Thumb Pain Treatment Using Chiropractic and Acupuncture

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

The thumb is a necessary human appendage we use for many activities. From opening doors to driving, writing, typing, and cooking, we use our shortest, widest digit daily. Injuring the thumb affects our ability to communicate, travel, work, and play. Treatment of thumb pain, therefore, is crucial. At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, we take thumb pain seriously and bring the most effective alternative medicine methods to each patient to heal thumb pain naturally, quickly, and effectively.

Diagnosing Thumb Pain

Nerves from the spine sending messages to the thumb arise from the sixth cervical level, the lower part of the neck. Dr. Oskardmay palpates the cervical spine to determine if potential irritation at this level influences thump pain. Spine irritation arising from vertebral subluxation and inflammation, tight neck and shoulder muscles, herniated discs, or other factors will pressure the nerves and affect pain and strength in the thumb and surrounding tissues. Dr. Oskardmay uses chiropractic adjustment to correct the vertebral imbalance. By applying specific movements to spinal segments using either an activator device or a hands-on maneuver, she works to improve nerve transmission to the thumb. Treatment of the spine sets the stage for further healing.

Additionally, she performs other orthopedic tests to isolate additional potential causes of thumb pain. Conditions such as thoracic outlet syndrome, carpel tunnel syndrome, brachial neuritis, tennis elbow, and others influence thumb pain. The pain may not start in the thumb, but it feels like it sometimes does. Proper treatment has to start with an appropriate diagnosis, and determining the cause of the problem helps her fix it. When shoulder, arm, elbow, or wrist issues cause thumb malfunction, she can address those issues using various treatment methods, including ice, heat, massage, electrical stimulation, gua sha and cupping massage, and acupuncture.

Sometimes overuse and injury are the cause of thumb pain. Dr. Oskardmay reviews patient history combined with examination to assess the likelihood of thumb injury stemming from these causes or a combination of the above.

In addition, she inquires and examines for acupuncture meridian channel imbalance which affects healing on many levels. For patients interested in acupuncture, she can utilize this ancient healing art to bring relief to the thumb and other joint pain. Acupuncture diagnosis considers several aspects one doesn’t usually consider when viewing health through the western lens. Dr. Oskardmay may inquire regarding sleep and eating habits, mood and seasonal stress level, types of allergies you experience, and many other things, in addition to a physical exam to identify where imbalance exists before she begins an acupuncture treatment. Many people enjoy the combined benefit of chiropractic and acupuncture, but let her know your preferences.

Thumb pain can stem from a variety of causes. Make sure your care provider understands the source before treating the symptom. Call our office today at (919) 929-1400, email us at schedule@acudocnc.com, or visit our website at acudocnc.com to get the care you need. In practice since 1995, providing trusted alternative medicine, Dr. Lisa Oskardmay is licensed in both acupuncture and chiropractic to give you the best support.

A Look Inside the Education Requirements for Chiropractors in North Carolina

Chiropractor Chapel Hill, NC

Many patients seeking alternative medicine healthcare recognize chiropractors as leaders in the field but still have questions about the qualifications of the doctor of chiropractic. Chiropractors are recognized as licensed physicians in the state of NC. Over the years, there has been some misinformation and misunderstanding about this profession. Still, as time passes and more patients receive care covered by their health insurance and provided by fully licensed chiropractors, they understand they are in safe hands. But what are the education requirements for chiropractors, and how do they compare to medical doctors?

Persons seeking to become chiropractic physicians in North Carolina must meet specific education requirements for chiropractors before they are allowed to assume the title of Doctor of Chiropractic. The North Carolina Board of Chiropractic Examiners, established in 1917 by the NC General Assembly, receives and reviews applications for potential chiropractors and promotes continuing education opportunities for the profession following licensure to benefit and protect the people of the state.

Education Requirements for Chiropractors 

Practitioners attend a four-year undergraduate program emphasizing science and pre-med courses before attending chiropractic school. This education provides a strong background for the future chiropractic physician who will enter one of the 20 accredited chiropractic schools in the United States today. The US Department of Education, through its Council on Chiropractic Education and Commission on Accreditation, authorizes the quality standards of training offered by chiropractic colleges.

