Browsing: Back Pain

Bulged Disk – The Unspoken Truth!

Is the news of a blown disk really significant? According to a study conducted years ago by Maureen C. Jensen and Jeffrey S. Ross and published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, not at all. Many other studies have been repeated over the last two decades and the results have been duplicated and validated. The shocking news was that half the adults, according to this study, had a bulge in their disk. The fascinating and surprising fact is that none of the individuals experienced any back pain. None whatsoever.

Yet most doctors will send you for some sort of imaging or screening, to provide to you proof of a bulged or herniated disk, when you come to see them for lower back pain. As has been shown in the study, this condition apparently exists in most of us anyway. There might not be any relationship between a bulged or herniated disk and pain in your lower back, at least based on scientific facts. If we go to scientists such as physicians seeking advice and treatment, we should at least receive scientific evidence of the suspected reason for our pains.

If an X-ray shows a broken bone, you would suspect you have broken your bone. If you have severe pain in your leg after experiencing a fall, chances are high you broke a bone. To validate this hypothesis you take an image of your bone. However, this is the exact finding of this study, rules out the direct correlation between lower back pain and bulging disks .

Here are the concluding remarks of the study.

“On MRI examination of the lumbar spine, many people without back pain have disk bulges or protrusions but not extrusions. frequently be coincidental. ”

Coincidental? That is not the term my doctor used when we observed my MRI results. Which raises the greater question, why send me to have an MRI in the first place. His reason at the time was to verify that it was not a bulk disk. Perhaps my physician was not updated by the latest research studies. The unfortunate truth is that most doctors are not.

MRI and CAT scans are still called for, even though they have been ruled out as unnecessary. Ultimately the results of your condition will be the same whether you had imaging and discovered a rolled disk or just went about your business knowing that you have a fifty percent chance of having a blown disk anyway, pain or not.

How's your back?

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Back Surgery and Its Different Types

Are you suffering from severe back pain that has not relieved through non-surgical treatments such as physical therapy, medications and steroid injections? If other remedies have failed to provide relief from long-term chronic backache then surgery may be the only option for you.

However, the surgery can not be considered as an initial treatment for back pain. In most cases, backache tends to be temporary and can be managed by using non-surgical approaches and self-care. Exercise, physical therapy, and acupuncture are usually successful in treating back and neck pain.

Unfortunately, there is no option left for chronic pain sufferers other than going under the knife.

Back surgery is usually recommended to only a small percentage of cases. In particular, surgical treatment for back may be recommended if a person has severe back pain caused by wear and tear; or pain that continues to worsen else other treatments; has back instability from injury; has acute arm or leg pain caused by nerve compression in the spine; Egypt has nerve problems.

Back Surgery Options

There are several different types of back surgery. The type you choose depends on your back condition.

Discectomy: Also called open discectomy it is the most common surgical treatment for a ruptured or herniated disc in the spinal canal causing the pressure on the nerve. In this type of procedure, a surgeon removes one or more of your affected discs through a small cut over the center of your back. This relieves the pressure on the nerves.

Spinal Disc Replacement: This procedure is relatively new and is still not widely used by the surgeons. Spinal disc replacement aims to restore disc height and tie painful movement between two vertebrae. While performing a replacement replacement, your surgeon will remove the degenerated or injured disks and replace them with artificial ones.

Laminectomy: This procedure involves the removal of parts of the bone, bone spurs, or ligaments overlying the spinal canal. In a laminectomy, a surgeon cut opens the back and removes or disables the lamina, a plate along the vertebra that covers the spinal canal, in order to enlarge the spinal canal to allow more space for the nerves to pass. This relieves nerve pressure caused by spinal stenosis.

Foraminotomy: While performing this operation, your surgeon will carry out a keyhole procedure to widen your foramina- the bony holes through which nerve roots exit the spine. This expanded space reduces pressure on your spinal nerves caused by the inter-vertebral foramen, thereby relieving pain.

Vertebroplasty: During this procedure, your surgeon will first make a small cut on your back. Then, using X-rays as guidance, he / she will slowly inject cement-like mixture into your compressed vertebrae to stabilize the spine and treat pain.

In a similar surgical procedure, called kyphoplasty, a balloon-like device is inserted in an attempt to widen the compressed vertebrae before injecting the bone cement.

Spinal Fusion: Also known as spondylodesis, spinal fusion is the most common surgery for chronic back pain. This operation is aimed at treating broken spinal bones (vertebrae) and increasing the strength of the spine by fusing two or more vertebrae together.

In a spiral fusion, a surgeon joins two or more spinal bones together using metal hardware, including a bone graft, and special metal scaffolding made of rods, screws or plates.

A spinal fusion is typically done to treat spondylolisthesis (unstable spine), or spinal weakness or instability.

