Back pain is extremely common and in fact, 4 out of 5 people will experience it at some point in their lives. It is so prevalent that it is the leading cause of missed work in the US. When it strikes, the pain can range from mild to extreme and last just a few days or persist and affect your daily life. If you are like most Americans, your initial reaction is to reach for an over the counter pain pill, but the truth is that thinking is backwards. Instead of focusing on the injury once it occurs, the key is to try to prevent the pain from occurring in the first place. Keep reading to learn about the Top 5 Common Causes Of Back Pain And How To Prevent It.
The Top 5 Common Causes Of Back Pain And How To Prevent It
1). Sitting At A desk Hunched Over:
You sit for hours at a desk job, staring at your computer. You are probably not even thinking about your posture, but how you are sitting is affecting your back. Sitting for long periods of time, puts stress on your back and can eventually cause long term damage. Fortunately there are some simple remedies to prevent this from happening.
How To Prevent It: Make a conscious effort to sit up straight with your feet planted firmly on the floor, and make sure you are sitting eye level with your computer. If needed, raise your chair, so you are not looking down. In addition, make sure you get up at regular intervals to stretch and relax your muscles.
2). Improper lifting:
When you bend and lift incorrectly, you are putting strain on your back, which can cause muscle strain, disc injury and even joint damage.
How To Prevent It: The most common advice you hear in regards to lifting properly is to bend at the knees and while this is true, it is also important to make sure you are bending at the hips and avoid twisting your back. Another good tip is to remember to keep the object you are lifting, close to your body to limit the force you are putting on your back
3). Sleeping Position:
The absolute worst position to sleep in is on your stomach. Sleeping this way compresses your lower back and causes you to keep your head twisted while you sleep. Another common sleeping position is sleeping on your back, this position is also not recommended, because it puts a lot of added pressure on your spine.
How To Prevent It: Ideally, the best position to sleep is on your side. Switching sleeping positions isn’t as easy at it sounds, so if changing positions isn’t an option for you, the solution is to use a pillow under your abdomen if you are a stomach sleeper and under your knees if sleeping on your back.
4). Lack Of Exercise:
Living a sedentary lifestyle has so many detrimental effects on your health, not the least of weakening your muscles and stiffening your joints.
How To Prevent it: The obvious answer is to exercise more, which will give you more muscle tone and and help prevent back injuries, but it is also important to add back and abdominal exercises into your routine to strengthen your back and stomach.
Stress is the root cause of all evil, and the havoc it wreaks on your body is irrefutable. When you are stressed, you tend to clench your jaw, tighten your shoulders and stiffen your neck, all of which puts pressure on your back.
How To Prevent It: Managing your stress is vital to your health and there are many options. Yoga, meditation and deep breathing are all activities that can help.
Prevention is key, and making simple changes to your lifestyle can reduce your chances of hurting your back. If despite your efforts at prevention, you do injure your back, Chiropractic can help get you out of pain and back to living your life.
Dr. Johnson, your Baltimore Chiropractor, has been treating pain and patients with auto injuries for almost 20 years. For more information visit: www.MyPainReliefCenter.com . To schedule a FREE consultation, give us a call at (410) 744-1233.
Sciatica is a term that you hear often from Doctors and friends when talking about their pain in the lower back and legs, but what is it really and how can it be treated?
WHAT IS SCIATICA
Sciatica is a condition that affects more than 3 million people each year and is essentially pain that stems from your sciatic nerve that runs from your lower back and down the back of your legs. The pain is often severe and can interfere with your quality of life. Sciatica is generally caused by compression of the sciatic nerve and is actually a symptom of another medical condition. Some conditions that cause Sciatica include, degenerative disc disease, herniated and bulging discs, spinal misalignments and sometimes non spinal issues such as sitting on your wallet and pregnancy.
WHO IS AT RISK?
Sciatica is most common in people in their 40’s and 50’s due to age related changes to our spine. Other risk factors include improper lifting and bending, poor posture and prolonged sitting.
