It can either be a positive or negative influence on your spinal health, depending on how proactive you are in the workplace. Tech pain is a dystopian 21st century term that encompasses conditions like:
The workplace is a battleground for your spine
- Text neck
- Gamer’s thumb
- Tennis elbow
- Lower back pain
- Systemic muscle tension and stiffness
- Piriformis syndrome
…especially when they develop from overuse of technology, poor ergonomics, lack of attention to posture and inactivity.
Workplace wellness means a change in the way we think about our bodies in a work setting
If you are like the majority of Americans, you are spending up to 23 hours a week in front of a device (we would wager many more for some). Most of that time will be in a position that is not natural for our spines- whether it be head forward, shoulders rounded, or sitting with the lumbar unsupported. So the first step toward establishing workplace wellness is being aware of how we interact with technology. Make sure that your work station is properly adjusted so that you are forced into working in a healthy posture.
The next step is to take frequent breaks from technology, whether they be micro-breaks at your desk that involve quick stretches; or longer breaks that involve walking, drinking water and generally alleviating the tension that accrues during a day at the office. If you are interested in getting real about workplace wellness, please don’t hesitate to give our office in Houston a call to schedule an appointment today.
Running: the good, bad and ugly for spinal health
Running is a wonderful boost for aerobic fitness, circulation, muscle tone and endurance. For those who run, it is an integral part of feeling well and the mental uplift that can be gained from a simple circuit is an indelible part of life. But running also poses clear dangers to the spine: the repetitive jarring action involved in each footfall increases compression to the discs and joints of the spine, causing significant wear and tear compared to those who don’t run. Your back muscles also receive a significant amount of strain as they vie to keep your spine upright despite the fatigue that is setting in. So how do we keep running despite the clear and present risk factors?
We keep you running and injury free
Simply being aware of running’s risk factors is the first place to start. At Greenway Plaza Chiropractic, we work with runners to counsel them on proper running posture that minimizes the wear and tear on your spine. This includes how you hold your body, length of stride and the biomechanics involved in initiating and stabilizing the running motion.
If you can master the posture and biomechanics of running, all you need is a good pair of running shoes that you change regularly, and to vary the surfaces you run on. These are the best ways to lower the risks for back pain and spinal injury that are ubiquitous in the running world. For more information on how to maintain a high level of spinal health while still running, give our office in Houston a call to schedule an appointment today.
Stop lifting with your back!
It is a bad, lazy habit that has the potential to cause herniated discs, lower back pain and a whole host of other spine-related injuries. The problem is that bending forward (flexion) increases the amount of compression on your spine; when you add weight-bearing to this scenario, the risks are multiplied and a previously-vulnerable disc can more easily rupture. But avoiding injury is easy- it just takes an extra few seconds to perform a proper lift.
A healthy lift will save your spine
Chances are you remember the maxim: lift with your legs, not your back. Well add in this maxim: keep your chest facing forward. When facing an object that needs to be lifted, squat down close to the object. Get a good grasp on the object and keep your chest facing forward in order to keep your spine as straight as possible. As an extension of this, make sure that your head does not curve downward but instead remains in alignment at the top of your spine. Now, generate power from your legs and propel yourself upward, bearing the weight close to your body. And there you go! A successful lift that has mitigated a great portion of the chance for injury.
Smarter lifting is smarter living
At Greenway Plaza Chiropractic, we help people enact smarter spinal health habits. You may be surprised to find that the majority of these are easy, minute changes that will make a big difference in spinal wellness. Give our office in Houston a call to start making drastic improvements in the way your back feels today.
Why drink water?
We’re so glad you asked. Water is life- it is health and it is wellness; it even affects happiness. It affects everything from cognitive function to the digestive system; from a chiropractor’s perspective, it has important applications in spinal health and circulation. Hydration is a key to keeping the intervertebral discs hydrated, the spinal joints lubricated and everything moving properly. If you are ready to get serious about staying hydrated, check out our simple schedule for fluid consumption:
Start with a baseline of 8 glasses per day
Establish a regular schedule:
- 1 glass when you wake up
- 1 before and 1 after each meal
- 1 before you go to bed or in the evening time
If you can’t get on with the flavorless taste of water, consider fruit-additives or flavor-enhanced water drinks that have minimal sugar added. And remember that coffee, soda and sports drinks do count toward your daily ration but they shouldn’t make up 100% of your fluid intake; try to aim for a 1:1 ratio non-water:water at the very least.
This is the simplest thing you can do for your spinal health
At Greenway Plaza Chiropractic, we are chock-full of ideas for taking advantage of simple methods for improving spinal health. Hydration is just the tip of the iceberg- give our office in Houston a call to schedule an appointment and start improving your spinal health today.