Lower back pain is one of the most common complaints that chiropractors address. Lower back pain from sitting seems inescapable in our tech driven world. There are however plenty of ways to combat it. Common sense goes a long way in improving your lot and there are a lot of tools that will improve your life and your spinal health.
The first thing you can do is free. Keep a bottle of water at your desk and drink; a lot. Nature’s call will force you get up from your desk regularly AND you will stay hydrated. Making sure you get up and take a small walk around the building every hour is a great way to make sure you prevent lower back pain from sitting.
Exercise is also an important tool to combat lower back pain. Strengthening your core keeps your body more stable and resistant to injury. Here is a video that I made with basic core exercises: https://youtu.be/bUWDEvZxj9Y While it’s clear I will never star in Hollywood, doing these regularly will go a long way in strengthening your body.
If you really want to avoid lower back pain from sitting, the obvious answer is don’t sit. Does that mean I think standing desks are the perfect cure? No. Standing desks come with their own challenges. The key to avoiding lower back pain is varying your position frequently. If you have a standing desk, get a thick mat to stand on and go back and forth between sitting and standing frequently throughout the day.
One of the best things you can do to relieve the damage that comes to your lower back from sitting is to get adjusted by a chiropractor regularly. A weekly adjustment is the best insurance policy you can buy to combat the long term effects of sitting. It will help your nervous system work properly to fire your muscles in patterns that your nerves are meant to fire and activate. It will also help knock the “fuzz” out that builds within your fascia and winds everything up into muscular patterns that cause compensation and pain over time.
You may remember your grammar school gym class where the PE teacher would lead you in jumping jacks, push-ups, sit-ups and arm circles. If you’re like a lot of baby boomers, you probably look back and assume it really didn’t do much for the health of the students — just kept the class busy for an hour.
Elementary school days may be way behind you, but exercise carries many benefits now that it couldn’t offer a younger you, especially if you’re battling pain from an injury or chronic condition.
The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics published a report on randomized controlled trials, or RCTs, looking at the result of exercise as treatment for patients experiencing intense pain from soft tissue injuries in the hip, thigh or knee. Success was measured by the following factors:
Intensity of pain
Quality of life
“One RCT found statistically significant improvements in pain and function favoring clinic-based progressive combined exercises over a ‘wait and see’ approach for patellofemoral (anterior knee) pain syndrome,” the study says. “Patients with patellofemoral pain syndrome or groin pain had the best results with clinic-based exercise programs.”
An ABC News blog posted an article about a study comparing the outcome of three different forms of treatment for pain. Results show that both the patients treated by chiropractic professionals and the individuals who received home exercise advice, referred to as HEA, had higher rates of success than those who turned to medication for relief. Just 13 percent of the patients who took medication reported a satisfactory reduction in pain, whereas, about two-thirds of those who were treated through either chiropractic care or HEA said they were pain-free.
A total of 272 patients, age 18-65, who were suffering from recent-onset neck pain took part in the study, which the National Institutes of Health spearheaded.
“I always prescribe exercises and/or physical therapy for neck pain,” wrote Dr. John Messmer from Penn State College of Medicine. “I also tell patients that the exercises are the treatment and the drugs are for the symptoms.”
Dr. Lee Green, professor of family medicine at the University of Michigan, also talked to ABC News about the study.
“Doesn’t surprise me a bit,” Dr. Green said. “Neck pain is a mechanical problem, and it makes sense that mechanical treatment works better than a chemical one.”
The study, which was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, singles out the effectiveness of spinal manipulation therapy, or SMT, to provide relief for patients with neck pain. Researchers found that in both the short-term and long-term statistics, SMT had the most effective outcome. The report adds that HEA proved equally effective at some points in the study.
Participants rated their pain at several intervals: 2, 4, 8, 26, and 52 weeks. This enabled scientists to draw specific conclusions, such as the evidence showing that 12 weeks of SMT provided greater pain relief than up to one year of medication.
Your chiropractic professional can guide you in choosing exercises that target the areas you need treating. Chiropractic visits, in addition to home exercise practices, are a way to double down on your odds of successful treatment.
According to the Mayo Clinic website, there are multiple benefits to using exercise for your joints, as well as improving general wellness. Exercise serves to:
Strengthen the muscles around your joints
Help you maintain bone strength
Give you more energy to get through the day
Make it easier to get a good night’s sleep
Improve your balance
We’re not talking about the kind of punishing calisthenics that win you the Presidential Physical Fitness Award, but something to just curb your symptoms and add some range of motion. Consulting with a chiropractor to incorporate some exercise seems to be the best way to get a passing grade in pain relief.
Asthma affects approximately 1 in 13 people, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Asthma is also the leading chronic disease in children, as well as the top reason for missed school days. Asthma causes more than 2 million emergency room visits each year; when overnight hospital stays are required, the average length is 3.6 days. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America provide more statistics here, but chances are that either you or someone you know deals with asthma. So what can you do about it and can chiropractic help?
World Health Organization defines asthma is a chronic disease characterized by recurrent episodes of breathlessness and wheezing. The severity and the frequency are dependent upon the person. While some experience attacks at any time, others experience asthma attacks induced by certain situations or events such as exercise.
Bronchial tubes are the passageways that air flows through into and out of the lungs. During an asthma attack, the lining of the tubes are irritated and swell. This causes a narrowing of the tubes, thus a reduction of airflow into and out of the lungs. Hence, the wheezing and breathlessness.
Reduced airflow and asthma attacks can contribute to more health issues than the obvious discomfort from lack of proper airflow. This includes difficulty sleeping, daytime fatigue, decreased activity levels, and ability to concentrate and carry out daily duties as well as school and work absenteeism.
Can Chiropractic Help Asthma
Correct spinal alignment and full range of spinal joint motion support proper nervous system functioning. The nervous system is your master control system. When the spine is misaligned or not moving properly, it can negatively affect your body’s ability to handle irritants that would otherwise not be an issue.
Chiropractors don’t treat asthma. They do, however, look at the functioning of the entire body as a result of how well the spine is moving or not moving. If a patient is suffering from an ailment such as asthma, the chiropractor looks at the level of the spine that is associated with those structures involved. With regard to asthma, if necessary, chiropractors can check and adjust the thoracic spinal segments because the nerves that exit this portion of your spine innervate (or supply) the lungs and bronchial tubes.
When the thoracic spine is misaligned or not moving through its full range of motion, it can also impede the ability of the lungs to expand fully with inhalation. So when chiropractors adjust the spine and restore the full range of motion to the thoracic spine, it aids in the lungs’ ability to take in the maximum amount of air possible. While this decrease in movement may seem minimal, all motion counts no matter how small, especially if one is dealing with asthma.
So yes, chiropractic may help those with asthma.
If you deal with asthma and are looking to use more conservative measures, let the chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic check your spine and assist you and your lungs in the healthiest life possible.