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Posts Tagged ‘Posture’

Is there anything I can do for middle-back pain during pregnancy?

April 10th, 2009 1 comment
julesl68 asked:

The muscles the lower-middle back ache when I’m sitting at my desk. They feel like they are being pulled. I try to adjust my posture, my chair, etc., and nothing is working. Is there anything I can do to get some relief during the day when I HAVE to sit at my desk and work?

Thomasena

I have a lower-back pain with trouble keeping a straight posture while standing. Help?

April 6th, 2009 3 comments
Powderpuff asked:

I’ve gone to the chiropractor a few months ago for a similar problem. He did a series of adjustments along with me doing stretches and exercises. I was only running at this time.

I now incorporated lots of strength straining with free-weights and lots of ab exercises so that this problem would not occur.

In my ballet class I had some soreness in my hips and thighs and took a pilates class the next day (along with running). I then had a tennis lesson the next day and by Saturday (today) my lower back is killing me as much as it did a few months ago. I don’t understand what’s wrong since i’ve been doing all the exercises with building up the muscles (3 times a week plus ballet makes us do abs before class). I am also having some numbness in both legs.

I am using Tiger balm patches now. What can I do until I can see the chiropractor? I am doing some stretches but is there better positions to rest in which will allow my back to relax and heal?

Maritza

February 21st, 2009 No comments
Lesley Lyon asked:

One of the very common medical problems is low back pain. Lower back pain is pain felt and travels in the ribs particularly in the back or in the upper part of legs. This pain starts suddenly and could be the follow up of strain or an injury. Sometimes the pain may not have anatomical cause. Sit up or turn over posture may be difficult and the worse could be bending or sitting. Even a sneeze or a cough can be painful.

Back pain normally gets resolved within weeks but the pain undergone by the patients is unbearable. Conservational treatments are normally taken for lower back pain since it is temporary and slowly resolve with time.

For a speedy recovery, proper treatment has to be started only after knowing the exact cause for its occurrence. The main reason for lower back pain can be Lumbar muscle strain and ruptured disc or herniated disc. Disc damage in the inter vertebral column leads to Discogenic lower back pain and this could be diagnosed using discogram. But this in no way relates to herniated disc where the back gets pressed to the nerve. Aging population come across Spinal stenosis as the spinal canal is thinned. This may happen due to arthritis or any other specific conditions. Any joint ache is termed arthritis and particularly on the spine creates lower back pain.

Spinal stenosis causes back pain in the aging population. As we age, the spinal canal can become constricted, due in part to arthritis and other conditions. If the spinal canal becomes too tight, back pain can be the result. Spondylolisthesis occurs due to the instability of adjacent vertebras which start to slip. This results in unstable spine and ends in lower back pain. Osteoporosis Leads to many orthopedic complications and is mostly referred as the compression fractures of vertebral column. This weakens the bones and hence the possibilities of getting fractures are more .If back pain continues for 6 weeks or less it’s referred as acute. If this continues for less than 12 weeks it is described as sub-acute. It’s termed as chronic if it persists for more than 3 months.

Diagnosis is helped by blood tests and scan but not to a greater extent and X rays are not advised due to high radiation. Muscle strain heals quickly as the blood supply is good and carries the needed nutrients with proteins for healing. Bed rest is advised for severe pain but not for two days or more. Hot or cold application eases the pain to a certain extent. People who are active with good physique can avoid low backache, as there will be regular stretch of muscles. The supporting muscles of the spine are extensors, which include back and gluteal muscles, Flexors, which comprise abdominal and iliopsoas muscles and the last one is the side muscles also called as rotators. It’s also referred as Obliques .Not all these muscles are used in day-to-day life and they get weakened with age.

Lower backache exercise program should combine stretching and strengthening exercises with aerobics. Common symptoms of lower back pain for people less than 60 year old will be pain in legs or numbness and pain during movement and sitting. Older people will have symptoms like increase of back pain during the morning g and evening periods with stiffness in the back and. pain is also felt downwards in the legs. Psychological reasons play main role on pain levels and so person’s attitude and situation plays an active role.

Neurological symptoms like weakening, feeling of numbness or tingling sometimes accompany pain. Immediate attention is needed if there is a dysfunction in bladder or in the bowel and weakness or numbness in the groin.

Precautions like avoidance of stress and maintaining proper weight with regular exercise help in eliminating the problems of lower back pain.

