EL PASO, Texas - The nationwide flu outbreak continues to claim lives, and as many flock to get flu shots, some are turning to other alternatives to help prevent the flu and speed up the recovery process.
Dr. Marius Ruja, of Alpha and Omega Wellness Center, told ABC-7 he has seen an uptick in patients looking to get "flu adjustments" to help prevent the flu.
"With the lymph system and with the neuro-muscular skeletal system, we help the body calibrate the spine, which is the fiber optics to everything in your body - the communication chain," Ruja said.
Ruja told ABC-7 the stress of recovering from the flu affects your body. "For example, body aches: you're lethargic, you're tired and you don't feel like doing things," Ruja said, "So what the chiropractic adjustment does, it calibrates and aligns your spine so that nervous system works at the highest optimal level."
Dr. Ruja says there are no side effects to chiropractic adjustments, which he said are non-invasive and surprisingly gentle. "It is the release of pressure in the spine, releasing the flow of the nervous system, which is energy that communicates to every cell in the body," he said.
Ruja told ABC-7 every flu adjustment is different, depending on the symptoms. "When we are talking about the flu, we are talking about the whole body. It affects the whole body all the way from fever to body aches to nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration."
Dr. Ruja says he does not believe an adjustment is the answer to everything, but believes it can help compliment the flu shot. He also recommends staying hydrated, in addition to monitoring vitals and your temperature. He says adjustments can be done to help prevent the flu and help speed up the recovery time. "The body aches and pains, instead of being out for weeks, it's only two or three days," he said.
Another alternative is acupuncture. "There's some really good acupuncture in different areas of the body that help boost your immune system," Acupuncturist Adrienne Ortega said.
Ortega is a licensed acupuncturist at Alama Acupuncture. She tells ABC-7 she believes acupuncture can help compliment a flu shot. "Both medicines can actually be really helpful and integrated."
Tiny needles are used at different pressure points on the body. To help treat or prevent the flu, Ortega says needles are used on the head, ears and stomach area. The affects can be felt within 15-20 minutes.
"It's not going to make anything worse. I think people are always wondering, is it going to be helpful? Can it be helpful for headache? Can it be helpful for sleep issues?"