Thursday, December 24, 2015

A Christmas Message

Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays to all!  Déjà vu all over again.  I wrote the following message in 2012.  I just re-read it and can’t believe how it is all the same this year.

"So this is Christmas and what have you done" are some of the immortal words in John Lennon's song, Happy Christmas (War is Over).  It's one of my favorites.

One could likely write an extensive commentary on those words as they relate to our community, society and world.  And that's just the opening line.

The other day, I was partially watching/listening to the t.v. while getting breakfast and preparing to go to the office.  The t.v. show, of course, was all about preparing us for the Christmas "shopping" season.  Alerting viewers to the new have to have products, the best deals, and what's hot.  It's all lights, decorations, Santa Claus and parties.  Between segments the commercials were doing their best to entice with steals and deals. Emphasis was put on the idea that Christmas is all about, merchandise, toys, electronics...yes...stuff!

It gave me pause and I thought..."and so this is Christmas and another New Year", here we go again.
I'll be the first to admit I love the commercial side of Christmas.  I'm a big kid.  I like everything about it, the lights, trees, decorations, food, parties, and presents.  I like receiving presents and giving presents.  I like Santa Claus, his elves, Rudolph, and all the other reindeer.  I like driving around looking at Christmas lights on homes and businesses.  I like hot chocolate, hot cider, cold weather and snow!  There's not much snow in Texas, especially in our area.  In fact, it looks like it will be another hot Christmas.  Its 80 degrees as I write this, but growing up in New Jersey I had plenty of cold and snow.  In fact, some of my fondest memories are walking to the church in the snow to attend midnight mass.  There is a strangely magical and special feeling that you get as you walk in the quiet of the late night enjoying the crispness of the air, and looking at all the homes lit up with their Christmas decorations.  Back then, it seemed as if almost everyone had a nativity scene in their front yard.  The feeling you got was one of true peace and tranquility.

While I enjoy all the fun and commercial parts of Christmas, recognizing it being the perfect time to acknowledge, appreciate, and express in the form of material gifts, it is secondary to the heart, soul and message of Christmas.

As many of you know, I'm blessed to have an extremely diverse group of patients.  I love to hear about everyone's beliefs, rituals, heritage, ancestry, religion and customs.

During a conversation about Christmas and presents, one young patient said they exchange gifts and her cousins put up a tree and decorate.  I said, "but you're Muslim and don't celebrate Christmas".  She replied that the holidays are fun and they like the presents.  So, of course, being the sarcastic person I am, but in a nice way, I said, "If it's all about presents then why not celebrate Hanukkah that way you can get eight days of presents!" Well, we had fun talking about it.  But it caused me to realize there are many people that celebrate the commercial Christmas and the holiday season because for them it's all about Santa Claus and gifts.

The Santa Claus we know and love today is a modernized, commercialized adaptation of the original Saint Nicholas-a real person and a Bishop in the early church.  He believed in and practiced Christ's teachings that we help those in need.   Today, Christmas is more about those in want!
Christians have to navigate the mine field of Christmas, reminding others and ourselves of the history of Christmas, the truth of Christmas, and the reason we celebrate.  Christ, Jesus was born!
I am saddened that we need to commonly justify or clarify the intent of Christmas by saying such things as "the real reason for the season" or the "true meaning of Christmas" or "put Christ back in Christmas".  I guess we are compelled to do this because society as a whole has diverged so far from the truth.

Merry, are those who sell consumables in a country that zealously worships consumerism as their form of religion.  The message of Christian religion-the message of Christmas is virtually being overshadowed, diluted and paved over by the message of consumerism-buy, buy, buy!

The message of Christmas is of a love so powerful that God presented humanity with the greatest gift ever given.  It is a continuous everlasting gift that in my mind comes in three parts. The first is the miraculous birth of a baby, the Son of God, made human, named Jesus.  The second part of the gift unfolds and is revealed as this baby becomes a man who lives amongst us and teaches us daily through his words and actions about the kingdom of God.  Last is the ultimate gift, some 35 years later when the gift is fully manifested in the ultimate sacrifice-the crucifixion of our Lord, Jesus.

