Chiropractor Laguna Niguel shares intermediate level abdominal exercise.

Involves no equipment.

This exercise works the abdominal, oblique internal/external, iliopsoa muscles.

The purpose is to increase abdominal strength and muscular endurance.

The benefits include improved stability, functional strength and injury prevention.

Begin lying on floor.

Lift knees so that a 90º position is attained at hip and knees. Place hands beside ears. Activate core.

Lift shoulder off floor approximately 6 inches attempting to bring elbow toward opposite opposite knee so that both simultaneously meet.

Return to start position and repeat on opposite side. Continue alternating sides until recommended repetitions are complete.

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Diet for your Disc Injury – Know what Works

images-22.jpegAn Apple a Day Keeps the Spinal Surgeon Away

One of the cardinal rules that all chiropractors go by is to rely on the human body’s own abilities to heal its own self. In fact, this is exactly why most chiropractors say that patients who suffer from potentially debilitating conditions such as herniated discs can prevent the condition by eating the right kind of foods. Almost 80% of the population suffers from back pain and would rather resort to minimally invasive back treatments to make their pain a passing memory.

Sadly, most people do not see the connection between what they eat and the affect it might have on their backs. Remember, your body needs to ingest the appropriate amount of nutrition in order for the muscles in your back to move as they should. Here is what you can include in your diet to ensure just that –

Power Foods

Your muscles need power foods in order to, well, become powerful enough to support your movements. These are natural food items that provide a great boost of energy in small doses over the course of a few hours. In other words, they can supply an ample amount of energy to keep you going without craving for a sugary donut that will deplete you of any reserves you might have in minutes.

Foods that contain a high amount of antioxidants such as blueberries and salmon that contains omega 3 fatty acids are good examples of power foods. Chiropractors say that foods such as these can keep your body supplied with the fuel it needs to maintain or support your spine thereby preventing you from acquiring a disc injury.

Foods that contain vitamins and minerals can also prevent your back from failing you when you need it the most. Power foods such as these actually aid the body in releasing energy from the food it ingests to keep itself healthy. Calcium and Vitamins such as vitamin D keep your bones strong and durable as well.

Eating right can seem like a difficult prospect in the fast paced societies of today. However, your body shouldn’t suffer for it. Spinal injuries such as a disc injury are nothing to scoff at. Therefore it’s best that you include food items such as whole grains, whole wheat bread and vegetables in your diet.  Not only will this help keep your back in shape for the long run it will also help you run on a full tank of gas till lunch time.

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Cervical Herniated Disc – Disc Injuries and Chiropractic Care

Cervical_fracture_dislocation_C6-C7.jpegIndividuals, engaged in strenuous everyday tasks of lifting and shifting heavy loads, and operating machines and computers for long hours on end, run a high risk of experiencing spinal disc injuries. Injuries in the spine or neck region tend to cause extreme pain and hindrance in the movement of the back or neck. Cervical herniated disc is a medical condition in which the patient feels excruciating pain in the neck, due to a slipped disc. Chiropractors provide invasive treatment methods for relieving the pain in the neck and spinal areas of the body.

What Is A Cervical Herniated Disc?

It is a medical condition, in which the individual suffers from extreme pain in the neck, and sometimes shoulder region, due to a slipped disc or pressure on a nerve. Cervical herniated disc injuries are less common than a lumbar herniated disc, which affects the lower region of the body. A cervical herniated disc condition is in the neck region of the body.

The 7 applicable vertebra of the spine are termed as C1 to C7, in a descending manner, for medical convenience. Between every two vertebra, a disc is located which serves as shock absorbers for the spine. The exertion and pressure on the neck and spine of the body causes swelling or bulging of the disc which might in extreme cases, even cause the disc to rupture, resulting in severe disc injuries.

The swelling and bulging of the disc exerts pressure on the nerves, which results in extreme pain in the neck and back region, hampering movement of the affected individual. A slipped disc or cervical herniated disc in the vertebra segment of C4 to C5 causes nerve root impingement, which results in pain in the upper shoulder or arm, hindering movement. Any swelling in the cervical segment of C5 to C6 results in weakening the front arm muscles, also called biceps, and causes a numbing and tingling pain in the wrist. It is the most common area in which a cervical herniated disc condition occurs.

The herniation of the discs in the C6 to C7 vertebra results in creating painful sensations in the back muscles of the arm, also called triceps,  which extends all over the hand, causing pain up to the fingers. Any disc herniation in the C7 to T1 region, results in affecting the control and grip of the hand, with a tingling pain and numb sensation throughout.

Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic care and treatment methods are highly effective for different musculoskeletal disorders and spinal disc injuries, experienced by individuals because of over exertion and engagement in strenuous activities. Chiropractors provide services for joint and muscle adjustment and pain relief.

 

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Failed Back Syndrome – The Result of a Failed Spinal Surgery

380px-Spine_of_scapula.pngFailed back syndrome is a term that is used to define a failed spinal surgery that causes continued pain to the patient. Not much can be done regarding a case of failed back syndrome apart from performing a second surgery. Chiropractic care has, however, introduced means of therapy and adjustment to the spine that can significantly reduce the ill effects of the syndrome with undergoing surgery.

The truth is that outcome of a spinal surgery cannot be predicted precisely.  Sometimes an MRI scan can show an abnormal image which could lead to a wrong diagnosis of the problem.

Causes of Failed Back Surgery Syndrome

Some possible causes of a failed back surgery syndrome may include:

  • A wrong diagnosis of the patient’s condition
  • Incorrect surgery procedure performed on the patient
  • Surgery performed at an incorrect level of the spinal column
  • A failed spinal fusion surgery that had led to other complications
  • Continued pinching of the nerve despite the surgery
  • Scar tissue formation

Symptoms of Failed Back Surgery Syndrome

The symptoms of a failed back syndrome include:

  • Chronic pain that continues even after the surgical procedure
  • Pain around the treated level of spine
  • Slow or no recovery from the surgery
  • Moving around is difficult and flexibility is compromised
  • Throbbing pain in the back
  • Spasms
  • High levels of anxiety leading to depression

Alternates to Repetitive Surgery 

Before undergoing another surgery, chiropractors recommend trying the following:

  • Undergo physical therapy – Physical therapy has proven to be a great method in relieving back-pains of all kinds
  • Try Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation – This therapy is performed by inducing low voltage to reduce pain
  • Take non steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines – These medicine can help suppress inflammation which is a major factor in causing pain
  • Get injected with Steroids – Epidural Steroid Injections are a common method of treating inflamed spinal nerves
  • Carry out therapeutic exercises – Exercises help greatly in pain management
  • Have hot and cold compresses – Hot and cold compresses applied on the pain-stricken area can greatly reduce the inflammation and pain

Due to the vast nature of spinal surgeries, it is always best to consult with a physician or a chiropractor to find a solution that is suitable for a specific case.  Professional advice is necessary when it comes to severe cases.

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Understanding Ergonomics – How Seat Design Plays a Vital Role

FreedomChair.jpgIt is estimated that at least 50% individuals in the industrialized world suffer from some kind of back problem, most notably due to a poor or inadequate seat design. How we sit all day in front of our workstations has a marked impact on the overall health of our spine. As a result of bad posture, the lumbar region in the back bone is what takes the most pounding. Here’s what you need to know, and many chiropractors will stand by it.

There is no universal seat that’s designed to accommodate every single person. But there are a number or ergonomic factors that come into play when we’re talking seat design. These generally work well for the average person.

Seat height should be set in a way so as to support a knee angle of 90 degrees. This takes undue stress off the thighs and buttocks. A chair that’s too high will increase the pressure at the underside of the knees, reducing blood flow and increasing unnecessary pressure on the nerve.

A chair that’s too low places pressure on the ischial tuberosities – this is where the upper thigh originates in the gluteus maximus region. Normally, the glutes cover them in the upright position, but they are exposed and at an ergonomic disadvantage when we’re sitting.

Optimal seat depth is recommended at 16.5”; between 14” and 18.5” for adjustable seats.

You should avoid hard seats. Seat pan contouring and cushioning should be designed in a way so that pressure is distributed over a larger area and the pelvis rotates forward – this encourages better posture.

Ideal seat cushioning is about 2” thick. The cushioning needs to be firmer and thicker in the back, while being less firm and thinner at the front. Too much cushioning and your body is going to sink into the chair, restricting movement. A soft chair may be very welcoming and comfortable at first, but it goes against basic ergonomic sense; as the body sinks, blood flow is reduced and skin temperature rises as you experience more compression under the thighs. At the end of the day – more discomfort.

A seat width that’s between 20” and 23” generally works well.

An ideal seat angle helps you maintain good contact with the backrest; a 5 to 10 degree angle is good.

