Ever wondered why kids go through those notorious toddler tantrums or terrible two’s… It is actually very important to experience those toddler tantrums as you will soon realise.
To gain a better understanding of why we go through the toddler tantrums, you should know about different areas of the brain. We have 2 brain hemispheres… Left and Right.
The left side of the brain is responsible for controlling the right side of the body. It also helps us perform tasks of logic including science, maths and is largely responsible for language processing, for speaking and fine motor skills. The right side of the brain is responsible for the left side of the body. It helps with emotional recognition/expression, facial recognition, visual imagery and spatial awareness.
Between ages 1-3, blood flow to the brain is more dominant in the right hemisphere and after 3 years, this dominance shifts to the left hemisphere . The development of our brain in early childhood appears to correlate with emergence of functions of the dominant brain hemisphere, which is initially the right side (responsible for our emotional expression and regulation) and then in the left hemisphere.
So it is really important to go through the emotional ups and downs (within reason) up to 3 years of age as it is integral part of our overall brain development. The early years of human development help establish function of the brain and stressful experiences in early life can affect these different stages of development.
Different stressors can include physical, chemical, environmental and emotional stresses. If you are worried that stress could be affecting your child’s development, book in with Little Sprouts today so we can assess and help your child reach their fullest potential.
 Hugdahl, K. (2013). Visual-spatial information processing in the two hemispheres of the brain is dependent on the feature characteristics of the stimulus. Frontiers in neuroscience, 7, 10.
 Chiron, C., Jambaque, I., Nabbout, R., Lounes, R., Syrota, A., & Dulac, O. (1997). The right brain hemisphere is dominant in human infants. Brain: a journal of neurology, 120(6), 1057-1065.
 Mustard, J. F. (2010). Early brain development and human development. Encyclopedia on early childhood development, 1-5.
We believe most chiropractors get asked about leg length discrepancy, uneven pelvis, and shoulders.
There are two types of leg length discrepancy(LLD). (1) Firstly, true leg length or structural leg length discrepancy. It pretty much explains what it is. It is the measures of both of your lower limbs and one of your long bones is shorter than the other. For example, a traumatic event or fracture can result in different leg lengths.
Secondly, false leg length or functional leg length discrepancy. This is often caused by abnormal muscle tone in the lower limb or abnormal joint function. (1) Our pelvis has strong muscles, tendons and ligament to support the sacroiliac joints and hip joints. Pelvis dysfunction is likely to present when the muscles supporting the left and right of our joints are imbalanced or not activating properly. Some risk factors include weak core muscles, sitting crosslegged, kicking a ball with predominately one foot, always riding on one side of your scooter and shifting your center of gravity due to previous injury or pain (eg. knee pain). Be creative you can think of more than these!
Research has shown a strong link between LLD and degenerative joint disease! (1) Since most of LLD cases are very mild and sometimes difficult to notice, our bodyweight might have subtly shifted and become imbalanced. In other words, we might be putting more weight through one side of our body. Over time we observe the difference from the bottom of our shoes. What do you think might happen to your joints in the long run?
Being left-right balanced is ideal, but we would like to reassure you that no one on earth is ideal. We have dominant hand, left lungs have two lobes and the right lungs have 3 lobes. Yet, we would like to be as close to ideal as we can.
If you find your shoes or any pair of shoes at home are wearing out quicker than the other side, chat with our friendly staff members and chiropractors and see how we can help manage your concerns!
Migraine is common, in a survey of Australian chiropractors more than 50% of chiropractors manage migraine patients ‘often’. (1) Sometimes it may be only for a short time, but for some migraine sufferers it can be quite debilitating. In the US, 91% of migraine sufferers experience migraine-associated disability. (2-4) Do you or a loved one experience migraines? This is an important article that could make the world of difference to you.
“86% of people with chronic migraine in Australia report moderate to severe disability from migraines” (5)
Migraine is associated with a substantial burden, and people with migraine feel the impact in their day to day lives (5). Ineffective acute treatment and overuse of acute migraine medication has been shown to be a risk factor for migraines to develop into a chronic issue. Obesity, depression and stressful life events are also other risk factors (6).
In a recent research literature publication where a systemic review and meta-analysis was conducted, the preliminary results found that spinal adjustments may be an effective therapeutic technique to reduce migraine days and pain/intensity (7).
If you want to find out if chiropractic may help manage migraine for you or your loved ones, have a chat with one of our chiropractors to see how they can assist.
“When you are functioning at your best you are able to better perform in all aspects of your life!”
1.Adams J, Lauche R, Peng W, et al. A workforce sur- vey of Australian chiropractic: The profile and prac- tice features of a nationally representative sample of 2,005 chiropractors. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2017;17:14.
2. Hu XH, Markson LE, Lipton RB, Stewart WF, Berger ML. Burden of migraine in the United States: Disability and economic costs. Arch Intern Med. 1999;159:813-818.
