THE SPINAL COLUMN
ALPHA CHIROPRACTIC NEWSLETTER
Dr. Steven Covey is the best-selling author of the book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. This has become one of the most popular and, dare I say, one of the most valuable books ever written. Recently I was reading about an interview with Dr. Covey. He was quoted as saying -
This seems like an obvious statement, and yet most of the world is actually in a hole as far as its health goes. The problem is that many people do not even know they are in a hole because their lack of health has not yet manifested to a point where they notice it. These people are like the frog in a pot of warm water that stays in the pot as it is slowly heated until it is totally cooked!
Even those who DO know they have a health problem usually don't recognize this as a hole. In other words, they believe something from the outside has invaded their world and is stealing their health. The truth is that when you can more fully express your innate intelligence you automatically have more health...AND SO MUCH MORE! When we are not fully demonstrating this intelligence, it is in fact as if we have dug ourselves into a hole - and what we have been removing as we have been digging is the active expression of our constructive and intelligent innate life force.
In this same interview, Dr. Covey also made the statement - The biggest trouble-maker you will ever have to deal with watches you shave his face in the mirror every day! He is saying that we are definitely responsible for a very large part of whatever we are experiencing in our lives as far as health, or anything else for that matter.
So, how do we stop digging? Well, the answer is to stop thinking you are helpless as far as the answer to your problems. You must believe that you have the power to lift yourself back out of the hole, or at least progressively work your way out. But, in order to begin the process of lifting yourself back into the world, you must first look up! Once you can see what is up there, all you need do is keep looking up and act with faith that you will eventually get to where you should be - even if the world keeps throwing more dirt into your hole!
It is like the story about a mule that fell into a well. No matter what he tried the farmer couldn't get him out so he decided to burry it in the well so that it would not suffer. But, each time he threw a shovel of dirt into the well, the mule would shake it off and step up. Of course it took awhile for the farmer to notice this. He didn't actually see any evidence that the mule was rising up until he had been filling in the hole for a long time. Nonetheless, the process was happening! Soon, the mule just stepped back out into the light.
How do you fill in the hole you have dug for yourself? By living a lifestyle, that actively creates health! Each thing you do is like a shovel full of light that begins to fill in the darkness. This will take time, but act with faith! This universe has been set up in such a way that whosoever believes can receive!
There's just one more thing. Many people who have seen the possibility for creating change never quite make it out of their hole because of the input they get from the world around them. Some of the people in our lives actually try to keep us in our holes. Others give advice they believe is helpful that in the long run only serves to confuse us and slows our process of reaching the light. Do you have some of these people in your life? Of course you do. Bless them, for they have allowed you to know what you do not want. Steven Covey said one more thing I would like to share with you -
Begin surrounding yourself with people who regularly drink from the mouth of the river, not so far downstream that they are ingesting all of the garbage the water has picked up along the way. These people are all around you, many of them right in front of your face. They have been there waiting for you to look up and join with them in creating a better world but you have been so busy looking down into your hole you haven't noticed them. But look up! Believe! Step up! And pretty soon, you'll see that every day is filled with light!
"There you go, your Power's on full blast again!" Joe got up off the table slowly because of his back pain. He looked at me and asked the following question, "Hey Doc, I have a tube of lotion at home called 'Biofreeze' I got from a different chiropractor years ago. Would it be a good idea to use that on the muscle spasms in my back?"
"What's it called?" I asked him. "Biofreeze," he repeated. "Well," I answered, "Let's see... Do you know what the prefix BIO means, Joe?" He looked at me and answered, "Life?" "That's right! Now, what does the word FREEZE mean?" "Ummmm...cold?" Joe responded, not sure where I was going with this. "Well, actually it also means STOP - you see, when something freezes, the movement of its molecules significantly slows down or even stops." "OK," he said, still bewildered.
"What did I say to you when you got off the table just now?" I asked him. "POWER'S ON!" "That's right!" I responded, "What do you think I mean by that?" "Well, I guess it means my energy - my power is turned on again," he said. "OK," I continued, "So I just turned your Life Power back on, and now you want to know if you should go home and use a product whose name literally means LIFE STOP - Do I have that right?" Joe laughed and said goodbye.
What Joe did not realize (like most people) is that no part of the body (including a muscle) ever acts on its own. The only way it can act is by receiving a message from your innate intelligence through your brain or spinal cord and the rest of your nerve system. This means that specifically "treating" a muscle (or any other body part for that matter) is simply addressing effect, rather than cause. Let's take a look then at why a muscle might go into an involuntary sustained contraction, or what we call a "spasm." There are only two primary and several secondary reasons why this may happen.
1. PROTECTIVE/HEALING SPASM - If a muscle is injured, it may contract to keep from being passively stretched and injured further. It is actually protective in this way. In addition, the spasm increases the metabolism in the muscle, increases circulation and speeds healing.
2. TOXIC SPASM - If there is a build up of toxic substances in a muscle (like lactic acid after a workout, drug effects, blood, or if a foreign substance has been directly injected into the muscle), it may go into spasm to increase the metabolism and circulation in order to more quickly clear the toxin.
