone will then be free to align itself correctly.
Many people think that the chiropractor forces a vertebra back into its proper place, but only the individual's own "innate" intelligence knows for sure what the proper place for each bone is. The role of the chiropractor is to mobilize the vertebrae, allowing the body to do its job by moving the vertebrae back into the correct position. Unfortunately, the muscles connected to subluxated vertebrae get used to their abnormal positions and have a tendency to pull the bone back out of place. It may take several adjustments before the adjustment holds, and the bone settles back into its proper alignment.
If you suffer from any type of back pain, give Dr. Dennis Hamel a try. He has been practicing for over 20 years and has helped thousands of satisfied patients eliminate all types of back pain.
There are many different types of back pain which will discussed below. Here are some back pain symptoms:
Shooting or stabbing pain
Pain that radiates to other locations in the body
Limited range of motion in the back
Inability to stand straight or lay flat
TYPES OF BACK PAIN
LOW BACK PAIN
Lower-back pain is the most common form of back pain among Americans. It is one of the top reasons why people seek Chiropractic treatments. Lower back pain can commonly occur when heavy lifting or continuous bending and twisting. However, most causes of lower back pain occur during the normal everyday activities that we perform like doing laundry, lifting children or prolonged sitting at the computer and driving. Lower back pain can begin years prior to actually feeling it. The activities we perform can cause micro-traumas to our spine, which over time end up causing significant changes to our spinal structure and eventually major pain.
MID BACK PAIN
Mid-back Pain usually occurs between the shoulder blades, posterior ribs or within the 12 vertebrae that make up the mid-back (thoracic spine). Most people who experience mid-back pain or pain between the shoulder blades feel it when they twist, move in certain directions, or take a deep breath.
DEGENERATIVE DISC DISEASE TREATMENT
Degenerative disc disease is not truly a disease; it is actually the natural degeneration of your spinal discs as you age. When the spinal discs break down, the discs can no longer act as shock absorbers when you move. Degenerative disc disease can take place at any spot throughout the spine, but it most often occurs in the lower back and neck leading to back pain. Along with degenerative disc disease leading to back pain, it can also lead to osteoarthritis, a herniated disc, and spinal stenosis. Because of the breakdown in the spinal discs, these conditions can put extreme pressure on the spine and nerves leading to severe pain in the back.
Fibromyalgia is a disorder that causes extensive musculoskeletal pain leading to physical and mental interferences. It affects more women than men and can occur after trauma or gradually over time. Fibromyalgia symptoms include:
Aching muscle pain all over body
Pain when pressure is applied to tender points like the back of the head, top of shoulders, sides of hips, inner knees, and more
Awakening tired despite getting adequate amounts of sleep
The sciatic nerve is the longest and largest nerve in the body and runs from the lower spine down the back of each leg. If you are experiencing pain in your lower back that is radiating into your gluteal region or one or both legs, it could be an indication of a sciatic nerve or disc issue. There are several ways that the sciatic nerve can become irritated or pinched. One way the nerve becomes pinched is a bulging or herniated disc that puts pressure on the nerve. Another way that the nerve becomes pinched occurs with a spinal misalignment. When the spine is misaligned, the surrounding nerves are compressed triggering pain to be sent to the areas that connect to those nerves such as the gluteal muscles or legs. A deep muscle in the gluteal region called the Piriformis can also tighten up around the nerve causing Sciatica.
A complete Chiropractic examination including x-rays may be necessary to determine the cause of sciatica. This exam and x-ray can point out compression issues in your spine, misaligned or degenerative discs, muscle issues and more. From there, we can work toward healing your body's structure through Chiropractic adjustments, physical therapy, exercises and massage therapy and develop a sciatica treatment program catered to your problem.
Sciatica Symptoms: If you have been experiencing pain that begins in your lower back and radiates through your buttocks and down into one or both legs, it is likely a cause of the sciatic nerve. Because sciatica is a symptom and not a disorder, pain that is experienced from the lower back that radiates down the buttock, thigh, and calf could be an indication of a herniated disc, bulging disc, degenerative disc, spinal misalignment or spastic muscle around the sciatic nerve.
Sciatica symptoms include:
Pain that can range from mild to sharp, jolting sensations
Numbness or weak muscles along the sciatic nerve
Pins-and-needles feeling in lower extremities such as a foot or the toes
Loss of bladder or bowel control (This is a sign of a rare and serious condition; seek medical care immediately.)