3. Lipton RB, Bigal ME, Diamond M, et al. Migraine prevalence, disease burden, and the need for preven- tive therapy. Neurology. 2007;68:343-349.
4. Lipton RB, Stewart WF, Diamond S, Diamond ML, Reed M. Prevalence and burden of migraine in the United States: Data from the American Migraine Study II. Headache. 2001;41:646-657.
5. Benhaddi, H., McCabe, S. and Lau, D.T., 2019. 070 Burden of migraine is australia: a systematic literature review.
6. May, A. and Schulte, L.H., 2016. Chronic migraine: risk factors, mechanisms and treatment. Nature Reviews Neurology, 12(8), p.455.
7. Rist, P.M., Hernandez, A., Bernstein, C., Kowalski, M., Osypiuk, K., Vining, R., Long, C.R., Goertz, C., Song, R. and Wayne, P.M., 2019. The Impact of Spinal Manipulation on Migraine Pain and Disability: A Systematic Review and Meta‐Analysis. Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, 59(4), pp.532-542.
Symptoms like pain appear when something in your body is hurt or dysfunctioning. With many disease types a lot has to happen before you feel symptoms. Sure, you could break a bone or accidently cut yourself and you would feel instant pain but there are a lot of other diseases and issues that take a long time to manifest as pain or ill health. Some of these are heart issues, cancer and diabetes. These diseases take a longer time to develop and manifest, and if we can catch these things earlier there are much easier ways of dealing with them before they take a great toll on our health.
Early detection of reversible causes is desirable as they may be remediable and their treatment can prevent permanent dysfunction and disability (1).
Here are some simple tests to gain a window into your nervous system – the system that helps control your whole body. What we are showing here are a few easy tests to get a picture of how well a part of your nervous system is functioning. Specifically we are looking at proprioception. Proprioception is a deep sensation that arises from the muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints (1). This information essentially tells us where we are in space.
Central postural control (equilibrium) is dependent on input from three peripheral modalities: vision, vestibular apparatus (balance centres in our ears) and proprioception (joint sense and sense of position). Disturbance in any one of these modalities can be compensated for (completely or incompletely) by input from the other two systems. Therefore when we close our eyes and do the following tests we cannot rely on our vision to compensate. This allows us to more clearly test our positional sense and the way in which our nervous system transmits this information.
Romberg’s test is considered positive if there is significant imbalance with the eyes closed or the imbalance significantly worsens on closing the eyes (if imbalance was present with the eyes open). Normal individuals also tend to sway to some extent on closing their eyes. Low normal performance consists of the ability to stand heel-to toe, with eyes closed, for six seconds. Young adults should be able to perform this test for thirty seconds but performance is reported to decline with age (1).
In one of our recent blogs, we started talking about the rates of depression in pregnancy and post-natal depression including some of the implications of depression during and after pregnancy. Some of these risks included pre-term delivery, preeclampsia (high blood pressure), and birth difficulties. (1)
Following on from this, a recent study conducted in Victoria looked to see if it were possible to predict sleep problems for infants in the first year of life. They concluded that poorer prepartum and postpartum maternal mental and physical health; including poorer physical function, increased emotional problems, and decreased energy and vitality; were associated with reports of persistent severe infant sleep problems. (2)
Furthermore, maternal depression and anxiety has been associated with poorer right white frontal microstructure in 1-month old infants. This area of the brain is important for self-regulation needed for sleep. (2)
Cook et al. states: “Maternal prenatal stress alters melatonin levels, reducing generation of the circadian rhythm in the foetal adrenal gland, which is vital for the development of infant sleep, and potentially limiting foetal growth… Maternal prenatal depression raises free cortisol levels which in turn increases infant cortisol levels. Higher infant cortisol can result in poorer infant sleep quality and more frequent waking.” (2)
This does become a vicious cycle, as your child sleeps less, so do you. Lack of sleep can increase fatigue, depression and anxiety, which promotes the poorer sleep patterns in infants! So, for expecting mums, planning mums, and new mums; getting on top of your health will make a difference on the outcomes not just for you, but also for your infant and his or her sleep.
 Leung, B. M., & Kaplan, B. J. (2009). Perinatal depression: prevalence, risks, and the nutrition link—a review of the literature. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 109(9), 1566-1575.
 Cook, F., Conway, L., Gartland, D., Giallo, R., Keys, E. and Brown, S., 2019. Profiles and Predictors of Infant Sleep Problems Across the First Year. Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics.
Did you know 10% of mothers in Australia will experience depression from the time the get pregnant to 12 months after the birth of their child? Women who are depressed during pregnancy are at a higher risk for preterm delivery, preeclampsia, birth difficulties, and postpartum depression.
