A Christmas of Hope

As of press time it’s 55 days to Christmas..8 weeks. I’m not trying to jump the gun and forget Thanksgiving. I simply love Christmas! I love what it stands for. I love the time with family. I love the weather, the visiting with people, seeing people shopping, I love the music. All of it! Recently I was driving home from Oklahoma and I was thinking about Christmas and how, for some people, it isn’t fun. Some people will have their headaches. Some people will not enjoy visiting because of their pain. Some will have to leave their relatives house early because of a heath problem. Some are groggy because of the medications. I realized that some people will be sitting there wishing they could have a good time. They will be sitting there thinking about how they are such a fun person to be around and they love to laugh and they love to visit and they love to play games and tickle grandkids but they just aren’t in the mood because of their pain or because of their headaches or because of their medication. Maybe they even used to be a fun loving person but over the last several years that spirit of happiness and that grateful attitude and that positive outlook are all gone. The are a different person now and because of their silent struggle people just assume they are “crabby” all the time…but they don’t want to be. Some of these people even say “I just deal with it” yet their families are the ones who take the brunt of their frustration. I know because that was me. I know because it has been my relatives. I know because I have these conversations all the time at our clinic. I know this happens and it breaks my heart. To think that some people are out there not expressing life because of a problem… A problem that we have great results with. I had a conversation with a guy who really opened up to me about his back pain. He told me “I don’t like to do this,” holding up a beer can, “I drink because it is all that will take my mind off of the pain.” Let me tell you those people struggling are in your family. They are in your neighborhood. You go to church with them, you work with them. They would love to be different and be happy…but they cannot get past their pain. They cannot get past their limitation.

The reason I am having this conversation with you is this; It is 55 days to Christmas. The vast majority of people that come into our clinic get marked improvement in their health or their pain in the first 60 days. Many have relief sooner than that. We, you and I, could give the people you know a Christmas they hope for. We could make this Christmas memorable because for once they didn’t have a headache. They didn’t have back pain. Their arms weren’t numb. They could eat with no acid reflux, for once they were not groggy from the medication. For once their diagnosis didn’t hold them back. They could LIVE! I am asking you to focus on sending those people you know into our clinic for an appointment so we can change their life. I love the scriptures. I love the promise’s. Like these: Isaiah 53 “By His stripes we are healed,” I love Psalm 139, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made!” I love Matthew 22 “Love God. Love people.” Thats what we do! This is a way we can love people, help them heal and help them live the wonderful life God made them for. I can’t reach everyone. You can help. Please help them get the help they deserve. Maybe it’s you. Maybe it is someone you know. Whatever it is. Call us today 605-428-4778. Together we can change someones life.

God Bless,

Dr. Seth Severtson- Chiropractor

I don’t believe in germs….

I commonly make the reference that: I don’t believe in germs or I don’t believe in a certain diagnosis or disease.

I’m not trying to be difficult. My reasoning is two-fold:

First – Germs

Dr. Palmer (Founder of chiropractic) said “If the germ theory of disease were true no one would be alive to believe it.” I love that quote!

What he is saying is that it isn’t the germ that make you sick. It is your susceptibility. We already know that; if one person in your house is dealing with flu symptoms, some or none may “get” sick. We say “…well they were immune to the bug.” Or “something is going around.” Why is it that my family rarely catches those things that are going around? My kids are at daycare and eat dirt for a living. I am in a clinic with people all day…yet we seem to manage not “catching” much of anything. Why?

….it isn’t the “bug” that is the problem…it is your immune system which is affected by your spine, your stress levels and what you are eating. In fact many of you have heard of Louis Pastuer, the founder of the “Germ Theory.”

BUT,

Did you know that simultaneously in history there was a competing view and much controversy surrounding this issue?
The other side of the coin was put forth by Antione Bechamp (and colleague Claude Bernard) He believed that these microorganisms could not produce disease in a healthy host and rather these “germs” were in fact chemical byproducts of the diseased tissue. And he could prove it. And did prove it.

Just like skid marks at an accident didn’t cause the accident. They were the byproduct of the accident.

But his viewpoints was suppressed and today the Germ Theory of sickness rules.