ANTHONY

February 19th, 2009 No comments
Nishanth Reddy asked:

Lower back pain is one of the most common causes of job-related disability and why some people miss work. It is also the second most common neurological ailment in the United States, second only to headache. In fact, approximately 80% of adults in Western countries have, at some point, experienced lower back pain.

For some fortunate people, pain in the lower back may be resolved by itself or with the aid of medication within two to four weeks. However, there are some cases of lower back pain that may last for more than a few weeks, during which case the condition is termed as “chronic” and “progressive,” meaning it can only grow worse over time.

Moreover, 60-80% of those patients who suffer their first episode of lower back pain may experience recurring pain within one year.

According to current research, there are certain muscles in the back that work to stabilize the spine. When the spine or the back suffers an injury, these muscles are reflexively inhibited or shutdown. Worse still, these muscles do not spontaneously recover, and this is true even if patients do not feel pain and are able to return to normal activity levels.

As a result of the inhibition of these muscles, called lumbar multifidi and the transversus abdominus, lower back pain occurs. However, there are steps you can take to prevent the same thing from happening to you.

Lower Back Pain and Physical Therapy

One way to prevent the inhibition of the lumbar multifidi and transversus abdominus is through a series of physical therapy exercises.

Designed to strengthen the muscles of the lower back and keep the spine healthy, these physical therapy exercises may range from back stabilization exercises to muscle strength development and several wide variety of techniques.

In addition, a physical therapist may also recommend such methods as heat therapy, ultrasound, massage, mobilization, and education about posture and body mechanics in order to prevent lower back pain from recurring.

Some of these methods will be discussed later on. You will also find some practical self-help tips provided by experts to help you avoid lower back pain or prevent the condition from worsening.

However, before we head on to learning how lower back pain is treated through physical therapy, it is important that we first understand what causes lower back pain.

Lower Back Pain: CAUSES

There are actually many types of back pain, but the most common is pain in the lower back. Why? You might ask. The reason is simple: you carry most of your weight in the lower back. Thus, it is highly likely that a person would suffer pain in that area.

There is no definitive cause of lower back pain. Sometimes, the causes of the condition are so complex that it is difficult to pinpoint just a single one.

However, physical therapists and other healthcare professionals have observed that lower back pain is often a result of strained back muscles and ligaments due to any of the following activities:

Improper posture

Heavy lifting

Sudden awkward movement

Muscle spasm

Stress

We could all be guilty of the above activities. We may not suffer any back pains now, but it is likely that as we get older and the degree of inhibition of the back muscles as a result of these activities increases, back pain becomes a very distinct possibility.

In addition to these common activities, lower back pain may also result from specific conditions, such as:

Herniated disk (when the disk material presses on a nerve)

Sciatica (when a herniated disk presses on the sciatic nerve. The condition causes sharp, shooting pain through the buttocks and the back of the leg.)

Spinal stenosis (when the space around the spinal cord and nerve roots becomes narrow. This is caused by arthritis and bone overgrowth, the pain resulting from when a nerve gets pinched in the narrow space.)

Spondylosis (a type of arthritis affecting the spine due to degenerative changes brought on by aging)

Spondylolisthesis (when one vertebra in the spinal column slips forward over another)

Lower Back Pain: TREATMENT

The treatment of lower back pain depends on several factors, including the specific type of lower back pain (whether it is chronic or acute) and the purported cause.

For instance, acute lower back pain is commonly treated with pain relieving drugs, such as analgesics, or some forms of exercises that can help relax the muscles.

On the other hand, chronic back pain or one that lasts for more than two weeks and is progressive may be caused by some underlying condition, during which case the treatment plan may consist of resolving the underlying condition to treat the back pain.

Lower Back Pain and Physical Therapy Exercise

Physical therapy exercise is one of the most common methods of treating lower back pain. In fact, many home remedies for lower back pain consist of exercise, because the general theory is that if you remain active, you remain healthy. This is true in most cases.

However, for purposes of this article, the exercises featured here will be those that are practiced by physical therapists to treat patients with lower back pain.

Generally, in physical therapy exercises, the exercise program for back pain should encompass a set of stretching exercises, strengthening exercises, and low impact aerobics. Read below for more on these exercises:

-Stretching

The back of a person is composed of the spinal column and contiguous muscles, ligaments and tendons. All these are designed to move in consonance with each other so that any limitation in the range of motion in any of these components of the back result in back pain.

