Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

Dr. Amanda Boccio

 

Serving Albany and Guilderland

2021 Western Avenue, Ste 102

Albany, NY 12203

518-869-3415

PARENTING BATTLE: FORTNITE VS. CELL PHONE

By: Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

The “battle bus” drops the “skins” off to skydive into this virtual apocalyptic world. The world is an island where the last man to survive, wins. Gamers must deploy strategies to stay out of the “storm” which will push players together and force battles so gamers can’t just hide out until the end. This is similar to strategies used in the arena of the “Hunger Games” movies. Sometimes gamers will have to “build battle” to get an advantage and gain higher ground. And of course you can spend your “V-bucks” to make your skins look cooler with new “skins” and “back bling”. Okay, if you have teens, you are very familiar with this language. If you are past this stage of life…be thankful!

As parents, gaming is maddening. It’s all kids talk about and want to do. There is lots of screaming involved and the glory dances if they win. Winning in Fortnite is a big deal! You should celebrate this moment with your child! Just image they won the National Spelling Bee or something noteworthy and tell them how proud you are of them. This is a bonding moment so don’t miss out – they are hard to come by as children get older. I can relate to this gaming enthusiasm…back in 1985, I got past level 3 of Pacman!

So is Fortnite and gaming all bad? Each time I’m faced with a parenting dilemma or situation, I ask myself a few questions: How can I relate to this? What was something from my childhood that is similar in situation? How did I handle it and how did my parents handle it? Do I wish my parents would have done something different for a better outcome? What would my children be doing if they weren’t playing Fortnite (or other annoying teen activity)?

The worst part of Fortnite is that in order to win, you have to kill your opponents. Okay, here is where you consider the maturity of the child as see if they are ready for this type of game. In addition, have a conversation about your personal morals and values on guns and their place in this world. “Killing humans is not okay…this is just a game…in real life there are guns and they are not toys”…elaborate as you see fit. Have this conversation frequently.

I’m an optimist so here is my perspective on the positive aspects of Fortnite vs cell phones.

  1. The chiropractic mommy in me is happy with upright head posture of gaming versus looking straight down at a cell phone. Long term we are all damaging the discs in our necks from flexing forward to this degree. Also, there is less eye strain looking at a larger TV screen versus the 2x4 inch cell screen.

  2. They are playing with friends, socializing and having fun. I remember spending my summers on the farm in the country where I did not see my friends or classmates for 3 months. We had 3 television channels and cartoons were only aired on Saturday mornings from 7:00-10:30. We actually had to get up early to watch the cartoons.We had no organized sports or activities until 7th grade. No library or access to books. Talk about a boring summer. I lived on a farm so we worked every day. I would have loved to be this connected to my friends at this age. Personally, I love to overhear the conversations that the kids are having with their friends through the headsets about school, sports, pop culture and the random “Hey Dude, what kind of underwear do you wear?"

  3. They are learning how to use strategies to defeat the other gamers. This will trigger some neurons in their brains to have to think about their next move. Think of it as the modern day “Chess game” – I know, it’s a stretch. But I would rather have this activity than watching my children mindlessly listen to a conversation between SpongeBob and Patrick talk about crabby patties or watching any show on the Disney Channel. In addition, I don’t have to listen to the background music of Minecraft anymore, which can put anyone into a hypnotic trance.

  4. They are focusing on something that involves concentration for longer than 2 seconds. Games often last 15-20 minutes so don’t bother asking them to do anything until the game is over. You will hear “I’m in the middle of a game”! The alternative activity to Fortnite for most teens is to scroll Instagram and Snapchat. Both which are training their brains to focus on information for 1 second. This lack of concentration spills over into communication with our children…have you noticed they can’t follow a conversation with more than 3 sentences? You need to get your point across in 2 sentences or you have lost them.

