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Back Clinic Therapeutic Massage Team. We all want to relax. In our hectic lives, it’s hard to find time for R&R. If you deal with this in your life, a massage is in order. Massage therapy is a general term that refers to various types of soft tissue manipulation for therapeutic purposes. It involves manually working on the body with gentle pressure or through the use of mechanical aids. Depending on the way the massage is applied, it can be used to provide relaxation and well-being.

Healthcare providers recognize massage therapy as a legitimate therapy for lower back pain. It utilizes manual manipulation to improve circulation, relax muscles, improve range of motion, and increase endorphin levels. This therapy usually follows some medical treatment. Types of therapy include neuromuscular, sports, and Swedish.

For example, Neuromuscular therapy, which is the most effective treatment for low back pain, consists of alternating levels of pressure applied to muscles to alleviate the muscle spasms. First of all, make sure to drink plenty of water following a massage. With massaging procedures, the tissues of your body will be stimulated, resulting in the release of toxins.

Drinking at least 10 glasses of water throughout the day will flush out the toxins. Aim to drink 2-3 glasses within the first hour or so and then at least 8 more within the next 24 hours. In the hour following the massage, drink several glasses and then continue with eight more in the next 23 hours.

After Traveling Relieve Musculoskeletal Pain With Chiropractic Massage

After Traveling Relieve Musculoskeletal Pain With Chiropractic Massage

After traveling, body/musculoskeletal aches and pains can present from continual standing in line, sitting, staying in the same position, carrying a heavy bag or pulling a suitcase, and sleeping in an unfamiliar bed with different pillows, on a plane or car can cause body imbalances, jerking the spine out of alignment, straining the neck, shoulders, and back causing headaches, soreness, stiffness, back pain, and compression. Chiropractic massage and decompression will relieve travel pains, loosen stiff and sore joints, soothe aching muscles, realign the spine, and restore body health and comfort.

After Traveling Relieve Musculoskeletal Stress With Chiropractic Massage

Musculoskeletal Health

The musculoskeletal system is comprised of:

  • Muscles
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Bones
  • Joints
  • Tissues that move the body and help maintain structure and form.

The health of the musculoskeletal system is defined as the absence of injury, disease, or illness within the system. Keeping this system healthy is crucial for the health of the other body systems.

Common Muskuloskeletal Conditions

  • Musculoskeletal injuries – work-related, personal, automobile, sports, or physical activity
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain
  • Hip pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Crystal arthritis
  • Inflammatory arthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Fractures

Chiropractic Massage Therapy After Traveling

Musculoskeletal health is enhanced by increased circulation that increases oxygen flow that relaxes the mind and body. Overworked sore, tired muscles after traveling can keep the body tense which could lead to chronic stress symptoms. Chiropractic massage therapy effectively reduces stress and anxiety by manipulating the body tissues like the muscles, tendons, connective tissues, and ligaments, increasing blood circulation and improving flexibility.


  • The body is weak after traveling into different time zones, which can cause jet lag, stress, and relaxation problems.
  • Jet lag can cause sleep problems, leading to extreme fatigue, headaches, and nausea.
  • Chiropractic can alleviate jet lag effects quickly by working/massaging/stretching out the muscles, increasing blood flow, flushing out toxins, and calming the body.

Travel Stress

  • The stress starts right before the trip when preparing, packing, and setting up the house while away.
  • The body tenses up when traveling to maintain focus, stay alert, and be ready for surprises.
  • When on vacation, having fun and doing all kinds of activities can make individuals forget to relax.
  • Waking up early and going to bed late can contribute to travel stress.
  • Chiropractic therapy will relieve all the strain and return the body to a relaxed state.

Relieve Back Pressure

  • Sitting for hours can increase pressure on the spine.
  • The muscles become stiff from the immobility accumulating pressure on the body and the mind, increasing the risk for other pains.
  • Chiropractic therapy will help lower heart rate and blood pressure relieving discomfort and stiffness.

Relax and Sleep

  • The internal body clock can get thrown off when traveling, resulting in little to no sleep and irritability.
  • Driving or flying will drain the body and mind, which can cause fatigue and anxiety.
  • Chiropractic will restore body and mind functions resulting in sleep and relaxation.

Spinal Decompression Texas


Crofford, Leslie J. “Chronic Pain: Where the Body Meets the Brain.” Transactions of the American Clinical and Climatological Association vol. 126 (2015): 167-83.

Nichols B, Nova P, Jacobs, K. Ergonomic Strategies for Using a Suitcase. The American Occupational Therapy Association. August 2018. Accessed May 2019.

Sadler, Sean G et al. “Restriction in lateral bending range of motion, lumbar lordosis, and hamstring flexibility predicts the development of low back pain: a systematic review of prospective cohort studies.” BMC musculoskeletal disorders vol. 18,1 179. 5 May. 2017, doi:10.1186/s12891-017-1534-0

Waterhouse, J et al. “The stress of travel.” Journal of sports sciences vol. 22,10 (2004): 946-65; discussion 965-6. doi:10.1080/02640410400000264

Pregnant and Chiropractic

Pregnant and Chiropractic

Pregnant and Chiropractic: Many women experience back/pelvis/leg/feet swelling, soreness, achiness, and pain during pregnancy. A growing belly added weight and changes in connective tissue can cause a variety of musculoskeletal strains and misalignments. Chiropractic care provides health maintenance of the spinal column, discs, nerves, joints, muscles, and bones. It is an art and science of adjusting a misaligned body, reducing stress, and promoting health throughout the body.

Pregnant and Chiropractic

Pregnant and Chiropractic

With a primary doctor’s clearance, chiropractic can provide safe adjustments. Chiropractors trained to work with pregnant women utilize techniques that avoid applying pressure on or around the abdomen. Benefits of chiropractic during pregnancy include:

  • Restores and maintains spinal alignment and balance.
  • Helps control symptoms of nausea.
  • Improves energy levels.
  • Relieves body pain.
  • Helps reduce labor time and delivery.
  • Restores pelvic positioning and balance, improving standing, sitting, and walking mechanics.
  • Improves blood perfusion and better movement for the baby

A chiropractor trained in the needs of pregnant women will also provide exercises and stretches that are safe during pregnancy. A chiropractor will discuss/recommend treatment options, patient concerns, and a complete medical history assessment. They will monitor symptoms to customize treatments to the individual’s specific needs to get the most relief.

Body Composition

Gestational Hypertension

Gestational hypertension develops during pregnancy. It is not preventable and returns to normal levels postpartum. However, there is an increased risk of developing chronic hypertension later if gestational hypertension begins to develop. According to Mayo Clinic, gestational hypertension is diagnosed by the following:

  • At least 20 weeks gestation.
  • Blood pressure is higher than 140/90 on at least two occasions.
  • Must be more than four hours apart.
  • There is no other organ damage present.

