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We Now Offer Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression

We Now Offer Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression

Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression table with someone lying prone.

What is Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression?

Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression is an advanced therapy used to treat problems related to spinal discs. Decompression of the disc is accomplished by using a system of belts which attach to a pulley system on the machine. Gentle tension is added which lengthens the spine, decreases pressure in the disc, and removes pressure on painful impinged nerves.

Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression drawing showing herniated disc.
Normal Disc vs. Herniated Disc

How Does Spinal Decompression Work?

During Decompression Therapy, computerized traction patterns gently stretch the spine and decompress spinal discs. Spinal Decompression creates negative pressure (“vacuum-effect”) in the disc. Because things tend to move from areas of high pressure to low pressure, this negative pressure helps to “suck” the Nuclear Pulposus back inside the Annulus Fibrosis of the damaged disc (see picture of discs above), relieving pressure on nerves. The negative pressure also pulls in fluids, oxygen, and nutrients, rehydrating and restoring nutrition to discs. Spinal experts believe the movement of fluids and nutrients into the disc facilitate the healing process of the disc.

A Decompression session consists of repeated cycles of gentle tension and rest. Decompression naturally happens to some extent when we lie down in bed each night. While lying on your back, disc pressures have been measured around +75 mmHg. But because machine-mediated Spinal Decompression Therapy can create negative pressure in the disc, around -150 mmHg, it is like expedited bed rest without the side effects of inactivity.

Watch Video To See What Happens During Non-Spinal Decompression.

Who Can Benefit From Spinal Decompression?

Spinal Decompression Therapy is an FDA cleared drug-free, surgery-free procedure that effectively treats:

  • low back pain 
  • neck pain
  • radiating arm and leg pain 
  • headaches 

caused by:

  • bulging discs
  • herniated discs
  • sciatica
  • stenosis or narrowing of nerve channels
  • degenerative disc disease
  • facet syndrome
Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression - Human spine showing various problems with the discs

Before Surgery Try Spinal Decompression!

While back surgery may sometimes be the only solution, many health professionals feel strongly that surgery should be used as the last resort, only after trying conservative, noninvasive treatment options such as Chiropractic, Physical Therapy, and Spinal Decompression Therapy. Even with advances in surgical procedures, surgery does come with inherent risks, high costs, lengthy recovery times, and possible complications such as infection or surgical failure. 

Failed Back Surgery Syndrome is a diagnosis used when surgery fails to give the patient relief or improvement of function. Research shows a failure rate of 30%-46% for a lumbar fusion surgery and 19%-25% for a simpler microdiscectomy procedure. Subsequent repeat or revision surgeries have progressively higher failure rates. One should consider all options before turning to surgery. Many who have had a failed back surgery can still benefit from Spinal Decompression Therapy. However, if you have artificial discs, bone implants, or any spinal hardware from previous surgeries, you are NOT a candidate for Spinal Decompression.

What Does Decompression Feel Like?  

Decompression is usually quite comfortable and relaxing. Some people find it so relaxing that they have fallen asleep on the table. Most people say it feels like a gentle stretch in the area being treated. A common misconception is that it should be a forceful pull, stretching muscles. However, with Spinal Decompression, less is more. We use tested protocols, created by Dr. Jay Kennedy, the nation’s foremost authority on Spinal Decompression. The protocols allow us to use enough force to create negative pressure within the disc while keeping the muscles “quiet”. 

While many patients feel initial relief after just a few sessions, others may not feel relief as quickly and should not be discouraged. Every case is unique and some problems are more chronic than others. Whether relief is fast or slow, it is important to stay on the treatment plan. We perform periodic reevaluations so we can adapt to your needs. Stopping treatment early can result in a return of symptoms, often worse than before, wasting time and money. Best results are achieved in committed patients, as discs take time to heal.

How Do I Know if I’m a Candidate for Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression? 

