Trigger point referral patterns.

Myofascial trigger points form in a muscle due to overload stress. A portion of muscle fibers lock up into a knot. Once formed these points will irritate sensory nerves that are in proximity to the knot. When this happens,

trigger points have the capacity to refer pain along specific distributions or patterns that are well mapped out. sometimes pain may be felt at a great distance away from the actual point itself.

Trigger points

Trigger Points in muscle and other soft tissue are one of the most common causes of a wide variety of pain and dysfunction, including (but not limited to):


• Achy persistent pain
• Severe local pain
• Arm / leg pain
• Back pain
• Radiating pain
• Weakness
• Stiffness

• Pain resulting from a medical condition, such as
– Migraines
– Sciatica
– TMJ dysfunctions
– Arthritis
– Fibromyalgia
– Carpal tunnel syndrome
– Soft tissue injuries
– And more…

Chiropractic as THE alternative to Opioids.

In 2015, two million Americans had a substance abuse disorder involving prescription pain relievers; with more than 20,000 overdose deaths related to these drugs. In the past decade, death rates and substance use rates quadrupled in parallel to sales of prescription pain relievers.

Chronic LBP is a primary generator for opioid prescriptions. This year, both JAMA and Annals of Internal Medicine have published and supported new clinical practice guidelines that recommend prescribing spinal manipulation over medication for LBP patients.

“For acute, subacute, or chronic low back pain, physicians and patients initially utilize spinal manipulation and delay pharmacologic management.”

Research shows that low back pain patients who undergo chiropractic care have improved outcomes with lower rates of opioid use, surgery, and overall healthcare costs.

Not surprisingly, various governing bodies, including the FDA, CDC, and 37 State Attorney General’s, have concurred that physicians and healthcare decision makers should consider non- pharmacologic therapy for LBP patients. In fact, the 2018 Joint Commission guidelines mandate that hospitals include conservative options for chronic musculoskeletal pain management, specifically naming chiropractic as a potential option.

Chiropractic care is not a replacement for traditional medical treatment of LBP, rather a complementary tool to integrate within your current management paradigm. We hope that you will continue to consider our office for those cases that may be favorably served by conservative manual therapy. We are grateful for your confidence and will work hard to maintain your trust.

City Planning Could Reduce Deadly Diseases.

Using computer models, researchers studied several factors that could affect a city’s quality of life, such as how far people must travel to shop; availability and safety of bike paths; parking costs; and access to public transportation. The researchers estimate that by reducing car use by 10% and reducing the distance to public transportation by 30%, cities could expect the rates of heart disease to drop 15% and type 2 diabetes to drop by 11%.

The Lancet, September 2016


Canada’s Pain Crisis

In a nation of only 36 million people, over 5 million people turned to opioid use for their pain despite the availability of better options. Opioids should never be the first step in pain management; preventing overuse takes education of both the public who are using and the professionals prescribing these drugs.

At Aberdeen Chiropractic we are proud to be part of the solution to Canada’s opioid crisis by providing safe, effective care for back pain, neck pain and headaches. Our goal is to assess, correct and prevent your pain with a variety of interventions including Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Laser, Exercise Rehabilitation and Trigger Point Therapy.


Pain Crisis

Can We Prevent Carpel Tunnel?

Carpal Tunnel


Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is the most common of the many “entrapment neuropathies”— nerve pinches in the arms or legs—likely because we use our hands and fingers repetitively for long time frames at work and during many of our hobbies. In addition, the wrist is a very complicated joint because it’s not a simple ball-and-socket or hinge, like the hip, elbow, or knee.

The wrist is made up of eight small “carpal” bones that are all shaped very differently and fit together a bit like a puzzle. These eight bones are lined up in two rows of four bones that form the “roof“ of the tunnel.

The shape of the tunnel changes with different activities, and the contents within the tunnel have to accommodate for this. Nine of the tendons that allow the hand to move the fingers also travel through the tunnel. Look at the palm-side of your wrist as you wiggle your fingers. See all the activity going on there? The median nerve travels through the tunnel as well, just under the “floor”, which is a very strong ligament that stretches from the pinky to the thumb-side of the tunnel.