Data from the 2010 Australian National Infant Feeding Survey showed that 1 in 5 (20%) mothers of children aged 24 months or less had been diagnosed with depression. More than half of these mothers reported being diagnosed with depression during the perinatal period. This is the period of time from the beginning of pregnancy until the child is 12 months of age.
Many cases of maternal depression are underreported or underdiagnosed so the actual rate of depression could actually be much higher.
Risk factors for maternal depression include our epigenetics (genetics and their response to environmental factors), as well as a number of social, psychological, and biological factors. One biological factor needing extra consideration is inadequate nutrition.
Interventions aimed at the well-being parents with depression should consider targeting the nutritional environment .
Micronutrients, including certain B vitamins, folate or folinic acid, and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), play a role in the synthesis and absorption of our brain chemicals that affect our moods including serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline. Experimental studies suggest that supplementation with specific micronutrients may alleviate depressive symptoms and improve birth outcomes in patients with perinatal depression .
If you or someone you know is trying to fall pregnant or currently pregnant and is wanting to improve birthing outcomes as well as ensuring optimum health for yourself and your baby, the Doctors at Little Sprouts will be able to assist in managing your health.
 Leung, B. M., & Kaplan, B. J. (2009). Perinatal depression: prevalence, risks, and the nutrition link—a review of the literature. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 109(9), 1566-1575.
 Adhikari, P., & Cooper-Stanbury, M. (2012). Perinatal depression: Data from the 2010 Australian national infant feeding survey. AIHW.
 Barker, E. D., Kirkham, N., Ng, J., & Jensen, S. K. (2013). Prenatal maternal depression symptoms and nutrition, and child cognitive function. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 203(6), 417-421.
For years now, parents have been encouraged to minimised screen time for our children. In fact, there are many guidelines produced by governments, medical and paediatric associations, all of which advocate reducing screen time (here are the current guidelines for Australia https://austparents.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/screentime.pdf).
In 2017, The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne conducted a poll on screen usage in Australian homes. It found some potentially unsurprising results including:
More significantly, a 2019 study has found that increased screen time (above recommendations) is associated with lower brain white matter tracts that support language and literacy skills in pre-kindergarten children. These skills include imagery and executive function – the processes involving mental control and self-regulation. These children also have lower scores on language and literacy measures. This suggests that higher exposure to screens for younger children will dramatically impact on their performance when they are in school. (3)
If you would like some other tips about brain function for you or your child make sure to book an appointment with us.
Many publications and books have been published in popular media stating that there is a condition called adrenal fatigue. This condition is theorised to be caused by chronic exposure to stressful situations. Burnout syndrome or simply “burnout”, refers to a decrease in the cognitive functions, emotional exhaustion, and physical fatigue that is triggered by stressful situations and associated with excessive working.
Other symptoms of these conditions include feeling exhausted, irritable and unhappy. It is suggested in the lay press that the adrenal glands in these people function below the normal threshold, with the result that individuals feel tired and stressed. The internet is inundated with claims from people that they suffer from adrenal fatigue (1).
Adrenal fatigue, is a condition that some doctors dismiss because current research has not been able to exactly pinpoint and identify the chemicals that are imbalanced in this disorder.
These symptoms can be caused by a lot of other health conditions and it is very important that these things are screened for and eliminated. Some of these are sleep obstructive apnea syndrome, mental illnesses, hormonal deficiencies; liver and kidney dysfunctions, heart conditions, autoimmune diseases, among others (2). We definitely need to rule these things out. It is also interesting to note that in studies; fatigue is often associated with Chronic Low Back Pain (2).
James Wilson a PhD Doctor has a very interesting view. He states that the brain is constantly calculating how much stress hormone (cortisol) is releases so that our bodies perform appropriately. This calculation happens every 3-6 seconds. AMAZING! The system works with wonderful efficiency as long as the stresses are not too lasting, numerous or severe. But in current modern industrial society, this is often not the case. Stresses are often prolonged, abundant, multiple and intense. In addition, the nutrients used in greatly increased quantities during such high stress states are not replenished by the normal modern diet. Even in ‘healthy’ foods, nutrient quality has been diminished by the use of chemical fertilizers, which deplete the ground of the minerals and trace minerals necessary for plants to make and store the vitamin and phytonutrient rich food which existed previously (3). Thus, people today experiencing constant and multiple stressors have fewer nutrients to replenish challenged adrenals. He believes the number of people that have this condition is as high as 67% of the population!
Dr Wilson states that as incapacitating and severe as adrenal fatigue can be and as bad as it can make people feel, its saving grace is that the right kind of therapy is nearly always successful. Fortunately, most aspects of this therapy are already used by many conscientious practitioners. At Little Sprouts we find it very helpful to manage all of the underlying dysfunctions present, and this is how we help you manage adrenal fatigue symptoms. These include lifestyle modification, stress management techniques, adjustments to diet, and nutritional supplementation and of course helping you manage your pain.
