Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep 

Bottom Line:

Staying up late one night usually only results in feeling a little tired the next day, but when this happens day after day, it can really start to negatively affect your life. Research has shown that a lack of proper sleep can result in irritability, increased stress, a weakened immune system, and even joint pains. However, by developing a few healthy habits, you’ll be able to ensure that your brain and body get the rest the deserve, so you are ready to have a productive next day. 

Why it Matters:

Practicing a relaxing nighttime ritual, such as powering down your electronics and reading a book, can help prepare your body for a good night’s sleep – and don’t forget the TV. While some people like to sleep with the television on, researchers have found that minimizing background noise can actually help your brain get more rest. In our own office, we’ve also heard from countless patients that they get a better night’s sleep after getting adjusted, which makes sense considering the numerous benefits of Chiropractic care.  

– Wind down for approximately 30 minutes before bed by turning off your electronics. 

– Minimize background noise to help your brain get much-deserved rest.

– Many patients report a more restful sleep after getting adjusted. 

Next Steps: 

Looking for more tips on how you can get a better night’s sleep? Come to our upcoming workshop where we’ll teach you about the best sleep position for your spine, how sleep helps your immune system stay strong, and how Chiropractic care can decrease the stress you hold in those muscles supporting your neck and shoulders. If you want to Sleep Better Tonight, then this workshop is for you! 

Science Source: 

Harvard Health Publishing. Harvard Medical School 2018

EOS Sleep Centers. Dr. David Volpi 

Shoulder Labrum Tear

Shoulder Labrum Tear

Shoulder labrum tear

A labral tear represents a tear of the labrum, which is a piece of fibrocartilage (rubbery soft tissue) attached to the rim of the shoulder socket that helps keep the ball of the joint in place.

The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the human body, but this great mobility comes at the expense of stability and increased injury risk.

A labral tear may occur slowly over time or suddenly as the result of accidents such as a motor vehicle accident, a fall on an outstretched arm or a shoulder dislocation. People who participate in repetitive overhead sports, such as throwing athletes, are more prone to suffer from a labral tear.

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Structures involved

The shoulder joint is comprised of three bones: the upper arm bone called the humerus, the shoulder blade and the collarbone. The link between the arm and the torso is done between the humerus and the shoulder blade. The humerus rests in a shallow socket on the side of the shoulder blade called the glenoid cavity and the labrum helps to add depth to this socket, making the joint more stable.

In the presence of a labral tear caused by repetitive movements, muscles of the rotator cuff, a group of muscles stabilizing the shoulder, are often also irritated.

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Signs & Symptoms that you may experience with Shoulder Labrum Tear

Everyone will react differently after an injury and recovery will depend on the severity of it. A tear of the labrum can cause but is not limited to, pain at the front of the shoulder, a feeling that your shoulder is coming out of its socket, weakness of the arm and limited range of motion. Pain is often felt when trying to lift the arm overhead. Clicking or cracking sounds can sometimes be heard when moving the arm, with a catching sensation in your shoulder.

It is also possible to feel pain during the night when sleeping on the affected shoulder.

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Recovery

Your rehabilitation plan, health, fitness & nutritional status will affect recovery speed. There are multiple types of labrum tears but the most common is called a superior labrum anterior and posterior tear (SLAP).

Most of the time, you can expect to recover functionally from a labrum tear. This means that even though the tear might still be there, you will be able to perform your activities of daily living without pain. It can take a few months to get back to your pre-tear functional level.

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▶ WHAT TO DO with Shoulder Labrum Tear

Early Stage

Relative rest is a good way to protect your shoulder and prevent further damage, but it’s important to avoid overprotecting your injury. A few days rest where you avoid pain-inducing movement and activities might be necessary. A quick but progressive return to your activities of daily living, light cardiovascular exercise and specific range of motion and strengthening exercises will allow better recovery.

Rehabilitation

Follow your practitioner’s advice. It will help you manage the different phases of the recovery process and will increase the likelihood of successful rehabilitation. Your practitioner will assist you during your rehabilitation program in order to regain your normal range of motion, strength and endurance, optimal motor control and functional status.