Of course, I realize that not all people share the belief that Jesus is the Son of God.  For some He is simply a historical figure and others don't believe there is even a God.  There are many religions and belief systems.  Everyone's entitled to their beliefs.  I can honor and respect them.  But if one is to celebrate Christmas, they should be at least aware, appreciative of, and respectful of the truth of Christmas.  It is the joyous celebration of the coming of the Lord, Jesus Christ into our lives.  He came to love, cherish, teach…and eventually die for us.  Now that is a spectacular gift!

God's gift connects us so intimately with Him in a very obvious human way.  It serves as a supreme example-a sort of gift of all gifts.  What larger expression of love can be demonstrated than the gift of a life...a Son?

We should be encouraged and even inspired by God's example to find ways of giving part of ourselves to others who can benefit by what we have to offer.  Our love is free and our time, expertise and talents can be given as gifts.

Understandably, the joy of Christmas that many experience can also be an extreme burden and time of sorrow for others who are suffering from their own problems or from the loss of family. There are people in great need, physically...emotionally.  Perhaps there is some gift that you can give to one of them.  Something you've created or built with your hands-something that has a piece of your heart and soul.

Perhaps it's the gift of visiting the elderly, and sitting quietly as you listen to their stories.  Find someone to connect with this season, in a human way.  You'll not only be blessing someone else's life, but giving an everlasting gift to yourself.

"So this is Christmas and what have you done.
Another year over and a new one just begun...
And so this is Christmas, I hope you had fun.
A very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Let's hope it's a good one without any fear."

I wish blessings upon each and every one of you, your friends and family during this Christmas season and each and every day.  May peace and freedom be yours with health and prosperity following you all the days of your life.

“To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary.  To one without faith, no explanation is possible.” Thomas Aquinas (c. 1224-1274) Philosopher and theologian

Merry Christmas to all who believe and happy holidays to all who believe differently.

Blessings for a beautiful Christmas and New Year,

Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S.  To find people in need simply inquire  with your church, synagogue, The Salvation Army, The American Red Cross, nursing facilities, local service organizations such as The Rotary Foundation, Kiwanis International, Lion's Club or your neighbors.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Halt Holiday Heartburn

With the holidays comes a variety of foods, spices, drinks, parties, late night feasts, over-indulging and basic binge eating.  You’re off your normal routine and all of that spells potential problems from your mouth to your gut.

All of which can be unbearable and just no fun.

But what can you do if you suffer from heartburn and digestive disorders?

Big Pharma and their advertisers and many doctors will tell you to take antacids, H2 blockers or proton pump inhibitors.  All in the effort to trick your body into telling you it’s okay to eat the quantity and variety of foods that perhaps you shouldn’t be eating.  Not only do antacids, H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors sound scary…they are!  They are designed to neutralize stomach acid or block production of acid or deactivate the pumps in the stomach lining producing acid.

This fiddling around with the design of the body, the chemistry and the plumbing is not a good thing.  People need to learn not to tinker with a perfect system.

But you want to eat, indulge, party…I understand.

But what if there was a better way?

A safer way?

Would you want it?

Many would answer a resounding-YES.

The logical way to eat all you want when you want is to identify which foods your body absolutely can’t tolerate.

I’m sorry to say, some of our bodies are sensitive and intolerant to certain foods just as some people can’t handle mold, cats, tree pollen, etc.

Wouldn’t it be wise to determine what your body likes or doesn’t like and stop beating it up by giving it foods it can’t tolerate?  And then punishing it more by throwing off the body chemistry with antacids, H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors.

But of course!

Your taste buds may enjoy a plethora of foods that the rest of your body can’t tolerate.

How do you determine the difference?

Well, you can do a food elimination diet.  But it’s very difficult because you eat one food for four days then rotate that out and eat another food for four days, etc., etc. until you find the foods that your body reacts to.

