UTI’s

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Urinary Tract infections are categorized as a bacterial infection of the urethra, bladder or kidney. This infection is usually from a bacteria in the intestinal tract such as E.coli and can infect both males or females.

What are the symptoms of Urinary Tract infection?

Strong and frequent urges to urinate
Painful or burning sensation when urinating
Strong smelling or Foul smelling urine odor
Back pain
Bloody or cloudy urine
Fever and fatigue
Chills and aches

How do we get a Urinary Tract infection?

So the two most common ways to get a urinary tract infection are not wiping properly and during sex (coitus). Men have gotten a bad wrap for having the dirty penis causing the UTI’s but typically in either scenario the infection of the urethra comes from transmitting bacteria in the ones own intestinal tract to the urethra. Our own bacteria is causing the infection. When our own intestinal E.coli or other bacteria go up the urethra, we get an infection. Women are more likely to get UTI’s than men due to the relative short nature of our urethra, but men also get UTI’s and unfortunately for men if there isn’t some sort of contact infection, it can often be an indicator for prostatitis or other male health issues.

How do you diagnosis a urinary tract infection?

Doctor’s direct a patient to do an in-office urinary dipstick test and if this is positive they may decide to send it out for a culture or they may not. Treatment is usually given based on a lab culture, if a doctor thinks that the white blood cell count in the urine is high enough. Blood in the sample usually indicates the infection is in the bladder and possibly to the kidney. The doctor may perform what is called a kidney punch test to determine if the infection has spread that high and if sensitivity is present to that point or not.

How are Urinary Tract infections Treated?

Western Medicine will usually treat using antibiotics but as many know, antibiotic use can alter the flora in your gut and reduce the body’s natural immunity.  There are alternative methods of treating mild UTIs that are just as effective and have fewer side effects than antibiotics.

In Chinese Medicine, we view a UTI as a damp heat accumulation in the Kidney and Urinary Bladder channels.  There are several acupuncture points along these channels that specifically benefit urinary function.  We would also use points on these and other channels to clear excess heat from the body.

If a patient has a full urinary tract infection they are treated with a course of antibiotics, our office will add D-mannose and Saccromyoces Boulardii to help prevent side-effects of the antibiotics and to prevent adherence of the bacteria while the antibiotics work. Cranberry pill or cranberry juice unsweetened are also excellent choices to help getting over an infection.

If you are someone who has chronic infections, it may be wise to do a stool sample to determine your good and bad bacteria that are present and balance them so future infections are not as easily contracted. Drinking cranberry juice somewhat regularly also can help prevent UTI’s. Practicing good habits, such as wiping front to back and urinating after sex can both be helpful. Changing toilets to the oval shaped bowel so that when men sit their penis doesn’t have contact with the toilet rim during bowel movements.

Chinese Herbal Remedies:

Ba Zheng Tang: This is a classic Chinese formula that clears damp heat from the urinary organs.

Long Dan Xie Gan Tang: This formula also clears damp heat from the kidneys and bladder but targets liver channel symptoms as well such as headache and dizziness.

Chuan Xin Lian: This formula is antibacterial and antiviral and is great for decreasing inflammation and clearing toxic heat.

What are the best Herbs for Preventing Urinary Tract infections?

Uva Ursi
Oregon Grape
Horsetail
Berberine
Corn silk
Cranberry

What are the best Home Remedies?
Drink natural cranberry juice (not the sugary kind)
Take 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar per day
Up consumption of healthy fats to balance hormones (cod liver oil, butter, chia)
Vitamin C
Acidophilus based probiotics
Crushed garlic as a natural antibiotic

 

Stomach Pain: Peptic Ulcers And Acid Reflux

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What are the common causes of stomach pain?

Some of the most common causes of stomach pain are gas, acid reflux, peptic ulcers, constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, SIBO, food sensitivities and over eating.

What helps to differentiate the cause of the pain?

• Gas – Bloating and pressure in the tummy that may cause flatulence or just pain.
• Diarrhea – bowel changes and frequent bathroom trips.
• Stomach flu – Bowel changes, vomiting
• Food Sensitivities – stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea or bloating.
• Constipation – bowel changes, straining during bowel movements, feel like have to go but not being able to
• Acid Reflux – burning in the throat, pain in the stomach or chest pain
• Peptic ulcers – stomach pain, burning in the stomach, belching
• SIBO – stomach pain, weight loss, vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, joint pain, fatigue

What is the treatment for each of these conditions?

