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correct your posture, poor posture

How Poor Posture Can Affect your Digestion

Everyone’s guilty of poor posture once in a while, but if you often catch yourself hunched over when you’re sitting, standing, or walking, you could actually be harming your health. Bad posture can lead to a number of problems, including commonly known issues like back pain and spinal issues. But, constantly slumping can also have a variety of less talked about side effects, including causing digestive problems. 

The Effects of Poor Posture on Digestion

When you eat, your diaphragm works to move food through your oesophagus and down to your gut, with a system to prevent stomach acid from rising up and into your mouth. But, if you eat in a slouched position, you put a whole lot of tension on your diaphragm that its not used to, causing it to stop working as it should. The result of this can be a mixture of acid reflux, heartburn. and bloating – neither of which are very comfortable.  So, if you find yourself having to take tablets after you eat to prevent these unwanted problems, it could be time to take a look at your posture as you eat instead.

Tips to Improve Your Posture

If you think you might have some issues with posture and digestion, there are plenty of ways you can improve yours and help your food go down a little better. 

  • Eating at work – If you eat at your desk at work frequently it’s likely your hunching over your table, bending down to eat, which definitely won’t help with your digestion. To help stop this, make sure you have a comfortable chair that’s optimized to help posture, and hold what you’re eating in your hands, bringing the food to your mouth rather than going down to it.
  • Eating at home – A lot of us have switched to eating at the table for slouching on the sofa, which is terrible for posture. Try and make more of an effort to sit at the table on a proper chair when you eat; this simple change will do wonders for your posture. As when at your desk, make sure you’re bringing the food to your mouth rather than bending to it, too.
  • Be mindful – Try and think of your posture as you eat, making it a conscious decision to sit straight if your automatic response is to slouch. Eventually, you’ll retrain your brain to automatically sit like this.
  • Workout – Strengthening your core muscles is a great way to improve your posture and help digestion. Take a look at yoga or pilates – both have great, gentle exercises that anyone can do to improve core strength.

Postural Correction Services

At Canary Wharf Chiropractic, we can help correct bad posture to ease a whole range of problems, including posture-related digestion. Our experienced chiropractitioners can show you how you should be standing and sitting, analyse how you currently are, and direct you to the right correctional treatments. 

If you’d like to know more, get in touch with our team and we’ll answer any questions you have, or book in for a consultation today.

Facet Joint Osteoarthritis

What is Facet Joint Osteoarthritis and how to treat it?

Facet Joint Osteoarthritis is also referred to as degenerative arthritis, it is a condition that causes the breakdown of cartilage between your facet joints.

Who is prone to Osteoarthritis?

Generally, Facet Joint Osteoarthritis becomes more common with age, meaning the older you get, the more likely you are to develop the condition. With Facet Joint Osteoarthritis, patients usually notice two main processes of the condition, which we’ll discuss below.

The first, is a breakdown of the cartilage in the patients facet joints. These are the bits in your spine which link the vertebrae together. The second, is the development of abnormal bony growths. These growths are referred to as osteophytes or bone spurs and they develop on the vertebrae.

What are the symptoms of Facet Joint Osteoarthritis?

Facet Joint Osteoarthritis is a degenerative process, and for most people who suffer from it, it can cause intense pain, aching, stiffness and decreased mobility. The reason for the pain is the lack of cartilage, as the joints and vertebrae aren’t protected anymore. The process itself (highlighted above) may take years to occur, and many people notice their symptoms on a small scale, or in tandem with other spinal issues.

How can you stop the pain?

Most people consider non-surgical treatments to be the most effective when dealing with Facet Joint Osteoarthritis. Treatments that focus on restoring movement and motion, and relieving pressure and pain tend to be the most life-changing for those who suffer from Facet Joint Osteoarthritis.

Treatments that work for Osteoarthritis below: 

Chiropractic sessions: Manipulation of the muscles and gentle stretching can help relieve pressure and pain and realign your body to ensure weight is distributed properly.

Stretching exercises: Focussing on the leg muscles (hamstring and quads) as well as the hip joints, can help strengthen the back. It can also help build flexibility and mobility, which can ease a lot of the pain associated with Osteoarthritis.

Water therapy: This can be a useful form of therapy for Osteoarthritis as it allows the patient to be ‘weightless’ which often means movements and motion causes less pressure and less pain. During water therapy you may practise a range of motion and movements, that would ordinarily be too painful.

Acupuncture: Medical Acupuncture can help encourage the body to release important healing and restorative chemicals, which can help with pain relief and healing.

Sports Massage: Sports Massage is a key treatment to relaxing muscle and joint pain, and keeping joints nimble and flexible too. Regular sports massages can help aid in pain relief and pain management.

How does Good Breathing Prevent Muscle Pain?

How does Good Breathing Prevent Muscle Pain?

Muscle pain, whether it be from an injury or as part of a chronic condition, can be a debilitating condition to live with every day. For many people, small movements and simple tasks such as walking can be easily taken for granted. However, for those suffering with constant muscle pain, the smallest tasks can often be the most difficult.

If you’re suffering with regular muscle pain, you’ll have likely sought out many different ways to cope with the pain. For those with more mild cases of muscle pain, certain creams or heat patches may provide the much needed relief. However, for people with more intense pain, it’s likely you’ll be combining a few different methods to ease the pain.