Or you can simply have an inexpensive blood test performed called the ELISA test which identifies which foods you are sensitive to.  In other words, which foods your body hates or which foods hate your body.  Sensitivities can manifest in reactions up to three days after eating the offending food.  This is different than an allergy which lets you know within eight hours.

In any case, the test is accurate and will provide you with valuable information to get some answers.

Yes, we do the test.  We’ve helped our patients for about twenty years with it.  It is life changing.

Call us if you would like more information or to have the test done.

Okay, what else?

Digestive Enzymes and Probiotics
Those little miracle workers not only give relief but help the body to heal.
Caution, Buyer Beware:  Not all enzymes and probiotics are equal.  In fact, most products in retail stores and online are low quality. 

We only use the highest quality products, approved by research and doctors and only sold to doctors for maximum control benefit and efficacy.

TPP Gastro: nutritional digestive supplement for heartburn and discomfort in the GI tract. 
This comprehensive formulation of herbs, vitamins, antioxidants, and enzymes is designed to soothe GI discomfort and heal damaged mucosa.  It is excellent support for digestive disorders such as gastric reflux, ulcers, gastritis, and IBS.
Clinic applications:
  •   Heartburn
  •    Indigestion
  •  GERD (acid reflux)
  •  Gastritis
  •  Esophagitis
  •  Diarrhea
  •  Lactation* (herbs promote milk production)
  •    Excess mucous production

GastroZyme: the first choice for sensitive patients, this product is well tolerated and works fast to relieve discomfort.  It may be used in place of over-the-counter anti-acids.  Good for discomfort “below the navel”.
Clinic applications:
  •  First choice for chronic diarrhea and extremely sensitive GI tracts
  • Inflammation of the upper and lower GI tract
  • Inflammation and discomfort associated with UTI
  •  Excess mucous production, allergies, colds, asthma, and sinus congestion

TPP Probiotic: this is a blend of six bacteria common to the human GI tract.  This product has been formulated to mirror the proper ratios of these bacteria as found in the healthy GI tract and therefore maintain optimal flora to reduce gastrointestinal discomfort.
Proven benefits:
Comprehensive probiotic formula includes over 5 billion cfu per capsule from 6 different probiotic sources.
GI stable and heat stable microorganisms chosen for their safety and effectiveness to mirror the ratios found in a healthy system.
Jerusalem artichoke is a prebiotic plant fiber that supplies nourishment for good bacteria*.
Lactoferrin is a multifunctional protein known for its ability to support immune system health*.
Supports relief from occasional GI discomfort, reduces problems associated with lactose intolerance, and encourages timely elimination*.
Clinical applications:
  • Prevention and wellness
  • Dysbiosis-absence or imbalance of good bacteria
  • Gas/Intestinal bloating
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases
  • Constipation
  • Frequent antibiotic use
  • Weakened immunity
  • Diarrhea
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Viral/bacterial infection

Please remember-any time you introduce foreign substances like medication to the body, you alter its ability to function properly, and risk possible side effects.

I highly recommend the food sensitivity test.  But if the timing isn’t right, at least start with some high quality digestive enzymes and probiotics (we have several available that will serve you well).

Your body will appreciate it, you will enjoy the holidays more and you will be healthier for it.

Blessings for a wonderful Holiday Season as well as a spectacular New Year!

Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S.  I still hope to be the chiropractor you wish you had in the family!

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

I Am Thankful For You!

Just wanted to let you know that my staff and I are very thankful and appreciative of you!  We just completed our 19th annual food drive and it was a huge success.  Needy families in Fort Bend will be enjoying a lovely Thanksgiving Day meal because of so many of our gracious patients.

