Everett Chiropractic Center Blog

May 21, 2020

Interesting Times: The Governor’s Proclamation #20-24.1

[This went out to our patient list today. I thought it might be useful to you as well.]

This week the Governor’s Proclamation 20-24.1 reduced restrictions on health services, allowing more clinically necessary care, including more clinically necessary chiropractic care. Earlier Federal decrees indicated that Chiropractors are part of the “essential critical infrastructure workforce.” So our office has been open for business during regular hours, and patients feel comfortable coming into the office, confident that they are safe. Home ergonomics, gardening, auto accidents, job-related injuries, and a fall have all kept us feeling quite “essential” during the past couple of months.

The Governor’s newest Proclamation as well as other pronouncements from the Governor, the State Department of Health, the County Health Department, and the Mayor of the Everett included recommendations and guidelines regarding hygiene, distancing, screening and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). Now, in the office, there are signs, and wipes, hand sanitizer, and (more) ‘no-touch’ wastebaskets, things that are conspicuous, and a lot that is not.

I am writing to reassure you that all of these measures, considered ‘best practices’, are routine protocols in our office. So when you call for an appointment, do not be surprised if we ask the screening questions; when you come in do not be surprised when we take your temperature; you probably won’t get any hugs or handshakes (smile – I know, you do not usually get a hug:-); PPE will be apparent, and we’ll be standing further apart than usual.

Like I teach the tai chi students, all the awareness and skills training, as well as the weapons (PPE) training, is to put you in a place of calm and confidence – even if surrounded by chaos. Safety. Security. Self-defense. It is all a spectrum. Feel free to call if you have questions or want to make an appointment: (425) 348-5207.

In health,


P.S. – And for more on these “interesting times” see prior Blog Posts beginning March 1st. There are more than a dozen that are germane (well, and a thousand others that might also be:-)

May 5, 2020

The Activator Method

“Scientific” Standards

Now that everyone is an authority, and everyone believes that their logic and rational is “scientific” and reasonable (acting or recommending – think Policy pronouncements – based on the best available “science” and out of an “abundance of caution”), we should all be that much more careful who we actually trust. More often than not we are confronted with the limitations of science.

Unfortunately, the more you dial down the scientific microscope on a subject or issue, the less its claims hold up to scrutiny: witness the mask-or-no-mask debate that currently rages. Here one element of the international chiropractic “scientific” community takes issue with statements put out by another element within the profession – they do include a link to authoritative recommendations on mask wearing too, by the way.

Critical thinking is critical; having a good idea what a scientific thought process would look like is essential; and recognizing a logical fallacy when it is offered is just as necessary. Put all of that together with good quality, objective, science and you have the ability to make really well informed decisions about personal choices and about policy. This convergence is rarely seen, however, and when has personal choice and policy not been influenced heavily by politics and profit motives among the vocal proponents? And when have we, or they for that matter, not gotten emotional about it?

In the end you have to decide what you will believe and what you will do – in the absence of scientific certainty. Here we are usually talking about what promotes health – usually beginning with what provides relief from back, neck and headache pain. We offer what evidence we come across, both about what does not work, and what does work as far as we can tell. In this country you do not have to believe it. And you can choose whatever you like. But who can you trust? And how far? When the limits of science have been exhausted, we should face up to that; then make the best decision we know how to at the time.

April 24, 2020

A Question of Numbers

We are all being asked to trust numbers: numbers tested, tests positive verses negative, cases confirmed, recovered number, and numbers of terminal cases. I think we should be less focused on numbers (that can not be trusted anyway), and pay more attention to the principles.

Here are a bunch of numbers regarding the Spanish Flu and chiropractic care. From what I can tell, no one would consider it scientific – and not just because of its age. But then anyone who looks would consider little done in health care at that time scientific, but that is another story.

