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What is the best posture for your spine?

What is the best posture for your spine?

“How should I set up my desk?” “Is lying on my back the best position?” “What type of mattress should I get if sleeping with a bad back?”   We get asked a lot about the best postures to look after your spine, and today I’m going to answer them for you. There’s one posture that is definitely the worst for your spine and body. It’s… the one you spend the most time in!   Essentially as humans we are designed to move. Sitting in the car to work, then 8 hours at a desk etc is not great. No wonder sitting has been described as the new smoking.   The key to a healthy spine is movement. Although there are better postures than others, we are not designed to sit or stand in the perfect position and not move – variety is key. And that’s why standing desks are becoming so popular. It’s not because you’re standing, it’s because you can alternate between sitting and standing, changing your posture regularly.   So yes, that means there’s nothing wrong with slouching. The problem with slouching is if you do it all the time and stay in that posture for a long period. It’s the accumulative effect that’s bad.   Having said all the above, I do have some handy tips for you:   When sitting, try not to cross your legs and keep both your feet on the ground with your hips slightly higher than your knees. Have what you’re doing at eye level, or as high as possible to avoid slumping forward. Most importantly take regular breaks.  ...
What can cause back pain?

What can cause back pain?

This Back Awareness Month we are looking at what causes back pain? The answer is simple. Stress! Certain things might jump to your mind when you think of stress, however there are many different types of stress. Let’s break them down into the 3 main types. Physical Stress This is all about how you look after your body physically. Poor posture and bad lifting techniques are obvious culprits. Lack of exercise and stretching, repetitive movements, accidents and falls, carrying your kids – the list goes on. The biggest piece of advice I have for this type of stress is, keep movement varied and frequent. There are ideal postures we should adopt, however the worst position is the one you spent most of your time in. If you’ve been working from home during the pandemic then the amount you need to move, compared to commuting and walking around an office, is dramatically reduced. Try and move each joint in your body through its full range of movement at least twice per day. Emotional Stress We are all affected by this one but rarely do people link it to back pain. The truth is, worrying about a deadline, running around after your kids, making ends meet, having a never ending to do list all affect you physically and cause pain. A classic example, how many times have you heard someone say they’ve had a stressful day at work and now they have a headache? Although not an obvious cause, emotional stress probably causes or is involved in 80-90% of the patients we see! What can you do? There’s a huge amount...
What Should I Wear to a Chiropractic Appointment?

What Should I Wear to a Chiropractic Appointment?

The second most common question we get asked when booking an initial consultation is: ‘what should I wear?’ The most common one is about parking. No matter what you’re visiting the chiropractor about, whether it’s low back pain, sciatica or a sports injury, the answer is the same: come as you are. At your initial appointment we will go through a detailed case history of what’s going on, a complete examination, covering all your nerves, muscles and joints, and, if necessary, take an x-ray. For the examination and x-rays, we provide you with a gown to get changed into so we can assess you properly. So the only thing we ask is that you wear underwear the day of your initial appointment. You only need to wear a gown on your very first visit. We’ve also written about what to expect from your first chiropractic appointment. What do I need to wear to follow-up Chiropractic appointments? For all appointments after that just wear your normal day-to-day clothes. We are good at working through all items of clothing, even thick jumpers in the winter. So please wear whatever you feel comfortable in. Whether that’s your suit ready for a day in the office, your work kit at the end of the day, or something fancy on your way to a boozy lunch. If you have any more questions then please contact the team. If you’re interested in chiropractic treatment and how it could help you, why not book an appointment with us at the Chiropractic Centre in Bristol? You can give us a call on 01179741501 or click here to book...
Is It Bad to Crack Your Neck?

Is It Bad to Crack Your Neck?

Is It Bad to Click Your Neck? We get asked this question in our centres a lot. Often just after someone cracks their neck in front of us during their initial appointment. So, is it bad? Yes and no. It all depends on if you’re doing it intentionally or not and how often. Some people are naturally more clicky than others. Sometimes just turning their head causes a popping sound. This isn’t going to cause any harm. Strengthening up the neck muscles around the neck and upper back can help stabilise the joints so they don’t’ click as often. “Feeling the need to click your own neck on a regular basis can signify an underlying imbalance in your spine.” If you are trying to click your own neck then this can be a problem. Feeling the need to click your own neck on a regular basis can signify an underlying imbalance in your spine. Although cracking your neck can provide relief, it rarely addresses the underlying issue. Over time people often find themselves cracking their necks more and more frequently; often we meet people who do it multiple times per day! And that’s not great. Why do I feel the need to click my neck all the time? The reason you feel the need to click your neck is a build-up of tension in the neck and shoulders. This is most often related to sitting in front of a computer or phone too much or stress. The muscles tighten up around your neck and shoulders and over time the joints in your spine start to lock up. It’s this...
What Causes Aches and Pains in Old Age?

What Causes Aches and Pains in Old Age?

Aches and Pains in Old Age When it comes to ageing, most of us just seem to assume that aches and pains are part of the package. However, this is only true to a certain extent. While there are some normal aches and pains to ageing, these can be mitigated to a certain extent by taking the right precautions. Pain is usually your body’s way of signalling that something’s wrong and so if you’re experiencing notable amounts of pain as you grow older, it isn’t something you should ignore or simply put up with. It’s important to take the right steps to address aches and pains, no matter how old you are. And the sooner you address them, the better. The Normal Aches and Pains of Ageing Our bodies undergo a significant amount of stress over the course of our lives, and so it makes sense that we experience things differently as we grow older. There may be certain activities that you could with ease when you were younger, whether it’s something as simple as kicking a football around a park with some friends. But whereas simple activities or sports had no effect on you in the past, now they may leave your joints feeling stiffer than usual the next day. This can cause you to feel less mobile and free than before. As we age, our bodies become more prone to damage, which means we need to take additional steps to take care of them. It’s important to remember that your body is carrying all those years of sports and physical activities that you have behind you. But...
What is Recommended for Relief of Lower Back Pain

What is Recommended for Relief of Lower Back Pain

What is Recommended for Relief of Lower Back Pain Lower back pain is something everyone gets at some point to varying degrees. Some people will have a fall or some sort of trauma however lots, if not most people, will just slowly start to get a nagging ache in their lower back that grows over time with no obvious cause for it. If you are any of these then this is a guide on how Chiropractic care can help you. I will try to keep this short and sweet but as you probably can imagine there are lots of elements to lower back pain, especially the not so obvious type. So to start off we should discuss the guidelines set out by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, or known as the NICE Guidelines, as this is what all medical and therapeutic services in the UK should abide to that includes the NHS and private services (NICE Guidelines Pathway Updated March 2021). What the NICE Guidelines recommend for Lower Back Pain The first step is to get the correct information on your lower back pain as well as information on how to manage it yourself. Chiropractic is in a very strong position to help you with this as we specialise in back and spine problems, yes we can help with other body parts and problems however back pain is our bread and butter. The second step has many options and which one you take depends on how you would like to manage your problem. The different options are Exercise, Manual Therapy, Psychological Therapy, Pharmacological treatments or Specific...

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