Pregnant Women and Chiropractic care

-Should pregnant women receive chiropractic care? YES

-Is it safe for women to get adjusted while pregnant? Absolutely!!! There are no known contraindications to chiropractic spinal and pelvic adjustments throughout pregnancy!

I just got back from Overland Park, Kansas this past weekend after attending yet another wonderful ICPA (International Chiropractic Pediatric Association) seminar! This particular seminar was focused on Webster Technique and its application in pregnant women. I wanted to share some of the amazing things I learned!

First off… What is Webster technique? Webster technique is a technique that provides us with a very specific analysis of the pelvis, sacrum and round ligaments of the uterus. With this analysis we are able to determine the proper adjustments to make for optimum correction.

Why is this technique wonderful for women who are pregnant?

The uterus has ligaments that are connected to the sacrum and ligaments that come around front and connect to the stomach. Your baby lives in your uterus. When the sacrum is subluxated or out of place it can pull on the uterosacral ligaments that are attached to it putting tension on your uterus, or your babies temporary home. Not only can this cause structural stress on the mothers pelvis and uterus but it can also cause interference in the mothers nervous system.

What are the benefits of Webster Technique adjustments for the mother?

  • Prepares the pelvis for an easier pregnancy and birth by creating a state of balance in pelvic bony structures, muscles and ligaments.
  • Removes tension/torsion of the ligaments that support the uterus thus potentially reducing aberrant tension to the woman’s uterus.
  • Reduces interference to the mother’s vital nervous system which controls and co-ordinates all her systems and functions.
  • By improving maternal function we are decreasing the potential for unnecessary intervention.

What are the benefits for the infant?

  • Reduces interference to the mother’s nervous system allowing for better baby development.
  • Pelvic balance allows the baby greater room to develop without restrictions to its forming cranium, spine and other skeletal structures.
  • Offers the baby the room to move into the best possible position for birth.
  • With proper fetal positioning, there is a significant decrease in dystocia and the resulting birth trauma caused by intervention.

*All infant benefits come from adjusting and treating the MOTHER, we do not treat the baby in utero as that is obstetrics.

One in 4 babies are delivered via C-section, some hospitals reporting as high as 1 in 2… when did birth become a medical procedure instead of a normal and NATURAL process?

Talk to your chiropractor about how adjustments can help. If we can avoid an unnecessary C-section why wouldn’t we? It’s better for the baby and the mother if a natural vaginal birth occurs. 

What questions do you have?? 

Email me directly at DrNicole@yostfamilychiropractic.com and don’t forget to like us on facebook to stay updated on all of our blogs, videos and announcements!! We have a lot of wonderful things to share with everyone 🙂

Pic2Dr. Nicole Davis with Yost Family Chiropractic in Urbandale, Iowa

Dr. Nicole Davis graduated from Logan University with not only her Doctorate in Chiropractic but her Bachelors in Life Sciences. After working with hundreds of clients a week in a busy Ohio Chiropractic clinic, she decided to head home to Des Moines to be closer to her family.  She currently specializes in family wellness care with advanced training in pediatric and pregnancy care, working alongside 2 other doctors in the only Wellness Center in Iowa to offer Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Specialized Pediatric and Pregnancy Care as well as Functional Medicine.  She loves spending time with family, friends and her dog, Maci. She is here to serve her community with love, support and enthusiasm.

Are You Drinking Enough Water?

Who knows if they drink enough water every day?

A lot of times, we are not – even though it feels like we drink plenty! They say you should drink half of your body weight in ounces every day. Even more if you are active! So why do we need so much water? And what happens to our bodies when we don’t get enough water?

Did you know? Our bodies are made up of about 75% water! Throughout each day we lose water through breathing, sweating and digestion so we need to replenish the water we lose. Here’s why!

