Do You Suffer From Vertigo? We Can Help!

What is Vertigo?
Vertigo is a subtype of dizziness in which a person inappropriately experiences the perception of motion (usually a spinning motion) due to dysfunction of the sensor system.

What Causes Vertigo?
The position of your head and body in space is sensed by the inner ear nerves and structures. Vertigo is often caused by problems with these nerves and structures.

Balance Disorder
Difficulties standing or walking
Sensation of disorientation or motion
Abnormal eye movement

3 Types of Vertigo
Objective-describes when a person has the sensation that objects in the environment are moving
Subjective-is when a person feels as if he or she is moving
Pseudo Vertigo- an intensive sensation of rotation inside the person’s head.

Vertigo May Be Effected By:
Head Injury
Disorders of the inner ear
Age-related breakdown of the vestibular system

Chiropractic Care
David D. Kelly, BSc Chiro, BSc and Kelly Holt, BSc (Chiro), PGDipHSc did a case study on Resolution of Vertigo, Migraines and Neck Pain in a 12 Year Old Boy Receiving Chiropractic Care and published their findings in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health.
Clinical Features:  A twelve year old boy with a long history of routine, recurrent dizziness, chronic neck pain and migraines presented for chiropractic care. These symptoms resulted in him being absent from school more than half of the time for the previous seven years.
Interventions and Outcomes:
The patient received chiropractic adjustments for the reduction of vertebral subluxations over a twelve month period. The initial frequency of care was three chiropractic visits per week for four weeks. Visit frequency was then gradually reduced over the next 12 months to one visit per month. Besides the chiropractic adjustments the patient was also advised to perform cervical stretches (lateral flexion, rotation and flexion/extension) twice daily. After the first week of chiropractic care the patient reported a cessation of his headaches and neck ache. His vertigo attacks decreased in frequency and became less severe, then ceased altogether. His attendance improved dramatically at school and dropped from 223 half days absent the previous year to 56 half days absent for the 12 months after beginning chiropractic care.
This case report describes a child who reported a cessation in symptoms of vertigo, neck pain and headaches after beginning chiropractic care. There are a growing number of case reports that suggest chiropractic care may be beneficial for patients suffering from vertigo. Further study is required to investigate the role chiropractors may play in caring for people with vertigo.


Are You Fatigued All the Time? You May Have CFS

What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)?
Chronic fatigue syndrome is a complicated disorder. It’s defined as severe, disabling fatigue without demonstrable muscle weakness. The fatigue may worsen with physical or mental activity, but doesn’t improve with rest alone.

What Causes Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
The cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is unknown, although there are many theories, ranging from viral infections to psychological stress. Some experts believe chronic fatigue syndrome might be triggered by a combination of factors. There’s no single test to confirm a diagnosis of CFS.


  • Fatigue
  • Loss of memory or concentration
  • Sore throat
  • Enlarged lymph nodes in your neck or armpits
  • Unexplained muscle pain
  • Pain that moves from one joint to another without swelling or redness
  • Headache of a new type, pattern or severity
  • Unrefreshed sleep
  • Extreme exhaustion lasting more than 24 hours after physical or mental exercise

Chiropractic Care
H. Charles Woodfield, BS Pharmacy, D.C. and Marshall Dickholtz, Sr., D.C., FICA did a case study on the Quality of Life Improvement in Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Following Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care and published their findings in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research. 

Introduction: Treatment focuses on alleviation of symptoms and improving a patient’s quality of life. The primary objective was to observe and record changes in health related quality of life, before and after an atlas correction.
Methods: Nineteen subjects diagnosed as having Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) according to the 1994 Center of Disease Control (CDC) diagnostic criteria were studied. Patients who were fatigued six or more months and who met four or more diagnostic criteria were evaluated for study inclusion. Data and study administration were conducted using a practice based research protocol. Patients were monitored for a period of six months to insure atlas alignment was maintained and then retested with the outcomes measures.
Results: End of the study by revealed a significant increase in the quality of life.
Conclusion: This chiropractic procedure may contribute to an improved quality of life in some subjects with CFS as demonstrated in this study. The study was limited by the lack of a control group and that care was provided by only one practitioner.

What Exactly is Autism?

What is Autism?
Autism is a general terms for a complex disorders of brain development. This disorder is characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors.

What Causes Autism?
Scientists have identified a number of rare gene changes, or mutations, associated with autism. A small number of these are sufficient to cause autism by themselves. Most cases of autism appear to be caused by a combination of autism risk genes and environmental factors influencing early brain development. They include advanced parental age at time of conception (both mom and dad), maternal illness during pregnancy and certain difficulties during birth, particularly those involving periods of oxygen deprivation to the baby’s brain.

