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Here you will find great tips for healthy living, nutritional advice, and the latest news on health studies and research.

Tag Archives: injuries

Why back surgery, if it isn’t effective?

Did you know that there is an 80% chance that you will suffer from back pain, if you already haven’t? Did you know that there are 500,000 disc surgeries annually and that most of them are unnecessary and ineffective?  Several studies now indicate that for many patients, fusion surgeries designed to alleviate the pain from degenerative discs, disc herniation’s, and/or radiculopathy do not work. This can lead to significant increase with disability, opiate use, prolonged work loss and poor return to work status. On the plus side, the medical world is now rethinking its approach to back problems because “the world of spinal medicine, unfortunately, is producing patients with failed back surgery syndrome at an alarming rate”. “There is an overwhelming body of evidence indicating that chiropractic management of low back pain is more cost-effective than medical management.” Dr. Anthony Rosner testifying before of the Institute of Medicine, stated, “Today we can argue that chiropractic care, at least for back pain, appears to have vaulted from last to first place as a treatment option.”  Spread the word to your friends and loved ones!

Latent pain..happens to everyone!!

Health Tip Today:  Well, as a doctor who likes to practice what he preaches, I must say that my last 2 health tips discussed injuries due to working in the yard.  As proof, I did some yard work over the weekend, mostly edging and raking.  I did this for two consecutive days (Sat & Sun) and for a limited time. Being right handed, the right side of my mid back and right shoulder felt some fatigue, but other than that, I was careful with bending as not to hurt my low back.  Today (2 days later), I went to the gym this morning and my mid-back and posterior aspect of the right shoulder started getting tight and sore.  Funny enough (duh), I couldn’t figure out why, as I hadn’t done anything to hurt it.  The light bulb finally came on during my drive home, as I realized that I had been pushing an edger and raking right handed over the weekend.  This is kind of humorous, as initially I couldn’t figure out why I was getting sore.  It happens to the best of us, but at least I know why.  I shall take a visit to my chiropractor for some treatment!! 

Latent symptoms!

I spent some time this weekend doing the very thing I discussed last time, performing chores in the yard, as the weather was finally decent.  Often times, neck and back pain manifests days to weeks after the event that causes injury.  This includes auto accidents, falling, bending or lifting and other such activities or incidents.  This sometimes makes it hard to pin point the incident that injured them.  This last month I have had patients come in with pain symptoms from incidents that happened several days previous.  One from a fall and one from lifting heavy boxes. They seemed fine after the event (fall and lifting) and basically pain free for days. However, they started getting sore and tight about 5-6 days later, and the pain and discomfort progressed to the point they saw me.  Car accidents often progress this way also.  A thorough history will generally uncover the cause, but if you find yourself or a friend in this scenario, hustle to your chiropractor to get the help you need so you are healthy enough to enjoy the nice weather…!!

Spring Back Care!

Now that spring is upon us, the spring chores will be consuming a lot of time, especially if you enjoy working in your yard and garden.  Bending over for an extended time is one of the most common causes of back pain during this time of year.  Often it is due to weeding, mulching, or any other chore that involves forward flexing, but lifting heavy items is also a concern. Maintaining a flexed posture, for any sustained period of time, is not healthy for your spine. It causes the discs and spinal muscles to come under extreme stress.  If it doesn’t cause pain immediately it may cause pain in the not-to-distant future.  Make sure you monitor your forward bending and take constant breaks to give your back some relief.  Also when bending, bend at the hips so you do not round your lower back, as this is a common mistake people make. Finally, never twist with something heavy in your arms.  Enjoy the spring and keep your back healthy!

Proper bending technique!

If you are like me and generally hate colder weather, then you have to admit this winter wasn’t so bad. I talked to my mom in Nebraska last night and they have 70 degree weather with 80’s on the way.  With the warmer weather, many people are chomping at the bit to get in the yard and perform those spring tasks that lead to back and neck pain.  This mostly comes from bending and/or lifting. Remember to slowly work your way into the yard chores.  I see more gardening injuries in the spring and summer than any other time of year.  There is a proper way to bend and it isn’t necessarily “bending and lifting with the legs”.  Bending properly comes from the hips while keeping the back in a neutral position. To learn this technique, place a broom handle against your butt with the top against the back of your head.  Slowly bend forward while keeping the broom in contact with the butt and head.  This forces you to bend at the hips.  It takes some practice but will keep your back healthier !! Give it a try!

