Dr. Christina E. West, DC, QME, IDE, BFA
Chiropractic Family Care
14 Bryson Drive – Sutter Creek, CA 95685
Also available in Rancho Murieta & Half Moon Bay 1-888-838-5337
Specific Spinal Adjustments
Adjusting the spine is the cornerstone of chiropractic. We utilize multiple techniques in order to provide the greatest service to our patients. Along with the traditional manual adjustments, Dr. West may use special tables or adjusting instruments for infants, children, and pregnant women, with the “Gentle Approach.”
Diagnostics During Examination
The first step is for Dr. West to conduct an exam consisting of a consultation and X-rays, when needed. From this Dr. West can assess your complete situation and clarify the cause of any problems or future problems. We use the newest, state-of-the-art High Frequency X-ray that emits 60% less radiation than standard X-rays. It is a very safe and dependable tool to assist in diagnosis, even when children’s injuries and conditions may require it. “If you have spent 20 minutes in the sun, you have had more radiation than this equipment produces during a standard examination,” says Dr. West. She routinely does X-Rays as a service for other doctors in the area.
Computerized testing replaces X-ray when it is not required. Computerized Paraspinal Surface Electromyography (SEMG) is a painless, noninvasive test that can help characterize abnormal muscle activity of muscles surrounding the spine. This can be associated with subluxation or other forms of spinal dysfunction. Many times subluxations do not create pain or discomfort until they have progressed to an advanced stage. The SEMG helps Dr. West to detect these problems before they become symptomatic.
Computerized studies track heat distribution to determine hot (red) areas that are hyperemic (increased flow of blood to particular areas that are inflamed). A rolling thermal scanner uses “non-contact” thermal sensors that contain very sensitive infrared cameras that detect the temperature of an area on either side of the spine. A thermogram can help to diagnose soft tissue injuries or other forms of spinal dysfunction.
Applied Kinesiology (AK)
Applied Kinesiology (AK), developed by Dr. George Goodheart in 1964, implements bioenergetic feedback through testing the strength of various muscles in the body. This highly customized, in-depth system of analysis allows the doctor to assess various aspects of a patient’s state of health. Dr. West will evaluate and treat postural and muscular imbalances; neurovascular and neurolymphatic points; subluxation; cranial-sacral movement; acupuncture meridians and nutritional status. This is a highly functional system which focuses on the patient’s whole system of the Triad of Health: physical, chemical and emotional. AK allows the skilled health practitioner to evaluate functional illness, which typically precedes disease. AK gives insight and discernment into the underlying causes and solutions to many functional health problems.
Certain types of physical therapy are used at Chiropractic Family Care. Depending on your history and examination findings, your doctor may add a regimen of physical therapy modalities designed to help the healing process of muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
Cold Laser Therapy
The Erchonia Cold Laser device is the first to gain FDA approval for the non-surgical treatment of the body. It is being used widely in the NFL and by the USPS tour de France team chiropractor.
When an injury occurs, the cells of the body are damaged and fail to function within normal parameters. Low level lasers penetrate deeply and comfortably into the skin and work by restoring this abnormal cellular function. Physiologic effects include improved metabolism, circulation and tissue healing.
Laser therapy may be useful to you if you have any of the following: tendonitis, sprain-strains, scar tissue, autoimmune diseases, chronic or acute pain, carpal tunnel syndrome. For more information on this therapy go to erchonia.com.
EB Pro – Energy Balance System
The Energy Balance System, or EB Pro, was designed and developed to restore the body’s energy and balance while facilitating and aiding in its natural detoxification process. The Energy Balance System has been proven in clinical trials to balance and restore the body’s Ph and electromagnetic energy. Our world is silently bombarding our physical system on these levels.
The Energy Balance System implements use direct current similar to that of the human body to create an ionic field. The patient places their feet in the bioenergetic water (foot bath) to receive the flow of ions which increases cellular function. Studies have shown that more cellular ATP is produced during treatment which enhances the cells to work and detoxify at a higher rate. It assists in Heavy Metal Detoxification; therefore the body returns to a state of ease. You may benefit from the EB Pro if you suffer from: allergies, chronic pain, multiple chemical sensitivities, inflammation or edema.
Interferential Microcurrent Therapy
Interferential microcurrent therapy is a therapeutic treatment that promotes soft tissue healing and pain relief. Tiny electrical impulses are placed over the injured tissue and the waves intersect below the skin to create a low-frequency stimulation. This stimulation promotes the body’s secretion of endorphins, nature’s pain relievers. The patient experiences a “pins and needles” sensation, or the frequency is reduced to feel “nothing”, while the current works to reduce pain on a cellular level, decrease local swelling, promote muscle tone, restore normal movements and accelerate the healing process.