We will do a thorough health history, evaluation and required X-rays to determine if we think Spinal Decompression will help you. Not all people are candidates for Spinal Decompression. Some things that disqualify a person include certain previous back/neck surgeries (having pins, plates, wires, rods, cages, screws, artificial discs, bone implants in your spine), pregnancy, osteoporosis (Dexa T-score -2.5 or worse), abdominal aortic aneurysm, cancer or spinal tumors, certain rare diseases, recent spinal fracture, or recent inguinal hernia. 

Spinal Decompression works, given the chance. Having been around since 1993, there is plenty of research available (just ask us if you want some). Studies have shown a success rate of 86-92%! If accepted as a patient, follow through with the treatment plan for best results!

If you want to see if Spinal Decompression can help you, call our office to schedule or click on the link below.

7 Interesting Facts About Chiropractic You Probably Didn’t Know!

7 Interesting Facts About Chiropractic You Probably Didn’t Know!

The number of people benefitting from chiropractic care continues to rise as more and more people discover the importance of good spinal health. Here are some fun facts about chiropractic that you probably didn’t know!


Chiropractors today are the third largest group of healthcare providers, after medical doctors and dentists. There are roughly 100,000 doctors of chiropractic in active practice globally. Over 35 million people a year seek help from chiropractors for various spinal problems. One million chiropractic adjustments are given every day in the USA! 


The term “chiropractic” is derived from 2 Greek words, cheir which means hand, and pratkos which means done. “Done by Hand”. ✋🤚


The first chiropractic adjustment was given in 1895 by D.D. Palmer (the father of chiropractic) which helped a janitor, Harvey Lillard, regain his hearing after a back injury he suffered 17 years prior. Cool!


Doctors of Chiropractic (DCs) go through a minimum of 4,200 hours of classroom, lab and clinical internships during their 4-year doctoral graduate school program. This is after completing 3-4 years of undergraduate study. Drs. Will & Tammy attended Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, IA. The school was founded by D.D. Palmer. 


In a lawsuit, Wilk vs. the American Medical Association (AMA), which lasted from 1976 – 1990, a group of chiropractors sued the American Medical Association for creating prejudice against the chiropractic profession. 

The chiropractors won. 

The final judgment read, in part, “the American Medical Association (AMA) and its members participated in a conspiracy against chiropractors in violation of the nation’s antitrust laws.” Some of the AMA’s violations included publishing propaganda against chiropractic and implementing an anti-chiropractic program aimed at medical students, medical societies, and the American public. 

Maybe you’ve heard some outdated misinformation about chiropractic – it likely originated from the AMA’s anti-chiropractic campaign decades ago. 


All 32 NFL and all 30 NBA teams have their own chiropractor to boost performance, maintain wellness, and treat musculoskeletal strain and injury. Elite athletes know how chiropractic helps them achieve peak performance!


Chiropractic is incredibly safe and effective! Malpractice insurance rates for chiropractors are a small fraction when compared of those for doctors who use pharmaceutical & surgical interventions. Chiropractic patients report a high level of satisfaction with their chiropractic care!

If you are new to chiropractic, click here for FAQ’s!

5 Reasons to Seek Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident

5 Reasons to Seek Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident

With many car accidents, the injuries are obvious and dramatic such as broken bones, lacerations, and concussions. Injuries of these types require immediate emergency care.

Most car accidents are less severe, however, and injuries are not always immediately apparent. Symptoms of whiplash, for example, can develop over the first hours and days following a collision.

Symptoms that may take time to develop include: neck pain, back pain, headache, jaw pain, pain between shoulders, reduced range of motion in neck or back, sore wrist, ankle, or knee, numbness or tingling in arms, hands, legs, or feet, full-feeling in ears, difficulty sleeping, or decreased memory.

During and immediately after the accident, the body releases adrenalin, a hormone that is involved in the fight or flight response. As the adrenaline wears off, pain will start to be felt.

The body starts to begin the healing process by increasing inflammation and spasm of the affected areas, thereby initiating painful sensations.

Here are 5 reasons to start chiropractic care right after a car accident:

1. You Want Your Spine to Heal in Proper Alignment

We are very skilled at working with patients suffering from whiplash.