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Spinal Decompression Naturally for Bulging Disks

Physical Therapists have been using spinal decompression methods for many years, and now doctors are starting to advertise spinal decompression with computerized decompression tables.

Spinal decompression is basically an old method of stretching your spine. Ancient civilizations used it as one of their torture routines, by tying your feet and hands and stretching the area your body to the limit, to either get information or satisfy their revenge needs. By stretching your spine, more space is created temporarily between the vertebrae. This action in theory allows either a bulging disk or a herniated disk, to retract to its original shape, thus reducing any stress it has on the spinal nerve.

Theory I claim, because if you think about it logically, a forced stretch will not leave the spaces between you vertebrae at that position. Your intervertebral space will return to its normal levels. The missing factor is the need for this action to be performed is a natural, prolonged treatment, one that not only stretches your spine, but is complemented with a routine offering the area a support structure that will provide the necessary space naturally.

You can not go the clinic every day and lie on a specially designed table that might also cause damage if not performed correctly. You can, however, reach the same results at home using your own body weight and the wonders of gravity. You can achieve this simply by hanging upside down from a bar, or by using an inversion tables that are readily available for that specific purpose.

Your body contracts during the day due to the pull of gravity. Lengthening of the spine occurs naturally when you lie down at night to sleep. If you measure your height in the morning just when you wake up and again just before you lie down, you will notice a significant change in your height. With twenty three vertebrae in your body all being compressed due to gravity, you will lose up to an inch in height during normal daily activity.

Astronauts, who spent longer periods in micro gravity, noticed a large change in their heights upon their return back to earth. This same concept is adopted in spinal decompression. A table was designed to stretch your body using mechanical tension. I went through such a technique during my battle with back pain. However, walking out of the facility and for the next two months I felt much more lower back pain than I did prior to entering that chamber.

I believe in natural remedies. You can achieve the same results with my more control. If you are capable of hanging upside down from a bar, such as ones found in children's playgrounds, try hanging upside down and test the feeling. Besides the immediate pain relief, you may achieve some long term relief and an adjustment to a tight back.

If you can not perform this task, as it does require some physical ability, invest in an inverse table. Use it daily for a few minutes. The results have been proven, and the feeling that comes with it is worth every pain. Only through a routine routine can you achieve proper posture and strength in you spine to eliminate any bulging disks .

How's your back?

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Does Chiropractic Work?

Natural Remedies Questioned

Does Chiropractic Work? This is a question that is often heard from those who are on the fence wondering if they should try – usually as a last resort – chiropractic treatment.

It's not been that many years ago when the validity of chiropractic treatments and chiropractors at large was under question. In the past 50 to 80 years, everything has moved under the microscope , so to speak.

As the medical world has become more and more symptom and prescription oriented, the more natural remedies have been discredited and cast aside. If it can not be validated in a laboratory, or in a scientific study, it is often dismissed by the traditional medical world.

Prescription Drugs Mask Problems

It's a known fact that the pharmaceutical companies and the American Medical Association work in tandem to underamine alternative medicine (such as chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathic, and naturopathic treatments). Sad to say, but money is the motive for such actions. It's true that people who are well and healthy have little need for prescriptions or multiple doctor office visits.

What is even sadder is the fact that prescriptions drugs do not work! At least they do not work to eliminate a physical malady. Drugs mask the problem and are often addictive. The patient takes a pill to lower cholesterol one day and then must take it again the next day, and the next and the next. So has the problem been taken care of? The real question should be: Does traditional medicine work?

The Newly Self-Educated Public

The good news is that due to the Internet and other mass communication, the general public is becoming more aware of viable alternatives to traditional medicine. They are stepping up to take full responsibility of their own health; they are becoming self educated. (And likewise, they want their children – the next generation – to do the same.)

Back to the original question: Does chiropractic work?

Chiropractors Do Not Treat Disease

In order to answer the question correctly, one must keep in mind that chiropractors do not treat disease. They do not treat symptoms. And they do not prescribe medicine. Their sole intent is to correct any nerve interference that may be present in the body.

This nerve interference is also known as subluxation . Such interference may have been caused by physical, chemical, or emotional dynamics. A subluxation works to short-circuit certain organs in the body. Once the short-circuit problem has been resolved, health and wellness can be restored.

Translated, this means the treatment is directed at the root of the problem, rather than masking the problem as in traditional medical practices. Subsequently, chiropractic treatments often cause the patient to experience a greater sense of overall well-being.

Because Americans have become pill-grabbing, pill-poppers, we have lost the full awareness of optimum health. Most people believe if they can go a few days without a headache, or an upset stomach, they are healthy. Healthy is more than simply the absence of disease.

Chiropractic Maintenance Can Be a Life-Changer

Does chiropractic work?

