Anatomy 101

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The spine is one of the most important parts our body. It has three main functions:

  • Protects the spinal cord
  • Gives the body structure and support
  • Allows us to move freely

The Bones and Joints

The spine is made of 33 bones called vertebra that are stacked one above each other. There are:

  • 7 cervical vertebra in the neck
  • 12 thoracic vertebra in the middle back
  • 5 lumbar vertebra in the low back.

The sacrum is a wedged shaped bone in the pelvis made of 5 fused vertebra. The tail end of the spine (literally) we have the coccyx made of 4 fused coccygeal vertebra. The vertebra are given names based on their position in the spine. L1 is the first lumbar vertebra. There are 2 bones that have special names because of their special function. The atlas (C1) holds up the head and the axis allows the head to rotate from side to side.

Bones and Joints

Here you can see 2 vertebra stacked on top of the other. 3 joints join the vertebra to each other. The large disc in the front is like a soft cushion and provides support and absorbs pressure. The disc has a poor blood supply and receives its nutrition via sucking the nutrients from the body when you move. Behind the disc there are 2 facet joints. The facet joints guide the movement of the vertebra and have a large supply of nerves that feed your brain with information about where your spine is and how it is moving. Your brain uses this information when it is deciding how your organs should function. Some amazing research by Dr. Akio Sato has been done in this field. This is why is it is so important to maintain the normal movement of your spine. Between the facet joints and the disc is a gap called the intervertebral foramen or the IVF for short. The spinal nerves exit the spinal canal through the IVF. There are a number of bumps on each vertebra. You can see the transverse and spinouts processes in the picture. The muscles and ligaments of the spine attach to these bumps.

The Ligaments

There are a number of ligaments that cross between two vertebra. The ligaments hold the bones together while still allowing the joints to move. Some of the ligaments cross the intervetebral foramen and reduce the space the spinal nerves have to exit the spinal canal. When there is joint restriction the ligaments can rub twist and squash the nerves reducing their ability to carry healthy information from the brain to the body or the body back to the brain. With age and lack of exercise the ligaments become shorter and harder, making the joints stiffer. In the long term tight and stiff ligaments pull on the bones and produce bone spurs. Exercise and adjustments to maximize the health of the ligaments will minimize the effects of osteoarthritis in the future.

The Muscles

The Muscles

here are multiple layers of muscles in the back. Some are for supporting our spine and are called postural muscles or core muscles others are for moving our spine and are called the prime movers. The muscles are arranged in different patterns to bend our spine forwards backwards, sideways and rotate to each side. Like all muscles of the body the spinal muscles require good exercise and stretching to maintain their health and the health of your spine.

The Nerves

The spinal cord is the information superhighway between your brain and your body. Without it you could not move any part of your body and your organs could not function. It is made of millions of nerves. The spinal cord is protected by the bony spinal canal formed by the vertebra that are stacked one on top of the other. It is also protected by the duramater, a tough covering around the cord. Between the duramater and the spinal cord is the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) The CSF is important for protection of the central nervous system (CNS), which includes the brain and the spinal cord and feeds the CNS with nutrients from the blood.

The Peripheral Nerves

The spinal nerves convey information between the central nervous system and the rest of the body. The spinal nerves exit the spinal canal through each of the intervertebral foramen between each pair of vertebra. Like the tributaries of a river the small spinal nerves form larger nerves, such as the sciatic nerve, which runs down the buttock into the leg. This is how your brain controls every single cell and organ in you body. The following chart describes which spinal nerves innervate (supply) which parts of the body. You will notice that all the body parts actually receive information from more than one spinal nerve and the nerves travel a great distance to get to the organ they are supplying. This is why the actual problem in the spinal can be a long way away from you feeling the problem.

Want to Understand Chiropractic?

Then be aware of these 7 principles:

Your body is under the control of the brain and nervous system as long as you are alive.

Your brain is protected by the skull, and your spinal cord is protected by the spinal column.

Spinal bones move out of normal alignment and interrupt your normal nerve flow.

This disruption of normal nerve flow is referred to as a vertebral subluxation.

