Chiropractic is the third largest health profession, after medicine and dentistry. Chiropractic care is safe, effective and affordable. It is natural, hands-on health care without the use of drugs or surgery. Chiropractic is a healing discipline firmly grounded in science. Although its main focus is the relationship between the skeleton (particularly the spine) and the nervous system that runs through it, chiropractic is concerned with the care of the entire body. Chiropractors use various diagnostic methods, including x-rays, to discover the state of your health, paying particular attention to your spine and bone structure.
How does chiropractic care work?
Chiropractic helps to remove postural imbalances and structural misalignments that can accumulate in our bodies over time. Our spines and joints change and develop problems just like our teeth, eyes and heart. Left unchecked for a long time, these changes may lead to pain, stiffness or other more serious problems. The benefits of chiropractic go far beyond relieving back and neck pain and can help people of all ages from infants to the elderly. Chiropractic is proven effective in the treatment of many common ailments including:
- Low Back Pain
- Mid and Upper Back Pain
- Neck Pain
- Shoulder and Arm Pain
- Leg Pain (Sciatica)
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Joint Stiffness
- Muscle Spasms
- Numbness and Tingling
- And many other common health issues
Physiotherapy?s unique contribution to health care stems from its advanced understanding of
how the body moves, what keeps it from moving well and how to restore mobility and enhance performance.
A physiotherapist assesses the patients? level of mobility, strength, endurance and other physical
abilities to determine the impact of their illness, injury, or dysfunction on their physical function, whether at work, rest or play. They diagnose the condition(s) and develop individual treatment plans to restore movement and reduce pain or limitations to mobility.
They treat the condition and help the patient understand its effect on their function and overall physical health state. A physiotherapist measures the patient?s progress regularly and adjusts the treatment accordingly, and advises the patient on how to manage their condition independently. Their goal is to help the patient prevent avoidable recurrences or complications through specified home stretches, exercises and physical modifications.
Physiotherapists can also advise you on ways to prevent potential health problems from occurring, before they arise.
Physiotherapists treat a wide range of the population, from the very young to the very old and for all physical conditions and ailments. They are trained in several different areas including orthopaedics, neurology, and cardiopulmonary. The main focus at Alevia Health and Wellness Centre is outpatient orthopaedics and we treat many of the following common conditions:
- Neck pain
- Low back pain
- Rotator Cuff injuries
- Elbow, wrist, knee, ankle, foot conditions
- Sprains and Strains
- Sports injuries
- Repetitive strain injuries (i.e.: carpal tunnel, tennis elbow)
- Motor vehicle accident injuries
- Industrial or work related injuries
- Post surgical rehabilitation (i.e.: hip or knee replacement)
Physiotherapists also work in areas that span all three practice areas such as women?s health
(including pre and post natal care, and other women?s health issues), pediatric and senior?s care.
They also help manage the physical complications that arise from many other conditions such as cancer and its treatment,
and care for physical symptoms associated with arthritic conditions, post surgical edema, post fracture conditioning, etc.
Physiotherapy ? How it Works
Physiotherapy involves using a variety of techniques and modalities to help your muscles, joints, heart and lungs work to their potential.
Physiotherapists work in partnership with patients of all ages to break down barriers
impeding physical function and performance. They work with other health care professionals to enhance your recovery and help you retain your optimal health for longer periods.
Physiotherapy can help individuals living with congenital or chronic diseases or other debilitating conditions
and can assist those recovering from: surgery; illness; neurological conditions
such as stroke; injury; industrial or motor vehicle accidents; or age related conditions.
The practice of physiotherapy is drug free and utilizes many other supportive therapies
such as ultrasound, therapeutic laser, interferential current, TENS, cryotherapy, acupuncture, therapeutic stretches and physical rehabilitation,
to meet your healthcare needs.
Fundamental to a physiotherapists approach is an appreciation of your role in your own care.
Physiotherapists work with you to integrate your care into your lifestyle.
They are skilled in providing treatment, preventative advice, rehabilitation and care for people with long term or terminal illness and will develop a full, individualized treatment plan to suit your unique needs.
Physiotherapists are university educated, regulated health professionals that play an important role within your health care team.
Physiotherapy ? What to Expect?
When you see a physiotherapist, he or she will complete a thorough assessment that may include your health history, evaluation of pain and movement patterns, strength, joint range of motion,
reflexes, sensation and current cardio-respiratory status.
