More than five million people in the United States are affected by scoliosis. Hundreds of thousands of visits are made to doctor’s offices every year by patients who want to be diagnosed or treated for this issue.

What is it?

Scoliosis is the lateral curvature of the spine, which is unnatural. Many people have spines that curve sideways, but the diagnosis of scoliosis is not given until the curvature is larger than ten degrees.

Most cases of scoliosis are not detectable by people who haven’t been trained in diagnosing the problem. Furthermore, most cases of scoliosis are not problematic or painful, as long as the problem is not progressing.

Scoliosis can bring a variety of symptoms that can worsen quality of life, however. Pain is one possible result of this disorder. Lung function can also be reduced, and even heart function can be affected.

The problem is most often found in adolescents between the ages of 10 and 15. Girls are more likely to have scoliosis than boys.

Most cases of scoliosis are not progressive. Parents of children with diagnosed scoliosis should take their son or daughter to be checked frequently, to make sure the problem isn’t worsening.

Does scoliosis come from poor posture?

The truth is that in the large majority of cases, the cause of scoliosis is unknown. It can’t be blamed on sports, carrying heavy bags, being a waiter carrying trays, bad sitting positions, etc. This isn’t to say that these things won’t result in back pain, but they don’t cause scoliosis, as far as current research shows.

The back can be injured in a variety of ways, and the integrity can be compromised. It is important to be diagnosed, so you can see what issues you’re dealing with. If it is scoliosis, make sure to monitor its progression. If it isn’t scoliosis, there may be treatments we can do to help lessen the pain and discomfort you feel.

Chiropractic For Headaches

What Are Headaches?

Headaches can be constant, annoying, and can interfere with everyday life. Most people think headaches are something normal, something that everyone gets. Well yes, a lot of people experience headaches. Nine out of ten Americans suffer from headaches, but this doesn’t mean that they are normal. A headache can be described as a throbbing pain that can be both occasional and frequent. Some may cause major pain and even nausea. Headaches are a result of something being off in your body. Things like stress, certain foods, alcohol, and toxic fumes can be triggers for headaches.

What Can You Do?

Many feel there aren’t many options to treat a headache. The options seem slim. You can lay down, or you can take a few over the counter pills. What people don’t know is that chiropractic care can be a great solution for headache pain. Research has shown that spinal manipulation, which can be completed by a chiropractor, is a great alternative for tension headaches and headaches in the neck. Studies completed at Duke University and studies published the Journal of Manipulation and Physiological Therapeutics have stated that chiropractic treatment gives the most immediate results for headache pain.

75 percent of all headaches are tension headaches. These are caused from muscle tension in the back and neck. This is where your chiropractor can do the most help. Your doctor will perform adjustments to your spine and neck which will help manipulate these areas into the correct position. Your doctor may also talk with you about diet and nutrition, as well as proper exercise to help ease headache pains.

Other Ways to Ease Pain

After adjustments are made by your chiropractor, there are suggestions you can apply to avoid further pain. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water to avoid dehydration. If you work a desk job, try and stand and stretch every hour, focusing especially on moving around your head and neck joints. Avoid high impact exercise and teeth clenching, as these can bring on headaches.

Dr. Barainca is trained in a technique called Vector Point Cranial Therapy which is very effective in relieving a headache immediately.

Don’t let headaches get in the way of your day. For more information contact us to help get rid of that throbbing pain.

Chiropractic For Pregnancy?

Chiropractic care is the process of maintaining a healthy spinal cord (along with the muscles, nerves, and joints that surround it), all without the use of drugs or surgery. This task is completed through adjusting and aligning the joints of the body. These quick fixes of the spine reduce stress and tension and ultimately promote health.

Why During Pregnancy?

During pregnancy, several physiological, hormonal, and endocrinological changes can occur. These changes help create a positive environment for the baby to develop, but in result can lead to misalignment in the spine and joints for the mother. Obviously when your beautiful big belly gets in the way of seeing your feet, you are going to have some natural pregnancy pain in your back and limbs.