What I think is important is to realize that while, nowadays, it is much more common for people to say wonderful things about chiropractic because of the results that they got with back pain, neck pain or headaches, in the past it was different. In the past sick people became desperate for results, got what help they could from modern mainstream medicine, and then went to see a chiropractor – and sometimes they got good results, so chiropractic got the credit.

Behind all of this is the big picture: some bugs (and non-bug viruses, of course) are bad, very bad. They might kill you. And… it is ALWAYS better to be in adjustment and fully functional – especially when the body is fighting a bug battle. It is a matter of risk factors (being subluxated is a risk factor for ill health by whatever description) and resistance. Decreasing risk factors will support an increase in resistance.

And thinking people do understand this: what are the primary recommendations for dealing with the current crisis: all of the same health-generating recommendations we are always giving, for the same reason – it promotes HEALTH (our speciality!). And, of course, tune up your hygeine and sanitation practices, keep your distance, etc.

Whether it is breathing, bracing, bending and lifting, or diet and nutrition, chiropractic adjustments, and exercise, we do what we do to promote health and wellness. It is useful when you are well; it is even more useful when you are sick.



February 17, 2020

Seattle King County Free Clinic (SKCC)

A good time was had by all! (Here is the SKCC site!)


December 21, 2019

Your Brain Needs Exercise!



December 20, 2019

Zero Drop

From an email from Xero Shoes…

“It’s just a matter of time until everyone thinks like you do.

What I mean is that you’re on the leading edge when it comes to understanding the value of letting your feet do what’s natural — bending, flexing, and FEELING.

But when we see a mainstream publication like Men’s Health promotes an aspect of natural movement, we know it’s just a matter of time until what you already know becomes “normal.”

Here’s what they said, in favor of the philosophy behind one of Xero Shoes’ design features: not elevating your heel:

“Unlike four-legged animals, us bipeds didn’t evolve to stand or move about solely on the balls of our feet. We’re strongest, most powerful, and most stable when our entire foot is aligned, so when you elevate your heel above your toes, both your ankle mobility and overall stability take a hit.

That’s why “zero-drop” shoes can make such a difference in the gym. In shoe parlance, “drop” refers to the angle between your heel and your toes, so zero-drop shoes have just that—zero angle. Your heels and toes are level, just like they would be if you were hoofing around in bare feet. Zero-drops take some getting used to if your feet and legs are conditioned to raised-heel shoes, but many people who switch notice a boost in performance right away, especially in exercises that require good ankle mobility, such as the squat.”

Read the rest here: Men’s Health Magazine, then, whether you lift or run or walk or hike…”

October 2, 2019

Shoulder Pain?

I am probably the only guy you will ever hear of who recommends not sleeping on your side. I routinely recommend patients break that habit as soon as possible; if you wait until you are in your fifties or sixties you will not be able to break the habit. If you work on it while young you may have a few weeks of miserable sleep, but after that you will never again sleep on your side.

Why not sleep on your side? Because one of two things that are bad will happen if you do: either sleeping on your side will cause neck, and/or upper back, and/or shoulder pain, or some day you will have a neck, upper back or shoulder pain episode. In either case, then sleeping on your side will complicate any kind of recovery – it may prevent it.

So, here is something that might help if and when you fall into one of the above categories: https://medcline.com/medclinelp/?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=search-brand&gclsrc=aw.ds&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIo8TL7vT95AIVKB-tBh0oSgZpEAAYASAAEgLiMfD_BwE

Patients of ours who have tried it have benefited greatly. I hope that you do too!

September 27, 2019

“Your eyes are in excellent condition.”

That comment was followed by, “You do not need glasses.”

It had been over five years since I had my eyes checked, so I went. What she meant by not needing glasses is that I do not need ‘prescription’ lens glasses: readers will do fine. (Last time I was in I ended up with bifocal prescription lens glasses…)

At 63, eyes maybe better than five years ago, certainly not worse, that made my day.

