Stop the Cycle of Pain & Depression

Pain and depression often feed on each other in a vicious cycle. Likewise, treating one will often help the other and maybe even stop the cycle of pain and depression.

If you have ever experienced back pain you know just how disruptive it can be on your life. The impact of not being able to participate in our day-to-day activities can cause worry, fatigue, a decrease in self-esteem, sleep disturbances, and financial worry due to an inability to work.

Inevitably dealing with the pain itself as well as the mental ramifications can cause acute depressive symptoms which in turn will magnify the back pain, making the whole experience all-consuming.

Although it sounds like a bleak predicament, it doesn’t have to be. The best way to break the cycle of pain and depression is to take control of your symptoms and seek a treatment that is best suited to you.


back pain, low back pain, neck pain, headache, chronic pain, joint pain, toronto chiropractor
Pain and depression often go hand in hand.

How a chiropractor can help?

Chiropractors take a holistic approach when developing individualized chiropractic care plans. They look at the whole body to ensure that you are receiving the most effective pain management treatment for you.

Spinal manipulation is just one of the chiropractic treatment methods employed in easing the pain caused by both acute and chronic back pain, but it is not the only one. A good chiropractor will thoroughly assess your needs and refer you to other professionals if they feel that is what is best for you as the patient. In order to come up with the most effective treatment they will take the time to get to know you and understand the source of your pain.


What can you expect from your first visit?

The first step in determining which chiropractic techniques will work best for you, is understanding your medical background and current health status. You will be asked to fill out a form prior to meeting with your chiropractor for the first time.

The second step is a thorough chiropractic exam which may include respiration, blood pressure, and reflex testing. Depending on your symptoms, the chiropractor may also want to asses your range of motion or complete a posture analysis.

All of the information gathered in these initial two steps will help the chiropractor understand your specific needs and develop a chiropractic care plan that will have you stepping back into your daily life without the pain.


back pain, neck pain, low back pain, headaches, chronic pain, joint pain, toronto chiropractor
Chiropractors are a good resource when dealing with pain.

What is a chiropractic treatment plan?

For each patient the plan will be tailored to suit their diagnosis and individual needs. Chiropractors aim to have you back on your feet and enjoying life as soon as possible. For acute low back pain the treatment plan often ranges from six to twelve sessions over the course of a two to four week period. The initial sessions are often thirty minutes long with the follow-ups being around ten to fifteen minutes.

Your treatment plan will be unique to you and can involve manual spinal manipulations, spinal traction, soft tissue manual therapies, muscle stimulation, ultrasound, and therapeutic stretching. Your chiropractor may also refer you to other professionals for diet and nutritional counselling or life counselling.

There are many factors that come into play when we are experiencing debilitating pain. Chiropractors take the full picture into account and recognize the importance of a well rounded care plan that addresses the individual needs of each patient.

Living with pain is something that greatly reduces your quality of life by stealing away those moments when you experience joy in your accomplishments and the things you love to do. Seeking treatment and getting your pain management under control is one of the best things you can do for your mental health. Chiropractors can help!

Shirtless man with lower back pain or backache

Debunking Three Common Myths about Chiropractic Treatment

Have you ever heard the term “bone crusher?”

No, I’m not talking about the latest Marvel superhero, extreme workout challenge, or fear-inducing rollercoaster.

All good guesses though!

If this term does sound vaguely familiar in your search for understanding the benefits of a chiropractic treatment, it is because it is the one some people associate with chiropractors. It is this type of misleading language that will often send those that would benefit most from a chiropractic adjustment plan running for the door.

So let’s look at breaking down three common myths surrounding chiropractic care:


I don’t know about you, but an alternative pain management therapy that is referred to as “bone crushing” sounds anything but therapeutic to me! No wonder people feel nervous about signing on for a treatment plan that will make the pain worse before it gets better.