Bend & Lift Safely

Wow…What beautiful weather this last weekend here in the Chicago region.  Feels like mid April…hope it lasts.  Speaking of great weather, many people were working in there yards and did you know that bending forward while working in the yard is a very common reason people hurt their backs?  Bending of the spine causes the fibers of the disc to distort and increases pressure within the disc.  These fibers usually goes back to their normal orientation upon straightening.  However, enough bends over the course of time, for anyone individual, may be enough to push the disc to its breaking point.  Try to hinge at the hips instead of rounding your lower back when you bend.  when lifting, use the hips and not the knees. This takes a little bit of practice however this decreases some stress off the disc and makes bending and lifting safer.  If you do injure your back, make sure Chiropractic is your first stop for the best care available.  It works!!

Bikes vs Football..?

Did you know that bicycling causes almost as many hospital emergency injuries to kids (5-14 year olds) as football does, according to the Consumer Product Safety Division? As the warmer weather invades, kids are going to be riding their bikes again, and as adults and parents, we need to take this into consideration, as we do not normally consider bike ride as dangerous as football.  Most of us baby boomers learned to ride bikes without all the gear that is available for kids today. Helmets, padded gloves, shin pads and elbow pads were not options, or at least not for me…! Now, I do ride with a helmet for protection (No training wheels…lol). Chiropractic is a great way to keep you and your kids healthy, relative to the bumps and bruises associated with those sport and recreational type injuries that will inevitably occur.  Treat your loved ones to the wellness they deserve..Chiropractic works!

Sprain/Strains which comes first?

Did you ever hurt a ligament or muscle or tendon?  As I always tell my patients, you cannot hurt one without effecting the other. Ligaments connect bone to bone and provide the joint with restraint.  Tendons connect muscle to bone and they also provide restraint to any given joint. Anytime a ligament is injured, it will affect the muscles that control the joint and vice versa. An injured ligament (sprain) is stretched or torn, an injured tendon/muscle (strain) is also stretched or torn.  Both are inherent in giving a joint stability while allowing proper motion. An injured ligament sends information the central nervous system which causes the muscles to react to stabilize the joint.  The muscle then tries to compensate as it tries to stabilize the joint until it can no longer maintain itself and eventually leads to spasticity, then tetanus or perpetual spasm, until failure. As a Chiropractor, I see this complex situation play out daily with my spine patients, after they hurt themselves and wait too long before seeking care.  Get the proper care for these types of injuries!! Your chiropractor is great at helping deal with these injuries.

Mood & Back Pain

Wow!  Did you now that as I write this, there is a big yellow spot in the sky which I think is the sun?…We have had very few sunny days the last several weeks in our area.  It definitely makes the disposition better when the sun shines.  Another thing that makes your disposition sunnier is not having back pain.  Did you know back pain accounts for a great majority of prescribed pain killers?  Back pain can also lead to mood disorders and depression.  Chiropractic can help tremendously with reducing and preventing back pain and recurrence. The right doc, at the right time, makes a  huge difference when treating a person with back and neck issues by reducing reliance on pain meds, reducing addiction risks, reducing costs, and providing a more efficient, effective and faster recovery. Chiropractic works, and works well…spread the word!!

Bending and Spine Pain

Did you know the worst time to bend your back is in the morning?  Back pain comes in many forms and has many causes.  Back pain can go away on its own, but don’t let that fool you.  There is usually an underlying cause and not addressing the cause can mean chronic and life long back issues.  Often times doctors tell patients to strengthen their core muscles to help with back pain.  However, some back exercises shouldn’t be performed as they can make back pain worse.  The most common one is abdominal crunches or sit-ups.  This causes flexion of the spine and puts a lot of stress on the disc material fibers.  The discs of our spine only have so many number of bends before they damage.  This may be different for each individual. The reason not to flex the spine in the morning is that the discs are more hydrated, thicker and more prone to injury.. Limit your bending in the mornings…more later!!