It works in so many ways it's difficult to cover all the bases in this short article. Suffice to say that those who are ready and willing to take charge of their own health are ready to seek out a nearby chiropractor and learn more about how regular chiropractic maintenance can prove to be a life-changer.

If you believe it's time to enjoy optimum health rather than simply existing for a few symptom-free days at a time, you can find out for yourself if chiropractic works!

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Is Chiropractic Safe?

Difference Between Chiropractic And Traditional Medicine

People want to know: Is Chiropractic Safe? Perhaps an individual has heard about chiropractic and how it might possible help him, but he's unsure. He knows so little about the treatment and how it works. Sometimes he's heard something negative about chiropractic. Sometimes he even heard that negative report from a “respected” individual in the medical field.

In order to have this question answered clearly one must first look at the main difference between traditional medicine and chiropractic. While traditional medical practices treat symptoms, chiropractic treats the root cause of a possible malfunction in the body. The two are quite opposite of one another.

Harmful Effects of Traditional Medicine

Because of the forceful advertising of, and media attention to, so-called miracle drugs, along with highly publicized searches for the cure , most Americans have come to believe there is no other health care available. In addition, many are convinced that prescription drugs are harmless. The truth is that the majority of drugs prescribed by doctors has multiple harmful side effects, sometimes resulting in loss of life. Studies such as the one cited here are legion.

The human cost of medical errors is high. Based on the findings of one major study, medical errors kill some 44,000 people in US hospitals each year. Another study puts the number much higher, at 98,000. Even using the lower estimate, more people die from medical mistakes each year than from highway accidents, breast cancer, or AIDS.

In spite of these undeniable statistics, few people ask the question, Is today's modern medical care safe?

A Closer Look

Let's take a closer look at chiropractic and answer the question once and for all: is chiropractic safe?

The promise of chiropractic is much different from what we in our society have grown accustomed to in the field of modern medicine. Chiropractic is not designed to find a cure for a malady or disease. It is designed to allow the “innate” potential of our body's recuperative powers to function at 100%. The chiropractor works with the body rather than against it. The chiropractor treats the whole person not just a symptomatic ailment.

The common concept of chiropractic by the general public is a method by which back or neck pain can be alleviated. While that is a true fact – and thousands, if not tens of thousands of individuals have found relief from such pain – chiropractic is so much more.

Nerve System as Master Controller

A chiropractor examines a patient to discover whether there are any vertebral subluxations. (Also known as spinal nerve interference.) The chiropractor knows that the nerve system is the master controller of the entire body.

Essentially, the human body is created to heal itself and if conditions are right, that will happen. The chiropractor can correct any spinal nerve interference with a spinal adjustment. Once the nerve communication is restored – once there is free flow through the nerve system – the body can indeed work to heal itself.

Chiropractors are specifically trained to perform spinal adjustments. These adjustments use a specific force in a defined direction to release the vertebra back to its normal position. Chiropractic adjustments are safe and pain-free.

Once the spine is back to its normal position, once the nerve system is enjoying free flow, the patient almost always expresses how much better he or she feels.

Treatment of the whole person and seeking out the root cause of a physical ailment makes much more sense than taking harmful drugs and submitting to invasive (expensive) surgeries.

Back to our original question: Is chiropractic safe? In contrast to the sobering statistics stated above, millions of people enjoy chiropractic treatments with only a few who ever make a complaint. The results speak for themselves.

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MRI for Bulged or Slipped Disks, Is It Really Needed?

Do you really need an MRI or a CAT scan for your boiled disk or slipped disc?

This is the discussion I was having with a distant relative yesterday at a BBQ at a friend back yard. The discussion immediately caught the attention of others who were standing nearby, and the circle larger to a few current or past back pain sufferers.

I was making the argument that MRI's have been thrown out the window, and that the College of American Physicians announced last year, that more damage is caused by having this type of a scan than any good. This recommendation came after major studies comparing patient outcomes with screening or without. It was proven that the ultimate results of back pain sufferers, will be equal with or without screening.

The discussions bounced around with each person's personal experience. With typical stories I have been listening all along. But then I was floored by one story.

One of the women in the group had lingering back pain, which she could not get rid of for over a year. She had performed a CAT scan a couple of times, by the order of her physician, which resulted in negative findings. She persisted and insured the doctor send her for an MRI. As I was about to open my mouth to say that another unnecessary procedure was called for, she continued to tell me that the MRI discovered a cancerous tumor that was growing in her spine, and if it was not for the MRI she would not be standing there today.

So there I was, stuck with this interesting dilemma. Do you or do not have an MRI for back pain?

After pondering about it for a while, I would like to provide my personal point of view, please share yours if you would like. Mind you, I am not a medical professional; my background is in molecular biology, however, I have researched this topic and am glad to share my knowledge with you.