The myth that chiropractic treatments will be painful is 100% wrong. If anything, a patient may feel a bit of pressure or some discomfort, but generally hands-on spinal manipulation therapy has not been known to cause pain. What chiropractic patients will find is that aligning the musculoskeletal structure allows the body to heal, ultimately ridding the patient of the pain that they were seeking relief from.

Taking the time to not only learn about health options but to also get assessed for them is a good choice.


This one is also false!

A patient who is experiencing acute pain will be assessed and given a chiropractic treatment plan. Each plan depends on the specific needs of their condition. Often times acute issues will require a couple of visits to establish lasting relief from the pain, and then there is no need to return.

Some patients however, will opt for ongoing treatment because they recognize the benefits of aligned bones on both their physical and mental wellbeing. Many report feeling a lift in their overall vitality and quality of life.

Back Pain is commonly treated by chiropractors in toronto, as are many other aches and pains.
There are many causes of back pain…knowing yours can lead to better treatment.


Chiropractors work primarily to relieve pain in the muscles, joints and connective tissues like ligaments and cartilage. Most patients seek relief for back related conditions like a herniated disk or muscle strain, but chiropractors can also help with sports injuries and headaches.

A treatment example for a sprained ankle would be to align the bones in the foot to correct the issue causing the tissue damage, using athletic tape to keep the alignment in place. That procedure can be followed by either ultrasound, laser or electrotherapy to reduce the swelling. This type of treatment plan can often greatly reduce the healing time.

Headache sufferers know just how disruptive the pain they experience can be to their day-to-day lives. Chronic headaches can affect their ability to function at work, interact with family and friends, and experience joy. Chiropractors employ a variety of methods to manage headaches, including manual therapy, soft tissue therapy, electrical stimulation, ultrasound, and acupuncture. Each plan is unique to the individual patient.

As you can see there is no bone crushing involved here. Chiropractors provide an alternative pain management course of treatment that puts bones back in their happy place!

Back pain getting IN and OUT of a car

This video will help for those who feel back pain when getting in and out of the car.

( Transcript of video originally posted at: )

Hey everyone, it’s Dr. Dave! Hopefully you’re all out there creating those great experiences in your lives.

I keep mentioning creating those great experiences in your life. Sometimes to get to where you’re going to create those great experiences you must drive. Maybe you take a taxi or an Uber, but you must get there. One of the interesting things is this: Did you know that there’s a right and a wrong way to get in and out of the car?

I know it seems kind of silly but if you’re like me and you’re a hurry, you probably do it this way. You just get in, you put one foot in, you kind of twist, you sit, and you lift the other leg in, right? You do it one leg at a time. Interestingly, if you’ve ever had back pain, you’ve probably found that hard to do. That’s because it is a hard thing to do!

There’s a lot of movement involved and that can strain different parts of your body. If you’re healthy maybe it’s not that big a deal.  If we want to avoid problems or especially if you’re noticing some problems, we don’t want to aggravate things or set ourselves up to fail.

<H1> Try This…

A good thing to do when you’re getting in is to open the door and then sit first with both legs out the door. Then you can turn both legs in at the same time. This is much less stressful for your lower back, in those joints down there.

I know it seems a little bit silly, but sometimes when it comes to our health what may be the easiest way to do something, or the fastest, is not always the best for us. Sometimes the best way for us slows us down a bit or might even make us feel a bit silly, but the price is less to your health if you do it the right way. You can preserve your health this way.

Remember, when you’re going out to create those great experiences and you’re getting in and out of the car, make sure bum first, feet second and you’re good to go.


P.S. get out of the car in the opposite fashion…turn both feet out, bum on the seat, then stand on both feet. 😊 See the video by clicking here.

Back Pain

3 Common Yet Overlooked Causes of Back Pain

Are you Struggling with Persistent Aches? There are 3 Lifestyle Factors That Can Trigger Back Pain


Struggling with back pain and aches? Have a hard time walking around and staying active? If so, you’re not alone. In fact, more than one-third of the U.S. population experiences lower back pain at any given time. Most times, this condition is due to lifestyle factors, such as poor posture, incorrect lifting form, or prolonged sitting.


