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Chiropractic and Immune System Health

Most people know that chiropractic care focuses on spinal health and alignment. What you may not know, however, is why chiropractors advocate for spinal health and alignment. It has to do with overall health and the role your spine plays in the functions of your body.

Your body operates on a series of complex and interconnected systems including, but not limited to, the skeletal, muscular, respiratory, digestive, nervous, and immune systems. The spinal cord, housed within the vertebrae of your spinal column, is directly linked to your brain, which single-handedly controls and operates these systems. The spinal cord is a kind of information highway, linking your brain to the rest of the body through a series of branching nerve pathways.

The goal of chiropractic is to keep your spine in tip-top condition to avoid any complications. Subluxation is the misalignment of the bones (vertebrae) that make up your spine. This misalignment can put unnecessary pressure on your spinal cord, leading to pain, discomfort, headaches, and even indigestion or decreased immunity. When your spinal cord is blocked or hindered in any way by the structures surrounding it, the nerve pathways are interrupted as well, and the information traveling from the brain to the rest of your body cannot flow freely.

The immune system is responsible for protecting your body from bacteria, viruses, toxins, and other malevolent intruders. It’s your body’s line of defense against the outside world, performing tasks such as

  • creating and releasing white blood cells to attack any pathogenic substances in the body,
  • operating the lymphatic system to filter out germs and prevent them from spreading throughout the body, and
  • regulating the acidic levels of your body (particularly along the digestive tract) to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

When your immune system is not operating at full capacity, then your body is left defenseless against pathogens that may cause harm. In this way, chiropractic care acts as a preventative measure against sickness and disease. A chiropractor will make small, non-invasive manipulations to the vertebrae, gently guiding them back into their correct alignment. With an unobstructed spinal cord, information can flow much quicker and your body can respond much faster to any potential threats. By correcting your spinal health, you’re caring for your overall health as well.

So make an appointment with your local chiropractor today! If you live in the Gastonia area, we here at DiBella Chiropractic Center would love to have you join our family. Contact us and get started on the path to wellness!

How Chiropractic Assists Weight Loss

Chiropractic health centers around good spinal health. We believe that healthy living starts with healthy vertebrae. At chiropractic offices, people are often told that this form of therapy is excellent for overall health. But many people may not fully understand just how far-reaching the effects of subluxation (misaligned vertebrae) can go.

Not only does subluxation cause back, shoulder, and leg pain, but it can actually interrupt or hinder the natural processes of your body. Your nervous system, your digestive system, your immune system, and many others are all at risk if the signals cannot properly travel from the brain to the rest of the body.

One little-known benefit of chiropractic care is an increased ability to lose weight. If you or someone you know has ever tried losing weight, you know how difficult it can be. You’ve tried special diets, rigorous workout regimens, and even seen specialists on how to shed those extra pounds. But have you considered making an appointment with a chiropractor? It may seem unorthodox, but let us give you the facts:

  • Through chiropractic adjustments, your spine will be relieved of pressure from subluxations and herniated discs. You’ll begin to see that your pain will decrease and lessen with time, and you’ll find yourself growing more energetic and less stiff. All these things combined can be the perfect motivation to continue your exercises. They should be much easier and, therefore, you should be able to do them with increased frequency and precision.
  • As mentioned above, chiropractic care can have profound effects on the body and its involuntary processes. This includes digestion. Perhaps your digestive system isn’t operating at full capacity. If that’s the case, a regular treatment schedule with consistent adjustments can work wonders. You’ll find your body working at a higher efficiency.
  • Although chiropractors focus primarily on the spine, they typically have a more holistic knowledge of overall health than you may realize. Consult your chiropractor on the best exercises to perform at home. Ideally, these will help you correct your posture while also building and toning muscle. They may also have extensive knowledge on dietary needs and restrictions, and they might help you build an eating plan that matches your weight-loss goals.

In summary, the chiropractor can be an excellent source of knowledge when it comes to losing weight. Be sure to ask your physician during your next appointment. If you’re looking for a chiropractor to call home, we would love to have you with us here at DiBella Chiropractic Center. Drop by our Gastonia offices, or give us a call and make an appointment today!

