How to handle the stress that the holidays add to our lives:
Look what’s coming through the clinic door! Holiday stress
Are you feeling the Holiday stress? Are you sleeping poorly, feeling short tempered, or having more headaches and pain than usual? Perhaps stress is getting the best of you.
- Cookies, Candy: Holiday Carbs
Too much of a good thing.
Everything in moderation, including moderation
What’s your “drug of choice”? Chocolate, cookies, dressing, potatoes, pie?
- Hey Baby, Its Cold Outside
The stress that big storms bring
Here in the Pacific Northwest we experienced our first big storm of the season. Over 125,000 households lost electricity during the week of Thanksgiving.
- There is No Place Like Home (and Family) For The Holidays
We live our busy lives for weeks and months on end then suddenly we throw ourselves in the middle of our families to celebrate the holidays.
Old Tensions/Old Dramas/Old Resentments
They know how to push your buttons because they helped install those buttons!
Its so hard to say goodbye, so lets fight!
- All I Want for Christmas is . . .
Big lists, small budgets
Redefine your holiday traditions. Let Go of the Shame and fear of disappointing and give yourself a break!
The bottom line is be kind to yourself. The stress we put on ourselves is a killer. It is perfectly ok to cut yourself some slack. It is really hard to be perfect all the time!
Bartok the fruit bat said it best, “…Stress, its a killer, Sir”. ~Anastasia. Disney 1997
The Back and Hip Pain
Back and hip pain can be so debilitating that it can bring the most stoic to tears. Even minor lower back pain can make it impossible for you to sit or stand comfortably for any extended amount of time. While there are many prescriptions that issued each year to lessen the symptoms it still leaves the sufferer to wonder how to get rid of back pain instead of masking the symptoms.
There are basically two types of back and hip pain. Acute back pain which is a result of a strain or injury is the most common form and usually lasts a period of a few days to a few weeks. Chronic back and hip pain is any pain that lasts longer than three months and fortunately is uncommon. Acute back and hip pain is usually characterized by dull aches or debilitating spasms that are intense and painful.
Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain is most common especially in an active and aging population. Often lower back pain is caused from lifting improperly because we tend to lift with our backs and not with our stronger leg muscles. Here are some things to do to take care of your lower back:
- Bend at knees and not at waist
- Maintain good posture
- Take frequent breaks and change positions
How to Get Rid of Back Pain
Learn how to get rid of back pain by listening to your body and giving it ample opportunity to rest supported. That might mean visiting a chiropractor or even investing in a new mattress, lowering the intensity of your exercise routine and focusing on strengthening the weaker more troublesome muscles. Perhaps it means starting a regular exercise routine that you may have been neglecting.
It is easier to push away from that cliff of pain then to pull you back over the edge. Regular chiropractic check ups are a good way to prevent the pain from turning into something more chronic. A good chiropractic routine will help keep your tail wagging and your head on straight!
If your back continues to bother you for more than 24 hours or the pain is too intense to sit or stand for any period of time it is time to seek out a professional. Getting rid of back and hip pain may be a slow process of making adjustments to routines or incorporating new ones. Lower back pain, if not addressed properly can turn to chronic back pain. Pay attention to the signs, get moving, and see your health care professional to learn how to get rid of back pain.
Let me tell you a bit about myself. I was born and raised in the small community of Hutchinson, Minnesota. I was a “city kid” growing up in a town of 7,000. My grandparents and great grandparents were all farmers that had immigrated to Minnesota in the 1800’s. My parents, Wilma and Harold Grams, owned an independent insurance agency on Main Street. Both of them still live in Hutchinson, but my Mom has been in an Alzheimer’s residence for the past five years and Dad still lives in the house I grew up in. My brother Mark lives down in Atlanta with his wife and two sons, Ryan and Colin. I love being their “Aunt Chrissy” entertaining them with tales of their daddy when he was a boy their age.
I moved to Minneapolis in the ‘70’s and got into nursing and specialized in Physical Medicine Rehabilitation. I got married in the ‘80’s, divorced in the ‘90’s and, remarkably, remain great friends with Andy, my Ex. We never had and kids, but over the years I’ve had many rescue cats, dogs, bunnies and birds come into my life. Currently, I have a big black cocker spaniel named Casper who sings with me in the morning and two very tolerant cats named Riley and Miss Cleo.
Twenty some years ago my professional path was influenced by my own personal journey after an injury that set me back to where I needed several years to recover enough to be able to walk and to work again. Back in the ‘80’s when I was a nurse, I injured my spine, pelvis and hip while transferring a patient. I spent the next few years in physical therapy and chiropractic care regaining the ability to go about my daily activities. Over time, I slowly recovered much of my strength, but I still needed to walk away from my nursing career with all its lifting bending and twisting, and my beloved ‘72 Ford Mustang when I could no longer manage its clutch.
During my own rehabilitation, I was introduced to Network Chiropractic Analysis (NSA), and to Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST). Both of these techniques helped me in my recovery from that lifting injury. But I was also, myself, working through old injuries, illnesses, traumas and abuses that I had stacked up over the years. I found myself working through old mental and emotional patterns from past events along with the old physical ones.
I learned that the body doesn’t discern between the source of a stress response pattern, be it physical, mental, or emotional, or even when the pattern first occurred. Stress is stress. The body’s memories and the way it responds to stress are stored in every cell of the body. And all of these memory patterns are inter linked with one another. So when we work through one pattern, it has an influence with all the other stress patterns stored in our body.
I decided to return to school and become a chiropractor. There, I was able to compare the medical and chiropractic models of disease and wellness. After I graduated, I took the science and art of both fields and created my own style. I chose to build a practice that allowed for that philosophy to be reflected in its everyday operations. I built a practice where I could spend 30 minutes with my patients. I took the time to build strong supportive relationships with each client and I loved going to work everyday.
Its been those clients that have been my greatest teachers. Everyone that walked through my door taught me something. I learned that healing is more that just relieving ourselves of pain. That treating the entire person is more than just treating a symptom. I was shown the importance or our relationships, how we relate with our families, our communities and with ourselves. Its how we react and respond to life’s little cosmic pop quizzes every day of our life. Its how we each face living and dying and all the moments in between that influence our health and well being the most.
Over the years, my practice, MorningStar Healing Arts, grew and flourished. In recent years, I had been feeling that I needed to move on to something else. Then last winter I heard that there was a practice for sale in Washington, so I took a leap of faith and flew out here to take a closer look. From the minute I drove off the ferry it felt like I was coming home. It was so easy to see myself living and working in a small town again. I flew back to Minnesota, freaked out , took a big breathe and put my practice up for sale. It sold within a few weeks.
I rented my house packed my life into two PODS, and drove my cats, dog and myself across the country for the opportunity to become a part of this great community. I want say thank you for the warm welcome that I have received from everyone and I look forward to continuing to this path with all of you.