Checked your phone today?

How many times do you think you’ve checked it? A recent survey showed, on average, we check our phones 110 times a day. I looked into this because I caught myself checking social media and emails for 15 minutes before closing and putting the phone down…20 seconds later I picked it back up. For no reason – just picked it up and opened it.

It got me questioning – why? It’s because I’m addicted. Every time I get a notification, dopamine, a feel good hormone gets released in my brain. It makes me want to go back again and again.

When we do this regularly the pattern becomes etched in our neural pathways.

An article by Psychology Today described it well. “This behaviour — checking the screen — quickly becomes habit by nature of its routine. But when that habit turns from a want into a need — meaning we start to feel anxious or disconnected from the world around us if we don’t check the phone — then the action morphs from habit into reflex.”

747_contest_imageAs a Chiropractor, I’m trained to find areas within the nervous system that are disconnected. These areas prevent the brain and the body from communicating effectively, resulting in increased spinal and muscle tension and other health complaints. This disconnection happens when the nervous system gets stressed. The 3 main stressors on the system are physical, emotional and chemical.
Smartphone addiction has aspects of all three.

Physical – prolonged sitting while looking down is causing an increase in neck and shoulder pain. This increase is especially noticeable in kids.

Emotional – The social disconnection when using our phones is being linked to higher rates of depression and anxiety.

Chemical – our levels of melatonin are affected when we use our phones at night and sleep becomes difficult. This leads to increases in stress hormones and the chemical balance of our body is changed.

It’s the perfect storm for your nervous system – and hence why as a Chiropractor I feel it’s important to address. So what can we do to break the habit?

Some of the things I’ll be trying in the next few weeks are

  • Leaving my phone on the bench at night
  • When with other people I’ll leave my phone in my bag.
  • Setting aside times in the day to look at social media, but then getting back to being productive (or more productive than I was)

The internet is filled with ways to try and change the behaviour. I’ve seen these articles time and time again and never took any notice, but I think it’s time we all try and address the triggers in our day to day lives, for the good of our health and our relationships.

Below are some resources I found useful.

Simon Sinek – Addiction to Technology

13 Ways to Break your iPhone addiction (that actually work)

Chiropractic and Brain Function

New research shows adjusting the spine changes brain function.

The research found that when areas of spinal dysfunction are adjusted changes in brain function are seen. These changes occurred predominately in the prefrontal cortex.

This area is responsible for decision making, memory and attention, intelligence, processing of pain and emotional response to it, autonomic function, motor control, eye movements and spatial awareness.

Chiropractors have long observed a wide variety of changes in those who get adjusted. People often say they feel better or focus better and notice improvements in movement and coordination. This study takes us a little further down the path of understanding why this could be.

To find out more – click here – Australian Spinal Research Foundation.

Is stress causing your pain?

How is emotional stress affecting your body?

Ever turned your head or bent over and instantly felt pain? Nothing you did was strenuous or different, so why the pain?
Often it’s due to emotional stress – ongoing stress can cause changes in the body’s nervous system which can lead to constriction in blood vessels and reduction of blood flow to the various soft tissues, including muscles, tendons and ligaments. In turn, this results in muscle tension, spasm and then suddenly the pain begins.
Chiropractic assists the nervous system to function at its best under this stress, but it is also highly important we address the initial cause and find ways to reduce your stress.
So today, slow down, think happy thoughts and find ways to manage your stress – your body will thank you!

Joining Nourish Melbourne


We’re proud to be a part of Melbourne’s newest health and wellness collaborative, Nourish Melbourne. Nourish brings together the best of Melbourne’s natural, organic and holistic health businesses. Check out our page here !

We are thrilled to be able to offer all Nourish Members their Initial consult for $49 (usually $90) and follow up consults for $45 (normally $52), ongoing.

The Membership also enables you to receive ongoing Member only offers from the likes of health food stores, to organic beauty products, yoga studios, personal trainers and more. Nourish Melbourne also hold fun and involved health and wellness events on various topics which Members have discounted access to. If you want to know more about the Membership head to


It’s so gentle – how could it possibly work?

Throughout my years in practice, I have been asked hundreds of questions about how the technique I use works. Many people have asked if I’m a witch doctor, many don’t care how it works, but just know they feel better. For those that have seen multiple Chiropractors, you would be aware that they all practice in very different ways. All Chiropractic techniques have benefits and usually provide great results. I choose to use a technique called Torque Release (TRT) and wanted to share with you a little about how it works.

I want you to think about tuning a guitar. By adjusting the pegs at the end of the guitar you can change the tension on the string. This tension will determine the note the string can play. It is at this perfect tension that the guitar will play beautiful songs.
Guitar tuning

The spinal cord also works like a guitar string. Tension placed on either end of it will alter the frequency wave used to transmit messages from brain to body and vice versa.

