Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain And Living A Rich Life with Elizabeth Cappelletti

HOS 11 | Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain

Blair Upper Cervical Chiropractic has always been about gravity and how to translate it into a corrective procedure in the most effective way possible with the least amount of resistance. It has been eliminating crippling low back pain with no twisting or popping involved. What really happens is that your neck is adjusted to sit on top of your head the way it was designed so that your lower back can function properly. Elizabeth Cappelletti shares her stories of suffering from crippling lower back pains and how she felt relief when she was adjusted by Blair Upper Cervical Chiropractic.

Elizabeth Cappelletti is a Marriage and Family Therapist that uses a whole body approach to help her clients feel better from an emotional standpoint and a physical standpoint. I look forward for you to hearing her testimony on Is your Head on Straight.

Listen to the podcast here:

Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain And Living A Rich Life with Elizabeth Cappelletti

Elizabeth, I’m so happy you’re here with me. I can’t wait to talk to you about all things Blair Chiropractic. You’re an amazing woman and you have a lot to offer but I want to talk to you about your story. Can you give a little background into what you experienced leading up to finding Precision Chiropractic?

Thank you for having me here. It started when I was a waitress and I was working for a restaurant where I had to carry those big heavy trays. I remember one day specifically telling them my back was feeling a little funky. I started running and when I was eighteen, I have done a lot of running on pavement not stretching properly. My back was a little achy and I can remember specifically picking up this large tray with fajitas and all kinds of stuff on it. Something on my back snaps and I drop the entire tray of food all over the ground. Being young, they saw that happened but I didn’t say anything. They just didn’t know. That was the start where I started having aggravation. After that, I became a massage therapist because I’m a healer and I love helping others. There will be times that my back would be super achy. I didn’t know what it was. I never had any X-rays or anything like that. One day, I was doing chair massage and I wasn’t trained in how to carry the chair massager, this contraption. I remember I was feeling achy. I picked it up and then put it in the car. Then I got to the gas station and I got out of the car and I basically fell to the ground because the pain was so intense. I had to show the person that I was in so much pain. At this point, I’m maybe 23. I’m walking like a 90-year-old woman at this point. I can barely even walk.

HOS 11 | Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain
Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain: Chiropractic isn’t a religion. It’s a science.

I went and told the person, “I’m so sorry. I can’t help you out today.” I go home. I start to get up the stairs. I got stuck in the middle of the stairs just screaming, crying and I couldn’t move. My brother’s girlfriend came home and found me. She had to help me, take me to the doctor’s office where they did X-rays. They found nothing. They gave me a bunch of painkillers and muscle relaxers which basically numbed my brain and helped me sleep. It was horrible. I had weeks where I was in bed. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t sit up. Going to the bathroom, I had to crawl to the bathroom and I was having a lot of suicidal thoughts. I thought this is going to be my life. I couldn’t even be in a wheelchair. I’d have to be on one of those lay down wheelchairs. I thought, “Maybe they’re going to have to do something to my spine.” It was really bad. I’ve always wanted a family and I love to dance and so all of those things I thought are out the window for me.

You went from being a healthy active, eighteen-year-old woman who was athletic and confident. You went to massage school because you wanted to help serve humanity and help them feel better to being completely crippled where you were literally thinking about how your life can’t continue on because you couldn’t get out of bed. How in the world did you get from that place to being able to even get into the office?

It was around Easter time. I think my mom’s way of helping me was through food, in one way. She kept bringing me chocolate. I gained 20 pounds. On the other hand, she was part of a networking group at that time and your colleague, Dr. Tomp, was in that group. In the process of being a massage therapist, I worked for a lot of chiropractors. When I’d have the aches and pains, they would help me and fix it temporarily. I’ve gone to other chiropractors where sometimes I love that they want to help but it felt like a money racketeering thing like, “Sign up and come in three days a week.” I didn’t have a lot of money.

I am so glad that you brought that up because it’s true. Chiropractic can be helpful and obviously all of these chiropractors that are my colleagues are in business because they’re helping people. I do understand what you’re saying where they scare you into thinking you need three times a week. Maybe some people do need that in the beginning but definitely not for the rest of your life. That’s a lot of input to your nervous system. You, as a massage therapist, work for chiropractors. You were hurting and you were like, “Can you help me out?” and they’d crack your back, and you got through the day.

Yes. At this point though, when I was immobile, I was so depressed. When my mom said, “Let’s go to this person,” I was like, “No. I’m not going to go to another person. I don’t want anybody to touch me. Nobody is going to be able to help me.” She dragged me here anyway. I was probably laying down on the ground when I came in with my feet up on one of the chairs. It was completely different than anything I’ve ever experienced. I was able to be pain-free. I know that after I get adjusted I’d feel immediate relief. I can start to feel the changes and the shifts start to happen. It usually takes a couple of days or a full week before I’m pain-free. It was like a miracle. I sent him a Christmas card that made him cry. I’ve continued. There’s been times where I’ve been in a good place but there’s been times I’m a klutz and I’ll hit my head or I’ll do things and trip and fall. When I’m carrying my children and they get heavy and that can mess me up and I’ve started coming to you, which has been great. It’s been wonderful having you here to help me.