  5. Determination to win and succeed. Games encourage the competitive spirit which drives the desire to win. I recently read this book called “GRIT” by Angela Duckworth. A great book for anyone - especially parents. She has studied success in various disciplines including the cadets at West Point. The number one factor in determining someone’s success in life is not their grade point average or academic achievements but rather their “Grit”. Successful graduates of West Point are the grittiest people, those who stick with something until the end…endure the hardships and persevere to the end of the goal. They follow through! The book offers guidance as to how to harness this quality in our youth. She did not mention recommending to play Fortnite…but rather extracurricular activities in general that provide both 1) some type challenge and 2) something the kids want to do (sports, music, LEGOs, etc).

Obviously, as with any device used by children, parental setting should be employed and use common sense time limits on all screen time. As always, if you have questions about this article please feel free to contact me at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415. Follow us on Facebook or visit our website at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com.

 

 

 

July 19, 2018
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ON WISCONSIN!

By: Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

Last month USA Today reported the countries “Drunkest” Cities. Seven of the top ten cities were in my home state of Wisconsin, while New York only had one city in the top 20. Watertown was listed as number 16 on the list.  As we are beginning the celebration of summer I’d like to remind everyone to drink responsibly and please designate a driver. Now, back to this list. Since most of you have never been to Wisconsin, I thought I’d enlighten you as to the culture of this beautiful place.

I don’t think it is any secret of the stereotype that Wisconsin folks love their beer and cheese. Since I am from Wisconsin, I feel that I can spill the beans here. This is true. Wisconsinites love their beer so much that they not only do we drink the beer, we also try to eat it whenever possible. We cook brats in beer, corn on the cob in beer, beer battered fish, beer bread and classic beer cheddar soup. There are entire cookbooks written on how to use beer in recipes…much like cooking with fine wine.

Wisconsin’s major league baseball team is the Milwaukee “Brewers” who play their games in Miller Stadium. You may recognize beers such as Miller Lite or Old Milwaukee beers. There is also a classic beer called Old Style which is brewed in LaCrosse, WI, also the home to the world’s largest six pack. One of my favorite summer beers is Leinenkugal’s Summer Shandy. We locals will refer to this beer as “Leines”.  Another brand you may have heard of is New Glarus beers. Did you know that Wisconsinites typically have 2 refrigerators in their houses? Yes, one for food and one just for the beer.

Let’s talk cheese. There is no comparison to Wisconsin cheese. My father used to take me to the cheese factory when I was little to get fresh cheese curds. They literally melt in your mouth when you bite into them.  Whenever I go back to Wisconsin, I have visit a local creamery and bring cheese back with me to New York. A few years ago, I decided to really stock up so I bought 15 pounds of cheese and stuffed it into my suitcase. Needless to say, my husband was mortified. He was giving me a hard time about getting through security with all that cheese. I reassured him that we would be fine. Well, we sent our bags through the scanner, the security light goes off and the guys come running. “Whose bag is this?”  My husband shoots me this look of death. The guard opens the suitcase full of cheese and begins to question me. I explain to him that it is cheese from Wisconsin…like he should be as excited as I am. He wasn’t! He said that since cheese looks like explosives, we now have to swab every side of every block of cheese! He was obviously annoyed and said, “Don’t they have cheese in New York?”  Now I just have the cheese shipped out to my house.

You have heard of this football team called the Green Bay Packers right? Well, everyone in Wisconsin loves the Packers and talks about them like they are their close relatives. Most people are still mourning the recent loss of our beloved Jordy Nelson to another team. The minute you cross the state line, it seems like everyone wears the green and gold Packer gear…hats, shirts, pants, jackets, etc. We are so proud of our Packers…even when they lose. The Packers are the only publicly owned NFL team. The citizens of Wisconsin literally have ownership in the Packers. There is a 40 year waiting list for season tickets. A friend of mine just got his season tickets that his parents signed him up for on the day he was born…43 years ago!