Visiting a chiropractor can help relieve some of this pain. Many woman choose to see chiropractors for regular adjustments during pregnancy. For this reason many chiropractors specialize in pregnancy wellness. When searching for a chiropractor ask if they have training with pregnant woman and are certified to work on expecting mothers.

It is essential first to protect the baby so make sure that your chiropractor does not put pressure on your abdomen and avoids laying you on your stomach.

How Does it Help?

Chiropractic adjustments can help with various changes to your body due to pregnancy. The most common alignments help with protruding abdomens, swayed backs, and changes to the pelvic area and/or posture. Many expectant moms utilize visits to help obtain pelvic balance and alignment. If your pelvis is off, it can reduce room available to the baby, resulting in breech or other positions of the baby during delivery.

Other benefits of chiropractic care include controlling nausea, reducing labor and delivery time, preventing c-section deliveries, and maintaining an overall healthier pregnancy.

How to Get Started?

Interested in chiropractic care during your pregnancy? Ask your chiropractor if it is a good route for you and your baby. Frequent adjustments may be just what you need for an enjoyable pregnancy.

Office Chairs and Back Pain, Neck Pain

We have all experienced a long day of sitting in a desk chair at work. While this can make for a relatively boring day at the office, it has other possible consequences as well.

Sitting all day in a desk chair can cause back pain, and it can even exacerbate existing back problems. The posture of sitting places extra strain on back muscles and extra pressure on spinal discs. While the natural tendency when experiencing back pain while sitting is to slouch forward, slouching is even harder on your back. Make sure you have an ergonomically sound chair and that you sit up straight while at the desk. Take occasional breaks by walking around the office.

Chiropractic for Office Chair Pains

Back strain and neck strain, among other types of pain, can result from long hours at the office with bad posture or a bad chair. Chiropractors are trained to make sure the spine is in proper alignment, so office workers often find relief with Reno Family Chiropractic’s professionals.

Boosting your feet, not siting too high and making sure your computer screen is at eye level are some things you can do to prevent back and neck issues while at work.

In addition to causing back problems, sitting all day has another surprising correlation. A study found that people who spent most of the day sitting at work had significantly higher rates of chronic diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, regardless of whether subjects exercised regularly or had high body mass indexes. Additionally, the amount of time spent sitting is highly correlated with body weight. One study found that obese individuals spend 2.5 hours more per day sitting than their leaner counterparts. In line with the higher rates of chronic diseases and obesity, excessive sitting was also correlated with a lower life expectancy.

The effects of sitting all day are not limited to physical health. Sitting for long periods of time as well as a sedentary lifestyle in general have a negative impact on mental health as well.

How can we combat the effects of sitting for long periods of time at work? Whenever you have the chance, stand instead of sit. Stand while talking on the phone, or while eating lunch. Find ways to walk at work. Walk across the office to talk to a colleague instead of sending an email. Walk to the water fountain for a drink. Be conscious of how long you sit, and then tailor these suggestions to you.


Chiropractic for Sports Injuries

What sports injuries do Chiropractors treat?

Sports are a way of life. Whether it’s your own state soccer game, or the NBA, most everyone loves to sit down to watch a good competitive game. However with that competition comes aggressiveness and sadly injury. Having a sports injury can be incredibly discouraging, and with the intentions to get back on the field as soon as possible, people will do almost anything for fast healing. One of the best ways to find your way off the injured bench is to see a chiropractor. Today’s issue addresses what sports injuries chiropractors can treat, and with that how long till you are back in the batting line up.

Sprains and Strains

These annoying injuries deal first hand with tears in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Because tendons and ligaments attach muscles to bone, and bones to bone, these injuries can be extremely painful and irritating. The most common sprains and strains are found in the ankle and the knee. Seeing a chiropractor can help to increase the range of motion as well as share a wide range of techniques to assist in strengthening the injured area.


Those involved with sports are frequently pushing their bodies to the extreme, and therefore “overdoing” some of their tendons. This overuse can lead to inflammation of the tendon and ultimately tendonitis. Any place including your elbows or ankles can experience tendonitis, in which case chiropractors can assist in recovery through correcting joint positions, applying laser technique to remove inflammation, and/or breaking up muscle adhesion.