Long-Term Effects of Occupational Injuries

Whether you work in an office or on the floor of a manufacturing facility, all employees are at risk of occupational injuries. When you consider workplace injuries, you may immediately have visions of falling from high places or getting caught in the heavy machinery. But not all injuries are quite that drastic, and many happen over longer periods of time. What you do, and how you go about doing what you do, can have long-term effects on your health. Your body may not show signs of trauma right away, but extended periods of strenuous activity may have negative consequences.

For example, consider how you sit at your desk while working. You probably sit in a standard office chair and look at your computer screen a great deal throughout the course of a typical day. Is that chair supporting the entire length of your spine, especially your lower back? At what angle is your computer monitor set? Do you find yourself constantly having to position your neck up or down to view the screen? Can you comfortably reach everything on your desk without repeated stretching?

These questions will highlight the ergonomics of your workspace, particularly those that need adjustment. Perhaps you need to find a new desk chair that better supports your back. Perhaps you can rearrange your desk so that everything is within arm’s reach. Perhaps you can adjust the angle of your computer screen so it’s at eye level. All of these things will reduce fatigue and alleviate any repetitive motions that may cause long-term damage to your body.

But what if you work a more active job? What if you spend your days moving, lifting, carrying, climbing, or such other strenuous activity? Then you are even more at risk for a potentially serious injury. The important thing to remember is not to push your body beyond its limitations. Practice safe lifting techniques, don’t try to carry more than you can handle, and be especially careful around high places and heavy machinery.

No matter how much we might try to minimize the impact on our bodies, we tend to fall out of alignment anyway. After all, a body in use needs a tune up now and then. Consult your physician for more tips on how to protect yourself in the workplace, and consider making an appointment with your local chiropractor or here with us at DiBella Chiropractic Center. Correcting the alignment of your spine will ensure less pain and a greater quality of life. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!

How Proper Breathing Can Help Your Posture

Your posture and the alignment of your spine is crucial to the overall health of your body. When you think of ways to keep your posture in check, perhaps you imagine walking, standing, and sitting with your back upright and your shoulders pulled back. While this is good, there are other ways of maintaining a good posture that you may not have considered. Breathing, for example, is just as vital to the strength and stability of your spine as holding yourself upright.

So, how exactly does breathing help to improve posture? Before we answer that question, we need to understand what happens when you breathe. As you inhale, your lungs expand to fill and lift your ribcage. This causes your spine to extend, increasing the space between the vertebrae and releasing any pressure built up between the bones of your spine. Such movement will cause a kind of reset as your spine returns to a more neutral position. In this way, breathing can actually reinforce and correct the natural curvature of your spine.

The key is to breathe deeply. Shallow breaths won’t do much good, but breathing too deeply can cause strain, and you might injure yourself by trying too hard. Try some exercises and yoga poses to encourage deeper breathing and maximize the health benefits. Below is a list containing some routines to get you started.

  • First and most simply, sit in a comfortable upright position and bring focus to your breathing. Concentrate on elongating your spine and begin breathing at regular intervals: inhale for four counts, hold for four counts, and exhale for four counts.
  • Second, begin standing in neutral position. Inhale and raise your arms straight above your head so you feel a nice stretch along the sides of your body. Exhale and bring your arms back to your sides. Try to control your breathing so that it and the motion of your arms are perfectly synchronized.
  • Finally, acquire a yoga block, a pillow, or a rolled up towel. Lay flat on the floor and place the wedge under your back below your shoulder blades. Spread your arms and place them on the floor beside you. This position will help to open up your chest and expand your lung capacity. Now lie still and breathe deep for several minutes.

Set aside some time every day and focus on your breathing. Your spine will thank you! If you’re looking for a chiropractor in the Gastonia area, consider making DiBella Chiropractic Center your home. Contact us or drop by our offices to make an appointment and get started today!

Effects of Subluxation

The word “subluxation” is thrown around quite a bit in the chiropractic field. If you’ve spent any amount of time in a chiropractic care facility or read up on the practice, then you might understand that subluxation is a reference to a misalignment of the spine. But what does it actually mean? What kind of negative effects might it have on your body? And how, ultimately, is it corrected? We’ll address these and other questions below.