Gutke, Annelie et al. “Treatments for pregnancy-related lumbopelvic pain: a systematic review of physiotherapy modalities.” Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica vol. 94,11 (2015): 1156-67. doi:10.1111/aogs.12681

Poděbradská, R et al. “The effect of physiotherapy intervention on the load of the foot and low back pain in pregnancy.” “Vliv fyzioterapeutických postupů na zatížení plosky a bolesti zad v těhotenství.” Ceska gynekologie vol. 84,6 (2019): 450-457.

Schreiner, Lucas et al. “Systematic review of pelvic floor interventions during pregnancy.” International journal of gynecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics vol. 143,1 (2018): 10-18. doi:10.1002/ijgo.12513

Orthopedic Massage

Orthopedic Massage

Orthopedic massage is part of injury rehabilitation that focuses on the muscles and soft tissues surrounding the joints and ligaments. Pain could be caused post-surgery, an acute injury, or overuse/repetitive motion injury from work or sports. The objective is to:

  • Decrease pain
  • Release tension
  • Restore balance
  • Increase mobility and flexibility
  • Preparing the body to return to everyday routines and activities.

Whatever the cause of the muscle damage or injury, an orthopedic massage will lengthen and soften the muscles and ligaments, allowing for a better range of motion of the affected joints.

Orthopedic Massage

Orthopedic Massage

All massage techniques can improve joint movement and function. Orthopedic massage is specifically designed to return the joints to their normal position function and alleviate pain with movement.

  • Swedish massage focuses on overall relaxation.
  • Deep tissue massage reduces deep muscle pain and strain.

Orthopedic massage therapists have an extensive understanding of anatomy, soft tissues, and misalignment of the musculoskeletal system that can cause pain and injury. It is similar to sports massage targeting damaged areas for recovery and rehabilitation from conditions and injuries. Sports massage helps the individual strengthen and retrain the damaged areas back to optimal performance and prevent injury. Orthopedic massage utilizes:

  • Alignment techniques
  • Release techniques
  • Pin techniques
  • Stretch techniques
  • To expedite thorough body healing.

Massage benefits many symptoms and conditions. It has been shown to help with:

  • Sprains
  • Pulled muscles
  • Torn ligaments
  • Carpal-tunnel syndrome
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Tennis elbow
  • Tendinitis
  • Sciatica
  • Bulging discs
  • Post-surgery


A therapist will look at the range of motion, flexibility, and rotation of the tissues. This will help determine what muscle groups and tendons are involved and which techniques to use. Massage therapists use an assortment of approaches to loosen muscles and tendons. These include:

Active Engagement

  • This is used to reach deep, hard-to-reach muscles by applying pressure and massaging lengthwise in a perpendicular motion.
  • It is beneficial for whiplash and/or back pain.

Positional Release

  • This is a gentle treatment for inflamed muscles and tissues highly sensitive to other techniques.
  • Soft tissues are manipulated into comfortable positions and held in place for a specific time.
  • This lengthens and softens tissues to bring pain relief.

Nerve Mobilization

Muscle Energy Release

  • The therapist provides resistance while the individual voluntarily contracts muscles.
  • Effective with low back pain.

Trigger Point Therapy

  • Pressure intervals are held on trigger areas to release lactic acid and promote circulation.

Myofascial Release

  • Gentle pressure is applied to stretch fascia tissues.

Body Composition

Brittle Bones

The reason bones become weaker is that bone tissue is living tissue that constantly forms new bone material and absorbs the old bone material. As the body ages, the rate at which bone is reabsorbed becomes faster than newly formed bone material. One reason for rapid bone loss is lack of exercise and physical activity. The Mayo Clinic has stated that individuals that spend a great deal of time sitting, whether at home or work, have an increased risk of osteoporosis than more active individuals. Sitting too much with little to no activity can lead to weakened bones. Just like the muscles, bones get stronger when they are in use. Walking, running, jumping, and getting the body moving along with using some resistance, can increase the strength and durability of the bones.


Kim, Seung-Kook et al. “Clinical outcomes and cost-effectiveness of massage chair therapy versus basic physiotherapy in lower back pain patients: A randomized controlled trial.” Medicine vol. 99,12 (2020): e19514. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000019514

Klein, Ifat et al. “Lymphatic treatments after orthopedic surgery or injury: A systematic review.” Journal of bodywork and movement therapies vol. 24,4 (2020): 109-117. doi:10.1016/j.jbmt.2020.06.034

Loew, Laurianne M et al. “Deep, transverse friction massage for treating lateral elbow or lateral knee tendinitis.” The Cochrane database of systematic reviews vol. 2014,11 CD003528. 8 Nov. 2014, doi:10.1002/14651858.CD003528.pub2

Majewski-Schrage, Tricia, and Kelli Snyder. “The Effectiveness of Manual Lymphatic Drainage in Patients With Orthopedic Injuries.” Journal of sport rehabilitation vol. 25,1 (2016): 91-7. doi:10.1123/jsr.2014-0222

Neuromuscular Massage For Muscular Pain

Neuromuscular Massage For Muscular Pain

A neuromuscular massage is a form of manual massage used to release strained muscles. Strained areas are also known as trigger points that tend to be the cause of muscular pain symptoms. Trigger points are small areas of the muscle that contract the tissue. The lack of blood and nutrients in these areas causes an inability for the muscles to relax. The area becomes hypersensitive, causing fatigue, weakness, inflammation, and pain. Trigger points can lead to referred pain in which other areas of the body experience sensations of pain, tingling or numbness.

Neuromuscular Massage For Muscular Pain

Neuromuscular Massage

Neuromuscular massage treatment involves applying alternating levels of concentrated pressure on the trigger point/s done through manual and instrument manipulation. Neuromuscular therapy is also called trigger point myotherapy. The American Academy of Pain Management recognizes this form of treatment as an effective treatment for pain caused by soft tissue injury.

Deep Tissue Massage

A deep tissue massage is generally used to address muscle aches and pains and is administered on an on-off basis. Neuromuscular manual therapy techniques are specialized and designed to correct pain and movement dysfunction by treating:

Problems are usually caused by:

  • Specific trauma
  • Repetitive movements
  • Unhealthy posture

Neuromuscular massage is considered an ongoing treatment.

Massage Reduces Pain

Muscles, when spasming, are painful to the touch. The pain is caused by ischemic muscle tissue. Ischemia means the muscle is lacking proper blood flow because of the spasm. This causes adverse effects because the muscles are not receiving enough blood; the muscles also do not receive enough oxygen.

  • The lack of oxygen causes the muscles to produce lactic acid.
  • The lactic acid causes the muscles to feel sore following physical activity.

Neuromuscular massage therapy relaxes the muscles releasing the lactic acid, allowing the muscles to receive enough blood and oxygen. Neuromuscular therapy can feel painful at first, but the pressure of the massage will alleviate the muscle spasm/s. It is crucial to communicate with the chiropractor and massage therapist about the pressure – whether it is too much, too little, feels better, feels worse, etc. Massage therapy pressure should never be overly painful. Individuals often describe the pressure as good pain, where they can feel the difference. Following a neuromuscular massage, the soreness should fade after twenty-four to thirty-six hours. The tight muscles should remain relaxed for four to fourteen days, depending on activities and stress levels.