It is vital to know that subluxations can be silent; causing problems long before symptoms occur.

Chiropractors find subluxations, and by preforming a spinal adjustment, facilitate a return of normal nerve supply.

Normal nerve supply results in a greater expression of LIFE for you!

*Based on an article by Robert Crystal, DC.

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Today is the last day to bring in your food donations. We here at SpineWise want to

thank everyone who was able to donate a food item for the St. Vincent de Paul

Thanksgiving food drive. We can’t hold a food drive without generous people like you!

So THANK YOU so much!!!

We will be holding a food drive for Christmas as well, so if you didn’t have a chance to

donate you can next month. Once we have that up and running we will let you all know.

Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful.

What are your plans for this Thanksgiving weekend? Dinner plans with the family? Do you have to travel?

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Whatever your plans may be we hope that you all get there safely. We hope that you have a great Thanksgiving weekend

with your family and/or friends. Be thankful for each other. We are all blessed to have each other.

Don’t forget to book your next adjustment 905-623-8388

Today is the day to start making changes. Why today you ask? Well why not today?

Have you been suffering from headaches, back pain, neck pain, anxiety and/or stress?

We can help you. We use the latest in technologies to get you faster results.

Visit our website today to see what all we help treat and how our services can work for you!

www.spinewise.ca

Give us a call to book your appointment 905-623-8388.

 

SpineWise is a busy multidisciplinary clinic downtown Bowmanville, Ontario.

We have been in business for over 2 decades helping the community of Bowmanville and surrounding areas.

We offer services such as chiropractic care, physiotherapy, registered massage therapy and chiropody.

We direct bill to most insurance companies, we accept MVA clients and WSIB clients as well.

SpineWise

98 King Street West Bowmanville, ON
L1C 1R2

Get Directions

Phone: 905-623-8388
Fax: 905-623-6282

What is a Registered Massage Therapist?

A Registered Massage Therapist is an individual who is registered with the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO) in accordance with the Regulated Health Professionals Act and the Massage Therapy Act. Only members of the CMTO are permitted to use the title of Registered Massage Therapist or Massage Therapist, or the designation of RMT or MT.

A Registered Massage Therapist:

  • Is registered with the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO)
  • Has completed competency-based education at a recognized school of massage therapy
  • Has successfully completed examinations to ensure that they have the necessary competencies to safely and effectively offer massage therapy care
  • Maintains their registration by participating in continuing education and a quality assurance program to ensure they maintain their high professional standards and quality of care
The College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO) is the regulatory body for Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs) in Ontario. They protect the public interest by ensuring the competency and quality of care provided by Massage Therapists. All RMTs in Ontario are required to be registered with the CMTO. Individuals who are not registered with the CMTO are not permitted to practice massage therapy in Ontario or call themselves Massage Therapists in Ontario.

What is Massage Therapy?

Massage therapy is the manipulation of soft tissues of the body including muscles, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joints. Massage therapy is a clinically-oriented healthcare option that helps alleviate the discomfort associated with every day occupational stresses, muscular over-use and many chronic pain conditions.
Massage therapy should only be provided by a Registered Massage Therapist (RMT). An RMT is a primary healthcare provider in Ontario and anyone may visit an RMT of their choice.
Massage therapy can be used as a treatment for both acute and chronic conditions. RMTs work with a wide variety of patients in the treatment of illness, injury rehabilitation and disability.
The services of an RMT are not covered under the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP); however, many extended health benefit plans will cover all or part of the services provided by an RMT. A referral or prescription is not required to visit an RMT, although some insurance companies may require this. Massage therapy treatments may also be reimbursed by automobile insurance companies, if the client was in a motor vehicle accident, or in the case of workplace injuries, by the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).