Part of the reason why I did join the practice, it’s been nine and a half years, because Dr. Tomp was basically at capacity in 2008 when I joined him as an intern. He recognized that he wasn’t going to be able to have the impact in his community the way he wanted to because there are limits to matter. He’s only one person. He was so busy after eighteen years of practice. He needed to bring somebody in. Thankfully, we started working together and I’ve been here nine and a half years. It’s been such a blessing to get to know all the people that he cared for long before I ever came on the scene. Now, I have a helping hand in taking care of you too. Can you tell me from your perspective the difference? You’ve worked for the chiropractors. You’ve had other kind of chiropractor care. What’s the difference between what you had with them and the Blair Upper Cervical specific method and why do you feel like that made the biggest difference?

HOS 11 | Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain
Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain: There’s measurements but for Blair specific chiropractic, it’s not one size fits all for every person.

This is my selling point when I talk to clients and other people who are in pain and I try to encourage them to go to you. When people think of chiropractic care, they think you go in and there’s like, “Pop, pop, pop,” and they’re just twisting you’re neck and a lot of people are really scared of that. For me, not to knock anybody else but I feel when I come here and I’m out of alignment, you take out my X-ray, you look at all the stuff. There are measurements. You know my body now, but for Blair specific chiropractic, it’s not one size fits all for every person. They may do the same exact cracking of the neck. In fact, there is no cracking of the neck that happens. It’s very specific with that table. First, you measure my legs and do all the stuff to make sure that I’m actually out of alignment. Sometimes, all I need is some blocking and just some muscles stuff. I know now when I’m out of alignment. I can tell and you can tell too and you show me what it looks like even on my daughter with the feet being off. It’s very specific, it’s non-traumatic. You have us rest afterwards, which is something totally different as well. It’s a very different way to go and especially if somebody is afraid if they’ve had somebody popping their neck or they’re afraid of that type of thing. It’s totally different.

We make it clear on our website when you come to DrHoefer.com or DrTomp.com to read about what we do and there is no twisting, there’s no popping, there’s no cracking because people are afraid of that. I totally understand. Then there are people that have had surgery that literally can’t have their neck cracked or people that have osteoporosis that if we pushed on them, they would break. I’m glad that you highlighted the specificity in the detail that we take because we do pride ourselves in engineering that very specific correction. It’s like a fingerprint. Nobody else in the whole world is going to get your adjustment because you’re the only you there is. What is better in your life? You’re out of pain. What else could you say contributes to in your daily life being in alignment, holding your adjustment?

I’m an active person. Running is of out of the picture for me, anything high impact and I had to recognize that because I have two herniated discs on my back. At one point I finally got an MRI. Part of my pain was the two herniated discs in my back. When you’re doing your work, it’s up in my neck and what happens up in my neck affects my lower back. That blows my mind. A lot of times when I was going to chiropractors before, they were adjusting my low back because that’s where the source of the pain was. It blows my mind how you do the work in my upper cervical and it has a reaction in my low back.

It’s all about gravity and how we translate gravity. If you’re misaligned at the top of your neck, your brain stem orients your body in such a way that you’re going to try to translate gravity the most effective way possible with the least resistance. That means you have to twist and turn and compensate. Then if you think about it like tires on a car, if your alignment is not correct, one tire is going to wear out quicker. When you’re driving and you let go of the steering wheel and everything veers to the right, that’s an issue with your alignment. It’s so true in your body that if your head isn’t sitting on straight over your neck the way it is designed to, your body is going to twist and torque and compensate and you’re going to veer right, you’re going to veer left or your discs are going to start to degenerate. The transfer of energy has to happen regardless. We live in an environment where there’s gravity. That’s where the whole issue of discs bulging and getting irritated come into play. When we adjust the top of your neck and your head is on straight, literally, physically, metaphorically, your body aligns itself to that position, and then the discs aren’t as irritated. Even though we are adjusting your neck, it’s 100% affecting the function of your low back and the function of your discs in your low back.

HOS 11 | Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain
Eliminating Crippling Low Back Pain: Structure dictates function.

A lot of times I talk to my patients and I know you’ve heard me say this 100 times, “Structure dictates function.” If we get your structure in order, your function is going to improve. Maybe you do still have these bulging or herniated discs but they’re not irritated to the point of pain. It’s not affecting you in a way that is debilitating. That is a huge thing to understand that we’re not just chasing the symptom. There is times when we do things like blocking to the low back or activator to the muscles in your lumbar spine to help relieve some of the tension. It’s relieving the symptom and supporting your upper cervical correction in a way to keep it holding.

Usually, you do that when I’m not out of alignment.