Stretching for lower back pain specifically targets soft tissues, such as muscles, ligaments and tendons, found in the back and around the spine. By stretching, the spine and soft tissues are mobilized, increasing motion and thus, relieving pain.

There are many kinds of stretching exercises employed by physical therapists. One is the Hamstring Stretching Exercise which works to relax tight hamstrings, a common symptom of lower back pain. This exercise is said to help decrease the intensity of lower back pain among sufferers.

-Strengthening

Physical therapists generally use two forms of strengthening and back pain relief exercises, usually depending on the specific condition of the patient. These are the McKenzie exercises and dynamic lumbar stabilization exercises. However, the two forms of strengthening exercises may also be combined should the therapist find it appropriate to do so.

-McKenzie Exercises

Named after a physical therapist in New Zealand, McKenzie exercises are primarily extension exercises that could help reduce pain generated from the disc space and also may help reduce the symptoms of herniated disc by reducing pressure on a nerve root.

For acute pain, the McKenzie exercises should be done frequently, at least once every two hours. In addition, patients are advised to avoid flexing their spine when exercising.

-Dynamic Lumbar Stabilization Exercises

Using this back exercise technique, the first thing that a physical therapist does is to look for the patient’s “neutral” spine. This refers to the position that allows the patient to feel the most comfortable.

Afterwards, when the patient is in that position, the back muscles are then exercised in order to “teach” the spine how to stay in this position.

Performing these exercises on a regular basis can help strengthen the back muscles and keep the spine well-positioned.

Low Impact Aerobic Exercises

The purpose of low impact aerobic exercise is to recondition the back. Patients who undergo reconditioning of the back thro
ugh low impact aerobic exercise will have fewer episodes of lower back pain.

In addition, whenever an episode of lower back pain does occur, the pain is less intense and lasts only for a short period.

Another benefit of low impact aerobic exercise is that patients tend to stay functional that is, they can continue with their regular work and carry on with recreational activities. In contrast, patients who do not undergo low impact aerobic exercises typically experience the gradual loss of their functional abilities.

For low impact aerobic exercises to achieve their desired results, they should be continuous. This will increase the heart rate and keep it elevated as well as increase the production of endorphins, which are pain fighting hormones released by the body.

Here are some examples of low impact aerobic exercises that you may want to try in order to lessen or reduce lower back pain:

-Walking

One of the simplest forms of aerobic exercises, walking is generally considered as very gentle on the back. To get the maximum benefit from walking as a form of low impact aerobic exercise, walk two to three miles three times per week.

-Stationary Bicycling

This form of aerobic exercise is less painful on the back since there is lower impact produced. This is beneficial for patients with lower back pain who may find walking too painful.

-Water Therapy

Sometimes referred to as aquatherapy, water therapy is simply doing exercise in the water. The buoyancy works to provide effective conditioning at the same time stress on the back is reduced.

VANNESA

January 22nd, 2009 No comments
Mark Smith asked:

The health of your back depends to a great extent on your posture and body movements, your ability to cope with stress, and your exercise regime.

Many types of back pain can be blamed on weak abdominal and back muscles. That’s why most doctors oppose prolonged bed rest for back pain and instead recommend light physical activity along with pain relief medication and other proactive treatments.

Physical activity may not only provide pain relief, but it can also prevent future back pain. Along with pain relief medication, many doctors and physio-therapists tailor individualized exercise routines to treat patients who suffer from various types of back pain.

A typical exercise program for back pain may involve stretching and strengthening exercises, flexing, and endurance training. A variety of exercises and techniques are available for back pain relief; your doctor can help you choose an appropriate routine, taking into account the cause and severity of your back pain.

Advantages of Exercise for Back Pain Patients

Along with a healthy diet, doctors recommend exercise as an important component of a healthy lifestyle for most people, not only those who suffer from back pain.

The potential benefits of an exercise program for back pain may include: * Immediate, short-term pain relief * Stretching of tight, contracted muscles * Strengthening of weak muscles, which can contribute to back pain * Reducing mechanical stress on the back * Stabilizing the back * Increasing the ease and efficiency of body movements * Improving posture, which can guard against future back pain * Minimizing the frequency and magnitude of chronic back pain * Increasing the likelihood of quicker recovery from back pain in the future * Improving fitness to prevent future injuries

A Basic Exercise Program for Back Pain Relief

A basic exercise program for dealing with back pain involves strengthening the back and supporting muscles. If you have injured your back or have other health problems such as osteoporosis, start the exercises only after consulting with a doctor.