My feeling is to follow your intuition. Our inner voice might be driven by forces we are not aware off, but is usually the voice of our truth. If you have a feeling something is happening in your back that is not of a normal nature, fight until you discover and understand the cause. If you know and feel the condition will pass by itself, or you can eliminate it, by simply changing your lifestyle and routine, follow that path. Whatever path you choose, take some action to correct the situation and get rid of the pain.

Hows' Your Back?

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Yoga for Low Back Pain?

If you suffer from lower back pain, you may feel that the pain is simply a part of aging.

However, this is not true. If you look after your body you'll likely be able to enjoy a long and active life.

You do not have to deal with back pain every time that you do a little yard work or rearrange your furniture. You may have read about using natural back pain remedies to heal your back. Sometimes these natural cures include exercise, like yoga. The practice of yoga has many moves that can be beneficial in preventing and relieving lower back pain.

Common advice given to people suffering from back pain is that the abdominal and back muscles simply need to be strengthened. Although this is probably true, you should not forget that these muscles also need to be lengthened. Additionally, exercise and stretching should not only focus on the muscles in the center of the back and middle of the stomach, but also on the muscles on the sides of the trunk as well. Yoga will not only strengthen all of these muscles, but lengthen them too. These stronger, longer muscles will protect the back from injury.

More importantly Yoga is good for back pain because it corrects muscles imbalances in the body. If you have exercised the abdominal muscles but neglected the back muscles, poor posture and weak muscles will result. This poor posture will put stress on your body and set you up for repeated back injuries.

If you are susceptible to back injuries, you may be tempted to work only on the abdominal and back muscles. Although it is good to be strong in the core muscles of the body, weak leg muscles and pelvic muscles can also contribute to poor posture, causing stress on the pelvis and lower back.

To effectively strengthen the body, it should be treated as a single unit, with all muscles being equally exercised and stretched. If one regularly practices a yoga routine, muscle imbalances can be corrected. The poses will lengthen the muscles and bring the entire body into correct alignment. The back will begin to develop a normal, healthy lumbar curve. A yoga routine will work all of the muscles of the body, keeping one or two sets of muscles from ruining the alignment of the whole body.

Before you begin using yoga for your back pain, you should keep in mind a few things. First, if you have problems with your lumbar disks, you need to exercise caution with poses that include forward bends, especially those that include twisting along with the bends. These moves can aggravate the damage to your lumbar disks and should be avoided until you have progressed beyond the starting phase. The second thing to remember is that you should pay close attention at all times to your body when exercising. Even during the transitions, you need to keep proper form and focus on how your muscles feel. Never push beyond the level at which you are comfortable to avoid hurting yourself. Third, you need to remember that some posts take consistent work to achieve. You may need to patiently work your way up to more difficult positions. Never try to rush your progress.

If you are currently experiencing pain from a recent back injury, you should not attempt to improve your strength, flexibility or technique in yoga. You should go very slowly and gently and use the yoga moves to work the soreness out of the muscles.

You do not have to accept regular pain in the lower back as an inescapable part of aging. You can get out of bed every morning moving easily. By practicing yoga regularly, the muscles of your back and your body body can be long, strong and healthy.

Practicing yoga is not necessarily the fabled fountain of youth. However, the flexibility and strength that yoga can bring to your body can make it seem so.

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Finding a Chiropractor Online for Back Pain

Many people sustain injuries due to car accidents or because of recurrent arthritis, back pain and headaches. A nearby physician or the doctors that are stocked in the medicine cabinet are merely ineffective sources of relief. What people do not know is that their pain and other discomfort can be relieved much more efficiently and effectively if they contact a local chiropractor.

These days, the society is benefitting from chiropractors in a variety of ways. People can seek help from them when it comes to lead a healthy life, while they can seek relief from aches and pains with their help. In fact, the rate of improvement with traditional treatments is known to be slower, while chiropractic therapy has become popular for offering quicker results.

The fact of the matter is that chiropractic therapy has not yet been established as deeply and broadly as a traditional remedy for back pain and other ailments. Thus unlike the huge number of traditional doctors, there are not as many chiropractors out there. So, for people suffering from back pain or other musculoskeletal problems should begin searching for a chiropractor near their area if they intend to consult one.

A good way of avoiding a hit-or-miss approach is by searching for a source that can provide reliable information regarding local chiropractic practitioners. To ensure the information available is actually valid, it should be made sure that it is detailed and up to date.

In the early days, when people wanted to check further details of a chiropractor, this would mean going through printed yellow pages and looking through some other source. Luckily, this task has been made much easier and simpler ever since the advent of the internet. Today people can ideally get a list of chiropractors in their area simply by going online.