ODDLY ENOUGH….on his deathbed Pastuer recants his germ theory and says;

“Bernard was correct. I was wrong. The microbe (germ) is nothing. The terrain (milieu) is everything.”

Imagine how life would be different had his theory won the day!

Finally -Disease and diagnosis: We spend BILLIONS of dollars to name a disease. MRI’s, blood work, lab tests, scans, images….all to name something. Think about that. We justify it with “well if we don’t know what it is we cannot treat it” or “lets rule it out.” Fair enough –  but naming it changes nothing because medicine will do nothing to treat the cause…only manage the symptoms. It’s not their fault. 75% of disease is lifestyle and you cannot medicate your way out of something you lived your way into. Makes no sense.

We spend tons of money to rule something out” but the elephant in the room that no one addresses is maybe we need to RULE IN the idea that people make bad lifestyle choices and we need to change that first. Healthcare Reform won’t come from the government down. We will not make more people healthy by someone else paying for their bad choices. It will come from people reforming their lives…

Hans Selye M.D. is known as the “Father of Stress” was sitting in diagnosis class in Med school one day. While teacher presented a case study of a patient with xyz symptoms, Selye was daydreaming. His teacher noticed this and called on him, “Selye! What is wrong with this patient?” Selye responded…”He’s sick..”

Genius. He developed the “syndrome of just being sick” which later became the General Adaptation Syndrome. Which basically says your body is attempting to adapt to an unhealthy stressful environment in the best way it knows how. Those things called “symptoms” are not the problem, instead they are your body intelligently adapting to what you have done to it. To treat the symptoms is to literally takes away your body’s ability to fight. It is tying your own hands behind your back in a fight…

The goal then is not to manage the symptoms but rather to correct the pathological environment that allows germs to live and your body to be stressed and sick..

Thats what we do at our clinic. We adjust subluxations in the spine and we give lifestyle advice. Not to manage symptoms and sickness but to improve your body’s chance of being healthy. Just like going to the gym, eating broccoli and drinking water and getting adjusted. You do those things always for the rest of your life to PROMOTE health not to fight a certain symptom.

Consider this last quote from a colleague as we close:

Subluxation equals susceptibility.

Point being, when a child is subluxated they are more likely to suffer from ear infections, autism and ADHD, gluten and dairy intolerance, vaccine injury, allergies and asthma, etc. When an athlete is subluxated they are more likely to suffer and injury or poor performance. When an adult is subluxated they are more likely to experience pain and headache, depression and anxiety, gut and immune issues…

When anyone is subluxated the stress of day to day living (thoughts, traumas, toxins) become more obtrusive and obstructive, because their ability to adapt and overcome is limited.

Bottom line….you need to get your spine checked regularly to maintain optimal function.

Join our mission of getting sick people well and helping healthy people stay that way!

We look forward to adjusting you, your family and your friends soon. Come on in!


Dr. Seth – Chiropractor

Severtson Spinal Care
513 W 4th St.
Dell Rapids, SD 57022
(605) 428-4778
www.drsevertson.com

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Letter to the Editor: Gay Marriage

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil…” (Isaiah 5:20, ESV)

Recently one of our state’s national senators and one of our former national senators publicly expressed support for “gay marriage”. As a Christian, pastor and lifelong South Dakotan, I’d like to offer a few thoughts on the subject of “gay marriage” and the practice of homosexuality.

1-“Gay marriage” (even if it is accepted by law) is not marriage. Those of us who are Christians (and those of other faiths as well), recognize that God was the one who created marriage. He created marriage as a special union between a man and woman. And He created it to reflect the relationship between Jesus Christ and His church (Ephesians 5). When politicians decide to take it upon themselves to redefine marriage, they aren’t being compassionate and they aren’t being progressive and they aren’t fighting for civil rights; they are putting themselves in the place of God. Totalitarian regimes aren’t the only systems of government that attempt to usurp God’s authority.

2-The Bible roundly condemns the practice of homosexuality as sin. Consider these New Testament passages: 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; 1 Timothy 1:8-11; Jude 7 ; Romans 1:24-28. There’s not a lot of wiggle room for “interpretation”.

