FUNCTIONAL NEUROLOGY & CLINICAL NEUROSCIENTIFIC REHABILITATION
Functional Neurology is defined as the field of Clinical Neuroscience Rehabilitation that engages the internal and external environment of the individual in a structured and targeted approach to affect positive changes in the neuraxis and consequent physiology and behavior.
The Post Doctorate Diplomate Program in Neurology Certification, although not yet recognized in Canada, is awarded by the American Chiropractic Neurology Board is fully accredited by the US National Commission for Certification Agencies (NCCA), the accreditation body of the National Organization for Competency Assurance (NOCA). The American Chiropractic Neurology Board is the only specialty certification agency for the Chiropractic Profession that is fully accredited by NCCA.
Dr. Ash, a Chiropractor and US Board-Certified Functional Neurologist (accepted Diplomate and fellowship in USA but not accepted in Canada), performs a comprehensive musculoskeletal and neurological examination involving the spinal nerves, spinal cord tracts, cranial nerves, different areas of the brain hemispheres as well as the vestibulo-cerebellar system. The examination may take up to one full hour and if needed, imaging studies, nerve conduction test and other different diagnostic tests would be recommended to objectively evaluate the function of your brain and physical performance. This allows Dr. Ash to identify the compromised or dysfunctional neurological pathways, evaluate their response to environmental stimuli and to develop a customized rehabilitative approach for your minor Traumatic Brain Injury, Post-Concussion Syndrome, MS, Parkinson’s and other Movement Disorders.
Functional Chiropractic Neurologist although not an accepted branch of chiropractic in Canada, are US-Board Certified Specialists in non-drug, non-surgical care for those with neurologically based problems. There are many conditions that people suffer from, that are manageable by Functional Neurologists:
1. Balance disorders
3. Learning and Attention Disorders
5. Vertigo and Dizziness
6. Pain Syndromes
7. Spinal Cord and Nerve Injury
8. Stroke Rehabilitation
9. Movement Disorders (Parkinson’s and Dystonia)
People with all of these concerns and more have been helped by neurology-based chiropractic and Functional Neurologists. This specialty certainly cannot offer a cure for all who present with these problems, but nearly all do improve functionally- some profoundly.
What Does a Visit to a Functional Neurologist Involve?
A Full History is taken, which includes current concerns, past medical history, lifestyle, job, school and family. Next step involves a thorough neurological examination. The aim is to test as many areas of the nervous system possible.
The goal is to find if:
1. An area is working or not
2. It is stable, unstable or sluggish
3. It can be improved by using more healthy areas
4. It can be used to stimulate areas needing improvement
Tests and evaluations that are done:
1. Computerized Baseline Testing (ImPACT)
2. Vestibulo-Ocular testing (VNG)
3. Cerebellum and Vestibular testing
4. OptoKinectic Nystagmus testing
5. Saccadometric Evaluation
This is followed by therapeutic trial. This means a possible treatment is used, and then you are retested immediately to see if it will work.
What Types of Treatments are Used?
Nerve cells need fuel and stimulation to thrive. Treatment is aimed at providing fuel and stimulation through activities that have been shown, either scientific research or past case studies, to stimulate nerve cells. This may include: Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation, Light of different frequency, Tone Pacer Sound of different vibration, Touch, Specific Adjustment to Joints, Balance Activities, Specific Eye Exercises, Cognitive Exercises, Physical Exercises, Nutritional Modifications (Neuro-metabolic approach), Breathing Exercises, Sensorymotor Neural Integrator System. Care is very safe, closely monitored and often fun!
The most important aspect of the treatment is to “re-connect” the dysfunctional pathways through specific stimuli to improve the brain optimal functionality. This allows a better functioning of sensory integration (afferent input) and an appropriate consequent of motor behavior (efferent response). The more synchronous the “timing belt” of the brain, the more fuel-efficient and recognizable the behavior/action.
TRADITIONAL CHIROPRACTIC CARE
LAYING THE FOUNDATION
Chiropractic care is like building a house – certain things have to happen in a particular order in order for everything to stand strong and work correctly. When building a house, if you tried to put up your walls before you had a solid foundation, your walls would be weak and eventually collapse. If you tried to put on your roof before the walls were ready, you would run into the same problem. The same is true for your body. Your body has to go through a particular plan of care in order to repair itself correctly and fully. There are three general phases of chiropractic care …
PHASE 1: RELIEF CARE
If you are in pain when you come into our office, the first objective is to help you feel better. Depending on the severity of your problem, it is typical to need care 2-3 times per week for 4-12 weeks. The pain relief phase uses the palliative care in order to remove nerve interference and reduce the inflammation, paving the way for repair.
PHASE 2: CORRECTIVE/RESTORATIVE CARE
During the corrective care phase, muscles and other tissues are allowed to heal more completely, thereby helping prevent injury. It is typical to need care 4-8 times per month for 6-24 months, depending on your overall health and the severity of your problem.
PHASE 3: STABILIZATION PHASE
Stabilization phase requires exercises and neuro-musculoskeletal re-education to retrain the previously injured tissues. The frequency of visits in this phase is approximately once every 2-3 weeks. Adjustments of subluxations are coupled with balance exercises, ball exercises, synergy system exercises as well as Neuro-Muscular Retraining.
PHASE 4: WELLNESS CARE
Once your body has fully healed, it is important to come in for periodic adjustments to avoid problems in the future. Usually, this only requires a quick visit to the chiropractor once per month, based on your lifestyle and goals.