Upper cervical chiropractic care gets the upper neck in alignment which takes pressure off the nerves and allows the body to function properly. This helps the sinuses and the ears to drain fluids properly, preventing infection.
Can you describe what occurs in the body when someone has a sinus infection?
Dr. F.J. Schofield: Sure. A sinus infection is like any other infection. What’s happened is you have a foreign invader, usually a bacteria or virus has gotten into that area, the sinuses, and now your body responds with an immune reaction to try to kill and get rid of the foreign invader, the virus or bacteria.
How does chiropractic care help with sinus infections? Is there a special treatment used?
Dr. F.J. Schofield: So what happens many times, when your neck goes out of alignment, it puts pressure and tension in the nerves in the upper neck, impinge, compress, stretch them. What that does is then whatever area that nerve controls, does not work right. It is kind of like when you’re on the phone, you tell someone to do something, they don’t hear everything you say. They don’t do that job right. Same thing in the body, when you’re out of alignment and there is pressure on nerves. Now typically what happens is those sinuses, when those nerves are being pinched, don’t drain properly. When they get backed up, you get mucous and different fluids in there, sitting in there for a while, it basically creates a good environment for bacteria or viruses to grow in. So what you want to do, and what I do, is you do a specific adjustment to the upper neck, the atlas. An upper cervical adjustment will get that upper neck in alignment and that will take the pressure off the nerve so the nerves work right, the sinuses work right, the sinuses drain, the body heals, and the bacteria, the viruses, disappear.
With regard to ear infections, are there chiropractic techniques used to help clear them up?
Dr. F.J. Schofield: The ear infections, same as the sinus infections. Basically, what’s happening is the upper neck is out of alignment, it’s creating nerve pressure and now the tubes in the ears don’t work right. They don’t drain so that creates, again, a good environment for viruses or bacteria to grow in. So same thing. You just want to do an upper cervical chiropractic adjustment to get the neck in alignment. Now we’re not treating these issues. We’re not treating these issues, but we are getting the neck in good alignment, making sure good nerve function and with that, most of the time you see the sinuses, the ears, drain properly and the infection goes away.
Can ongoing chiropractic care actually prevent ear and sinus infections from occurring?
Dr. F.J. Schofield: You definitely lower your risk and I’ve seen it many times with my patients, both adults and babies and children. By getting the body in good alignment and keeping it in good alignment, you’re making sure of good nerve functions. You’re making sure the sinuses and the ears drain and function properly. Now, diet, also very important. Supplements, different things. If you have kids and you know they are going to school, if you live in Wisconsin like I do, the sun’s disappearing so now you have less Vitamin D, which is important for immune function, and your kid’s around other kids that are sick lots of times so they’re more exposed to virus and bacteria. So along with good alignment, other good holistic choices to maintain good immune function will help lower their risk of getting sinus and ear infections.
Antibiotics are commonly prescribed for ear and sinus infections. What are some natural ways to eliminate the infection and clear up the symptoms?
Dr. F.J. Schofield: So yeah, antibiotics kill bacteria. All bacteria, good and bad. And if you do do antibiotics, make sure you’re taking a probiotic. All Bacteria’s being killed, good and bad and you want to replace good bacteria into your body, and your gut especially so you don’t have any bad side effects afterwards. So things you can do: Number one, cut out milk and dairy. Milk, sometimes people are allergic to dairy, a lot of them. It is one of most common food allergies that affects immune function. Also, milk just creates a good environment for bacteria to grow in. If you have those things or you know you get those things or your kids are going to school, cut out milk for a while or weekends only. Sugar and sweeteners, reduce them or cut them out. So cut out artificial sweeteners and sugars. If you think about it, most kids what they have for breakfast: milk, cereal. Sugar, dairy, and then you send them to school with a bunch of new bacteria and viruses they are exposed to and you just really increase the chance of them getting sick. So cut out sugar, sweeteners. Cut out milk and dairy. For breakfast, you can maybe give them some toast, some fruit, a smoothie, something that is not going to have a lot of sugar and dairy.
Next, what you can do is a lot of garlic. Garlic is an antiviral, antibacterial so you can give them a garlic supplement, that is the easiest way to do it. If it’s a baby, you can just take a garlic gel cap, cut it open, and rub it on the bottom of their feet. The reason the bottom of their feet is it’s the largest pores in the body, so it is the easy to get it in the baby then just put socks on the baby’s feet. Goldenseal, it is an herb and it’s kind of a natural antibiotic so it is going to go in and kill it. Get on a lot of good probiotics. Essential oils also work really well for these issues.
Just get your kids eating fruits and vegetables along with good alignment and getting adjusted and you’re going to help clear these issues up and lower the risk of getting them in the future.
If you are interested in speaking with Dr. F.J. Schofield visit www.westbendchiropractor.com or call 262-334-8188 to schedule an appointment.