3-Everyone is a sinner. And no matter what our particular sin struggles are, we must all find forgiveness and grace and mercy and hope and healing in Jesus Christ. When we turn to Jesus in faith and repentance, He takes some of our sin struggles away immediately. Other sin struggles He lets remain that we might learn how to fight against sin through His appointed means…prayer, Bible, worship, Christian community, etc.

If one of your sin struggles is same-sex attraction, I invite you to look to Jesus and to get into a loving, compassionate, merciful, gospel-proclaiming, Bible-believing, truth-telling church that will walk alongside you in your struggle against sin, as you walk alongside others in theirs.

Finally…For the sake of brevity, I omitted certain things and over-simplified others. If you’d like to dialogue about this subject, contact me at andywright214@gmail.com.

5 Keys to a Successful Event

At first glance, organizing a successful event may seem to be simple enough, but there’s more to it than meets the eye.  A lot of people organize an event, and simply hope that it will turn out to be successful. Some people think that the success of an event is largely dependent on luck and that they sort of just happen. However, by doing so, people most often fail to get the most out of their event. If you want your visitors or participants to remember and cherish your event, you need to understand the 5 important keys to any successful event.

5 Keys to a Successful Event

1)    Detailed Planning and Preparation

Careful and detailed planning for your event is one of the crucial keys to a successful event. Regardless of type and size of an event; whether you are organizing a banquet, fund raising event, company picnics, or holiday parties, a well thought-out plan is required. There are plenty of decisions that need to be made and most of the time; these decisions need to be made early on. The foremost thing that one must keep in mind is to maintain a checklist and note down important tasks that needs to be accomplished within a specified timeline. A written plan should be prepared ahead of time to serve as a guide for everyone who is included in the event preparation. It will serve as a guide, reminder, and at the same time, it can help prevent anything to be overlooked. A good plan should include a detailed structure of the actual event, realistic schedule and timetable for everything that needs to be completed, and specific budget for the planned activities. The more detailed your plan is, the better your event will be in the end.

 2)    Budget Allocation

Proper distribution of funds is an important factor in organizing a successful event. If the funds are not well allocated, there is a tendency that there will be a deficit in one area and an overspending in another. Consider ahead of time how much will be your budget for various expenses such as the venue, menu, decorations, entertainer, and etc. Make sure to list down all your expenses based on you planned activities and allocate a realistic and detailed budget for each of them. Since not everything about the event is in your control, allot a certain amount for unforeseen expenses.

3)     Venue Selection

The location of the event is vital to its success. The venue must be appropriate and has a connection to the type of event that you will organize. Always keep your participants in mind in choosing an appropriate location. The venue should be large enough to hold the number of your participants and spacious enough to for your planned activities. Always visit the site before your book it so that you can estimate if it will work out for your event.

4)    Program Implementation

Sometimes, the only difference between a good event and a great event is the tight execution of the planned program and good management of the events. Disruption in the flow of events can cause disengagement of the participants to the activities and program. This will greatly affect their perception of the event as a whole. Make sure that the responsible people for each part of the event knows how and when to execute their assignments.

 5)    Establishment of a Memorable Moment

The difference between a plain event and a wonderful event lies on that special moment of the event that they will remember even after the occasion. There must be a moment at which the event grabs the audience and makes each person feel that they are part of it. These can be done in various ways; by giving out mementos of the event, by setting a lively mood to the participants through entertainers or by including engaging activities that they can participate in. That special moment can establish a connection to everyone and will give a lasting impression to the participants even after the event has ended.

Tony Biggar,
www.biggarsketches.com

Smartphone Security and Challenges

How many times a day do we actually take our smartphones out to make phone calls compared to the amount of time we spend on other app features? If you are like the majority of those with smartphones, you probably use your “telephone app” a lot less than other features on your phone like social networking, web surfing, contact management, calendaring, online banking, etc.

According to a recent survey conducted by European telecom giant, O2, we spend more time browsing the internet, checking social networks, playing games, and listening to music than we do actually making phone calls.