Having recently returned from a medical mission in Guatemala, it’s very easy for me to be reminded of even the smallest item to be very thankful for…clothing, water, a home, work, indoor plumbing, plenty to eat, paper, a pen, access to healthcare, all the basics, and then, of course, the luxuries.  Any one of us could spend days writing down each item and every person in our life we are thankful for.
Perhaps a good family exercise this holiday season would be to spend some time with the family making a list of all that you have to be thankful for.  It will be an eye opener.
Though there are many who are joyous during Thanksgiving and Christmas, there are many who are suffering.  Pray for those who are suffering from the pain of ill health or the loss of family.  Hold your family and friends close during these holidays.  Each day is a blessing.  Be grateful. 
Blessings to you and yours.
Thank you.
Dr. Rick Barrett

Thursday, October 15, 2015

The Pope and I

Love, peace, charity. 

Caring for the disenfranchised, the poor and the weak among us is the message Pope Francis shared with the world entire on his historic visit to the U.S.  This is the message Francis has lived and shared with people throughout his life.

The United States is the most generous and giving country in the world; a country whose citizens donate more time, energy and dollars to those in need than anyone else.

Pope Francis has seen what America stands for.  That we, as a nation, comprised of many races, religions, and ethnicities are united in a spirit of generosity and compassion, working together to care for our fellow man, improve the human condition, elevate all people, defend freedom and act to improve the lives of people throughout the world.

This is not the experience he had living in Argentina I’m sure.

Pope Francis has challenged Catholics in previous writings to become involved in the mission of serving.  He said that we should go out to where the people are and come back tired, dirty and smelling like sheep.

I realize not everyone is ready or willing to smell like sheep, but there are those of us who derive some strange pleasure from getting dirty and smelly, travelling long distances to remote areas, overworking, sleeping little and in uncomfortable places, fighting mosquitos, enduring harsh weather,…(pouring rain, heat, humidity, or cold) horrible bathroom and bathing facilities, eating differently, becoming sick, and more… to serve those who need medical attention.

I am one of those people and associate with quite a few who feel the same.  We have been living Pope Francis’ challenges for many years.  Our team’s members represent Catholics and many other religions, as well as a few non-believers.  They, too, have wonderfully generous hearts open to helping their fellow man.  Two thousand fifteen marks my 20th year participating with medical missions; about forty to date.  Obviously, the number isn’t significant, just interesting to reflect on because it calls to mind that our doctors and support personnel have touched and impacted an extraordinary amount of lives.  Based on the number of patients per trip, I estimate we have treated approximately 60,000 people!  That’s staggering to contemplate.  Our teams have travelled to Mexico, Costa Rica, Colombia, Peru, Honduras, Bolivia and Nicaragua.

Next week, our team (St. Francis Medical Mission) will be travelling once again to Guatemala.  This will be my fourth trip there, but I eagerly anticipate this mission as we will serve the indigenous of a different region.  It involves a four to five hour bus ride and another hour or so boat trip up the Rio Dulce.

I know many of you have valid concerns about our safety, but honestly, the only thing I worry about are the “dang” mosquitos carrying malaria, dengue and chikungunya.  Mosquitos, unfortunately, love me.
As always, I appreciate all prayers.  It is not reciprocal, but as Pope Francis said, if you are a non-believer, just wish me well. 

I thank you all in advance for the love, support, prayers and financial donations.  You have always been there for the team and me.

Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S.  Mary has been working on upgrading our mission website.  Please check it out.  Any suggestions are welcome.
Also, if you care to donate, please:
-send me a check
-use the donation box at the office
-go directly to the website
-or, if you want me to personally find families or individuals with specific needs while in the country of Guatemala, send me a check or use the donation box in the office and I will gladly see that your donation is used appropriately.

Lastly, I have a few items in my office to use as silent auction items for donations.  Please come by, take a look and bid on them.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Tips For Those Who Drive

“It Won’t Happen To Me…”

…are the words we all have said or thought at some point in our life.  Often, we are wrong.  Though “it” may not happen to us, it still could. We are all susceptible to chance, luck of the draw, and so many circumstances just out of our control.  Life is not like the reality show, “Survivor”…none of us hold special immunity protecting us differently than that of another person.