Treatment options depend on the root cause of your problem. For example, someone who experiences back pain following a sports injury will require a treatment than those suffering from arthritis-related pain. That’s why it’s important to know what triggers your symptoms in the first place.


Interested to find out more? Let’s take a look at some of the most common yet overlooked causes of back pain:




This may come up as a surprise, but stress is often the culprit behind back pain and aches. It’s also a major contributor to IBS, heart disease, high blood pressure, eczema, psoriasis, and other psychosomatic disorders.


If you’ve been stressed out lately, your back may hurt more than usual. You may also experience fatigue, poor sleep, neck pain, and diffuse muscle aches. Those who work out regularly may feel weaker and need more time to recover from exercise.


Even though you cannot completely eliminate stress, there are ways to keep it under control. Sure, this won’t necessarily take your pain away, but it may reduce its intensity.


Try to get more rest, start practicing Pilates or yoga, and do breathing exercises. Avoid people or situations that trigger stress. If your pain persists, consult a chiropractor or a physiotherapist.


Shirtless man with lower back pain or backache


Lack of Sleep


Sleep deprivation and back pain go hand in hand. Poor sleep triggers pain, and vice-versa. In a study conducted on subjects with chronic neck and back pain, nearly 20 percent of the patients reported sleeping less than four hours per night. Researchers have also identified a strong link between pain intensity and the grade of sleep deprivation.


When you sleep, your body produces important hormones, such as testosterone and HGH, and repairs damaged tissues. Even the slightest sleep deprivation can interfere with these processes and increase your sensitivity to pain. Furthermore, it raises the stress hormone cortisol levels, which may reduce the body’s pain tolerance and trigger inflammation.


Your Profession


Believe it or not, your job could be making you sick. Back pain is more common in people with certain professions, such as drivers, nurses, factory workers, construction workers, office workers, carpenters, and plumbers. Pro athletes and dancers are at risk too.


These professions involve prolonged sitting or standing as well as sudden movements that can trigger back pain and make it worse. For this reason, they’re commonly referred to as “back-breaking” jobs.


Of course, this doesn’t mean you should quit your job or switch careers. What you can do is to pay more attention to your posture and lifting form. If you spend hours sitting at a desk or driving, take regular breaks. Go out for a walk, squeeze more exercise into your schedule, and stay active throughout the day.


These are just a few of the many causes of back pain. Our list could also include strength imbalances, reduced range of motion, underlying cardiovascular problems, urinary tract infections, and more. If you’re obese or overweight, carrying around those extra pounds can put stress on your spine an joints, causing pain.


No matter the cause of your problem, consult a medical professional before taking any drugs. A qualified healthcare provider can assess your condition and recommend the best course of action based on your needs.

Chiropractic, Toronto Chiropractor

Opioids vs Health Care Options

Hey everyone, it’s a Dr. Dave! What kind of experiences are you up to today? I hope you are having fun and enjoying life.

I also hope you’re having a good time making those memories and, having said that statement, it’s great when we can. There are, unfortunately, a lot of people who can’t. One of the biggest things that detracts from our ability to have these great experiences every day is pain. Pain affects everybody from moms and dads, to youths and seniors, and in all kinds of occupations. Sometimes, all of these people turn to opioids for relief.

People end up having pain problems because physically, chemically and emotionally, life throws us some challenges. Not just any one challenge but usually multiple challenges over time. Sometimes we end up with a macro problem, it happens in a big instant like an accident. Or it’s a micro problem that builds up over time repeatedly and we end up falling behind on our health.

Nobody likes to be in pain and I don’t blame them, I don’t like to be in pain myself. We quite often turn to solutions that help get us out of pain quickly. When we seek out that pain relief, we turn to medications. Whether over-the-counter or prescription, there’s a place and a need for these medications. Opioids are very powerful and useful at helping us work through some pain.

