Is Your Medication Making You Ill?

health living advice from our southend chiropractorPrescription drugs have many side effects and at Cliffs Chiropractic we know that medication from your GP or consultant can save your life or improve it, but it can also come with unwanted side effects. It’s important to remember that drugs are not necessarily safe and to be aware of the side-effects.

Your medical history is important to us and we need to know all the medication you are taking. Make sure you let your chiropractor know about the drugs you are on – read on to find out how we can help you.

Record numbers of people are suffering or dying as a result of prescription drug side effects. All medications, both over-the-counter and prescription, have some kind of undesirable and sometimes dangerous after effects, from muscle aches to death.

Prescription pills are Britain’s third biggest killer with psychiatric drugs reckoned to be the third biggest killer after heart disease and cancer. For instance, antipsychotics, commonly given to dementia patients to keep them quiet, raise the risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Psychiatric drugs also make falls more likely, and breaking a hip can shorten life significantly, while some antidepressants are linked to a potentially deadly irregular heartbeat. More than one million people in the UK are addicted to sleeping pills and anti-anxiety drugs, according to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Involuntary Tranquiliser Addiction, even though for years official advice has been to not prescribe them for longer than four weeks.

At Cliffs Chiropractic we have recently had a big increase in patients suffering from the side effects of their drugs, they had symptoms such as heart arrhythmia, gastric reflux, nausea, headaches and they were all being given further drugs and even a pacemaker to cover up the symptoms.

The answer is not to stop taking your drugs, they may be very necessary. However, if you are experiencing symptoms do look up yourself if they could be a side effect of a drug you are taking. Read the leaflet that comes in the packet or Google it. GP’s are busy people and cannot remember the side effects of all drugs so take control yourself. Go and ask your GP and remind him about the possible effects of what you are taking.

Ask your chiropractor for advice he will be able to guide you and help you with a natural solution to the side effect. There are plenty of natural alternatives that are safe and may help relieve your symptoms.

Possibly the most common side effects of any prescription drug are gastric issues, such as nausea, constipation and diarrhoea, because most drugs go through the digestive system to be absorbed. Other common after effects include drowsiness, pain, dizziness and skin reactions.

There may be a simple solution such as always eating with your medication or sipping chamomile tea afterwards or taking a ginger capsule for nausea. Other solutions could include drinking more water to stay hydrated, eating more often and smaller meals.

Melanie Soomro says, “As a Medical Herbalist I can successfully treat many of these conditions naturally and my aim is always to reduce prescription drugs as much as possible (in conjunction with your GP). As the liver is the centre of detoxification for the body including dealing with the end products of drugs often a simple liver cleanse can do away with the side effects of these drugs. It is our aim to help the body function at its optimum and with the right herbs, supplements and lifestyle advice we can minimise the use of drugs”

If you would like advice please talk to Arif or Paz at your next appointment or book an appointment to see Melanie for an assessment and get your body functioning optimally.


Melanie’s In the News!

medical herbalism advice from cliffs chiropractor southendThe media spotlight has once again been shining on Cliffs and this time it’s our very own Melanie who has taken the starring role! The East Anglian Daily Times recently ran a two page interview with Melanie, all about the benefits of herbal medicine. It really is worth a read, even if we say so ourselves!

As a medicinal herbalist, Melanie has extensive experience in using herbs and plants to treat a wide variety of patients with a diversity of medical conditions. In Melanie’s words, the aim of herbal treatment is to “restore the body’s natural ability to protect, regulate and heal itself.” And Melanie highlights the effects of this restoration through a personal case study she shares in the article. The real life example explains how a 16-year old girl, who had suffered from debilitating and “incurable” stomach problems for years, is now experiencing a significant reduction in symptoms since seeking Melanie’s help. Melanie hopes that increased awareness of herbal medicine will encourage more people to see it as a primary treatment option.

A Qualified Medical Herbalist has a BSc or equivalent in Herbal Medicine, has studied orthodox medicine as well as plant medicine and is trained in the same diagnostic skills as a GP. Herbalists, however, take a holistic approach to illness, which means they treat the underlying cause of disease, rather than symptoms alone.  Medical Herbalists are able to prescribe herbal remedies to be used alongside other medications. Many patients are often referred to Herbalists by their GPs.

A big “well done” to Melanie from all your colleagues at Cliffs Chiropractic!