For those who require additional information on the potential chiropractors they are seeking even have the option of reading reviews. Many chiropractors even have online profiles that offer much more details about them and their practice so that people can determine if they are useful to them.

Often a single chiropractor directory, like chirodirectory.com, may not have all the information on every chiropractor and this can be concern when people are not able to find a chiropractor near their area. Consulting different directories can help people, and they are sure to come across several chiropractors nearby.

Many people are turning towards it as a career and chiropractor therapy has is gradually becoming a popular treatment. So finding a chiropractor in different areas should not be a problem.

To achieve the best possible experience when searching for chiropractors online, people should even make use of the search functionality of directories like chirodirectory.com, chirohub.com, etc. Often people are even allowed to type in their zip code when they are searching for a chiropractor, and this specifics the search radius. Once the results for the nearest chiropractors in the area are presented, people can then choose the right local chiropractor for their back pain.

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Good Posture Can Prevent Bad Back Pain

Remember your mother or your teacher snapping at you to sit up straight and to stop slouching? It might have been annoying, but, as it turns out, they were right to correct you. Maintaining proper posture is the most important factor in preventing or reducing lumbar issues. It's also the simplest thing you can do to help reduce your own neck or back pain.

Maintaining healthy posture is important for keeping your strong and stable. When you slouch or slump, it puts additional pressure and strain on the muscles and ligaments that maintain balance. This in turn can lead to fatigue, back pain, muscle strains, headaches, weakened abdominal muscles and other issues. Bad posture can also cause movement or displacement of inter-vertebral discs, a common source of chronic back pain in chiropractic patients. It can also result in weakening of various muscle groups that help maintain correct posture, which can make it even harder to sit or stand properly.

Good posture, meanwhile, has many health benefits. It improves your airflow and helps maintain muscle strength in your torso. Good posture prevents strains, and is healthy for the muscular and skeletal systems. It also looks better – standing or sitting upright makes a person appear confident, put together, and assertive to others. You also look taller, thinner, and younger when standing up straight. Your good post just may get you noticed!

What is Good Posture?

Contrary to popular belief, sitting or standing upright with your shoulders and head thrown back and your spelling kept straight with your legs locked is not good posture. In fact, holding this position regularly is as harmful as slouching. Instead, a proper posture will maintain the natural curves of the spell.

The human spell has three natural curves:

– the cervical curve, a forward curve at the neck

– the thoracic curve, a backwards curve at the upper back

– the lumbar curve, a forward curve at the lower back

Proper posture will lead your back to naturally fall into this position, rather than exaggerating the curves and pulling on the back by slouching, or trying to straighten the curves and leading to stain.

Maintain Good Posture

To have proper posture while standing, you should hold your chest high while you have your shoulders back and relaxed. Pull in your abdomen and buttocks while keeping your feet parallel and with weight balanced evenly between them. Another way to help position yourself yourself properly is to keep your ears, shoulders, and hips aligned together. Doing exercises, stretches, or yoga is a good way to strengthen the muscles used to maintain proper posture. If you've been slouching, these muscles may have become weakened, making it difficult to maintain your upright position.

Meanwhile, good dated post involves keeping your neck, back, and heels aligned and feet flat on the floor. You should sit all the way back in the chair and use the chair back for support. Avoid bending or leaning forward, or natural slouching. Use of a lumbar pillow can help you maintain this position even if you forget about your post or grow fatigued. Sitting this way reduces strains on your back, which can help prevent or alleviate back pain.

Good posture is not just something that adults used as an excuse to yell at you during your childhood. It makes you look and feel better, and helps maintain muscle and skeletal health. Having good posture can keep you from suffering from back pain. So remember, sit up straight, stand up straight, and stop slouching. You do not even have to tell mom she was right.

If you have questions about your post or back pain, visit a NJ chiropractor for a thorough analysis of your spell.

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Three Easy, Unknown, Ways to Stop Your Back Pain

Nearly six billion people will experience back pain at some point in their lives. Unfortunately, when that many people are affected, it might not be a matter of “if” you will have back pain but “when.” The good news is that most back pain is preventable: research estimates that nearly 85% of back injuries are from repetitive misuse. Here are three easy steps to eliminate back pain.

1. DO NOT BEND AFTER SLEEPING

The spelling consists of disks in between each vertebra, which allow for movement and cushion. These discs are primarily made of fluid, which is lost during the day and reabsorbed while you sleep, in a process known as disc imbibition. In fact, you lose up to 19 mm of height each day from the loss of disc fluid! After lying down for 2-3 hours, the discs reabsorb their lost fluid and are at full size. When they are full size, the potential stresses placed on the disks are increased by 300%. As a result, it is imperative not to flex / bend your spine for one hour after you have rested for at least 2-3 hours. If you must bend during this time, try squatting with a straight back. Avoiding flexion of the spine after 2-3 hours of sleep is a great way to protect your back. Please understand, that I'm not saying you can not bend during these aforementioned times, I'm saying it is especially important that you bend the correct way.

