Posts Tagged With "Chiropractic Medicine"
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a common disorder suffered by millions of Americans. During sleep the brain is deprived of oxygen, making it literally impossible for the person to get into deep REM sleep. This can create severe fatigue, irritability, heart problems, and overall poor daily function. The common treatment for sleep apnea is the CPAP, a breathing device that is worn at night, forcing air down the throat so the person is not deprived of oxygen and can sleep.
Many of the patients we treat for sleep apnea have little or no ability to breath through their nose, so when wearing the CPAP, most feel as if they are suffocating, leading to poor compliance. Being able to breath through the nose is NOT overrated- think back on when you've had a horrible cold and had nasal congestion- it's fatiguing, irritating, and hard to focus.
Timothy, a 14-year-old boy, was referred to our office for a sleep apnea diagnosis and an asymmetrical facial growth that was affecting his speech and bite. Not wanting to use the CPAP, and wanting to avoid facial surgery, Timothy's mother brought him to us first.
Timothy had experienced breathing difficulty through his nose for most of his life. At birth he suffered oxygen deprivation, which caused some brain damage. At the age of 14 he has a 3rd grade reading level and is home schooled, due to auditory difficulties. Besides the sleep apnea diagnosis, poor nasal breathing (history of sinus surgery that did help him breathe some), his doctor had diagnosed that his maxilla (cheekbones) were not growing at the same rate as his mandible (jaw bone), and they wanted to do surgery to correct his this. He had just finished 5 years of vision therapy and sensory integration training- these are meant to help him use his senses together. For many "low functioning" children integrating all their senses together is very hard, they must focus on one thing at a time.
He complains of severe fatigue in the morning, brain fog, severe difficulty focusing on homework, low attention span, (all of which are symptoms of sleep apnea and sensory integration disorders), and Restless Leg Syndrome, (of which he had recently increased his medication due to increasing tolerance).
Timothy on first impression was a tall lanky, teenager with braces. He was very respectful and talkative, but did not make direct eye contact, was visibly fatigued, fidgety during intake and exam, and became easily irritated with his mother if she talked too much. He also exhibited tongue thrust (his tongue didn't fit in his mouth), decreased nasal breathing, and poor standing posture.
He cooperated tremendously however, and we were able to give him his first NCR treatment. On returning the second day, Timothy seemed calmer, even falling asleep on the table. His mother noted his "snoring" seemed less, and he was better able focus on his homework. Timothy told me he could breathe through his nose and had more energy on waking. After the second day of treatment, his mother stated he had no Restless Leg Syndrome for the last two nights without medication.
After the full 4-day session, Timothy exhibited increased focus, energy, and seemed to be more aware of me, and his surroundings. His maxilla and mandible had changed significantly, and he noted it felt like his tongue fit in his mouth, and his signs of sleep apnea were greatly decreased. His Restless Leg Syndrome had all but disappeared (along with the need for medication) and he was more stable and balanced in his standing posture.
The greatest change however, came from his mother. She stated that for the FIRST time in recent memory, even after 5 years of vision therapy, he was looking her in the eye when he talked to her. Not only that, he was interacting with improved confidence in social situations. This was a defining moment for Timothy and his family. Having a child with sensory deprivation suddenly become aware of his surroundings, and look into your eyes is something you will never forget.
Timothy's case is a perfect example of STRUCTURE AFFECTING FUNCTION, his brain needed more room, and with improved structural alignment, his overall sensory integration naturally improved. With the addition of dietary modifications and nutrient therapy, NCR has greatly changed the future for Timothy. As a doctor who knows the power of NCR, cases like Timothy's never stop amazing me. I have much to learn from all my patients, especially the children, it's been a great pleasure working with Timothy and his family!
*this case review was shared with permission of Timothy's parents, and names have been changed to protect the patient.