They will also examine relevant x-rays, laboratory tests, medical records and surgical notes. Based on this assessment, the physiotherapist develops a diagnosis and works in partnership
with you and any other health professionals, to plan individualized goals and treatment programs.
Physiotherapists promote independence, including emphasis on how you can help yourself. For example, you may be shown exercises that you can do between treatment sessions and how to set goals to achieve optimal results.
Physiotherapy - What Can The Treatment Involve?
Some treatment options:
- Strengthening and therapeutic exercise programs
- Mobility and flexibility improvement
- Improvements in muscle imbalances and alignment
- Balance retraining and movement coordination
- Manual therapy ? intervention to reduce pain and stiffness
- Electrical modalities such as TENS (electrical nerve stimulation) or ultrasound
- Gait retraining and general conditioning regimes
Acupuncture What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a system of healing which has been practiced in China and other Eastern countries for thousands of years. Although often described as a means of pain relief, it is in fact used to treat people with a wide range of illnesses. According to traditional Chinese philosophy, our health is dependent on the body's motivating energy - known as Qi (pronounced 'chi') - moving in a smooth and balanced way through a series of meridians (channels) beneath the skin. Qi consists of equal and opposite qualities - Yin and Yang - and when these become unbalanced, illness may result. By inserting fine needles into the channels of energy, an acupuncturist can stimulate the body's own healing response and help restore its natural balance. The flow of Qi can be disturbed by a number of factors. These include emotional states such as anxiety, stress, anger, fear or grief, poor nutrition, weather conditions, hereditary factors, infections, poisons and trauma. The principal aim of acupuncture in treating the whole person is to recover the equilibrium within the body.
What conditions does acupuncture treat?
Acupuncture is used to treat a wide variety of health conditions. Here is just a partial list of conditions for which acupuncture has been found to be effective: fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, headaches and migraines, lower back pain and sciatica, frozen shoulder, arthritis, PMS, knee pain, plantar fasciitis.
How Does It Work?
Acupuncture needles are inserted into specific points along these meridians, restores the proper Qi flow, thereby returning the body to a state of improved health and decreased pain.
According to Oriental Medicine, acupuncture works by stimulating the flow of Qi (pronounced 'chee'), or natural healing energy, throughout one's body. In a healthy person, Qi flows fully and freely. When there is blockage or disruption of this flow, many types of illness or pain result.
Once the needles are in, no pain is felt. A treatment usually lasts 15 ? 20 minutes. For your protection, all needles are sterile, one-time-use, and disposable.
What Are The Benefits Of Acupuncture?
- Pain relief for acute and chronic conditions
- Decreases stress and anxiety
- Accelerates the healing process
- Aids in smoking cessation
- Relieves acute and chronic sinus congestion
- Complements other treatments for internal disorders
Does It Hurt?
Acupuncture rarely causes any discomfort, and different people have different sensitivity levels. Some people don't feel the needle being inserted at all; those who are more sensitive to needles have described the sensation as feeling like a small mosquito bites, and only for a fraction of a second. Most people find the experience of receiving acupuncture relaxing; often people nap while the needles are in place.
Is It Safe?
We use pre-sterilized, pre-packaged, one time use needles only. Furthermore, acupuncture treatments are natural and drug-free, so there is none of the side-effects and dependencies often associated with medication.
Deep tissue massage by a registered massage therapist offers many medical benefits and is one of the best methods to relieve stress, headaches and pain. Through manipulation of the muscles and pressure to the body, massage therapy increases circulation, sending oxygen throughout the body.
The physiological results of massage are astounding, including a reduction in pain, faster muscle recovery during sports and fitness activities, and a more balanced, relaxed body. When we get hurt without knowing how or why it happens or we just don?t feel like ourselves anymore, massage is a
therapeutic way to begin to restore ourselves. The headaches, soreness flaring up from old injuries or a recent incident which may cause us to change the way we function and to lose quality of life, are easily treatable with massage!
Massage Therapy - STRESS
Massage is one of the best remedies for stress. Endorphins are released by our bodies during a massage. These natural anti-stress hormones quiet edginess and make it easier to sleep at night. Massage has a direct effect on reducing muscle tension and headaches. Reducing stress gives you more energy, improves your overall well being, and can prevent injuries and illness in the process.
