Neck Pain Over the Holidays

neck pain while traveling over the holidays Core Chiropractic and Rehabilitation Brooklyn Ohio

Neck Pain Over the Holidays

Protecting your neck over the holidays

 

The holidays can be hard on your neck. Traveling, hosting guests, setting up decorations, and attending family events may require your body to move in ways it’s not used to doing. These activities can result in stiffness, soreness, or a sharp pain in the neck. 

Try these 4 tips to help keep your neck healthy and happy this holiday season.

 

1. Pack and travel smart

 

smart travel advice for neck pain holidays Core chiro rehab Brooklyn Ohio

Use a neck pillow. A travel-sized neck pillow helps keep your neck straight and upright so it doesn’t accidentally bend in an uncomfortable position.

Pack in multiple bags. Lifting luggage that’s too heavy can easily stress or injure your neck. Pack your travel items in multiple small bags instead of 1 large, heavy bag. Ask someone to help you take luggage in and out of your trunk or the overhead compartment on an airplane.

Bring heat/ice therapy. Heat therapy encourages blood flow and can reduce neck stiffness, and ice therapy helps reduce swelling and inflammation. So pack a heating pad, disposable heat wraps, and an ice wrap (or empty plastic bags you can later fill with ice) to use in case neck pain flares up.

 

2. Stick to a nutritious diet and exercise

 

eat healthy holidays Core chiro rehab Brooklyn OhioThe holiday season can throw off your daily routine, and exercise is often the first item to get cut from a shifting schedule. Eating habits often change this time of the year, too, as many people enjoy home-cooked meals and delicious desserts with family and friends.

But if you commit to exercising and eating nutritiously over the holidays, your neck will thank you. A balanced diet, which includes adequate protein and plenty of fresh vegetables, supplies vitamins and healing properties that your soft tissues need. And an exercise program can help improve your cervical spine’s strength and flexibility, which may reduce the risk for neck pain.

 

3. Save your energy and know your limits

 

holiday relaxing Brookyn Ohio Core Chiropractic rehabBefore the holidays arrive, consider which traditions and festivities are worth doing and which are too demanding. Some holiday activities, such as stringing up lights, baking cookies, and washing dishes are all physically strenuous and can cause or worsen neck pain.

Listen to what your body is telling you and decide ahead of time which activities to skip. Ask your family, friends, or neighbors to help carry out difficult chores. Take some time for yourself this holiday season, relaxing in bed with a good book or soaking in a warm bath.

 

4. Ask for gifts that help relieve neck pain

 

holliday gifts for neck pain Core Chiropractic Rehab BrooklynIf you exchange gifts with loved ones to celebrate the holidays, here are a few items you can put on your wish list:

Massage therapy gift certificate. Massage therapy, such as a Swedish massage or deep tissue massage, can help you relax, encourage blood flow to your soft tissues, and reduce your perception of pain.

Pillow. The right pillow is the one that has just the right height and firmness for you and will help keep your neck in a supported position with neutral alignment.

Neck massage device. If you want to treat neck pain at home, you can bring the massage to you. Research the best neck massagers and muscle rollers on the market.

Neck pain can be especially difficult to handle during the holiday season. Using this list, you can try a few tips to see what helps you find relief.

 

Originally published on Spine-Health

 


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better sleep osteoarthritis pain

9 Ways to Sleep Better with Osteoarthritis Pain

As if it’s not enough that your osteoarthritis bothers you throughout the day, pain and stiffness can also interrupt your ability to get a good night’s sleep.

This is bad news because poor sleep can cause pain to be worse—this creates a damaging cycle of pain and poor sleep.

If osteoarthritis pain and stiffness are keeping you from falling asleep or staying asleep, try following these 9 tips:

 

1 – Use heat therapy before bed

Ease a painful joint by using a heating pad for 15 to 20 minutes before bed. Or take a soothing bath for the same effect—just give yourself time to cool down afterward, because it’s hard to get to sleep if you’re overheated.

2 – Explore medication solutions

Insomnia and sleep problems may be the result of a medication you are taking to treat osteoarthritis pain or another condition. Talk with your doctor about switching medications or adjusting the timing of when you take them.

You may also be a good candidate for a prescription medication specifically to address insomnia. These medications can be very helpful but can be habit-forming and need to be taken with care.

3 – Take a nighttime pain reliever

There are several formulations of over-the-counter pain relievers specifically intended for use in at night to both relieve osteoarthritis pain and help you sleep better.

4 – Consider your mattress

A good mattress can make a big difference in your level of comfort and support as you sleep. For those with osteoarthritis, your mattress should be supportive but not too hard. If you can’t invest in a new mattress right now, consider adding a mattress topper.

5 – Use pillows strategically

Where and what type of pillows you use at night is important. If you have neck (cervical) arthritis, use a standard pillow that’s firm but not too high. For hip or knee arthritis, you may benefit from a wedge pillow next to you or a small pillow between your knees.