People may think whiplash is just about neck and shoulder pain, but other symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, hearing and vision changes may also be present. We do a thorough examination and specific x-rays to diagnose whiplash.

You may ask, “Won’t I just get better without doing anything at all?” Your spine will heal after an accident even if you seek no help. A broken arm will heal without a cast too. It will just heal in a crooked, deformed position which will affect its function. It’s the same with the spine. The spine will heal in a crooked, misaligned position, leading to future chronic pain and possible arthritis in the spinal joints affected. That leads to decreased function of the spine, which we want to avoid.

Getting in to see us right away after a car accident restores proper alignment and motion and gives you a much better chance of full recovery

2. Drug-Free, Surgery-Free Symptom Relief

Chiropractic care is recognized as the leading healthcare discipline for those looking for drug-free, surgery-free solutions to their pain.

Beginning chiropractic care right after a car accident decreases the chance that you will take addictive pain drugs which temporarily mask the pain and do not correct the problem anyway.

With the devastating opioid addiction crisis our country faces, we are wise to consider alternatives for ourselves and our families.

Delay in starting care soon after a car accident may eventually lead to chronic spinal degeneration for which surgery may be the only option. 

3. Restores Range of Motion & Flexibility to the Spine

We identify the parts of your spine that are not moving as they should be. Adjustments restore the motion.

A flexible spine is a strong spine. A rigid spine is a weak spine. Think of a palm tree in a hurricane. The flexible trunk gives the tree a good chance of surviving hurricane force winds.

After a car accident, the spine may feel rigid due to inflammation and muscle spasm. If a second car accident occurs while in a rigid state, the chance for more serious injury increases.

Chiropractic adjustments restore flexibility to the spine. Scar tissue can also form on the injured muscles causing a person to feel stiff. Adjustments and soft tissue techniques provide help to avoid scar tissue formation.

4. Decreases Inflammation

Acute inflammation right after an injury is the body’s way of starting the healing process and stabilizing the area.

However, when inflammation becomes chronic, damage to the joints and tissues can occur, increasing the time it takes to heal.

Corrective chiropractic care relieves tension and stress from the spine, thereby decreasing inflammation.

We also teach patients what to do at home between adjustments to continue improving range of motion and decreasing inflammation.

5. Documents Your Injuries For a Successful Insurance Claim

When you’re in a car accident, it is important to document all symptoms that you feel immediately and those that develop over the next few days and weeks.

At our office, we collect the needed documentation which includes the details of the accident, symptoms before, during, and after the accident, x-rays, and functional assessments at intervals to monitor progress.

Having the proper documentation of injuries is required when dealing with insurance companies and lawyers.

In Summary

Many people involved in car accidents walk away without any obvious injury. Even though they may not look or feel injured initially, the forces of the impact on the spine need to be evaluated, the sooner the better. Left untreated, chronic inflammation and degeneration/arthritis is more likely to occur.

Corrective chiropractic is a drug-free, surgery-free, non-invasive method to restore normal spinal range of motion, decrease inflammation, and improve function after car accidents.  

Have you or a loved one been involved in a car accident? If so, click button below to schedule an appointment in our Moorhead, MN office.

Walking for Back Pain and Health

Walking for Back Pain and Health

“The best thing you can do after your adjustment is go for a walk. The worst thing you can do is go home and sit.” If you’ve been to our office, you’ve likely heard us say that. Walking for back pain is an important part of most care plans we prescribe. It is easy, free, can be done inside or out depending on weather, and has numerous health benefits. 

Benefits of Walking for Back Pain

According to Harvard Medical School, walking causes weight loss, tames a sweet tooth, lowers risk of breast cancer, boosts immune function, and eases joint pain. Not only does walking reduce arthritis-related pain, but five to six miles of walking per week can stop arthritis from forming at all. Walking not only lubricates the joints, it strengthens the muscles that surround them. As you strengthen the muscles, they pull on the long bones which strengthens them as well, having a positive impact on osteoporosis. In chiropractic school, we learned the best way to prevent osteoporosis is exercise, including walking and weight training. 

