Stress and Back Pain: How Gordon Family Chiropractic Can Help

Stress comes at us from every angle; it could be financial troubles at home, pressure from your boss at work or at school, or even preparing for a large event. Perhaps you are managing a medical crisis or dealing with an unpredictable loss.

Every time a patient asks what caused this, the answer can always be a one-word answer - STRESS. Sometimes it is a physical stress like a car accident, a slip and fall injury, sports injury, bad work ergonomics, unhealthy sleeping position, or even just repetitive poor posture. Sometimes it is a chemical stress like eating too much sugar or salt, eating too many processed foods, depriving the body of the most basic nourishment like water, vitamins, minerals, or oxygen, exposing yourself to chemicals like lawn, cleaning, or pool chemicals, or something as prevalent as gluten or MSG. Sometimes it is mental/emotional stress that is creating a physiological response in the body. In all of these situations, stress is causing a problem that can produce disorders in the body, and treatment by the chiropractor can likely help.

As humans, our mental state directly affects how the body functions. According to the ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America), back pain and muscle pain is more common in people who have anxiety or mood disorders.

Those who experience regular stress typically experience aches or stiffness along the spine, sharp or localized pain in the neck and pain in the upper or lower back. Those who are stressed may also get knots in their muscles that amplify the pain.

How can a visit to your local chiropractor help you combat this? 

Here at Gordon Family Chiropractic, in Ponte Vedra Beach, we offer the services to help alleviate the joint pain and muscle soreness that results from everyday stress as well as chronic stress. Stress is not easy to avoid, but luckily there are ways to deal with it. Regular adjustments from a chiropractor can support the nervous system, and lessen the flight or fight response most people experience when stressed.

The spinal column controls the nervous system. Messages from the brain make their way down the spinal cord. From there, the messages are sent to various parts of the body. Due to this important role, the adjustments that a chiropractor performs on and around the spinal column can help alleviate the common ailments associated with stress.

Adjustments to the neck and spine move the bones back into the most ideal position, which helps the nervous system to function at its optimal ability. Proper alignment is important in removing the pressure placed on muscles and bones, and eradicating nerve pain. For many patients, the relief of pain can immediately reduce emotional stress. Also, proper alignment can provide relief from tension headaches and other physical pains.

What about massage therapy?

When someone is experiencing muscle pain, the first type of therapy they turn to tends to be massage therapy. Here at Gordon Family Wellness, in Ponte Vedra Beach, we offer various types of massage therapies for all of the major muscle groups.

Massage is a relaxing and an effective way to get away and deal with the symptoms of stress. Massage helps address the body's pH, biochemistry, dysfunction, tension, and stiffness. Not only does receiving regular massages alleviate the symptoms of stress, but it can help improve overall wellness.

Stretching, especially after a massage therapy, can help further release the tension in your muscles caused by stress. The healthcare providers here at Gordon Family Wellness in Ponte Vedra Beach can show you stretching techniques to release the tension in specific muscle groups. For example, Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) stretching relies on reflexes to produce deeper stretches that increase flexibility and strengthen the muscles.

This is just a small example of how the chiropractic team at Gordon Family Wellness can help you.

Please call or visit our website at to request an appointment today!

A Letter from the Doctor | February

A Letter from.png

Have you ever had one of those weeks where everything went right? Me neither. But in the midst of life reminding you that “everyday is a winding road”, we often get sometimes subtle and other times overt signs that life is great and that we are loved and blessed in immeasurable ways.


I felt inspired to reflect on “the long and winding road” that life takes when a patient wrote on their intake form, “today is a great day!” Truly, that should be a bumper sticker.

When I get introspective, I often reflect on the musings of great philosophers like Willie Nelson, Sheryl Crow, Tom Cochrane, Paul McCartney, etc. As the song says “life is a highway,” and I, like so many others, can get frustrated by the stop signs and detours that pop up on my imagined straight and narrow path. Very often, I am part of someone else’s stop sign or detour. Life may be just “rockin’ down the highway,” and then something like a metaphorical car crash causes them to seek my services. I hopefully patch them up to get back “on the road again” and give them sage advice to check back in to see if things are running right in the future so that there won’t be another breakdown. Those tune-ups, alignments, system checks, or whole-body overhauls might seem like they are devastating at the time, but if done right they make the journey so much more enjoyable. Occasionally, all that is needed is a little fuel or a quick jump start to help them keep going. That might just be a word, a laugh, some encouragement, some lessening of a burden, some friendship, some love, or just by sharing time together.

