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My Chiropractic Journey

My Chiropractic Journey

INTRO FROM DR PARTON: Robert is a patient who has started with our clinic recently and I’ve asked him to share his personal experiences as he undergoes his first months of chiropractic treatment with Mercer Island Chiropractic.

Being Chinese, I grew up in a home where our father had grown up and been educated here while our mother lived the first half of her life in a small village in China before finally joining her husband in Canada in 1950. As we grew up in this Eastern/Western household, our mother would often lecture us about many of the foods we were eating, among other things. She would really nag us when we ate too much candy or other Western foods, while constantly making us a lot of Chinese dishes and soups that sometimes weren’t exactly easy to eat! Lots of herbs and vegetables, often kind of gross and not exactly gourmet! And lots of old-school lectures on ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ foods and keeping our diets balanced. As kids, we never truly had any idea what our Mom was trying to tell us.

Once I moved away in my late teens, I lived through counterculture ’60s and remember more of my friends talking about Yin and Yang and balance. One day, the light bulb went off and suddenly all of Mom’s scolding made sense. In her own simplistic way, she was passing along generations of knowledge that had been handed down to her as she grew up. While Mom had never been formally educated, the thousands of years of health and healing had been passed along to her and it was her duty to raise us in a healthy environment. So for much of my adult life, I’ve also continued to pursue a healthy lifestyle and diet with a focus on balance.

And because of this Eastern influence from my early years, I’ve also embraced a balanced approach to taking care of my body and my brain. (Moderation plays a key role in all of this.) As someone who has been a strong advocate for alternative health care, chiropractic has played an important role in my life for nearly 40 years. I truly feel that it has helped a lot at different stages in my life, especially following some traumatic events.

I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Jeff Parton in April and became a patient after my first visit. There are some of you who – like me – have used alternative medicine for years, while others may have finally tried chiropractic for the first time recently. I’ve been treated by many practitioners over the years and I can honestly say that Dr. Parton is one of the best I’ve met. He takes his time with his patients, often explaining details about the issues he has found in your spine. His adjusting technique is very firm and he’s one of those rare practitioners who has an intuitive touch so he always manages to focus on your problem areas quickly.

As I’ve gotten to know him better over a few weeks of adjustments (and improving results), we both realized that we had mutual philosophies on healthy lifestyles, diet and balance. And it’s this holistic approach that helps each of us maintain a better lifestyle. So when Dr. Parton found that I was a writer and blogger (among other things), he asked if I would consider blogging about my personal experiences with his clinic and his unique approach to his patients’ needs.

We’ve already had some interesting discussions about Yin and Yang, diet, food and water, and exercise. The whole package. I have a feeling we won’t run out of topics to cover in the months to come. I hope you’ll find reading my personal journey helpful in learning more about your own healing.

Robert Lee

a grateful patient

A Pebble In Your Shoe…

A Pebble In Your Shoe…

 

I often use analogies to help explain the effects a vertebral subluxation can have on the body. By the way, a vertebral subluxation is what we upper cervical chiropractors fix and in so doing we help improve the function of the nervous system which enables our patients to heal from complicated and chronic health problems. One of my most frequently used analogies is the story about what happens when you get a pebble in your shoe.

PebbleInYourShoe2

 

It goes a little like this – Imagine that you’re on a 10-mile hike with your friends. After a couple of miles on the trail, you notice a little pebble has made its way into your right shoe. For the sake of this analogy let’s assume you and your friends are competitive and have agreed that the first person to complete the hike gets a free lunch at the expense of all the others on the hike. You really want that free lunch and therefore you don’t want to take the time to stop and remove the pebble, so you just keep hiking.

 

For the first mile or so you just kick your foot around trying to position the pebble up near your toes to minimize the rubbing. After a few more miles you notice a blister forming on your other foot as you’ve had to walk a little funny to keep the pebble in place. As the miles add up you notice that now your knees and low back are beginning to ache as well. Eventually, even your upper back and neck start to hurt because your whole body has had to adapt to the impact of that little pebble in your right shoe.

 

You end up coming in last even without stopping to take out the pebble because the pain slows you down. At this point, you wish you could go back in time and just take a couple of minutes to remove the pebble.

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A vertebral subluxation (you can think of it as a bone in your neck just slightly out of place) has a similar, but even more devastating effect on your body and how it functions. Why? Well, the top two bones in your neck (atlas and axis, or C1 and C2) help to protect your brainstem. Your brainstem is the part of your nervous system that controls and regulates nearly all of the life-supporting and life-sustaining functions of your body.

If you have a problem at the top of your neck (and it doesn’t always mean you’ll have neck pain) and you don’t get it fixed you can expect to have major health problems down the road. Problems like migraines, fibromyalgia, digestive trouble, even auto-immune conditions. Fixing the underlying cause now is easier than suffering from chronic problems later.

Mercer Island Chiropractic, Dr. Jeff Parton