Another benefit of walking involves the lymphatic system. The lymph system is similar to the heart and blood vessel system that pump blood throughout the body. Instead of blood, the lymph system pumps clear fluid containing toxins to be removed. There is no heart muscle to pump this fluid. It relies on motion of the body including breathing, walking, and muscle movement. Lack of movement can cause fluid build up in the body. 

Getting Started Walking

Before beginning any exercise program, including walking, speak to your doctor. There are other things to consider too. First, when was your last chiropractic adjustment? If the spine or pelvis is out of alignment, that puts stress on the hip, knee, ankle, and foot, which can lead to injury and you being sidelined. Second, invest in a great pair of walking shoes. Many stores today will help determine which shoe is right for you. You may even consider custom orthotics for added support. We offer Foot Levelers custom foot orthotics, casted right in our office. Third, start slow. If you haven’t walked or exercised much recently, don’t overdo it in the beginning. Start with short walks and build your time slowly. Fourth, walking doesn’t have to be vigorous to be beneficial. Slow, relaxing walks are great too! Walk outside as often as possible – being out in nature has a long list of health benefits itself!

Here are some photos from our outdoor walks this past year…

Chiropractic and the Opioid Epidemic

Chiropractic and the Opioid Epidemic

What Are Opioids

Doctors prescribe opioids (such as methadone, oxycodone and hydrocodone) to treat moderate-to-severe pain often following injury or surgery. Prescriptions for non-standard uses such as back pain and osteoarthritis have increased dramatically in recent years. Sales of prescription opioids have quadrupled since 1999. Nearly a quarter billion opioid prescriptions were written in 2013.

How We Got Here

From “In the late 1990s, pharmaceutical companies reassured the medical community that patients would not become addicted to prescription opioid pain relievers, and healthcare providers began to prescribe them at greater rates. This subsequently led to widespread diversion and misuse of these medications before it became clear that these medications could indeed be highly addictive. Opioid overdose rates began to increase. In 2015, more than 33,000 Americans died as a result of an opioid overdose, including prescription opioids, heroin, and illicitly manufactured fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid.”

Drug-Free Alternative to Pain

The Food and Drug Administration has proposed changes to the way it educates healthcare providers on treating pain, including the use of chiropractic care and other non-drug solutions. Just yesterday, President Trump signed legislation reaffirming the FDA’s changes. The American College of Physicians announced earlier this year that it would recommend non-surgical approaches such as chiropractic as the first option to treat lower back pain.

Chiropractic treatment takes a broader approach to healthcare by rectifying the body’s structural problems which restores healthy, natural flow to allow the body to heal itself naturally, thus eliminating the need for hard-core opioid treatments.

Over the last 20 years, we have helped thousands of patients in our office with pain in a drug-free, surgery-free manner. On the first visit, we do a thorough examination, x-rays (if needed), a review of our findings, and a spinal adjustment. If you’re in pain, don’t wait to take action. Call us today.

Headaches and Chiropractic

Headaches and Chiropractic

Headaches and Chiropractic

Although the International Headache Society lists 129 different types of headaches, the general categories are tension, cluster and migraine with associate pain being described as sharp, stabbing, dull, throbbing and vice-like. Migraine with or without aura is the most common form of acute recurrent headache in children.

Different types of physical, chemical and emotional stress— including fatigue, worry, noise, fluorescent lights, travel, improper sleep, smoke and food additives such as MSG and nitrates, often trigger headaches.

Although these things may trigger a headache, the actual cause of the headache is often a series of traumatic or repetitive micro-traumatic events— including motor vehicle accidents, contact sports, postural habits, whiplash and occupational tasks.

Headaches and other symptoms may take weeks, months and even years to show up following these events.

“The negative impact of chronic headaches on quality of life, families, and productivity can be significant and is generally underrated by the medical profession.” 

University of Maryland Medical Center

Causes of Headaches 

Although headaches are not caused by just one specific source, a large amount of research clearly demonstrates that the majority of headaches are caused by problems in the cervical (neck) region of the spine. The vertebra of the cervical spine can become misaligned because of excessive or repetitive stress.