Ice and Cryotherapy Therapy
Ice for injuries, or Cryotherapy, is employed at Chiropractic Family Care. A common mistake that people often make when dealing with low back pain, sprains, strains or other acute injuries is to apply heat to the area in an attempt to reduce the pain and inflammation. Unfortunately, heat in the early stages of injury may have exactly the opposite effect on damaged tissues and increase symptoms rather than alleviate them. For this reason, ice is always recommended in the early stages of injury, particularly in the early critical 24-48 hour period when swelling and hemorrhage are of primary concern.
Ice is inexpensive, available and adaptable to your joint areas. The benefits of applying ice to injured tissues include the reduction of edema or swelling, which when uncontrolled, slows healing through the stiffening of joints and decreased tissue perfusion; a decrease in hemorrhage into surrounding structures and analgesia. Studies show the most significant benefits of icing are realized within the first 30 minutes and these benefits are the direct result of cold-induced vasoconstriction and its inhibiting effect on blood flow, nerve conduction and muscle spasm. Studies show that the combination of ice and compression result in the most significant reduction of swelling. Ice is routinely used after chiropractic adjustment to aid the healing process.
Also, don’t forget that drinking water is important in the healing process. Proper hydration ensures the removal of cellular and digestive waste and the circulation of nutrients to cells throughout the body. Although icing an injury is generally a safe and effective way to increase healing and decrease pain, there are some instances when ice may not be a good treatment option. Previously existing conditions such as Raynaud’s, Diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, impaired sensation, circulatory disorders, fragile skin such as is often found in the elderly, or cold hypersensitivity all pose potential hazards and contraindications to the use of ice. Care should also be taken if using ice over the carotid arteries in the neck as heartbeat and breathing may be affected.
So when is heat appropriate? Generally speaking, heat is best utilized when Dr. West specifically educates you, if your condition is in a chronic stage. Many practitioners believe that, even at this stage, ice remains the better choice and heat is best used only in chronic or arthritic conditions or as preparation for a stretching program. Always consult Dr. West first.
Intersegmental Traction is a physiotherapy to relax, soften, and make the muscles and tendons more flexable between the vertebral segments of the spine. Dr. West may utilize this modality before or after an adjustment, according to your condition. Many people benefit from this as stress management as well as increasing their range of motion. It assists the chiropractic adjustment to be more effective and long lasting.
Dr. West offers, at any age of your child, to do a Scoliosis Screen to prevent future abnormalities in childrens’ growth. She has screened 7th and 8th grade students at Cunha Middle School for the Cabrillo Unified School District. Dr. West also sees children needing a physical exam for participation in sports activities.
Dr. West has been doing CranioSacral Therapy since 1987, and has spent hundreds of hours with Dr. John Upledger and the Upledger Institute. CranioSacral Therapy strengthens your body, to take better care of you. It is a gentle approach that Dr. West implements to alleviate a range of illnesses, pain and dysfunction, especially with newborns, infants and children. The CranioSacral System consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surrounds and protects the brain and spinal cord. It extends from the bones of the skull, face and mouth, which make up the cranium, down to the sacrum or tailbone area. Dr. West tests for restrictions in the craniosacral system using pressure no more than the weight of a nickel.
A Certified Massage Therapist’s trained and caring touch can have profound effects on your physical, mental, and emotional states. Massage provides a collaborative health option to alleviate the soft tissue discomfort associated with everyday stresses. Massage has an effect on the circulatory, musculoskeletal, lymphatic, and nervous system. With the introduction of hydrotherapy, trigger point, joint play and remedial exercise, the practice of a massage treatment has been extended to take part in the healing of a variety of illnesses via a relaxation response. This helps re-educate the body to hold the chiropractic adjustment.
Learning how to use your body properly is an essential part of the chiropractic approach to health. Throughout your chiropractic care, you will be instructed in the proper use of an exercise program, custom-tailored to your individual needs. These exercises become an integral part, not only of getting well, but of staying well.
Simply stated, “You are what you eat.” Often, the difference between regaining health and remaining ill is the patient’s eating and drinking habits. During your initial consultation, Dr. West will ask specific questions to determine if you require special nutritional advice. It is a critically important part of your chiropractic care.
At Chiropractic Family Care, we offer state-of-the-art chiropractic care at fair and equitable fees. Our dedicated and well-trained staff is ready, willing, and able to assist you in deciding which financial option best suits you personally.