Entrants to chiropractic colleges spend the next ten trimesters over three and a half to four years learning many of the same things medical doctors know: anatomy, physiology, histology, cell physiology, biochemistry, cardiology, digestion, metabolism, nutrition, microbiology, neuromusculoskeletal diagnosis, skeletal radiology, x-ray procedures and soft tissue radiology, pediatrics, gerontology, differential diagnosis, and patient care and management. Chiropractors spend additional time learning chiropractic philosophy and hands-on methods related to palpation and training in the adjustment technique. During their latter trimesters, students participate in student clinics under the auspices of a faculty clinician.

Chiropractors must pass the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners exam parts 1,2,3,4 covering science, clinical science, diagnostics, examination, patient care management, x-ray interpretation, diagnosis, chiropractic techniques, and case management. Successful applicants can start practice either on their own or do an internship or apprenticeship with another doctor.

Each year, chiropractors must undertake additional continuing education to maintain their licenses. Topics such as spinal pain management, plantar fasciitis treatment with exercise and orthotics, nutrition therapy, and clinical diagnosis in the digital age benefit practitioners. Other topics covered in continuing education might be Foot Levelers orthotics, headaches, or shoulder pain treatment presented by qualified trainers to supplement the doctor’s knowledge and keep her up to date. Chiropractic physicians receive documentation demonstrating their active licensure, and the NCBOCE maintains a dynamic list of licensed chiropractic doctors that anyone can check.

If you or a loved one is interested in choosing a chiropractor to provide healthcare, have confidence in your choice. Call us with more questions at (919) 929-1400 or or visit our website acudocnc.com to schedule an appointment. The chiropractic and acupuncture office of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay is here for you.

What to Expect Following Initial Treatment at Our Office

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

Whether you come to Acupractic Natural Healing Center in Chapel Hill for back pain, neck discomfort, headache, stress relief, or other symptoms, it is our goal that you experience some relief following your initial visit. Dr. Lisa Oskardmay uses alternative medicine treatments such as chiropractic and acupuncture to help your body heal itself from the first visit onward. While treatment results may not be dramatic, most people start feeling better after their initial experience at our office.

During the first encounter, Dr. Oskardmay palpates the back, neck, and other areas and performs other hands-on diagnostic procedures that give her and the patient insight into the cause of discomfort and pain. Rarely do some people feel a bit sore after the hands-on exam and initial treatment, and this discomfort is short-lived, and people come to understand the connection between pain and its source in new ways. This experience is healing for many, and most patients relate improved sleep even after their experience with alternative medicine at Acupractic Natural Healing Center.

Dr. Oskardmay generally provides patients with self-care exercises, nutrition advice, and other take-home activities from the first visit. Patients who keep track of and strive to follow the suggestions find results more quickly. She provides tailored treatments and home self-care suggestions for each person because each person is unique and has obstacles to healing. Sometimes she advises patients to stretch a certain way or to avoid specific movements or other activities to support recovery. She may recommend patients include or even eliminate certain foods or even vitamins to enhance better digestion, sleep, and overall well-being. If you experience worsening symptoms, discomfort, or just have questions about anything, let us know before your next visit, if possible. Call at (919) 929-1400 or email us your questions or concerns anytime at schedule@acudocnc.com.

A licensed chiropractic physician and acupuncturist serving the Triangle community since 1995, Dr. Oskardmay enjoys helping people start feeling better from day 1. She believes that listening to each person’s health journey and the story is the first step on that voyage. From the start, she strives to understand what each person needs to feel better and help provide that healing environment. Call us today at (919) 929-1400, email us at schedule@acudocnc.com or visit our website at acudocnc.com to schedule your appointment today.

A Treatment Plan for Chiropractic and Acupuncture Care to Support Treatment Goals

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

Following the initial examination at Acupractic Natural Healing Center, Dr. Oskardmay usually suggests a series of treatments to support patient improvement. Patients who devote time and energy to following a treatment plan for chiropractic and acupuncture achieve better treatment outcomes than those who are unable to return for care at the suggested frequency.