Symptoms start at the age of one and always by the age of three:
-Lack of attachment
-Inability to cuddle or to form reciprocal relationships
-Avoidance of eye gaze
-Resistance to change and intense attachment to familiar objects
-Speech and language problems
-Uneven intellectual performance

Chiropractic Care
Tai A. Scelfo D.C. and Patricia L. Chelenyak D.C. did a case study on Resolution of Autistic Symptoms in a Child Undergoing Chiropractic Care to Correct Vertebral Subluxations and published their findings in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic.

Clinical Features: A 9-year-old boy with chronic ear infections, difficulty with social interactions, and impairment of communication presented for chiropractic care. The child was first diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), and later, diagnosed with Autism.
Interventions: Diversified and toggle-recoil techniques were utilized in this case study. A nutritionist also administered digestive enzymes as part of care. Signs of improved social skills were apparent after the fourth visit, along with language development acknowledged on the seventh visit. The parent also reduced use of medication.
Conclusions: Through the correction of vertebral subluxation, significant improvements were noted by parent and doctor. Further studies need to be conducted to demonstrate that the correction of subluxation correlates with increased functioning of the autistic child.


We Can Help with Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

What is Multiple Sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is when there is interference in the communication between your brain, spinal cord, and other areas of your body. The immune system destroys the protective layer that covers the nervous. This condition may result in deterioration of the nerves themselves, a process that’s not reversible.

What causes Multiple Sclerosis?
There is no known cause of Multiple sclerosis. Doctors believe that it is a combination of genetics, infection, environmental influences and the immune system that lead to the disease.


  • Fatigue
  • Numbness
  • Walking (Gait) & Balance Problems
  • Coordination Problems
  • Bladder & Bowel Dysfunction
  • Vision Problems
  • Sexual Dysfunction
  • Muscle Pain
  • Cognitive Dysfunction
  • Emotional Changes
  • Depression
  • Spasticity
  • Dizziness & Vertigo

Chiropractic Care
Justin Brown DC, Jonathon Chung DC and Belinda McCullen DC published their findings of  Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care of a Female Patient with Multiple Sclerosis in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research.
Clinical Features: A female patient with Multiple Sclerosis presented to the office with neck pain, numbness, ringing in the ears, fatigue, balance problems, and dizziness.  This was the patient’s second experience with chiropractic.  An atlas subluxation was detected from leg length evaluation, postural analysis, and radiographic measurements. She was adjusted using an upper cervical technique.
Intervention and Outcomes: The patient received an upper cervical adjustment. At the patient’s 30th visit she reported having a 90% improvement in her neck pain, 90% improvement in her numbness, 70% improvement in her fatigue, and a 90% improvement in her balance since her initial visit.
Conclusion: The positive response observed in the case suggests that atlas subluxation may have a positive effect on the symptoms of patients with Multiple Sclerosis.  However, follow up to this case is needed due to the nature of exacerbations and remissions in MS.  The need for further investigation of the connection between atlas vertebra subluxations and Multiple Sclerosis is indicated.


Backpack Drive August 18th-29th

Students in our neighborhood and around the world need our help getting school supplies. Health First Chiropractic is doing our part and giving back. We have teamed up with Liberty Elementary School and  Somos Ohana Nicaragua Foundation. New patients will SAVE over $200, and will receive a consultation, exam and first day x-rays. Please call the office near you to get the full details.

Skagit County- 360.855.1021
Snohomish County- 360.658.1987
King County- 206.327.9328
Pierce County- 253.256.4818

What is Meniere’s Disease?

What is Meniere’s Disease?
Meniere’s disease is a disorder in the inner ear that cause a whole host of problems. The most common symptom is vertigo.

What factors can affect Meniere’s Disease?
It is more common for people in their 40s and 50s to develop this disease, but it can occur in anyone, including children.

-Temporary hearing loss
-Ringing in the ear
-Pressure in the ear

A little more about Vertigo
Vertigo is a possible sign of other disorders, see your doctor immediately if vertigo is accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Double vision or loss of vision
  • Speech impairment
  • Leg or arm weakness
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Falling or difficulty walking
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Chest pain

Chiropractic CareMark A. Jones DC and Bryan J. Salminen DC published their findings about Meniere’s Disease Symptomatology Resolution with Specific Upper Cervical Care in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research.

Clinical Features: A 52 year old male presented with a previous diagnosis of Meniere’s disease and associated symptoms of tinnitus, sensations of fullness in the left ear, vertigo, tension headaches, right mid-back and scapular pain along with other musculoskeletal complaints.

Intervention and Outcomes: The patient received specific upper cervical chiropractic care after determining there was a misalignment. After the first adjustment, the patient noted a minor reduction in tinnitus.  After 4 adjustments and 5 weeks of care the subjective demonstrated an improvement of about 60% on tinnitus, vertigo, auricular pressure, migraine tension headaches and a significant reduction of musculoskeletal complaints.

Conclusion: The positive response observed in this case suggests that tinnitus, vertigo, auricular pressure, migraine tension headaches and Meniere’s may be linked to atlas subluxation.  The need for further investigation is indicated.