Massage Therapy - INJURIES
Massage can accelerate healing. Injuries such as tendonitis, ligament sprains, muscle strains and other musculoskeletal complaints in the body recover more quickly. Massage helps reduce inflammation by increasing circulation, which removes waste products and toxins and brings nutritive fluids to injured cells. Certain massage techniques can limit scar formation in new injuries and can soften scar tissue around old injuries.
Massage Therapy - PREVENTION
By reducing chronic muscle tension, massage can help prevent injuries that might be caused by over stressed or unbalanced, inflexible muscle groups. Planning ahead can maintain your body?s health.
Registered Massage Therapy has helped treat conditions such as:
- Sports Injuries
- Back Pain
- Stress Management
- Repetitive Injuries
- Work Place Injuries
- Decreased Circulation/Edema
- Acute and Chronic Injuries
- Motor Vehicle Accident Injury
How Will a Massage Feel?
Massage therapy on healthy tissues generally feels good and allows the body to relax in response to this type of physical treatment. A massage therapist uses firm but gentle pressure to manipulate tissues and works at different tissue depths based on your needs and tolerance.
Working in the area of an injury or chronic pain/dysfunction may cause discomfort at first, but this usually lessens after the initial treatment. The most effective and deepest massage works with the body?s natural responses and the therapist will carefully work within what feels right to you.
Reflexology What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is a focused pressure technique, usually directed at the feet or hands. It is based on the premise that there are zones and reflexes on different parts of the body which corresponds to and are relative to all parts, glands and organs of the entire body.
How Does It Work?
When the reflexes are stimulated, the body's natural electrical energy works along the nervous system to clear any blockages in the corresponding zones. A reflexology session seems to break up deposits (felt as a sandy or gritty area under the skin) which may interfere with this natural flow of the body's energy.
Manipulating specific reflexes removes stress, activating a parasympathetic response in the body to enable the disharmonies to be released by a physiological change in the body. With stress removed and circulation improved, the body is allowed to return to a state of homeostasis.
Homeostasis is the "automatic" process that the body incorporates to bring it back to the "normal" state
What Are The Benefits?
- Reduces effect of Stress and Tension by creating a feeling of well being.
- Improves flow of nerve impulses and blood circulation to enhance healing.
- Stabilizes under-active or over-active organ function and nurtures the body to homeostasis.
- Complements all other healing modalities and therapy.
Length of Treatments
A complete session on both feet is always performed. Depending upon the reflexologist's level of experience and the client's requirements, sessions will last between 30 to 60 minutes.
Reflexes are worked according to the body?s requirements. Stress removal is the first priority; followed by enhanced circulation with attention paid to reflexes relative to the body requirements. Pressure exerted by the reflexologist usually ranges from 0 to 10 or 20 pounds. Common sense dictates when less pressure is required.
Who Can Benefit From Reflexology?
There is no discrimination in this therapy as it is non-invasive in its application and thereby complements all other treatments and therapies. People of both sexes and all age groups, from seniors to babies, can benefit positive results from reflexology. Reflexology can be applied as a preventive therapy and also as a complementary therapy in case of existing medical conditions being treated by another form of medicine.
Common Conditions Treated with Reflexology
Reflexology has provided effective results to patients with the following conditions:
- Low Back Pain
- Sleep Disorders
- Menstrual Problems
- Edema (fluid retention)
- Blood Pressure Conditions
- Neurological Conditions
The body's cells use this light energy to assist in the natural healing process. This process is also known as laser therapy or phototherapy. It is painless and has been in use for over 20 years with no known side effects.
Low intensity laser therapy (LILT) has proven to be highly effective in treating both acute injuries and chronic pain of various kinds. It is especially effective in treating, musculoskeletal injuries, degenerative diseases, arthritis, joint replacement rehabilitation, back and neck pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, ankle injuries, plantar fasciitis, jaw pain, whiplash and certain dermatological conditions.
Is It Safe?
Low level laser therapy is painless and has been in use for over 20 years with no known side effects.
Mechanism of Action
Low Intensity Laser Therapy (LILT) helps restore normal cellular function while enhancing the body's natural healing processes by delivering light energy (photons) to the cells. The tissues and cells then absorb this energy, where it is used to accelerate the normal rate of tissue healing thus speeding up the recovery process.
Therapeutic Benefits of Laser Therapy
- Pain relief by production and release of beta-endorphins. These are morphine like substances naturally produced by cells that decrease the sensation of pain. Most chronic pain patients report that they sleep better after their first treatment as a result of this effect.