Like healthcare in other healthcare facilities- medical care, dental care, physical therapy center, Urgent Care, and others, doctors and providers prescribe follow-up care. A medical doctor will prescribe medications that a patient takes every day for a while, and a dentist will prescribe tooth repair procedures that can take days to weeks to years. A physical therapist requires repeated treatments to increase pain-free range of motion over time, weeks, and months. Even an Emergency Room or Urgent Care facility suggests follow-up care for patients after the initial emergency visit.

Healthcare takes time because healing occurs in-between visits. Healing practitioners of all types make changes, and the body and mind of each patient incorporate these changes over time, growing into an improved state of being. Doctors and other healthcare practitioners are patient and strive to understand each person’s unique needs and healing limitations. They schedule follow-up visits to see how the patient accommodates care, adjust treatment regimens, apply new or the same procedures, and prescribe the subsequent follow-up until the doctor and patient are satisfied. Once treatment goals are met, patients enter the maintenance care phase, at which point they return less frequently or even call for a next appointment as needed.

Treatment Plan for Chiropractic and Acupuncture Care to Meet Your Needs

At the Chapel Hill chiropractic and acupuncture offices of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay, we offer patients treatment plans that meet their needs and healing goals. Each patient receives the best care possible, and improvements happen faster when patients follow instructions, including coming in for scheduled visits. Dr. Oskardmay informs each patient approximately how much time to expect before seeing results. Most patients benefit from a treatment plan consisting of several visits a week for two weeks, then lessening frequency for another few weeks until maintenance care begins. Treatment may include chiropractic and acupuncture services or chiropractic or acupuncture at each treatment session. Each treatment lasts between 30 and 45 and provides consultation with the doctor and therapeutic applications, including massage, exercise, and lifestyle coaching. Scheduled periodic examinations add 15″ or so. Our front desk staff generally schedules a few follow-up visits for flexibility and to ensure patients get the care they need. Our automatic system sends out reminders via text or email for each scheduled visit; please refer to cancellation policies to change or cancel scheduled appointments.

Treatment plans allow us to help a patient heal in a timely fashion. Spreading healing visits out too far apart does not allow treatment benefits to building up adequately to achieve treatment goals. Please let us know if a patient is interested in maintenance care instead of health improvement care. We are here for you!

To schedule an appointment, call us at 919-929-1400 or email us at schedule@acudocnc.com 24 hours a day. Provide your name, number, and treatment needs, and someone from our office will respond in a timely fashion. Visit us on the web anytime to learn more: acudocnc.com.

Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics Usage Linked to Cartilage Weakness

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, the chiropractic and acupuncture healthcare clinics of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay in Chapel Hill, we do a complete exam before treatment. Part of the exam is getting a list of current medications. Dr. Oskardmay needs to know which drugs a person takes because sometimes medications have side effects that can affect one’s health and even impact the treatment plan at our office. Fluoroquinolone antibiotics are popular medications with crucial health implications we discuss here. Germs and viruses abound in everyone’s world, and each of us needs to use caution in our choice of healing method to deal with them because sometimes the cure is worse than the illness. Read more to learn about fluoroquinolone antibiotics and cartilage weakness.

What are Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics?

Fluoroquinolones are antibiotics with broad-spectrum applicability; MDs prescribe these drugs for various health problems: cold, flu, sinusitis, other infections. The drugs are effective, hence their popularity. Nonetheless, fluoroquinolones also have problematic side effects, one of which is newly appreciated in the literature and relates to the destruction of cartilage in various body areas. Most people – patients and providers alike, are unaware of this side effect, despite FDA concerns and ‘black box’ designations warning providers to limit the usage of F antibiotics.

Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics and Cartilage Weakness

Some areas where we see cartilage weakness affect health include abdominal aorta resulting in the aneurysm, Achilles tendon resulting in Achilles tendonitis, and possibly even cervical ligament resulting in neck pain and other conditions. This latter concerning fact can relate to the prevalence of neck pain and instability, shoulder aches, cervical disc degeneration, cervical nerve root compression, resulting neuropathy, elbow tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other conditions related to neck cartilage. The harmful effect of fluoroquinolones antibiotics on cartilage impacts the body in many different ways.

