Category Archives: Arthritis

Naturally Adjusted: Treating Neck Pain (Part 1)

Part I: The Problem

My neck has been bothersome for a very long time… decades really.  Goodness knows why I never really did anything about it. I just got used to being stiff or sore and having tight shoulders.  Yoga always helped.  I just explained away the occasional tingles in my fingers as a result of my bag being too heavy.

After I fell in March of 2013, my neck issues became significantly worse.  I had so many other things to worry about, like how to get my mouth put back together, I couldn’t handle that too.  I just figured with yoga and time, it would improve.  It always did before.  Not this time.  By March of this year, it caused me so much pain and discomfort, I could barely stand it. It would start in the left side of my neck and radiate up to my temple and down my shoulder.  Sometimes, I even felt it in my fingers.  Desperate for some relief, I found a chiropractor who took my health insurance.

My first appointment was an eye-opener.  My new chiropractor spent about an hour and 20 minutes with me.  I was impressed by how thorough he was. He asked me a lot of questions about and in addition to the paperwork I filled out.  He observed my standing and sitting posture.  He weighed me to see if I put more weight on one foot than the other (I do…10 pounds.)  He checked the sensitivity on both sides of my body and compared one side to the other.  He checked my spinal alignment and flexibility.  He took several X-rays of my neck.  He had been cracking jokes and telling stories while he worked but when he saw the X-rays, he looked concerned and grew quiet.

He didn’t want to give me a full diagnosis until after he got my MRI from the hospital but he showed me the X-ray and pointed at three of my vertebrae.  “You see how jagged those three are compared to the others?”  I did.  He went on to explain that he never saw that much damage in someone as young as I was and it couldn’t have been caused by just the fall.  Since he mentioned it, I remembered older injuries: a car accident at 17.  A cyst had been removed from my neck as baby.  Oh yeah, I had been born with a broken collar bone!

My first adjustment was subtle.  He wanted to do a full work-up before he put a treatment plan together for me but it was obvious I was suffering.  He wanted me to be more comfortable.  I can’t say that first appointment or even the first several were like a miracle fix.  I had a lot of damage and it was going to take some time to reverse.  I felt enough of a shift though that I knew I was on the right track.

The MRI revealed a bulging disc and two herniated discs.  One of the hernias even had its own little hernia.  The discs were pressing on the surrounding nerves, creating the radiating pain, intermittent numbness and tingling. The X-ray had, as mentioned, shown the three degenerated vertebrae.  Essentially, I have spinal arthritis due to injury.  The overall functionality of my neck was at about 65%.  Suffice it to say, my neck was (pardon my French) fucked up!  Luckily, I do have a knack for finding very confident, competent practitioners. My chiropractor felt certain he could get me back up to 90-95% functionality and relieve the pain.

To be continued….

Many blessings,



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Natural Pain-Relieving Beverage: Turmeric Milk

A few months ago, I found out that my neck had been injured quite severely over the years. I will go into more detail on this in a future post but one of the things I found out is that I essentially have arthritis in my neck, as a result.

I knew that I wanted to find a more natural way of handling the pain, which at times could be quite severe. So, I started researching natural remedies and turmeric kept coming up again and again.

Turmeric is an Asian spice. You have probably had it in curry or commercially-produced yellow mustard. Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory. Curcumin is the component in turmeric that is most often cited for blocking inflammation and having positive effects in treating arthritis. Turmeric has also shown promising results in treating and preventing cancer, as well as, Alzheimer’s.

I add turmeric into certain dishes and often include it in my salad dressing. One of the tastiest ways that I have discovered to take turmeric is to drink it in a warm beverage. It tastes a bit like chai tea but a little earthier

Turmeric Milk:

One Cup of Milk (I use almond milk)

One Heaping Teaspoon of Turmeric

One Teaspoon of Honey

A Generous Sprinkle of Cinnamon

A Pinch of Nutmeg

Put the cup of milk in a saucepan and heat on low. Add the other ingredients. Stir until the honey is dissolved. Do not boil it! Just gently warm it. It should be pleasantly warm, not hot. Put in your favorite mug and enjoy!

Will you try Turmeric Milk? Do you have a favorite natural and delicious drink to deal with a health ailment? Let me know in the comments section. I would love to hear from you.

Many blessings to All,


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