Many of us have heard how our bodies regenerates cells at a rate that equals what is basically a new body every 7 years or so. Cells replicate and give birth to new cells, in essence, copies of the one prior. However, there is one major system of the body that does not have the ability for cellular replication as found in other places of the body. In fact, if there is any regeneration, it’s very, very rare, and not nearly at the rate as the rest of the body. That system….?
The Nerve System.
Our nerve system, which is the master coordinator of all functions within the body, is such a delicate and important system, that it is the one main system protected by bone (in the case of the brain and spinal cord).
So how does this system modify itself throughout one’s lifetime? There’s a neat biological trick called neuroplasticity. This is when the nerve cell forms new connections to make up for an area lacking in connections, sometimes where there has been a break in the neurological chain, or more often, in the case of learning. The synapses of a nerve can branch out and form new connections to reinforce a behavior, learn a new skill, help move a skill to a different area of the brain (in the case of injuries) and so on. It was originally thought that the brain didn’t modify or change after childhood…that it was hardwired, but that simply isn’t the case.
When it comes to healing and maintaining the nervous system, a few things are necessary for optimal health and function:
Proper nutrition – incorrect nutrition leaves the nervous system at a disadvantage. It must constantly nourish itself and properly detoxify if it is too function ideally. Essential fatty acids, magnesium, and oxygen are but a few of the necessary ingredients it needs.
Proper cerebrospinal fluid flow (CSF) – this fluid acts as a cushion, coolant, and transport system for both nutrition AND detoxification. Without proper flow, the brain can overheat, seize or have brain damage and cellular death. This fluid also helps control how much pressure is exerted on the brain and spinal tissue. Did you know that one of the main generators of CSF flow is your sacro-occiptial (craniosacral) system?
Optimal input from the spinal system – the brain LIVES on input from it’s nerve system via MOVEMENT. When our joints move, we send input into the neuro-spinal system, something that is essential for normal neurological function. Without it, the brain starts to wither. It also relies on gravitational input…a force that has been discovered quite useful in actually healing the brain after injuries.
In Chiropractic practice, we see people with symptoms arising out of neurological dysfunction quite often. From injuries like concussions and head trauma to psychological symptoms like depression and anxiety, many symptoms can see improvement by optimizing neurological health as described above and ensuring that the neuro-spinal system is receiving what is optimal and pure for its functionality and reducing what is toxic and deficient.
Less than a decade ago, one of the most elite hockey players in the game, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, suffered a major concussion that looked as if it was going to end his career. After months of rehab with the neuro team at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Sidney was seemingly hitting a roadblock. He was in no condition to get back on the ice, let alone skate and play hockey at the level he previously enjoyed. This was a major blow not just to the Penguin organization and its fans, but to the game of hockey, as this young man was shaping up to be one of the all-time greats.
Mr. Crosby was then sent down to my alma mater, Life University, under the care of Dr. Ted Carrick, a Chiropractic Neurologist. These types of Chiropractors are on the forefront of neurological science in our country, spearheading brain and other neurological research that is truly changing the way neurology is practiced. Using various techniques, including the-now-famous GYROSTIM vestibular rehab chair, Dr. Carrick had Sidney skating within 10 days and had him markedly improved within a month. Sidney then returned to professional hockey after his neuro team essentially gave up on him just a few months prior. He was then sent back to his field chiropractor to continue treatment as he rejoined his hockey team to prepare for the next season.
This vestibular brain rehab was a perfect combination of addressing the key components I described earlier in this article to bring about optimal NEUROPLASTICITY in Mr. Crosby’s brain and is a perfect example of how something was helped that what was considered seemingly incurable only 15 years ago.
One need not be a professional hockey player to experience optimal health and healing. We welcome any requests from our readers for a one-on-one consult to get to the bottom of why you aren’t experiencing ideal health.