You can read the full article here: Can herbal medicine help us keep well


Achoo! Hay fever bothering you? Try this Herbal remedy suggested by Melanie at Cliffs Chiropractor Southend

Achoo! Hay fever bothering you? Then you are not alone!

Hay fever has become more common worldwide than ever before, particularly among children and young adults. Among all ages, one in five people now gets hay fever. There are many natural remedies but here are my (Melanie’s) top tips.

All of these are best started before symptoms start.

1. Eating local honey has a reputation for desensitising the body to local pollen. Although there is no scientific evidence this works people have sworn by this remedy for many years. Make sure it is local and unprocessed.
2. Make a tea from the following herbs. A small handful steeped in boiling water for a few minutes and sipped regularly will help.
a. Lemon balm, chamomile, nettles or feverfew all have anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory properties.
b. Elderflower tones the lining of the nose and helps desensitise it to allergens.
3. Take immune stimulants such as Echinacea or Siberian ginseng.
4. Take a supplement of vitamin C with bioflavonoids. These can prevent the formation of histamine. Foods rich in the bioflavonoid quercetin include onions, garlic and cayenne peppers. The recommended dose for vitamin C is 2,000-3,000mg per day in divided doses.
5. Omega 3 fatty acids can ease allergic symptoms. Flaxseed oil and fish oils taken as capsules daily are the best way to ensure an adequate intake.
6. Inhaling peppermint oil may help you breathe more easily.
7. Cutting out cows’ milk products is often helpful. These are mucous forming in the body.
8. Finally here is a simple home remedy for alleviating the symptoms.

Salt Wash
Make a solution by adding half a teaspoon of salt to a quarter litre of warm water. You can also make a herbal tea and add the salt to that. The best ones would be those in point 2 above. Put the solution into an eyedropper or syringe. To use turn your head to one side and lower it over the sink. Keeping your forehead slightly higher than your chin, gently pour the solution into your upper nostril. The solution will drain out of your other nostril. Some of it may run down your throat so don’t breathe whilst you are doing this. This form of irrigation helps flush out pollens and thins the mucous making it easier to expel.

Melanie focuses on taking a holistic approach to all her patients and can combine chiropractic, medical acupuncture and herbalism if patients so wish.

Why not make an appointment with Melanie to find out if she can get you back up and running as soon as possible. You can contact us at Cliffs Chiropractor Southend on 01702 430430.

Herbal Medicine can improve Eczema shares Melanie at Cliffs Chiropractor Southend

image1Eczema is a common skin problem that Melanie, as a Medical Herbalist, helps patients with. Recently, Melanie, using herbal medicine, helped a Gill Scales, a patient with Eczema on her hands and the improvement in just one week can be seen in these photos. The patient did complain about the taste of it but it’s a small price to pay!
















Eczema is an internal problem not simply an external irritation. The skin is a route of elimination and when the other pathways such as the bowels and kidneys or immunity may be lowered the skin is put under pressure and can become inflamed, itchy, red and sore.

Our skin is a mirror of our health and is used by Melanie as a Medical Herbalist as a useful diagnostic tool reflecting the effects of the outer environment as well as the condition of your inner state, physical and emotional. When we are healthy our skin glows; when unwell, it may look more sallow. Rashes and eczema maybe related to outside allergens, pollutants and chemicals but they are also associated with emotional problems, poor diet, anxiety or often an over stressed digestive system. The health of your gut can often be seen in your skin.

Making your own infused oil is easy and good to have on hand for many minor injuries and illnesses.

herbal medicine at cliffs chiropractor southendHow to make your own infused oil.

Simply combine the herbs chosen for the condition they’ll treat and in a heavy non-reactive saucepan. Cover them with extra virgin olive oil and heat on the lowest possible setting for 30 minutes. Then pour the oil and plant matter into a jar that seals tightly and steep for two weeks, shaking daily. Strain the oil and put into clean jars and label them clearly.

herbal medicine at cliffs chiropractor southendPossible herbs:

  • Calendula flowers for mild burns, sore skin, wounds, and eczema.
  • Chamomile flowers for inflamed skin and wound healing.
  • Capsicum for osteoarthritis- use sparingly with caution.
  • Rosemary for rheumatism and osteoarthritis.
  • Lavender for wounds, sores and ulcers, minimizes scaring and is anti septic and anti-inflammatory.