2. STAND UP CORRECTLY FROM SITTING

Standing up correctly from the seated position is one of the most important things you can do to protect your back. It is also one of the easiest. Most people use their low backs to assist them in getting up from the seated position. This is wrong! Think about how many times you get up from sitting. Every time you use your low back to stand, you are flexing (bending) your spine and placing unnecessary stress onto it. Here is the easy solution: before you get up from sitting, scoot all the way to the edge of your laid surface, keep your back straight, and get up using your legs. This may feel strange at first, but should become second nature after a few days. One tip to get started: use your arms to assist your legs in the process. Place your hands into fists and use them to push up off the enclosed surface, while using your legs. Do not place your fists on your legs. Again, at no time will you flex the low back or use it to assist you in the standing process.

Be sure to not bend your spell-keeping it neutral, as you sit down, too. Simply reverse this standing process, and use the same technique to sit down properly.

3. PUSH AND PULL OBJECTS THROUGH YOUR LOW BACK

The safest way to push or pull an object is to direct the force of the movement through your low back. I will qualify the low back as the area between the bottom of your rib cage and the top of your hips. It is within this area that you should visualize a direct line of pull going into this region or out from the low back if you are pushing.

You may apply this same concept to opening doors. Each time you open a door, try to open the door with the force directed through the low back. People typically open doors with the force directed to the right or left of their body, which creates a matching torque. Try directing the force of the door through your low back instead.

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Why You Have Back Pain and What You Can Do About It: The Dangers of Sitting

There is a pandemic in today's society. This pandemic affects 5.6 billion people, or around eighty percent of the world's population, and it's probably not what you think. No, I'm not referring to AIDS, West Nile virus, or H1N1. I'm referring to low back pain. Yes, low back pain.

Low back pain costs the United States over $ 5 billion in health care costs and forces employees to lose 93 million work days annually. Why? People do not know how to protect their backs. Eighty-five percent of back problems are from misuse. The chair you are sitting on to read this text is probably hurting your back, and you do not know it. In fact, sitting likely causes most people's back pain. Let me explain: there is a specific correlation between excessive sitting and disc herniations (also known as bulging discs) of the back. Repetitive sitting damages the back more than physically demanding tasks, and places your body at a greater risk for any low back disorder, not just a disc herniation. Your spine is composed of vertebrae ie the bones, and disks in between each vertebra that act as a cushion. These discs can move out of position and cause pain – this is a disc herniation.

Did I make you never want sit again? I hope not. That's not my goal. My goal is to provide you with a way to combat the negative effects of excessive sitting. So, what can you do about it? Be aware of your actions. Stand up and stretch every 20-30 minutes.

Specifically, stand up straight and reach your hands toward the ceiling. While standing, inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. During the exhalation, stretch higher toward the ceiling. Next, with your palms facing up, bringing your arms down to the side of your body. Then, you are holding a pencil between your shoulder blades and squeeze them together to prevent the pencil from falling. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. During this exhalation, hold the contraction of your shoulder blades together for 10 seconds. Relax. You have successfully completed the basic stretch break to combat the effects of prolonged seating. This entire stretch break will not take more than 30 seconds, yet its benefit will last exponentially longer. Repeat this stretch every 20-30 minutes, or as needed.

The purpose of this stretch is to get your body out of the hunched, flexed position that sitting induces and force it into extension.

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Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF): Risks of Spinal Surgery

Spinal fusion is an invasive surgical procedure performed to provide stability to the spinal in the case of degenerative disc disease, nerve impingement and / or vertebral movement (spondylolisthesis). The surgery entails the removal of a disc or portion of a disc and the placement of a bone graft in the disc space that will fuse the vertebrae together. Additional grafts and hardware may be used on the outside of the column column for extra stability.

Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) is one type of spinal fusion surgery often performed to treat degenerative disc disease in cases where a lot of disc height has been lost. Anterior fusion is performed through an incision in the stomach. There are other approaches that dictate approaching through the back or side, but the anterior approach is favored sometimes for its avoidance of back muscles and spinal nerves.

ALIF is generally not performed on people with spinal instability caused by spondylolisthesis (vertebral fracture and movement) or tall disc spaces. In these cases, a posterior approach may be combined with ALIF to provide additional fusion sites.

Risks

Every type of surgery comes with unique risks. Risks that all types of fusion surgeries share are failure of fusion, bleeding, infection and scar tissue.