Massage Treatment

Medical issues and conditions for which neuromuscular massage can treat include:

  • Tendonitis
  • Headaches
  • Temporomandibular joint pain – TMJ disorders
  • Jaw pain
  • Carpal tunnel
  • Upper back pain
  • Low back pain
  • Sciatica
  • Hip pain
  • Knee pain
  • Iliotibial band syndrome
  • Calf cramps
  • Plantar fasciitis

Neuromuscular Massage Benefits

Individuals who undergo neuromuscular massage therapy can experience the following benefits:

  • Reduced and/or complete elimination of pain.
  • Increased blood circulation.
  • Body toxin release.
  • Increased flexibility and strength.
  • Better movement.
  • Improved posture.
  • Balanced musculoskeletal and nervous systems.
  • Increased energy and vitality.

Body Composition


When it comes to getting fit, remember it is a long-distance marathon, not a quick sprint. Whether physical, mental, or a combination, fatigue is a common obstacle for successfully reaching health goals. Physical fitness requires energy:

  • Energy for work or school.
  • Energy to set up the gear or get to the gym.
  • Energy for the workout.
  • Energy to prepare regular healthy meals.

Combined with the pressures of everyday life can make it a challenge to work out consistently. The objective is to make gradual changes rather than significant immediate changes. This will help prevent/avoid early burnout and help lead to maintaining healthy habits. One tip could be scheduling the workouts and meal prep time for the day or week when most active. For example, knowing that after work or school, the body can’t take a workout and needs to crash at the end of the day, set up the exercise for the morning or afternoon. And once the workouts become a routine, energy levels will improve, allowing for more activity.


Bervoets, Diederik C et al. “Massage therapy has short-term benefits for people with common musculoskeletal disorders compared to no treatment: a systematic review.” Journal of physiotherapy vol. 61,3 (2015): 106-16. doi:10.1016/j.jphys.2015.05.018

Field, Tiffany. “Massage therapy research review.” Complementary therapies in clinical practice vol. 24 (2016): 19-31. doi:10.1016/j.ctcp.2016.04.005

Furlan, Andrea D et al. “Massage for low-back pain.” The Cochrane database of systematic reviews,9 CD001929. 1 Sep. 2015, doi:10.1002/14651858.CD001929.pub3

Qaseem, Amir et al. “Noninvasive Treatments for Acute, Subacute, and Chronic Low Back Pain: A Clinical Practice Guideline From the American College of Physicians.” Annals of internal medicine vol. 166,7 (2017): 514-530. doi:10.7326/M16-2367

Therapeutic Massage During Pregnancy

Therapeutic Massage During Pregnancy

Pregnancy can take a toll on a woman’s body. New aches and pains start to present as the pregnancy progresses. Hormonal changes can affect the state of mind, making trying to relax or relieve stress extremely difficult to impossible, causing more frustration and tensed muscles. It’s absolutely safe and beneficial to get a professional therapeutic massage while pregnant. Most pregnant women are cleared to get massages after their first trimester. However, if it is a high-risk pregnancy, talk to your doctor before scheduling a massage.

Therapeutic Massage During Pregnancy

Benefits of Therapeutic Massage

A therapeutic massage while pregnant, known as prenatal massage, generates a peaceful and serene mindset. Studies show prenatal massage is beneficial for the mother and baby. Pregnant women that are unable to find discomfort/pain relief benefit from prenatal massage. Benefits include:

  • Swelling is reduced
  • Improved hormone regulation helps reduce instances of low birth weight
  • Joint, back, and nerve pain/sciatica is reduced, and function improved
  • Headaches lessen in severity and frequency
  • Blood and nerve circulation improves
  • Sleep cycles improve
  • Anxiety, depression, and stress improves

Types of Massage

Safe massages when pregnant. The most common prenatal massage is a Swedish Massage. This type of massage is gentle but forceful enough to provide the aforementioned benefits. Swedish Massage focuses on the topmost layer of muscle with long strokes that incorporate movement of the joints. Avoid deep-tissue massage when pregnant, as this is a more aggressive style of massage.

Back Massage

During pregnancy, posture changes from the added weight. The center of gravity shifts making the spine and back muscles work harder. This regularly makes the muscles achy, sore, and stiff. Prenatal back massage is done while sitting or lying on the side. Long strokes are performed on the muscles, along with gentle kneading. The focus is on the muscles along the spine and the low back. This type of massage is highly beneficial if sciatica is presenting.

Neck Massage

Massaging the neck loosens tight muscles, improves awkward neck posture, alleviates nerve pain preventing tension headaches, and promotes flexibility. Most therapists will start with the neck and arms while the individual sits up, then lie down to work on the rest of the body.

Chiropractic Massage

This type of massage is performed by a licensed chiropractor and/or a physical massage therapist at the direction of a chiropractor. Chiropractic massage therapists have undergone thorough training and always take care to avoid any pressure points or areas that could cause discomfort.

Areas that Are Avoided During Massage

Professional massage therapists know what areas to avoid during the therapeutic massage, but it’s also important for the patient. The areas that will be avoided include:

  • The pressure points in the wrist and around the ankles. These areas have points that could cause uterine contractions and cervical ripening.
  • Around the belly. However, it is recommended to perform gentle, low-pressure massaging at home.
  • Around open wounds, rashes, or skin conditions.

Safety Tips

Other precautions to take when receiving a massage during pregnancy. The massage therapist should look out for blood clot symptoms or varicose veins. Other precautions to follow:

  • Make sure the massage therapist knows you are pregnant before beginning.
  • If the massage triggers nausea, discomfort, or is not enjoyable, ask to stop.
  • Avoid massage tables that have a hole cut out for the belly.
  • The recommended method is on the side, supported with proper padding to ensure stability and comfort.
  • The massage should be no more than an hour.
  • A massage in the first trimester is not recommended.
  • Make sure the massage oil is safe.
  • Avoid peppermint, rosemary, sage, and thyme oil.
  • Massage is not recommended if it is a high-risk pregnancy or:
  • Preeclampsia
  • High blood pressure
  • Severe swelling
  • Severe headaches
  • Have had a previous preterm birth
  • Pregnancy-induced hypertension/PIH

Massage at Home

A trained massage therapist should perform a prenatal therapeutic massage. However, a partner can perform an easy, safe massage at home following a few guidelines.

  • Avoid the ankles and the areas around the wrists.
  • Avoid the belly and the area around it.
  • Back, neck, scalp, and foot rubs are recommended.
  • Utilize long gentle strokes with all-natural and safe massage oils or lotions.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of blood clots. Pregnant women are more susceptible. These include:
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Heat
  • Discoloration of the affected area.
  • Talk to your physician if you have an increased risk for blood clots.

Get a Massage

A prenatal therapeutic massage can improve hormone regulation, help sleep, reduce stress and anxiety, and promote a healthy and optimal delivery.

Body Composition

Diastasis Recti Post-Baby Weight

Pregnancy can cause abdominal muscle separation or diastasis recti.