Virtually ANY condition that increases the pressure inside the already tightly packed tunnel can create CTS symptoms like numbness, tingling, burning, etc. Over time, grip strength may weaken, causing one to accidentally drop objects.

To add to the causation list of CTS, conditions like obesity, pregnancy, diabetes, hypothyroid, rheumatoid arthritis (and other “arthropathies”), taking birth control pills (BCPs), and more can cause CTS without any increase in hand/wrist activities!
So HOW can we prevent CTS?


First, consider your job and your “workstation.” There are ergonomic keyboard and mouse options that can help you maintain a “neutral” wrist posture. If you have to bend your wrist a lot to do your work tasks—like placing items in a package, assembly work, etc.—see if you can change the angle of the package or assembly set up that allows your wrist to be straight, NOT BENT! Also, sit/stand up straight, chin tucked back, and DON’T SLOUCH!

A “night splint” forces the wrist to stay straight and can REALLY help! Managing your weight and health (manage your diabetes, thyroid, and medications that increase swelling like BCPs) is VERY important! There are also natural anti-inflammatory vitamins and herbs like ginger, turmeric, and bioflavonoid you may want to consider—your doctor of chiropractic can help you with this!

Chiropractors can manage CTS very well and can frequently help patients avoid the need for a surgical release. The “KEY” is to not wait—get treated early on!


What is wrong with my shoulder?



Shoulder pain is a REALLY common problem that can arise from many causes. There are actually several joints that make up the shoulder, so shoulder injuries can be quite complex!
Probably the most common source of shoulder pain arises from the muscle tendons and the bursa—the fluid-filled sacs that lubricate, cushion, and protect the sliding tendons near their attachment to bone. The rotator cuff is made up from a group of four muscles and their connecting tendons. Typically, when the tendons tear, the bursa swells and “impingement” occurs. When this happens, it’s very painful to raise the arm up from the side.
The term “strain” applies to injuries of the muscles and tendons and are classified as mild, moderate, or severe (some refer to this as first, second, and third degree tears), depending on the amount of tissue that has torn. Overexertion, overuse, sports injuries, dislocation, fracture, frozen shoulder, joint instability, and pinched nerves can all give rise to shoulder pain.
The diagnosis of what’s actually causing a patient’s shoulder pain is often determined by the history of how the injury occurred, or the “mechanism of injury.” This is followed up by measuring the range of motion and performing provocative tests to see which positions bother the shoulder the most. A doctor may use X-rays to assess for fracture/dislocation and an MRI to assess muscle tendon tears, labral tears (a rim of cartilage surrounding the glenoid fossa or cup of the ball & socket joint), and other soft tissue injuries.
People with jobs that require heavy lifting or repetitive pounding (carpenters and jack-hammer operators, for example), who play sports such as football and rugby, and those who smoke, have diabetes, and/or an overactive thyroid are at higher risk of injury. Because the shoulder joint is normally not very stable, MANY people tear their rotator cuff or injure their shoulder during their lifetime. One study found 17% of participants had full thickness rotator cuff tears (as opposed to partial tears). The researchers reported that age was an important determinant, as the incidence of full tears was only 6% in those less than 60 years old vs. 30% in those over 60! So obviously, this IS NOT an injury limited to the younger active person!
Outside of a medical emergency, patients should always try non-surgical treatment options first. Doctors of chiropractic offer the shoulder injury patient a non-surgical option that emphasizes exercise and self-management strategies in addition to manual manipulation, mobilization, and more. The most important message is BE PATIENT as these usually take time to manage, often up to a year.

Whiplash Injury? Get Help Now!



Should I seek treatment for whiplash right away?