• Gas – Activated Charcoal, removing gas causing foods, digestive enzymes or probiotics
• Diarrhea – change diet, probiotics, l-glutamine powder, food allergy testing
• Stomach flu – Drink broth and electrolytes when able, rest and BRAT diet
• Food Sensitivities – Remove irritable foods from diet, get allergy testing that tests both IgG and IgE antibodies (blood test), do a gut healing protocol with a doctor (see a standard protocol below).
• Constipation – change diet, probiotics, aloe vera liquid drink, fiber, food allergy testing, plenty of water, exercise, omega 3’s, prunes
• Acid Reflux – spoonful of baking soda (1/2 tsp baking soda in glass of water), aloe vera juice, no laying down after a meal, apple cider vinegar, stop smoking or drinking, chamomile tea
• Peptic ulcers – H. Pylori testing (stool or breath test), fenugreek, bananas, cabbage juice, DGL supplements
• SIBO – Glucose and lactulose breath testing, oregano oil, berberine, antibiotics, probiotics

When to go to the Doctor for stomach pain?

Any stomach pain that has lasted greater than 2 weeks and hasn’t responded to any of the home remedies you have tried warrants further investigation by a competent doctor. Pain that wakes you up at night is a good time to see the doctor, blood in your stool, eczema or rashes that won’t go away, not pooping daily even after taking probiotics, trouble eating or significant weight loss. If you have any of the above symptoms going on it is important to seek out a doctor. Our digestive health is very important and this is how we absorb nutrients to fight off infections. Living with an unhealthy gut can be detrimental to your overall health and your doctor will take these complaints very seriously.

What are Gut Healing Protocols? How would I do one?

Gut healing protocols usually come in several forms.
A stool sample can be taken to determine what imbalance exists. This type of individual should consult with a doctor to determine which substances can be used to help kill the harmful bacteria and restore balance to the Gut.
To determine true leaky gut, a blood test is needed and zonulin (intestinal permeablilty marker) is tested to determine if extra healing is needed in the tract to close the gaps and restore balance. If symptoms aren’t very severe you can attempt an at home protocol like the one seen below; however if more severe symptoms persist or the protocol isn’t helping, please seek a doctor for help.
Remove commonly Gut harmful foods: Sugars, wheat grains (that aren’t sprouted), Conventional meat products, Dairy products, and sometimes eggs.
Add healthy Gut healing foods: Bone Broth, Fermented Foods (sauerkraut, kombucha, veggies, kimchi), Coconut products (medium chain triglycerides are easier to digest than other fats), Sprouted seeds (Chia, flax, pumpkin, hemp etc.)
Repair with Healing supplements: L-Glutamine, DGL, Quercetin, Digestive enzymes
Probiotic Balancing: Probiotics that have diverse species count and a prebiotic either from food (Soluble fiber items: legumes, beets, okra, apples, peas, carrots) or in a supplement form

Pregnancy Protocol for Acupuncture

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Acupuncture is extremely beneficial for pregnant women.  At Light & Joy, we specialize in caring for you during this special time.  We often get questions about how it can help and how often patients should be treated throughout pregnancy.  Our basic protocol for pregnant patients is as follows:

Weeks 0-14

Weekly treatments are invaluable to support the pregnancy during the early weeks if there is a history of miscarriage and/or infertility.
For patients undergoing various western infertility treatments such as IVF or IUI, acupuncture can help to moderate the side effects of synthetic hormones the patients are taking and improve the chances of a healthy pregnancy.

For more typical pregnancies, treatment is recommended on an as needed basis for the variety of things that can come up and cause discomfort during the first trimester.  Women are often more anxious during the first trimester as they wait to get confirmation that the pregnancy is viable and the baby is healthy. Acupuncture relieves stress and anxiety and also helps with fatigue, headaches, and changes in mood as our bodies adjust to everything going on within. Chinese medicine is beneficial for managing nausea and hormone fluctuations as well.

Exercise tips: It is very important to stay active during your pregnancy.  We recommend getting some form of exercise 3-5 times per week. For the first trimester, exercise can be very difficult if you are not feeling well.  If nothing else, do your best to take walks.  You can take shorter walks 2-3 times a day if a longer walk doesn’t seem feasible.

