Archive for November 2009

November 20th, 2009 — 9:49am

“Knowledge is knowing a fact. Wisdom is knowing what to do with that fact.”

B.J. Palmer

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Labor Day 2009, South Presidentials w/ Arlo and Dana

November 17th, 2009 — 9:08pm



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Problem-solving care versus wellness care

November 14th, 2009 — 9:49pm
I’d like to talk about problem-solving care versus wellness care. Most of you have initially sought chiropractic in order to deal with a particular symptom…..usually musculo-skeletal in nature. What happens next varies widely from person to person. Some patients stay singularly focused on the initial complaint and discontinue care when the problem is resolved. Others return for care when the problem re-occurs or when new problems arise. Some adopt a loose schedule of maintenance visits to fill in the gaps around any symptom-based care they may need. And others incorporate a wellness approach to care with weekly adjustments, regardless of feeling “bad” or “good”. With all these different approaches to care its important to clarify the difference between a wellness adjustment and a symptom-based adjustment. Actually, there isn’t one! A chiropractic adjustment has a singular goal every time it is performed, which is to detect and correct spinal misalignments (subluxations) which are interfering with the nervous system’s ability to properly express health in the body. This is the same on the first adjustment as it is on the 5,000th. Therefore, every adjustment is both problem-solving and wellness-promoting at the same time. There are always “problems” which are addressed during spinal care, even though most of them are asymptomatic at the time and there are also always potential “problems” which never develop. Most of you know that I am a strong advocate for wellness care. I frequently use the examples of changing the oil in your car or having your teeth regularly checked to support the concept of wellness or preventative spinal care; waiting for poor spinal health to result in dis-ease in the body is like waiting for a cavity to abscess before going to the dentist. So the real distinction between symptom care and wellness care resides in the mind-set of the patient. I hope to encourage more of you to consider the preventative aspect of chiropractic; it is an undeniable fact in my practice that long-term wellness patients tend to have fewer symptom-based problems and are more pro-active about their health overall.


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Early chiropractic history

November 14th, 2009 — 9:35pm
Greetings. To begin, I’d like to acknowledge the fact that these letters are a bit “dense”. I tend to reject the advice of the practice “gurus” who encourage chiropractors to “keep it simple” when connecting with patients. I personally don’t appreciate being “talked down to” and try to respect my patient’s intelligence and interest from the same orientation.
Over the next several posts I’m going to provide some details about chiropractic history in the hopes of creating perspective on the current status of our profession. Although there is evidence that other cultures developed spinal care techniques for the purpose of improving health as far back as the Greeks, the specific art, philosophy and technique of chiropractic began in this country in 1895. A magnetic healer in Davenport, Iowa named D.D. Palmer discovered quite by accident that the relationship between the spine and the nervous system has profound implications for health. He embarked on a journey of exploration and discovery that led to the development of a radically different approach to health care from that of allopathic medicine. He called it chiropractic, which is Greek for ” practiced with hands”. The most significant departure was rooted in the philosophy and intent of the practice. Rather than interacting with the human body as a mechanical machine which breaks down and then needs to be fixed from the outside with chemical and surgical intervention, chiropractic relied on the understanding of the human body as a vitalistic, self- regulating and self-healing organism. It recognized the critical role that the nervous system plays in mediating that regulating and healing potential and began to develop methods of helping the body to improve the relationship between the spine and the nervous system. Chiropractic did not claim to treat or cure disease, but instead to provide a non-invasive and non-directive method of supporting the body’s relentless tendency towards healing and normal function; from the inside-out rather than outside-in.

Through the first 15 years chiropractic developed in a very open playing field. Medicine had not yet politically and legislatively asserted itself as the sole guardian of health care in this country and chiropractic quickly exploded in popularity, with schools springing up and people benefiting from chiropractic in rapidly increasing numbers. The scope of practice was not restricted to symptomatic treatment of musculo-skeletal pain since the chiropractic premise was that all function in the body is controlled by the nervous system and therefore there is no specific health issue which could not be improved through appropriate spinal care. The divergent philosophies and applications of chiropractic and medicine, combined with chiropractic’s surging popularity set the stage for a showdown over health care control which would rage into the second half of the 20th century. This period will be discussed in my next post.