One example of “it won’t happen to me thinking” are ACCIDENTS, in particular, vehicular accidents.  I know you don’t think it applies to you, perhaps not at this moment and hopefully never, but then again you just don’t know.  So don’t let this message be like other times in your life when you’ve thrown something away, and then found you could have used it after it’s been discarded.

Intellectually, you know all the reasons that during your driving lifetime, you may be involved in a motor vehicle collision.  Such as you are at risk the more hours you spend on the road.  Traffic conditions and weather play a part, inexperienced, and inattentive drivers, eating in the car, putting on makeup, using cell phones, road hazards, construction and much, much more.  You get it.  Driving is like walking in a mine field.  We spend a huge amount of time driving or being driven.  You need to be prepared should the unexpected happen.

I’d like to share some tips should you or a loved one should ever be involved in a motor vehicle collision. Obviously, I’m not an attorney, so I’m not doling out legal advice only some tips from experience.  I have an attorney in my family, a good friend who is an attorney and several patients who are attorneys.  I also have patients who are in law enforcement.  I have patients who are insurance adjusters and you know I’ve treated thousands of patients over twenty plus years who have been in accidents.  People forget this sometimes because I have a wellness practice, but I do treat trauma.  Therefore, I want you to learn from this collective body of knowledge.   I’m an old Eagle Scout (getting older every second).  I believe in being prepared.  You may not need this information now, but you might in the future or it may benefit a friend or loved one.  Or even you in the future.  (I pray not.)

I am about to share some secrets that your well-meaning medical doctor may not know and insurance companies definitely don’t want you to know and could possible hide from you.  These secrets are important even if you’ve just been in a “fender bender”.  Also, I’ve created a special card for you to keep in your vehicle with some facts and steps to take should you have an accident.

It’s FREE for you!  Just come by my office and pick up a few.  I have plenty.  A sample can be viewed at the end of this report.

I have found most people to be God loving, family oriented, work like crazy to feed and care for their family folk, who don’t want to take advantage of anyone (including insurance companies).  All they want is their vehicle fixed or replaced, their injuries healed and to get back to their lives after an accident!

Unfortunately, it’s usually not that simple.  There’s more involved and the last thing you need or want is to have residual health problems down the road.  You can always buy a new car, but you are living in your body forever.  So you better repair it the best way possible, as fast as possible!  While it may be inconvenient to undertake treatment because it takes time out of your busy schedule…your future depends on it.  Do you want to set aside time now or be robbed of it in the future?

I urge you to seek help with any symptoms you may have, however minor they may seem.  Don’t have obvious symptoms?  Still get checked!  Many symptoms can “show up” further down the road after you’ve closed the case with the insurance company.  During a thorough examination, signs or symptoms can be elicited by the doctor that you may not have noticed.  Remember the doctor will look for less than obvious problems and will likely want to take x-rays to check for internal spinal problems.

Thinking you’ll get better on your own or with some pain medications can be a big mistake and won’t heal the biomechanical (musculoskeletal) and neurological damage that occurs to our bodies when they’ve been traumatized.  I’m sure your medical doctor is caring and proficient however, he or she is ill prepared to treat you through a soft tissue recovery process.  They can give you meds and send you on your way, but they can’t actively treat you.  You need a doctor trained in these types of traumas to care for the body and layers of damage sustained by the spinal nerves, muscle, tendons, ligaments and joints.  Frankly, you need a chiropractor.  One that can co-manage your recovery (healing) with other medical professionals who specialize in trauma when or if needed.  Some people do need additional testing such as MRIs or nerve tests.  Others may even need pain management injections in conjunction with receiving chiropractic and physical therapy treatment.

Obviously, if you live locally, I’ll be happy to help should the unexpected happen to you.  But if not, please find a chiropractor to assist in your recovery.