This happens when the outermost abdominal muscles/rectus abdominis, which are the muscles from the breastbone to the pubic bone pull apart from the fibrous attachment point/linea alba. Muscle separation is common after pregnancy, but the degree and location of the separation are what vary from one woman to another. As the pregnancy progresses, the uterus makes room for the growing baby. This can cause the abdominal – recti muscles to stretch and become flabby. This muscle separation is not linked with complications for the mother or the baby and it is not a sign of muscle loss.


Hall, Helen et al. “The effectiveness of complementary manual therapies for pregnancy-related back and pelvic pain: A systematic review with meta-analysis.” Medicine vol. 95,38 (2016): e4723. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000004723

“Perineal Massage in Pregnancy.” Journal of midwifery & women’s health vol. 61,1 (2016): 143-4. doi:10.1111/jmwh.12427

Schreiner, Lucas et al. “Systematic review of pelvic floor interventions during pregnancy.” International journal of gynecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics vol. 143,1 (2018): 10-18. doi:10.1002/ijgo.12513

Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Scar tissue if left untreated/unmanaged could lead to mobility and chronic pain issues. Individuals that are recovering from a traumatic injury often have issues brought on from scar tissue. Scar tissue build-up is part of the healing process but in some cases, the tissue build-up can create another set of health issues. Restricted mobility and range of motion and lack of flexibility can worsen over time.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Chiropractors are taught to consider the presence of scar tissue when performing adjustments. This is especially true for patients recovering from a traumatic injury. If left untreated it could affect:

  • Recovery progress
  • Treatment approaches
  • The capability of the individual to handle the treatment
  • The planning and execution for a chiropractic recovery strategy


Scar Tissue Breakdown

Scar tissue can be broken up, managed, and kept loose/relaxed through various chiropractic/physical therapy techniques, stretches, exercises, and diet adjustments. Breaking up scar tissue and keeping it relaxed is necessary to restore full movement and range of motion. A certain degree of scar tissue will remain to mark the wound, but the pliability and softness of these tissues can be treated. Chiropractors can implement several techniques to break down scar tissue.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Graston Technique

The Graston technique uses instrumentation for addressing scarring in soft-tissue areas like the legs, neck, and lower back. A chiropractor targets the thicker scar tissue areas gently breaking them down.


Instrument Adjustment

Using a pulsating instrument, chiropractors can target specific areas of scar tissue buildup. The instrument massages the areas to improve flexibility and reduce stress in the tissue.  


Assisted Manipulation

The assisted manipulation technique soothes the area before performing manual adjustments. A chiropractor could use light oil for heat, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation to loosen tension, or numbing gel/cream to soften any sensitivity.  

Trigger point therapy

This therapy focuses on heavily scarred tissue areas, where there is substantial buildup. A chiropractor breaks down the scar tissue while continually testing the motion.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Therapeutic massage

Therapeutic massage is necessary with widespread scar tissue. It improves blood flow and gently stimulates scar tissue to improve movement and alleviate pain. These techniques and how they are applied depending on the individual and the amount of tissue build-up. For example, certain techniques work better for different situations like:

  • The Graston technique could help after surgery
  • Trigger point therapy can help when muscle spasms, and knots present
  • Therapeutic massage could be best suited for soft tissue scarrings, like whiplash or muscle strains


Adjustment Attention

Recent injuries that produce scar tissue can usually be felt while a chiropractor palpates the area, while radiological imaging shows scar tissue from past injuries. A chiropractor will take note of these areas when developing a treatment plan. Severe scar tissue will need special focus, which could mean a longer recovery. This is because the body could take longer to adjust to the adjustments being made. A thorough consultation and investigation will be performed/examined before any adjustments begin.

Chiropractic Massage Rehabilitation




Shin, Thuzar M, and Jeremy S Bordeaux. The role of massage in scar management: a literature review. Dermatologic surgery: official publication for American Society for Dermatologic Surgery [et al.] vol. 38,3 (2012): 414-23. doi:10.1111/j.1524-4725.2011.02201.x

Massage Therapists and Spine Health

Massage Therapists and Spine Health

Massage therapists have come a long way in reducing pain and improving wellness. Back pain is one of the most common reasons people seek physical therapy, chiropractic care, and massage therapy. Back pain affects around three in four adults at some point in their lives. Research supports that massage is a bona fide back pain treatment option. This could be welcome news to those who prefer not to use medications or invasive approaches to managing back pain. The right massage therapists can make all the difference in achieving the benefits.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. Massage Therapists and Spine Health

Massage goals

The first thing is to figure out what the goals are from the massage itself.
  • Are there acute back or neck issues that need to be addressed?
  • Looking for non-invasive therapy for long-term management of a chronic spinal condition?
  • Is the massage for performance enhancement? Could be athletic or to help perform daily activities easier.
  • Is it just wanting to relax?
Figuring out what it is to be achieved from the massage is essential to finding the right therapist.

Massage clinic, spa, health club, home

A massage can be performed in health clubs, spas, medical clinics, and at home. The location does not predict the massage type or specialty of the massage therapists, but it can be an indicator. Example: For athletic performance, a gym, or Crossfit center massage therapist is a good place to start. If massage is part of a back and neck pain management plan, look into the massage therapists at a medical clinic or a therapeutic massage clinic.

Ask for recommendations and ask questions

When searching, get recommendations, and ask plenty of questions to get all the information needed. After a few prospects have been found then ask plenty of questions before making an appointment. This can help determine if this will be a long-term therapeutic relationship or a one-time visit. If looking to manage a serious spinal condition, the recommendation would be to find a therapist with more experience.  
Massage education programs that are only entry-level do not provide in-depth education and practice for the many specific and complex spinal conditions. The real experience comes from years of practice along with continued education. This is how massage therapists are able to expand their clinical analysis and treatment development expertise. Get a sense of the massage therapist�s education and practice experience. This will help significantly when choosing a therapist best equipped.

Questions to ask potential therapists:

  • How long have you been practicing?
  • What�s your massage education?
  • Related education or practice experience? Many nurses or occupational therapists go on to become massage therapists. This means the information and knowledge from their nursing are now integrated into their massage practice.
  • How much-continued education have you gone through?
  • How many sessions do you offer?
  • What does the schedule look like? Think about scheduling when the therapist is more refreshed, like early in the workweek or their scheduled shift.
  • Do you have specialties with specific conditions or techniques?
  • Do you get massaged? If so, how often? Massage is a labor-intensive task. Therefore, it could be best to go to a therapist that keeps themselves healthy and balanced.
  • How long does it take for the initial appointment?
  • Do you have to book ahead?

If a therapist is booked don’t get frustrated

If a long-term therapeutic relationship for the management of a spinal condition is the goal, then it may be worth waiting for. A therapist that has a long wait time for initial appointments means they have patients that see them regularly and that�s a very good sign of quality care. One possible option for individuals waiting for their appointment is to go to a local massage school to get treated. This option is less expensive, great for body maintenance, and provides opportunities for the training therapists.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. Massage Therapists and Spine Health


A quality indicator is the professionalism of the therapist. This includes the extent to which they model the values of a health care professional valued by the patient. This is different for everyone. Questions to consider:
  • Are they on time?
  • Does the therapist cancel appointments?
  • Are you comfortable around them?
  • Do they listen?
  • Does the patient help in the development of a treatment plan?
  • Are they comfortable and engaged in the work?
  • Are they taking their massage career seriously?
Feeling at ease during the appointment/s is very important to massage success and relief. If anything about the therapist causes hesitation, look for another.