If you are feeling good and want to be more active, just make sure you aren’t overdoing it. A good rule of thumb is to not start any new kind of exercise that your body isn’t accustomed to doing.  Stick to the basics and don’t overdo it.  The hormone relaxin is pumping through your body helping to prepare your body to carry a baby and birth it, so be careful not to overstretch as the relaxin makes your joints and muscles more mobile than normal.  Ask your health care practitioner if you are unsure about what types of exercise are appropriate for you.

Weeks 15-35

In the second trimester, pregnancy symptoms have usually subsided.  This is a time to take care of yourself and allow your baby and body to do their thing. We recommend treatments only as needed for things that may come up such as aches and pains, gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, acid reflux, and dermatological changes.

During week 34 or 35 the baby is checked for position.  If you find out that your baby is breech, we highly recommend coming in for treatment as soon as possible as this gives us the best chance of helping to turn your baby to a head-down presentation with our breech protocol. For breech presentation, we work in tandem with the chiropractors of In Health Clinic to achieve the best results.

Exercise tips: In the second trimester, most women are starting to feel much better, have their energy back and can eat normally.  Take advantage of the energy spurt and consider upping your exercise frequency or intensity. Yoga and swimming are great choices for pregnancy because they are very strengthening but gentle on the joints.

Weeks 36-40+

During these final weeks, we recommend weekly treatments to prepare your body for birth.  Again we focus on relaxing and opening up the hips and sacral area, creating space for the baby to move down into the birth canal.  Depending on your doctor’s instruction, we tailor the treatments to fit your birthing schedule and will often move into labor induction treatments just before or at 40 weeks. Induction treatments are usually performed every other day leading up to the birth. If there is a set medical induction date due to high blood pressure or gestational diabetes, for example, treatment will be performed daily.

Exercise tips: Kegels are always a good idea throughout pregnancy to help strengthen your pelvic floor and vaginal muscles.  This can help to prevent prolapse, incontinence, and more.  As you get bigger and maneuvering becomes more difficult, you may need to scale down your exercise program.  Consider taking more walks, as walking is good for birth prep as well.

Iris Martin LAc.
Light & Joy Acupuncture Inc.

The WooHoo of Chiropractic

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How Adjustments can benefit more than just the bones, joints and muscles.  The most common time for a patient to seek out a Chiropractor is when they are in pain or have just been injured.

We as a profession are known for our ability to treat Headaches, Neck pain and Low back pain.  For optimal health of the back, neck and head, it is suggested to get adjusted at least twice a year? We get our teeth checked twice a year but we never really think about the spine and how the nerves are affected when a spine or muscle isn’t functioning properly.  The common objection people have against seeing a chiropractor is: “if I start going, I will always have to go”.  The answer is, “Yes, if your body would only be so lucky to see a chiropractor all the time!”. The actual answer is NO, you will not have to keep coming back week after week.  We ask that you get checked two times a year to make sure you are maintaining proper function.  Every function in your body is determined by the nervous system as a whole and we know that the nervous system protector is the spine.  When a nerve is affected because your body is mis-aligned in the spine, we can measure that its electrical output goes down, meaning whatever that nerve controls will have a decrease in function.

Based on research, an adjustment of the L4 vertebra in athletes will strengthen the quad muscle.  We can measure this and see an improvement after an adjustment.  Do we know exactly how this happens?? “No” this is the WooHoo factor.  We also see that babies with constipation getting adjusted will suddenly be able to poop more effectively; we can observe it and measure it but we haven’t exactly been able to explain it yet and until our understanding of neurology expands in the medical profession we may not know, we have idea’s but no proven mechanism.

