American Canyon Chiropractor - Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

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+1 (707) 864-2223Dr. Steve Rasmussen, D.C.
100 W. American Canyon Rd. Suite k6
American Canyon, Ca 94503 drsras@gmail.com

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Nutrition for Allergies

Giving your immune system the nutrition it needs to fight the season is a powerful way you can influence your health. Nutrition works two-fold to fight off allergies: regulating the immune system and preventing its inflammatory response mechanism. An important key to remember when selecting food is that higher quality ingredients lead to higher health.

Nutrients

Focus on Vitamin C, a natural antihistamine with citrus fruits and leafy greens. Sulfur and Selenium are minerals that boost the potency of Vitamin C. People lacking in vitamin D (most of the United States population), are more susceptible to respiratory problems including allergies. Boost your vitamin D by getting outside in the springtime sun, eating mushrooms and drinking milk that is D-fortified.

Calcium and Magnesium are complementary alkali minerals which temper the increase of histamine production during allergy season. 

Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish, are natural anti-inflammatories.

Foods to avoid:

Spicy foods: Yes, they make your nose run. This is because they also induce histamine production, adding onto your problem rather than solving it.  

Salt: high-sodium diets have been linked with respiratory problems and a low-sodium diet has been linked to better lung function. An easy way to cut down on salt is to cut out processed foods!

Though it may be a big lifestyle leap for some, try replacing soda with GREEN TEA. The sugar deficit alone will help your allergy symptoms, and green tea contains natural antihistamines and caffeine to boot. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we would like to help people manage their allergy symptoms with a holistic approach. To this end, we offer counseling on your specific diet to go along with our chiropractic treatment. Call our office at (707) 864-2223 to schedule an appointment today.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

Allergy Season

It could be as innocent as a cute sneeze or a watery eye: the first indicators of allergy season are rarely happy occasions. Chronic allergy sufferers know that these physical manifestations represent the onset of a turbulent season full of headaches and messy noses, itchy skin and stuffy ears. The standard medical response is to treat allergies with antihistamines, which are effective at drying out the nasal passageways. But treating the surface symptoms is not an effective cure; common sense would say that to do away with allergies for good, one must start by finding the underlying cause. Allergies occur when the immune system goes into overdrive to eradicate a perceived harmful substance. The histamines and antibodies that are created by the body are responsible for an inflammatory effect that causes allergic symptoms.

Chiropractic is not a direct treatment for allergies and therefore approaches them in a round about manner: because the nervous and immune systems overlap, the health of one can impact the other. By removing interferences in the nervous system, positive impacts are achieved in the immune system. A healthy body is one that uses its entire faculty to differentiate between truly and falsely harmful substances, coordinating responses accordingly.

Consider a subluxation of the ninth thoracic vertebra. At this point in the spine, nerves responsible for communicating between the brain and adrenal glands exit. The adrenal glands are responsible for tempering the release of histamines with cortisol, a strong anti-inflammatory. It is no coincidence that many chronic allergy sufferers have poorly functioning adrenal glands. By correcting subluxation to the T9 vertebra, the adrenal glands can work to full effect.

Allergies are a nuisance. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we believe that you can fight back with a healthy spine and a dose of awareness. Call our office at (707) 864-2223 to schedule an appointment today and see how you can fight back against these seasonal irritants.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

Respiratory Functioning with Chiropractic

Imagine a life of labored breathing: your body's attempt to intake oxygen and expel carbon dioxide is hampered by bronchospasm and tightness in the chest; a feeling of panic sets in and every breath is accompanied by a wheeze. Inhalers are sought to dilate the lungs and open inflamed airways, allowing for circulation, and the process is over, for the moment. Sufferers of asthma know that it is only a matter of time: the dark cloud of asthma is hanging around every corner as attacks often come on violently and unpredictably. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we are using the spine as a portal to the respiratory system in an effort to help people of all ages breathe easier.

The chiropractic connection to respiratory health lies in the cervical vertebrae, where nerves exiting from C3, C4 and C5 combine to form the phrenic nerve. This is the nerve primarily responsible with communicating between the brain and the diaphragm, the primary muscle used for breathing. The diaphragm and its auxiliary muscles benefit from unrestricted nerve flow through this region, meaning that a subluxation in any of these vertebrae can lead to difficulty breathing. Assuring the alignment of the cervical spine is a good step towards treating asthma: with gentle adjustment, we release pressure from the cervical nerves, allowing the breathing muscles to perform.

Reduced respiratory system function is also symptomatic of a high-stress lifestyle; we focus on restrictive muscles in the neck and tightness in the chest cavity as points of interest when people tell us they are having breathing problems. Our job is to ensure that no physical abnormalities are contributing to your respiratory condition. Call our office in American Canyon at (707) 864 2223 to find out how we can help lower the frequency and severity of asthma attacks in your life.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

Avoiding Neck Damage when Using Cell Phones

When using handheld devices, it is easy to slip into posture that puts strain on the neck. When people pull a phone out of their pocket to view or send text messages, you will most likely see them holding the phone near the waist, instinctively slumping their shoulders and craning the neck to peer downward at the phone. Likewise, with tablets and e-readers, it is most common to see people sitting and holding them in their lap, straining their neck to look downward. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we want to keep people aware of the importance of posture in preventing against neck damage. When engaging with your handheld device, try to remind yourself of the following simple tips:

Keep the spine in neutral posture by standing up straight, with your shoulders pulled backward and the head facing forward. To compliment this position, raise the device to eye level. It may feel funny at first, or make you feel self-conscious, but the benefit to your neck should outweigh the embarrassment. Make sure that the phone is not constantly in your hand, and if it is, change your position frequently to make sure the neck is not stuck in the head-forward position for long periods of time.