Massage Management

Massage is an excellent back pain treatment option that has gained popularity as a complement to pain management plans and as an alternative to invasive procedures. But, massage is not a cure-all. Often the cause of the back pain does not go away entirely. This is where massage therapy comes in as a pain management tool. It’s important to consider the condition�s duration and severity when evaluating the success of a session. This helps in planning the massage schedule. When there is a complex and established spinal condition be patient, as a 1-hour massage is not going to solve a 10-year back pain battle. However, with perseverance massage can safely and effectively help reduce pain and promote a better quality of life.

Chiropractic Massage Rehabilitation


Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
Self-Massage Techniques

Self-Massage Techniques

Dealing with chronic back pain along with the COVID-19 pandemic can make it difficult to find relief on a regular basis. When regular massage sessions are not available these self-massage techniques can relieve pain and loosen tense muscles. Massage therapy has been shown to reduce low back pain, specifically for short-term purposes. There are massage therapist/s that are open with precautions in place. But there�s a good chance the massage therapist will not be able to see an individual right away when the pain presents. Back pain will not wait so here are a few tips on self-massage that individuals can do at the house.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Self-Massage Techniques

Safety First

Consult your spine pain specialist, chiropractor, or doctor to determine the cause of the pain and if massage will be beneficial. Before starting a self-massage regimen, be sure pain levels are not severe and you are able to perform the massage techniques. Any muscle region, spine included, can benefit from massage both professionally and self. If at any time during the massaging different pain presents other than the massage soreness, stop and evaluate what could be happening. These self-massage tips are aimed at reasonably healthy individuals. Be mindful of herniated discs, any type of impingement, or spinal compression. If an individual has this type of injury acquire medical instruction on how to perform self-massage techniques specifically for these conditions from a physician, chiropractor, or physical therapist.  


Massage therapy helps in relieving back and neck pain in different ways.
  • Relaxes muscles
  • Improves range of motion
  • Reduces injury
  • Maximizes healing
  • Better sleep
If working from home and too much sitting has your back tight, in knots, with muscle tension, and stress, self-massage is an answer that works. It is a great alternative until the massage therapy appointment.

Applied Pressure

One way to give yourself a massage is to locate the painful area/s and gently apply pressure with the thumb/s, moving the muscle/s statically by just rotating the arm/hand together with the thumb pressing on the area. If possible get into a comfortable stretching position and massage the area while the muscle, joint, ligament is stretched out and find the painful area and work it if not with the thumb technique then use a foam roller, massage tool, tennis ball, massage ball, etc, also done in slow circular motions. When applying pressure, don�t push it to the limit like working out. That is not the goal. The objective is to work out the pain/soreness and loosen up the area. Therefore it�s best to start gently and gradually build up to stronger pressure as long as it feels correct and the pain does reduce. Gradually increase the intensity of the pressure, heat, sessions, etc. But do not overdo it, as that could worsen or cause further injury.


Although not directly massaging an area, stretching is a form of self-care that keeps the body loose and limber. Stretching out is recommended at the beginning of the day and before exercising. An example is runner�s lunge pose and a yoga pose called pigeon. These are excellent stretches for releasing the psoas muscle, located in the lower lumbar region.  
Yoga can help by stretching and releasing the hips, glutes, and back muscles. As with massage don�t overdo the moves, overstretch, or hold the poses for too long. Consult with a doctor for any medical concerns where yoga could be dangerous and impair health. Additionally, a family member, spouse, partner, or friend can be very helpful when stretching. Assisted stretches help and reduce the effort required to stretch oneself. Some assisted stretches include the supine twist and hamstring stretches. If you are the one assisting and want to guide the pain-relieving stretches, start gently, slowly, and pay attention to verbal and non-verbal cues, like a wincing face, and short breathing.

Utilize Massage Tools/Devices

Utilize self-massage tools and devices that can help deliver pain relief. Foam rollers and tennis balls can help with trigger points, areas of muscle pain and can help with the hard to reach areas. Massage balls can also help to apply balanced pressure and even circular massage motion. These tools are typically sandwiched between the wall or floor and the individual who rolls drags or creates friction to effectively work the muscle/s tightness, and knot/s out. Motorized massagers can help with muscle tension in the lower side of the back, hips, and glutes.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Self-Massage Techniques


Sometimes however there are areas difficult to reach and even if reachable massaging the area isn’t the same because of the awkward position. When this happens if possible use a spouse, family, friend, or partner to massage out those points. This could be the middle back and hamstrings to get a thorough massage. Just like a professional massage therapist having someone else can be a great help in applying heat or ice to areas that can be troublesome. But if not then make do with what you’re able. Self-massage can be very helpful and beneficial until you are able to see your massage therapist, chiropractor, or physical therapist.

Whiplash Massage Therapy


Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
Massage Therapeutics Can Improve Health and Well Being

Massage Therapeutics Can Improve Health and Well Being

Massage therapeutics is not about the candles, aromatherapy, and the spa. Although those items can be beneficial for relaxation etc, the massage part of the therapy is just that. An intense manual manipulation of the body’s tissues. Made to work out/relax tight, knotted, spasmed, and inflamed muscles, ligaments, and tendons back to a normal and relaxed function. This can be caused by injury, stress, awkward motion/s, etc. Research done by the American Massage Therapy Association shows that 50% of individuals asked for a therapeutic massage for musculoskeletal/stress issues. �


11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Massage Therapeutics Can Improve Health and Well Being

More physicians, specialists, and surgeons are recognizing the health benefits that massage therapeutics can bring and are sending their patients to certified/licensed massage therapists for treatment. There is now a high demand for massage therapists with the career possibilities being one of the strongest in the health care industry. Massage therapy is the manual manipulation of muscles and soft tissues including:

  • Connective tissues
  • Ligaments
  • Tendons

This is all done with the focus of improving an individual’s health and overall well-being. Licensed certified massage therapists are highly-trained and highly-versed in anatomy and physiology. Many often work with chiropractors preparing patients for the chiropractic adjustment/s by loosening up the muscles/tissues, then after with a light massage to ease the soreness of the adjustment and if necessary with continued visits with a mild to intense massage session to keep the areas loose and mobile.