What’s important to understand is that when you’re holding your upper cervical alignment, your body is healing. I’m so glad that you’re bringing to clarity and understanding all of these different aspects that happened. When people are listening they’re like, “What do you mean she checks her legs and she doesn’t adjust her low back?” You said you were dragged here by your mom. You were like, “Whatever.” You were a skeptic. You’re like, “This isn’t even going to help.” My favorite patient is the patient who doesn’t believe that it’s going to work. To be honest, chiropractic isn’t a religion. It’s a science and you don’t have to believe it. It helps to have a positive attitude. I’m happy that you experienced that in a way. I’m not happy that you were suffering. I’m happy that you came in not even thinking this was going to make a difference, and it literally changed your life.

I’m an active person. It affects my mental health too when I’m not able to exercise. It helps me to be balanced. It helps me to be calm. Exercise is important for us. I’m less frustrated, less stressed. It’s one of my ways to help me and feel good about my body and to be able to interact with my kids and run around with them, get on the ground and crawl with them and go to the park and lift them up. Those are all important things. I can get up and cook and be there and I can dance and all of those things. If it wasn’t for the fact that I’m where I’m at now, I wouldn’t have been able to do all of that. Let alone the other part of carrying my children being pregnant. I don’t know how that would have been possible had I not found you.

That is so neat because there’s so much implication in having your head on straight. When my listeners listen to my intro, they heard me tell you that, “I’m going to be talking to my awesome patients about how their lives are impacted and the different symptoms that we help,” but it’s so much more than that. It is mental health. It is being present with your family. It is having a good positive outlook on life and knowing that there is hope for a future. All of that is because your brain and your body are connected the way they were designed to be. I’m so thrilled that getting your low back corrected all those years ago has led to such a rich life and the knowing that it’s possible to have this rich life. I know you’re a huge advocate for our work and you do everything you can. From inviting me to free networking groups to having us collaborate on talks that we do for the community to coming to a professional networking night that we have and you talk up and down all about Blair Chiropractic and how much it’s changed you.

Sending in everybody I know.

Whenever I have referral from Elizabeth I’m like, “She’s awesome.” You’re going to do great. I am getting to the point where I am going to have to start bleeding into Monday mornings. That’s okay. I’m happy to work and help people. I want to end this part of the interview with you understanding that her crippling, debilitating low-back pain and all of the co-morbid conditions that went with it from being desperate in pain were relieved with getting a Blair Upper Cervical correction. We’re going to have you come back for part two and we’re going to talk about your profession. We’re going to talk about your family. We’re going to talk about the impact that makes in your life with your kids, your husband and then all the people that you sent to me. It’s important for people to understand that professionals that do jobs also see the benefit and then they refer their friends and family in. I want to thank you so much for sharing your story. I know that it’s emotional and I’m thankful for your vulnerability. I’m thankful that you trust me. I’m grateful that I got to inherit you. Thank you so much, Elizabeth, for being here.

Thank you for having me.

You heard an incredible story from my friend Elizabeth who had horrible low-back pain to the point where she was crippled and not even being able to understand if she was going to live a full life. I hope that you think about that. If you know anybody that has low-back pain or disc issues or sciatica, anything like that, let me know. Write me, email me, text me, call me, get a hold of me through my websites, DrHoefer.com or go to BlairChiropractic.com to find out if there is a Blair doctor in your area. We are all over the country and we’re getting to be all over the world. If you know anybody that’s got low-back pain, I would love to be able to refer you to a good Blair doctor in your neighborhood or you can come see me in Rancho Santa Margarita. Thanks for listening. I’ll talk to you soon.

About Elizabeth Cappelletti

Elizabeth Cappelletti, MA, LMFT, is a Marriage and Family Therapist, Life Coach, Author and Mental Health Expert. She is also a Certified Massage Therapist, and while she is no longer a practicing clinician of massage, her many years of experience have proven to be invaluable to the work that she currently does. She created the Mind-Body Wellness Center because wellness cannot exist if we are out of balance in either our mind or body. Many times it is our body that gives us the first clue that something is wrong with us emotionally. In fact, she has had several clients over the years that have been referred to her by their medical doctor after discovering that their health issue may be related to stress. This may come in the form of stomach aches, chest pain, headaches, body pain, etc. The list can go on and on. It is also true that stress can make a pre-existing health issue worse. Unfortunately our culture has taught us to bypass our emotions and to push on with-out acknowledging what we authentically feel. This creates great dis-ease in the body and the mind. Our body has amazing ways of communicating pain to us- so if you don’t acknowledge the emotional pain you will end up feeling it physically one way or another!

She uses the term “holistic” to describe the type of work that she does because the therapy and life coaching that she provides encompasses the thoughts, feelings, and emotions as well as physical health, nutrition and interpersonal relationships of everyone that I work with. I also use many different psychological theories, tools and techniques to meet my clients where they are because there is no “one-size fits all” method to therapy. She is always growing and seeking to learn more both in her personal and professional life. Elizabeth feels that life is a journey and it is important for us to continually be growing and learning more, for ourselves and others.

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