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Allopathic medicine’s view of alternative methods

November 14th, 2009 — 9:24pm
 Greetings. I want to take some time in this letter to discuss the increasingly volatile health care environment. Many patients have been asking questions about and commenting on recent reports showing a steady increase in the number of visits to alternative therapies while at the same time questioning chiropractic’s effectiveness and appropriateness as well as that of alternative health care in general. Here is a response.

 Allopathic medicine is on the offensive regarding its ability to influence public opinion and utilization of alternative care. Anyone who questions this should read the medically generated reports and studies regarding the efficacy of alternative options. There is a decidedly critical stance relative to “scientific validity”. The chief of general medicine at a local hospital recently predicted that 95% of alternative therapies would not withstand scientific scrutiny. Allow me to stick my neck out and agree that most alternative systems will never be scientifically proven or dis-proven, at least not in any classical sense. Most of them are better explained by a quantum model and the sooner the alternative care community embraces this instead of trying to make excuses for it, the sooner the debate can really be clarified. In any case, medicine creates a serious dilemma for itself by focusing on this point. Only 30-40% of medical practice is actually proven scientifically; the rest is based on clinical trial studies and the vast majority of this “science” occurs in the treatment of chronic illness. Granted, clinical trials can be an investigative step along the way to scientific fact but they are most certainly not science in of themselves. When you look at the incidence of iatrogenic (caused by treatment) illness and mortality (now the third leading cause of death in this country), especially in light of estimates that early next century one out of two middle-aged adults will have at least one chronic degenerative illness, serious questions could be raised about medicine’s effectiveness as primary gatekeepers of non-critical health care.

There has also been a noticeable escalation in the already saturated advertising campaign by medicine designed to keep people in the “sickness/reactive” health care mindset. Most troubling to me is the explosion of ads for prescription drugs. Especially for children, these ads plus the constant barrage of messages for over-the-counter medication encourage a belief system that health care is about getting sick and then trying to figure out how to make it better. It ensures almost obligatory compliance with the allopathic system and inherently shifts the focus away from a preventative, wellness approach to health.

These trends will continue and the debate over them will shape the future of our health care system. It will get more heated and the stakes will get higher. I believe there will be many casualties as a direct result of this escalation and I encourage all of my patients to consider carefully the implications for themselves individually as well as for their friends and family. I think there will be increasing pressure from the medical and scientific community to regulate, restrict and even prohibit access to alternative care and it may well be insufficient to sit on the sidelines, hoping it will “all come out in the wash”. I encourage you to stay informed.

Sixty years ago many chiropractors were in jail, charged with practicing medicine without a license. Only through extraordinary commitment and perseverance were we as a profession able to establish that we are practicing something entirely different from medicine; something called chiropractic. In fact we are not in the business of treating disease, but rather locating and correcting vertebral subluxations which interfere with normal neurological function and the ability for the innate intelligence in the body to express balance and homeostasis. And in keeping with the wellness approach, chiropractic has historically promoted healthy life-style issues regarding diet, exercise and soundness of mind, even before it was fashionable to do so. The same challenges faced by my profession for 103 years are now being brought to bear on other alternative methods as well and again it will require persistence and fortitude to overcome them. I encourage patients to present questions and concerns to me regarding these matters and to do so without reservation.

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Referral Discount through 01-15-2010

November 14th, 2009 — 9:17pm
My practice is 99% patient-generated referalls. In humble deference to that fact I am once again offering a complimentary initial exam (normally a $60.00 charge) to new patients referred to the office by current patients and this is good through January 15th, 2010. It does not include charges for any spinal adjustment which takes place during the initial visit.


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Kanawa Canoe Magazine Article

November 14th, 2009 — 6:22pm


“Do you want the last smoked oyster?”