A few other recognizable businesses that originated from Wisconsin are: Kohl’s department stores, Harley Davison Motorcycles, Jack Link’s Jerky, John Deer, Trek Bicycles, Matthew’s Bows (proud to say my nephew works for this company), McPherson Custom Guitars and Kohler bath products. Did you know that many of the countries cranberries are grown in Wisconsin? And if you frequent Trader Joes around the holidays, they carry this danish called the Pumpkin or Almond Kringle, these delicious goodies are from a company in Wisconsin called O&H Danish Bakery. Another brand you may have seen here in New York is a dairy brand called, Organic Valley. They produce organic milk products and they actually have a distribution center in my hometown of Cashton, WI. Whenever I see their products here, I always buy them because I know some of the farmers who produce for this company.

I am a strong supporter of buying local, even if “local” is a thousand miles away. It makes me feel a little closer to home. Maybe you will recognize a few of these brands when considering your purchases. Just know that there is some hard working Wisconsinite making those products. A final reminder to have a safe and enjoyable summer but enjoy your beverages responsibly. As always, if you questions about this article or just want to talk beer, cheese or Packers, please feel free to contact me at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415. Follow us on Facebook or visit our website at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com. Go Packers!

PEDIATRIC CHIROPRACTIC CARE: OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF KIDS

BY: Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

 

 

 

When my son was 4 years old, he asked me “Mom, why are you carpet-practor?” Of course I had to laugh hysterically then explain the correct pronunciation of “chiropractor”. He has since gotten to understand more about sports chiropractic and reap the benefits. Both of my children are my also patients. Over the years, they have learned to listen to their bodies and know what needs attention. They are the ones coming to me and asking to be treated - not me telling them it is time for a “tune-up”.

 

I wanted to share some perspective from my children and other parents who bring their children in for chiropractic care. The following is a brief interview of my children, Tristan and Taylor. As well as, testimonials from parents who bring in their children regularly for care. Here is what they had to say about being chiropractic patients.

 

What is chiropractic care?

            Tristan: “Working on your body so it feels better.”

            Taylor: “Adjusting and massaging.”

 

What is your favorite part about me working on your body?

            Tristan: “I love the lower back stretchy thing.” (He is talking about traction.)

            Taylor: “I like the massage and when you tape my sore legs.”

 

How do you know when your body needs some work done on it?

            Tristan: “When I’m really sore after practice or games, when I get a headache or my tailbone hurts.”

            Taylor: “When my back or legs hurt after gymnastics practice.”

 

What does it feel like to get a spinal adjustment?

            Tristan: “It feels sooo good!”

            Taylor: “It feels good and relaxing.”

 

What would you tell parents who may be nervous about their children going to a chiropractor?

            Tristan: “What is there to be nervous about?”

            Taylor: “I don’t understand why they would be nervous.”

 

Is there anything else you want to share about your chiropractic experience?

            Tristan: “Nope, I’m good.” (haha - typical tweenager)

Taylor: “I like it that you taught me how to tape my legs and ankles when they are sore. One time at gymnastics practice, the coach asked me to help tape a teammate because she didn’t know how to use the kinesiotape and I did. It made me feel proud.”

 

 

My personal testimony

I have been treating my children since the day they were born. We started with gentle infant massage, craniosacral therapy, various chiropractic adjusting techniques and have advanced into more dynamic treatments including stretching, strength exercises, taping, cupping, acupuncture and they have even used the Normatec Recovery Pants.

Why do I treat my children? I understand the concept that we simply cannot run our body into the ground with the physical demands of life, sports and stress without it taking its toll – regardless of our age. The joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments all take a beating and over time joints become strained while muscles and fascia get filled with adhesion and knots. Both of which can lead to faulty sports mechanics and injuries. When pain starts to set in, you cannot take enough NSAIDs to realign your joints and remove muscle adhesions. And with our national opioid epidemic roaring strong, I want my children to learn how to remove pain from their body without resorting to drugs. 

 

 Testimony by Wendy Keaney

“I take my children to Dr. Kim on a monthly basis, during the seasons that they compete.   She provides much more than adjustments and physical therapy.  As a mom, I appreciate the education Dr. Kim provides my children on the specific demands their sports put on their bodies and why.  That knowledge has made them more aware of their everyday aches and pains and how to treat them, before they turn into more serious overuse injuries.”

