Arterial Dissection / Stroke, Sun Safety & Bug Spray

Arterial dissection of the cervical (neck) arteries is a very rare condition that has recently been in the news.  Some media outlets report that this condition is caused by chiropractic adjustments.  This is very misleading and false.  This condition occurs in 3 people per 100,000 in the general population, but chiropractic patients it is 1 in 8 million people per year.  Symptoms of this condition can be neck pain and headache.  Whether a person seeks care from a medical doctor or doctor of chiropractic, stroke can follow at an equal rate regardless of the type of provider. 

In general a chiropractic patient is 4-5 times less likely to suffer from this condition due to them being more proactive with their health.  Regular adjustments reduce neck tension and proper alignment keeps nerve function optimal.  Studies have proven there is no greater association of stroke for persons under chiropractic care compared with those under medical care.  A team of neurosurgeons at the University of Pennsylvania published research concluding. “There is no convincing evidence to support a link between chiropractic manipulation and cervical artery dissection (CAD).

Dr. Brian practices Gonstead chiropractic which does not put the neck into flexion and rotation of the cervical spine to achieve proper alignment.  This increases safety of the adjustment and removes any risk factors of cervical spinal adjustments. In general chiropractic care is safe for all people. 

A chiropractor’s malpractice insurance premiums reflect this. Chiropractic malpractice insurance can cost $100 up to $2500 a year dependent on the years practiced..  Medical malpractice insurance is $20.000 up to $100,000 depending on the procedures the medical doctor performs.   If chiropractor’s were injuring their patients insurance companies would not insure them at such a low rate.

What’s more cancerous: the sun or your sunscreen?

Did You Know… your sunscreen may be more likely to cause cancer than the sun? Common sunscreen ingredients are suspected or known carcinogens and/or hormone disrupters, including diethanolamine, triethanolamine (DEA, TEA),padimate-o, octyl dimethyl PABA, benzophenone,oxybenzone, homosalate, octyl-methoxycinnamate (octinoxate), salicylates, and parabens. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, over 600,000 new cases of skin cancer are detected every year, and that number is on the rise.

Why is skin cancer suddenly so prominent?

Studies found that nations where chemical sunscreens are heavily promoted have actually seen a higher rise in melanoma. Sun exposure in adequate amounts actually prevents cancer through vitamin D production and immune system stimulation.  We must avoid sunburn but get the essential sunshine our body needs by using sunscreens that are good for our skin. This is why Doctor Brian recommends using a sunscreen that has only organic, natural  ingredients.  A good website for information on sun protection and a wealth of other healthy information is: (Environmental Working 

Two safe ingredients in sunscreen are zinc oxide and Titanium dioxide.  There are several brands on the market to chose.  Remember if there are too many ingredients it’s probably not your best choice.   You can even make your own sunscreen at home.  Mix 1/2 cup coconut oil with 2 tablespoons of zinc oxide ointment.  This will help you and your family enjoy time in the sun and not have to worry about burning or absorbing nasty chemicals from your sunscreen.

What’s Worse Than The Bugs?  

Let’s face it, no one likes mosquitoes.  Their bites itch and that sound they make is just so annoying.  But what’s worse, suffering through a few bug bites or having to deal with headaches, confusion, drowsiness, muscle pain, and nausea?  The use of DEET, the most common active ingredient in most insect repellents, has always been controversial, but new studies are showing that DEET isn’t all that safe.  Because the side effects of DEET can take months or even years to manifest, few people realize what could be the cause of common ailments.

Why have previous studies not shown the harmful effects of DEET? Previous studies on the effects of DEET have only been short term.  They studied the effects for only a few days after DEET was administered.  New studies have been testing the effect of DEET on lab rats, and the studies have lasted for months.  Dr. Mohamed Abou-Donia, who has studied the effects of pesticides on the brain, says that frequent application of DEET can causes neurons to die in certain parts of the brain.  The areas of the brain most affected by this toxin are the regions that control muscle movement, learning, memory, and concentration.  Also, in both animal and human cells, DEET has been seen to damage the DNA.   

What are the effects of DEET?  The effects of DEET don’t usually appear right away.  Sometimes they can take months or years to appear.  However, DEET toxicity can have some very serious side effects.  Besides headaches, fatigue, and nausea, DEET toxicity can  result in tremors, muscle spasms, seizures, and coma.  DEET also has the ability to cause genetic damage and mutations, leading to cancer and other problems later in life.  Several cases of toxic encephalopathy, any disease of the brain that alters the brain’s function or structure, have also been reported in children after using DEET.  

How can DEET enter my body?  DEET can enter your body the same way any other toxin can; absorption through the skin, inhalation, or ingestion.  The most common way is absorption, since most people apply the toxin directly to their skin.  However, once the skin absorbs it, DEET can also be absorbed by some of the main organs, causing internal damage.

Using DEET has also led to environmental concerns.  The chemical has shown to have a destructive effect on animal wildlife and water sources.  It is now estimated that over seventy-five percent of the world’s water sources are contaminated with DEET.  Everyday, animals, plants, and humans drink this water, consuming more and more of this chemical.  Birds and fish are even more susceptible to DEET than mammals are.  Help yourself and the environment by choosing bug sprays other than those that contain DEET.  You many not feel the effects yet, but why put yourself or loved ones at risk.  DEET is a toxin, and why would you want to be even slightly poisoned?

Safer Alternatives Include:  Citronella Oil, Lemon Eucalyptus Oil, Cinnamon Oil, Castor Oil, Rosemary Oil, Lemongrass Oil, Cedar Oil, Peppermint Oil, Clove Oil, and Geranium Oil, Possibly Oils from Verbena, Pennyroyal, Lavender, Pine, Cajeput, Basil, Thyme, Allspice, Soybean, and Garlic Another plant-derived substance, pyrethrum, is an insecticide. Pyrethrum comes from the flowers of the daisy Chrysanthemum cinerariifolium.

Gonstead Difference