As per the principles of rehabilitation for a labrum tear, movement rehabilitation and relearning through therapeutic exercises is an important part of functional recovery. A progressive exercise program performed over a few weeks period is pretty standard.

▶ WHAT TO AVOID

Don’t rely on passive treatment only. Each phase of the rehabilitation process is important. Patients that are actively involved in their treatment plan tend to recover faster. Keep in mind that pain is not always a good indicator of tissue damage. As soon as you feel better and the pain is well managed in collaboration with your therapist, you should reintroduce light strengthening exercises as tolerated.

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Block out that noise 

The world’s noise gets very quiet when you’re in tune with yourself

Wise words indeed. When we are out of sorts with ourselves we get what professional athletes call “rabbit ears”. We hear everything going on around us and it distracts us from what we need to do. 
Get your body, your conscious mind and your subconscious mind all pulling in the same direction and those outside distractions become nothing more than white noise. 

Adjusting Your Sleep Schedule 

Bottom Line:

Neck and back pain are the most common reasons people experience sleep disturbances. Patients talk about sleeping on the floor, or sleeping in a lazy boy, or even sleeping bent over their bed attempting to get into a position that helps them get those few precious moments of rest and relief. Talk about a pain! All you want is the ability to get some rest, yet every position seems to make things feel worse. Well, don’t worry – you’re in the right place to get back on track!

Why it Matters:

Your body needs rest to heal.  If you are in pain, it can be challenging to find a comfortable position to rest. As Chiropractors, we understand this better than anyone. Chiropractic care has been shown to increase your spinal range of motion, decrease inflammation, and even reduce the pressure on the delicate nerves exiting your spinal column – all of which will make it much easier to find a comfortable sleep position. 

  • Finding a comfortable position to sleep when you’re in pain can be difficult.
  • Adjustments reduce the stress on your spine, helping you more easily find a comfortable position to sleep.
  • Sleep is essential to healing because your body is better able to accelerate the healing process when properly rested. 

Next Steps: 

If stress has kept you up at night, you’re not alone. However, you can rest easy knowing you’re in the right place! Chiropractic adjustments can help reduce the stress in the muscles supporting your head and neck, allowing you to experience a more comfortable – and more restful – night of sleep. 

Science Source: 

Neurophysiologic effects of spinal manipulation in patients with chronic low back pain. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders. 2011

Spondylolithesis

spondylolisthesis

Spondylolisthesis occurs when one vertebra slips out of place. This slight slippage can sometimes cause compression of the nerves and, in some cases, cause tingling, numbness, pain, and even weakness in the legs.

Spondylolisthesis can be the result of a trauma to the spine, a congenital defect or simply be a progression of osteoarthritis. Spondylolisthesis can occur, without apparent cause, as people age. In younger individuals, spondylolisthesis usually occurs as a result of trauma during sports such as gymnastics or football and can cause a fracture in the vertebra.

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Structures involved

Spondylolisthesis is found in the spine. The​ spine​ is made up of bones called ​vertebrae​ and between them are the ​intervertebral discs,​ which act as shock absorbers. Spondylolisthesis most often affects the lumbar region, particularly the L5 vertebra.

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Signs & Symptoms that you may experience with spondylolisthesis.

Each person will react differently to the presence of spondylolisthesis and symptoms can vary considerably. Initially, spondylolisthesis may be present without any noticeable symptoms.

When pain is present, it is often felt in the lower back or the buttocks. It can range from mild to severe and can affect daily activities such as walking. Burning and tingling sensations may be felt in the area of the buttocks and legs.

Sitting or leaning forward is often less painful than standing or walking because of the positioning of the spine.

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▶​ ​WHAT TO DO

Early Stage

Relative rest is a good way to protect your back and prevent your condition from getting worse, but it is important to avoid over-protecting it. A temporary reduction in activity may be necessary, but a quick return to your daily activities, light cardiovascular exercise and specific strengthening and mobility exercises will allow for better recovery.