(The doctor mentioned my age bracket. I asked the upper end of the bracket. She said about 65. She explained that eye sight usually worsens from the early 40s to about 65, but then does not worsen after that. So, if I can hold out a few more years…)

I thought of all of those people who say to me that JuicePlus+ is too expensive, or that the alkaline water they drink is like Kangen water, or that getting chiropractic care just isn’t a priority.

It isn’t just one thing, of course, but the accumulation of many small and not-so-small healthy choices that make the difference. That and being blessed:-)

I will keep taking my JuicePlus+.

September 13, 2019

Ergonomics: Workstation 101 (The Desk)

This YouTube video is pretty good on almost all counts: there is nothing wrong with the recommended exercises, or advice to ‘just get up’. He starts at the desk; I think it makes more sense to start at the floor (feet, then knees, then hips). In general, most people will do fine with his recommendations. If you are still having trouble then see a chiropractor. (I would say that wouldn’t I?)

September 12, 2019

More Active, More Better (Carrots and Sticks)

According to this new research you are five times more likely to die an early death if you are not active (the stick).

This is not new news, it is more news – same theme. ‘Eat less, move more’ has been around a while. ‘Sitting is the new smoking’ has been around a while. It is a fact that every Blue Zone population on the planet (the folks who figured out health and longevity, not to mention happiness), has known for a while.

What you do seems to matter less and less; the authorities are simply trying to get people to move more. Some people suggest that there is nothing they can think of that they would want to do, activity-wise. That is hard to believe.

As a fitness fanatic for over forty years, one of my favorite parts of helping patients get active is coming up with clever choices that fit within their range of physical capacities, and are something that they can and would like to do (they are willing to do). They may still sabotage the plan, but I am not a psychologist.

The beauty of physical activity is that if a person does get active, happy chemicals will take over (the carrot) and they will eventually develop the habit. That is the best kept secret of the healthy, happy, heavy breathers: happy chemicals. Don’t tell anyone!

September 6, 2019

“I am no longer in pain…” FOUR ISSUES

The question was “Does it ‘make sense’ to continue” with ongoing chiropractic care?

That question is in the mind of many patients, once they feel better; we sometimes get to have mature conversations about it. I had that conversation with a patient today.

First it is understood that patients almost always present with pain (or some symptom) as their “problem”. We try to distinguish between symptom and cause: as chiropractors we address their function – look for and correct a condition (the subluxation complex) causing their pain. This is part of us doing our job to (1) inform them so that they can make informed choices, and (2) help them understand chiropractic (it is not a “medical” practice), it is different!

Second, whether or not it “makes sense” is not my call. Once a patient is educated, they need to decide on their priorities. As the professional health care provider I have to give them information that helps them with that, but my recommendations is as far as that goes. We providers have to be Ok with whatever decision the patient makes, I think, and to honor that, “love them the same” is what I always say. Not everyone agrees, but that approach has many benefits for the patient, short and long term.

Third, an understanding of what it means to “continue”  with ongoing chiropractic care needs to be clarified. They what to know because of money, or time/inconvenience usually. Since my care is based on how they function, the frequency of visits is adjusted as they improve: they come in less and less often. A visit once each month or every three months rests a lot easier in the mind of the average patient trying to manage their issues (priorities). This provides another opportunity to explain that for them to do the recommended home exercise is to hold their adjustments longer, hence they can comfortably go longer between visits. It is not just logical, with experimentation patients figure that out for themselves.

Fourth, finally, this conversation often times takes place over many years of recurring episodes of pain, and in many different ways. It really can take a while for patients to believe that the doctor has their best interest in mind when making recommendations: it is perhaps rare in their experience. The beauty of being around a while (35 years now) is that the choice people make on their path have consequences that are all quite predictable. It is predictable that pain will improve rather quickly with chiropractic care (step one). Taking care of the spine will help keep the pain and progressive degenerative decay at bay (step two). The cause of health and the cause of ill health are the choices in front of each of us. The numbers of options do change over time, but as some wise and famous person once said, “It is never too late to start heading in the right direction”.

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