Napa Valley Marketplace Magazine Business Review August 2007.
Giles Family Chiropractic
By Julie Gordon
As a teenager, Kristen Giles enjoyed figure skating, yet she found it gave her headaches and shoulder problems. She tried physical therapy, acupuncture and medicine but nothing seemed to help. When a friend of hers recommended she go to a chiropractor, she finally began to see some results.
“It made a difference where nothing else had,” she explains. Dr. Giles was so impressed with how much chiropractic work helped her that she decided to go to chiropractic school and now runs her own business in Napa with her husband, Dr. Paul Ruscica.
The couple, who operate Giles Family Chiropractic at 2441 Imola Avenue in Napa, spends their days adjusting people’s spines. A spinal adjustment can help people who suffer from a variety of conditions, including carpal tunnel syndrome, back pain, shoulder injuries and knee, ankle and hip problems. It can also help people who have been in car accidents or have fallen off a bike.
“Chiropractic work is non-invasive and you get really quick results,” says Dr. Giles.
To determine whether someone’s spine is functioning normally, Giles Family Chiropractic uses a computerized tool called Insight Millennium that provides a variety of functions.
“The thermography scan will check the balance of your nervous system and the surface EMG checks muscle function and balance. Based on these readings, the computer will display easy-to-read graphs of your particular findings.”
Dr. Giles and Dr. Ruscica have worked with people of all ages. They’ve treated newborns all the way to people in their 90s, she says. In fact, their eight-month-old daughter, Kiera, received a spinal adjustment as soon as she was born.
You don’t need to use as much force when you’re adjusting the spine of someone who is young and don’t need to do it as many times, explains Dr. Giles.
Dr. Giles says one of the rewards of running her business is seeing the positive results in her patients, noticing how their lives and personalities change for the better. “They’re happier when they’re out of pain,” she says. “It actually rewards their entire family.”
Meanwhile, one of the challenges she faces is educating people on the benefits of chiropractic work. “It’s the same as eating organic vegetables. It’s something we should be doing to increase longevity.”
It’s also a challenge to get people to see chiropractic work as more of lifestyle change than a quick fix.
Andrew Davis, president of Napa-based Synergistech Communications, a company that recruits high-tech professionals, has been a Giles Family Chiropractic patient since the spring of 2006. “They’re focused on the education,” he says. “They’ve answered all of my questions and been very detailed in their answers. They’ve been very forthcoming and that has led to my trusting them. I feel like we have owning small businesses in common.”
Davis, who is more than six feet tall, says his long legs have made car and air travel uncomfortable, but thanks to chiropractic work, he’s doing better. His grandfather had spinal problems that were left untreated and he saw the effects of that, he says.
Yountville resident Lisa Pedersen came to Giles Family Chiropractic at the beginning of the year suffering from headaches and now doesn’t have them nearly as often. “They’ve definitely been a life-saver,” she says. “There’s days when no amount of aspirin can do the trick and I’ll go and get an adjustment and be fine. I’ve recommended them to many people who tell me they get headaches or back pain.” Pedersen says she’s even called when she needed an adjustment on a weekend and they’ve opened the doors. “They’re really sweet people.”
Dr. Giles holds a bachelor’s degree in science from the University of Waterloo and Dr. Ruscica holds a bachelor’s degree in biological science from the University of Western Ontario. Dr. Giles also holds a degree in prenatal and pediatric care through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association.
The couple met at Parker College of Chiropractic in Dallas TX. She graduated in 2000 and he a year later, in 2001. They dated while they were in school and then decided to start their practice together. Dr. Ruscica, too, decided he wanted to get into the chiropractic field after he found it helped him overcome allergies and chronic strep throat as a teenager.
Drs. Giles and Ruscica are involved in the local community. Dr. Giles visits local elementary schools and talks to kids about how to carry a backpack correctly while Dr. Ruscica visits local high schools and gives presentations on the nervous system. In addition, Ruscica coaches the Vintage High School cheerleading team. Both are in their 30s and involved with Napa Active 20-30 Club. The couple also donates money each month to the National Vaccine Information Center in Virginia.
They are both members of the Chiropractic Leadership Alliance, The International Chiropractic Pediatric Association and the Napa County Chiropractic Association.
When they’re not in the office, the family who lives in Napa with their dog, Dakota, enjoys exercising, skiing and being outdoors.