What is Scoliosis and How is it treated?

August 20, 2022

What is scoliosis & what are the available options? by Dr. Aaron Vela Have you been told by a healthcare professional that you or your child has scoliosis? What is scoliosis? Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine that is seen in a front to back, or back to front, view of the spine. The spine normally has 3 curves that can be seen when looking at the spine from the side. These normal curves are in your neck, your mid back, and your lower back. These normal curves function as shock absorbers for the body. Scoliosis is a lateral curve in the spine or more easily put, a left or right curve in the spine that may lead to premature degeneration, pain, postural abnormalities, and restricted mobility. There are generally 5 different types of scoliosis. Congenital – meaning the person was born with it. Neuromuscular – which is caused by neuromuscular (nerve and muscle) conditions and their impact on the body, such as cerebral palsy. Degenerative – which occurs when the joints between vertebrae in the back of the spine have deteriorated. Functional – which is more or less a temporary type of scoliosis that can be...

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The Difference Between Good Skaters & Great Skaters – Portland, Maine

June 15, 2022

Dr. Aaron Vela - Skateboarding Chiropractor - Portland, Maine

The Difference Between Good Skaters & Great Skaters                                       By Dr. Aaron Vela, Skateboarding Chiropractor – Portland, ME Every skateboarder strives to learn new tricks. To throw down their new trick on a new set of stairs, over a new hip, or in a combo like a kickflip, back lip, or tre-flip 50-50. The goal is to challenge yourself to better yourself, and have fun while doing it. But why do some skaters excel at skateboarding and why do others tend to stagnate in skill and development? Potential factors include experience, confidence, strategies in learning new tricks, and perfecting them. Genetics, drive, and physical aptitude may also play a role. While these are indeed factors, they are not necessarily the strongest indicators as to who will be a highly skilled skater and who will not be. What is a strong indicator? The answer is optimal neuromuscular and biomechanical control – the ability of your brain to control your muscles, joints, fingers, and toes in a highly efficient and accurate way. Enter the long, technical medical jargon: proprioception. In simplest terms, proprioception...

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Tennis Elbow Pain. Best Home Exercises!

January 2, 2022

How to Reduce Pain from Tennis Elbow – At Home! Generally speaking, Tennis Elbow (aka Lateral Epicondylitis) is an overuse injury that can cause small tears in the muscle tendons that attach to the outside of the elbow, resulting in pain, dysfunction, and the annoying inability to perform once easy daily tasks. A new systematic review and meta-analysis in the Journal of Clinical Medicine by Yoon et al. published in September 2021 determined that there are key exercises that can reduce your elbow pain significantly and conservatively and those are “Eccentric Exercises” of the forearm.¹ Eccentric muscle contraction occurs when you load the muscle while lengthening it, while concentric muscle contraction occurs when you load the muscle while shortening it. Here is a video showing how to perform eccentric exercises for the forearm to help reduce your elbow pain over time. You can use a resistance band, a dumb-bell, a rubber resistance bar, or even a filled water bottle. Frequency can range between 10-15 repetitions per set, 2 times per day, 3 days per week, using 1-5 pounds to start. You can decrease or increase these parameters depending on your ability. Here in the office, incorporating adjustments, acupuncture, physiotherapy...

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Better Stretching with PNF! Hamstring Miracles Happen!

December 20, 2021

PNF stretching - Hamstrings. With Aaron Vela. (207)774-6251

PNF Stretching: A Better Way to Stretch What is PNF? PNF stands for Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation and it’s an advanced form of stretching that is very effective for increasing your range of motion. How does it work? The stretching essentially involves 3 basic steps that can be applied to any muscle that needs stretching, especially before and after a physically demanding activity. The stretching utilizes reflexes in the muscles, as well as excitatory and inhibitory signals in the muscle being stretched, and the muscle opposing the stretch. You can think of it as stretching the involved muscle, then contracting the muscle without moving it, then stretching the target muscle again,  increasing your range of motion. The technique has long been used by athletes across the world for improving flexibility quickly, safely, and very effectively. How do I do it? It’s easy. This stretching technique can be applied to any muscle! Just apply these steps. Step 1: Stretch the muscle as you normally would for about 6-10 seconds. Step 2: Relax the stretch, but now concentrically contract the muscle for about 6 seconds (flex the muscle without bending the joint). Step 3: Relax the contraction, but now re-stretch the muscle...

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Kinesiotape for performance, pain relief, and prevention. Athletes, Moms, Musicians.

September 24, 2021

DID YOU KNOW THAT JCA OFFERS KINESIOLOGY TAPING? What Is Kinesiology Taping & How Can It Help Me? You may have seen this before. Athletes running around town or competing in sports on television while wearing some sort of seemingly strategically placed black, or fluorescent tape on their skin. What is it? Kinesiology Taping, AKA elastic therapeutic tape, Kinesiotape, K-tape, KT, neuro-proprioceptive tape, or a number of other brand named tapes currently on the market are all similar. At this time, there are many brand names that all represent products that do the same thing. What does kinesiotape do? Kinesiotape has a variety of uses, but is largely used to lessen pain in sore and repetitively used areas of the body. It can also be used to increase the movement of fluids in the tissues (such as with swelling and bruises), improve static posture (how your body is positioned while still), lessen the effects of nerve entrapment, and improve dynamic posture (how your body moves around in your environment). Examples of problems that respond well to kinesiotape are: Shin Splints Shoulder strain and pain Knee pain and instability low back pain neck pain elbow pain and strain (tennis elbow/golfers...

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Feet pain, back pain, and at home solutions. Videos!

August 31, 2021

Foot pain and back pain - A match made in hell.

Feet Pain and Back Pain.  A match made in hell. As I’ve aged, my feet have proved to be much less forgiving than they were when I was 16. As a bumbling teenage skater, I could handle the force of gravity as I plunged my body and my board down a set of 12 stairs, bailing half way and landing on my feet and rolling onto my shoulder, only to get back up and try it again and again. Now I’m lucky if I don’t twist my ankle or bruise my heel if I step off the curb the wrong way. I’ve discovered the importance of maintaining the health of your feet. In doing so, I have also discovered a way to keep chronic low back pain at bay. After all, our feet are only 4 joints away from our lower back. Shock from walking, running, jumping, and voluntarily throwing yourself down a 10 foot high embankment starts at the feet and reverberates to the ankles, knees, hips, and to then to the sacroiliac joints and spine. This reverberation transmits at a much higher amplitude when your feet are flat, injured, or subluxated. And, this also leaves you vulnerable...

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