The Lazy Classification VS Irreversible Degenerative Osteoarthritis – A Chiropractor's Thoughts on Obesity

Questions for a Chiropractor

To compose an article of relevant content rather then a bunch of contrived obesity facts, I approached one of my clients who is scheduled for gastric sleeve surgery in August and picked her brain for a topic or question she would want answered as a person with weight concerns. I was shocked and unready at the speed at which she answered me with not just one but multiple questions laced with obvious emotional pain that accompanied the reliving of past events and hurt that ultimately brought her to my office.

“ Do you think it is smarter or would I have been better off making the decision to have this procedure done years ago? Because I have honestly suffered for years. It breaks my heart to see my niece who weighs close to 200kg, lost and not knowing what to do”

“ People think that because you are overweight that you are lazy and have never tried or should try harder to stop being fat. I don’t care anymore what people think, I’m older, I have raised 4 children, worked my entire life and I am doing this for me. But I worry for my niece for she feels that a gastric procedure is not an option because she will be classed as lazy because she is young and that an operation would only prove she was lazy”.

“Would I have less back pain and be healthier if I had done this years ago?”

In my professional opinion if you have tried every avenue and you have the desire to live then take the steps to change to your life, take action before permanent spinal damage sets in. By permanent damage I mean irreversible degenerative osteoarthritis. If a gastric procedure is your only hope but you are worried about what “they “ will think- then you don’ t need to be around them. Take that road and ensure you commit to constant nutritional, behavioral, habitual and environmental change to allow yourself to become the person you want to be.

Why? Because I see on a daily basis what happens to joints when they are constantly loaded. All human joints, regardless of race or gender respond the same way when they are excessively loaded over time. They are all subjected to decay and osteoarthritis. This is a fact and through x-rays it is actually possible to identify how long the degenerative process has been developing and when it should have first been identified to stop all further progression.

Osteoarthritis is a joint disease that mostly affects cartilage. Cartilage is the slippery looking tissue that covers the ends of your bones. Healthy cartilage allows bones to slide and glide in the joints. It also helps absorb shock of movement. In osteoarthritis, the top layer of cartilage breaks down and wears away. This allows bones under the cartilage to rub together. The rubbing causes pain, swelling, and loss of motion of the joint. Over time, the joint may lose its normal shape. Also, bone spurs may grow on the edges of the joint. Bits of bone or cartilage can break off and float inside the joint space, which causes more pain and damage.

So take these action steps.

1) If you suffer back or joint pains from seemingly innocuous activities such getting out of bed, walking or sitting – chances are you have osteoarthritis.

2) Get assessed. Get an x-ray and find out just how your back shapes up. Most GP’s now bulk bill, find one which can organizes a bulk billed full spinal x-ray and discover the health and sate of your spinal column.

3) With all the information in front of you – speak to your GP, specialist or chiropractor about what you should do next.

4) Always start conservative, but if you require a gastric procedural advice don’t wait make an appointment and be advised.

In the case of my client if she had followed these 4 steps 15 years ago when she first considered a gastric procedure and was talked out of it:

• She would not have the irreversible Grade 4 spinal osteoarthritis she lives with today. • Her spine would not be compressed with abnormally large postural curves, • She may suffer no pain at all and her quality of life would be exponentially better.

Her niece is following these action steps. She is excited about having real direction and starting a new chapter in her life.