Everyday I drain my tank and exhaust my battery by giving out all that I can, but everyday that tank is filled back up and the battery is recharged by each of you individually and collectively. I deeply feel the love, the encouragement, and the friendship being poured back into me. I embrace the surge of power that comes from time shared, laughter, and healthy interaction. The experience at Gordon Family Chiropractic might sometimes seem like being in traffic, but hopefully it is more like those unforgettable family road trips. Outings filled with excitement, a sense of coziness, the occasional “are we there yet,” and lots of love. We love on our patients and in return you love on us. I am so thankful that I get to take this journey with you. I hope this February brings you lots of love and makes you feel like “king of the road.”

Chiropractic Care and Massage Therapy Should Go Together Like Peas and Carrots


According to research conducted by Consumer Reports magazine, the combination of chiropractic and massage therapy is the most effective when treating pain that has been caused by fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, but the therapies are not limited to treating these two conditions. Whenever a person has been injured from an accident or personal activity, he/she can benefit from regular massage as moderate pressure that is applied to the muscles and soft tissue during this therapy has been shown to have many positive biologic effects. When paired with chiropractic care, here are the top ways that massage therapy can benefit a patient. 

Promotes a Holistic Approach to Care

Since our spine is supported by so many parts of our body, our symptoms must be healed holistically. Instead of depending solely on medication or therapy, a holistic approach to care is where chiropractors in Ponte Vedra focus on more than one area of your health. For example, when a chiropractor corrects the position of a person's vertebrae with adjustments, the patient also needs to have massage therapy so that the tissues and bones surrounding the vertebrae can be targeted for optimal joint and bone health. Along with excellent massage therapy, a holistic approach to chiropractic care may include physical therapy, prescription medication, and dietary plans. 

Prepares the Body for Adjustments

Many patients who experience chiropractic adjustments for the first time may feel a bit tense afterwards. When patients receive a massage before the chiropractic adjustments, they will experience less pain as the tissues and muscles around the spine would be loosened. In addition, if a patient receives a massage after the chiropractic adjustment, he/she will feel less sore. 

Improves Range of Motion 

When a person is injured from a physical activity or a car accident, their range of motion will be negatively affected. The patient is likely to have trouble completing everyday activities and continuous pain that will ultimately impact their overall quality of life. While a chiropractor will work on a patient’s vertebra, a massage therapist will work on the muscle and tissues that surround the spine. The result of regular massage appointment is increased flexibility and range of motion. 

Supports Optimal Circulation

One of the main components of the nervous system is the spinal cord. During a massage appointment, the manipulative movements that the therapist provides on a patient’s back can assist the nervous system with circulation so that blood, oxygen, and nutrients are transported to the proper place in their body. 

Stimulates the Immune System

The combination of massage and chiropractic care is especially important after an injury. The purpose of the massage is to promote optimal healing by releasing the stress and tension that the accident has caused. On the other hand, chiropractic care can heal the trauma that was caused by the car accident or injury. 

Alleviates Stress

The reason many people obtain regular massages is to relieve stress. The same concept is true for a patient who is receiving chiropractic care. A massage can help a patient deal with pain and alleviate stress by loosening the tight muscles in their back. 

To help a person improve range of motion and reduce constant pain, a Ponte Vedra chiropractor can work closely with highly skilled massage therapists to improve a patient’s overall quality of life. In many cases, a massage is strongly recommended before a patient receives spinal adjustments as the therapy will ensure that the muscle tension is relieved before joints are pulled out of alignment. After a patient has received a massage, it will also be easier for a chiropractor to place the joints back into their original position. Many patients have reported that their recovery from an injury or accident is much quicker when receiving chiropractic care and massage therapy.