NEWSLETTER The Newsletter About Your Health And Caring For Your Body
SPRING INTO A PAIN- FREE LIFE Getting to the Core of Back and Neck Pain
Back and neck pain are two of the most common issues that American adults experience, putting a huge physical and economic burden on working Americans by being both two of the leading needs for medical intervention and two of the most common causes people have to miss work. While these may feel like two separate issues, it is somewhat common that neck pain and back pain are actually related. Core strength can have a huge impact on your overall health and wellness, and when your core is weak, it could add up to weakness in your neck and back. NECK PAIN 101: There are a lot of reasons why neck pain may develop, including everything from sudden incidents like a car accident or a slip-and-fall injury, to more chronic issues, such as regularly hunching over a desk at work or even practicing poor posture. One of the biggest problems with neck pain is that it often triggers headaches, as the pain is so closely connected to the spine and nervous system. What is more, addressing neck pain is sometimes difficult as there is so much potential to cause more damage to the neck. This is why working with a physical therapist to address neck pain is wise. A physical therapist can help treat neck pain by improving range of motion, using targeted massage techniques, and by improving strength as needed. For example, in many situations, neck pain can be treated by improving core strength. BACK PAIN 101 : Severe back pain impacts more than half of the population, and many of those with pain in the back as a result of injury end up dealing with that pain long term. One of the biggest problems with back pain is that once it develops, it is difficult to work around it, and many people begin modifying their movements as a result, causing their back to compensate for the injury by putting pressure on other muscles that eventually just leads to more back pain. For this reason, back pain can frequently become a Catch-22 — avoiding the things that hurt your back could actually lead you to develop more pain in the future. Working with a physical therapist is the best way to cut your back pain issues in half.
Physical therapy can address back pain by helping to improve your range of motion, strengthen the muscles in your back and surrounding areas, and by using targeted massage to reduce tension. In many situations, working with a physical therapist to improve core strength can significantly reduce the severity of your back pain. CORE STRENGTH AND BACK PAIN: You may be surprised how frequently issues with the neck and back actually stem from issues with core strength. Your core refers to the muscles that make up your torso, including your abdomen. These muscles are called the core because they are at the center of your body, and they are necessary in just about every action that you engage in. Everything from walking and running and swimming to sitting and driving require you to engage your core. There are a lot of reasons to improve core strength outside of any existing neck or back pain. When you improve your core, you are likely to also improve your posture and thereby reduce your risk of developing further back pain in the future. Furthermore, the exercise that helps to improve core strength is often helpful in promoting weight loss, and for those who are overweight, this could also help reduce pain in the neck and the back. Sometimes, when your core is weak, it can cause you to experience added pressure on areas like your neck and back. There are a lot of ways that working with a physical therapist can help you improve your core strength. You may be encouraged to practice core exercises, for example, which may include abdominal crunches or leg lifts. Light weight-training activities are also frequently helpful, as are balance-based activities like yoga. If you haven’t spent much time building core strength in the past, then working with a physical therapist is a great place to start. Your physical therapist will guide you through proper postures and movements to reduce further risk of injury. For more information about how to start improving your core, contact us.
SERVICES & THERAPIES :
• Wrist / Hand Pain • Wellness / Balance Problems • Ankle / Foot Pain
• Knee Pain • Sports Injuries • Shoulder Pain
• Physical Therapy • Low Back Pain • Neck Pain
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