6 – Rule out sleep apnea

Those who are overweight or obese are at increased risk for both osteoarthritis and a sleep condition called sleep apnea, which causes patients to stop breathing and wake up abruptly several times a night. If you suspect you may have sleep apnea, talk with your doctor about undergoing a sleep study.

7 – Exercise and stretch

Your joints are meant to move—the more you keep them immobile, the stiffer and more painful they’ll become. Stay as active as you can and do stretches intended to maintain strength and range of motion in your osteoarthritis-affected joint.

8 – Practice good sleep hygiene

Follow habits that promote good sleep, such as:

  • Going to bed at the same time every night
  • Establishing a night routine to prepare your mind and body for sleep
  • Banning phones, TVs, and other electronics from the bedroom
  • Avoiding large meals and caffeine before bed

9 – Manage your osteoarthritis or other health conditions

The better your overall health, the less likely conditions like arthritis or others will disrupt your sleep.

Remember: osteoarthritis, chronic pain, and sleep problems are all treatable. If you’re struggling with poor sleep because of osteoarthritis pain, make an appointment to see us and explore your solutions.

Original article: Arthritis Health

 


If you’re suffering from osteoarthritis, come see us to find out about your options for treatment. Under our care, your treatment may include spinal adjustments, physical rehab, clinical massage, and stretching and strengthening exercises. We can also recommend natural, drug-free ways to control your pain and discomfort.

If you would like more information about our services and treatments available please contact us today!

Core Chiropractic & Rehabilitation

440-328-8487


Back Pain

5 Ways to Help Stop Back Pain

Roughly 8 out of 10 people suffer from back pain at some point during their lives.

Women, in particular, are prone to posture and back problems—thanks to toting around outrageously heavy purses, going through pregnancy, or giving one-hip rides to kids. Whether you’re in the midst of fighting the ache or just want to prevent it, here are some expert-endorsed quick-and-easy ways to wage your war on back pain.

Pass the broccoli, please

You know that calcium is key for strong bones, but Japanese researchers have identified something else you need: vitamin K. It’s believed that the vitamin, found in broccoli, spinach, and other dark leafy greens, helps calcium deposit in the bones, making them denser. The stronger your bones, the stronger your whole body—and the lower your chances of an injury that could cause back pain.

Lighten your load

If your purse or briefcase tips the scales at more than 10% of your weight, it’s too heavy. And you need to carry it right. Your best bet is a model with a long strap that lets you position it across your chest like a messenger bag. Can’t part with your shorter-strapped number? Switch shoulders every 20 minutes.

Sleep right

A harder bed may not be better for your back. A recent study in Spine found that people who slept on softer beds reported less lower-back pain than those who snoozed on harder ones. 

Pillows? Yours shouldn’t raise your head out of alignment with your spine. How to tell: If you’re a back sleeper, your chin shouldn’t press into your chest. If you’re a side sleeper, it shouldn’t curve up toward your shoulder.

Tighten those abs

Having strong core muscles (we’re talking abs here) can help protect your back from injury. Do this core-strengthening pelvic tilt 2 to 3 times per week: Lie on your back with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and lower back flattened. Pull in your belly button toward your spine, contracting your abs; your pelvis should lift slightly off the floor. 

Do 2 to 3 sets of 12 reps.

Aim for good posture

Sitting at a desk for eight (or more) hours a day can really do a number on your back. Make sure to sit with your back against your chair (get a lumbar pillow if your chair doesn’t allow this) and both feet flat on the floor.
Another option: Try using a stability ball as your desk chair—good posture is a must just to stay on the thing. Start off slow (20 minutes at a time), and if it feels good, stick with it.

 

Originally seen on Health

 

These 5 Tips not enough? 

Call today to alleviate your back pain and get your life back! 

Core Chiropractic & Rehabilitation

216-313-9044


seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder

Do these shorter, darker, and chillier days make your mood cloud over this time every year?

You’re not alone!

Roughly up to 20 percent of Americans report feeling tired or sad with the fewer hours of daylight in the late fall and winter months. With colder temperatures and crisp, blustery winds, it’s easy to give in and hit the snooze button one more time instead of dragging yourself to the gym before work — or, make a date with your couch, warm blankets, and Netflix instead of bundling up and getting dinner with family and friends.

While many people can still function even if they’re feeling a bit melancholy, for some, winter brings a clinical form of depression called Seasonal Affective Disorder, commonly (and ironically) referred to as SAD. Researchers estimate that at least 5% percent of the population experiences SAD symptoms during the shorter days of late-fall and winter, such as fatigue, overeating, loss of interest in activities and difficulty concentrating.

Fortunately, there are several easy ways to feel better and boost your mood if you’re experiencing an energy dip.

Here are some of the best-recommended ways to combat Seasonal Affective Disorder.

 

Rise and shine

The sun is rising earlier, so get up with the chickens, so to say. Bundle up and go for a morning walk around the block, to soak up some of that early morning sunshine.

