Why Does My Pain Feel Better In The Warm Weather?

Why Does My Pain Feel Better In The Warm Weather?

The prolonged spell of warm weather in Bristol appears to not only have lifted spirits and the sale of San Miguel; patients have been reporting in their droves that their pain has been more bearable in the heat. Is this possible? Can the temperature and climate affect aches and pains? It’s almost understandable when a patient goes abroad on holiday; they are away from their daily routine, relaxing, swimming and generally having a great time. But is there more to it than simply time out? Symptoms tend to worsen again after three days back doing the school run and days in the office, so it suggests not. So… has this prolonged period of good weather been responsible for peoples pain easing, whilst still doing the daily grind, or are we just lifting our moods by enjoying the summer we’ve craved for years? Expert opinion is divided, but one consistency found in both theory and research is the role of barometric pressure. One of the better known theories is that the increased pressure in warmer times, prevents the joints swelling and thus causing pain. Although this makes sense, it is unfortunately unproven by research. Another theory discusses the role pressure change has on the synovial fluid in the joints, but again this is unproven. Research in Australia and USA has found no correlation between temperature and level of pain in arthritic joints i.e. you were just as likely to experience pain whether you were in a warm or cold climate. BOO I say! So the truth appears to lie somewhere in the middle. Pressure changes may influence pain, also I...
I click my own neck, what more can a Chiropractor do? – Self manipulating spine

I click my own neck, what more can a Chiropractor do? – Self manipulating spine

Lots of people click their own necks; sometimes for relief, sometimes for dramatic effect, sometime just because they can, often without trying to.  But what is the difference between clicking it yourself and a Chiropractor doing it? The need to click one’s own neck is potentially a sign of an underlying problem.  Often the need to do it is down to poor posture putting excess stress on the joints in the cervical (neck) spine.  Due to the stresses on the spine, the joints become restricted and uncomfortable.  If an on-going problem, it may get to the stage of a trapped nerve!  When you click your own neck (self manipulating) you are mostly ‘clicking’ either the joint above or below the restricted one that needs to move properly.  Chiropractors train over 4-5 years to adjust the right joint in the right way (see picture below).  This relieves the restricted joint and frees up any trapped nerves. Is there anything wrong with clicking my own neck? The danger of doing it yourself is you’re clicking the wrong joints.  When you self manipulate it may make the same ‘popping’ noise (air being released from the joint) as a Chiropractic adjustment; it might provide some relief, due to the natural release of a pain-relieving chemical called endorphins.  But it can cause damage. When a joint is restricted, the joints above and below work harder to compensate for the lack of movement in the stiff joint.  So these joints are moving too much already and when you self adjust you are forcing them to move even further (see picture).  This can, over time, cause stretching of the...
How to Activate your Core Muscles before you lift

How to Activate your Core Muscles before you lift

How to activate your core muscles – you’ve gotta ‘Tuck it!’ Before you do anything you need to ‘Tuck it!’.  When I say ‘Tuck it!’ I mean engage your core muscles.  Your core muscles are like a corset around your low back that support your spine.  If you don’t use them properly then your spine takes more load than necessary and you’re exposing yourself to potential back problems.  So when you lift a child, get out of a chair, go for a run or even stand still you need to ‘Tuck it!’. So how do I ‘Tuck it!’? So, firstly we need to get your back in the right position.  In a standing position put your hands on the top of your pelvis (the bony bit in your waist) and rock your pelvis back and forth.  By this I mean, stick your bum out as far as you can and then tuck it in as much as you can without moving your hands back and forth.  When you can do this, find the mid point between fully back and forward.  This is your neutral pelvic point. In this position, imagine a piece of string attached to the top of your head pulling you up.  As you lift up, you should feel the muscles at the front between your pelvic bones tighten slightly.  These are called the transverse abdominis, one of the main core muscles for your low back.  Now take a deep breath in.  As you exhale, draw your belly button back towards your spine.  Practice this a few times and you should really feel the muscles in your...
Start something that matters | Cherish Uganda

Start something that matters | Cherish Uganda

Start something that matters with Cherish Uganda When Charlie and I first dreamed of owning our own chiropractic clinic, we were still working in Essex. Life was great, we had busy successful lists, but the time had come to do our own thing. Having worked for other people, we learnt how they did it, but it was important to spend time thinking about how we wanted to do things. Whilst on holiday, I read a book recording the success of a company called Toms Shoes. This company had the idea of tithing at its core. Whilst travelling in South America, Blake Mycoskie, the young entrepreneur who went on to create Toms Shoes, noticed how many children were barefooted. He wanted to create a sustainable way to help resolve this situation, so set up his company with the concept of ‘One for One’. For every pair of stylish espadrilles they sold, they gave away a free pair of shoes to people in South America. Not only is Toms Shoes now a multimillion pound international business, it has also helped tens of millions of people at the same time. This concept enthralled me but the big question was how do you apply it to a Chiropractic clinic? I came back from holiday bursting with ideas. I shared them with Charlie over several glasses of wine and through the Sauvignon Blanc haze we created the core belief that our clinic is now built on. The idea was simple: our patients will gain health and at the same time give health to others. So for every treatment someone pays for, £1 will go to charity. The charity would be based in an environment where £1 can achieve far more than it would here in the UK....
Do you have the weight of the world on your shoulders?

Do you have the weight of the world on your shoulders?

Do you have the weight of the world on your shoulders? Well, you do have a heavy weight on your shoulders.  Your head!  The average human head weighs 8-12lbs (4-5kg), that’s about the same weight as a bowling ball! The thing that stops you noticing the weight of your head is the suspension in your neck. What I mean by this is the curve in your cervical (neck) spine has a natural 43 degree arc, like a banana, that acts like suspension for your head.  As you move around, whether walking or sitting down, the curve in your neck compresses like a spring to take the pressure of your head off your body. Sometimes, due to bad posture whilst reading or working at a computer (or texting!!), you can move your head forward of your shoulders.  This common posture is called forward head carriage (FHC).  FHC has 2 main effects: it reduced your 43 degree (suspension) arc in your neck, and it moves the weight of the head forward from your centre of gravity. Loosing your internal banana As you move your head forward it places increased stress on your neck and shoulders.  For every inch you move your head forward you head effectively weights 10llbs more!  You can feel the effect of that when you next pick up a bowling ball (we have one in our centre in Bristol so please ask us).  Hold the ball close to your chest and feel the weight of the ball, then move it away from your body and feel how much harder it is to hold.  That is exactly what the...