3. COMPENSATORY SPASM - Here are several examples of these;
A. PROTECTIVE SPASM - A muscle may spasm to restrict movement in an injured or inflamed joint so that it is not as easily irritated and to speed healing.
B. REFLEX SPASM - This is another form of protective spasm.
C. NUTRITIONAL DEFICIENCY SPASM - An example of this might be a calcium deficiency that causes nighttime cramping in the legs.
D. NEUROLOGICAL SPASM - Subluxation (nerve interference) may cause an abnormal amount of mental impulse to be sent to the muscle and it may go into spasm.
E. BALANCING SPASM - This spasm is to compensate for a structural imbalance (like an anatomically short leg on one side) or a muscle weakness somewhere else. The primary weakness may be due to disuse, healing from injury/surgery or possibly because of decreased of mental impulse caused by subluxation.
Whenever you attempt to reduce or remove a primary muscle spasm, whether through medications, creams, ice, heat, stretching, physiotherapy or any other means, I would like to know one thing - Which of these primary healing and protective mechanisms are you attempting to stop - and WHY? If it is a compensatory spasm you are addressing, why are you bothering? Just take care of the primary problem and the spasm will disappear on its own!
Instead of trying to second guess your innate intelligence, why not just remove the CAUSE of the spasm and allow this intelligence to release the spasm at the right time and in the right amount, while always providing and allowing the proper amount of protection?
You see contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as "just a spasm!" Your body's inborn wisdom knows when it needs to send a muscle into spasm. This also means it knows when and how to release that spasm - BUT THERE MUST BE AN OPEN LINE OF COMMUNICATION BETWEEN THE BRAIN AND BODY FOR THAT TO OCCUR!
Getting checked and adjusted if necessary on a regular basis ensures that your nerve system is free and clear to transmit any and all incoming and outgoing messages between the brain and the body.
There is another thing to consider here as well. As your innate intelligence is better expressed following an adjustment, your body will heal whatever most needs to heal NEXT in order for your WHOLE BODY to move to the next level of wholeness. This may be the muscle that is in spasm or it may be something else. If you do not trust that this is true and you apply some kind of "treatment" to the muscle, you will direct the healing forces to go where YOU believe they most need to go (i.e., the muscle) and actually INTERFERE with what your body is trying to accomplish OVERALL during the healing process. This may in fact bring relief of symptoms, but what harm has it done in the long run?
The point of this article is not to turn you into a physiologist, but to help you see the incredible miracle that you have inside of you! People are always telling me about the miracles they have seen once they are under chiropractic care. Please allow me to share one I experienced myself just this morning.
I had some freshly juiced vegetable juice for breakfast this morning. Do you know what has happened to it by now? Well, I don't know EXACTLY what has happened to it but it is entirely possible that it is becoming new spleen tissue right now, or maybe new liver tissue - How exciting! This is a miracle! EVERYTHING that happens in your body is a miracle - not just the "big" things - and it's all because of the incredible perfection that has been placed within you.
You may ask why other chiropractors apply treatments to reduce or eliminate muscle spasms. I cannot speak for them. All I know is that I have a saying in my office that I will always fall back on-
I trust that with me allowing your innate intelligence to be better expressed following an adjustments, and with you living a health creating lifestyle, whatever needs to happen will in fact happen at the right time and in the right way as LIFE FREELY FLOWS! And I certainly would NEVER consider having you use a product called "Life-Stop!"
Sixty-six percent of your body is water, so replenish yourself with the best: pure natural source spring water. If you feel thirsty, you're already dehydrated - drink water regularly and your body will thank you. -From the label of a bottle of natural spring water.
Even the people who make a living by selling bottles that they have filled with water (that comes free from nature) understand a very important concept, one that most people, including doctors, miss. By the time a symptom appears, the body may have been in trouble for a while.
Now we all know that dehydration is a bad thing, in fact, it can be fatal. The first signs of this condition are a feeling of thirst and the best treatment for the condition is to drink water. Most people do not think about the condition of dehydration in their body, they don't even think about treating the symptom they just think that they are thirsty so they grab their favorite beverage.
In fact, the guy who plays softball on a hot summer evening and then quenches his thirst with a couple of beers does not realize that the alcohol is probably dehydrating his body even farther. That's the problem with depending upon how we feel to determine whether we are healthy or our bodies are working properly. Feelings can be deceiving and are subject to wide variations.
Not only are symptoms a poor indication since they can be easily altered with alcohol or drugs but according to the water bottle label, your body is already in need of water and therefore not functioning as it should before you are even aware of the need for water (feel thirsty).
So if you cannot depend upon symptoms, even the symptom of thirst, to tell you when your body is in need of something, what can you depend upon? In most issues you really have to depend upon common sense for the most part.
So-called authorities tell us we should drink 6-8 glasses of water a day but that is only an average and does not reflect your daily need, or your specific need, for example if you are playing softball on a hot day. In the case of water, it would seem that you should drink enough every day so that you are never thirsty. If that is only four glasses on a particular day because you consumed large quantities of fruits and vegetables, then that may be all you need. Another day you may need twelve. If you are thirsty, well, that means you are not getting enough water. It's not easy but it's the only way to experience a properly functioning body.