Even though whiplash or whiplash associated disorders (WAD) is very common, it remains poorly understood. Recent studies report that up to 60% of people may still have pain six months after their injury. Why is that?
Investigations have shown there are changes in the muscle and muscle function in the neck and shoulder regions in chronic WAD patients. Symptoms often include balance problems as well as increased sensitivity to a variety of stimuli including pressure, light vibration, and temperature.
Interestingly, this hypersensitivity not only occurs in the injured area, but also in areas away from the neck such as the front of the lower leg or the shin bone. This can only be explained by some type of neurobiological processing of pain within the central nervous system, which includes the spinal cord and brain.
It’s not surprising that when pain continues for lengthy time frames, people with these symptoms may also experience psychological distress. The confusing thing is that not every WAD injury case has this “central sensitization” and when it’s present—its intensity is highly variable.
Current research into WAD is focused on the following: 1) developing better treatments in the early or acute whiplash injury stage with the goal to PREVENT development of these chronic symptoms; 2) determining what factors can PREDICT slower recovery following a WAD injury; 3) investigation into how the stress response associated with motor vehicle crashes influence pain, other symptoms and recovery, and how to best address and MANAGE the stress response; 4) research into the effect a WAD injury has on daily life function; and 5) developing improved assessment methods for healthcare providers so that EARLY treatments can be more targeted and effective.
A Swedish study is currently looking at the importance of reducing the acceleration of the occupant during an automobile collision by redesigning the body of the vehicle and its safety systems. In rear-end crashes, the main issue is to design a seat and head restraint that absorbs energy in a controlled way and gives support to the whole spine. In frontal crashes, the air bag, seat belt pretensioner, and load limiter must work together in a coordinated way to reduce the acceleration between the vertebrae of the spine and occupant.
What is known is that a “wait and watch” approach may NOT be appropriate in a lot of cases. It appears there is a relatively short window of time, the first three months, when treatment seems to be most effective. Doctors of chiropractic are trained to identify and treat these types of injuries, so PLEASE, don’t delay your initial visit—time is truly of the essence.  Don’t waste it!

Which Low Back Pain Treatment Is Best?



For patients with chronic low back pain (cLBP), treatment guidelines recommend a non-surgical approach as the FIRST-LINE treatment. Ideally, the goal would be to avoid an initial surgery unless it’s absolutely indicated. That means, unless there is loss of bowel or bladder control or retention (which represents a medical emergency) or if there is progressive neurological motor and sensory loss, one can safely avoid surgery and conservatively manage the condition.
Interestingly enough, a systematic review of the results from three randomized controlled studies carried out in Norway and the United Kingdom found the outcomes or results between the surgical fusion vs. non-surgical treatment of patients with cLBP showed NO DIFFERENCE at an 11-year follow-up!
Studies have shown chiropractic to be highly beneficial for acute and chronic low back pain cases.


In one study, researchers reviewed data on 72,326 cLBP patients in the Medicare system who received one of four possible treatment combinations between 2006 and 2012: 1) chiropractic only; 2) chiropractic followed by conventional medical care (CMC); 3) CMC followed by chiropractic; 4) CMC alone.
The research team found that chiropractic care alone (group 1) resulted in the lowest costs, and these patients had lower rates of back surgery and shorter episodes of care.
The group receiving CMC alone (group 4) had the highest costs, with the second and third groups being similar—both costing less and being more effective than CMC alone.
The conclusion of the study reads, “These findings support initial CMT [chiropractic manipulative therapy] use in the treatment of, and possibly broader chiropractic management of, older multiply-comorbid cLBP patients.”

Wellness/Prevention: Does Xylitol Prevent Tooth Decay?

Researchers have found that the available evidence on the effects of xylitol (a natural sugar substitute used in candy, gum, and toothpaste) is insufficient to prove it prevents tooth decay. The investigators found low-quality evidence that tooth decay was lower among children who used a fluoride toothpaste containing xylitol when compared with children who used a fluoride-only toothpaste. An analysis of the rest of the data covering other xylitol-containing products like xylitol syrup, lozenges, and tablets found little or no evidence the sugar substitute prevents tooth decay. The authors also highlighted the fact that several of the studies did not give sufficient information about xylitol’s side effects, such as bloating, diarrhea, and laxative effects. Cochrane Database Systematic Review, March 2015

Quote: “Trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit.” ~ Molière