Neti Pots and Sinus Rinses for Relief of Sinus Pain

Neti Pots and other forms of sinus rinses are a great way to relieve sinus pain and pressure. Some studies suggest that doing sinus irrigation every day helps to shorten the duration of sinusitis and prevent infection in people with chronic sinusitis (To look at a recent review of treatments for sinusitis including nasal irrigation: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26325561).
Neti Pots More Effective
Many people are given antibiotics unnecessarily for the treatment of sinusitis. Based on studies showing no decrease in severity or duration of sinusitis with antibiotic treatment (because most sinusitis is viral or allergic), antibiotics are only recommended after 10 days [...]

Allergy Medications: Possible Increased Risk of Dementia

A new study published in Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) shows that certain allergy medications including diphenhydramine (Benadryl) may be related to changes in cognitive ability, brain deterioration and an increased risk of developing dementia. The reason that I wrote “may be related to” instead of “cause” is that the study shows that there is a strong correlation between people taking these medications and these outcomes. This does not mean that there is a definite causal relationship (in other words, we do not know if these medications cause dementia). News shows will often overstate the findings of [...]

Prevention and Treatment of Bug Bites

DEET

“The current American Academy of Pediatrics and Center for Disease Control recommendation for children older than 2 months of age is to use 10% to 30% DEET. DEET should not be used on children younger than 2 months of age.” (2016 Summer Safety Tips, AAP).

Some animal studies showed increased risk of seizure and neurological damage so many people are concerned about using DEET. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) says: “After reviewing the evidence, EWG has concluded that DEET is generally safer than many people assume and remains a viable option for people in areas infested with disease-carrying pests.” Canada [...]

Seasonal Allergies

When people ask me how I treat allergies, I often answer “it depends.” As a functional medicine doctor, I treat the cause of the symptoms instead of managing the symptoms. Because even seasonal allergies can have many different possible causes, there are also many possible treatments.
Seasonal Allergies
In pharmaceutical medicine, seasonal allergies are treated with an antihistamine. Antihistamines block the signal that your immune cells send out when they encounter an allergen. The antihistamines stop the allergic response at one of the last steps of the process.

In functional medicine, seasonal allergies are treated based on asking why the [...]

Evidence-Based Medicine

You can find many different “magic” supplements that have claims of preventing cancer, promoting weight loss, clearing your skin and making you feel younger. We all wish that these were true. Unfortunately, there are many instances where herbs and nutrients that have no research to back them up are touted to cure all kinds of diseases. Even when there is a herb or nutrient that has shown to be effective for a given condition, there is very little quality control on most supplements (more on this in a later blog post).

A great example of inflated health claims coming from [...]

Understanding Your Body

Both Dr. Procyk and I are dedicated to helping you understand what is really going on inside your body. We spend time explaining what diagnoses mean or how different parts of the body function. We observe that people achieve greater wellness when they have the knowledge and information to be able to address their physical needs.
Understanding Your Body through Education
Many physicians blame patients for not being proactive about their health but I often notice that people do not really understand what is happening when they have conditions like increased blood pressure or diabetes. They relate to their [...]