You can start on a gentle stretching and strengthening routine if you have no serious spinal problems.

Exercise #1 For Back Pain Relief:

Abdominal contractions gently stretch the back muscles: 1. Lie on your back. Bend your knees and place your hands below the ribs. 2. Tighten your stomach muscles to squeeze the ribs toward the back. Do not hold your breath. 3. Keep your muscles contracted for five seconds and then release. 4. Repeat ten times.

Exercise #2 To Prevent Back Pain:

Even when you no longer have back pain, doctors often recommend that you continue exercising to strengthen the back. Choose exercises that help align your body correctly and improve your posture to prevent back pain from recurring. For example, curling against the wall can help improve your standing posture. 1. Stand with your back against the wall, with your feet approximately six inches away from the wall. 2. Bend your knees and drop your head and shoulders. 3. Pull your stomach in and slowly roll up one vertebra at a time against the wall.

Exercise #3 To Prevent Back Pain

Strong abdominal muscles prevent many types of back pain so exercises that involve those muscles are often part of physical therapy programs designed to avoid back pain. For example, diagonal crunches not only strengthen the stomach muscles, but also keep the tummy from sagging. 1. Lie on your back. Place your hands behind your head. Bring your knees to your chest at right angles to the waist and cross your feet at the ankles. 2. Exhale slowly while raising your trunk, and move your right elbow as much as you can to the left knee. Slowly lower your trunk. 3. Repeat with the left elbow and the right knee. 4. Repeat ten times.

To improve fitness, you may wish to include stamina-building exercises such as aerobics. As these exercises are more rigorous, start them slowly and only after checking with your physician.

Always warm up before the physical activity and cool down afterward. Walking or light jogging, bicycling, and swimming are some exercises that can provide excellent aerobic conditioning.

Alternative Exercise Therapy Options for Back Pain Relief and Recovery A variety of alternative exercise therapies and programs are available to help alleviate, cure and prevent future back pain. Some of the more popular programs are:

* Tai Chi Chuan: This gentle martial art form provides exercise for the body, while helping the mind to concentrate. The movements relax the muscles, free the joints, and ease tension. Some people suffering from back pain use this technique along with pain relief medication.

* Yoga: This ancient Indian tradition involves a wide range of mind-body exercises including postural and breathing exercises, deep relaxation, and meditation. Many yoga postures focus on increasing spinal strength and flexibility, which can provide back pain relief. According to researchers, regular yoga practice may also prevent some types of chronic back pain.

* Chi Kung: Also known as Qigong, this ancient Chinese system of exercise focuses on breathing and posture while teaching the mind to concentrate. Chi Kung therapists claim that this system may be used effectively for back pain relief.

* Feldenkrais Method: This exercise technique aims to increase the ease and efficiency of body movements. Therapists try to increase your awareness of body movements, while teaching you to recognize and correct muscle tension.

* Buteyko Breathing Technique: This Russian therapy involves exercises in slow breathing and holding the breath. Therapists claim that this technique reduces muscle tension and can provide back pain relief.

Note: When you perform any type of exercise, it is imperative to distinguish between pain and the feeling of exertion. Pain is a signal from the nerves that a certain activity is wrong for you. If you experience pain while exercising, including back pain, you should instead start with mild exercises that feel comfortable.

Treating AND Preventing Your Back Pain

Exercise can be an important part of an effective treatment program for back pain. Customizing an exercise program that’s suitable for you can help you safely strengthen your back, improve your stamina and fitness, and prevent future back pain.

For more information on back pain and effective pain relief options, consult the online knowledge base at eDrugstore.md. To order prescription pain relief medications at discount prices, visit eDrugstore.md home page and look for the pain relief section.

KRISTA

January 12th, 2009 No comments
P.Bhargav Kashyap asked:

Oh! Pain in the Neck?!

Neck pain, at times, can become pain in the neck’ quite literally. People who have experienced neck pain alone know how painful the neck pain can turnout to be.

Neck is one of the most flexible regions of the spine, which consists of vertebrae, seven shock absorbing discs, muscles, and vertebral ligaments to hold them in place. The uppermost cervical disc connects the top of the spinal column to the base of the skull. The spinal cord, which sends nerve impulses to every part of the body, runs through a canal in the cervical vertebrae and continues all the way down the spine.

What Causes neck pain?

Most people experience neck pain at some point in their lives. Neck pain can be acute, lasting for few hours or a few weeks, or it can be chronic. Neck pain that lasts several weeks or longer is considered chronic neck pain.