Same as it ever was

Sticking to a normal routine helps keep your mood and day in balance. Don’t deviate from it if you feel blue, that’s your key to knowing you need to follow through. Don’t neglect your favorite activities just because it’s cold or getting dark early.

Garbage in garbage out

Don’t fall prey to loading up on sugar and comfort foods this time of year. Most people opt for sugary sweets because it gives them a temporary lift in mood, but come spring you’ll regret it with extra weight. Remember, you are what you eat!

Light it up

Consider getting light therapy or buying your own full spectrum UV light box. Research has shown that light therapy helps at least 50% of people who suffer from SAD. The bright light emitted from these devices helps the body awaken in the morning and decreases the hormone melatonin that keeps us asleep at night.

Hit Play

We don’t mean on the DVD player – get outside and enjoy yourself with loved ones this winter. From a friendly snowball fight with friends to cross-country skiing, ice skating, snowshoeing, or a simple hike on a groomed Metroparks path, get out there and find joy in wintertime activities.

Relax

A little downward dog might help lift you out of your funk. Try starting yoga or meditation to get your mind and body some uplifting energy this low light and energy season.

Prepare for take-off

If you have vacation time, book yourself a trip! Quality downtime and vacation are important to recharge and boost your mood. Studies show that people even experience pleasure and stress release from anticipating vacations. While you count down the days until your warm and sunny holiday, find ways to enjoy and be happy with the winter wonderland in your own backyard.

Get Adjusted

Studies show that getting chiropractic adjustments can help alleviate symptoms of depression. 

Our moods are regulated by our body’s chemistry; this chemistry in your organs, as well as your brain, are all regulated by the nervous system. Misalignment of the spine can cause pressure in the area of the brain stem which can cause interference neurologically and chemically.

Often people turn to medications that are used to alter their brain chemistry, but those looking for a non-medication therapy often find that re-aligning these vertebrae can do wonders for their mental state.

 


If you struggle with serious and continuous depressive symptoms, be sure to reach out to your healthcare provider to discuss your condition and options for treatment.


 

If you would like more information about the use of chiropractic care to deal with SAD, please contact us today!

Core Chiropractic & Rehabilitation

216-313-9044


natural pain relievers

4 Natural Pain Relievers

Living with chronic pain can be emotionally and physically exhausting, as your symptoms never seem to take time off.

 

By now, you’ve likely tried all sorts of treatments—but you may not have considered these four little-known natural pain relievers:

 

1. Spur the release of your endorphins

Endorphins are pain-inhibiting hormones that are naturally produced by your body. Endorphins inhibit pain by binding to the opioid receptors in your brain, and they work similar to opioid pain medications like oxycodone or morphine.

Any activity that raises your heart rate for an extended period will spur the release of pain-relieving endorphins into your system. But this raises an obvious problem: how do you exercise if you’re in so much pain? The solution may be to pick a water-based exercise or to get help from the right type of health professional—such as a physiatrist, chiropractor, or physical therapist.

 

2. Take a warm soak

Soaking your body in warm water can help relieve muscle discomfort and many types of arthritis pain. There are numerous options for a warm soak, including a bathtub, whirlpool tub, or a warm pool. Some people find that essential oils or Epsom salts improve the muscle-relaxation benefits associated with a warm soak.

The temperature of your water should be warm and pleasant—especially before bed. Hot water can make it hard to fall asleep by raising the temperature of your body.

If a soak isn’t for you, there are plenty of other heat therapy options for your pain. Try applying an electric blanket or using an adhesive back wrap that provides low-level heat over several hours.

 

3. Keep hydrated

Most people know that drinking plenty of water throughout the day is good for your overall health. But did you know that it may also help with your chronic pain? Drinking enough water can alleviate stiffness, and it also supports your blood flow—which enables healing nutrients and oxygen to reach the various structures of your body. In addition, water helps to flush toxins out of your muscles and other soft tissues, and as a bonus, it can prevent constipation (a side effect of many pain medications).

As a general rule, women need roughly 2 liters of water per day, while men need 3 liters.

 

4. Ease your chronic pain with ice

Ice and/or a cold gel pack can alleviate your pain by reducing inflammation and slowing down your nerve impulses. A great option for cold therapy is an ice massage, which may provide additional relief through the manipulation of your soft tissue.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Begin by freezing water in a paper cup overnight. Once the ice has hardened, you can peel away the top inch of the cup to expose the ice.
  • Lie on your side, and apply the ice in a 6-inch radius around the location of your pain. You can also lie on your stomach and have a partner apply the ice for you.
  • Make sure to limit your ice massage to 5 minutes to avoid possible ice burns.

All of the above natural pain relievers are not prescriptive. Instead, they are intended as options for you to consider as you work in tandem with your doctor to manage your chronic pain.

No single treatment option works for everyone, but try one of the above options today and you might find significant relief from your chronic pain.

 

Originally published on Spine Health


 

If you would like more information about how we can help you with your Chronic Pain issues, please contact us today!

Core Chiropractic & Rehabilitation

216-313-9044