The challenge with opioids is that they quite often do not deal with the cause or source of our health problem. Our body is very good at eliminating a foreign substance like opioids from our body. It does it faster and faster with more exposure. Therefore, quite often a need for those medications increases to help deal with the same amount of pain. The challenge with that is sometimes there are some nasty side effects. In fact, every year in the United States alone, thirty thousand people die from side effects from opioids.

Opioids Used For Pain Problems Can Lead to Addiction

Three out of five people who end up illegally abusing opioids come from average people, day-to-day people, living their lives, who end up with a pain problem and who have used prescriptions to help. Unfortunately, many never resolve the problem and end up using them for the long term. Death is just one of the worst side effects. There are so many others that cause a downward spiral in a person’s health.

This is nothing new and this is something that’s very well documented. Opioids have been increasingly in the news and in the research. The tragedy really is that opioids use should be a last resort or a short-term strategy. There should be a focus on more conservative options to help that person with their health problem. Especially their pain problem so that it doesn’t become a chronic health problem with an increased risk to their health over the years.

( Transcript to video originally posted here. )

Chiropractic care, being the third largest healthcare profession in the world, the largest drug free, surgery free, healthcare profession in the world, not only focuses on helping people get relief. By improving and recovering function, people can maintain that relief. If they need any medications, they’re going to be a last resort or a short-term option. And chiropractic is not the only choice; massage therapy, naturopathy, traditional Chinese medicine… there are a lot of different approaches that can help people with their pain so that they don’t have to resort to these dangerous options like opioids.

Those medication options are very effective and sometimes quite necessary. We don’t want to become dependent on them. We don’t want to be fooled into thinking we are dealing with the cause or source of the problem. If you’re one of these people who are unfortunate enough to have had some buildup in your life or now you’re dealing with some pain state or if you know someone who’s dealing with pain, whether it’s new or long-term, you want to encourage them to seek out some of these conservative options – like chiropractic care – so that they don’t end up on a path that’s going to be detrimental to their health in the long term.

As I mention quite often in my videos and podcasts, about creating good experiences in life, even when someone takes that medication, their experience in life just isn’t the same. That’s because their body is not able to experience the world the same way when it’s altered through a drug. If we want to have great experiences, we want to seek out these conservative options. Go out there, help your friends, help your family, help yourself, and make sure they’re considering all their options. That way we can all have these great experiences together.

Man and woman in underwear having back pain or backache and neck pain or neckache

Best Stretch Neck / Upper Back Pain

Do you want to know the best stretch for neck and upper back pain? You’ve come to the right place!

(Upper Back Pain?…stretch this instead of your upper back to feel better…this is a transcript to the video originally at:


Hey everyone, it’s Dr. Dave! What kind of experience are you creating for yourself out there today?

You know, we all lead busy lives and many of us go to work, or we stay at work here at our homes, and we’re always doing things. And a lot of the things we do every day, involve us working with something in front of us, very rarely doing work behind us, right?

Whether we’re at a computer or we’re driving or we’re using tools or we’re a hygienist or a hairstylist or an auto mechanic, chiropractor, a massage therapist, many of the things we do every day, even around the home with vacuuming and carrying things and doing dishes, ironing, many of these things are in front of us.

We end up engaging in that work and sometimes by the end of the day into the evening we start to notice some soreness, we get tight and tense in that upper back between the shoulder blades and sometimes even up into the neck.

What do we do? A lot of us stretch, we pull that out some more, we pull where we’re feeling the discomfort. We try to stretch it out. But the interesting thing is, that those parts of our body may be over stretched from what we’ve been doing all day.

It’s counter-intuitive…but stretching your chest may be better than stretching your “over-stretched” upper back!

