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Being Connected

A "Clean Restore" for Your Body?

When you do a clean restore or recovery on your computer, you reestablish its initial factory condition. You wipe the slate clean of all the accumulated junk - viruses, spyware, and unnecessary programs you've amassed. This results in a clean, lean machine that runs significantly faster and works much better.

Extending the connectivity metaphor, is it possible to do a "clean restore" on your body? In one sense, no you cannot and in many ways that's a good thing. You wouldn't want to erase all the things you've experienced and learned in your lifetime that help make you who you are. These memories are also retained by the cells of your body, and your environmental experiences can significantly impact your DNA.

In another sense, though, it is possible to do a "clean restore", on a cell-by-cell basis. As a matter of fact, your body's cells are constantly renewing themselves and in effect doing their own versions of a clean restore. If you provide the appropriate inputs in the form of nutritious and healthy food, plenty of exercise, and get enough sleep, your new cells will be smarter, faster, and even better than the ones they are replacing.

We live in a time when being connected is very important for most people.  Have you ever experienced anxiety when you are out and about and realize you've left your cell phone at home? For teenagers, having a cell phone can be considered a status symbol, but it's also a connection to their social network.  Cell phones can be lifelines for many people.

And how about the internet?  How many of us begin to experience withdrawal symptoms if we're separated from our Internet connection for even a short while?  Have you experienced the angst of suddenly being without access to the web?  Do you tend to check your email or Facebook constantly throughout each day?

Being electronically connected to the the external world may help us to feel secure, but it's even more important to be well connected in the physical world - both physically and socially. In the electronic world we are connected to networks, primarily by our internet connection. In the world of our own physiology, networks are also the crucial element.  In this case we are referring to the neurological networks which comprise our nerve system.1

This nerve system consists of the brain, cranial nerves, spinal cord, spinal nerves, and miles of peripheral nerves which connect the spinal cord and spinal nerves to every other cell in the body. In the body, the rules are simple. If there is a problem with a cell's connection to the nerve system, the result is that the cell's activities become disorganized. If the disconnection or interference continues, the cell eventually becomes diseased and may even die.

In a similar scenario a cell may be connected, but because of problems in the nerve system itself, the cell is receiving nerve signals that are inappropriate or inaccurate. The end result is the same - the cell's activities become disorganized until it becomes diseased and eventually dies. If enough cells are affected in this way, the person develops symptoms and becomes sick.

"Problems" within the nerve system are often the result of what we refer to as spinal subluxations.  This simply means that there is reduced mobility between one or more pairs of spinal vertebras, with associated spasm or spinal muscle tightness, spinal nerve irritation, and spinal joint inflammation. When this happens, the free flow of information between the nerve system and the rest of the body becomes compromised - causing both ends of the network to receive information that is ineffective and inappropriate.  This results in what can be thought of as a "system crash" in the form of symptoms and disease.

Chiropractic health care is especially designed to restore effective connectivity and communication between your nerve system and your other body systems.2 Your Millar chiropractor specializes in identifying the spinal subluxations at the root of the problem, restoring proper balance to your spine and nerve system by applying safe, gentle and affective chiropractic care.  As optimal functioning begins to be restored, improved levels of health and well-being naturally result.

Social Connections - Do You Need to "Unplug"?

Are you spending more time communicating with people electronically while your in-person social interactions are diminishing?  Human beings are social creatures who evolved over countless millennia interacting with their local "tribe" and other social groupings.  Our social interactions remain an important part of our well-being.  Research suggests that having at least two or three close friendships significantly improve a person's health, happiness and even longevity.

Taking the time and energy to develop and maintain your close friendships will pay many dividends throughout your lifetime.  If you are raising teenagers, encourage them to avoid becoming dependent on electronic social networking, and help them to understand that electronic relationships and accumulating a lot of Facebook "friends" are not good substitutes for real relationships.

Many people who have decided to "unplug" from their electronic lives for a month or longer - by limiting online activities, texting, television, video games, or any other activity that has become too much of a crutch or distraction - are amazed at how much more productive and satisfying their lives become.  They report a surprising feeling of relief and freedom, after adjusting to being unplugged from the constant distraction of their smart phones and other devices, along with improvements in their personal relationships and an increased sense of inner peace.

1Coward LA: The hippocampal system as the cortical resource manager: a model connecting psychology, anatomy and physiology. Adv Exp Med Biol 657:315-364, 2010

2Taylor HH, Murphy B: Altered central integration of dual somatosensory input after cervical spine manipulation. J Manipulative Physiol Ther 33(3):178-188, 2010

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