 

Testimony by Thomas Green

“We believe that proper spine alignment at any age returns excellent overall health benefits.  Our hope by adjusting our children at a young age is to maintain a strong immune system and prevent sports injuries as they grow.  Chiropractic adjustments fit well into our overall family belief in prevention of diseases, over our lifetime, instead of treatment after the fact.”

 

Testimony by Mandi Tooker

My 3.5 year old twins have been going to Dr. Kim for a couple years now for help with leg muscles and GI complaints. She has been an amazing asset in their care, they will ask to see her when feeling in pain. She will massage and stretch muscles from head to toe. They love going there and helping with the “clicker”. She really knows what she’s doing and highly recommended.

 

Testimony by Sheryl English

“I decided to take my seven year old daughter to a chiropractor because she plays several sports, and takes dance and gymnastic lessons. She also wears a full backpack to and from school. So when she began complaining of headaches I was concerned that she strained something in her neck and would be prone to injury because of an imbalance in her body or lack of muscle strength. My daughter’s pediatrician was in favor of her visiting a chiropractor and liked Dr. Kim Keeling at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center.

At the first appointment, Dr. Keeling observed my daughter’s posture and examined her from head to toe. My daughter can be fearful of new experiences but immediately felt very relaxed with Dr. Keeling. We received a simple and quick exercise to do at home, and Dr. Keeling massaged my daughter’s neck and muscles along the back to loosen them. She also worked on my daughter’s hips to ensure that they were aligned. Dr. Keeling uses massage or a painless, non-invasive tool that makes clicking sounds when working on my daughter. My daughter loves going to the chiropractor. She finds it very relaxing and always feels great afterwards. I have been amazed at how tight my daughter’s muscles can be and that she has trigger points at such a young age. I believe that the chiropractic appointments are helping my daughter to stay in shape and the benefits will last her a life time.”

 

As always, if you have questions about this article and pediatric chiropractic care, I would be happy to answer any questions you may have. Our consultations are always free. Please feel free to contact us at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415. Please visit our website for more information at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com. We would be happy to be a part of your health care team.

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 08, 2018
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RISE AND SHINE

By: Dr. Amanda Boccio

 

Are you one of the millions of Americans who have trouble sleeping a few nights a week or more? A healthy amount of sleep is essential for our optimal physical and mental wellbeing.  It improves alertness, productivity, and the ability to heal and recover.  In general, adults need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night; but requirements do vary based on age, lifestyle and health. If you are feeling less than your best due to poor sleep habits, consider making changes to your nighttime routine. Follow these suggestions to improve your sleep hygiene practices:

 

1. Limit napping:  When you take naps longer than 30 minutes, particularly in the afternoon, it decreases the amount of sleep you need at night.  This is because our bodies require a certain amount of sleep within a 24 hours period, but no more.  It may also make it hard to fall asleep fast, because napping diminishes “sleep debt” required for ease of sleep onset.

 

2. Establish a consistent bedtime routine.  Ideally, you should go to bed and wake up at the same time (plus or minus 20 minutes) every day, even on weekends and on vacations.  An hour before bedtime, turn off the mind stimulating electronic devices.  Don’t watch TV in bed, instead, read in a chair, meditate, or take a shower or bath.  An Epsom salt soak helps ease muscle tension and achy joints, and may help melt away stressors from the day. 

 

3. Create an optimal sleeping environment.  Your bedroom should be dark, quiet, and a cool, comfortable temperature- between 60-67 degrees is ideal.  Turn off bright lights and the TV.  If you are a “clock watcher”, make sure the clock is out of sight.  Consider background “white noise” like a humidifier or fan.  Lastly, (as hard as it may be) if your pets disturb your sleep, do not allow them on the bed.

 

4. Evaluate your mattress and pillows:  Your bed should be comfortable and supportive.  Most good quality mattresses have a life expectancy of about 10 years.  Consider the age of your mattress if you have noticed a sudden onset of nighttime discomfort or poor sleep quality.  Your pillow should keep your head and neck in a neutral position, regardless of your sleeping position.

