When Stretching Isn’t the Answer: Chiropractic Adjustment for Hamstring Tightness

If you’ve ever gone for a run or a workout without stretching first, you can probably remember the feeling of your leg muscles tightening and being sore the next day. Hamstring tightness, in particular, is a common problem for many people. Consistent tightness in the back of the legs is not only uncomfortable but can also make exercising extremely difficult.

However, many people stretch every day to relieve hamstring tension, only to see no results. While this can be frustrating, it likely indicates that the problem does not lie in your muscle’s length. Instead, there may be another underlying problem that needs to be identified and addressed.

Ideal Spine works with chiropractors to learn about Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP), a chiropractic approach that diagnoses and treats the root of your pain, not just the symptom, with chiropractic adjustment. If you are frustrated by hamstring tension, make an appointment with a chiropractor to get help identifying the true issue.

Potential causes of hamstring tightness

There are a few different problems that may be occurring in your hamstrings. Although stretching won’t do much to solve these problems, chiropractic adjustment may be able to help.

Muscle compensation

One possible cause of your hamstring tightness has less to do with your hamstrings and more to do with other related muscles in your body. Muscles that typically stabilize and facilitate movement for more active muscles like hamstrings may be too weak and are not functioning properly. Thus, the active muscles may be working harder to compensate for the others’ weakness.

In order to alleviate the tension in your hamstrings, you’ll want to do exercises to activate those stabilizing muscles, so they grow strong and take some pressure off your hamstrings. Sometimes these weaknesses are caused by misalignments in your spine, which pull at the body unnaturally. A chiropractic adjustment on your spine may help restore balance and stability to your entire body.

Pelvic tilt

An anterior pelvic tilt might also be the cause of your tight hamstrings. Poor posture and a lack of exercise can allow the pelvis to shift forward slightly, and, because your muscles are complexly connected, the tilting of the pelvis might be pulling on your hamstrings.

In order to rectify the tilt in your pelvis, exercise is highly recommended, as well as a chiropractic manipulation to fix any spinal shifting the tilt may have caused.

Sciatic nerve irritation

Another problem is actually not due to tightness in the muscle at all – just the feeling of it! Nerve irritation sometimes feels a lot like tightness in the muscles, but it has a drastically different cause. Your sciatic nerve runs down the back of the leg and can make your hamstring appear to be tight. If this is the issue, stretching your hamstring may actually make this problem worse by irritating the sciatic nerve even more, causing inflammation.

There is the possibility that the sciatic nerve is being irritated by an issue in your spine. A vertebral disc may be bulging or has herniated, inflaming the nerve root. Or, perhaps a bone spur or inflamed joint is impinging on the space called the foramen that the nerve root exists, compressing it. A series of chiropractic adjustments may be able to relieve tension being placed on the sciatic nerve and allow it to transmit signals without interruptions once again.

If you’re perplexed by the consistent tightness in your hamstrings, you should visit a chiropractor and have them pinpoint the exact root of your discomfort. Contact Ideal Spine to find a CBP trained chiropractor near you today.

Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.

What Happens When There’s No Cure for Your Chronic Pain?

Chronic pain, or pain lasting longer than three to six months, is a troublesome problem that millions of people suffer from each day. For many patients, handling chronic pain involves a revolving door of doctors and tests to identify the underlying cause of discomfort.

There are numerous chronic conditions affecting the spine, such as spondylolisthesis, fibromyalgia, and spinal stenosis. These conditions often maintain constant low levels of pain with occasional flare-ups of more intense pain and difficulty moving.

Unfortunately, not all pain has a direct cause, meaning there is also no direct cure. It can be difficult to come to terms with the fact that there is no cure for your pain – it’s merely something you have to live with. However, at Ideal Spine, we want people suffering from chronic pain to know that a diagnosis of chronic pain is not a life-sentence for discomfort.

Once the tests are done, the next best steps are acceptance and finding coping mechanisms that help you fight off the pain. Education about your specific condition is a good start on the path to managing your pain, as is a conversation with your doctor about the numerous therapeutic options available. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you navigate your chronic pain.

