Will You Be Doing Your Christmas Shopping Online?

The clocks have gone back, half term is over and the countdown to Christmas is underway. For many people this means one thing starting the Christmas shopping.

In the good old days this meant hours of parading around shops coming up with ideas and finding the perfect gifts. However, in the digital age we live in, it means opening up the laptop and spending the hours searching online for the perfect gifts.

If you are an online shopper then our chiropractors want to remind you that shopping from the comfort of your own home can have its own hazards. In particular hunching over you laptop on your sofa or sitting with bad posture in front of your PC can be harmful to your back.

Before starting on your online Christmas shopping be sure to set your self up to maintain good posture and reduce the risks of back pain.

Our Pain Prevention page on our website has a great video you can watch to ensure you maintain a good posture when using your computer. Take some timeout now to watch it and keep your back safe.

Back Safe – Back To School

The Bank Holiday Weekend is over and for most parents their attention will be turned to preparing for the new school term. For some this will be the first time with all the excitement and trepidation that brings. Whether your children are heading off to school for the first time, starting a new school or simply moving up a class, our chiropractors at Newcastle Chiropractic Clinic want to help you to keep your child’s back safe with these few tips:

Backpacks

Backpacks are a great carry option, however, there are some things to be aware of.

The backpack needs to be carried and adjusted properly. The backpack should be carried on both shoulders with the straps adjusted to ensure that the backpack rests as close as possible to your child’s back.

Most children carry way to much weight in their bags. It’s a good practice to empty out the contents on a regular basis and remove unnecessary things from the bag.

Posture

Maintaining a good posture is important for a healthy spine. Nagging your child to sit up straight or stand up straight may not get you very far. To help improve posture the British Chiropractic Association (BCA) has developed a simple 3 minute programme. The programme has been designed for people of all ages so you can join in with your children! You can watch the video below.

Our team of chiropractors in Newcastle under Lyme wish your children all the best for a new school term.

The Many Benefits Of Good Posture

Having good posture is an important part of remaining healthy.  It helps you avoid back pain and premature wear on your bones, improves lung performance, and much more.  In this article, we will explain what good posture is before explaining the many benefits that it provides.

What is good posture?

Posture is the form that your body takes when you are sitting, standing, and laying down.  Maintaining “good” posture is positioning your body so there is less strain placed upon your body’s muscles and ligaments when in these positions.

It requires your body to be as close to its natural shape as possible.  So if you are sitting down, this would mean:

  • Keeping your chin up and looking forward
  • Keeping your shoulders back (not slouching)
  • Bending your knees at a right angle
  • Keeping your feet flat on the floor
  • Keeping your back straight enough that all 3 natural curves of the spine are present.

Sitting with good posture distributes weight more evenly across your muscle groups — helping you avoid neck, shoulder and back pain.  It also allows you to comfortably work for longer periods and avoid some serious long-term health problems.

Having a chair with lumbar support will help you maintain good back posture.

What are the benefits of good posture?

Protects your future health

Having good posture will keep your joints correctly aligned, protecting the joint surfaces from abnormal wear-and-tear.  By preventing this type of wear-and-tear, you can lower your risk of various illnesses including arthritis and postural hunchback.

It makes it easier to breathe

The diaphragm is a large muscle that is responsible for respiration.  When the diaphragm moves, it changes how much pressure there is within the thorax — causing air to either enter or exit the lungs.

Posture affects breathing because it changes how much room the diaphragm has to move.  If you are slouched in a chair or while walking, the diaphragm cannot contract or expand as easily, preventing you from taking deep breaths.  As soon as you correct your posture, you will immediately notice how much easier it is to breathe.  This is a particularly useful benefit for anyone who has a health condition that affects their breathing.

Can help prevent back pain
Developing good posture can eliminate back pain caused by stressed muscles and poor joint alignment.  It does so by actively reducing the strain placed on the muscles and joints by spreading weight across the entire body.  This ensures that certain muscles or joints are not overworked or damaged.

Over time, having good posture will even improve the alignment of your spine, which will improve the condition of your back and reduce the risk of back injuries.  You will be less likely to suffer from herniated discs, muscle strains or other back problems. 

Improved physical performance

Good posture requires the use of more muscle groups.  Not only does this reduce the chances of straining a single muscle, it can lead to an improvement in overall physical performance.  Having the ability to engage muscles more evenly will help you perform better during daily activities and any sports that you play. 

Strengthens the core

If you have already made improvements to your sitting posture, you will have noticed that your abdominal muscles feel more engaged.  Your abdominals will be “sharing the load” with your back muscles as they keep your torso stable.  The more you improve your posture, the stronger your core will get, thus improving the alignment of your spine, reducing stress on your back muscles, and improving your mobility.

Makes you look more attractive
Have you ever seen an actor or actress on a talk show?  Did you notice how impeccable his or her posture was?  Actors and actresses concentrate on having good posture because they understand how much it affects their appearance.  By sitting tall in their seat and keeping their chin up, they will look much more beautiful or handsome to the viewers at home.  You will gain the same benefits as you improve your posture.

Improved digestion of food

Sitting or standing with good posture will ensure your internal organs are in their natural position.  This makes it easier for the body to digest food and perform other important functions like maintaining good blood circulation. 

