Bad Balance is Associated With Brain Damage And Decline
I recently came across this study from Japan that found an association between postural instability (bad balance) and early pathological changes in the brain and functional decline, even in apparently healthy subjects. Check out the article, read my insights, and also read the case of a young boy with a traumatic brain injury leading to balance and coordination problems who was able to improve with the help of Chiropractic! – Dr. Callum Peever
The postural instability was identified and assessed with a one-leg standing time test and posturography findings. I am uncertain what specifically posturography entails, but can deduce that it is a measure of a person’s posture. I do understand one-leg standing times and tests and use it frequently in my chiropractic office in Caledonia.
One Leg standing tests in my Chiropractic Offices in Caledonia
One-leg standing is an important function of a functioning body.
If you cannot stand on one leg, you cannot confidently walk or go up stairs, and it is also difficult to walk and down stairs.
This greatly impedes a person’s ability to maintain there independence and I will usually say that if you cannot stand on one leg for over 5 seconds – you need a cane or support.
The coordination of balancing on two legs against gravity is challenging for the body, but we do get good at it through our neurodevelopment as a child.
Standing on one leg is much more difficult, but once again our bodies do get impressively good at coordinating all of the neurological reflexes and mechanical motions required to stand on one leg well.
How do you use one leg standing time in your Caledonia Chiropractic office?
I will typically have patients stand on one leg or balance with their eyes closed when undergoing a chiropractic exam to determine how well their brain is able to connect/communicate/coordinate their body against gravity.
I notice that people with a health history of hitting their heads will be more unstable when attempting to balance.
It is interesting is to see that these researchers in Japan found an association between postural instability and cognitive decline and brain damage.
Improving one leg standing tests in an elderly chiropractor patient –
In my chiropractic offices I have seen patients improve their one leg standing times, postures, and balance while undergoing regular chiropractic care.
John is a chiropractic patient in his 90’s who was very unstable when I first started working with him. He was also very rude and could not handle the other social interactions throughout the waiting room at my chiropractic clinic. Through weekly chiropractic adjustments it has been amazing to see the improvements in John’s balance over the year. His confidence has also noticeably improved and his demeanor with other people.
Even though this study from Japan did not discuss improvements in posture and spinal mechanics impacting the health of the brain, we do see the impact in our chiropractic offices, such as in John. There are studies regarding neuroplasticity that highlight the amazing ability of the brain to continue to change, grow, and improve even at any age.
If you are noticing that your balance is decreasing, start making an impact to improve it now as it can be associated with cognitive decline and brain damage.
Recognize that Chiropractic care is aimed at helping keep your nervous system clear of interference so that the brain can communicate well with the body, which can help you improve your balance in life and help you live well.
Here is a 2018 research study from the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research that highlights the improvement in stability of 9 separate patients when measured by posturography.
Are there other studies I could read if I am curious to learn more?
Here’s another recent study “…showed statistically significant differences in static balance parameters between patients with spinal canal stenosis compared with the asymptomatic group.” -A comparative analysis of static balance between patients with lumbar spinal canal stenosis and asymptomatic participants.
Here is a 2015 study showing excellent results of patients being helped by chiropractic care when experiencing dizziness or balance disorders :
And here is a pdf report about how Chiropractic adjustments can make you smarter! Can Chiropractic Adjustments Make you Smarter PDF
Here to help you improve your brain health through chiropractic care!
Dr. Callum Peever – Chiropractor in Caledonia at Caledonia Family Chiropractic
Improvement in a young patient with a traumatic brain injury that led to balance problems
The following are excerpts from a 2016 research article from the journal of pediatric, maternal, and family health regarding the case of a boy who had a traumatic brain injury causing many coordination and balance problems. Fortunately for this boy, his family sought chiropractic care and he was able to improve his coordinate and balance, leading to more confidence and improved quality of life. Amazing! – Dr. Callum Peever – Chiropractor in Caledonia at Erin Mill Optimum Health
“Clinical Features: An 11-year-old male presents for chiropractic care with a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a result of a motor vehicle collision 5 years prior. The patient lacked proper motor control and use of his left hand and lacked balance and coordination of the lower extremities. The patient had difficulties with speech and was unable to find balance of a global wobble board and took 5 minutes to find balance on a uniplanar wobble board and held it for 5 seconds.”
“Intervention and Outcome: The patient received chiropractic adjustments characterized as high velocity, low amplitude (HVLA) thrust type known as Diversified and Thompson Technique. In addition to adjustments, neuromuscular re-education was utilized to provide increased coordination for left upper extremities and proprioception for lower extremities. The patient received care over a period of eight months consisting of 28 visits. As a result of the care he received, the patient demonstrated improved coordination, is able to balance on a global wobble board, is better able to enunciate words and has an improved quality of life.”
“Conclusion: This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in children with traumatic brain injury.”
“Case Narrative: An 11-year-old boy with a traumatic brain injury 5 years prior involving many fractures leading to decreased strength and coordination. The mother stated previous practitioners reported there was nothing more that could be done to improve her son’s coordination. On postural examination, the patient demonstrated an anterior head carriage with bilateral rounded shoulders.”
“The patient received care over a period of 8 months consisting of 28 visits. As a result of the care he received, the patient demonstrated improved coordination, is able to perform finger-to-nose without hitting himself, is able to balance on the global wobble board, and is better able to enunciate words. The patient’s mother stated “The other day he ran to me saying he was able to tie his shoes and had me watch him. He was not able to button his pants, dress himself, or tie his shoes before coming here to the clinic. Now he is able to button his pants, dress himself, and tie his shoes without any help. He is getting better grades in school and is now participating in sports and activities in his Physical Education class. He is so much happier and more independent.””
“Conclusion: The case study demonstrates that chiropractic combined with neuromuscular re-education and therapeutic exercises may be effective in improving coordination, strength and balance due to a Traumatic Brain Injury.”
Improvement in Balance in a 74 year old man receiving Chiropractic Care
Below is another study showing how Chiropractic care was able to assist a man in his 70’s with his balance. The study measured this as joint position sense, postural stability, and reaction time. They note that the patient was originally unable to keep his balance when standing still with his eyes closed. After Chiropractic care the patient was able to balance with his eyes closed while standing on a foam cushion! This greatly helps this person keep up with the things that he wants to do throughout his day, and makes life that much more enjoyable. Combine this with what we have learned above and it gives us hope and confidence that we can improve our brain’s ability to coordinate and balance our body in our environments which can in turn assist in “growing our brain”!
Read the article’s abstract below and connect to the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research for the full article.
Here to help you regain your balance in Caledonia,
-Dr. Callum Peever
Objective: To describe and discuss improvements in sensorimotor function in a 74-year-old male receiving chiropractic care.
Clinical Features: A 74-year-old male patient presented for chiropractic care as a participant in a chiropractic clinical trial.
Intervention and Outcome: The patient received Torque Release Technique Chiropractic Care for three months. After the three months of care, significant improvements were observed in postural stability, joint position sense and reaction time.
Conclusion: This case report documents the improvement in sensorimotor function in a 74-year-old male receiving chiropractic care. Further research is required to determine the role chiropractors may play in improving sensorimotor function in older people.”