Pain management is not a catch-all

The important thing to remember about pain management techniques is that there will likely not be one single treatment method that immediately eliminates your pain. You’ll probably need to test out a few different methods to start, then find a combination of a few that help effectively minimize your symptoms long-term.

Fortunately, there are many options for treating pain. Anti-inflammatory medications and steroid injections may help reduce inflammation and block pain for a limited time. These may be best used at home on days your condition flares up.

Heat and cold therapy and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulators (TENS) therapy may also help minimize pain at home. Alternating between heat and cold may stimulate blood flow and keep inflammation at bay, while TENS therapy uses electrical signals to interrupt pain signals within your body.

Other forms of therapy such as massage, acupuncture, physical therapy, and chiropractic may also be good choices to switch between to help manage pain. By using a combination of methods, you should be able to find a treatment plan that helps keep symptoms at a manageable level.

Pay attention to your mental health

People suffering from chronic pain may develop depression or anxiety over time due to the extra stress chronic conditions can cause. Poor mental health can lead to even more stress, which may make your pain worse. For this reason, it’s important to take care of not only your physical health, but also your mental health.

To relieve stress, try imagery control and meditative techniques such as guided breathing or yoga. Other forms of stress management like therapy or support groups may also help lighten the burden chronic pain places on your life.

Chiropractic may be a great option for managing pain

Chiropractic care, specifically, may be helpful at managing your chronic pain. Unlike medications, chiropractic is ideal for the long-term treatment chronic disorders require.

A Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) approach to chiropractic care involves spinal manipulation and realignment designed to promote total-body wellness. However, manipulations are not all that chiropractors can do for you.

Thanks to their expertise in spinal care and its relation to bodily wellness, your chiropractor also can help you create a pain management plan that will work best for your specific ailment and pain level. They may even teach you specific exercises to increase range-of-motion and build muscle strength. To find a chiropractor to potentially help you manage chronic pain symptoms, contact Ideal Spine.

Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.

Feeling Dizzy? Chiropractic May Help Your Vertigo!

We all get a little dizzy sometimes, whether it’s because we stood up too fast or we looked at an optical illusion for too long. The feeling of unsteadiness can be troubling, but these feelings are very little compared to the feelings of vertigo.

Vertigo is characterized by dizziness combined with a feeling of movement or a spinning sensation, even when you are standing perfectly still. Vertigo can be absolutely debilitating in everyday life because it can cause you to feel sick, make it difficult to walk, and even interrupt your vision and hearing.

There are a few different ways vertigo can begin, most of them dealing with the way your inner ear and brain communicate. Because of the neurological connection, chiropractic care may be the ideal course of treatment to cure your dizziness. Ideal Spine helps chiropractors learn and implement the necessary techniques to help patients overcome their vertigo by focusing on the spine and its relation to the body.

Causes and symptoms of vertigo

It is pretty easy to know if you are suffering from vertigo by looking for the telltale signs: dizziness accompanied by a spinning sensation. Vertigo may also cause a number of other symptoms, such as:

  • Headache;
  • Tinnitus;
  • Nausea;
  • Vomiting;
  • Sweating;
  • Swaying;
  • Inability to balance.

Vertigo is a common symptom in patients who have endured trauma to the neck or head; often, this is due to a disturbance in the nerve pathways exiting the spinal column.

More commonly, though, vertigo may be caused by damage or disruption in your vestibular system, or inner-ear. Ear infections, pressure changes, and the movement of particles within the inner-ear can all affect your level of dizziness.

The chiropractic approach to vertigo

Chiropractic care may be able to cure your symptoms of vertigo by doing different exercises or manipulations.

Chiropractic adjustments or manipulations may help alleviate a specific type of vertigo called cervical vertigo. This type of vertigo is caused by improperly-moving joints in the cervical spine following a neck injury, which results in incorrect information about movement and body position being sent to the brain. This misinformation may cause you to feel dizzy. Manipulations may be able to realign the joints and vertebrae in the cervical spine, correcting the nervous pathways and allowing for clearer communications.