The way fluoroquinolone antibiotics destroy cartilage appears to be related to the nutrition of this vital structure. Immediately following the use of this drug, cartilage weakness may begin. After one stops use of the antibiotic, healing begins. The body is a fantastic thing, and each of us can heal from injury and disease. Dr. Oskardmay provides chiropractic adjustment, massage, acupuncture, and other techniques to restore movement and nutrition to injured cartilage, which helps to facilitate healing on many levels.

Medications have the potential to change the body in good ways and unintended negative ways. Americans utilize medications more than any other industrialized country in the world. Patients can visit the website drugs.com to review the side effects of F antibiotics and other drugs. Dr. Oskardmay uses natural healing methods to help patients reduce their need for and use of medications. The average patient over the age of 65 is on five or more drugs, suffering from a condition known as ‘polypharmacy’. The harmful effect of Fluoroquinolones antibiotics on cartilage is just one negative side effect of medications. Call (919) 929-1400, email schedule@acudocnc.com, or visit our website at acudocnc.com to see how natural healing methods can help you. Located just 1 mile off 1-40 in Chapel Hill, we look forward to assisting you.

What Causes Right-Sided Body Pain and How to Treat It?

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

Many patients experience one-sided stomach aches and pain, and other symptoms. When symptoms predominantly afflict the right side of one’s body, this can suggest that we regard certain internal conditions that relate to the right laterality. This is partly due to the location of specific organs and connected referral patterns. At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, the chiropractic and acupuncture offices of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay, Dr. Oskardmay utilizes palpation and other diagnostic techniques to determine the cause of pain and then treats appropriately.

Right-sided upper abdominal pain can indicate an ulcer, especially if dull burning pain is bloating, burping, poor appetite, and weight loss. Dr. Oskardmay will ask about bacterial infections and NSAID usage, which can cause peptic ulcers. She may suggest alternative treatments, including specific dietary changes to alleviate stomach pain. Additionally, she will adjust spinal segments related to the stomach to improve nerve input and nutrition to vital areas and suggest exercises to improve digestion. Acupuncture treatment restores qi flow to stagnant meridians and organs to support overall body wellness and reduce the need for NSAIDs.

Lower abdominal pain on the right side can indicate appendicitis, a medical condition that frequently requires emergency surgery to remove the inflamed appendix before it ruptures. A hallmark of appendicitis is fever; we recommend that patients with lower right-sided abdominal pain and a fever check with their medical doctors as soon as possible.

One other common cause of lower right-sided abdominal pain is IBS or irritable bowel syndrome, especially if GI symptoms such as bloating, gassiness, and a change in bowel habits accompany the pain. Dr. Oskardmay will palpate the abdominal area and inquire regarding digestion symptoms to reach a diagnosis. While it may take a further medical examination to differentiate between IBS and Crohns, Ulcerative Colitis, and other conditions, right-sided lower abdominal pain frequently indicates IBS. Dr. Oskardmay can help patients improve IBS symptoms using nutrition and exercise prescriptions and chiropractic adjustment to the back to reduce muscle tightness and improve nerve flow to the small and large intestines. She also provides acupuncture treatment to balance yin and yang qi flow along the involved channels to relax the body and mind to improve overall health.

The right side of the body also connects with the liver and gall bladder meridians, or wood channel in Chinese medicine. Pain in the right side of the twelfth rib area, near the physical liver and gallbladder nestled in its lobes, suggests wood channel imbalance. Specific areas on the foot along the wood yin channel also indicate an imbalance in this crucial pathway. Dr. Oskardmay will assess particular areas to help you understand the underlying cause of pain and make treatment suggestions to help you achieve better health. Using chiropractic and acupuncture to improve nerve and qi flow, she can help reduce pain and prevent worsening symptoms. When needed, she will refer patients to other providers.