 

5. If you are awake in bed for more than 10 minutes, get up! It is common to lie awake worrying about why you can’t fall asleep, or with a mind that won’t stop racing.  When this happens, get out of bed, sit in a chair or on the floor in the dark, and let your mind race and ruminate until you feel tired- then go back to bed. Don’t turn on the TV, look at your phone, or use the Internet during this time. 

 

6. Get regular exercise:  30 minutes of aerobic exercise per day has shown to significantly improve sleep quality.  In general, strenuous workouts should be avoided in the evening and close to bedtime because endorphins released during intense exercise may cause difficultly initiating sleep.  Exercise at any time of the day that works best for you, but never at the expense of your sleep.  Quality sleep is required to help you heal, recover, and get the most out of your exercise training. 

 

Optimize your sleep hygiene practices and wake rested and ready to conquer the day, every day! As always, if you have questions about this article, we are here to help.  Our consultations are always free.  Please feel free to contact us at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415.  Visit our website for more information at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com. We would be happy to be a part of your health care team.

 

March 08, 2018
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GOOD MORNING MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD

By: Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

 

How many of you go through this routine in the morning? The alarm goes off so you remove your dental mouth guard or CPAP machine, put on your glasses or contacts, clean your dentures, adjust your hearing aid, put on any necessary braces on your joints and then make sure you changed out your orthotics to the right shoes for the day. Are we all becoming life-size versions of Mr. & Mrs. Potato Head? It seems silly that we have to put on all our parts for the day so our bodies can function and we look presentable to the world. Who is really aging gracefully??? Let’s be honest – aging stinks! (All in humor)

 

Every day in the clinic I hear “I just can’t do what I used to be able to do” or “Every day something different hurts” or “I love to play tennis but I just can’t do it anymore”. I hear your frustration and I agree that it is maddening. We all just want to go about living doing the same things we love to do. The reality of our aging bodies usually starts affecting us around age 40. So any of you young kids out there (anyone under 40) enjoy whatever pain free days you have left. For all the rest of us, how can we hold onto our inner youth while trying to preserve our Mr. Potato Head parts?

 

  1. Learn about natural ways to alleviate pain and take care of your body. Chiropractic care is one of the best strategies to treat and manage many back and neck conditions. Some of our patients get relief in a few visits but some choose to continue a treatment schedule that helps their specific pain to stay at bay. Our Medical Massage Therapists are all trained and experienced in working with patients in pain. We have many tools and techniques to tailor a plan that works for you!

     

  2. Be realistic about your injuries. Is the damage to a particular joint beyond the body’s ability to heal itself? If you have had multiple orthopedic specialists tell you that you need a knee replacement, then strongly consider getting the surgery.The few months of rehabilitation after surgery will be worth it if it enhances your quality of life.

     

  3. Redefine your capabilities and keep an open mind to trying new activities. Accepting that your body is getting older doesn’t mean that you have to turn into a couch potato. Weather it is playing a sport or putting mulch in your yard, your body may feel more soreness for the next few days than it would have 20+ years ago. You still need to continue moving but you may have to take breaks periodically between long sessions of yard work or house work. Try a new sport that is less aggressive on your body but still provided the social aspects you are looking for.

 

  1. Stay involved in the sports and activities that bring you joy. For example, if you were a competitive athlete, there are still ways to stay involved. Look for an organization or league of similar age group or ability level, volunteer as a coach or mentor for a youth program, look for an opportunity to help organize tournaments or run the time clock, etc.

 

This aging process may not be anything that we imaged but it doesn’t need to be all doom and gloom. Changing our perspective can enhance the quality of our golden years. As always, if you have questions about this article or want assistance with continuing to live and age with an active lifestyle, we are here to help. Our consultations are always free. Please feel free to contact us at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415. Please visit our website for more information at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com. We would be happy to be a part of your health care team.

 

 





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Chiropractor - Albany and Guilderland, Sports & Spinal Wellness Center (Spinal Wellness Center), 2021 Western Ave, Albany NY, 12203 518-869-3415