Instead, a good thing to do is to stand in a door-frame and put your arms up on the door-frame like you’re surrendering. You can put your shoulder at 90 degrees, the elbow is at 90 degrees, you stand in the door-frame and you push your chest forward. Not the head and neck, just the chest. Keep the head over the body, until you feel that pulling through the top of the chest and into the shoulder.

You count till 10, 15, or 20 and you relax, shake it off a bit and then do it a second time. The first time will kind of warm it up, the second time will allow you to go a little bit further and just breathe. Let that stretch out a bit, and what that’s going to do is open this area that’s maybe shortened during the day and is pulling or causing the stretch in the back.

Watch the video HERE.

When we open that back up again, it’s going to take the tension and pressure off the back. When we do this day after day and we get into the habit of resetting that, we’re going to notice less of that discomfort into our upper back and neck. That’s a great tool for you guys to use, to keep having those great experiences every day. Keep yourself loose and supple and we’ll share some more tricks with you in the future, so keep your eyes open.

Easy Routine for Neck and Back Pain

Your computer or work routine maybe causing neck and back pain, figuratively “killing you”! Check out this post to learn how you can create a routine to help.

Your work and life can cause back and neck pain.

( Transcript of video originally posted at: )

Hey everyone, it’s Dr. Dave! Hopefully you’re all doing well and you’re out there creating those great experiences.

We have a seven-year-old son Evan and he goes to karate. The other day when I was there watching him, it dawned on me that life is a lot like karate in some ways. Chiropractic even has a karate component! If you hang around to the end of this video, I’m going to give you a special offer to show you how you can learn some chiropractic karate that will help keep you healthy every day, especially if you’re a computer user or you’re doing something repetitive every day.

TRY A KARATE CLASS…It’s good for you! (check out our friends at Summit Karate)

This past weekend, I was out watching my son at Summit Karate, shout out to the people at Summit! Over the years, he’s worked his way up through all these different colored belts. He was gone white, yellow, orange, green, blue and right now he’s a blue advanced belt. Then he’ll go purple, purple advanced, brown, brown advanced and black and everyone’s after that top one right.

It takes a lot of work and you must learn something called a kata. If you’re familiar with karate you know that a kata is a series of movements that when you tie them together it tells a story. For you to move from level to level, belt to belt, you must be able to perform this kata meticulously well. One of the ways you learn is by individualizing the steps making sure that you understand each movement. Then you will be able to tie those movements together, without looking at anything, just totally memorized and understand what that story is by embracing it… making it a part of you.

I thought this is the same thing that happens to us when we go to work every day, or we live our lives habitually. We all have a kata of some kind for the activities that we do. You might have a dishwashing kata, or you might have a laundry kata. You have this bedtime routine which is kind of like a kata, etc.


What we do at the clinic is we teach people this 21-movement range of motion protocol. It’s like fast Tai Chi, or fast yoga, that people can do two or three times every day and it becomes your chiropractic kata. It becomes your motion is life, life is motion kata. Especially if you have sedentary or repetitive work, like computer work or assembly line work, something like that, this is going to be so useful.

Woman with neck pain or neckache
Computer work is especially hard on the spine.

( visit our site for more information about the Toronto Neck and Back Pain Clinic…as well as more interesting blog posts )

What I’d like to do is offer you the opportunity to come by the clinic. I will teach you as a courtesy and at no cost, this kata that you can do two or three times a day. In two or three months, once you’ve memorized it, you’ve embraced it, and you have ownership of it, when you go to do it, even before you start doing it, your nervous system will immediately go into this release mode. You’ll have a positive trigger in your life that can help negate some of the effects of what you’re doing every day that might be affecting your health.

I want you to reach me by email. I want you to set up a day and time. I’m going to take time outside of my schedule specially for you to come in, so I can teach you this. While you’re there if you have aches, pains, back pain, headaches, neck pain or other health concerns or you just want to talk about optimizing and supporting that journey you’re on with your health, I’m happy to do that as a courtesy consultation while you’re there at no charge as well. Because I’d love to meet you and I’d love to teach you this chiropractic kata for you to be able to use every day. It will help you with those great experiences that you’re trying to create every day. The email is at the bottom of this video… reach out and we would love to hear from you.