First, what exactly constitutes a subluxation? How is it officially defined by licensed chiropractors? Simply put, a subluxation is a misalignment of the vertebrae that make up the spine. Vertebrae are not entirely stationary and may be dislocated slightly if exposed to certain stressors. Subluxation is not always the result of a major trauma. It can occur naturally due to minor irregular body movement, prolonged physical activity, or even gravity.

So, in what ways might a subluxated spine have negative effects on your body? There are several, and it’s important to understand why that is. The spine is a central part of your nervous system, which works behind the scenes to control your senses, thoughts, movements, and other bodily processes such as heartbeat and digestion. So if your spine is misaligned, the information that travels through the spinal cord cannot efficiently reach its destination or return to the brain. Here are a few of the ways subluxation can negatively impact your body:

  1. Physical Pain. A dislocated vertebra can lead to physical health problems such as pain, tenderness, and headaches.
  2. Emotional Instability. In extreme cases, untreated subluxations can lead to emotional issues such as anxiety and depression.
  3. Immune Deficiency. While impaired, your body cannot fully or effectively fight infections. This means that your ability to defend against pathogens is severely decreased, and you are more likely to get sick.
  4. Decreased Mental Capacity. A subluxated spine can lead to a foggy brain. You may find it difficult to concentrate on your work or other household tasks.

So how does one correct a subluxated spine? A chiropractor is trained in performing focused, unobtrusive manipulations to the spine. These manipulations, or adjustments, can push the vertebrae back into alignment without excess pain or discomfort. If you’re suffering the effects of subluxation, consider making an appointment with your local chiropractor. Dibella Chiropractic Center is located in Gastonia, NC. If you’re looking for a chiropractor to call home, we would love to have you. Give us a call or swing by our offices today!

Chiropractic Licensing Requirements in North Carolina

When you go to the chiropractor, you are entrusting the doctors with your health and the health of your spine. You want someone who is knowledgeable and skilled in their field, someone who has put in the time and effort to be good at what they do. Fortunately, there are regulations in place that require a certain level of training and certification before one can begin their own practice. If you’re standing in a chiropractic care center, then you can rest assured that the doctors and nurses have completed the necessary prerequisites.

The North Carolina Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NCBOCE) is responsible for setting specific standards and fielding applicants in our state. So what are today’s requirements for receiving chiropractic licensure according to the NCBOCE, you may ask? Let’s take a closer look at the process.

  • First things first, the proper educational background is essential. Applicants must submit proof that they have received a Doctor of Chiropractic Degree before applying for licensure in North Carolina. This should be presented in the form of an official college or university transcript.
  • Applicants must also acquire three certificates of “Good Moral Character” for submission. These are equivalent to references, though the NCBOCE requires that two of the three references be from currently-licensed chiropractic physicians in good standing with the board.
  • To ensure complete disclosure, as well as the safety and of future patients, the licensure application process requires that applicants undergo a background check. This includes a fingerprint-based scan of past criminal history.
  • The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) administers an exam in four parts. These scores must be sent to the NCBOCE along with your licensure application, and the applicant must have received a passing score on each part in order to qualify.
  • On top of everything, once the above materials have been acquired and submitted, an applicant must then take the NC Jurisprudence Presentation and Exam. This tests the applicant’s legal knowledge regarding the NC chiropractic system. The exam ensures a holistic and well-rounded knowledge of chiropractic care, with regard to ethics as well as health and wellness.

Indeed, the chiropractic licensing requirements in North Carolina are quite rigorous. The process contains a number of steps and requirements ultimately designed to ensure the patients’ safety and wellbeing. So, you can rest assured that your chiropractor is held to the highest of standards. If you’re looking for a chiropractor to call home, consider DiBella Chiropractic Center in Gastonia, NC. We would love to have you join our family!

Could A Stomach Problem Actually Be A Nerve Problem?