TRT focuses on the “tuning pegs”: The connection points between the spinal cord and spinal column. The pressure testing of certain levels of your spine during your appointment is to find the exact areas that need to be adjusted to affect this tension. When we find these areas, we use the Integrator or ‘clicker’. Some of you may notice a tingle that will travel from the adjustment point to elsewhere in your body.

3d rendered illustration of the male nerve system

When the nervous system is working optimally, it is not only pain that eases, but the overall function of the body improves. This is why many patients report a feeling of relaxation, better sleep or clearer thinking.

It is for these reasons many people will continue to see us even when they are feeling well. It’s not because I’m telling them they need to. The choice is always yours as to how often you want to use Chiropractic in your healthcare routine. But just remember, that I’m always here for whenever you feel your nervous system could do with a ‘tune up’.

For those interested in finding out more about TRT, this page has an extensive range of research articles to read TRT Articles

Beat those Winter Blues!

Living in Melbourne we all know what it feels like to suffer from “seasonal affective disorder” aka, the winter blues. This time of year is cold, wet, and let’s face it, it can be downright miserable. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be! Here are some tips to help you get through this winter.

Get adjusted– Regular chiropractic treatment keeps us moving and functioning at our best. The nervous system is the master controller of the body and when it’s not working well, we can get symptoms from back pain to sleep disturbances. Get your spine and nervous system checked to ensure your brain is communicating well with the rest of the body.

Have a massage– regular massage has been found to increase immune function and decrease markers of inflammation. It’s also associated with an increase in oxytocin- our happy hormone, and a decrease in our stress related hormones such as cortisol.
Read the article

Get outside– It may sound counter intuitive, but getting outdoors is a great way to beat the blues. We spend so much of our time inside, especially in the colder months, we become very disconnected from the world around us. Spending time in nature has been shown to improve depression, anxiety, reduce your risk of heart disease and stress.

Supplement with Vitamin D3– One of the things we miss most in winter is seeing the sun! Did you know, that during a Melbourne winter the UVB rays aren’t strong enough to trigger our bodies production of vitamin D. This is because the city falls below a certain latitude. So, unless you are consuming a lot of fatty fish, chances are you will be deficient. We recommend you get your levels tested on a regular basis and supplement with a good quality Vitamin D3.

Keep Moving– It’s easy to get off track with our exercise routine as the days get shorter and colder. However research shows that exercise is an effective mood booster and even helps combat depression. It’s great to try and get outdoors but sometimes the weather does not permit. Try an indoor exercise such as yoga, pilates or swimming in a heated pool
Read the article

Ditch the sugar– Often when it’s cold outside we make poor dietary choices telling ourselves they are “comfort foods” Studies have linked higher consumption of sugar with increased rates of depression. It weakens our immune system and hinders the bodies ability to deal with stress. So get rid of the white stuff and replace it with seasonal, nourishing foods such as broths, soups, veggie bakes and roast dinners. You will feel better for it and so will your waistline.

What are the top things you enjoy doing in winter?

First blog – with some important news!

Time for us to venture into the blogging world as we have a bit to update you on.

It has been 4 weeks since the move from Ignite to Arete Chiropractic, 1339 Burke Rd Kew. Many hours of painting, building and cleaning has resulted in a space that we really love and hope you do to. A big thank you for being so patient and understanding while the move occurred.

clinic reception clinic photo reception clinic photo 2


In some other big news – Chris and Kate have decided to move to New Zealand! 

“We have decided to move to Napier to be closer to Kate’s sister and Chiara’s cousins and to have a better chance at achieving the work/life balance we’ve been trying to find! It’s been a really tough decision for us to make, as well as leaving Chris family behind, we’re also leaving the great relationships we’ve established with you all. We wouldn’t be going anywhere though if we didn’t know with absolute certainty that you’re in great hands with Dr. Chloe. Of course we hope to bump into some of you when we come back to visit friends and family and we expect you to get in touch if you ever decide to visit beautiful Napier! 

We would like to thank you all for your support over the last 2 years and for sharing our passion for what we do. We hope you will continue to look after your health with chiropractic care. ” Chris, Kate and Chiara. 


From all here at Arete, we wish them the very best in their new venture. They have put in many hours of hard work to create a clinic that puts the patient first. The amazing passion they have for Chiropractic and this clinic is something we look forward to continuing.

Chris will finish up on the 9th of June and understandably, changing Chiropractors can be hard. For those that have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to ask.  We are here to help and want to ensure that Chiropractic care remains part of your health plan.

Our hours have become more extensive since the move. Now open Monday to Saturday and online booking is still available. Book online here

Hope you are staying warm,


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