Living Life Pain Free in Oak Ridge, TN

Living Life Pain Free in Oak Ridge TN

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Imagine waking up in the morning pain free in Oak Ridge TN. Does this sound unrealistic? Well, it shouldn't.

When I lecture at different companies in the area, back safety and injury prevention is a popular topic. Why is this? It is due to the fact that back pain is an epidemic. In fact, eight out of ten of us will experience back pain in our lives. Low back pain costs the United States $50-$75 billion per year. Wear and tear of the spine is responsible for 90% of all back pain. Seven out of ten cases are due to postural fatigue and spinal strains. So, what is the solution? Live with it? Take medication? At some point, you have to stop blaming it on age and genetics. This is not the card that you were dealt in life. The fact of the matter is the reason you have this pain is because of you.

Who Needs Chiropractic Care in Oak Ridge TN?

Patients always ask me the following. What is your worst off patient? Is it a construction worker? The answer is absolutely not. The patients that do manual labor are often in the best shape when looking at it from a musculoskeletal point of view. Who is the worst off? It is the "desk jockey". The reality is we are paid to sit, but we are not built to sit. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors did not sit around all day working and then head to the grocery store to do their hunting and gathering in thirty minutes. Just look at everyone around you at work, school or at home. They have terrible spinal hygiene.

Imagine eating candy all day long and never brushing your teeth. What would happen to your teeth? That's right. You would get cavities. So, to prevent cavities we eat right (hopefully) and brush our teeth. That is great. Now, what do you do for your spine? This seems like a strange question doesn't it. Well, let me ask you this. Can you live without your teeth? The answer is yes. Now, can you live without your spine? The answer is no. Spinal replacement surgery does not exist. So, why don't we take care of our spines? I attribute it to a vanity reason. We see our teeth and so does everyone else. You cannot see your spine without some type of special imaging. This special imaging commonly shows the dreaded arthritis. By the way, this is not because your parent has it. It is your lifestyle.

Let me share the common theme in our office in Oak Ridge, TN. A new patient comes in for an evaluation. They typically complain of pain in a joint whether it is the neck, back, shoulders, wrists, etc. We go through a detailed history which includes past traumas. I am often told that they have never had any traumas. Just because you didn't get rear-ended by a tractor trailer does not mean you haven't had any traumas. I think this is hard for most of us to understand. Sitting at a computer all day with our head hanging forward is a micro trauma. I think most of us can relate to this. At the end of a work day, our joints often feel stiff and achy. So, what do we do? The answer is not to head into work tomorrow morning and tell them that we quit. The answer is to seek guidance and treatment from a musculoskeletal specialist. That specialist is a chiropractor.

Many of us have not had the experience of being treated by a chiropractor. There are many different views and opinions of chiropractors. You should know that the musculoskeletal system is our "bread and butter". We take just as many hours in chiropractic school as your medical doctor takes in medical school. We just specialize in different subject matter. Chiropractors take three times the amount of hours when it comes to anatomy and physiology. Medical doctors take three to four times the amount of hours in pathology and obstetrics/pediatrics. I get referrals from medical doctors often and I refer to medical doctors often. So, what is the treatment protocol for patients with musculoskeletal pain?

The following four things need to be addressed when treating musculoskeletal pain:

1. Tissue
Tissue damage occurs after a macro or micro trauma. Our body repairs this damage by laying down collagen in the area which most people refer to as scar tissue. Collagen changes dysfunctional tissue into functional tissue. The only problem is that the scar tissue is only twenty to forty percent as strong as normal tissue. Breaking up scar tissue is important to help this area heal more properly.

2. Curvature
We have natural curves in the spine that are present for optimal function. The curvatures allows for proper biomechanical loading. When traumas occur, we lose the integrity of these curves and now the load of the body is supported improperly. Restoration of the spinal curvatures is required to take the improper load off of muscles and discs along the spine.

3. Mobility
Blood is one of the ways that we transport nutrients throughout the body. We do not have a direct blood supply to the discs that separate the bones in the spine. Thus, we require movement between vertebra to allow nutrients to get into the disc. This process is known as imbibition. The motion between vertebra must be restored to optimize this process.

4. Function
The three things that are listed above cause us to function improperly. This is where we see bad posture occur. We become weak in certain areas, which allow improper joint mechanics. Strengthening the proper areas allow our joints to articulate properly. This is how we can prevent future or further joint degeneration, also known as, osteoarthritis.

So, how do we implement these four things? I am often asked for advice on proper lifting techniques, ergonomics, pillows, beds…you name it. The reality is that most of us have become so dysfunctional from a musculoskeletal view point that rehab is absolutely necessary to undo what we have created. There is no magic pill. The pain did not happen overnight. It has typically taken years to get this way. At a very young age, we are taught oral hygiene. The first tooth appears and we begin to brush it. However, I have patients in their nineties that have never addressed spinal hygiene. They were never taught daily posture exercises that can be performed in a few minutes. So, what is the protocol for treatment?

Following a history, exam and necessary x-rays, a treatment plan is designed for each individual patient. These include a variation of adjustments, decompression, electrical stimulation, therapeutic ultrasound, massage, active stretching, neuromuscular reeducation and active rehab for strengthening. Treatment plans are specific to individuals. They can range from a few visits to a few months. This is all dependent on the findings from the exam.

Musculoskeletal pain affects many individuals in many different capacities. It can affect how you feel and how you deal with stressors in your life. It may affect the relationships with family, friends or coworkers. It can literally change who you are as a person. Would you or others around you like to see you wake up pain-free? The decision is yours to make.


9:00am - 1:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm

2:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 1:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm

2:00pm - 6:00pm

8:00am - 1:00pm

Saturday & Sunday

Eckert Chiropractic Center

1062 Oak Ridge Turnpike Suite B
Oak Ridge, TN 37830

(865) 220-8499
Chiropractic Oak Ridge TN Eckert Chiropractic Center