The unfortunate truth
The truth is, our spines are under pressure from day 1. The forces that conspire to debilitate us begin the second we are subjected to gravity’s downward force. That’s why we preach and practice chiropractic for everyone, including infants. But the larger -scale demographic trends of back pain are also concerning. Let’s examine this statement, “never too young for back pain,” in a little more depth
Technology takes a toll
No matter how much you love it, all those devices have a measurable effect on your health. Excessive screen time keeps us from being physically active; it also keeps us from being socially active. While there is a pretense that all your social media keeps us “more in touch than ever,” we are also foregoing myriad social interactions throughout the day. It becomes hard to rest with technology always around- different devices dinging, always keeping you in touch with the world around you. Disconnecting- and decompressing- becomes difficult.
Younger spines are more resilient to the stresses of life than fully formed, adult spines
Besides the fact that children are generally more active than adults, their spine are also more flexible and resilient to injury. With more activity comes a greater chance of injury, so we do expect to see more sports-related dysfunction in younger spines. But if your young one is complaining of back pain that is unrelated to sports and is bordering on chronic, it’s definitely time to sit up and take note.
No matter your profession, it takes a toll on your spine
Whether you are a professional runner or you sit all day at a computer; whether you bend over cars or work in a hospital; whether you are in a factory or in a forest, your job is going to extract a cost from your spine. For so many of us, productivity means pain. For the office worker, the added compression of sitting leaves you stiff and sore on your commute home. For someone who is on their feet, or bending over often, the spine is at elevated risk of injury from flexion of the spine. Taking the pain out of your workday means being proactive about prevention.
When managing your pain becomes more than you can bear…
…many of us turn to our primary care providers for help; many of those PCPs may then refer you on to a spinal health care specialist or a spinal surgeon to consult over the pain. At Hayes Family Chiropractic, we specialize in treating spines with non-invasive techniques. By promoting conservative care, we take a calculated approach that aims to prevent you from having to go under the knife. This is proven time and again to be the best way to start off when treating conditions of the spine. True, your condition may call for surgery- but starting with conservative care helps us develop a clearer picture of the interplay between your spine, your medical history and your lifestyle.
Defining chiropractic philosophy
Before you can put it into daily use, we’ve got to define it! At Hayes Family Chiropractic, we believe that the most important thing in life is taking care of ourselves, our families and our communities. But this starts with the individual- before you can help others you need to help yourself. And in order to feel your best, both physically and mentally, you need to be proactive about the health of your spine! Chiropractic philosophy believes that by focusing on the wellbeing of your spine, you can positively influence all other aspects of health.
Travel stresses our spines
There’s no avoiding it- planes, trains and automobiles are hardly designed with excellent ergonomics in mind. And they are certainly not customized to your body! As exciting as it is, traveling demands a lot from our bodies which means you need to be extra proactive about looking out for risk factors and warning signs. If you are facing the prospect of more than 3 hours in transit, you are likely to suffer from some degree of stiffness in the spine. For some of us, that may not cause an immediate problem; for others, it can be intolerable. Most likely, you are somewhere in between. Take a look at our tips for a healthier spine while traveling.
Water is one of the best mediums for exercising with back pain
For people with chronic back pain, or those looking to rehabilitate a long-standing spinal injury, we often recommend they get wet! The pool is often the best way to ease back into exercising, even if your end goal is to return to land-based activity. Water-based exercise offers the same benefits as land-based, but with significantly fewer risks. The pool, especially a warm-water pool designed for water therapy, is a much gentler environment in which you can regain lost confidence and improve body balance. With the limitation of gravity removed, you are able to move more freely, exercise more effectively and restore lost range of motion in the spinal joints. This is something we can get behind.
Low on the scorecard, high on the wellness
Golf is a simultaneously good and bad for the back; as a form of low-impact exercise, it gets us out and moving in a purposeful fashion. Depending on how you play, you may carry your bag or walk up and down hills. No matter who you are, the golf swing involves generating power, generally from torsion of the hips and force from the shoulders. You spend time in unnatural bending positions while you putt, or reach over to tee up or retrieve your ball. The reason we point out all of these motions is because they leave you vulnerable to:
- Muscle strain
- Spinal injuries
- Repetitive strain injury
The spine and the sport of golf share a precarious relationship. At Hayes Family Chiropractic, we help ensure that you play your best game while minimizing the risk for injury.
Lifting causes injuries
Lifting, especially when it involves heavy objects, causes injury because it increases the amount of compression on your spine. To begin with, your back muscles are not designed to bear heavy burdens on their own; the legs are much more capable of this action, hence the slogan: lift with your legs and not your back. If you are already suffering from back pain, lifting is only likely to aggravate your injury; it is a motion best avoided. With all this in mind, so many of us persist in bending at the waist and lifting with our backs. Without further ado, here are two strategies for lifting that won’t cost your back in the long run.