In our office I have also seen where adjusting the T9 vertebra will improve someone’s stomach pain and because I am a bit of a skeptic myself I always try this as a last resort looking for more organic and more explainable causes first.  But we are now taking a more holistic approach if someone comes in with stomach pain or a cough we will treat those symptoms and disease classically through oral supplementation as well as to adjust the patient, because there is no known way to tell by examining a patient externally if the nerve and interference to the nerve are part of that problem or not.  So we always make sure the spine is aligned so that we remove nerve impingement as part of problem, leaving other issues to be treated and dealt with.  Here is a short run down of what nerves innervate what organs:
Heart T1-T8

Lung T3-T9

Esophagus T5-T6

Stomach T5-T9

Doudenum T6-T10

Jejunum T8-T11

Large Bowel T8-L1

Appendix T9-L1

Liver T6-T11

Spleen T7-T10

Gallbladder T6-T11

Pancreas T7-T10

Kidney T9-L2

Ureter T9-L2

Testis/Ovary T10-T11

Prostate T10-T11

Uterus T12-L1

Before you go too long between your next adjustment remember two things; first, your nerves affect your organs and mis-alignment’s don’t just come from falling down but simple repetitive activity like sitting at a desk in front of a computer. Second, a joint that is unmoving for as little as one month will begin to show and develop arthritic changes (meaning that arthritis can develop from simply sitting at a desk and allowing a joint to remain stuck for long periods of time).

What is the Definition of Running?

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Running: to go quickly by moving the legs more rapidly than at a walk and in such a manner that for an instant in each step all or both feet are off the ground.

What are the main Muscles and Joints Involved?
Muscles used during running:
• Hamstrings – works when your foot leaves the ground and your leg moves forward to the next foot strike.
• Quadriceps- this muscle is used when your lower leg move from bent to a straight position.
• Gluteal Muscles – these muscles move your foot from a parallel position to the back of the body and you will especially notice the glutes when you run up hills.
• Hip Flexors- you feel the motion after your foot leaves the ground behind you and moves it forward to the next foot plant.
• Calves: once your foot leaves the ground when your heel is in the air behind and places behind your body, you will feel the calf muscle with running up hill specifically.
• Tibilais Anterior- this muscle dorsiflexes the foot and plants it down on the ground.
• Peroneals- this muscle works when your heel is elevated then drops to the ground.
Joints:
• Hip joint – Acetabulum joint
• Knee Joint- Tibiofemoral Joint
• Ankle Joint – Talus joint

What are the most common Injuries from running?
• Plantar Fasciitis
• Hamstring tendonitis
• Shin Splints – tibial stress syndrome
• Illiotibial band Syndrome
• Achilles Tendonitis
• Runners Knee – Patellar-femoral pain syndrome

How to prevent Running Injuries?
1. Improve flexibility by stretching after runs – will prevent most tendonitis issues by properly stretching and keeping someone flexible
2. Include strength training to keep muscles equal and balanced
3. Stay hydrated and eat proper meals to prevent a glucose crash during running
4. Warm up before any run
5. Gradually increase mileage to prevent overuse injury
6. Take periodic breaks in the training

How to Start Running?
Keep it simple, start running 20 minutes a day for 3 days. Then gradually add more time to your run and more days. Never increase either the time or the days till you feel comfortable at your current amount.

How running Injuries are treated?
This will depend on the severity of your injuries. Some injuries will require surgery, while others are treated with surgical alternatives like chiropractic, acupuncture, physical therapy and massage. Some botanical or pharmaceutical options can help with pain and inflammation.

In our office we use muscle release, massage and adjustments to keep our athletes healthy and running a peak efficiency.
Sports Injury Special:
Sports injuries can occur while either falling down while running or getting kicked in the shins during a soccer game, either way we have pain and want to get back on the field to continue to play. Homeopathic medicine is about healing the body at a basic level relieving the discomfort of the symptoms while allowing your body to do its natural healing process.
The following items are 3 homeopathic remedies(called the Acute injury trio) Dr. Walkers suggests you have on hand to be ready to treat a young players injuries or to help the husband/wife who likes to run half marathons, or these even work for tired joints and muscles after a long day at work.
1. Rhus Tox – for joint pain and inflammation take 3 pellets 4 times a day away from food.
2. Arnica – for all over body soreness or injury 4 pellets 4-5 times a day.
3. Bryonia – When it is painful to get back to running or back to your sport 4 pellets 4 times a day.

The Health Focus of the month is to make sure your medicine cabinet has some homeopathy in it to treat the families aches and pains in a more holistic and natural way. Pick up your Acute Injury Trio for $24 and use as directed.

*If symptoms or pain persist please seek direct professional or medical care.

In Health Clinic

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  • 15100 Los Gatos Blvd. Suite 1
  • Los Gatos, CA 95032
  • Telephone: 408-356-0270
  • FAX: 408-356-0273
  • E-mail: info@in-healthclinic.com

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