At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, Dr. Oskardmay strives to understand the cause of one-sided body aches and pains to provide the best care. Call 919-929-1400, visit our website at acudocnc.com, or email schedule@acudocnc.com today to schedule an appointment or learn more.

 

Health Saving Accounts (HSA) Cover Chiropractic and Acupuncture

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

According to IRS Publication 502 (Publication 502 (2021) ‘Medical and Dental Expenses |Internal Revenue Service’ (irs.gov), both chiropractic and acupuncture are included for Health Savings Accounts (HSA) reimbursements. Accordingly, people can use their HSAs to pay for chiropractic or acupuncture services, a welcome benefit, and a tax break for the millions of Americans seeking additional ways to pay for needed care.

At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, we strive to help each patient understand how to use their insurance and health savings account benefits to make the most of their available resources. Knowledge and understanding reduce stress and improve overall patient satisfaction. Patients can use their HSA accounts to pay for copays, deductibles, or uncovered services if they like. Their HSA account is just like a credit card with a specific balance available for many people. Combining the tax-advantaged savings power of an HSA with a standard insurance account helps many people use chiropractic and acupuncture, and many other medically necessary treatments.

Options for Using Your HSA to Cover Chiropractic and Acupuncture Services

One can use HSA accounts to pay for services covered by insurance and chiropractic and acupuncture services not covered by their insurance at our office. We participate with many popular insurance plans, including United Health Care, UMR, Cigna, BlueCross BlueShield, Federal BCBS, Aetna, Humana, Medcost, Medicare, and others. Because Dr. Oskardmay is a licensed chiropractic physician, most plans cover chiropractic services and, increasingly, cover acupuncture at our office since Dr. Oskardmay is also a licensed acupuncturist. Choosing to use your HSA account to pay for the portion of care not covered by insurance is a smart move because it magnifies your benefits. Additionally, we do the billing for you and only collect our ‘Participating Provider’ agreed upon amounts from your HSA plus any noncovered fees disclosed to you in advance.

Dr. Lisa Oskardmay offers chiropractic and acupuncture to help Triangle patients with back pain, neck pain, headaches, stress, shoulder discomfort, knee trouble, plantar fasciitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and many other conditions. Alternative medicine works because treatment helps the body heal itself naturally, whether used in conjunction with other medical therapies or not. Dr. Oskardmay also provides massage and health counseling at every visit- HSA included services. Additional services we provide as part of a treatment plan may consist of: cupping massage, auriculotherapy, exercise prescription, nutrition and weight control counseling, and physical therapy adjunctive therapies.

Call today at (919) 929-1400 or email us at schedule@acudocnc.com to learn more about how complementary and alternative medical healthcare can help you achieve your healthcare goals and see how you can use your insurance and HSA benefits to pay for needed care. Check out our patient reviews to see what other Durham, Chapel Hill, and surrounding community residents have to say about Acupractic Natural Healing Center, serving the Triangle since 1995.

 

Does Chiropractic Care Help You Lose Weight?

Chiropractor Chapel Hill, NC

Losing weight can be difficult. Shedding pounds can be difficult for many reasons. Age, genetics, metabolism, stress and lifestyle are just a few of the confounding factors. Ads proclaiming the latest quick weight loss plan are confusing, and some are dangerous. Does chiropractic care help you lose weight? Read on to learn more.

Fortunately, chiropractors like Dr. Lisa Oskardmay in Chapel Hill are available to help safely guide you as you strive to get back to healthy weight. A natural health provider of chiropractic and acupuncture since 1995, Dr. Oskardmay coaches patients in how to use commonsense weight loss strategies. She specializes in overall body functioning from the first visit so if weight loss is your goal, she can help you. Combining chiropractic care to improve the spine, nervous system and posture, she helps to restore nerve flow to digestive organs, muscles and the brain itself. She provides massage and other physical modalities to muscles and ligaments to keep these crucial components pain free, supporting movement and muscle building activities that enhance the metabolism. Trained in nutrition science, Dr. Oskardmay has a special interest in using foods to heal the body naturally; she can help you make healthy choices that support weight loss.