  • Water Increases Energy & Relieves Fatigue: Your brain is made up of about 90% water and drinking it helps you think, focus, concentrate better and be more alert. And bonus points! Your energy levels will be boosted! Dehydration is actually one of the top causes of severe fatigue. If your feeling tired all day long and don’t seem to have the energy to exercise or do much of anything, think about how much water you are drinking!
  • Water Promotes Weight Loss: It removes by-products of fat, raises your metabolism and has zero calories! Consuming low levels of water actually slows protein synthesis—the muscle building function in your body. So, if you want to burn fat and add muscle, you need to be fully hydrated! Also, staying hydrated ensures that you don’t confuse thirst for hunger which can cause you to overeat and gain more weight.
  • Water Flushes Out Toxins: Your kidneys actually act as filters – keeps the “good stuff” and flushes out the “bad stuff”. Your body gets rid of waste through sweat and urination which reduces the risk of kidney stones, UTI’s (urinary tract infections) and even high blood pressure.
  • Water Improves Skin Complexion: Without adequate water intake, your skin appears duller, and causes wrinkles and pores to be more prominent. This may be because water plumps up the skin, causing wrinkles and pores to, more or less, get “filled in”. When skin is hydrated, plump, and elastic, it’s less likely to crack and let in external particles that can cause irritations and blemishes. What a great natural anti-aging treatment!
  • Water Maintains Regularity: It aids in digestion as water is essential to digest your food and prevent constipation. If you’re dehydrated, your body won’t be able to break down foods as effectively as it normally does.
  • Water Boosts the Immune System: Like I said above, water flushes out toxins in the body to help fight of illness. It does this through the lymphatic system, which is made up of mostly water. It also carries immune cells throughout the body to help defend against infections. If you aren’t getting enough water, toxins will accumulate and immune cells won’t be delivered to the areas of the body where they’re needed, causing illness.
  • Water is a Natural Pain and Headache Remedy: It helps relieve and prevent headaches, back pain and generalized pain, which are commonly caused by dehydration and inflammation. Water will flush out the toxins causing inflammation.
  • Water Helps Blood Circulation: Water is a necessary ingredient for proper blood flow in the body. Drinking more water raises oxygen levels in your bloodstream, leading to better circulation and improved overall health. Good blood flow can help increase your energy levels and it flushes out the “bad” fats decreasing cholesterol levels.
  • Water Prevents Cramps & Sprains: Proper hydration helps keep joints lubricated and muscles more elastic so joint pain and muscle spasms are less likely. And since I am chiropractor, I have to mention that water is also great for keeping your intervertebral discs (discs in your spine) hydrated (since your discs are made up of about 80% water) preventing degeneration!

Take a look at the chart below to see how dehydration affects your body.

Dehydration pic

Now you have plenty of reasons to start drinking plenty of water! Your body will thank you!

Dr. Jess

 

2Dr. Jessica Stensland is a busy family wellness Chiropractor in Urbandale, Iowa. She spends her weeks taking care of dozens of families.  Not only does Dr. Jessica specialize in pediatric and pregnancy chiropractic care, but she’s a board certified Acupuncturist.  Dr. Jessica believes that a healthier community means taking care of all ages.   She is a Minnesota native and enjoys seeing family and friends in her free time, in addition to staying active and reading the many books she has on her kindle.

Chronic Inflammation? Depression? Digestive complaints?

What do these and so many more have in common?? Low Vagal tone.

Let me step back for minute and explain what that means. We have 2 parts to our nervous system.. our sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight.. go go go) and our parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest). In order to function properly and at our optimum level these two must be balanced.

The vagus nerve, which determines vagal tone, is part of our parasympathetic nervous system. It is the longest nerve in the body which originates in the brain as cranial nerve ten, travels down the from the neck and then passes around the digestive system, liver, spleen, pancreas, heart and lungs.

The tone of the vagus nerve (vagal tone) is key to activating the parasympathetic nervous system. Vagal tone is measured by tracking your heart-rate alongside your breathing rate. Your heart-rate speeds up a little when you breathe in, and slows down a little when you breathe out. The bigger the difference between your inhalation heart-rate and your exhalation heart-rate, the higher your vagal tone. Higher vagal tone means that your body can relax faster after stress, and who doesn’t want that!?

High vagal tone improves the function of not just one but many body systems! Causing better blood sugar regulation, reduced risk of stroke and cardiovascular disease, lower blood pressure, improved digestion via better production of stomach basic and digestive enzymes, and reduced migraines. Higher vagal tone is also associated with better mood, less anxiety and more stress resilience. One of the most interesting roles the vagus nerve has is that it reads the gut microbiome and initiates a response to control inflammation based on whether or not it detects good or bad organisms. In this way, the gut microbiome can have an affect on your mood, stress levels and overall inflammation. Another way to support this gut microbiome for these benefits is through probiotic supplementation!