As we continue to use these apps more frequently, we may be opening ourselves up to security issues with our personal information. Activities such as contact details, call logs, emails, credit card information, corporate data, etc. require our smartphones to carry lots of sensitive data, making this very attractive to malicious users. And since more and more people are deciding to make the switch to smartphones, with the International Data Corporation (IDC) predicting that smartphone shipments will approach 1 billion in the year 2015, malware to retrieve this sensitive information will continue to be on the rise. According to Junipers 2011 malware report, malware targeting the Android platform rose 3,325 percent in the last seven months of 2011 alone.

Most are probably familiar with the names of the malware that can wreak havoc on our laptops and desktops, such as viruses, Trojans and spyware. As our smartphones become increasingly our chosen device for activities once done on our computers, these three main categories (viruses, Trojans and spyware) are becoming popularly used for malware by those trying to hack into data on our smartphones as well.

Senior researcher for the National Center for Protection of the Financial Infrastructure and assistant professor at Dakota State University, Dr. Yong Wang, has been conducting research on smartphone security that includes policy enforcement and Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) security.

“Both of these are essential for employees and enterprises,” says Wang. “We are developing novel approaches and techniques which could be used to protect both employees’ privacy and corporate data.”

Wang is on the forefront of this emerging area of smartphone security that has raised many interests, but with new research comes new challenges in working with the unique characteristics of smart phones.  Smartphones are easy to tamper with physically and with simple setup, it is easy to reprogram the firmware and flash memory in a smartphone, physically clone a memory card or install spyware onto the smartphone. They are also easy targets because of central data management, thus many applications used for social networking or web surfing cache, or store, usernames and passwords on the device. Smartphones are also embedded with sensors inside including GPS, gyroscopic sensors, and accelerometer sensors. While these sensors greatly enrich the functions of the device, they also leave users vulnerable to those wishing to use the information maliciously.

With all of these caches of personal information and malware threatening that information, it is time for smartphone users to start taking their own precautions in protecting their data. Through the research conducted at Dakota State University, Wang has suggested these simple steps that any of us can do in order to better protect ourselves.

  • Increase security awareness. A smartphone is really the same as your desktop or laptop computer. It can be hacked, infected or phished. Be aware when installing software or authorizing software that needs privileges to access smartphone sensors, for example an app that wishes to use the GPS.
  • Apply password and auto-lock. Most smartphones support password and auto-lock functions.
  • Do not store data you cannot afford to lose in smartphones. They are easily lost or stolen.
  • Back up your device regularly.
  • Turn off Bluetooth. Viruses can spread through Bluetooth in your smart phone, so turn it off when not in use.
  • Do not use unsecure Wi-Fi hotspots. Packet sniffer software, which allows the user to capture and interactively browse the traffic running on a computer network, may disclose useful information from smartphone data traffic, leaving personal information vulnerable.
  • Use a smartphone security tool. Secure your phone using a reliable and trusted smartphone security tool.
  • Install anti-theft technology.  Check your smartphone or service provider and find out if they provide anti-theft technology such as erasing data or restoring a smartphone to its default setting remotely.

Wang also points out there are subtle signs that may indicate your device is under attack. These include the cell phone battery being warm even when the phone has not been used, cell phone lights up at unexpected times, including occasions when the phone is not in use, unexpected beeps or clicks during conversations and so on. When these happen, be alert and have a security professional check your device.

As uses of smartphones continue to evolve, the threats will continue to change as well. Thus research done by Wang will become even more critical to everyone. “Our research on smartphone security focuses on sensitive data protection and security policy enforcement,” states Wang. “The innovative techniques and approaches will help secure smartphones and protect our daily lives.”

***Courtesy of Dakota State University***

Behavior Problems

I am blessed to be in contact with a lot of teachers. I recently spoke with a teacher from northern SD and our conversation turned to a topic that I am very interested in, kid’s health. Nothing makes me more passionate than hearing about kids suffering. This specific conversation was about behavior problems. The teacher relayed to me that 1/3 of her second grade class had behavioral problems. I asked how this compared to when she started teaching several years ago. She relayed to me that when she started teaching maybe 1 student of the approximately 25 students in a class would have an issue. Now there are 7 of 25 students with behavioral problems. Quite an increase.