Can improve your mood

Researchers from the University of San Francisco have discovered that having good posture can help improve a person’s mood.  They found that improved posture could also increase energy levels and reduce the risk of mental illnesses like depression.

Improving your posture can deliver some amazing benefits to your health and lifestyle.  If you are interested in developing good posture, talk to a chiropractor or general practitioner.  You can also use online resources like NHS choices to learn more.

Is Life Damaging Your Spine?

Is modern life becoming a pain in the neck? Are you like the millions of people who spend hours on end every day using a Smartphone or another mobile device? If so, you could be at risk of “text neck”, a new age epidemic that could lead to permanent damage.

You probably don’t put that much thought into the hundreds of messages you send every week on your Smartphone, but texting it is a dangerous habit. The posture we adopt as we stare at our phones significantly increases the stress on the neck and can lead to excessive wear and tear. This is how bad it can be: our heads weigh between 10lb and 12lb, but as we bend our heads downwards to use our phones, the effective weight on our necks increases – a lot! At a 15-degree angle, the head weighs about 27lb, and rises to 60lb at 60 degrees!

With most of us now spending an average of two to four hours a day with our heads dropped down, this results in about 700 to 1,400 hours a year of excess stresses on the cervical spine! This can cause head pain, neck pain, arm pain and even numbness.

Eventually, in conjunction with a sedentary lifestyle, “text neck” could lead to serious consequences. With “text neck” on the rise as more and more people carry out their lives over a mobile phone, it’s important that we’re all aware of how to reduce our risk of developing this modern condition.

The best thing anyone can do to lower the risk of “text neck” is to use voice recognition and make phone calls instead of text messages. It’s also important to take regular breaks and alter your texting positions to avoid problems. You can find a list of useful exercises on the NHS website.

Modern technology moves at a quicker speed than the human body can adapt to, and this is not the first time we have been warned about the dangers of texting.  In 2011, mobile phones were blamed for an increase in pedestrian deaths in the US, with some towns even considering issuing fines for people who text while walking.  Then of course, there was “Blackberry thumb” (repetitive strain injury caused by texting) and “iPad hand” (aches and pains caused by swiping and typing on a tablet).

The list of ailments grows longer with every new piece of technology, and while we can’t ever expect anyone to ditch their devices, we can all put the measures in place to stay healthy as we move with the times.

Try This To Help Improve Your Posture

Did you know that your posture could be contributing to your back pain?

Our chiropractor in Newcastle under Lyme cannot stress enough how important it is to have and maintain good posture. The good news is that there are some simple things you can do to  improve your posture and help reduce the risk of back pain.

The British Chiropractic Association (BCA) have developed a great programme, designed to improve posture and help prevent back pain called Straighten Up UK. The programme is designed to be done on a daily basis – just like brushing your teeth!

It’s a set of simple, three minute straighten up exercises. The programme is divided into three simple sections:

  1. Stars: Warm Up
  2. Flying Friends: Posture Care
  3. Core Balance: Finish the Session

Whatever your age you can participate. However, check with your health care provider before undertaking any new form of new exercise.

Here is a video for you to follow:

Easy Health Tips for 2018

It’s January and you’re probably feeling bombarded with advice on healthy living. From diet fads to miracle weight loss gadgets, every page we turn and channel we flick to will no doubt promise us a quick and easy path to our New Year health goals. But here, our Stoke on Trent chiropractor sorts out the myths from the facts with our top 5 ways to improve your health this January:

1: Do not ‘go on a diet’; even if Vanessa Feltz’s two-week tummy trimming recipes guarantee to shred you of all your festive weight, don’t go on a diet. Instead, switch to healthier eating habits that you can continue long term. When you lose weight gradually, you are more likely to keep it off.

2: Eat a varied diet. Look for different, brightly coloured fruits and vegetables as these provide plenty of nutrients.

3:  Exercise regularly. Activities such as walking, jogging and cycling are easy enough to fit into your weekly routine and will help to improve your overall health and fitness.

4: Laugh a lot. Not only does laughing release the happy chemicals in your brain, but it also strengthens your tummy muscles and relaxes knotted muscles.

5: Stand up straight. A good posture offers a host of health benefits, including a healthier spine.

It doesn’t have to be complicated or costly to make a positive difference to your health this year. Sometimes, it’s the simplest things that have the biggest impact.

 

 

Back to Work, Back to Back Pain?

January is in full swing, and for many of us it’s back to the daily grind of alarm clocks, commutes and deadlines. It’s a tough month, but if you work in an office, it could get even tougher. According to our Newcastle under Lyme chiropractor, hunching over a computer is a leading reason why so many office workers end up with crippling back pain. But a few small changes in the way you work can make your pain disappear. This is what you need to be doing ASAP:

Keep your head up

When you’re working at your keyboard, focus on aligning your head and neck right above your shoulders instead of hunching over or straining forward.

Keep your mouse close

Ideally, your mouse should be placed right next to your keyboard so you don’t have to overreach or twist your shoulder, arm, or wrist when clicking.

Choose your chair wisely

Pick a chair that allows your lower back to rest comfortably against a lumbar support. You should also be able to tilt the back of the chair so that it’s very slightly reclined.

If you suffering from back pain why not make an appointment to visit our experienced chiropractors at Newcastle Chiropractic Clinic.