The traditional concept of chiropractic
The top three most common reasons that people visit a chiropractor are lower back pain, neck pain, and extremity problems.(1) Pain is such an unpleasant feeling that affects our daily living horrendously. In fact, pain is vital for us to survive. Imagine if you got a cut and you didn’t feel the pain. Pain is here to let us know there is a problem somewhere and to do something about it. We know chiropractic can help manage all sorts of pain.
Is there any further functions chiropractic can do to help improve your health and performance?
Sports are using chiropractic
Spinal manipulative therapy is rising in sports care.(2) In the United States, Chiropractic has been used in the Olympic games since 1980. The Brazillian Olympic Committee has been using chiropractic care since 2000.(3) Chiropractic has been helping athletes for better performance, injury prevention, and rehabilitation. Research demonstrates chiropractic interventions help lower limb injury prevention with a significant reduction in primary lower limb muscle strains in Australian football.(2)
Many people are becoming more conscious of their own health, eating more wisely and staying physically fit. Look at these these Judo athletes who train very hard and are striving to beat their previous records. Research showed cervical (neck) spine adjustment has a positive effect to grip strength.(3) Grip strength of professional Judo athletes was recorded before and after receiving a cervical spine adjustment. The result was pretty remarkable, grip strength was increased up to 16.8% after adjustments!(3)
People sometimes get frustrated about hitting the plateau of their performance, chiropractic might be able to help break through your plateau and boost you up like you never have been. Have a chat with our chiropractors and see how we can help to get you to your next level!
1. Beliveau PJ, Wong JJ, Sutton DA, Simon NB, Bussières AE, Mior SA, et al. The chiropractic profession: a scoping review of utilization rates, reasons for seeking care, patient profiles, and care provided. Chiropractic & manual therapies. 2017;25(1):35.
2. Hoskins W, Pollard H. The effect of a sports chiropractic manual therapy intervention on the prevention of back pain, hamstring and lower limb injuries in semi-elite Australian Rules footballers: a randomized controlled trial. BMC musculoskeletal disorders. 2010;11(1):64.
3. Botelho MB, Andrade BB. Effect of cervical spine manipulative therapy on judo athletes' grip strength. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics. 2012;35(1):38-44.
Is cracking your knuckles bad for you? What did your parents/grandparents tell you when you did “crack” your knuckles? “Stop or you will have arthritis when you get older!!”
Well the arthritis that they were referring to, as there are a few types, is most likely Osteoarthritis, the most common joint disorder in the world (1). Is there anything that chiropractic can do that may help manage it? If you or a loved one have osteoarthritis, or are wondering whether it may be a possible issue that you may have, this is an important article that could make the world of a difference to you.
“In the US Osteoarthritis is second to only ischaemic heart disease as a cause of work disability in men over 50 years of age,”(1)
The primary symptoms of osteoarthritis include joint pain and stiffness. It affects the joint in many ways which include damage and loss of cartilage, abnormal remodelling of subarticular bone, osteophytes (bone growth at the joint margins), lax ligaments, weakening of muscles related to the joint and inflammation. (2) It is now widely viewed as an age-related reaction pattern of a joint as a response to insult or injury to the joint, also a product of attempted repairing of the joint by the body. (1) Most joint injuries may be at risk of developing osteoarthritis. So “cracking” your knuckles is bad if it causes injury or insult to the joint.
In a recent research literature, where 10 rabbits had induced osteoarthritis in the knee, were split into groups with one group receiving chiropractic adjustments with a chiropractic adjusting instrument. Their joints were then examined after about 8 weeks. It was found that the rabbits who received chiropractic adjustments had improved subchondral bone integrity and cartilage degradation was inhibited. These findings support that chiropractic adjustments may ameliorate osteoarthritis through beneficial effects on the three most affected tissues in osteoarthritis. (3)
If you want to find out if chiropractic can help manage osteoarthritis for you or your loved ones, chat with one of our chiropractors to see how they can assist.
“With so many different activities putting so much stress on our joints, causing it to wear and tear, it’s important to make sure that our joints are functioning at their optimal to better support us with the activities that we love doing!!”
(1) Arden, N. and Nevitt, M.C., 2006. Osteoarthritis: epidemiology. Best practice & research Clinical rheumatology, 20(1), pp.3-25.
(2) Hutton, C.W., 1989. Osteoarthritis: the cause not result of joint failure?. Annals of the rheumatic diseases, 48(11), p.958.
(3) Conesa-Buendía, F.M., Fujikawa, R., Mediero, A., Gratal, P., Mulero, F. and Ortega-De Mues, A., 2018. Changes in subchondral bone status, cartilage and synovial membrane in response to chiropractic manipulation in an osteoarthritis model. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage, 26, p.S319.