These misalignments, also known as“vertebral subluxations” irritate the nerves in the neck and cause excessive muscle tension, all of which can contribute to a wide variety of headaches.

Treatment for Headaches

Headaches have commonly been treated with medications such as aspirin or Tylenol.

Americans consume 80 billion aspirin tablets each year. Aspirin, which is the active ingredient in more than 50 over the counter medications, may temporarily relieve the discomfort of the headache, but it does little to correct the cause of the problem.

Moreover, its use has been associated with bleeding ulcers, Reyes syndrome and kidney disorders.

Taking painkillers on a regular basis can make subsequent headaches even worse, causing a condition known as “rebound headache” or “medical overuse headache”.

An increasing number of headache victims are turning to Chiropractic for help. This only makes sense as the Doctor of Chiropractic specializes in the structure of the spine and its protective relationship to the nervous system. Chiropractors detect and correct spinal misalignments by physically adjusting the spine to restore its proper structural position.

This removes the spinal stress and allows the nervous system to function correctly. The effectiveness of Chiropractic in resolving headaches has been well documented in research and case studies all over the world.

This post contains excerpts from a report “Headaches and Chiropractic”. For a complete copy of the report contact our office and we will email it to you.

Ear Infections and Chiropractic

Ear Infections and Chiropractic

Infection of the middle ear, or acute otitis media, is a common symptom among children. In fact, it is the most common cause of fever in the early years of life. This condition may be very painful and after several recurring infections, may result in permanent damage.

The Medical Approach:

A popular medical method of treatment of otitis media is prescription of oral antibiotics, usually amoxicillin. According to the Journal of American Medical Association (Dec 1991), however, amoxicillin with and without decongestant is not effective for the treatment of persistent asymptomatic middle-ear effusions (fluids) in infants and children. In fact, after administration of amoxicillin, occurrence of fluids in the ear was two to six times greater.

A Different Approach to Childhood Ear Infections:

Research shows that upper respiratory infections, including otitis media may be caused by improper drainage of the deep neck lymphatics. In these cases, a doctor looking in your child’s ear will see a build up of fluid behind the tympanic membrane (ear drum), with the inside of the ear appearing inflamed and the ear drum bulging. The most recent research suggests reduced drainage or blockage in the drainage system of the cervical (neck) lymphatic chains causes a reduction in the lymphatic outflow from the eustachian tube. This allows fluid to build up in the inner ear, making it an inviting environment for bacteria and viruses. Improper drainage of this fluid is caused by a combination of events. Increased muscle tone or muscle spasms, coupled with a child’s already small drainage system, appear to be the  major factors.

The Chiropractic Approach:

Vertebrae fit together so that the nerve supply produced by your brain may filter down your spinal cord and out over your nerves. This nerve supply is responsible for growth, repair, and healing your entire body. When vertebrae are out of their natural alignment, nerves become stretched or twisted and this vital communication system is disrupted.

Correction of the vertebral subluxations is performed by a Chiropractor. This is done by gently lining up the vertebrae in their natural position. Chiropractic adjustments applied to the neck corrects subluxations, restores normal function, and reduces or eliminates the tense neck musculature responsible for blocking the normal drainage of the fluid. As this obstruction to the lymphatic system is removed, the excess fluid in the ears drains. The inviting environment for bacteria and viruses to grow is removed, and the infection can be healed. Once normal drainage is restored, the recurrence of the ear infection is diminished or nonexistent.

For all your chiropractic needs in the Fargo-Moorhead and surrounding areas, call our office for an appointment or just walk-in during office hours.


Pregnancy and Chiropractic

Pregnancy and Chiropractic


Chiropractic if you are pregnant?? ABSOLUTELY!! Keeping your spine free from vertebral subluxation complex is one of the best things you can do if you are pregnant. If there’s one group of people who need chiropractic spinal checkups more than any other, it’s pregnant women.

Pregnant women need their bodies to be as healthy and as strong as possible in order to handle the rigors of pregnancy and childbirth. Chiropractic care will help ensure that the reproductive and other systems so essential for a healthy pregnancy receive a nerve supply from the spinal column without interference. The slightest interference to the nerve supply could adversely affect the mother and developing fetus.