Low vagal tone is associated with cardiovascular conditions and strokes, depression, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, cognitive impairment, and much higher rates of inflammatory conditions. Inflammatory conditions include all autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, endometriosis, autoimmune thyroid conditions, lupus and more).

So how can we raise this vagal tone that seems to cause so many problems…

  • Get Adjusted! Adjustments help to balance out the nervous system (sympathetic and parasympathetic) and remove any interference that may be present in the pathway from the brain to the rest of the body.
  • Slow, rhythmic, diaphragmatic breathing. Breathing from your diaphragm, rather than shallowly from the top of the lungs stimulates and tones the vagus nerve.
  • Humming. Since the vagus nerve is connected to the vocal cords, humming mechanically stimulates it. You can hum a song, or even better repeat the sound ‘OM’.
  • Speaking. Similarly speaking is helpful for vagal tone, due to the connection to the vocal cords.
  • Washing your face with cold water. The mechanism her is not known, but cold water on your face stimulates the vagus nerve.
  • Meditation, especially loving kindness meditation which promotes feelings of goodwill towards yourself and others. A 2010 study by Barbara Fredrickson and Bethany Kik found that increasing positive emotions led to increased social closeness, and an improvement in vagal tone.
  • Balancing the gut microbiome. The presence of healthy bacteria in the gut creates a positive feedback loop through the vagus nerve, increasing its tone.
  • AND– I learned this past weekend at my ICPA Webster Technique seminar that looking into a babies eye and connecting with them can help repair and raise vagal tone.. how cool is that!!! 

This list is pretty doable to receive the benefits! Don’t have a family Chiropractor for your adjustments yet?? No problem 🙂 Call us here at YFC 515-278-YOST (9678) and make an appointment today 🙂

Pic2Dr. Nicole Davis

Dr. Nicole Davis graduated from Logan University with not only her Doctorate in Chiropractic but her Bachelors in Life Sciences. After working with hundreds of clients a week in a busy Ohio Chiropractic clinic, she decided to head home to Des Moines to be closer to her family.  She currently specializes in family wellness care with advanced training in pediatric and pregnancy care, working alongside 2 other doctors in the only Wellness Center in Iowa to offer Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Specialized Pediatric and Pregnancy Care as well as Functional Medicine.  She loves spending time with family, friends and her dog, Maci. She is here to serve her community with love, support and enthusiasm.

How Inflammation Affects Your Body

Hello all!

There is a lot of buzz going around about inflammation: what causes it, what diseases and conditions it can lead to and its effects on the body. So let’s talk about it!

Did you know that inflammation actually starts in your gut? Or how about that 80% of your immune system is in your gut? So it makes sense that inflammation is actually an immune response.

A little physiology lesson for today…

Your gut is made up of a semi-permeable lining and its amount of permeability actually fluctuates in response to an assortment of chemically mediated conditions. For example, increased stress or changes in your thyroid hormone levels causes your intestinal lining to be more permeable. When the lining becomes more permeable partially undigested food, toxins, viruses, yeast, and bacteria have the chance to pass through the intestine and enter the bloodstream, which is known as leaky gut syndrome.

When the intestinal lining is repeatedly damaged due to leaky gut syndrome, digestion is eventually impaired and absorption of nutrients is negatively affected. As more exposure occurs, your body initiates an attack on these foreign invaders. It responds with inflammation, allergic reactions, and other symptoms we relate to a variety of diseases.

Since your immune system can work too hard, these inflammatory triggers are cycled continuously through your blood where they affect nerves, organs, connective tissues, joints, and muscles. Is it easy to see and understand how some diseases and conditions can develop?

There are many diseases that are caused by inflammation. Just to name a few…

  • Allergies and Asthma
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Autism
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis

Check out this chart to see how inflammation can affect your body!

infographic031

The usual treatment to inflammation is to generally suppress the immune system with immune suppressive agents or sometimes steroids, which are designed to reduce inflammation but neither resolves the underlying cause. Inflammation is an essential process for normal repairs of the body to occur. It becomes a problem when the regulation of inflammation is not controlled and then we have an increased risk of disease occurring.