Do You Struggle with Depression?

What is Depression?
Depressive disorders are characterized by sadness severe enough or persistent enough to interfere with function and sometimes by decreased interest or pleasure in activities. Exact cause is unknown but probably involves heredity, changes in neurotransmitter levels, altered neuroendocrine function, and psychosocial factors. Diagnosis is based on history.

What Causes Depression?
Depressive disorders occur at any age but typically develop during the mid-teens, 20s, or 30s. In primary care settings, as many as 30% of patients report depressive symptoms, but less than 10% have major depression. Women experience depression about twice as often as men.

-Feelings of sadness or unhappiness
-Irritability or frustration, even over small matters
-Loss of interest or pleasure in normal activities
-Reduced sex drive
-Insomnia or excessive sleeping, fatigue and loss of energy
-Changes in appetite
-Slowed thinking, speaking or body movements
-Indecisiveness, easily distracted and decreased concentration

Chiropractic Care
Lauren Roth PsyD, Diane Zelman PhD, Lauren Clum DC and Justin Roth DC did a case study on Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care as a Complementary Strategy for Depression and published their findings in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research.
Clinical Features: This case study of 6 adults with mild to moderate depression symptoms based on pre-treatment and presence of upper cervical subluxation. Participants received upper cervical specific chiropractic care. Participants completed the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised pre- and post-treatment, and completed depression measures weekly throughout treatment. A numeric chiropractic care outcome measure tracked stability and effectiveness of weekly chiropractic visits. A post-treatment interview conducted by a psychology researcher evaluated subjective effectiveness and effects.
Intervention and Outcome: Five of six patients completed all 12 recommended chiropractic visits. Four of five study completers expressed satisfaction with the outcome and that they would recommend similar care to others with depression. Participants also reported decrease in muscle tension and pain, increase in mental clarity and physical energy.
Conclusion: The results provide tentative support for the effectiveness of upper cervical chiropractic care for depression symptoms. Follow-up research should use randomized controlled blind study.



Are Seizures Contagious?

What are Seizures?
Seizures accrue when there is a malfunction in the electrical system in the brain. The brain keeps firing electrical energy which can cause unconsciousness and contractions of the muscles.

What causes Seizures?
Seven out of ten people who have seizures, no cause can be found. Among the rest, the cause may be any one of a number of things that can make a difference in the way the brain works, including head injuries or lack of oxygen during birth, brain tumors, genetic conditions, lead poisoning, and infections.


  • Loss of awareness
  • Confused, feeling spacey
  • Periods of forgetfulness or memory lapses
  • Distracted, daydreaming
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Unable to hear
  • Sounds may be strange or different
  • Unusual smells
  • Unusual tastes

Categories of Seizures

  1. Generalized
  2. Partial
  3. Gelastic
  4. Dacrystic
  5. Non-Epileptic
  6. Status Epilepticus

3rd Annual Picnic Patient Appreciation Picnic

Come joint the fun!

We will provide hotdogs, hamburgers, beverages, games, prizes and lots of fun, so bring the whole family! Sign up in the office to bring a side dish or dessert and remember to fill out your tickets when you are in the office. :)

Pierce County- Saturday, August 23rd, 12:00-2:00pm
DeCoursey Park- 2100 7th Ave. SW Puyallup

Snohomish County- Saturday, September 6th, 1:00-3:00pm
Jennings Memorial Park- 6915 Armar Rd., Marysville



Have you heard about the affects of Ankylosing Spondylitis?

What is Ankylosing Spondylitis?
Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) is a form of arthritis that primarily affects the spine that can affect other joints.

What Does it Mean?
Ankylosis- means “fusion”, which may be fibrous, or bony
Spondylitis- means “inflammation of the spine”

What factors can affect Ankylosing Spondylitis?
The exact cause of Ankylosing Spondylitis is unknown, we do know that genetics play a key role in AS.

Pain and stiffness:

  • shoulders
  • hips
  • ribs
  • heels
  • small joints of the hands and feet.

Chiropractic Care

 Upper Cervical Chiropractic Management of an Adult with Ankylosing Spondylitis

 Cailen E. Wells DC & John Williams DC, Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research

Clinical Features: A 52 year old male presented with postural stiffness in multiple joints, mid-back pain, neck pain, bilateral shoulder pain, bilateral leg and hip pain. Past history included three motor vehicle accidents prior to the diagnosis of Ankylosing Spondylitis.  Other health concerns included high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, and ulcerative colitis.
Intervention and Outcomes: Subluxations were confirmed with upper cervical radiographs, x-rays, and a Grostic leg check analysis.  Blair and Knee Chest techniques were utilized over a 4 month period with improvements in pain, range of motion and blood pressure.
Conclusion: This case report exhibits the need for further study of both the Knee Chest and Blair corrections of an upper cervical vertebral subluxation in a patient with AS.





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