“No, you have it, Studge.”

We are ten days into the trip and the repetition of tripping lunches, not to mention too much sun and a long morning in the boat are all starting to take their toll on my appetite. We pack up the wannigan and slip back onto the water, heading south to Great Slave Lake. We are on the Beaulieu River in the Northwest Territories and the afternoon is warm and nearly windless. Its one of those days up here where you look at the sky again after an hour and see exactly the same cloud formation in the same place. The next three hours will see us across the ten miles of Watta Lake so we settle into our rhythm as the canoe slides over the glassy surface. I am paddling in the bow, my eyes closed to the reflection of the sun on the water and the post-lunch stupor beginning to take up residence in my brain. After 25 years and hundreds of thousands of strokes, no conscious thought of the process is required. Reach forward, but not too far. Slide the paddle through the surface tension, matching the pace of the boat. Pull, then follow through on the glide and then start it all over again. And again and again and again……

My eyes pop open and my first thought is the realization that I’ve been sleeping; and not just for a few seconds, either. Next is surprise at the fact that I’m still paddling and in perfect rhythm no less. I steal a peek back at Studge and see that he has no idea I’d checked out for awhile.

We travel on and as I reflect on the experience I begin to understand something. A chiropractor by trade, I work with the stuff of nerves and patterns, searching for the frequency of adaptation in the body. When I paddled and dozed, I was playing out a basic truth; that life is expressed as an infinite number of wave patterns. In mammals, some examples of this are the contraction and dilation of the heart, the rise and fall of respiration, the pulsing of cerebro-spinal fluid and the peristalsis of the intestine. Even the time-line from conception to death follows a single wave pattern. In nature, the repeating cycle of high pressure systems alternating with low pressure, the movement of water from the sky to the surface and back and the cycle of the seasons are some of the seemingly endless variations of this universal motion.

For me, paddling has become one of these life frequencies. There are days deep in a trip when the cycle of the paddle stroke makes me feel so whole and perfectly right that I imagine it to be akin to what a buddhist monk experiences after years of being “present” from meditation and fasting. The rhythm begins to sustain and enable me not unlike the rhythms elemental in nature. It is so deeply rooted in my core that, under the right circumstances consciousness would appear to be optional. The inner beat begins to act as a bridge to my awareness of the subtleties and infinite variations of the rhythms all around me in this remarkable place.

The undulation of a grayling as it glides upstream in a shallow section of the river, the powerful winging of the bald eagle as it takes off from the bank ahead, intent on leading us down the next section of water, the rows of waves stretching to the horizon on one of the big lakes and the rhythmic sound of their breaking on the rocky shore, the vibration of the wings of a dragonfly as it perches on the gunwhale of the canoe, poised for flight. And over everything, this dream-like hum which seems the very frequency of the land itself, binding it all together.

I come back here time and again to simultaneously find and lose myself in the embrace of this place. Deepak Chopra says that all addictions are really just our attempt to re-discover pure joy. If so, I must be a canoe-tripping junkie, catching the waves again and again.

“Pasta or rice pilaf tonight, Studge?”

Stuart M. Grey

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Blue-green Algae

November 13th, 2009 — 9:02pm
Super Blue Green® Omega Sun® is the heart of the algae with the cell wall carefully removed via our special separation process. Omega Sun is an abundant source of raw materials for enhancing activity in the brain, the most nutrient-demanding organ in the body. The amino acids found in Omega Sun are the building blocks of the healthy nerve cells and neurotransmitters vital for proper brain function. Omega Sun also provides essential omega-3 fatty acids (which may be limited in the vegetarian diet) necessary for cardiovascular health. Omega Sun helps maintain normal, healthy blood chemistry—Omega Sun feeds the blood that feeds the brain. Each capsule or tablet contains 250 mg of Aphanizomenon flos-aquae.

Omega Sun Capsules: Blue-green algae (Aph. flos-aquae), vegetarian capsules (plant fiber, water).
Omega Sun Tablets: Blue-green algae (Aph. flos-aquae), croscarmellose sodium, magnesium stearate.