Chiropractic Care and Weight Loss

Good metabolism supports proper blood sugar control and a healthy weight. Posture impacts metabolism because the bent forward position hinders respiration, dampens mood, and increases inflammation and pain. When one doesn’t breathe properly, moves in a sluggish manner and has elevated inflammatory markers, this affects stress and cortisol. Does chiropractic care help you lose weight? Chiropractic care at our office can help patients stand taller with less pain and better lung excursion, all factors which support better overall health, all factors that influence weight loss.

The chiropractic adjustment helps muscles function better overall. Muscles work better when nerve flow to the muscle is good. Muscles work better when there is less pain and inflammation inhibiting joint movement. Also, proper relaxation prior to using a muscle aids in overall performance. By providing specific chiropractic adjustments to impact vertebral subluxations, Dr. Oskardmay restores joint fixation and impeded nerve flow, and reduces muscle and ligament pain. She provides appropriate exercises and stretches to assist in muscle strength building, as well.

Additionally, sometimes people don’t realize that sleeping a good 7-8 hours a night is a necessary step to reduce stress and improve BMI. Getting adequate restorative sleep is crucial to regain a healthy metabolism. Different factors related to good sleep can also include snoring, pain at night, stress and anxiety. Nutritional factors can impede sleep, as well, and eating the wrong foods at the wrong time can make sleep difficult. Using chiropractic and acupuncture techniques Dr. Oskardmay can help improve the issues that affect healthy sleep patterns to help patients regain restorative, supportive sleep.

Call (919) 929-1400, email schedule@acudocnc.com or visit our website acudocnc.com to schedule an appointment to learn how natural chiropractic and acupuncture healthcare can help you achieve a healthy weight in the new year and beyond. Located in Chapel Hill just off I-40 and Durham, we look forward to helping you as we have helped thousands since 1995. We can help answer questions about how chiropractic and acupuncture care can help you lose weight or achieve other health goals, and also available to assist you with questions about how to use your health insurance at our office.

Chiropractic Care for Sciatica

Chiropractor Chapel Hill, NC

Whether your back pain is on the left side or the right side, the condition known as sciatica impairs movement and exercises. Lasting, on average, 4-6 weeks or longer, episodes of sciatica can also impair restorative sleep. Caused by irritating pressure on the lumbar spine nerves from the backbones themselves or compression and inflammation along the sciatic nerve path, sciatica afflicts millions of persons in this country each year. Chiropractic care for sciatica with Dr. Lisa Oskardmay DC, LAc at Acupractic Natural Healing Center relieves many from this disabling condition where medications, surgery, and other treatments haven’t worked.

chiropractic care for sciatica

What is the Sciatic Nerve?

The sciatic nerve consists of portions of the lower lumbar spine levels L345 and travels from the low back to the back of the thigh, knee, calf, and ankle. Irritation of this nerve along any portion of this pathway may cause sciatica symptoms, which range from one-sided pain, tingling, or numbness in the hip, back of the leg, foot or toes. There may be a weakness in the hip, thigh, calf, or foot muscles, which may indicate a progression of the ailment. Using hands-on palpation, detailed health history, and orthopedic testing, Dr. Oskardmay evaluates each patient to determine the cause and best treatment for each person individually. If x-rays are required, we can order those, as well.

Causes of Sciatica

Common causes of sciatica include back injury, vertebral spinal stenosis (aka vertebral canal narrowing), disc problems such as herniated discs, or spondylolisthesis (aka vertebral body slippage). Dr. Oskardmay uses chiropractic adjustment, acupuncture, and massage to help with vertebral issues. She also helps patients understand how their home activities may affect their sciatic symptoms. Contributing factors include sitting a lot, lifting heavy objects, wearing tight clothing, using poor posture, weight gain, not exercising. Dr. Oskardmay provides helpful exercises and stretches to help and other beneficial suggestions that do not include drugs, injections, or surgery.

