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?


  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.


  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

Share and Like this story: