Tag Archives for " neck pain "

4 Tips Chiropractic Patients Can Use While Working At A Desk

There are dangers in everyday life, from slipping in the shower to getting mowed down by the next door neighbor’s teenage driver. The risk doesn’t end once we are safely behind our desks, because… sitting is killing us!

Seriously, while not really trying to commit murder, our computer, desk, office chair and keyboard are not our friends. We spend hours each day sitting, typing, staring at the computer screen, and this inactivity is wreaking havoc on our health in a variety of ways. article-016-ergonomics

First, most of us sit incorrectly

Goldilocks knew what she was doing when it came to carefully selecting the right chair. Most of us cause excess stress and pressure on our neck, shoulders, and back from the way we sit in our inadequate office chairs.

According to OSHA, a person who spends time at their computer needs to choose an adjustable chair that supports the back, buttocks, legs and arms. Be mindful of your posture throughout the day as well. An ergonomically adjusted chair minimizes the occurrences of awkward, strained positions that frequently cause injury.

Along with the way we sit, our office jobs are killing us because…

We have our desks laid out wrong

Even with a great chair, a desk that is the wrong height can cause a person to repetitively move and bend awkwardly during the day and injure themselves. Anyone who sits behind a desk needs to make certain it is the right height to comfortably reach the computer keyboard and all pertinent supplies are within a comfortable reach. Add a foot rest to decrease the stress on the lower back. Ergonomically positioning a desk offers greater comfort and less stress on a person’s body.

We also type wrong

Using the keyboard incorrectly can cause a ton of painful medical conditions from neck and back issues to carpal tunnel syndrome. The keyboard should sit at elbow height. Reduce the strain on your hands by keeping them in as natural a position as possible, holding your wrists up even with the backs of your hands. Avoid banging the keys by typing softly, which alleviates the stress on your fingers.

A computer mouse should be situated close to the keyboard, and it’s essential to keep the hand in a neutral position when using it. Avoid resting your hand on the mouse for an extended period of time.

Not taking breaks

According to the Mayo Clinic, sitting for long periods of time is linked to a variety of serious medical conditions from obesity to high blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Sitting in the same position for hours can put pressure on and result in back and neck pain.

Break up sitting every 30 minutes by standing and walking around and stretching if possible. Even standing for a couple of minutes at a time lessens the impact of a sedentary job.

In addition to taking the initiative to build an ergonomic office space, choosing to participate in chiropractic care is a great way to help eliminate pain from back, shoulder, and neck strain. Chiropractic treatment involves adjusting the spine, along with other techniques, offering better alignment in particular and a stronger, healthier body in general. A long-term benefit of chiropractic care is a body that enjoys greater mobility and fewer aches and pains.

An ergonomic office setup is critical in maintaining good posture that minimizes strain and repetitive motion injuries. By investing in ergonomically tailored furniture and setting it up to suit your specific needs, you will lessen the harm an office job does to your body.

If you or a co-worker suffer from symptoms related to an improperly positioned workstation, give us a call. Our Doctor of Chiropractic can help get the symptoms under control as well as guide you toward a more healthier spine and working environment.

How Fibromyalgia Sufferers Can Benefit From Chiropractic Care

Fibromyalgia is one of today’s most common chronic pain conditions. According to the American College of Rheumatology, around 1 in 50 Americans currently suffer from fibromyalgia. Unfortunately, the condition is difficult to diagnose, and, being chronic in nature, can linger for several months or even years. Fibromyalgia typically causes pain throughout the body and creates areas so tender that the slightest pressure hurts. article-014-fibromyalgia

Patients diagnosed with the condition have both traditional and alternative treatment options available to them. Traditional approaches to managing the pain and treating fibromyalgia are anti-inflammatory prescriptions, sleep medications, and muscle relaxers. Patients frequently choose natural remedies instead of or in addition to traditional medication, such as vitamin therapy, acupuncture, and meditation. One of the most common treatments is chiropractic care.

The main ways chiropractic care benefits those who suffer from fibromyalgia are:

Reduces pain levels

The most difficult issue to deal with for fibromyalgia sufferers is the constant pain, which often affects the entire body for weeks or months at a stretch. Although these patients initially seek care for the pain they’re experiencing, they soon realize that chiropractic also helps restore overall health and aids the body in self-healing.

By adjusting the spine to improve alignment, as well as incorporating some form of soft tissue work, chiropractors can assist fibromyalgia patients in minimizing their painful pressure points. Many who suffer with this condition look for relief with chiropractic treatment options, and experience a decrease in the tender spots.

Increases range of motion

Chiropractors are also able to adjust the body’s joints and help loosen them. For fibromyalgia patients, this can sometimes increase their range of motion and allow them to move more easily.

Sometimes it takes several treatments to see significant results, so it’s important to note that chiropractic treatment of fibromyalgia takes a commitment from the patient. The effects, however, are well worth the time invested.

Boosts sleep quality

A common by-product of the pain associated from fibromyalgia is lack of sleep. As anyone knows, being unable to snag several hours sleep can leave you feeling tired, foggy, and irritable.

By working with a chiropractor to loosen their joints and manage their tender points, patients suffering from this condition can enjoy a deeper sleep, and stay asleep longer.

Complements other treatments

Sometimes medicines counteract with each other, or mix together and cause side effects. A big advantage of chiropractic care is it can be utilized in tandem with medications or other remedies, whether traditional or natural.

An individual who is diagnosed with this condition should speak to his or her chiropractor about the various ways to treat it, and remember that there is not a one-stop solution. A treatment regimen should be built on a case-by-case basis tailored to the specific needs of that patient.

Empowers the patient

Individuals who must cope with painful, chronic illnesses can become exasperated with treatment options, and feel as if they have no control over their situations. Unfortunately, these feelings can bring on stress and depression, which only works against getting better. By working with a chiropractor, patients can feel more in charge of their pain management and more optimistic in their recovery.

People who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia need to understand that there are options available to them for pain management, and they may decide to try more than one at a time. Chiropractic care is a valuable tool to treat the symptoms of fibromyalgia, and patients who will commit will see the benefits of less pain, greater mobility, and better sleep. And, perhaps the best benefit of all, they can take control of their circumstances and be a vital part of managing their personal well-being.

If you or a loved one are suffering from fibromyalgia, don’t do it alone. Our chiropractor has a passion for helping sick people get well. So contact us today to schedule an appointment.

5 Things Chiropractic Patients Ought to Know About Text Neck

Remember how your mom always said, “Nothing in life is free”? Well, she was right. High-tech gadgets and smart phones advancing at the speed of light are a modern convenience unlike little else, but the advantages of communication at our fingertips come with a price: text neck.

Here are 5 things chiropractic patients ought to know about text neck, the epidemic that is taking the world by storm:

1. Text neck is caused by poor posture.

article-008-text-neck

Specifically, habitually looking down at a phone or laptop puts extra pounds of unwanted pressure on the cervical spine, causing wear and tear and even degeneration over time. Additionally, in the space between the neck and shoulder is a cluster of nerves. If these nerves are compressed, misaligned, or damaged, the pain is excruciating and difficult to treat.

In short: Text neck puts the head, neck, and spine at risk.

2. Text neck is increasingly common among young people.

Spending as little as two to four hours a day hunched over a smart phone is enough to make a serious impact on the body over time. And though two to four hours may not seem like a long time, it isn’t hard to arrive at two hours by adding several 15-minute or half-hour segments together.

For teenagers, specifically, two to four hours on a smart phone is not unfathomable. Some teens likely spend twice that much time in a given afternoon or the space between classes or over lunch. Consider the impact of 1500+ hours of bad posture in a year. It is no surprise that teenagers are at risk.

The lasting impact of text neck on today’s young people could be costly.

3. Text neck in combination with a sedentary lifestyle is a recipe for disaster.

With hours of looking down at a smart phone often come hours of relaxing on the couch or sitting still. Generally speaking, we aren’t prone to be active when we are engaged in surfing the Internet or texting our friends.

Though the list of ailments for poor posture is long and discouraging, it is made worse by sluggishness or inactivity. The best thing to do is to put the phone down on occasion, stretch, exercise, and return to the technology only once in a while.

The benefits of technology do not outweigh the consequences of inactivity.

4. Text neck can be corrected.

Practicing good posture is the easiest place to start. Making an appointment with a chiropractor is a good move for anyone who is facing the painful side effects of hours spent looking down.

Taking small steps toward better posture can save money and pain in the long run. Choosing to engage in technology as a treat instead of around the clock is a good practice for anyone who wants to live a long and healthy life.

5. Text neck can be avoided.

To be clear: No one is asking anyone to stop using cell phones. Text neck can be avoided without going 1980 on cell phone usage. But avoiding extra pressure on the neck and spine does require forethought and follow-through.

In today’s ever-increasing technological age, choosing to dodge smart phone usage doesn’t happen accidentally. One good strategy is to look with the eyes instead of moving the neck. Another strategy is to ask friends and family to say something when they notice prolonged periods of poor posture.

In short, text neck is nothing to LOL about. Take it seriously and make any necessary changes before text neck gets the best of you. Let us know how we can help by giving us a call today.

How Chiropractic Relieves Neck Pain

If you have pain in any part of your body, it can range from uncomfortable to downright debilitating. In the case of your neck, any degree of irritation can impede your ability to function. Because of this, it is important that you learn about how chiropractic relieves neck pain so that you can find the assistance you need. article-007-neck-pain

When you first visit a chiropractor, you should take along medical records that relate to your neck pain. This includes any medical history that outlines the description and symptoms of your condition by another physician. For instance, whether the pains are sharp or dull, throbbing or steady can provide valuable information to your chiropractor.

Depending on the chiropractor’s approach, a typical first visit includes an initial consultation and examination.  If x-rays or additional imaging are required, you will be referral to one of the many imaging centers here in Columbus, Ohio.  If the chiropractor has time, he or she may go over the results of the aforementioned the same day.

However, many chiropractors prefer to study and review your case before determining if they can or cannot help you. So, even though you’re in pain, be patient for the chiropractor’s full recommendations which may not be available until the following day.

With that said, most chiropractors won’t leave you hanging. They’re compassionate to your pain. In other words, they’ll administer some form of pain relief the same day as your initial visit until a complete diagnosis is available.

During this initial waiting period, your local chiropractor may administer the following pain relief methods for neck pain:

  • Ice
  • Light soft tissue work using a topical analgesic like BioFreeze®
  • Interferential therapy, electrical stimulation and/or other physical therapy modalities
  • Heat (if the condition isn’t acute)

Additionally, your local chiropractor may make pain relief recommendations that you can use back home to help reduce your neck pain until your next visit. These typically include the proper use of ice as well as the administration of a topical analgesic like BioFreeze®.

During your subsequent visit, a detailed treatment plan will be presented to you if your chiropractor believes he or she can help correct the problem. If so, be consistent with the treatment plan your diagnosis warrants so that your neck pain is not only relieved but potentially corrected.

Remember, your local chiropractor is not only concerned about relieving your neck pain but even more concerned about finding and fixing the cause of the problem.

Regardless, when people are experiencing neck pain, it can diminish their quality of life. It becomes difficult to perform regular tasks such as driving. Visiting a chiropractor and allowing them to treat the area is a smart choice. These professionals have undergone extensive training in their field and are capable of treating neck pain effectively. So if you or a loved one are experiencing neck pain, give us a call. We’re here to help!

Chronic Pain: Why Some Hurt and Others Don’t.

Throughout my career here in Columbus, OH, I’ve had the opportunity to work with a wide range of patients, from simple sprain strain injuries to patients with a 25 year history of chronic pain. It is very humbling to work with people that have suffered years with chronic pain. Simple chores like getting out of bed, something you and I do without even thinking about it, can be very difficult for someone in chronic pain.  Imagine a life that is centered on your pain.back pain clip art

Research over the last decade in the area of chronic pain has really progressed. Each day we are learning better ways to help people manage and live with their chronic pain. Early in my practice I was blown away how a patient could enter my office with a broken bone and not even know but another patient with seemingly nothing wrong be crippled by their pain.

What we do know is pain is much deeper than the feeling you get when tissues are damaged in your body. Emotions, prior experiences, fears, and chemical imbalances all are opponents to the expression of pain. This is a very difficult concept to not only grasp, but try to explain to that patient that has suffered chronic pain for years.

The combination of services we provide here at Central Ohio Spine and Joint are some of the most well researched techniques for managing chronic pain.  Movement therapy, acupuncture, massage, manipulation, and exercise all have positive research for the management of chronic pain.  Everyday we have the opportunity to help people live their life with less pain.

The reason I am writing this article is in regards to a video I ran across the other day.  This is one of the better explanations I have found on why people experience pain differently, and how our brain responds to it.

If you know someone that suffers from pain please pass this along. Enjoy!