In 2005, Yale researchers did a nationwide study of roughly 4000 students in 40 states and found that behavior problems were causing preschoolers to be expelled at a rate 3 times higher than that of public schools. These are kids just out of diapers being expelled!

I know you are thinking: “What is a chiropractor doing talking about kids mental health problems?” Kid’s health is a passion of mine. I see a lot of kids with health problems and I love taking care of them because they respond beautifully to what we do. Therefore, I offer my professional opinions and clinical observations on how this happens to kids.

  1. Over loaded with sensory stimulation. A common theme as we evaluate the functional nervous system of these kids is that they are stuck “on” all the time. Increased sympathetic tone (facilitation is the $15 phrase.) I am not giving a diagnosis here. I am giving a perspective. Basically, their nervous system is stuck on (or being facilitated) all the time. Constant stress, TV, games, music, no movement, toxic diet. Their nervous system is constantly on high.
  2. Toxic. Kids these days are consuming “junk” at astronomical rates. A few common examples include: Juice, pop, and energy drinks that are full of sugar to get them going, medications to slow them down, chemicals in food and vaccines. Kids are full of sensory stimulation. Add these chemical stimulations to them and we have even more of a problem.
  3. Emotional needs. I’m a parent and I know children spell “love” as T.I.M.E. Our pursuit of wealth, success, immortality, etc is all too often a way of hiding from our parental role.  Because of these desires, we have an over-stimulated kid with no support. Parents, dads specifically, it is time to step up in your child’s life and make your presence known. I am involved with a men’s group that is listening to Dr. Robert Lewis speak on raising men. He says that all kids need to hear 3 things. “I love you. I am proud of you. You are good at ________.” Dads step up and be the man in their life.
  4. Exacerbation. Be careful how we treat our children. They are mirrors and will reflect back to society the character we build into them now. Degrading talk, snide remarks, hollering and egging them on are all lazy strategies. We need to be on guard and fight against these tendencies.
  5. Spine. This is what I take care of and it is a fact that proper spinal movement is needed for proper brain function. If their spine is not moving properly, anyone will have internal physiologic stress. It’s not painful, so our children cannot explain it. These stresses can include anything from anxiety to “brain fog” and just lack of concentration (among many other problems). Again, this lack of proper spine balance and movement shows up in their behavior. Kids need to move. They need a balanced spine to do so properly. Get them out and moving through running, playing, climbing, swimming, biking, wrestling, and walking. Do these as a family and you will all benefit on multiple levels. There are several professionals in town that can evaluate your child’s spine and provide them with restoration, healing or wellness depending on your child’s needs.

These five areas all add up and create children that are unable to cope with stress, unable to adapt to increasing levels of stress in a school setting or in relationships or on a physical level. Address this NOW while you can. If you have questions for the doctor, would like help or want to meet for a complimentary consultation, contact Severtson Spinal Care at (605) 428-4778.  You can also visit us at www.drsevertson.com.

Wear and Tear

Dr. Seth Severtson-chiropractor

Wear and Tear.

My patients have heard me say it over and over again: “anything you don’t maintain will breakdown over time.” That’s true of your car, your finances, your yard, your relationships, your pets… and it is true of your health. If you do not maintain it, it will breakdown over time.

One of the terms that is thrown around a lot is “arthritis.” It’s a standard medical term to imply your joints are “breaking down” from wear and tear.  Unfortunately it is usually written off as a natural process of age and while that is true to an extent, age does play a factor I take an additional view. Clinically I see the other, probably more significant factor, is joint alignment and balance. The joints of your body were designed to bear your weight evenly. If you have an imbalance in, for example, your spine, it can cause uneven wear and breakdown of other joints in your body. I have seen spine imbalances cause shoulder problems and even all the way down into your knee, ankle and foot. Not to mention the obvious places like your neck, midback, lowback and hips. Just because the pain or problem may be in one area of your body it could have a less obvious cause coming from an imbalanced spine. And just because you have pain or imbalance it may not mean it is permanent. What can you do?