Some facts to consider:
1)      Although the “rear-ender” type of accident represents only 20% of motor vehicle accidents, it causes over 80% of injuries giving long-term and persistent symptoms. [i] [ii]
2)      A surprised accident victim does not have a chance to brace for impact which can result in more serious injury to the spine and nervous system. [iii]
3)      An older accident victim will generally suffer a more serious injury because of decreased elasticity, dramatic loss of flexibility and strength, and slowing of the natural healing rate. [iv]
4)      In general, a woman’s lighter musculature means that she will have a higher incident of injury. [v]
5)      In a typical collision, having the head turned to one side such as when talking to another passenger, can dramatically increase the amount of neck injury. [vi]

Several myths associated with whiplash injuries are:
1)      If you’re hit from behind at low speed, you won’t be injured. 
2)      The more damage to your vehicle, the more severe your injuries. 
3)      If you’re injured, the injuries will completely heal within one to three months.

Here’s an exercise for you:

Make a list of all those things you enjoy, want to do now and in the future.  Maybe it’s… play golf, lift the kids and grandkids, ride bikes, play sports,  boat, fishing, or simply sit comfortably watching movies, tennis matches, or at a concert.

Now envision your life without these things or trying to do them with neck or back pain, headaches, weakness, numbness and tingling in the limbs…that’s not much fun is it?  In fact, it’s miserable.

Here is one critical tip worth its weight in gold that you must act on now.  Yes, even if you have not had an accident.  Please call your insurance agent and verify that you have personal injury protection (aka, PIP) on your policy.  If you don’t have it, have your agent add it immediately.  PIP in Texas is voluntary and has three coverage amounts—$2,500, $5,000 and $10,000.  This pays for your medical bills, so you don’t have to pull money out of your pocket for doctor’s visits.  There’s all kinds of scenarios where this is important such as being hit by an uninsured motorist (in Texas, this is real likely), or being in a hit and run.

Suppose you needed diagnostic testing such as an MRI?  That could cost $1500.    So you can see that medical bills can escalate quickly.  It’s better to be prepared with adequate coverage.

Just a short note on attorneys; this is a hot topic for many people and I don’t want to offend anyone, hurt feelings or be disrespectful.   Like anything else in life, there are good and bad in all professions.  There are good attorneys and not so good attorneys.  I’ve seen patients use attorneys that have done great jobs for them, effectively handling their case to the satisfaction of all.  But, I’ve also seen cases where my patient really gets jammed up financially thinking they were being taken care of only to have the attorney dump them, or foul up their case in court.  I was once involved in a case for my patient where I was called as an expert witness.  During the trial, the judge reprimanded the attorney (of my patient) multiple times in court for things he did or didn’t do that was harming his client’s case!  

A good attorney can be very helpful, worth having, and likely you’ll never have to go to court.  A bad attorney can really ruin your case and create unnecessary stress in your life.

Interestingly, the insurance companies know who they can push around and who they can’t.  They have lists!

Just recently one of my patients of many years had an accident on the loop 610.  She was shaken up, but she remembered the bright red postcard I had given her and used the information on the card.  She was happy she had it.  Fortunately, she didn’t need any care other than a couple of days of treatment with me, nor did she need an attorney.  All worked out well for her.

It can happen to you. 
Be prepared.
Know what to do. 
Be informed. 
See your chiropractor. 
Seek good legal counsel.
(A good attorney will tell when you don’t need legal representation.)
Have adequate personal injury protection.

Please don’t sign up for a life of chronic pain and diminishing health simply because you “thought you’d be fine”, there was minimal car damage, or you didn’t want to take the time up front to treat your body.

I am at your service and hope to be the chiropractor you wish you had in your family.


Dr. Rick Barrett

[i] Incidence and Duration of Neck Pain Among Patients Injured in a Car Accident, Deans GT (16986), Br. Medical Journal, 292:94-95

[ii] The Whiplash Syndrome, Mcnab, I, (1971) Orthopedic Clin North Am 2 (389-403).