Stress Fractures

When putting an enormous amount of stress on a certain bone, stress fractures are in the works. Most commonly seen in runners, these fractures can put a damper on any form of physical activity. Shin splits are also a micro-fractures along the shin. Chiropractors can help by bracing the fracture, helping balance the weight bearing joints, and applying various therapies to promote a speedy recovery.

The Steps

Chiropractors treat many sports injuries that you wouldn’t think of. The most important thing to do when an injury occurs is rest, ice, heat, apply compression, and elevate. Call your doctor as well as the chiropractor to see what steps need to be taken for proper treatment and a speedy recovery.

Chiropractic for Car Accidents

It goes without saying that no one wants to be in a car accident. Thousands of people lose their lives and millions more suffer minor to severe injuries as the result of car accidents all across the country. Here in Reno, dozens of car accidents happen every day and many people are left with back and neck pain.

Unfortunately, many of these people suffer through back and neck pain because they don’t know what else to do. Painkillers can only do so much and can be dangerous, while surgery is expensive and invasive. Luckily, spinal adjustment and chiropractic are proven safe and effective for the treatment of back and neck pain.

Chiropractic and spinal adjustment are well documented as one of the safest drug-free, minimally invasive therapies for musculoskeletal ailments. Precise cervical manipulation has been shown to improve joint mobility, restore range of motion, and reduce muscle spasms, which helps relieve pressure and tension in the area of the neck. Spinal manipulation in other areas of the spine is also shown to help relieve back pain and muscle tension.

When used shortly after a car accident and depending on the nature of the individual’s pain, manipulating the spine through with specialized chiropractic techniques can restore and enhance joint function, which often helps relieve joint inflammation and reduce back pain.

Spinal adjustment is a remarkably safe procedure that is proven to relieve pain and improve overall health. In fact, most of our patients report feeling immediate relief after treatment. Some feel achy or mild soreness, but this kind of discomfort typically goes away after about 24 hours.

If you’ve been in a car accident and you’ve been feeling sore or achy for a few days, come in and see us at Reno Family Chiropractic. We can help you understand the source of your discomfort and pain, while presenting you with a number of different options for treatment.

Chiropractic For Sciatica

Our sciatic nerve originates in the lower back, travels through our buttocks and end further down our leg. It’s one of the most important nerves in our bodies (and the longest) but as many of us know, it can also be a source of pain.

So what causes sciatica?

Typically, sciatica is caused by a herniated disc or bone spurs near the sciatic nerve. A herniated disc can put pressure on or pinch the sciatic nerve, which may cause the nerve to become inflamed or swollen. This can lead to feelings of numbness or moderate to severe pain.

Sciatica typically involves radiating pain in the lower back and buttocks. A common symptom is described as “pins and needles,” but sciatica pain comes in a lot different varieties. It can present itself as a mild ache, moderate discomfort, or burning sensation and excruciating pain. Pain can radiate below the knee, but it differs for every individual. It can sometimes feel like an electric jolt that can be made worse by extended periods of sitting or even sneezing.

Generally, self-care techniques and rest are enough to control the pain for mild sciatica. For more severe cases that don’t improve after a short time many people often turn to options like chiropractic treatment.

Treatment of sciatica will always depend on the underlying causes of the condition. In rare cases sciatica is best treated with surgery, but more often than not conservative treatments like chiropractic are just as effective and much safer.

The aim of chiropractic care is to restore spinal movement and positioning, which improves the function of the spine while ideally decreasing pain and inflammation. A chiropractic treatment plan may cover several different treatment methods, including but not limited to spinal adjustments, ice/heat therapy, ultrasound, TENS, and rehabilitative exercises, depending on the cause of the pain.

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, come in and see us at Reno Family Chiropractic. We can help you understand the source of your pain and help you get relief.

Pain Relief and Chiropractors

Physical pain is one of the worst parts of life, especially when it persists. How can a chiropractor help?

Our backs are a central source of pain. When it comes to back pain, what are your options? Do you just have to grin and bear it for a while until it goes away and hope that painkillers can keep you functioning? What about surgery? When it comes to issues like joint abnormalities, poor posture, or muscle strain, chiropractic care is a safe and highly effective means of treatment.

