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Want Better Health? Don’t Play Whac-A-Mole With It

By Dr. Molly Casey

The Journey of Health

Health is a journey. It is a process. Society and the world -- as we live in it now -- is full of assaults on that journey of health. There are chemicals in the food, water, and soil, our lives are busier than ever, and stress mounts by the minute. If we want the best possible experience in our body and overall quality of life, that process of health requires that we support the body in its journey.


Have you ever been at an arcade that has the game Whac-A-Mole? It is a game in which there is a waist level platform with a number of holes in it and there is a mallet attached to the platform. Each hole contains plastic moles inside. As the game starts, moles begin to pop up out of the holes and points are earned by the player as they whack the moles back down. As the game proceeds, they pop up faster, more frequently, and sometimes simultaneously. But they never stop coming.

The current mainstream societal approach to “health” is analogous to Whac-A-Mole. Watch any set of commercials on TV and they are full of diagnoses of different conditions (the moles) and the answer to the diagnosis (the mallet) is whatever medication the commercial is promoting. Listen to the warning at the end of the commercial and it often states a very long list of side effects, some of those being the cause of other conditions that would require more medical attention and other medications to address (or whack). And so goes the cycle on and on and on.

The Approach Matters

Health is a journey, a process of choices and decisions that one makes along the way to increase the body’s ability to function optimally while handling the stressors of daily life. Using the Whac-A-Mole technique as the main approach to health is absolutely foolish, exhausting, and wreaks more havoc than helping.

Medications and medical intervention can be an important part of your approach to health when used appropriately. I am not suggesting that medication or intervention are wrong or bad. But utilizing them as one’s main form of support during the journey of health is not a wise idea. In my nearly two decades of chiropractic practice -- and over four decades of life -- I have yet to ever see this approach offer the greatest possible success. In fact, I’ve seen it cause a great deal of harm.

Smart choices, such as utilizing routine chiropractic care, eating healthy, and exercising, provide an approach that may impact your lifestyle but give a higher standard of health with which to enjoy your life.

Daily Choices and Decisions

In my experience, approaching one’s health as a journey of daily choices and decisions that are either supporting what they value or driving them further from what matters most has proven to be the process that reaps the most rewards. Patients who have approached their health in this way present to me with a greater quality of life experience, a body that performs and functions better, and experiences less pain and fewer symptoms. It does not mean the individual will never have any issues.

The body is a living organism that is constantly adapting to ever-changing and new stressors. Things will arise, hiccups will happen. The individuals who experience greater levels of optimal health are the ones who realize that what they do on a daily basis matters to their overall body function, performance, and quality of life.

You will never kill the mole in the game; that’s the point -- they always keep coming. Approaching the journey of health by reacting to a mole here, a condition there, a side effect on that side of the game board, is not promoting health at all. It’s an inherently flawed approach.

By recognizing and owning the personal responsibility you have for your own health and holding yourself accountable, you end the game of Whac-A-Mole and begin supporting the optimal function of your body. Choosing to approach the journey of health as a compilation of daily proactive choices and decisions takes an enormous amount of responsibility, accountability and follow through, but the rewards I’ve experienced and seen are well worth the work.

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