The inflammatory process that takes place by any inflammatory trigger (diet, medications, infections, stress, hormonal, neurological, or metabolic) can break down intestinal permeability and allows for leaky gut syndrome to occur, and thus can lead to acute and chronic diseases.

You can start making changes today to naturally decrease your inflammation and start feeling like your old self!

  1. Take Probiotics to help support a healthy gut
  2. Eat a clean and healthy diet
  3. Exercise
  4. Decrease stress
  5. Get more sleep

It’s never too late to start making a positive change to your health!

Dr. Jess

 

2Dr. Jessica Stensland is a busy family wellness Chiropractor in Urbandale, Iowa. She spends her weeks taking care of dozens of families.  Not only does Dr. Jessica specialize in pediatric and pregnancy chiropractic care, but she’s a board certified Acupuncturist.  Dr. Jessica believes that a healthier community means taking care of all ages.   She is a Minnesota native and enjoys seeing family and friends in her free time, in addition to staying active and reading the many books she has on her kindle.

Eating and Drinking too much sugar

Are you and/or your family consuming too much sugar? The answer is.. most likely.

Did you know that 3/4 of packaged and processed foods contain added refined sugar? And what’s worse is it can be listed under as many as 61 different names! So how do you really know how much sugar you and your family are actually consuming. It is so good to start young with healthy eating habits, including limiting the intake of refined sugar. Parents I encourage you to be as cautious as possible when grocery shopping for your children, and here is why.

  • 1/5 of 4-5 year-olds and 1/3 of 10-11 year-olds are overweight

Being overweight as a child increases the likelihood of becoming an overweight adult. Being overweight causes you to be prone to a wide range of life-threatening diseases such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and even some cancers. There are now 2.5 million people suffering from Type 2 diabetes, 90% of whom are overweight or obese.

Currently children are consuming 3 times the recommended amount of sugar. A 5 year old for example should only be consuming 19 grams (5 cubes) of sugar a day.. there are 5 cubes of sugar in just ONE small carton or pouch of juice. With just one beverage children hit their limits. Pop contains 9 cubes!! So you can see how easily sugar adds up in your child’s diet.. just through beverages alone! Along with causing weight gain that can lead to obesity sugar can also cause tooth decay. Your child’s well being will also suffer as they are more likely to be bullied, have low self esteem, and miss school due to more frequent illness.

Simple things like substituting water for sugary drinks such as juice and soda can make a huge difference. Also, staying away from processed and packaged food will help decrease the excess consumption of unwanted sugar. Stay on the perimeter of the grocery stores and try to choose as many whole and natural foods as possible! Chiropractors are not only trained in adjusting the spine but also in nutrition, don’t hesitate to ask your chiropractor what you can do along with getting your child’s spine checked to help your children get the proper nutrition they need!

Pic2Dr. Nicole Davis

Dr. Nicole Davis graduated from Logan University with not only her Doctorate in Chiropractic but her Bachelors in Life Sciences. After working with hundreds of clients a week in a busy Ohio Chiropractic clinic, she decided to head home to Des Moines to be closer to her family.  She currently specializes in family wellness care with advanced training in pediatric and pregnancy care, working alongside 2 other doctors in the only Wellness Center in Iowa to offer Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Specialized Pediatric and Pregnancy Care as well as Functional Medicine.  She loves spending time with family, friends and her dog, Maci. She is here to serve her community with love, support and enthusiasm.

Why Exercise Makes You Happy

Last week I talked about the effects that lack of sleep has on your body. I figured I would keep with the theme and talk about the effects exercise has on your body and how it makes you happier. Especially with the new year, it’s great to know that exercise is much more important for your health than just for losing weight. So start off the new year right and exercise to be happier!

When you workout, have you ever noticed that your mood changes and you feel great when you are done? That’s because of the effects exercise has on your body and your brain. There is actually a new term for it these days, the Happiness Effect.

Do you know how exercise can make you happier?

