Chiropractic for ear infections, sudden bad calf pains and why sitting hurts more than hiking are topics that were answered on this episode of the show.

How Chiropractic Care Helps Ear Infections

Q: Christine from Middleton: My girlfriend’s 14 month old son has been getting a lot of ear infections. She brought him to a chiropractor because she heard it might help him avoid getting tubes in his ears. How will that help? I thought kids needed antibiotics for their ear infections.

A: Children who have more than 1 ear infection per year respond very poorly to a second round of standard broad spectrum treatment with antibiotics. Doctors no longer culture a sample of the ear infection to find out which antibiotic works best.  This can cause antibiotic resistance allowing more infections following broad spectrum antibiotic treatment.

Instead of giving drug treatment, Chiropractors look for the cause of the recurring infections. Often these children have several stuck joints in their neck which do not allow proper drainage of the inner ear.  

In addition children often have inadequate probiotics in their diet. They also often have food sensitivities to formula when they are not breast fed.

Gentle forms of chiropractic care can correct the neck joint problems so the inner ear can drain more easily. Then we discuss probiotic supplements and give diet suggestions so that infection or ear fluid is less likely to recur.  Addressing the common causes of repeat ear infection this way often means kids don’t need tubes put in their ears and they get better more quickly. 

Sudden Calf Pain

Q: Dan from Danvers Highlands: I heard a snap in my calf about 4 weeks ago when I went to run across the street.  I suddenly had so much calf pain I went to the Emergency Room because I couldn’t walk. They tested me for a blood clot but said I didn’t have a a blood clot. They discharged me after 6 hours but I am still in pain even after taking their prescription. How could it hurt so bad but not be anything serious?

A: The pain in your calf from running quickly across the street is likely to have been from an injury called  ‘tennis leg’. It is very painful and can make it hard to walk for quite a long time.

Many people do go to the Emergency Room due to pain. ERs will generally check for blood clots for a calf pain complaint. However your rapid onset with a snap sound is the best clue that it was actually a slight tear happening to part of the calf muscle.

Tennis leg is not a surgical situation but it can surprise many people to find-bruise like marks down in their ankle a day or two after the painful snap.

Tennis leg will respond to good hands-on myofascial care and chiropractic care. Special exercises to increase the strength of the shin muscles help as well because the too tight calf muscle has suffered a partial tear. A stronger shin muscle can better balance a tight calf muscle.  If tennis leg does not receive good care it takes longer to heal and can happen again with just as much pain.

Why does sitting hurt my back more than hiking?

Q: Judy from West Peabody: I have to sit all day at my job at the bank and it hurts my back. On weekends I like to climb and I have a back pack on.  Why doesn’t that hurt as much as just sitting?

A: Sitting causes twice as much compression on the spine as standing. Walking even with a back pack is better and healthier for you than prolonged sitting.

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