There many more ergonomic factors related to optimal seating, and these are just some of them at a glance. A good chiropractor can help you determine exactly what type of chair best suits your body type.

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Back Pain – Being Prepared for Your First Visit to a Chiropractor

Folks are often faced with this dilemma: I feel discomfort in my back, but it’s probably nothing, right? It’ll just go away in a matter of days or weeks. I probably just need to rest more or eat better.

It’s true that a handful of back pain dilemmas arise from notably bad posture, a poor or inadequate diet, bad sleeping habits or even using bad form while exercising. Unfortunately, the average individual is not qualified to properly diagnose these problems, which can often prove to be fatal down the road.

It may be wise to consult a Chiropractor at this stage; an expert who can provide extensive knowhow and diagnoses into each and every kind of back-related issue. This article aims to prepare you somewhat, so you know some of the things to expect when you visit a Chiropractor for the first time.

In the event that your back pain turns out to be more serious than just symptoms of discomfort or overuse, here’s how a Chiropractor would generally diagnose causes:

Potentially Serious

This can range from conditions like tumors, infections, a local open wound or burn to major neurological problems such as cauda equina – a rare but serious condition nevertheless that’s best described as extreme pressure and swelling of the nerves at the lower tip of the spinal cord. This is considered a serious medical emergency and may need urgent surgical attention.

Other conditions in this category include prolonged internal bleeding and joint infection.

Nerve Problem

In cases where the nerve root in the lower back is compressed or pinched, you experience sciatica. One of the typical causes of this condition is a lumbar herniated disc or spinal stenosis – with age, the general makeup of the spine often changes, leading to degeneration of the bones, muscles, ligaments and discs surrounding the spinal cord. A common symptom of this condition is leg pain. This pain is often accompanied by a tingling sensation in the buttocks and legs.

Non-Specific

This can be categorized as “mechanical back pain” in the lumbar region; also known as axial back pain, this is categorized as either a sharp or dull pain and can be either felt intermittently or constantly. It’s referred to as mechanical since the lower back pain can get worse with certain physical movements such as sports. Or symptoms can worsen as a result of sitting long hours for example. This is also a common type of back pain and is typically non-specific.

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Do you have a health problem that concerns you?
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Introduction to Chiropractic

images-8.jpegWhat is Chiropractic?

Being a type of manual therapy, the practitioner utilizes techniques, forces and manipulations that are administered chiefly by hands. The spinal cord is the center of all therapies for a chiropractic doctor. Their belief is that the spine is the central structure as it allows messages from different parts of the body to reach the brain and vice versa. Under the state of paralysis in any part of the body, it is the spinal cord that can make any limb completely nonfunctional.

Spine Manipulation

Keeping the vitality of the spine in mind, D. D. Palmer brought to life the concept of spine manipulation to deal with vertebral subluxation. It is the practice of applying varying amounts of force to the area of concern in the spine to restore normal functioning.  Palmer is popular for applying this technique to a deaf individual (deafness not present at birth) and being successful at restoring his hearing capabilities.

Subluxation

Primarily a chiropractic practitioner deals with a vertebral subluxation. A subluxation is when the spine loses its normal positioning and the neural pathway dysfunction causes a compromise in the functioning of several different parts of the body including the visceral system. A subluxation occurs as a result of a trauma, injury or even a chemical imbalance in the body.

Chiropractic’s Forte 

A thorough examination is undertaken before your doctor performs any chiropractic techniques to relieve your pain. Several conditions are beyond the realm of this care. If you have a neurological condition, then you will be recommended to a neurologist and will not be administered any care procedures under a chiropractic practitioner. Other such conditions that cannot be dealt with manual therapies include tumors, broken bones, osteoporosis and arthritis. Areas that can be called its forte are pain in the upper and lower back, neck pain, and headaches, minor injuries related to sports, asthma, tennis elbow, frozen shoulder, menstrual pains and the like.

Neck pain

This is said to be the second most valid reason for paying a visit to a chiropractic practitioner. However, neck pain can be caused by a variety of reasons. Several of which can be dealt with utilizing chiropractics. With cervical disc degenerative diseases, pinched cervical nerve, minor injuries to ligaments, herniated disc disease and the like, chiropractic can be very effective.

When the neck becomes an area of concern, several other parts of the body can suffer the impact. Weakness in the arms, shoulders and hands, the tingling sensation in parts of the body supplied by the neck suffer along with the pain in neck. Therefore, dealing with neck pain with the help of a chiropractic practitioner is a wise decision.

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