Suggested Use
Four capsules/tablets, or as needed, each day. You may wish to start by taking one with meals and gradually increase based on your individual needs.
Keep in a cool, dry place.

Nature’s Extraordinary GiftAlgae is the basis of the entire food chain—the foundational nutrient source for creating and renewing all life on earth. Aphanizomenon flos-aquae is the crème de la crème of all algae, one of the planet’s most powerful foods. Tucked away in the Cascade Mountains of Southern Oregon, fed by a network of mountain streams and springs, anchored in deep volcanic soil and 35 feet of mineral-rich sediment, Upper Klamath Lake is one of nature’s most miraculous nutrition resources of Aphanizomenon flos-aquae. This single- celled organism is richly endowedwith a vast array of easily assimilated nutrients including: essential fatty acids, active enzymes, vitamins, amino acids, minerals, proteins, complex sugars, and phytonutrients.

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Sacro-Occipital Technique

November 13th, 2009 — 8:54pm


What does SOT stand for?

SOT stands for Sacro Occipital Technique (or Technic). “Sacro” means “related to, or associated with,” the sacrum. The sacrum is the foundation for the spine. The sacrum is often called the tail bone though this is not exactly correct. “Occipital” means “related to or associated with the occiput. Occiput means “the back of the head”. So, SOT is a method of normalizing the relationship between the foundation of the spine and the top of the spine. It is this relationship and how these two bones get along with one another, that has been proven to be so important in the normal functioning of the brain and spinal cord.

The word “Technic” is another way of spelling “technique”. Either word means “the way to get the job done, scientifically and in a short period of time”.

How is SOT different than ordinary chiropractic?

SOT (Sacro Occipital Technique) is composed of highly accurate and effective procedures. Dr. Major B. DeJarnette spent most of his life conducting clinical investigation into what works in chiropractic and what makes chiropractic work. Many of the experiments he first tried on himself so that he was aware of the results first hand. He also recruited others to be patients while he tested the procedures. By means of these repeated, peer-reviewed tests, he determined the true nature of the spinal subluxation* and how it could most efficiently be corrected. He also determined when the correction of the spinal subluxation was not enough and devised visceral manipulation procedures. Visceral procedures are used to help normalize organ function without the use of drugs or surgery.

SOT also recognizes the important role of normal cranial function in health and disease. The cranial bones and other cranial structures can cause central nervous system problems that are often overlooked or ignored by most other chiropractic systems.

*Spinal subluxation: A disorder of the spinal, pelvic or cranial bones which is interfering with, or prohibits the correction of, the secretion, fluctuation and absorption of cerebro spinal fluid.

Exactly what function of the body does SOT correct?

SOT concerns itself primarily with the cranial sacral respiratory mechanism. This is a wavelike oscillation in the covering of the brain and spinal cord. Although quite subtle, this motion is essential for the normal functioning of the brain and spinal cord, and thereby the rest of the nervous system and the rest of the body. It functions much like breathing air, in that it has a cyclic tightening and loosening phase. Ordinary respiration – breathing air in and out – also affects and can be used to normalize cranial sacral respiratory action. The normal function of the cranial sacral respiratory mechanism is recognized as a primary function of life in the body and must be normal if all functions of the body are to be normal.

Like other chiropractic techniques, SOT also corrects abnormal spinal mechanics and any associated nerve problems. These can include back pain, headaches, dizziness, arm and leg pains.

Through the use of Chiropractic Manipulative Reflex Techniques, your SOT practitioner can help normalize organ function in your body, including high blood pressure, digestive problems, urinary problems, toxicity, female reproductive dysfunction, etc. The list goes on and on.

Many head-related symptoms can also be treated by your SOT practitioner, including, but not limited to:

  • Vertigo
  • TMJ
  • Headache
  • Visual disturbances
  • Ear infections, etc.

Will it make the pain go away?