  • It releases happy chemicals into your brain.
    • It releases dopamine, which is a chemical that plays a role in happiness, and is a neurotransmitter in the brain that’s necessary for feelings of pleasure and happiness. Many studies suggest that as we age, we are constantly losing our stores of dopamine. What is the best way to increase your brain’s dopamine production? Exercise!
  • It makes you less stressed out.
    • Not only will working out ease stress in the short term by helping you sweat out the day’s worries, regular exercise will help you become less stressed out in the long term as well. When you exercise, you’re actually subjecting yourself to a low-level form of stress by raising your heart rate and triggering a burst of hormonal changes. When you exercise regularly, your body will eventually get better at handling the rest of life’s stressors. And less stress equals a happier, healthier life!
  • It energizes you.
    • Everyone has days when they just feel too tired to exercise, when working out is the last thing they want to do. But no matter how exhausted you are, do your best to muster up all the willpower you have (even if it’s just giving yourself a little pep talk to get off the couch!) and still work out , because more likely than not, you’ll feel more energized after your workout.
  • It boosts your confidence.
    • When you don’t feel good about your body or how you look, it’s all too easy to have low self-esteem. And that can have a negative effect on all areas of your life.
    • But when you start to exercise and see your body transform, that can quickly change. Because exercise will not only make you like how you look, it will also make you feel stronger and more confident. There’s nothing like a boost in confidence to increase overall happiness.
  • It eases anxiety.
    • If you suffer from anxiety, exercise may be an easy cure. Because recent studies on the effects of exercise show that in people suffering from anxiety, the immediate mood boost from exercise is followed by longer-term relief.
  • It fights insomnia.
    • Not only can regular exercise significantly improve your sleep quality, it can also give you energy that makes you want to get out of bed in the morning and do things.

 

Take a look at the chart below. It not only shows the Happiness Effect, but also how stress negatively affects the body too. It is crazy interesting what just exercising can do for your body, health, wellness and happiness!

So what are you waiting for?? Exercise and be happy!

Dr. Jess

Happiness Effect pic

 

2Dr. Jessica Stensland is a busy family wellness Chiropractor in Urbandale, Iowa. She spends her weeks taking care of dozens of families.  Not only does Dr. Jessica specialize in pediatric and pregnancy chiropractic care, but she’s a board certified Acupuncturist.  Dr. Jessica believes that a healthier community means taking care of all ages.   She is a Minnesota native and enjoys seeing family and friends in her free time, in addition to staying active and reading the many books she has on her kindle.

Why should I eat Avocados?

I see a lot of people everyday in our clinic who have pain and suffer from increased or chronic inflammation. Along with supplements you can also use food to help decrease inflammation in the body.. and guess what!? Avocados actually possess anti-inflammatory agents! 🙂 What are they ask….Pholyphenols and flavonoids 🙂 But that’s not all, Did you know they can also help with bad breath? How do they do this?? by helping to cleanse the intestines! Not only that but they also contain more potassium than a banana..14% compared to the 10% bananas contain. This is just crazy exciting stuff! 🙂

And get this! Avocados have 23% folate which lowers incidences of heart disease. Vitamin E, monounsaturated fats and glutathione are also good for the heart. Folate can lower the risks of having a stroke.

Folate is ALSO essential in the prevention of birth defects such as spina bifida and neural tube defect! All you women expecting get those avocados in your diet ASAP!

The list goes on and on…. BUT

Let’s take a look at all the wonderful vitamins and minerals avocados contain..

Vitamin B1
Vitamin B2
Vitamin B3
Vitamin B5
Vitamin B6
Vitamin B9
Vitamin C
Vitamin E
Vitamin K
Calcium
Iron
Magnesium
Manganese
Phosphorus
Sodium
Zinc

Wow!! I LOVE it. So why not add them to your daily diet!? Feel free to comment here or find us on Facebook at Yost Family Chiropractic and I would be thrilled to answer any questions you may have 🙂

Pic2Dr. Nicole Davis DC

Dr. Nicole Davis graduated from Logan University with not only her Doctorate in Chiropractic but her Bachelors in Life Sciences. After working with hundreds of clients a week in a busy Ohio Chiropractic clinic, she decided to head home to Des Moines to be closer to her family.  She currently specializes in family wellness care with advanced training in pediatric and pregnancy care, working alongside 2 other doctors in the only Wellness Center in Iowa to offer Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Specialized Pediatric and Pregnancy Care as well as Functional Medicine.  She loves spending time with family, friends and her dog, Maci. She is here to serve her community with love, support and enthusiasm.