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Langley Chiropractor's Blog

Holidays Can Be A Pain In The Neck

Holidays can be a pain in the neck if you relax too much.  BC’s Chiropractic Doctors offer a few suggestions for holidays.”After every holiday, people visit their family chiropractic doctor with physical complaints that are usually the result of the holiday,” says Dr. Don Nixdorf.Here are some back health tips on holiday to make your time off more enjoyable and pain free:

If you have to drive more than two hours to visit friends and relatives, take a break; get out of your vehicle and stretch. This temporarily restores normal posture, which will help prevent a recurrence of neck or low back conditions.

When loading your vehicle for the trip, organize your luggage and packages into smaller loads, as opposed to one large suitcase, cardboard box or carrying case.

Wear your seatbelt. Adjust vehicle headrests so that they are no more than two inches behind the centre of the back of the head. Many of the estimated 20 million car accident victims suffering whiplash injuries in North America could have prevented much of the injury had their vehicle seat headrests been adjusted properly.

It’s OK to be a couch potato this weekend, but don’t slouch on the sofa and don’t fall asleep on the recliner, as two or three vertebrae in the spine can assume a sharp angle. When you sit up, the normal movement isn’t restored. “We often see people walking into our offices with their heads sideways, because by slouching, the position of the joints irritates the nerves and blood vessels, causing muscle spasm,” says Dr. Nixdorf.

Avoid bending directly over the oven door to lift out the turkey. Crouch down, pull out the oven shelf, and use your legs for better balance. Avoid putting all the leverage on the lower spine. This helps reduce the sharp leverage on the lower spine.

With these few simple tips, the Chiropractic Doctors of BC wish everyone a healthy, happy holiday.

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Sciatica symptoms can increase in severity until the sciatic nerve becomes very, very angry.

Most commonly, sciatica results when a spinal disc ruptures in the lower lumbosacral region of the spine. Instead of acting as a gelatinous cushion between the bony vertebrae of the spine, the disc squeezes out from between the vertebrae and presses on one or more of the spinal nerves that form the sciatic nerve, causing inflammation. “Sciatica symptoms may come on slowly,” explains Dr. Nixdorf. When back stiffness and lack of flexibility, such as when you get into or out of a chair or car, are left untreated for as little as two or three weeks, says Nixdorf, symptoms can increase in severity until the sciatic nerve becomes very, very angry.

Who’s at risk?

Interestingly, people who sit for a living are at slightly higher risk of back related problems than people who are physical workers in forestry, mining, farming or construction, according to Dr. Don Nixdorf. “You would think that people in heavy industry might be predisposed to having more frequent back and sciatica-related symptoms,” says Nixdorf. “Not necessarily so.” Slumping at a desk or a computer for eight hours a day, five days a week, can aggravate compression of the spine, which, in turn, can lead to lower back stiffness, back pain and inflammation of the sciatic nerve.

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