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Blog Archive

Flexion in Lying Jan 6th, 2021

The Mckenzie method is famous for it's extension based treatment plans.  However, flexion, including the flexion in lying exercise, is a critical tool when it comes to addressing low back problems for patients. Flexion is an important load to understand, as people typically flex their spine several times throughtout the...

Telehealth: The Advantages of Telemedicine Dec 23rd, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered dramatic changes throughout everyday life — and in the medical community as well. Not only are providers across the country postponing elective procedures, but many are also encouraging people to avoid in-office appointments to reduce their risk of exposure to this highly contagious coronavirus.But what...

Shoulder traction Dec 15th, 2020

This video goes over shoulder traction - a self mobilization for shoulder pain resulting from internal joint injuries. It is safe for most people and easily applied throughout the day with no equipment needed. It may not lead to full resolution, but can be helpful in mitigating a painful shoulder...

Mckenzie Shoulder Extension Dec 13th, 2020

The Mckenzie method is well known for its application for injuries of the neck and low back.  But, did you know, that it can be applied to the joints of your extremities as well?  In this video, we show you how to perform one of the most common shoulder loading...

Side Glides in Standing Dec 10th, 2020

This exercise is prescribed almost exclusively when an injury is unilateral, which means WE ONLY PERFORM THEM GOING IN ONE DIRECTION. End range loading protocols work by placing directionally specific force on tissues to help them heal, so performing them bilaterally is not only unnecessary, but may actually slow recovery.  Side...

Thoracic Spine Extension Dec 7th, 2020

This video is yet another example of how we utilize extension end range movements in the Mckenze Method to help you find rapid relief from back pain. It is best performed in a chair with a straight back that ends around your mid back, just below the most painful part...

Sustained Cervical Extension Nov 27th, 2020

This exercise is a common progression for patients who have found some relief from our usual dose of chiropractic adjustments and mckenzie method treatment, but their neck pain isn't going away completely.  By sustaining a position for longer a period of time, we actually increase the amount of force being...

Shoulder internal rotation Nov 24th, 2020

Internal Rotation is one of the most commonly relieving movements for people with shoulder pain that gives them difficulty reaching overhead or behind their back to get dressed.  As a chiropractor, it is also important to evaluate the spine any time their is pain coming into the shoulder, particularly if...

Cervical Spine Retraction & Extension Nov 24th, 2020

One of the most common complaints we see as chiropractors is neck pain. As the only therapist in the West Loop neighborhood of Chicago certified in the Mckenzie method of mechanical diagnosis and therapy, we often combine chiropractic adjustments with home exercise programs. The beauty of these Mckenzie exercises is...

Slouch/Overcorrect Exercise Nov 19th, 2020

As the only Mckenzie certified chiropractor in the West Loop of Chicago, we have a vast array of exercises from which we pluck an individualized prescription for each patient. The slouch/overcorrect - or SOC - exercise, is often overlooked in that catalog of Mckenzie method movements.  However, it has versatile...

Introducing Dr. Todd Peterson Nov 18th, 2020

Welcome to our blog! This video introduces Dr. Todd Peterson, the owner and clinical director of Axial Spine & Wellness. Watch this video to learn more about how Dr. Todd came to be a chiropractor, chose to practice in the West Loop of Chicago, and why he combines the Mckenzie...

What to do when your exercises are painful Nov 8th, 2020

As a chiropractor, most people expect my treatment to involve some sort of spinal adjustments. But what may people don't realize, is almost everyone who comes into my office also receives an exercise prescription from my training in the Mckenzie method to go home with.  This helps people recover more...

Extension in standing Nov 7th, 2020

As the only Certified provider of the McKenzie method of mechanical diagnosis and therapy in the West loop neighborhood of Chicago, we are in a unique position to pair simple at home exercise programs with chiropractic adjustments to help you recover from your low back and neck pain quickly. Extension...

Fix your posture, Fix your back pain Oct 31st, 2020

As the only chiropractor in the West Loop neighborhood of Chicago, we assess every patient's posture when they come in the door with back or neck pain. If their pain is directly related to the mechanical forces that come with posture, correcting their seated posture is one of the most...