Rehabilitation

Follow your therapist’s advice. This will help you manage your symptoms and increase the chances of successful rehabilitation. Your therapist will accompany you during your rehabilitation program to restore your mobility, muscle strength and endurance, flexibility and functional status.

According to the principles of spondylolisthesis rehabilitation, the reduction of joint and muscle stresses in the lumbopelvic-hip complex (back, pelvis, hip), the improvement of posture and thoracic mobility, muscular balance and weight control would be important elements for a functional recovery.

A progressive training program over a period of a few weeks including education on load-lifting techniques is quite common.

▶ ​WHAT TO AVOID

Do not rely solely on a passive treatment approach. Patients who actively participate in their treatment plan tend to better manage the symptoms caused by spondylolisthesis. Remember that pain is not always a good indicator of tissue damage. As soon as you feel better and the pain is well under control, introduce, in collaboration with your therapist, mild strengthening, mobility and cardiovascular exercises based on your tolerance.

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Shoulder Capsulitis

Shoulder Capsulitis

Shoulder capsulitis

Shoulder capsulitis happens when the strong connective tissue surrounding the shoulder becomes thick, stiff and inflamed, causing pain and loss of motion in the shoulder in all directions. It is sometimes called adhesive capsulitis or frozen shoulder.

The exact cause of this condition is unknown, but the risk of suffering from it increases following prolonged shoulder immobilization, a stroke or other shoulder conditions.

People over 40 are more prone to developing this condition and women are more commonly affected than men. Diseases such as diabetes, thyroid dysfunction and cardiovascular diseases can increase the risk of suffering from shoulder capsulitis.

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Structures involved

The glenohumeral joint capsule is involved in this condition. When it thickens, the capsule limits movements of the shoulder. The presence of a natural joint lubricant called synovial fluid also tends to diminish during a capsulitis.

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Signs & Symptoms that you may experience with Shoulder Capsulitis

Everyone will react differently in the event of capsulitis and recovery will depend on its intensity. Shoulder capsulitis generally causes pain and loss of range of motion in the shoulder. This condition typically develops slowly and can last from a few months to a few years. Symptoms of shoulder capsulitis can generally be categorized into three progressive stages.

In the first one, called the freezing stage, the shoulder becomes progressively stiffer and painful. Pain can be worse at night, especially if you sleep on your affected side.

In the second one, called the frozen stage, stiffness in the shoulder joint is important. Pain may begin to diminish during this stage but the range of motion in the shoulder is very limited and muscles start to lose their strength.

The last stage, called the thawing stage, is the beginning of recovery. There is a reduction in pain and a gradual increase in movement.

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Recovery

Prognosis is favorable for the majority of people affected but recovery can take a long time, ranging from one to two years. Your rehabilitation plan, health, fitness & nutritional status will affect recovery speed. Although you can expect to recover from this condition, some mobility restrictions may persist, particularly in regard to range of motion at the shoulder.

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▶ WHAT TO DO

Early Stage

Relative rest is a good way to protect your shoulder and prevent further damage during the first stage, but it’s important to avoid overprotecting your shoulder. It might be necessary to reduce pain-inducing movement and activities. Progressive return to your activities of daily living, range of motion exercises and light cardiovascular exercise will allow better recovery.

Rehabilitation for Shoulder Capsulitis

Follow your practitioner’s advice. It will help you manage the different stages of a capsulitis and will increase the likelihood of successful rehabilitation. Your practitioner will assist you during your rehabilitation program in order to regain your normal range of motion, strength and endurance and functional status.

As per the principles of rehabilitation for shoulder capsulitis, range of motion exercises are an important element of functional recovery. A progressive exercise program is pretty standard.

▶ WHAT TO AVOID

Don’t rely on passive treatment only. Each phase of the rehabilitation process is important. Patients that are actively involved in their treatment plan tend to recover faster. Keep in mind that pain is not always a good indicator of tissue damage. As soon as you feel better and the pain is well managed in collaboration with your therapist, you should reintroduce light range of motion and strengthening exercises as tolerated.

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Chiropractic: Obesity, Smoking, & Drinking Associated with Low Back Pain.