Little things, like our interaction with small screens, impact our overall quality of health. The neck already endures enough wear and tear from normal activity; for those who find texting an indelible part of their lifestyle, there are ways to combat the deleterious effects.  Call our office in American Canyon at (707) 864-2223 to schedule an appointment where we can discuss your habits and their impact on your spine. We can help you instill proper postural habits and show you stretches that will keep the neck protected. 

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C. 

Text Neck: A Modern Malady

Text messaging has become one of the primary methods of communication for Americans. Unfortunately, it is not a form of communication that the spine was prepared for: overuse of cell phones is causing premature degeneration of the spine. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we are witnessing firsthand the damaging effects of a 21st century lifestyle on the spine.  Worryingly, the demographic suffering the most damage is younger people, who use cell phones the most frequently.

The posture of the standard text message participant, whether sitting or standing, is head tilted forward and frequently downward. This is forcing muscles and tendons in the neck and shoulders to compensate in order to support a greater weight. The neck is designed to withstand a standard head weight in neutral posture of 10-12 pounds. When we angle our necks downward to receive or type text messages, we are magnifying the weight of the head exponentially on these very same muscles.  As with all forms of poor posture, the structures of our body are not meant to withstand increased weight or pressure for long periods of time.

For youth, whose spines are still developing, it is worth seriously considering the toll that text messaging could take. The damaging angle of text messaging can create developmental abnormalities such as muscular deformity and bone spurs. No matter your age, this is a problem that can be combatted with awareness and proactivity. Text neck is a modern extraction of a larger system: keeping your body in a neutral and supportive posture at all times of the day is a key to musculoskeletal well being. Posture is within your control; let us help you institute healthy habits that will lead to a life long healthy spine. Call our office in American Canyon at (707) 864-2223.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

Spondyloisthesis caused by auto accident.

Traumatic spondyloisthesis is a degenerative condition in which one vertebra slips forward onto the vertebra below in response to a direct injury. Auto accidents cause spondyloisthesis by creating stress fractures, which weaken the supportive integrity of the spine, allowing for movement of the vertebrae. People suffering from spondyloisthesis are most likely experiencing mechanical back pain, which can be treated effectively with chiropractic care.

In between your vertebrae are discs which act as cushions responsible for shock absorption; there are also facet joints which exist to restrain excessive motion that would cause damage to the spine. They allow the back to move forward and backward, but not too excessively. Spondyloisthesis occurs when these facet joints are compromised, allowing too much flexion. When this happens, vertebra, most commonly in the lumbar region, will slip out of position onto another vertebra, pinching the nerves and causing pain in the region.

The good news is that spondyloisthesis symptoms often respond very well to chiropractic care. At American Canyon Chiropractor, we offer a non-surgical treatment for this condition that works in phases: reducing pain, improving stability, correcting posture, strengthening, and finally maintenance. We do not treat the slippage directly, but rather focus on restoring function to the facet joints and thereby improve the conditions that are causing pain. Spinal adjustments target the joints that exhibit restricted mobility, allowing them to move again. Other modalities include flexion distraction and trigger point therapy to reduce tension in the affected area.

If your back is feeling abnormal in the wake of an accident, call our office to set up an appointment at (707) 864-2223. Motorists who have been in accidents in the American Canyon area can count on us to diagnose and treat their injuries with expertise and precision.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.

Herniated Disc After Auto Accident

Automobile accidents are common causers of herniated disc injury. Between each vertebra are intervertebral discs, which act as shock absorbers for the spine. Unfortunately, the force created by impact during an accident is often more than enough to effect a bulge or break in one or more of these discs. This occurs when a tear in the outer layer of the disc allows the soft core to leak out, putting pressure on nerves exiting the exiting the spine. The discs most likely to incur injury are the bottom two discs in the spinal column. Symptoms of disc herniation include reduced range of motion and stiffness, pain in the herniated region, and sciatica.

At American Canyon Chiropractor, we have years of experience treating sufferers who incurred herniated discs from automobile accidents. We focus on rehabilitating and strengthening joints and muscles in the damaged region. Therapeutic massage and chiropractic adjustment are effective techniques, but the specifics of your treatment plan depends entirely on your accident, your level of pain and overall health.

We will evaluate your entire spine after the accident to document all injuries and form a plan of treatment that will help you to heal fast and effectively. For some, the pain will be resolved on its own in a matter of weeks, but for others it can lead to life-altering, chronic pain. Do not sit around and hope that your pain goes away- this is how people end up with chronic injuries that they have for the rest of their lives. Your safeguard against paying out of pocket is to be evaluated by a professional in the detection of herniated disc injury. Call our office in American Canyon at (707) 864-2223.

Dr. Stephen Rasmussen, D.C.