[iii] Controlled Automobile Rear-End Collisions, An Investigation of Related Engineering and Mechanical Phenomena.  Severy, DM, Mathewson, JH, Bechtol, CO, Canadian Services Medical Journal, 11:727-758.

Neck Strain in Car Occupants: Injury Status After Six Months and Crash Related Factors, Emol and Horeguchi, Ryan, G.A., et al, Sept., 1994 pages 533-537.

[iv] Effect of Age and Loading Rate on Human Cervical Spine Injury Threshold, Pintar, F.A., Yoganandan, N., Voo, L., Spine, Sept. 1998, Vol.23 (18), pp 1957-62.

[v] Ibid.

[vi] Turek Orthopedics Principles and their Applications, Lippincott, 1977, p. 740, Stuzenegger, et al., 1977, p 740.

Monday, June 1, 2015

About Your Donations and Prayers...

Our medical mission team was highly successful this year once again in part because of your support.
Thank you!
Yes, as usual I did most of the work while everyone else took siestas most of the time!
Okay…the truth…We had forty-four extremely hard working team members;
Translators (Spanish and Cabecar)
Support and logistics
We worked in wet weather due to the start of the rainy season in Costa Rica.  By the end of the week, we were wet, exhausted, muddy and somewhat beat up!  We looked forward to returning home to some sunshine. 
Fat chance!  It’s worse here than in Costa Rica!
I’m sick of the rain…I know you are too.  I pray none of you have had flooded homes. 
With the cash donations collected at my office we were able to select some extremely deserving Cabecar Indians to help.  The money was able to purchase bags of beans, rice and sugar.  Approximately thirty-five little care packages were made and then distributed based on questions we asked.  They were all deserving.  Many had walked with kids in tow through the mountains, in the rain, same with horses and walking eight to twelve hours!  Twelve was the longest time I knew of by inquiring of one of my patients.
One Cabecar woman traveled with her six year old daughter for hours on foot from deep in the reserve to our clinic site.  They had nothing but a little bag of clothing.  The little girl had been suffering from cardiac and respiratory issues for several years.  The mother told us that when they were able to see doctors, they weren’t of much help.  We don’t know why, but somehow the six year old girl had two surgeries and needed a third!  She was very eager to see our pediatrician for help and counsel.  They were given a hot meal to eat and the care package from you.
Another Cabecar woman traveled with a one week old baby by foot with nothing for twelve hours to see our doctors.  They stayed in the hostel on church grounds the night before clinic started—a simple structure with wooden benches, a basic shelter to stay out of the elements.  There are no comforts though it has an outdoor stove.  If they have food, they can cook.  Pots and some utensils are there for their use.  Apparently, all respect it and leave it for others to use.  After waiting to be seen by the various doctors and dentists, they finished around 2 p.m. and began their long trek home.
The hostel can accommodate quite a few families at a time.  We met four to five of them.  Some bring chickens to slaughter for food, others just some rice or whatever they have at the time. 
I hope this provided a little view of our mission and the people who were helped.
Quite humbling really.
Can you imagine working outdoors and living in less than desirable accommodations everyday with the rain we are experiencing?
It sheds a different light on what we think of our own problems with or without the rain.
Thanks again for your personal contributions.  If you’d like to see a few pictures, go to

Dr. Rick Barrett
P.S.  I reprinted photos from last year’s mission, hung them up for the people to see and take if they or someone they knew was in it.  It was a simple thing that brought big smiles and tremendous happiness to all who saw them.  (Another thing we take for granted…photos!)

Friday, February 13, 2015

Marilyn Monroe and I at the Hampton Inn

...But it's not what you think. Our Tri City Business Alliance pulled off a successful fundraiser supporting the Habitat for Humanity in Fort Bend. It was held at the Hampton Inn located in Missouri City.  The final numbers aren't in yet, but it looks like we raised about $10,000! It was a fun time with lots of silent auction items. Marilyn looked beautiful and sang a few of her classics. Thanks to all who supported our event!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Room to Grow

Now… (If you haven’t already done it), is a good time to purge and start fresh.