Massage therapeutics effectively treats several medical conditions, sports injuries, automobile accident injuries, personal injuries, and helps prevent health problems connected with stress. Research shows that these medical conditions can be significantly improved or even healed with massage therapeutics. �


Top professional and weekend warrior athletes can benefit from massage therapeutics. Massage has been shown to help:

  • Reduce muscle tension
  • Improve exercise performance
  • Prevent injuries

Low Back Pain

The guidelines for treating chronic back pain. Now the suggested guidelines state that alternative treatments/therapies like massage, chiropractic, physical therapy, and acupuncture should be utilized before prescription medication, which is now the last resort, is implemented. �


Head and neck massage reduces chronic tension headaches, along with the stress that often comes with headaches. �

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Massage Therapeutics Can Improve Health and Well Being

Compromised Immune System Function

Myofascial massage has been shown to improve the nervous system, which is crucial to a healthy immune system. Through massage which increases blood circulation helps to increase the activity of T cells, which recognize and destroy cells that are infected with viruses. Stress reduction has been found to be a universally recognized benefit of massage therapeutics, and can also strengthen the immune system. �

Blood Pressure

Improved blood flow with massage therapeutics can also bring blood pressure down and elevates heart health. �

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Massage Therapeutics Can Improve Health and Well Being


Currently, there is no cure for fibromyalgia, but studies are showing a definite connection for those that receive myofascial massage therapeutics and improved quality of life. Reduced pain and anxiety, and quality sleep were has been experienced by individuals getting regular massage therapy. �

cancer chiropractic support el paso tx.

Cancer Pain

A common symptom for individuals battling cancer is pain, which can be mild to severe. Used in conjunction with other pain management techniques recommended by doctors, massage therapeutics have been shown to reduce pain along with anxiety symptoms.


Those with post-traumatic stress disorder can benefit from massage therapy. Massage can help reduce:

  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Pain associated with trauma/images/memories

Massage is often recommended as a companion for PTSD psychotherapy. Therapists are well established at many medical clinics and hospitals. With the opioid epidemic, the need for safe, natural, and effective pain therapy, then massage therapists can definitely help out. �

PTSD and Chirorpactic

Chiropractic Care Massage Therapy



Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

Neck Pain Prevention Tips El Paso, Texas

Neck Pain Prevention Tips El Paso, Texas

Neck pain prevention can go a long way as long as you take proper care of your body, exercise, and practice healthy habits. Here are a few tips to help prevent neck pain before it begins. Neck mobility is a marvelous thing. The neck can move the head in various directions:

  • 90� of flexion forward motion
  • 90� of extension backward motion
  • 180� of rotation side to side
  • Almost 120� of tilt to each shoulder


chiropractor works on woman's neck


A lot of us are very familiar with a stiff neck or a crick in the neck. This stiffness prevents us from moving comfortably. A crick in the neck can cause the neck part of the spine to feel stiff, rigid and immobile. Fortunately, prevention and various treatments can help.


  • Standing and sitting properly maintains proper posture and keeps muscles working/healthy. If you begin to hunch over, correct it immediately as it can quickly lead to pain in the neck. Pay attention to how you stand and sit and the more you do this it will become a healthy habit.
  • Do neck and body exercises regularly and try for a 30-minute cardio workout 3-5 times week.
  • Staying within a healthy weight-range will keep your spine in top form as it carries the weight of your body, and not overstrain it, which can lead to all kinds of pain.
  • With healthy weight comes a healthy meal plan, not just for proper weight but to strengthen muscles, bones, enriching the blood and getting to optimal health.
  • Smoking can affect the bones and muscles in your cervical/neck area of the spine, as well as all the other areas of the body. Therefore it is time to quit.
  • Sleep with correct head and neck posture. Sleeping with your head in an awkward position is an easy set-up for a strain and pain.
  • Stress and tension reduction.Tense muscles in the neck and shoulder often lead to pain in the neck. A few effective ways to reduce stress can be writing, talking to friends, exercising, walking, listening/playing music, art/crafts, cooking, reading,� and turn to these when the stress begins to build.
  • Driving safely and wearing seat belts can help prevent whiplash.
  • Using the proper equipment to protect your neck while participating in sports that can lead to neck injuries like football, skateboarding, wrestling, soccer is a must.


11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 126 Neck Pain Prevention Tips El Paso, Texas


Taking care of your body is a complex process. Lifestyle changes pave the way to wellness and making these changes will benefit more than just the neck.

Don’t worry about the list and try to check everything off. Look at the things that apply to you and try to implement a few of these tips one at a time. Keep the bigger changes like quitting smoking/losing weight in the foreseeable future. It takes time, patience and commitment. With a little hard work, it will pay off, and you should have a healthier life with less neck pain episodes and remember prevention is key.


11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 126 Neck Pain Prevention Tips El Paso, Texas


This is a popular therapy that relieves:

  • Aches
  • Fluid retention
  • Inflammation
  • Muscle tension
  • Pain
  • Spasms
  • Stiffness

Other benefits include improved blood and lymph circulation, flexibility, range of motion, and increased tissue elasticity. While increasing circulation the muscles are warmed along with other soft tissues like tendons and ligaments.



It is one of the most popular massage types in the US. Usually, therapeutic muscle lotion or oil is used to reduce friction and relax the area/muscles as the therapist performs light stroking in one direction with deep pressure in another to relax and loosen the muscles and surrounding ligaments/tissues.

This takes the blood flow and flushes lactic acid, uric acid, and other waste products from the muscles. The ligaments and tendons get stretched, which increases their soft but firm/strong feel. The nerves are stimulated and relaxed, with any stress in the muscles taken away. Relaxing the muscles is the overall goal.


Deep Tissue

This technique aims at chronic muscle tension. The strokes are slower, using more intense direct pressure to release the built-up stress, knots, and tightness. Depending on how deep the muscle and tissue stress maybe, the therapist will adjust their hand positions, strokes, and intensity periodically to work the tissues releasing tension.


Relaxing the Muscles

The therapist using their hands or tools to rhythmically knead, rub, and stroke muscles, circulation begins muscle stimulation. This blood flow brings needed oxygen and nutrients and helps the muscles eliminate waste products, like lactic acid, that can collect in the muscles brought on by spasms, which cause pain.


El Paso, TX Neck Pain Chiropractic Treatment


NCBI Resources

Individuals with chronic neck pain that don�t seem to have a cause, could be trigger points. A doctor will refer you to a�physical therapist, chiropractor or another spine specialist�to conduct an examination for trigger points.


Whiplash Massage Chiropractic Therapy El Paso, TX | Video

Whiplash Massage Chiropractic Therapy El Paso, TX | Video

Whiplash Massage: Sandra Rubio describes how whiplash-associated disorders resulting from an automobile accident can cause symptoms of neck pain. An injury to the cervical spine can damage the complex structures of the neck, including vertebrae, intervertebral discs and soft tissues like tendons, ligaments and muscles. Dr. Alex Jimenez, doctor of chiropractic, is a non surgical choice which provides several treatment methods, such as deep-tissue massage, which can help improve neck pain associated with whiplash from an auto accident.

whiplash massage el paso tx.Massage therapy�is the evaluation and manipulation of cells and joints of the human body to effect a curative response in the�prevention and treatment of physical dysfunction. It may be curative or preventative, helping to rehabilitate, to preserve, strengthen bodily function or relieve pain. Massage therapy has established its function as it achieves outcomes that were undeniable, as a wellness option used to alleviate an assortment of physical discomforts.