Benefits of Massage Therapy

Massage therapy treatments provided by a Registered Massage Therapist can offer significant benefits for a variety of conditions and for diverse patient populations. Whether you need to have a moment of relaxation, reduce muscle tension or attain relief from chronic pain, massage therapy can enhance your overall well-being. Massage therapy can help alleviate musculoskeletal disorders associated with everyday stress, muscular overuse, physical manifestation of mental distress and many persistent pain syndromes.
Massage therapy can be an important part of your health maintenance plan by:
  • Reducing or eliminating pain
  • Improving joint mobility
  • Improving lymphatic drainage
  • Reducing muscular tension
Massage therapy can treat both acute and chronic conditions. RMTs work with a wide variety of patients in the treatment of illness, injury, rehabilitation and disability.
Massage therapy can prove beneficial to many conditions, including but not limited to the following:
  • Anxiety and Depression
  • Arthritis
  • Asthma and Emphysema
  • Cancer
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Dislocations
  • Edema
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches
  • Inflammatory Conditions
  • Insomnia
  • Lymphoedema
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Muscle Tension and Spasm
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Post-Surgical Rehabilitation
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Pregnancy and Labor Support
  • Sciatica
  • Scoliosis
  • Sports Injuries
  • Strains and Sprains
  • Stress and Stress-Related Conditions
  • Stroke
  • Tendinitis
  • Whiplash
Massage therapy can also be used as part of a preventative care program. This includes sports training, injury prevention, ongoing stress management and more!
Your massage therapist will require an overall picture of your current health and a detailed health history in order to design a treatment plan that’s right for you. If a massage therapist determines that your condition would be better treated by another healthcare professional, they will make the appropriate referral.

Information provided by the RMTAO website

 

We at SpineWise have three RMT’s working in our office who are taking appointments. Give us a call to book your appointment at 905-623-8388

What is Contemporary Medical Acupuncture

Contemporary medical acupuncture (also known as functional integrated acupuncture or biomedical acupuncture) takes the traditional form of Chinese acupuncture and modifies it using modern day scientific understandings of human physiology and anatomy. At first glance contemporary medical acupuncture appears very similar to the traditional Chinese approach, as the same small, thin needles are placed in specific points on the body for a period of 5 to 30 minutes and removed. However, there are considerable differences between the approaches.

 Contemporary vs. Traditional

In contemporary medical acupuncture, treatment is given after a conventional medical/neuro-functional diagnosis. This diagnosis is made based on established methods of a medical history taking and physical examination. After the diagnosis is established, the practitioner will use acupuncture needles to influence the physiology of specific structures that were identified in the initial examination. Needle placement will be determined based on specific goals to affect local tissue structures, target specific spinal segmental outflow, as well as influence central regulatory effects on the nervous system. In summary the points used in this form of acupuncture are chosen based on their specific neuroanatomical and neuromuscular location related to your specific pain or dysfunction. The practitioner will typically use contemporary medical acupuncture as another treatment tool along with other therapeutic approaches such as: manual joint manipulation and mobilization, soft tissue techniques, stretching and rehabilitation exercises.

On the other hand, a traditional Chinese acupuncturist or Nathuropathic doctor will also do a very comprehensive history/physical examination but make a diagnosis based on complex theories regarding disturbance in the body’s balance (energy) that need to be addressed with treatment. This traditional form of acupuncture involves the similar use of small needles inserted at specific points on the body, but aimed to help to regulate the flow of energy or Qi. Dysregulation of this energy in the body is stated to be at the root of all ailments and disease. By regulating the state of qi with the needles, traditional acupuncturists aim to help guide the body back into homeostasis. While modern science may find it difficult to explain in conventional medical terms, traditional Chinese acupuncture has been around for more than 2500 years and has produced positive results for centuries.

Since contemporary medical acupuncture lends itself to the same method of understanding musculoskeletal complaints, it makes for an excellent clinical tool for many modern day manual practitioners to add to their current toolkit, including chiropractors, physiotherapists, massage therapy and more.

Commonly Treated Conditions (based on current evidence):

  • Neck pain
  • Upper limb pain, (especially rotator cuff tendonitis, tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow)
  • Lower limb pain
  • Low back pain
  • Chronic knee pain
  • Myofascial pain – including myofascial trigger points
  • Fibromyalgia

 

We at SpineWise have more then one provider that has been trained in acupuncture. Give us a call today to book your consultation! 905-623-8388