Caution:

  1. Talk to your medical doctor. Pain medication may be the route you choose to go but know there may be alternatives. Medicine does nothing to treat the cause of the problem. It just covers it up. So even if you are feeling good don’t overdo it. The cause of the problem is still there.
  2. Exercise? I am all for exercise but if you have an unbalanced spine and you decide you are going to exercise your way out of it…that may lead to accelerated breakdown and even worse muscle imbalances Think about it like this. If you had an unbalanced tire on your car, would you drive to Rapid City as fast as you can to get that sucker to straighten out? No. Similar principles apply to your body. Exercise is of definite benefit to your body, but make sure it isn’t causing unseen problems.

Options:

  1. First get in balance. Dell Rapids is blessed to have a few chiropractors and a physical therapy department that should be able to evaluate you and determine what needs to be done for restoration, healing or wellness depending on what your body needs.
  2. After that, Dell Rapids is blessed to have a couple gyms, a pool, a bike trail and a supportive active community where you can get out and move your body to stave off breakdown. We also have local classes (yoga, zumba etc.) and trainers that can help you engage in healthy activities.
  3. Finally watch what you eat. We will cover this more later but what you eat can and WILL cause inflammation in your body. As Michael Pollan says “Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.”

Questions? Contact Dr. Severtson at (605) 428-4778

Miracles

Nothing is more exciting in healthcare than miracles stories. I get spoiled because I get to hear them on a daily basis. With the permission of patients I have compiled their stories.

Bedwetting and celiac sprue
I had met them a week or so before when the mom was sharing her daughters health struggles. She had been to numerous chiropractors and medics. I explained how we were different and what we did. She said she would give me a call sometime. Unfortunately not everyone believes me when I tell them what I do and the results we see so I really didn’t think I would see her again. But I did. About a week later she brought her daughter in. We were sitting in the consultation room going over her health history I couldn’t help but notice the “soft clues” doctors are supposed to be paying attention to. I would ask questions and mom would answer. But it was the way mom would answer. She would look over at the little girl when she told me how these issues were affecting her life. She would relay where they had been and what had been done and what labels were attached to the little girl. The little girl stared at the floor most of the time having been through this sort of setting time and time before. She had been to numerous doctors with nothing more than symptom management. On too many medications with too many labels attached to her it had taken its toll on her self esteem.  The concern had started to affect her ability to stay over with friends, affected her growth and affected the size of clothes she wore. 3T at age 10. This had been going on “forever” and now the bedwetting had caused her to wear the equivalent of diapers at night. It was those subtle phrases, comments and expressions that told “the rest of the story.” As a physician you hear things like that and a tuning fork goes off in your heart. It strikes a chord, if you will. You know what simply seems to be physiologic reactions found in a text book are beginning to affect the way this child is experiencing life. It is that life experience that I am focused on. Not the symptoms. The expression of life is why I do what I do. It is why I became a chiropractor.

As we finished visiting about the past I told them how we deal with the present. In the office I don’t treat symptoms, which can be misleading. I look for imbalances. I look for the cause of the problem. I could not guarantee anything, however, if there was a problem in her spine linked to the problems she was having then she would likely have good results in the future. We did our analysis, took very specific upper cervical (the top of the neck) x-rays. We determined that her misalignment was likely affecting sleep patterns and nervous system tone. This was not allowing her to wake up at the urge to use the bathroom. It was just a theory based on the analysis. We would soon find out.

We made a correction to her Atlas vertebrae, took specific post films and determined that the misalignment had gotten better. However the misalignment appeared unstable and some follow up care and another picture would be needed to help her stabilize. The adjustment is underwhelming to say the least. No noise, no fast movements; simply gentle, specific, controlled pressure behind the ear. When they left I explained some home care and told them to check back in a few days.

I will never forget the next visit.

The smile she gave me when mom proudly announced she was dry for the first time was worth the price of admission. Follow up a year later the little girl is still doing good  staying dry and and getting better. Oh and she is able to gain weight and come off of her medications.

If you have questions for the doctor or would like help or a consultation contact Severtson Spinal Care at (605) 428-4778 or visit us at www.drsevertson.com