Extension in lying Oct 26th, 2020

Extension in lying, or the prone pressup, is one of the most commonly prescribved end range loading protocols for back pain. Check out the video to refresh on the finer points of the exercise.  Remember, the KEY BENEFIT OF THIS EXERCISE IS ACHIEVED BY REACHING END RANGE, or going as...

Cervical Spine Retraction Oct 26th, 2020

Cervical spine retraction is often one of the first avenues of treatment for our patients with neck pain.  It is an end range loading exercise made famous by the Mckenzie method and is safe to perform in almost all patients. It is a simple exercise, but it has subtle nuance...

What really causes back pain? Sep 4th, 2020

Back pain is an enigma.  It's one of the leading causes of disability in the world. On top of that, musculoskeletal injuries in general are becoming one of the biggest costs in healthcare.   One of the main reasons back pain is so devasting and costly is disagreement on what...

5 reasons to make a chiropractor your first stop for back and body pains Jul 31st, 2020

1. We're primary care doctors.   This means you don't need a referral from any other doctor in order to see a chiropractor. As a chiropractors, we are trained to assess and diagnose any problem that comes into our office, therefore you don't need to see an MD before we...

McKenzie: More than just disc treatment Jun 23rd, 2020

I remember talking to a colleague before I attended my first continuing education class for the Mckenzie method (AKA Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy or "MDT") and describing it as a "class to learn how to treat herniated discs."  I thought that it was an accurate statement at the time, and...

Making sure your adjustment is safe and comfortable May 29th, 2020

Let's be clear: Chiropractic adjutsments are very safe and can be effective for treating several different causes of spine and joint pains. But, for those who may be unsure if a chiropractic adjustment is right for them, it may give some reassurance to know there is a specific approach to...

Mechanical Pain Syndromes May 7th, 2020

One of the most frustrating things about chiropractors, and all orthopedic doctors really, is that you can go to multiple doctors with the same problem and receive several different diagnoses.  Musculoskeletal diagnosis is incredibly difficult. Even with a clear cut picture from an MRI, we have no way of knowing...

FAQ's on Chiropractic adjustments Apr 30th, 2020

The first thing that comes to mind when I say chiropractor? For most people, it is an image of spinal manipulation.  It goes by many names: An adjustment, a realignment, manipulation, cracking, popping, but what is it, really? If you've ever wondered that yourself or are considering visiting a chiropractor...

Stomach sleeping Apr 15th, 2020

Stomach sleeping, like any posture, has its pros and cons. It is often thought of as a “bad” position for your neck.  Every posture, even when we’re lying down, results in gravity applying force to our body. Stomach sleeping mandates near maximal rotation of the neck, which applies even more force...

Battle Back pain while working at home Apr 2nd, 2020

We say it all the time, there's no such thing as good posture or bad posture.  Any position, if maintained for too long, will eventually start to irritate the tissues that are subject to the most force in said position.  This leads to many of our catchphrases like "your best...

COVID-19 update Mar 19th, 2020

Hello everyone, as you may have seen in our instagram post yesterday, we have suspended all in office visits in the interest of social distancing and flattening the curve during this corona virus pandemic. We urge you all to do everything you can to mitigate the spread of this virus...

Phases of Healing for Joint Pain Feb 20th, 2020

We don't believe in cemented treatment plans.  Our treatment frequency and duration is guided by the process by the healing process. In this post we explain those stages of healing and what it will mean for your treatment.  First Phase: "Mechanical Diagnosis"  (2x per week) A clear diagnosis is paramount...

Handheld Massagers Sep 24th, 2019

If you are a runner or a member of a workout class somewhere, you've probably seen their adds on instagram.  The TheraGun, The Hypervolt, the TimTam, or the Kraft percussion devices. Percussion Devices feel great, and they are safe with few side effects, but are they really doing what they...