Getting rid of pain is important. At all times, during an SOT adjustment, the comfort of the patient is considered. But eliminating or killing the pain is not the main goal of a chiropractic SOT adjustment. The true goal of an adjustment, and particularly an SOT adjustment, is to normalize the function of the entire body. The central nervous system – the brain and spinal cord – is the avenue of approach. The brain and spinal cord are used for this purpose because all studies of the human body show that their function is the primary function of the body. They act to control all other functions of the body as well. So, normalization of this function is the primary goal. As this goal is obtained, the pain will go away. But elimination of pain is simply a side effect of normalizing the cranial sacral respiratory mechanism.

Will I have to keep coming back?

SOT is proven to obtain lasting results in a short time. These results are demonstrated as reduced pain and improved function in all parts of the body. A patient just starting with SOT care will often notice such a great improvement in a short time that they will feel they are completely healed. But with the precise diagnostic methods of SOT, problems in the body can be detected even though they are not causing pain. So it is a wise investment on the patient’s part to stay with a program of care which detects problems before they start to hurt. The old saying attributed to Benjamin Franklin applies: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of Cure.”

Is this a proven method?

SOT has been shown to be clinically effective in thousands of offices worldwide. This method of health care is constantly improving and finding new proof of it’s effectiveness. Many of the other chiropractic techniques use principles that were originally discovered and written by Dr. DeJarnette. The validity of Dr. DeJarnette’s research is proven every day by the practice of these techniques. As specialists in Sacro Occipital Technic, the chiropractors listed on this website are trained in SOT and diligently apply all of their skill, knowledge, and judgment to every adjustment they give. Their effort is to apply SOT as Dr. DeJarnette developed it. This is the proven method and the one that is most often found to be effective.

Will it make me healthier?

Yes. Any SOT adjustment will improve the functioning of the body, which is health. This improvement may not be readily apparent to the doctor or the patient, but it is there. Since it is very difficult to predict what is going to happen with one’s health, it is doubly difficult to say that a particular procedure prevented a bad occurrence in one’s health. But, clinical experience and scientific investigation over the years have shown that SOT is in the forefront of those procedures which improve health.

Does SOT require nutritional changes?

Often. Any effort to restore health in this day and age on this planet requires improving nutritional intake. This is due to what is called “overconsumptive malnutrition.” Our current food supply is structured in such a way that people eat a lot of empty calories. So, specific nutritional supplements and changes are usually necessary.

Does the adjustment cause pain in the body?

No. SOT works to a great extent by specifically positioning the body to use the weight of the body to correct the body. This occurs because of an interaction between the specific position the body is in and the motion of the body caused by normal breathing. Many times the patient will feel very relaxed during the adjustment and even take a nap. There is some pain when specific points of correction are located. This is more like a “good pain” than a “bad pain” and serves mostly to let the doctor and patient know that a point needing correction has been found.

Is there a chance of being hurt by the SOT adjustment?

The chance of injury during any chiropractic adjustment is very, very small. Recent research has shown the likelihood to be less than one in 6,000,000. Most of the injuries which have occurred have involved the neck and happened during non-SOT visits.

The average chiropractor pays about $1,000 to $2,000 per year for malpractice insurance. A medical doctor can pay $1,000 per week for malpractice insurance. This gives an accurate indication of the relative danger involved.

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November 13th, 2009 — 11:50am


wonderful: Dr. Grey has perhaps the best bedside manner of any doctor I’ve had the pleasure of visiting in my life! He is extremely knowledgable about traditional medicine in addition to his knowledge about his own field. He is interested in all aspects of a patient’s life in order to pronounce the most thorough diagnosis possible, and works diligently to correct the problems he diagnoses. I had suffered from acid reflux for YEARS, and after 4 months with him, it was almost completely unnoticeable. His rates are affordable, and he works to make you better, not to make you dependent on him for further visits. I would recommend him to anyone, even if you’ve had previous unpleasant or unsuccessful experiences with a chiropractic doctor.     K. Vroomin 

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