Anterior fusion carries unique risks due to its approach from the front of the body. One potential complication after surgery is incisional hernia. A hernia is present when part of the lining of the abdominal cavity, called the peritoneum, pushes through a hole or weak part in the connective tissue surrounding abdominal muscles and forms a sac. Incision of the abdomen can cause such a weak spot or hole. A hernia may be visibly protrude and retract when coughing or lifting. If it is painful to the touch or does not retract when pushed inward, surgery will likely be needed to patch the weak spot in the abdomen. Parts of organs can become trapped in the hole as the sac grows and blood supply can become cut off, strangling that part of the organ.

For males seeking fusion of the L5-S1 disc space, retrograde ejaculation is a concern. The anterior approach to this spinal segment puts the surgeon's tools in close proximity with nerves supplying a valve that routes ejaculate from the body. If the nerve supply is damaged and the valve does not open, the ejaculate will be directed to the bladder. While this does not pose risks to the man's health or feeling of pleasure, it provides distinct complications with conception. An exact rate of accident is unknown, but could be 5% or higher, according to Spine.org, for men seeking anterior fusion at the L5-S1 segment.

A minimally-invasive form of ALIF is available that requires a smaller incision and the use of a laparoscope, or camera, that guides the surgeon's tools. While this procedure generally promises shorter recovery time and less scarring, it also poses a unique risk to the great blood vessels, the vena cava and aorta, that lay over the spine and travel to the lower body. Normal ALIF may cause damage to these vessels at a 1-2% incidence rate; risk increases with laparoscopic anterior fusion as the surgeon has limited view and mobility inside the incision pathway. Interference with these blood vessels is a major concern as it causes excessive bleeding.

When considering surgery, it is always important to weigh the risks against the possible benefits. While most surgeons boast fusion rates of 95% and higher, studies exist that put the rate much lower. A small study with 85 participants found that overall fusion rate was 80%. The study also specified results by level of fusion; rate of failure was much higher (31%) at the L3-L4 level than at the L5-S1 level (16%). These are all factors to consider when deciding whether surgery and what type of surgery is worth the risk for your unique situation. More on the above study can be found at http://www.mendeley.com/research/anterior-lumbar-interbody-fusion/ .

A Last Resort

Any type of surgery is a last resort, yet not all ghost surgeons are hesitant to prescribe fusions. Fusions are mainly performed to relieve pain from degenerating spinal discs. Have you exhausted all other treatment options for your condition?

Unless you are showing signs of major nerve damage (such as impaired bowel and bladder function), surgery should be a long way off. First, months of physical therapy should be performed to strengthen the core muscles that support the spine. You should be tested for muscle imbalances and postural distortions that could have caused excess pressure on the affected disc. A chiropractor or osteopath should check your spelling for misalignment and resolve any if found.

Inversion therapy can be pursued at home to increase disc space, or decompression treatments can be taken from a chiropractor with a decompression machine in his or her office. Decompression treatments may or may not be covered by insurance, but they usually cost around $ 2,000 total without insurance. This is less than the out-of-pocket cost of spinal surgery for most people with insurance.

When considering various options for back pain treatment, be sure you're informed of the risks and benefits. Anterior lumbar interbody fusion poses unique risks that should be understood before anything is signed off on.

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What You Need To Know About Pain In Lower Right Back

The issue of people experiencing a significant amount of pain in the lower right back is not new and should be treated with a lot of seriousness. The best way to assess this is by at least understanding the causes of the pain. The structure of the lower right back contains a mixture of pelvic and spinal bones. A breakdown of these bones reveals that there is the pelvis, the five lumbar vertebrae and the sacrum. With regard to the pain, the lumbar spine has been known to cause a larger portion of the pain based on the massive role it plays in providing support to the back.

A number of scientific studies revolving around the lower right back pain revealed that the pain was basically a combination of a sacro iliac joint that tightens. It may also be caused when some spinal joints tighten as well as when the pelvis is out of balance since, this will trigger certain points in the quadratus lumborum. In some cases, the pain is caused by one of these elements or a combination of all.

Otherwise known as a flat bone, the sacro iliac joint does not have a disc as part of its structure. This means that there is less protection for the joint that making the area quite intolerable to excessive strains which we're constantly advised to avoid. Ideally, what happens, is that when the joint tightens, the ligaments and muscles located around the area will also tighten, resulting in the pain which can as well extend to the back and the buttock area. Other causes of the lower right back pain include an offense or overuse of the joints, ligaments and muscles. There is also the issue of compression fractures, which is quite common in post-menopausal women. It is also evident in men and women who have used corticosteroid on a long-term basis.

The pain can also come about as a result of pressure on one of the nerve roots. Causes of this pressure may include osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, a herniated disc, fractures and spinal deformities. It is important to be aware of these causes of the pain to know how best to respond with effective treatment methods. They say that prevention is better than cure, which is why you need to understand the available prevention measures and spare yourself from the excruciating back pain.