Massage helps alleviate the soft tissue discomfort associated with everyday stress, muscular overuse and lots of chronic pain syndromes. Massage treatment can decrease the development of painful muscular patterning if used early enough after accidents involving trauma and injury.

Whiplash Massage Therapy

Neck pain can come from various structures in the neck including: vascular, nerve, airway, digestive, and musculature or it can originate from other areas of the human body. Although the causes are many, most are easily rectified by either assistance or using self help suggestions and techniques. Treatment of neck pain is dependent upon the reason. For the vast majority of individuals, neck pain may be treated conservatively. Recommendations in conservative treatment include applying cold or heat. Other frequent treatments could include chiropractic care, physical therapy, body mechanics training, reform that is ergonomic, and drugs and/or medication.

If you have enjoyed this video and/or we have helped you in any way please feel free to subscribe and share us.

Thank You & God Bless.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, C.C.S.T

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Chiropractic And Massage Work Hand In Hand

Chiropractic And Massage Work Hand In Hand

Chiropractic and Massage: Duos often create more exciting outcomes. Lewis and Clark, the Lone Ranger and Tonto, and even Batman and Robin functioned more efficiently together than apart. Complementary pairings propel results and enhance efforts.

This is decidedly true with massage therapy and chiropractic care. While each offer considerable benefits on their own, they often mesh well with each other to create a comprehensive treatment plan for many conditions or injuries.

So, sit back and let us show you how massage therapy and chiropractic care are a pain-fighting, mobility-enhancing dynamic duo.

A Combination Of Both: Chiropractic And Massage

Massage Enables A More Effective Chiropractic Visit

Therapeutic massage warms up muscles and relaxes the individual’s entire body, enabling the chiropractor to maximize his or her chiropractic adjustment for optimal results.

Massage brings about a more stable adjustment.

When a chiropractor performs an adjustment to alleviate pain or increase mobility, pre or post massage couples with it to increase the body’s acceptance of the adjustment.

Chiropractic Takes Massage Therapy Further: Includes Joints & Bones

Each treatment offers strong relief and recovery to certain areas of the body. Massage produces relaxation in muscles, relieving tension and toxins. Chiropractic care picks up where massage leaves off and extends the treatment efforts to the body’s tendons, joints, bones and, ultimately, the nervous system.

Works On The Body As A Whole

Both treatments focus on broad rejuvenation and healing techniques for full body health. In a variety of instances, chiropractic care shows significant increases in treating the overall root of the problem when used in combination with massage therapy.

chiropractic and massage

Gets In The Head

Whoever said “it’s all in your head” wasn’t entirely wrong. Individuals sometimes feel stress, dread, or worry over health procedures in general, and chiropractic treatment is no different. Massage therapy serves to relax and de-stress a person, preparing them to go into chiropractic treatments less stressed or tightly wound. A relaxed person’s body tends to respond better to treatment.

Offers Shorter Recovery Times

Blending both treatments into one builds an all-encompassing regimen that works on the condition or injury from multiple points. Tackling health issues this way reduces the time is takes to heal and regain the body’s full mobility.

Decreases Discomfort

Massage therapy aids in warming up muscles, readying them for chiropractic adjustments. This experience is similar to stretching thoroughly before exercising. Pliant muscles offer less resistance to a chiropractor’s regimen, resulting in greater patient comfort. This benefits the entire process, as a painless, comfortable visit increases a person’s openness and commitment to future therapeutic endeavors.

Provides Longer Lasting Results

A relaxed body is more open to treatment. Both massage therapy and chiropractic care serve to attain the goal of healing and recovery, and pain minimization or management. Achieving a synergistic effect is possible when both treatments are employed simultaneously. Chiropractic care is known to work deeper and last longer when paired with massage therapy, especially with chronic, painful health issues.

Patients who seek help with bodily conditions or injuries benefit and see results from chiropractic and�massage therapy separately. Both forms of therapeutic relief used together may create an even more significant, longer last result. Chiropractic care and massage therapy complement each other and offer positive benefits to a variety of painful health issues.

Embark on a treatment plan with this healing, effective dynamic duo! Ask your chiropractor if your specific condition would benefit from both principles of care. Give us a call today!

D.C.’s Can Offer Tips On How To Improve Posture

Pope Francis & Sciatica Pain

Pope Francis & Sciatica Pain

Chiropractic, Massages & Spinal Injections Are Your Papal Prescription For Low Back & Leg Pain.

Should you suffer from the low back and leg symptoms of sciatica, the pope feels your pain. Reports reveal that Pope Francis has spent part of his 2017 summer undergoing spinal shots and massage therapy to help manage his sciatica.

Sciatica is intense low back and leg pain which runs along the course of the sciatic nerve, that is the longest and largest nerve in the human system. The sciatic nerve extends from your low back all the way down to a foot. Several spinal ailments can irritate the sciatic nerve and cause sciatica, including a herniated disc, lumbar spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, and trauma (you can read more in common sciatica causes). The root reason for Pope Francis’ sciatica is unclear.

The 80-year-old pope has suffered from sciatica for many years, having first remarked on his struggle with it in a 2013 through a media conference when he said, “Sciatica is very painful, very painful! I don’t wish it on anyone!”

More recently, the pope has received epidural steroid shots and massages twice a week to handle his back pain pain, according to the Italian news magazine Famiglia Cristiana.

Sciatica PSA

How Spinal Injections & Massage Can Help Relieve Sciatica

Pope Francis’ routine of epidural steroid injections and massages underscores the fact that while the pain of sciatica can be extreme–almost indescribable–spine operation isn’t always the answer. The pope’s non-surgical approach to sciatica pain management is one that many individuals suffering from the illness adopt.

With epidural steroid shots, strong anti-inflammatory drugs known as corticosteroids are injected near the spinal nerve roots. The therapy works with varying success, but some people experience decreased pain for months following an injection.

With massage, a therapist can target the muscle tension that may be compressing the sciatic nerve or associated nerve roots. Deep tissue massage treatment may be type of massage used, since it utilizes direct pressure and friction to release the pressure in the soft tissues (ligaments, tendons, muscles) surrounding the sciatic nerve.

Massage Therapy Center

Massage Therapy Center

Massage is a popular therapy used to relieve fluid retention, spasms, inflammation, muscle tension, pains and stiffness. Other benefits include improved circulation (blood and lymph), general flexibility, range of movement, and increased tissue elasticity (eg, scar tissue).

Another kind of massage contains full-body massage, which often leaves the patient feeling relaxed and free of anxiety.

How Can Massage Function to Relax Muscles?

As the therapist uses their hands or specialized tools to rhythmically knead, wipe, and stroke (effluerage) muscles, circulation is stimulated. Blood flow is essential to helping muscles eliminate waste products, such as lactic acid, that may accumulate in muscles from spasms and delivers oxygen and nutrients.

Following trauma, muscles may act as mini-splints like a cast on a broken arm to safeguard and limit motion. An average example is somebody who uses a computer for a prolonged time period without taking a break to stretch the neck. The result: a stiff, aching neck and occasionally pain. Taking regular breaks to rub (mini-massage) and stretch the neck will boost circulation to the muscles.