We all do it…accumulate “things’, “stuff”, useless out of date items.  Those things we save and hang on to because…we may use it someday.

This accumulation is true for our emotions, people, habits, and beliefs, too.  Now is the time to take a deep, thoughtful look at one’s life and surroundings and start anew.  I’m in that process now.

I've been a bit overwhelmed this past year (2014) with, let’s call it “life circumstances”.  It was my lost year.  It chewed up my time, energy, emotions, money, etc.
I want to thank all my patients, staff, friends and family that made it better and helped us through 2014.  I am truly grateful.  Now it’s time to break into 2015 and make it a stellar year!

A lifetime of collecting “things” is a bit overwhelming.  Especially when the collection includes over 25 years of chiropractic, nutrition and health information (articles, magazines, books, cassettes, video tapes, DVDs, CDs and more)

Oh yes, I still have the lighted 18 foot chiropractic sign from my previous office that couldn’t be used on my new building.  Anyone want it?

Right now, I’m purging many things…mostly paper.  It’s got to go.  But I’m also discarding and clearing out bad or useless habits, negative beliefs, and yes, even people that aren’t uplifting, or are false in their behavior or actions, or don’t share the same values.
Basically, anything that doesn't serve me or my family in the positive and healthy course I want to pursue in my life.

Clutter in our lives, whether it be an overloaded closet, junk drawers, boxes in the garage, emotional, mental baggage or people will only serve to waste our precious time and block goodness and abundance from entering our lives that bring ultimate happiness and fulfillment.

I am privileged to have contact with a large group of people in my practice and it’s always fascinating at the beginning of a new year to hear their many goals and feelings about the new year ahead.

One patient chooses a word at the start of each year.  Last year it was courage.  This year it’s open.

I love the idea of doing this.  No elaborate resolutions to possibly fail at.  Just one simple word.  Open is a wonderful word with magnificent possibilities.  Open to change, open to new ideas, open to learn, open to people in her life, open to endless possibilities for growth and happiness.

Often times in life one chapter must end for a new one to begin.  Being open to the idea of cleaning out old unused, outdated physical and emotional clutter, letting go of our death grip on these things allows us to be like an innocent child at Christmas awaiting the return of Santa Claus with new, fresh, clean, exciting gifts.  Open to the wonder of it all and knowing absolutely that good things are coming.

I am in that process of discarding and being—open.

While cleaning out files at the office, I came upon some special notes and cards that patients have given me over many years.  Yes, I’ve kept them all.  Now it’s time to let go of them.  Physically, but never emotionally.  They are very special to me and remain in my heart…always.

Here’s one I’d like to share…

Dear Dr. Barrett,

Thank you for being so helpful, considerate and kind.  You have made my life so much better in the last 3 months of receiving your treatments-and I know the people you have just helped on your recent mission have been blessed because of your care for others.
Happy Thanksgiving to you, your staff and all of your patients.  And thank you for sharing and spreading happiness and good health.

Thank you-God Bless.



And here’s another…

Dear Dr. Barrett,

While waiting for inspiration to write on this card, I happened to notice the book, “Heart Tales”, and read it.  It occurred to me that the most gratifying work for an adult is that which emanates from the joyous child’s heart which we all retain.  It appears to me that your business, your patient work flows from that perfect place of a child’s heart and love.
Bless you and your employees, patients and their families.


I am truly grateful for those and many other notes and verbal compliments my staff and I have received over the years.  My patients have been a wonderful blessing in my life, allowing me to participate in caring for them.  Certainly, I have not had the ability to provide pain relief and healing to everyone’s satisfaction.  Only God can do that one.  But God has allowed me to be successful in the majority of patients I see.

I thank all patients for the opportunity to be your chiropractor and nutritional advisor.  I will continually strive to do the best job I can for you, and those whom you refer to me.

I am open
…to any suggestions on improving my service to you as we go into 2015.

Blessings for great health,

Dr. Rick Barrett