- Anti-inflammatory Action: Laser light reduces swelling, leading to decreased pain, less stiffness, and a faster return to normal joint and muscle function.
- Rapid Cell Growth: Laser light accelerates cellular reproduction and growth.
- Faster Wound Healing: Laser light stimulates fibroblast development and accelerates collagen synthesis in damaged tissue.
- Reduced Fibrous Tissue Formation: Laser light reduces formation of scar tissue, leading to more complete healing, with less chance of weakness and re-injury later.
- Increased Vascular Activity: Laser light increases blood flow to the injured area.
- Stimulated Nerve Function: Laser light speeds nerve cell processes which may decrease pain and numbness associated with nerve-related conditions.
Frequency of Treatments
While some patients get immediate results, others require 6-12 treatments before seeing a lasting effect. Less severe or acute injuries will require fewer treatments than chronic or severe conditions.
Osteopaths diagnose the cause of pain and can often do a great deal to help reduce the level of your pain and suffering.
The osteopath will look at how your whole body functions and so be able to reduce strain on the painful area caused by mechanical problems elsewhere.
How does osteopath work?
Osteopaths help to reduce tissue inflammation by a number of methods ranging from massage of muscles and connective tissue to gentle, manipulation and stretching of joints.
This helps to reduce muscle spasm and increase mobility, helping to create a healthier state in which damaged tissues can heal.
What can osteopathy treat?
- Low Back Pain
- Neck Pain
- Joint and Arthritic Pain
- Rheumatic Pain
- Menstrual Period Pain
- Sports Injury
- Joint Stiffness
- Leg and Arm Pain
Homeopathy How does Homeopathy work?
Homeopathic remedies work by stimulating the body's own healing power. This stimulus will assist your own system to clear itself of any symptoms of imbalance. The aim is to get you to a level of health so that eventually you will need less frequent treatment.
Basically, your homeopath will give you a homeopathic medicine or remedy which matches your symptoms as you experience them.
What can osteopathy treat?
Your homeopath will give you a homeopathic remedy, usually in the form of a tablet or tablets, occasionally as powders, which should be allowed to dissolve in your mouth; or you may be give a liquid remedy with instructions.
What will happen once treatment starts?
Some patients experience a period of exceptional well being and optimism. Sometimes your symptoms can appear to get worse for a short time. This is a good sign that the remedy is taking effect.
These symptoms will pass and must not be treated, as they are a very important part of the healing process. If any response to your treatment concerns you, do contact your homeopath as soon as you can, as it is important to know what happens as treatment progresses.
How long does treatment take?
This depends very much on what sort of illness you have, as well as the other individual characteristics of your case.
A slowly developing complaint or one that has been experienced for some years, may take longer to improve. Acute complaints can get better more quickly, sometimes in a matter of hours.
Naturopathy What is Naturopathy?
Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary health care system that blends modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural forms of medicine. The naturopathic philosophy is to stimulate the healing power of the body and treat the underlying cause of disease. Symptoms of disease are seen as warning signals of improper functioning of the body, and unfavourable lifestyle habits. Naturopathic Medicine emphasizes disease as a process rather than as an entity.
Treating both acute and chronic conditions, naturopathic treatments are chosen based on the individual patient - their physiological, structural, psychological, social, spiritual, environment and lifestyle factors. In addition to diet and lifestyle changes, natural therapies including botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, naturopathic manipulation and traditional Chinese medicine/acupuncture, may also be used during treatments.
What it can do for you?
Naturopathic medicine treats all forms of health concerns -- from pediatric to geriatric, from irritating systems to chronic illness and from the physical to the psychological. It is the approach, philosophy and training of naturopathic doctors that sets it apart from other forms of health care.
Naturopathic physicians treat each patient by taking into account individual physical, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social and other factors.
The naturopathic philosophy is to stimulate the healing power of the body and to treat the root cause of disease. For many patients, this difference in approach to health provides them with a new perspective and awareness. By addressing the root cause(s) of disease and through the appropriate use of natural therapies many patients with chronic illness have found tremendous benefits.
Some of the natural therapies used by naturopathic physicians include:
- Clinical nutrition
- Botanical medicine
- Physical medicine or Osteopathy
- Traditional Chinese medicine or Acupuncture
- Prevention and Lifestyle Management
- Chelation therapy