What’s Swedish Massage?

This really is one of the most famous types of massage in America. Often, a lotion or oil is used to lessen skin friction. The therapist combines light stroking in one way with deep pressure in another to loosen muscles. The treatment expedites blood flow to flush uric acid, lactic acid, and other waste products from the muscles. Ligaments and tendons are stretched, increasing their suppleness. Nerves are excited and relaxed, and anxiety is relieved. The general goal is to loosen muscles.

What Is Deep Tissue Massage?

Long-term muscle tension is targeted by this technique. The therapist’s strokes are slower, using more direct pressure and friction. Determined by the texture of the deeper layers of tissue and muscle felt, the therapist occasionally adjusts intensity, strokes, and their hand positions to work the tissues to release tension.

What Is Myofascial Release?

Myofascial release, or soft tissue mobilization, is a therapy used to release tension in the fascia. Fascia are sheets of fibrous tissue that encase and support muscles. Following injury, the fascia and muscles may shorten limiting the flow of blood. The techniques used in myofascial release loosen muscle tension and break up fascial adhesions.

What’s Trigger Point and Myotherapy?

The treatment goals include alleviating muscle spasms, enhancing circulation, and releasing trigger points.

The therapist extends the muscle using a technique called Stretch and Spray as trigger points are released. This technique incorporates a superficial cooling agent such as Fluori-Methane, a local anesthetic that depresses nerve reaction. The anesthetic is sprayed over muscles as they may be softly stretched, soothing tight muscles.

Are There Other Kinds of Massage?

There are many kinds of massage; only a few are mentioned here. Shiatsu is an old oriental treatment predicated on acupressure, as is Jin Shin Jyutsu. Reiki is a Japanese type of massage that attempts to correct the entire body’s energy.�Rolfing can be uncomfortable; the goal is to adjust the muscle fascia to its fullest extension.

A Word of Caution

Speak to your doctor, before getting a massage for back pain or neck pain. She or he may have the ability to refer you to a licensed or certified massage therapist.


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5 Tips for Finding Great Alternative Healthcare

5 Tips for Finding Great Alternative Healthcare

Synopsis: Finding the right healthcare provider for you isn�t always easy, especially if they aren�t in the mainstream. This article provides tips and strategies for people looking to find a healthcare provider that will meet their specific needs.

The term �alternative healthcare,� sometimes lumped into CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) isn�t always associated with good things in the general populace. The phrase all on its own lends itself to sounding very much second class.

Yet alternative healthcare is anything but; many practitioners are utilizing the latest treatments that�for reasons of funding or sometimes more sinister political agendas �simply don�t have enough studies yet done to fully back the care as �mainstream.�

Finding those expert caregivers isn�t always easy. Doctors aren�t like restaurants; it can be difficult to base your decisions on their online reviews because every patient�s circumstances are unique.

Luckily, there are a few tricks to finding good healthcare.


  1. Determine the Type of Care You Need

Before you seek care, you need to figure out what you actually need care for. Different specialties handle treatments that may be specific to your particular needs. For instance, a Chiropractor deals with the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system.

Functional medicine doctors handle many traditional complaints with minimal use of drugs and surgery and are more open to alternative treatments. Chinese medicine has also proven effective for numerous problems, from allergy elimination to pain relief. Physical therapists can help with recovery from injuries.

If you aren�t sure what the best type of doctor is, consider visiting major websites. For instance, the� website is a good place to visit if you need dental care that goes beyond what your regular dentist may offer.�helps you locate a variety of practitioners based on their field of expertise.

Worst case scenario, you may be in for one �wasted� trip to one of these doctors to determine who is best to visit.


  1. Be Prepared to Travel

The type of doctor you need to see may not live nearby; some patients travel hundreds of miles to see a specialist that can deal with their condition. My own doctor drives nearly two hours to see a chiropractor that can address his specific condition (there are other chiropractors in the area, but none with the technique he needs).

This is especially true if you live in a more rural area, as some smaller towns may only have a small handful of traditional doctors and few if any alternatives. You can get good results by searching online by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to alter your IP address.

You might consider this strategy because local results tend to be more thorough and exact while doing searches about a distant area give broader and less helpful results. A VPN is just an app that lets you connect to remote servers found in other locations; for instance, you could access a server in Los Angeles even if you live in Nevada and get results local to LA.

Obviously, local docs are preferable, but that�s not always good enough.


  1. Seek Referrals

Another great way to find doctors that can help is by seeking referrals. This can be done directly through your current doctor or by seeking out patients that have similar problems. Those that experience good results tend to want to spread their success by recommending good doctors.

One place to find concentrated reviews for specific doctors and practices is on Facebook. In many cases, there are support groups that have formed to discuss dealing with varying diagnoses and diseases.

These Facebook groups usually have members that are seeing physicians or have already been to physicians and want to share their knowledge. In some cases, Facebook groups are even run by practitioners that hope to spread awareness of the treatments they have available.�is nice for reviews as well, but you should always be cautious of reviews that you can�t discuss with the reviewer.


  1. Check Magazine Directories

Nationwide, you can access health directories to look for doctors available in your area. One of the more well-known sources is a magazine called Natural Awakenings. They publish listings of doctors practicing alternative medicine; you�ll find them available for free at grocery stores and some newsstands.

These types of magazines are also a great place to read about the latest advances in treatment and about different types of care being offered. While the publishing standards aren�t quite as high as a scientific journal such as The Lancet, they serve as a good starting point, particularly for treatments that don�t lend well to randomized controlled studies.


  1. Go to Expos

Serving as both an advertising opportunity for businesses and as an educational tool for patients, natural health expos held across the country are a great place to meet with doctors and staff face to face without having to actually pay for an office visit.

These conventions are perfect for viewing a variety of different professions and seeing what each has to offer. You�ll be given dozens of pamphlets; some will offer free samples of products, while others will actually demonstrate what it is they do.

You can use these opportunities to ask specific health questions to �interview� each doctor to see if they�re the right fit for your needs. It�s also a good place to shop around for different prices because many alternative treatments aren�t covered by insurance (or the offices themselves are cash practices and don�t take insurance at all).


6. Taking Control of Your Health



When visits to your doctor let you down or you�re just looking for better alternatives, you�re in for a bit of work. The process for finding a truly appropriate doctor for your condition(s) may be tedious and sometimes even expensive.

Yet the results are certainly worth the time and money. When you�ve put the time in to find that doctor that fits just right, the results will speak for themselves. Having a good healthcare practitioner to serve as a pillar of support in your life can truly turn around an otherwise dark situation.

And for those that already feel healthy, remember that prevention is the best medicine. Seeking a doctor that believes in maintaining maximum healthy function is a great way to avoid chronic diseases later in life.

Will you be at the helm of your health? Tell us what great healthcare means to you and how you intend to get it.


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By: Cassie at








About the Author: Cassie is a health enthusiast and technology writer. From her own experiences, she has learned a multitude of ways to efficiently locate doctors to treat conditions in ways that might otherwise be foreign to her primary care doctor.