A more common type of vertigo, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), is due to the movement of crystals around the inner-ear. These crystals are from your otolith organs and make you sensitive to gravity. They can shift out of the organ and into other parts of the vestibular labyrinth, altering your center of balance and briefly making you feel dizzy.

To help rectify BPPV, your chiropractor may use the Epley maneuver, which maneuvers your head into different positions to reposition the crystals inside the inner ear.

Your chiropractor may also teach you a few specific exercises to do at home that may be able to benefit the vestibular system and how it interacts with your brain.

Nobody should have to endure constant feelings of dizziness. At Ideal Spine, we train chiropractors to use Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP), a holistic approach to patient wellness. Visit us to find a provider near you and see how they may be able to help alleviate your vertigo symptoms.

Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.

Understanding the Burden of Pressure Put on Your Spine While Texting

We spend a lot of time playing games, checking emails, and messaging friends on our mobile devices each day. Although it’s nearly impossible to navigate today’s digital world without a cellphone, these devices can consume hours of our day. Apart from potential distraction and limited interaction with your surroundings, spending a lot of time on a phone or tablet has other negative consequences – specifically for your spine.

The constant bending of the neck to look down at a mobile device can put a tremendous amount of pressure on the cervical spine, leading to damage and pain. At Ideal Spine, we are aware of many patients who unknowingly cause muscle strain and disc degeneration due to the added stress on their necks. This damage is called “text neck” and may even require surgery to rectify.

Understanding the extreme pressure text neck adds to the spine can help you take steps to prevent it and maintain a healthy spine while enjoying entertainment on your device.

What kind of pressure does texting cause?

The average weight of a human head is around 10 to 12 pounds, and our spines are designed to withstand that pressure throughout the day. However, when your head is bent forward, the angle of your neck can alter the amount of pressure put on your spine, thanks to the gravitational pull on your head.

A recent study by spine surgeon Kenneth Hansraj showed that lowering your head at a 60-degree angle can put up to 60 pounds of pressure on the spine – nearly six times the pressure your spine normally supports! According to Hansraj’s study, tilting the head even 15 degrees can double the typical pressure, putting 27 pounds of pressure on the neck.

While bending your head forward isn’t normally an issue, what makes text neck dangerous is when this angled position is sustained for much longer periods of time. The significant amount of added pressure for hours each day can cause wear and tear on the neck: a problem that could be disastrous for children and teens, in particular.

Are you suffering from text neck?

Text neck can manifest in a number of different symptoms, depending on the type of damage being done to the spine. Patients may experience some or all of the following:

  • Chronic headaches;
  • Upper back pain;
  • Neck pain or stiffness;
  • Shoulder pain or stiffness;
  • Neurological symptoms like numbness or tingling down the arm.

These symptoms may be indicative of a few specific problems in the cervical spine, including muscle strain, disc degeneration, herniated discs, and even the reversal of your spine’s natural curvature. If you are experiencing discomfort, visit a chiropractor for help diagnosing the specific condition causing your pain.

How to prevent text neck

While it’s not realistic to stay off your mobile devices entirely to save your neck from pain, you should try to minimize the amount of time you spend on your device each day to prevent text neck from developing. When you do use your phone, try to keep your head in a neutral position, holding the ears in line with the shoulders and the shoulders rolled back.

Additionally, take breaks from your phone or device throughout the day. Shift your attention up to eye level or take a walk to give your neck a break.

Treatments for texting-related neck pain

Some cases of text neck may be more significant than others due to the amount of damage done to the neck and specific underlying condition, but there are a few treatment methods that may help minimize pain across the board.

Alternating ice and heat therapy may help reduce inflammation in the area and stimulate blood flow to loosen stiff, strained muscles. Additionally, a few simple exercises like neck and shoulder rotations may help relieve tension in the neck and reduce pain. These exercises can also strengthen your neck muscles to allow it to support more pressure.

Chiropractic adjustments may also be able to help minimize your symptoms of pain and stiffness in the neck. Using a Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) approach to patient wellness, chiropractors trained through Ideal Spine may be able to ease discomfort caused by herniated discs, disc degeneration, and other conditions caused by text neck.

Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.