Pregnant women have many concerns: staying pregnant, carrying the baby to full-term, morning sickness, the normal development of the baby, backaches, leg pain, not to mention a safe labor.

Can Chiropractic care help ease their minds? In the Journal of American Osteopathic Association, a number of practitioners commented on the effectiveness of spinal care for pregnant women. The following are just a few of their remarks:

“For normal patients, correction of vertebral subluxations definitely helps normal function and rehabilitation. Manipulations can be of great value in normalizing the body functions of women with problems of pregnancy, such as toxemia.”

“Manipulative therapy…normalizes functions of the pituitary, adrenal, ovarian, and placental systems…Postpartum depression is a rarity in patients receiving manipulative therapy.”


Q:Is Chiropractic safe in pregnancy?
A: Very safe and very sensible for both mother and baby.

Q: How late in pregnancy is it possible to get an adjustment?
A: Patients have received adjustments even during labor.

Q: Can spinal care help with postpartum depression?
A: Chiropractic’s beneficial effects on emotional stress and personality have been noted and documented.

Q: Can my baby receive chiropractic care?
A: Infants a few hours old have been given spinal checkups and adjustments (if needed).

For all your chiropractic needs, call our office for an appointment.


Protecting Your Health

Protecting Your Health

Our oldest son, Will, recently graduated from Air Force Basic Training at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, TX. We were able to make the drive down there to see him graduate. It was a very special weekend for our family. We were able to watch him march with his flight to receive his coin, tour his dorm, watch him march in parade, say his oath, tour the base, and take him off base to see San Antonio. On Sunday, we attended church with him on base. The pastor talked about “Grief” that Sunday. He listed all sorts of losses that cause grief. One of the losses that I particularly remember was the loss of health. Health is one of those things many people take for granted. Some don’t even think about health until they have a problem with it. Loss of health is very devastating – we’ve seen this in our office over the years: fathers  and mothers unable to provide for their family because of debilitating pain, children unable to attend school regularly, retirees unable to enjoy retirement. The pastor, himself, faced a health problem that threatened to end his military career. It was a good reminder to take care of ourselves. We are each ultimately responsible for our own health. The body is constantly regenerating cells – remarkably every few years we have a completely new body. The things we do, eat, read, and consume today are the things our bodies use to make the new cells tomorrow.

Here are some ways to help your body build strong cells tomorrow:

  • get regular chiropractic adjustments to keep the nervous system functioning optimally
  • eat only real food, homemade from scratch as often as possible- batch cooking for busy families
  • drink mostly water
  • keep moving – extended periods of sitting are as bad for your health as smoking
  • read something good for the body, mind, spirit every day
  • spend some time outdoors everyday
  • unplug from all media for an entire day or more each month

For all your chiropractic needs, call our office for an appointment or just walk in during office hours.

How Important is Posture on Developing Spines?

How Important is Posture on Developing Spines?

There are numerous studies coming out showing the effects of devices and increased use of technology on developing brains. The news isn’t good. Some of the side effects include increases in depression and anxiety, addiction to dopamine (the “feel good” hormone), decreased attention span, decrease in interpersonal relationship development, and decreased motivation to take action. There are negative effects on the developing spine as well. Balance is key here – with all this flexion, chiropractic adjustments and extension exercises are so important to a developing spine! A normal spine will have an “S-shaped” curve when viewed from the side. Too much flexion without enough extension to balance it out creates a “C-shaped” spine (as you can see in the cartoon below). This leads to forward head carriage, degeneration, arthritis, and a host of other posture and health problems, including the stooped posture and “Dowager’s hump” in the upper back. Remember: structure = function; poor structure = poor function. Since technology is here to stay, we have to adjust our lives to maintain good structure/posture. In our office, we do a postural analysis, range of motion analysis, and chiropractic analysis to determine the areas in the spine that are out of balance and correct these areas so proper posture is maintained. Call for appointment or just walk in during office hours!