- Shooting pain down the back of the leg
Tingling and numbness in the back of the leg
Pain that gets worse when you sit
A sharp pain that makes it hard to stand up and or walk
HOW IS SCIATICA TREATED
Fortunately, Sciatica is rarely permanent and easily treatable. Since Sciatica has many causes, your Chiropractor will begin with a thorough consultation and physical examination. Most often an X-Ray or MRI will be taken to determine the root cause of the pain. Once the diagnosis has been made, a custom comprehensive treatment plan will be developed. Often a combination of treatments will be prescribed, depending on the cause of the Sciatica. Some possible treatments include:
- Ice/Cold therapy is used to minimize the inflammation and control the pain
Massage therapy is often prescribed to stretch and relax the tight muscles
TENS therapy is a machine that sends stimulating electirc currents across the nerve pathways which interefere with the transmission of pain. Tens units have multiple settings and are used for acute and chronic pain relief.
Ultrasound uses sound waves to penetrate the deep tissues and helps to reduce muscle spasms, stiffness and pain.
Physical Therapy is designed to gently stretch soft tissues and improve posture, using exercises and rehabilitation.
Spinal Decompression is also used to help decrease swelling in the discs and help alleviate nerve pressure/irritation
Spinal Manipulation (Chiropractic Adjustments) Is a gentle procedure to help restore misaligned vertebrae which help to remove the nerve irritation that is causing the muscle spasms and pain.
If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, Dr. Johnson, your Baltimore Chiropractor can help! If you would like more more information on Sciatica or would like to set up your FREE consultation, give us a call at: (410) 744-1233or visit our website at: www.MyPainReliefCenter.com
Headaches are extremely common and statistics show that 9 out of 10 people suffer from headaches at some point in their life. However, for a large amount of people, headaches are much more frequent and can severely affect their quality of life. If you are suffering from a headache, whether it’s a sinus headache, tension headache or migraine, your only thoughts are to make it stop hurting. Your first instinct is to probably reach for an Advil, Tylenol or other similar medication, but the truth is when you take that pill, you are only masking the symptoms, not treating the cause, and the odds are that headache will be back. Along with masking the symptoms, taking frequent pain medication can be dangerous and even more detrimental to your health. Studies show that even taking just a little too much Acetaminophen over time increases your risk of dying and can severely damage your liver. Some studies have shown that taking too much pain medication can triple your chances of having a stroke.
Why Am I Getting Headaches
If you get frequent headaches, it’s important to take it as a warning sign. It’s your bodies way of telling you that something is wrong. Headaches have many causes, and some headaches are caused by triggers in your environment, which can include certain foods, not getting enough sleep, stress or high blood pressure, but most frequently, headaches are caused by muscle tension in our bodies, specifically our neck and are attributed to irritation of the nerve and blood vessels. Sitting too long and staring at your computer screen, driving for too long and bad posture (text neck) while looking at your cell phone, are all examples of sedentary activities that put too much tension on your neck causing pain.
How Can Chiropractic Help
Chiropractors treat headaches on a daily basis and are trained extensively to look for areas of the spine where the joints may be out of alignment and causing irritation. They also look for areas in your neck that aren’t supporting your head properly. Through a thorough physical exam and consultation and x rays, your Chiropractor can diagnose the problem and create a treatment plan designed to correct the cause of the headaches and thereby prevent future headaches from occurring.
What Is A Treatment Plan For Headaches
Depending on the cause of your headache, your Chiropractor may prescribe the following treatments:
*exercises to relieve the tension
*spinal manipulation (Chiropractic adjustment)
*nutritional advice and or advice on ways to improve your posture
Johnson Chiropractic has served the Baltimore area for over 19 years and takes most insurance. Dr. Johnson takes pride in staying up to date on all the latest techniques and research. He and his staff are always available to answer any questions you may have related to headaches and Chiropractic. If you are suffering from headaches and would like to come in for a FREE Consultation, or want more information please contact us at (410) 744-1233 or visit our website at www.MyPainReliefCenter.com.