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How A Sneeze Can Lead To Back Pain

Back Pain

Is Back Pain Really Nothing to Sneeze at?

The idea that a sneeze can actually injure your back is not as farfetched as it may seem. It’s a fact that sneezes trigger back pain misery and, in some case, may be the first step in the painful journey wrought by the inclusive condition we call a “bad back.”

It is difficult indeed to acknowledge that a sneeze could have this kind of impact on your spinal health.

After all, you may have lived an active life up to this point, doing all kinds of things that may not be good for your back— playing football and enduring and initiating tackles and blocks, as well physical labor requiring lifting heavy objects, often incorrectly, and all kinds of pushing, pulling and straining.

It is almost laughable, therefore, that after taking such risks over all those years, something like a sneeze could embark you on a voyage through back pain misery, including slipped or herniated discs, upper and lower back spasms that may, in themselves, lead to back injury, as well as, in extreme cases, paralysis of the limbs. It is quite probable that because of the aforementioned activities a disc may be on the precipice of herniation, or protruding from the spine, which means that at least one part of the spine may be vulnerable to any jolt or spasm. Stress, pressure and the jarring impact of a violent sneeze can indeed cause harm, especially if you are not in a stable position.

Sneeze“If you already suffer from musculoskeletal issues, sneezing can make matters worse for you,” reports the Accident and Injury Center, which suggests bracing yourself for stabilization and maintaining the natural arch of your back.

Consider that most of us who suddenly sneeze with people nearby, politely turn away just before the sneeze. This results in turning the head and twisting the spine as it is jolted by this convulsive expulsion.

If you experience sudden sharp pain down the spine after a forceful sneeze, you might want to check it out with your chiropractor or family doctor, who may refer you to a specialist if disease is already present.

Analyzing a sneeze indicates that it does indeed have potential for injury, and the spine— especially one already compromised by injury or deterioration— takes on the brunt of the impact. It’s like launching a missile. You arm the launch by holding your breath and therefore tightening the chest muscles, increasing the air and pressure in your lungs.

The result of a so-called violent sneeze is high-pressured expulsion of mostly air and droplets of mucous leaving the body. The velocity is nowhere near 100 miles an hour as recent laboratory testing has disproved.

It just feels like it at times.

—Call us today at (201) 651-9100 for an appointment at Oakland Spine & Physical Therapy…

5 Stretches to Relieve the Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal Tunnel Stretches

It is no secret that as a society we have become accustomed to doing a lot of writing, texting and typing in our daily lives. As much as we think that it has little to no effect on us, it can. In fact, constantly putting a strain on both our wrists and hands can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. Luckily, there are many different stretches and exercises that can be done to help alleviate the pain, as well as prevent future symptoms. If you start feeling symptoms of pain, numbness, or tingling in the hand, wrist or elbow, try out some of these stretches:

1. Finger Extension

This simple and easy exercise can be done anywhere. With your arms extended straight out in front of your body, begin with your hands in a fist position. Slowly begin to open your hand until your fingers are pointed straight out, then spread them apart from each other as far as you can. Return to the starting position and repeat for 5 to 10 minutes, doing this multiple times a day.

2. Wrist Bends

Wrist bends are another great stretch to help relieve your pain. Begin with one arm extended out in front of your body along with your hand and fingers, your palm should be facing the floor. With your other hand, slowly start to lift your out-stretched hand by its fingertips and softly pull the hand upward toward your body. Once your hand is in the upright position, hold this position for about 30 seconds and then release, switch to your other hand after. Repeat this stretch as needed throughout the day.

3. Wrist Lifts

This stretch is a little more involved, as it requires a lightweight dumbbell. Sitting down at a desk or table, rest your forearm on the table while your hand is hanging over the edge. With the dumbbell in hand, slowly lift your wrist until it is level with the table while also keeping your arm flat on the table. Do this motion about 10 times, once a day.

4. Thumb to Finger

Possibly the simplest stretch yet are these finger exercises. Begin with your hand and fingers stretched straight out. Using your thumb as a meeting point, bring each finger one-by-one to the thumb, making the shape of an O. Do this about 5 to 10 times on each hand and repeat as needed throughout the day.

5. Stress Ball

Hold a stress ball in your hand with your palm upright, this stretch is as easy as squeezing the ball and releasing, repeating this motion about 10 times.

Our highly trained, dedicated and caring team is committed to relieving Carpal Tunnel Syndrome pain and improving your life. And our SAME DAY GUARANTEE* is our way of showing you just how committed we are. Call us in the morning…see us in the afternoon!

Whiplash Injury Prevention – Part II

Whiplash Injury Prevention

Last month, we discussed whiplash injury prevention by focusing on the physical characteristics of crashes. This included information about head restraints, collision speed, seat back position, body size differences, air bags, and more. This month, we’ll focus on the MOST important aspect of whiplash prevention: driver distraction!

According to a survey of 6,000 drivers conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 20% of those surveyed in the 18-20 years old age group and 30% of those 21-34 years of age claimed texting does not affect their driving.

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Chronic Pain and Whiplash

Whiplash Treatment

Most sprains and strains typically take six weeks to recover, provided the patient receives proper care, which may include self-management strategies. However, something is different about a whiplash associated disorders (WAD) injury in that many patients do not recover.

At the Whiplash 2017 Symposium held in Australia, Dr. Michele Sterling stated, “Whiplash associated disorders are a costly burden to Australian society. Up to 50% of people who experience a whiplash injury will never fully recover. Whiplash is resistant to treatment and no early management approach has yet been shown to prevent chronic pain. We are hoping this study will provide a promising treatment for chronic pain.”

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Neck Pain and the Facet Joints

Neck Pain

Neck pain is one of those conditions that virtually everyone has had at some point in time. The degree of how it can affect one’s life is highly variable—from minimal functional limitations to total disability. So where does neck pain come from and why are the “facet joints” so important?

The anatomy of a vertebrae in the spine is quite unique. There are seven vertebrae that make up the cervical spine. The top vertebra in the neck is called the atlas (C1), which basically swivels around the axis (C2). The atlas and axis allow us to rotate our head, such as when checking traffic or looking over our shoulder. The top two vertebrae (c1 and c2) are uniquely shaped, while the remaining cervical vertebrae (c3-7) are very similar in appearance with a vertebral body in the front and a bony ring with spinous process on the back that protects the spinal cord.

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Why Carpal Tunnel Syndrome May Be More Dangerous Than You Think

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a very common condition. According to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), CTS ranks SECOND among the major disabling diseases and illnesses in ALL private industries. The BLS states that workers with CTS may eventually have to give up their livelihood. They cite one study in which almost half of all CTS patients changed their jobs within 30 months following their diagnosis. Due to the controversy surrounding the issue of CTS and worker’s compensation, workers do not always receive compensation benefits.

The KEY to long-term cost containment associated with CTS is EARLY DIAGNOSIS and PREVENTION! The challenge is getting the worker to identify early symptoms and NOT feel intimidated to report them, which could then lead to prompt care and possibly job modifications, resulting in the best chance of preventing a more complicated and far more costly problem.

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