The myths around cervical curvature Sep 16th, 2019

We’ve talked about it in blog posts before: Chiropractors love to nit pick the curves of the spine.  In particular, your neck typically has a lordotic curve, which is just a fancy way of saying the opening of the “C” curve should point backwards.  For decades, this curve had been...

To Adjust or not to adjust? Sep 11th, 2019

It's always fun to see people respond when I tell them I'm a chiropractor.  Some state they "Love" or "Believe in" their chiropractic.  Others politely get very quiet, and others still go on to tell a tale of a bad experience or just state they think it's all quackery. But,...

Anatomy is overrated. Aug 18th, 2019

Unfortunately, we are rarely the first doctor people see for their aches and pains. That means most patients that walk in the door have already consulted a professional about their problem. That means they’ve already heard at least one opinion on why they’re having the problem. Here are some of...

Don’t fall for the traditional chiropractic treatment plan. Aug 15th, 2019

The treatment plan.   It’s a crucial part to recovery from any injury in a managed care setting. Some insurance plans will not provide any reimbursement without having one written and on file.  So, why are we devoting an entire blog post to the potential perils of the “traditional chiropractic...

What is the Mckenzie Method? Jul 27th, 2019

If you've followed our social media or blog, you've probably saw us write about the "McKenzie Method," "Mechanical Diagnosis and therapy," or "MDT." You've probably thought to yourself "What the heck is that?" If you want to know what the McKenzie institute says, you can go here. In our own...

Insurance Billing Jul 18th, 2019

Insurance is confusing.  Reading an invoice from a chiropractor shouldn’t be.  We’re here to help with that problem today so that when you receive a bill from our West Loop office, you can go over it and understand what it means. First, it’s important to understand how claims are sent...

What to expect on your first visit Jul 18th, 2019

If you’re reading this, you’re probably injured.  I’m sorry, that sucks.  What sucks more is that our healthcare and insurance systems make getting better from injury way too complicated.  We’re here to help, and we’re not your average chiropractor. Or physical therapist. Chiropractors and physical therapists sell you a plan...

Health Insurance definitions Jul 17th, 2019

PPO - Preferred Provider Organization - An insurance plan that has a network of doctors that allows patients to freely choose which doctors they want to see. This allows greater freedom when making appointments, particularly with specialist doctors. You can even see doctors out of this network, but often times...

Health insurance for chiropractic Jul 17th, 2019

The first question patients may ask when they call into our office is usually “Do you accept my insurance?”  With the affordable care act, everyone is required to have health insurance, so most people want to take advantage of a service for which they are already paying. In our office,...

Red Flags of a questionable chiropractor May 15th, 2019

So, you're thinking of visiting a chiropractor.  I would guess you want to find a really good chiropractor.  Maybe even the best chiropractor.  I'm sure you've heard a range of stories about chiropractors and whether or not they are helpful. One friend may say "My chiropractor saved my life" while...

Why Do we use the McKenzie method?` Apr 25th, 2019

1. It’s Patient centered Patient centered care has become a bit of a buzzword in healthcare lately, but MDT does more than pay lip service.  A cornerstone of the MDT assessment and treatment process is self care, or teaching the patient what they can do to take care of themselves....

Mechanical Pain Apr 12th, 2019

Let's finally answer the big question: What is mechanical pain?  We talked about the 5 ways to irritate a nerve. Compression, Tension, Chemical (inflammation), Thermal, and Behavioral. In its simplest terms, mechanical pain is anything that comes from those first two types of irritation: Compression or Tension. A physical, or...

Pain Mar 24th, 2019

So, we want to understand back and neck pain.  But what is pain? In its simplest terms, Pain is nothing more than a signal to your brain from a nerve ending somewhere in the body. In a properly functioning nervous system, this signal only gets sent when an outside stimulus...

Welcome to the Blog Mar 12th, 2019

We’re officially blogging!  I’m new to this, so bear with me. My name is Dr. Todd Peterson. I’m a chiropractor by trade, but in practice I try to be more of a teacher to help people understand and eliminate pain. I think the way to be the best chiropractor is...