When it comes to vertebral subluxation, there is absolutely no way you can tell by symptoms or feelings that you need a chiropractic adjustment. We were designed with a thirst mechanism because the need for water is a normal part of life. Eating is a normal part of life, so we have hunger pangs.
We were not designed to be subluxated. It is not normal. It comes from the inability to handle physical, chemical, and emotional stresses caused by the current lifestyles we lead. There are no reliable symptoms to indicate that a vertebra is out of its proper position and interfering with the function of the nerve system. In most instances a subluxation is present without any symptoms. You do not know if they are present.
If that dysfunction lasts long enough and parts of the body begin to break down, there may eventually be symptoms although it may be too late or damage may already have occurred that is beyond the body's ability to repair.
It only takes a moment to satisfy your thirst mechanism. After that, the body does the rest by replenishing the cells and tissues with the needed fluid. In similar fashion, the chiropractic adjustment takes only a few moments. After that, the body sends life-giving messages to all of the parts of your body so coordinated activity can occur.
Water is essential to life. The human body can only live about three days without it. The life force is even more essential to life. The human body cannot live three seconds without it and cannot reach its potential when there is an interference to it. Be sure to get your spine checked regularly for nerve interference so that you can be at your best.
Do you realize how many people there are in your community that don't know about chiropractic?
There are kids growing up with subluxations.
With knowledge comes responsibility.
Tell people about chiropractic.
"Hi Doc, could you read my blood test results for me and then tell me how I'm doing?" Jane had come in to get checked and had brought me a two page printout of a comprehensive blood test from her medical doctor.
"Sure Jane, just give me a second." I walked down into my basement and grabbed a book off the shelf and returned to the adjusting room. "Here Jane, while I'm reading your blood test results, I would like you to read any two pages in a row in this book."
"What is the book?" She asked.
"Oh, it doesn't matter. It's just a book I pulled at random off the shelf in my basement," I replied. She looked confused but agreed to do as I asked. I also did as she asked and read the report. When she was finished, she said, "OK, I'm done." "Me too," I answered.
"Well, tell me all about myself!" Jane said.
"You first," I replied, "Tell me all about that book. What's the whole book about?"
Jane looked at me as if I were crazy. "What?" she asked, I don't know what the whole book is about, I only read two pages!"
"But I really, really want to know what the whole book is about," I answered back.
"Well then you're going to have to have more information than I have," Jane responded, "I would only be guessing."
"Me too, Jane," I answered back.
You see, blood tests are based upon a sample of blood that takes less than one minute to collect. It is then "analyzed" and is supposed to tell you and your doctor all about you and how you are doing.
The fact is, the results of your blood test are simply the physical evidence of what you have been thinking, saying, and doing in the few days previous to the day the sample was collected. Without more information, it has very little value and cannot really give you what you have been led to believe it can. Without a lot more information, your doctor, like Jane, can only guess.
Now, I don't mean to say that no one should ever get a blood test, or that there isn't value in checking how you have been living your life. And there are many health issues that a blood test can catch early so that you can get the proper care needed. But in most instances don't we pretty much know the answer to that question before we take the test?
In other words, aren't you pretty clear on how often you have felt peaceful and how often you have felt stressed out? How much time have you taken to actually CREATE peace and laughter each day? How often have you been purposefully deep breathing and how clean was the air you've breathed? How much water did you drink and how clean was the water? What kinds of foods and chemicals have you been ingesting and how well did you digest and assimilate these, and how well did you eliminate the waste products? Had you fasted before the test? If so, for how long did you fast? How much movement have you been getting and how much have you been sedentary? How much sleep did you get and what quality was that sleep? How much have you been exercising? Was there food in your stomach at the time you did? What were your thoughts as you were exercising? Did you do it at the proper heart rate or were you just really going for it? How clear was your nerve system during those days before you had the test done (since your nerve system is the master control system and will affect everything else we have asked about here)?
You see, there are just too many variables in our lives to be able to look at a blood test and derive much meaning about ourselves. And let's not forget that the "normal" values are actually "average" values that may not be normal for some people. These so called "normal" values have also been known to change under pressure from some drug companies that would like to sell more drugs. So again, remember that the results are only the physical evidence of your thoughts, words and actions for the past few days, and you already know what those have been anyway.
So what do you do now?
Well, the first thing to do is realize that your body is continually building itself anew! The question is, will it build you the way you were meant to be - or some other way? Your thoughts, words and actions FROM THIS POINT FORWARD - AS WELL AS HOW WELL YOUR BRAIN AND BODY CAN COMMUNICATE - will determine the answer to that question.
Begin progressively cleaning up what you think, say and do, and get yourself and your family to the chiropractor to make sure your nerve systems are clear. That way you will be deliberately creating the bodies and lives our Creator had in mind when you were placed here. Then the only thing you might need to worry about is how to spell the word SHMUDD!
Chiropractic allows the intelligence that runs the body to better express itself through the tissues of the body.