However, many people wrongly assume that if they have back pain their only options are painkillers or expensive surgery.

The American Chiropractic Association President Keith Overland, DC recently said, “Research supports the use of more conservative treatments as a first-line defense against pain. This sensible approach not only reduces health care costs but also may help some patients avoid riskier treatments altogether.”

In light of recent reports on the safety and effectiveness of spinal adjustment, it’s hard to imagine why more people with lower back pain are not seeking conservative options like chiropractic care.

Chiropractic adjustment can help relieve pain and prevent future pain by correctly adjusting the spine.

Spinal adjustment involves applying exact pressure, either with the hands or special instruments, to manipulate the joints of the body. A trained chiropractor will manipulate the spine in such a way that helps restore and enhance joint function. This often helps relieve joint inflammation and reduce the patient’s pain.

Doctors of Chiropractic are highly trained and skilled professionals. At Reno Family Chiropractic, we promise to adapt the adjustment procedure according to the needs of our patients.

Cervical and spinal manipulation is a remarkably safe procedure that produces positive results. Most report feeling immediate relief after treatment. Occasionally, a small number of patients experience some mild achiness or soreness, not unlike the stiffness many of us feel after exercise. This kind of mild discomfort typically goes away after about 24 hours. If you’re suffering from any kind of back, come in and see us. We’re happy to discuss chiropractic adjustment and address any concerns you may have.

Common Pinched Nerve Causes

As we get older and with the wear and tear of everyday life, we become more and more susceptible to pinched nerves in the neck and the back. Having a pinched nerve can result in muscle spasms, tingling, interrupted nerve signals and shooting pains. Many people assume that the only treatment option for a pinched nerve is surgery, but conservative spinal treatment like chiropractic is proven to safe and effective.

Typically, a pinched nerve in the neck occurs when surrounding tissues are putting pressure on the nerve. These tissues can be anything from surrounding bone, cartilage, muscle, and tendons to any other inflamed tissue that has otherwise invaded the nerve’s space.

There are many conditions of the neck and back that can result in nerve impingement. Here are a few examples of specific conditions that commonly cause pinched nerve in the spine:

• Spinal arthritis
• Bulging disc
• Bone spurs
Herniated disc
• Degenerative disc disease
• Facet disease

There are several other factors that can increase a person’s chances of pinching a spinal nerve, however. For example, obese individuals who carry excess weight that puts added pressure on the spine are often at risk of back pain and pinched nerves. Excess body weight accelerates the weakening of the spine’s discs, which occurs naturally during the aging process. Displaced intervertebral disc tissue, otherwise known as a herniated disc, is one of the most common causes of pinched nerves. As the discs of the spine degenerate, the softer inner portion of the disc extends beyond the outer shell of the disc. When this happens, the disc can press against the adjacent nerve causing chronic pain.

Repetitive movements can also cause pinched nerves and herniated discs, so someone with a profession that requires frequent, repetitive motions may also be at risk.

Pinched nerve treatment can vary depending on the underlying condition. If you have been dealing with a constant pain in the neck, come in and see us. A board certified chiropractor can give you more information about your condition and formulate a unique treatment plan to get you pain-free as soon as possible.

Chiropractic Adjustment and Neck Pain

Written by Sheri Barianca

Neck pain is one of the most common complaints of patients who seek chiropractic treatment and it can be caused by a number of different issues. Abnormalities in the bone or joints trauma, poor posture, muscle strain, degenerative disc disease, and even tumors can cause lasting neck pain. While a chiropractor cannot treat all of these issues such as tumors or degenerative disc disease, they can treat the other most common causes for neck pain safe and effectively.

Doctors of Chiropractic treat a variety of conditions, but most people seek out chiropractic care for back pain, neck pain, and headaches—all of which doctors of chiropractic are particularly skilled at treating with spinal manipulation.

Spinal manipulation is widely recognized as one of the safest drug-free, minimally invasive therapies for neuromusculoskeletal complaints. For neck pain and headaches, precise cervical manipulation has been shown to improve joint mobility, restore range of motion, and reduce muscle spasms, which helps relieve pressure and tension in the area of the neck.