Back Pain

How Do I Fix My Back Pain?

Back Pain…It Can Be Better! Here’s how…

( Transcription of video found at: )

Hey everyone, it’s Dr. Dave. Hopefully you’re all doing well, enjoying your day, and you’re out there creating those great experiences in your life.

You know what can get in the way of great experience every day? It’s definitely back pain!

Back pain is not fun. I want you to know that it can be better. That’s the big message for today. If you woke up one morning and you suddenly thought how I got 20 years older, how come I can’t just stand straight, how come every step is an effort, and my back just hurts…. And, you think to yourself, where did this come from, how did this happen, why me, what’s this situation I’m in?

You Are Not Alone

I have to tell you that you’re not alone. About 80 percent of North Americans are going to have back pain at some point in their life and about 40 percent of that 80 are going to have chronic back pain. This means that some component of the back issue is going to persist through their life. That’s about a third of the population that has some kind of back issue that’s just not going away, and that’s too much.

I don’t want you to be in that portion of that population.

Back pain is not fun…but treatment is available!


Back pain can happen for a whole bunch of reasons; it can happen from accidents, car accidents, slip and falls, and sporting accidents. It can happen from other things that are more innocuous like pregnancy, working at a physical laborious job every day, working at a sedentary job every day and then, sometimes, unfortunately, believe it or not, back pain can happen for no reason at all.

Why Do I Have Back Pain?

It’s probably because you’ve been walking and engaging in things on this earth of ours as a human being. Stuff has just accumulated and the reality is there’s been a lack of maintenance. It’s just happened as a part of your life. Chiropractors want to know what the difference is, have you been working, or haven’t you? What have you been doing, what haven’t you been doing? Because your story is more relevant than your problem or your pain, and because who has the problem is more significant in getting it better than what the actual problem is.

Usually the diagnosis isn’t that challenging, but the prognosis on what’s going to happen is based on you as a person. It’s based on what you bring to the table and what’re you willing to do. Where have you been, where are you now, and where do you want to go? And why is that so valuable, why do chiropractors spend that time? It’s because we want to avoid masking the situation, masking the pain. Temporary short term solutions are just Band-Aids that help you get by while the problem is actually getting worse. Then you end up in that third of the population that has that chronic back pain. Not good.

Back Pain
Hands on treatment is drug fee and surgery free!


You Can Be Better…but ask for help.

So contrary to popular belief you can be better, you can escape the back pain and it starts with that first step. I don’t like to post a lot of DIY stuff or “do this stretch” for your back or “be aware of this”. It’s very valuable and there’s some merit to it, but my concern is that people view that as a solution to their back pain. It quite often helps but it very rarely fixes the cause of the source of the problem. Without examining you, without sitting down with you, without knowing your story, I don’t want to provide that advice or direction, without you being really clear that maybe you’re just doing some relief stuff but you’re not actually fixing or correcting the problem. Are you making it as good as you want it to be, because maybe we don’t have all that information?

So that first step starts with contacting a chiropractor, making an appointment, doing the consult, doing the exam and only then you can really discover what options you have that are individualised and personalised to you to get you out of that back pain.

If you’re ready for some fun, you want to be pain free, you don’t want to be in that part of the population as a statistic with the chronic back pain… then make the call today. Find the chiropractor in your area that you can go see. If your friends and family see somebody, chances are that you’d like them as well, go see them. If you’re in the greater Toronto area and you can make it to Yonge and Bloor, we’d be happy to see you, I’d love to help. See me on social media, find my website, send me an email, give us a call, I’d be happy to talk to you before you come in, but make that first step, reach out, I’d be happy to help.

If you’d like to reach me, ask me a question, or book an appointment, click HERE.