Neck pain can be caused by an activity or injury or by a medical condition. Your head and neck region is vulnerable to many different stresses. Bad posture can cause misalignment of your neck, head, and spine. Car accidents can cause whiplash. Age and wear and tear can cause arthritis. Even activities such as chewing gum and reading in bed and cause pain. How do we avoid these potential problems? And if we can’t avoid them, how can we recover as quickly as possible.

Non-specific neck pain

Many people develop a stiff and painful neck for no obvious reason. It may happen after a minor twisting injury, for example while gardening. Since the underlying cause for this type of neck pain is not fully understood hence it is called ‘non-specific neck pain’ Having non-specific neck pain does not mean that your neck is damaged. Often it happens in people whose necks would appear completely normal under an x-ray. It is the most common type of neck pain and disappears after a few days.

Activities that cause neck pain

Neck pain mostly is caused by activities that result in repeated or prolonged movements of the neck’s muscles, ligaments, tendons, bones, or joints. This can result in a strain(an overstretched or overused muscle), a sprain (injury to a ligament), a spasm of the neck muscles, or inflammation of the neck joints.

           1. Holding your head in a forward or odd position for long periods of time

               while working, reading, watching TV, or talking on the telephone.

           2. Sleeping on a pillow that is too high or too flat or doesn’t adequately 

               support your head, or sleeping on your stomach with your neck twisted

               or bent.

           3. Spending long periods of time resting your forehead on your upright fist

               or arm.

           4. Work that uses the upper body and arms, such as painting a ceiling or 

               other overhead work.

Injuries that cause neck pain

The Spine consists of interlocking bones(vertebrae) and discs that separate the vertebrae. The portion of the spine that runs through the neck is known as the cervical spine. Muscles and ligaments in the neck hold the cervical spine together. Injury to any of these structures may result in neck pain.

Minor injuries may occur from tripping or from excessive motion of the cervical spine. Severe neck injuries may occur from whiplash in an accident, falls from significant heights, direct blows to the face or the back or top of the head, sports-related injuries , a penetrating injury such as a stab wound, or pressure applied to the outside of the neck, such as strangulation.

Pain from an injury may be sudden and severe. Bruising and swelling may develop soon after the injury. Sudden (acute) injuries can result in strain and pain in the neck, dislocation of the spin, or a ruptured disc.

Medical conditions that cause neck pain 

                  1. Neck pain may be caused by or related to medical conditions such as:

                  2. Cervical Spinal Stenosis

                  3. Cervical Spondylosis

                  4. Illnesses, such as meningitis, which cause inflammation around the

                      tissues of the brain and spinal cord.

                  5.Chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, or

                     ankylosing spondylitis

Torticollis (wryneck): Torticollis is

caused by severe muscle tightness or a shortened muscle on

one side of the neck, causing the head to be tilted to one side.

Referred pain: Referred pain occurs when

a problem in one place in the body causes pain in another

place. For example, a problem with your jaw or your heart can

cause neck pain.

Infection or a tumor in the neck area.

Signs and Symptoms

Neck pain takes many forms. Signs and symptoms of neck pain may include:

           1. Pain in your neck that may be sharp or dull

           2. Stiffness in your neck

           3. Difficulty going about your daily tasks because of pain or stiffness in

               your neck

           4. Shoulder pain in addition to neck pain, in some cases

           5. Back pain in addition to neck pain, in some cases

Help yourself to prevent neck pain

Take frequent breaks: Don’t sit in one place for a long time, such as your car or at your desk.

Arrange some of the items in your office that cause inconvenience. This will force you to get up, stretch or walk around.

Maintain good neck posture:

Adjust the seat of your computer or desk chair so that your hips are slightly higher than your knees. Your head and neck will naturally follow in the correct position. While traveling in a car, airplane or train, place a small pillow or rolled towel between your neck and a head rest to keep the normal curve in your neck.

Avoid too many pillows:

Avoid sleeping with too many pillows or falling asleep in front of the television with your head on the arm of a couch.

Exercise: Treat your body to a consistent regimen of stretching and strengthening to balance your muscle groups. This protects your neck as well as helping your whole body. Walking at any pace is excellent exercise for your neck. The rotation of the spine provides a great natural workout for the neck muscles.

Eat smart and Drink water:

Good nutrition and staying well hydrated are not only important to stay healthy, but vital in the healing process.

For more Health Tips:http://fitnus.blogspot.com/

DEBERA