The process of spinal adjustment involves applying precise pressure, either with the hands or special instruments, to an individual joint along the spine. Manipulating the spine in this way helps to restore and enhance joint function, which often helps resolve joint inflammation and reduce the patient’s pain. This procedure is highly controlled and very safe. On rare occasions, it may cause a small amount of discomfort, but more often than not, patients report positive changes in the their symptoms immediately following treatment.

No medical treatment is entirely removed of potential adverse effects. The risks associated with chiropractic treatment, however, are very small. Many patients feel immediate relief after treatment, while others may feel mild achiness, stiffness or soreness, just as one might after exercise. This kind of mild discomfort typically goes away after about 24 hours.

If you’re suffering with neck pain or back pain, contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment for neck chiropractic treatment at our Reno office.

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How a Chiropractor Treats Back Pain

Chiropractic treatment is a great option for someone suffering from back pain. In fact, among people looking for alternative back pain relief, most decide on chiropractic care, with about 22 million Americans visiting chiropractors every year.

So, how does a chiropractor treat back pain? Chiropractors operate under the belief that healing can occur without invasive and risky surgery or habit-forming medication. They use hands-on techniques to manipulate the spine, because correct alignment of the musculoskeletal structure of the body allows the body to essentially heal itself.

For a complaint of back pain, the chiropractor will scrutinize personal medical history, complete a physical examination, and perhaps use different tests to determine what treatment will be most helpful for the individual patient’s back pain. The chiropractor will need to know about past injuries and illnesses, mental health, current health problems, and overall lifestyle including diet, sleep habits, and exercise habits.

The first visit, depending on severity and complexity of problems, will last about 30-60 minutes. The actual treatment will likely involve one or more hands-on adjustments. In these adjustments, the chiropractor may work the joints using sudden but controlled and precise force to allow for greater range of motion.

The adjustments will apply to any abnormal vertebra, which will not only allow for greater range of motion and improve physical function, but will also reduce nerve irritability, the source of much pain and discomfort. Back pain may also be treated with low-velocity manipulation, wherein muscles and joints are moved and stretched, again reducing pain and discomfort without the hassle or invasiveness of surgery. Some chiropractors also employ massage techniques to treat back pain.

Some people may feel slightly achy, stiff, and unusually tired for several days after the chiropractic visit, as the body adjusts to its new alignment.

No pain should result from any chiropractic treatment. In addition to the actual treatment, many chiropractors suggest lifestyle changes to improve back pain, including improved nutrition and exercise habits.

What Causes Low-Back Pain?

Mild to severe back pain affects a large number of people in Reno, Nevada and just about everyone at some point in their lives. It can keep us from enjoying our favorite activities, spending time with our families, and it is the most common reason for missing work. According to the American Chiropractic Association, 31 million Americans experience low-back pain at any given time and it’s the second most common reason for visits to the doctor’s office.

So what causes low-back pain? The simple answer is some sort of musculoskeletal problem, but that could mean any number of things. Everything from muscle strains to herniated discs, all the way down to bacterial infections, can cause debilitating back pain. Most cases, however, are mechanical and not the result of a serious condition like arthritis, infection or cancer.

Most of these musculoskeletal problems are most commonly caused by sports injuries, car accidents, improper lifting, or event just poor posture. As a nation, we sit too much. Whether it’s in the car, at work, or in front of the TV, we just simple do too much sitting. And the result is often back pain.

So what can you do about low-back pain? You’re best bet is to avoid it altogether. Maintaining a healthy weight, staying active, and avoiding prolonged sitting are the best ways to avoid aggravating your back. If and when back pain strike, however, seeing a chiropractor is a highly effective, low-cost means of treating back pain.

Spinal manipulation is receiving more and more attention for its effectiveness and safety from organizations like the American Medical Association. Conservative treatment for back pain is recommended by the Agency for Health Care Policy—a federal research organization—as the only safe and effective, drugless form of initial treatment for acute low-back pain in adults.

If you’re suffering from low-back pain, don’t wait to seek treatment. Consult with a certified chiropractor to learn more about effective back treatments and how to avoid further back pain.