A chiropractor specializes in correcting and realigning one’s spine. The spine is one of the most important parts of the body. Made up of many individual vertebrae, the spine surrounds and protects the spinal cord, which travels from your brain. Together, the brain and the spinal cord make up your central nervous system. This is the information highway of your body. Similarly, the peripheral nervous system is made up of nerves branching from the spinal cord to all parts of your body. As a whole, your nervous system is responsible for movement, speech, sensation, thoughts, and involuntary processes such as heartbeat and digestion.

The primary focus of the chiropractor is to keep that information highway running smooth, free of traffic jams. If any vertebrae are out of place or misaligned, that bone may cause a blockage. This, in turn, may have varying degrees of effect on the nervous system and the functions listed above: movement, speech, sensation, thoughts, and involuntary bodily processes.

When people think of symptoms that typify the presence of subluxation in their spine, they think back pain, headaches, numbness or loss of feeling, and decreased range of motion. But what about something as simple as digestion? Might your subluxation cause pain and discomfort in the stomach? Absolutely!

The reality is that your nervous system and your digestive system are closely connected. Whether you realize it or not, your nervous system is responsible for efficiently digesting the food you eat. Gastrointestinal issues are frequently associated with poor nutrition, including eating too much or eating the wrong kinds of food. But that’s not always the case. Occasionally, when our spine is misaligned, our digestive system may not work as efficiently as it should. Often, the misfiring of the nerves in our spine can prevent our body from absorbing some or all of the nutrients in the foods we eat. This makes them more difficult to digest, which may lead to gastrointestinal issues with symptoms such as cramps or general abdominal pain.

If you’re experiencing stomach troubles, you may not have to jump on that new diet just yet. It could be that your body is just processing your nutrition inefficiently. If that’s the case, see a chiropractor and explain your symptoms. Through a series of minor, unobtrusive spinal adjustments, they should be able to help restore full functionality back to your body. DiBella Chiropractic Center is located in Gastonia, NC. Stop by our offices or give us a call to make an appointment today!

At-Home Exercises for Spinal Health

Going to the chiropractor is wonderful for your overall health. By adjusting and re-aligning your spine, you are boosting your body’s natural defense mechanisms against aches, pains, and illness. A chiropractor is trained in the practice of spinal manipulation, so office adjustments are typically most effective.

But what about the time between appointments? Is there anything you can do to maintain your spinal health? There are, in fact, ways to keep yourself in shape from the comfort of your own home. Here is a list of exercises that you can try to maximize and lengthen the positive benefits of chiropractic care.

  • The Cobra. This is one of the simplest poses physically, but it will give you a great stretch. Begin flat on your stomach, preferably on a yoga mat or other non-slip surface. Use your forearms to push your chest and head upwards. For maximum stretching, hold this pose at arm’s length with your hands flat on the ground.
  • The Child’s Pose. The Cobra pose transitions nicely into the Child’s Pose. Ease yourself downward, and fold your legs under your body in a kneeling position. Hands still placed on the mat, stretch them forward as far as you can reach and bring your forehead to meet the ground in front of your knees. It’s recommended that you hold this pose for several minutes, allowing the tension in your spine to dissipate.
  • Cat & Cow. Begin by kneeling on all fours, back parallel to the ground. Push your chest, stomach, and lower back forward and tilt your head backward to perform the cow stretch. Do the opposite to perform a cat stretch.
  • Knees to chest. Begin by lying flat on your back. Bring both knees up toward your chest and hold them in place with your arms, stretching the lower back. Hold only one leg at a time to perform an additional stretch. With one knee raised, turn toward your other leg and lower your raised knee to the ground.
  • Pelvic bridge. Like in the previous exercise, you will begin laying flat on your back. Raise your legs so that your feet are resting flat on the ground, and ensure your arms are resting on the ground parallel to your body. Use your arms to lift your lower back off the ground. Hold this pose for several seconds, lower, then repeat for several reps.

It’s true, chiropractic adjustments are beneficial to your health. But you can continue to improve your wellness at home with these simple exercises. Spend 10-15 minutes every day with these stretches, and you may find that your spine doesn’t need quite as much correction when it comes time for your next adjustment. If you’re looking for a chiropractor to call home, DiBella Chiropractic Center in Gastonia, NC would be happy to work alongside you. Contact us today and schedule an appointment today!

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