SMoking and back pain
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Chiropractic: Obesity, Smoking, & Drinking Associated with Low Back Pain.

New research presented at the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons annual meeting suggests that low back pain sufferers who smoke, drink, and/or are obese may possibly ease their agony by making healthier lifestyle choices. A review of data from 26 million men and women found that people who are smokers, are alcohol-dependent drinkers, and/or are categorized as obese are between four and five times more likely to currently experience back pain than individuals who don’t smoke or drink, and maintain a healthy weight. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, March 2015

Sugar: The Beach Body Killer 

Bottom Line:

If you have a sweet tooth, you know it can be difficult to avoid sugary foods like pastries, candy, or even soda. Which sugary food is your weakness? 

Researchers have proven that sugar is a key contributor to weight gain. But how? 

Well, sugar is made up of two molecules: glucose and fructose. Glucose is what your body uses for energy. Fructose, on the other hand, is a molecule that your liver turns to fat and is a key contributor to weight gain and disease. 

Why it Matters:

When you eat a lot of sugar, it causes your blood glucose to rise, which can be toxic. So your body produces insulin to get the glucose out of your blood and into the cells to be used for energy. Over time, your body can actually build a resistance to insulin which means that your pancreas works harder to create the same balance. When the resistance to insulin reaches a critical point, it can result in type II diabetes. But first, your body begins storing an overabundance of fat in your fat cells. The worst part? Not only do you start “gaining weight” but your body has a tough time getting the energy out of the fat cells, which means your brain thinks you are hungry, and you eat even more. What a vicious cycle! 

– Excess sugar can lead to cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and weight gain.

– Eating sugary foods can result in your body storing away more fat.

– Sugar can trick your brain into thinking it’s still hungry (even after you’ve eaten a full meal).

Next Steps: 

Staying fit and healthy can be challenging, but we’re here for you. How you choose to eat is one of the most important aspects of living a healthy life. When you make good choices about how you eat, how you move, and how you think – you are set up for a healthy life. 

Science Source(s): 

Sugar Consumption, Metabolic Disease and Obesity: The State of the Controversy. Crit Rev Clin Lab Sci. 2016

Sleeping Well Can Keep You Healthy 

Bottom Line:

New research has shown that not only can a good night’s sleep keep you mentally sharp, but it can also help you stay healthy by strengthening your immune system. For years physicians have believed that sleep supports the healing process, and now new evidence has been discovered that indicates sleep also plays a role in regulating your immune function. Your immune system is the complex network of cells, tissues, and organs that protect your body from disease, so keeping that system functioning at its highest level is very important to your overall health and wellness. 

Why it Matters:

While you’re asleep, your central nervous system is in constant communication with your immune system. Many immune system functions operate on a 24 hour cycle, just like your sleep schedule. In fact, your T-cells, which are some of the most important immune cells, are very, very active while you’re asleep. Everyone may not require the same amount of sleep, but the research is clear: getting a good night’s sleep will help bolster your immune system. 

  • Your body uses sleep as its time to rest and recover.
  • Sleep patterns are tightly linked to your immune function.
  • Chronic sleep issues promote inflammation and pain. 

Next Steps: 

Sleeping well has been proven to be an essential part of staying healthy. Sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, can make it extremely difficult to get a good night’s sleep and leave you feeling tired and sleepy all day. If you have experienced difficulty sleeping, let us know. We have an upcoming workshop where we’ll be discussing not only the causes of many of these issues, but also the action steps you can take to FINALLY get a great night of sleep! 

Science Source: 

Sleep and immune function. European Journal of Physiology. 2012 

Chiropractic: Abnormal Neck Posture Associated with Headache Risk.

Chiropractic: Abnormal Neck Posture Associated with Headache Risk.

After comparing neck x-rays of patients with cervicogenic headaches (or headaches originating from dysfunction in the neck) to neck x-rays of healthy controls, researchers found that just a 3-4° difference in cervical lordosis (curve) is associated with an 8% increased risk for developing this type of headache.

 

Physical Therapy, February 2015

For more health and wellness tips and information follow us or check out our blog at http://www.aberdeenchiropracticblog.com 

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