Chiropractic Care for Sciatica Offers Terrific Benefits

Chiropractic care offers terrific benefits for many patients suffering from sciatica. Nonetheless, we advise patients to seek medical care if symptoms persist longer than 4-6 weeks despite care or appear to be worsening. Many patients find that conservative chiropractic care is effective at helping them relieve their pain without medical interventions. Other therapies Dr. Oskardmay can provide include acupuncture, massage, and other physical modalities such as TENS, heat, cold, and auriculotherapy, treatment for sciatica at Acupractic Natural Healing Center helps many.

Medical sciatica approaches include pain killers and muscle relaxers, steroid injections, physical therapy, and possibly surgery, depending on the cause. Conservative, complementary, and alternative medical practices offered at our office provide patients with natural options and potentially avoid surgery or drug therapies that may have adverse side effects.

Call today to schedule your care appointment at (919) 929-1400, or email schedule@acudocnc.com, or visit us online anytime at acudocnc.com to learn more about natural healing methods for sciatica and other health conditions and request an appointment. Happy New Year!

Chiropractic and Acupuncture Alternative Medicine vs. Medications for Back Pain

Chiropractor and Acupuncturist Chapel Hill, NC

25% of Americans living in the US have had back pain in the last three months. Many Americans turn to medications to temporarily relieve their symptoms and, hopefully, provide an opportunity for patients to use other, more lasting, and potentially healing treatments such as PT, chiropractic, acupuncture, and others. Trouble arises, however, when patients utilize medications to cover up symptoms without taking the necessary steps to improve their health in other ways. Drugs invariably have side effects, and some can cause lasting problems. At Acupractic Natural Healing Center, the chiropractic and acupuncture alternative medicine offices of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay in Chapel Hill, we strive to help patients reduce pain and heal naturally without drugs.

Mild over-the-counter analgesics such as NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) include commonly used ibuprofen and naproxen (e.g., Motrin and Aleve). These block pain signals but do little to heal the cause of the inflammation that causes pain. Stronger NSAIDs available by prescription only include celecoxib, nabumetone, diclofenac, and meloxicam (e.g., Celebrex, Relafen, Mobic, and Voltaren). Patients should pay close attention to all medication instructions, especially regarding dosage – using any pain medication for more than a few months may lead to intolerance and dependence and increase health risks. For instance, NSAIDs can cause gastroinflammatory problems, liver damage, kidney damage, and ulcers. Avoid alcohol usage with these drugs. Another popular OTC analgesic drug is acetaminophen. While not an NSAID, this product has similar pain-relieving qualities and side effects.

Some patients apply NSAID cremes or patches over painful areas that work similarly to oral NSAIDs with similar side effects. Other pain patches and cremes that do not appear to have negative health consequences include eucalyptus oil, menthol, camphor, and capsaicin—similarly, the application of heat or cold benefits many.

Sometimes a person’s medical doctor will prescribe a muscle relaxant such as Flexeril, Soma, Baclofen, or Zanaflex to relax tight muscles following an acute injury temporarily. Taken for a short duration, medications may help a patient get back to life activities more readily. Side effects for muscle relaxants include drowsiness, and patients need to avoid operating heavy machinery while on these sedating muscle relaxers.

The next level of pain control for back pain is the opiate and other narcotics. These potent medications, such as codeine and morphine, effectively block the pain signals between injured areas and the brain. Used for the short term, these medications may help keep the pain level down so that patients can resume some function. Nonetheless, the side effects of opiates are numerous, and dependence is a huge problem confronting our nation. Additionally, some studies show that long-term usage of opiates makes the pain worse.

Chiropractic and Acupuncture Alternative Medicine

At our chiropractic and alternative medicine healthcare center, Dr. Oskardmay strives to help people get back to a pain-free lifestyle using non-drug methods, including chiropractic, acupuncture, and massage. Combined with electrostimulation, exercise, and other physical therapies, she helps patients heal on many levels to improve function, posture, and balance. She also discusses nutrition and herbal remedies to support healing at home.

For a non-drug approach to healthcare, contact the natural medicine office of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay, where, since 1995, she has helped Triangle residents of all ages get back to health. Call us at 919-929-1400 or visit us on the web at acudocnc.com 24 hours a day to learn more and schedule your appointment.