Prevention measures will range from having to exercise in order to keep the back healthy and strong to learning how to lift objects safely while at the same time protecting your back. You should also learn to protect your back while sitting, bending, sleeping and even when walking, especially when you wear high-heeled shoes. Try to maintain a healthy body weight to avoid stressing your back, and if you're a smoker, you should work on quitting. This is because smoking has been known to increase the risk of bone loss while at the same time increasing the sensitivity to pain thus making smokers very vulnerable to the pain in lower right back .

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The Best Treatment for Back Pain Caused By Traffic Accidents

Everyone driving a car can easily experience an accident on the road. In worse cases, these accidents can be life threatening, but in other times, only minor scratches are obtained and people involved walks away unscathed, or so it sees.

Drivers or passers may only feel stiff and shocked after a traffic accident and appear to be uninjured. However, it is not uncommon for traffic accident injuries to be unfelt for weeks or months to come. When people begin to sense their pain, it usually starts in their back or neck and is accompanied by tension and headache. The symptoms can worsen over time and eventually prevent him or her from performing normally. Many people suffer these types of pain without even realizing that it has responded from a seemingly small traffic accident. These people go on without proper diagnostics and resort to using painkillers to lessen their pain. If have recently been into an accident, you could have well to visit a doctor who specialize in soft tissue and structural damage as such with traffic accident injuries.

Visit Your Doctor If You Experience …

  • Extreme pain anywhere
  • Pain when you go to the bathroom
  • Trouble breathing or taking deep breaths
  • Persistent Tingling and Numbness anywhere

Treatment for Back Pain Resulting From a Car Crash

When people start experiencing unbearable pain, the only immediate thought is it to find immediate relief. But for those who have recently started feeling back pains, you need to find a way to increase your pain fast. The two efficient treatments for traffic accident related type of pain are massage therapy and chiropractic therapy.

Massage therapy can provide quick relief for your pain and speed ups the healing process for the muscles and tissues. Chiropractic therapy works as a treatment for your back pain through adjustments on your spine. This process takes the pressure off the joints on your spine and helps the nerves to calm down and significantly lessen your pain.

Your treatment can start the next day after your accident, or as soon as you feel that there is something wrong with your condition. A chiropractic doctor will use his hands to help the joints of your spine achieve more movement.

After a traffic accident, you might be experiencing a whiplash or a condition where it hurts to turn your head left and right. A chiropractic doctor will move your neck as far as you can tolerate the pain and then make adjustments in your spine joints to make it better.

Chiropractic care and therapy can help with different types of pain experienced including those coming from traffic accidents. It would be best to have a chiropractor exam you, your children and other passengers once you've experienced a traffic accident to ensure that any hidden injuries will be discovered before they cause larger health issues in the future.

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Health Insurance – It Is A Necessity

Why do you need health insurance?

Here is just one reason and trust me I can tell you that I have been in so much pain that the only thing that would cure my pain was Health Insurance.

Have you ever had such a bad back pain that you were unable to get out of bed? Have you been told by your doctor that only anti-inflammatory pain killers are the only way to go? Did you ever feel like nobody understood your pain and that your boss could swear that you were lying just to have a few sick days? Did you know that it is the one main reason why people all over the world mainly stay at home from work?

If only you could turn back time, you would never have picked up that box that was just that little bit too heavy? Or who knew that when you were keen on doing those odd jobs, or renovations around the house that you would end up in bed not being able to move anywhere up to a week? And all you wanted to do was re-decorate your home. Or doing a simple thing like lifting your one year old out of it's crib, and then bang, someone needs to lift you out of bed? Is not it funny that the things we enjoy doing we can not do anymore, like jog?

The doctors will tell you to be more careful, and here, take some anti-inflammatory pain killers and you will be right! Yes, you'll be right for a little while until it happens again. Then what? Another 5 days flat out on your back! If only I had Health Insurance, you ask your self? Maybe I would not have had this pain for as long as I have? What if I join up now? I feel better now, I do not need it? I'll just wait a while, but I doubt I'll be in pain again, it only happened to me twice. It will not happen again will it?

Right now, I'm just talking from experience and I thought I was invincible until it happened to me again and again. The doctors bills left a lot to be desired and seeing specialist after specialist, and not to mention the chiropractic and physiotherapy bills.

I felt like I was working just to pay the doctors. I am talking about my back pain, but for some of you it could be a knee injury or a broken collar bone from that car accident you had a few years ago. Whatever it may be, Health Insurance is certainly the way to go, even if you need to have some dental work done. Let's face it, most of us do not know how to look after ourselves, but if you had Health Insurance it is assurance that when something does happen, then we are taken care of. So what are you waiting for?

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