Pinched Nerve Pain Relief

Most of us have heard the term “pinched nerve,” and know it is generally associated with pain. But what is actually happening inside of our bodies when a nerve gets “pinched?”

The sciatic nerve is a very large nerve, the largest single nerve in our bodies, in fact. This nerve branches out from the spine in the lower back. The nerve also runs down the back of each leg, and branches out from there to innervate other parts of the lower body, like the thigh, calf, foot and buttock.

Sometimes, other things in the body interfere with this nerve. A common cause of this is a herniated disc, which occurs when the soft interior of a spinal disc bulges out. This herniation, as it is called, can irritate the nerve. Other terms for a herniated disc include a slipped disc, bulging disc, protruding disc and more. This herniation is often what causes the “pinched nerve.”

Another common cause of sciatica is degenerative disc disease. A natural process of aging is that the discs of the spine begin to degenerate. The degeneration of these discs can also irritate the nerve root.

There a number of ways to determine if the pain you are experiencing is from sciatica nerve pain. First, and what may be surprising to some, is that the pain from sciatica, or a pinched nerve, will be felt most often in one side of the buttock or leg, not in the back.

The pain will most likely be worse when sitting. The pain itself will be a burning or tingling sensation. The pain may make it difficult to stand, and you might have some difficulty moving your leg.

It can be difficult to determine if the pain is from a nerve or from a muscle or other tissue issue. A therapist or chiropractor will be able to help you reach a solid conclusion about what exactly is causing the pain, so you can move forward with appropriate treatment.

The irritation of the sciatic nerve can often be treated non-surgically. Home remedies like ice and heat can help. Chiropractors can perform spinal manipulation to remove pressure off the nerve. A number of other options are available as well.

Check Out Some Testimonials From Reno Family Chiropractic Patients

Fender Benders and Chronic Injuries

You could be forgiven for thinking that there is little to no logic in the connection between serious injuries and small accidents. In fact, we have terms for just this kind of thing—“freak injury” and “freak accident” are two that come to mind. The sometimes chronic and severe injuries that result from seemingly innocuous accidents might just have to be chalked up to one of the mysteries of the universe.

Until this year, auto accidents we’re the leading cause of death in the US (now, they’re number two on that list). According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 25,580 fatal automobile accidents in 2012. It’s safe to assume that if there were 25,000 fatal accidents there were thousands more that didn’t result in death, but more than likely resulted in severe injury. Moreover, it’s safe to assume that there were just as many minor accidents and fender benders throughout the entire country.

Anyone who has driven for more than a few years has probably been in an accident of some kind. Some of those have walked away from major accidents with nothing but a few scratches while others have come away from fender benders with chronic aches and pains.

The most common injuries associated with minor car accidents include soft tissue injuries to the face, mainly from projectiles (glass, loose objects in the car, airbags, etc.) collision with the steering wheel, and/or whiplash, or more correctly Cervical acceleration-deceleration (CAD).

Whiplash can involve a hyperflexion and hyperextension of the muscles, tendons, and ligaments of the neck amongst other things. Neck injuries are very common simply because of the anatomy of the involved. Our heads are heavy, and even though our necks perform quite well under normal circumstances, during an accident our neck can’t cope with the quick whipping motion that results from getting rear-ended.

Whiplash is yet another issue that science hasn't fully been able to explain. Some have chronic pain as the result of a small accident, while others won’t feel any pain. Doctors and researches are at a loss as to the exact causes but it is generally accepted that the hyperflexion and hyperextension of the muscles, tendons, and ligaments of the neck is mainly to blame. Furthermore, car manufacturers have taken notice and are making significant efforts to lessen the frequency at which whiplash injuries occur in minor accidents.

Treatment of whiplash varies from case to case and depends on the extent of the injuries suffered. While some doctors and chiropractors might advise a regimen of ice and painkillers, others might employ cervical manipulation to improve the mobility and function of the spine. If you experience any kind of prolonged pain following a car accident, come see us! Chiropractors are well equipped to deal with these car accident injuries and the associated pain. Come meet our chiropractors and staff.

Try to be safe—it’s a jungle out there, even in Reno.