Like back pain, neck pain can be present in many different ways. Essex Chiropractic offers treatment for many different forms of neck pain.
Some common presentations of neck pain include:
Decreased Range of Motion
Pain While Turning Head
Severe Tightness Sitting at the Computer
Pain Radiating into the Shoulders or Arms from the Neck
Tension in Neck Muscles that Increases with Stress
Neck Pain that Causes Headache Pain - Tension Headaches
Most neck pain is caused by improper posture such as an incorrect sleeping position or hunching over at a computer desk for hours on end. Neck pain becomes serious when it affects your day-to-day activities like rotating your head over your shoulder or sleeping. When neck pain affects your life, it can be caused by a misalignment in your spine that puts excessive pressure on the surrounding muscles, nerves, and ligaments. A chiropractor can provide treatment for the cause and cure of your stiff neck symptoms.
Whiplash is caused by an injury to the neck when the head moves forward and backward in a rapid motion that ends up placing strain on the surrounding muscles and ligaments and usually occurs in a motor vehicle accident. Symptoms of whiplash include:
Restricted joint movement in the spine or limbs
A herniated disc that causes sharp pain down one or both arms
Chronic neck pain
Neck pain caused by whiplash can become chronic if left untreated. Dr. Hamel can help to diagnose and handle the underlying problem. Visiting a chiropractor allows your spine to gently become realigned to its proper position allowing your pain to dissipate.
Neck Pain Treatment
Neck pain is treated at our office after determining the cause of your pain. We perform a thorough Chiropractic examination after taking a complete health history. We also take diagnostic x-rays if they are medically necessary. Once we determine the cause of you pain, we can treat you with Chiropractic manipulation, physical therapy, stretches, exercise, massage and physio-therapy modalities.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Neck Pain
Chronic fatigue is an interesting condition that worsens with physical activity as well as rest. There is not one test to diagnose chronic fatigue; it can be caused by a number of factors. However, the best chronic fatigue treatment is to focus on treating the symptoms.
Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue include:
Loss of memory
Radiating pain between joints
Sleep that does not impact your fatigue
Extreme exhaustion lasting more than 24 hours after physical activity
Your spine takes all the weight of your daily movements. When your spine is misaligned, it must work even harder to keep your body functioning properly. Chronic fatigue can be caused by a misalignment in the spine. As a result, Chiropractic treatment can be used to reduce the significance of chronic fatigue in your life.
Headaches can be caused by a number of factors. The three most common types of headaches are tension headaches, migraine headaches, and cluster headaches. Many headaches such as tension headaches can be traced to neck or cranial bone misalignments and tight shoulder and neck muscles. Fortunately, Essex Chiropractic has a number of answers for these types of headaches.
We always try to determine the cause of the headache through a thorough patient history, a complete Chiropractic examination and cervical spinal x-rays if necessary. Many headaches can be related to auto injuries, sinus difficulties, stress, tension or any other neck-related symptom.
Tension and Neck Related Headaches
The nerves of the neck, when irritated can lead to head pain that travels from the neck to the top of the skull and around the ears or the forehead. Sometimes the pain can radiate into the face or eyes. These headaches can make it difficult to think clearly.
Whatever the type of pain you have, a thorough Chiropractic evaluation will help lead you in the right direction. If at any time we feel that your headaches are caused by something that Chiropractic treatment cannot help, you will be referred to an appropriate specialist.
10 HEALTHY BACK TIPS
1. Exercise regularly
This does not have to be anything overly strenuous. Something as simple as a daily walk can make a huge difference.
2. Eat a healthy diet
Proper nutrients allow the body to repair itself easier.
3. Maintain good posture
Are you sitting up straight as you read this?
4. Stretch your spine before and after sports
This will also help to loosen up the surrounding muscles.
5. Don't overload your backpack or purse
Remember to carry it over both shoulders to balance the load (if possible).
6. Stretch your legs and back after each hour of sitting
Whether in a car or at a desk, stretching regularly will help to keep you from tightening up or injuring yourself further.
7. Never cradle the phone between your neck and shoulder.
8. Sleep on your back or side, not on your stomach
This helps to keep your spine in line and reduces the risk of hurting your neck while you sleep.
9. Invest in a good chair, pillow and mattress
When you think about the amount of time you use these things each day, it's worth it.
10. Have regular spinal check-ups
It's much easier to prevent a problem than to correct one.