One method of pain relief, is actually (and surprisingly) breathing correctly. Breathing, when it is controlled and considered, can aid your body into lowering pain levels, and can help you focus on getting through the pain too.

Diaphragmatic breathing 

When we talk about breathing ‘correctly’ we’re talking about using your diaphragm. This method of breathing tends to allow us to breathe more deeply, and is different to ‘normal’ breathing because it expands out stomach, instead of our ribcage. 

This kind of deep breathing is considered healthier, and also allows our bodies to better digest the oxygen in the air. But how does this help with muscle pain and chronic pain?

Reason 1: It helps to relax the muscles. 

Breathing deeply helps to relax your muscles. You’ll feel it as you take deep breaths, that your muscles naturally relax. 

Reason 2: Distraction strategy

Deep breathing is a fantastic distraction from pain. If you breath deeply whilst counting (for example) you’ll notice your brain focussing more on the numbers and counting than on the pain itself. 

Reason 3: Reverses physical symptoms 

There are many physical symptoms of pain, and one of the main ones is anxiety. The quickening of breath, clenching of fists (etc) are all things our body does when it senses pain or danger. By breathing deeply, we’re relaxing our body and telling it not to panic. So we’re reversing those physical symptoms of pain and anxiety. 

Reason 4: It increases our oxygen supply 

We all know that oxygen is what gives us life and energy. Oxygen is perhaps the most important thing we intake and we do it through breathing. The better our breathing techniques are, and the deeper our breaths, the more oxygen we’re taking in. The more oxygen our body has, the better it can function. 

How chiropractic care can help with leg pain

How chiropractic care can help with leg pain

If you’ve been suffering with leg pain, whether it’s rooted in muscle discomfort, joint problems or even a trapped nerve – looking for a solution is likely you biggest priority. Living with leg pain is difficult and make even the smallest tasks (such as walking to the shops) painful and uncomfortable.

For many people seeking a solution and relief from the pain quickly, they may turn to seeking help from independent practitioners, but not knowing with kind of treatment is going to be best for leg pain. If you’ve been looking into chiropractic care as a solution to leg pain, but you’re not sure if it will help – hopefully we can reassure you here.

Yes, a chiropractor may be able to help

Chiropractors don’t just deal with spinal pain, in fact they offer treatments to people suffering with lots of different kinds of pain. Leg pain is one of the most common types of pain, behind spinal or back pain that a chiropractor will help patients with.

Leg injuries can be caused by a variety of things, including:

  • Injury
  • Fracture
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Nerve damage
  • Sciatica
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Infection
  • Arthritis
  • Over use
  • Muscle strain
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Tendonitis

With the human body, often pain is linked to other parts of the body – without you even realising it. This is especially the case for leg pain linked to sciatica, over-use, muscle strain and nerve damage. For example, pain in your left leg may actually be stemming from your left hip or lower back. A chiropractor will be able to help identify and treat this over time, gradually bringing balance and harmony back to your legs and joints.

During your treatment, chiropractors will deliver a gentle, non-invasive, and non-medication therapy. Chiropractic adjustments can help to reduce your joint restrictions, or misalignments, which can result in reduced inflammation and improved function too. This isn’t restricted to the spine – this can be across many areas of the body.

If you’re unsure, just ask

Most chiropractors will offer an initial consultation where they will discuss your pain with you in-depth and in detail, and aim to identify the causes and treatment cause needed going forward. It’s during this time that they will be able to outline the length of treatment, but also the effectiveness too. If you’re still unsure about whether a chiropractor can help with your leg pain, the best thing to do is ask during this consultation.

Your chiropractor will be able to look over your legs, and your joints and assess whether or not chiropractic care is the right choice for your situation. In some cases it may not be, and they may be able to refer someone else who can help.

Back Cracking chiropractor adjusting woman's neck

Top Myths About Back Cracking and Other Joints

Sometimes our bodies make strange noises, from a gurgling tummy to popping joints and bones. Many people are able to purposely crack their joints, with the most common being the knuckles, neck and back. Back cracking and clicking of the joints can be alarming whether it’s deliberate or not, and the rumour is that it can even cause arthritis.

Before we debunk the myths about back cracking and joint clicking, let’s find out what’s actually happening when we move the joint and hear a crack.

Why do our joints crack?

It took decades for researchers to figure out what’s happening inside our bodies when our joints crack. Some people feel the need to crack joints, and experience relief once they have ‘popped.’ When muscle joints are pulled apart, the pressure is reduced and small bubbles of gas are released from the joint fluid. It’s almost like creating a vacuum within the joint, which makes a popping noise as it collapses.

The gas takes a while to dissolve in the joint fluid, which is why when joints are cracked they can’t be re-cracked straight away. It’s also been found that joints temporarily increase the range of motion after they have been cracked, thanks to lowering the pressure.

Myth Number 1: Knuckle cracking causes arthritis in the hands

This is an old wives’ tale that has been passed around for decades, however there is no evidence to support it. People are often grossed out by knuckle cracking, but studies have proven that it doesn’t cause long term damage or arthritis – and could actually be good for you. It’s strange that this common belief only applies to the knuckles, as plenty of other joints get cracked regularly including knees, hips, toes and the spine.

Myth Number 2: Back cracking is painful

The cracking that occurs in the back is the same as the joint cracking in the hands, and any knuckle cracker will tell you that it’s painless and actually brings relief. Professional spine adjustments by a chiropractor may look and sound painful, but they do not cause any immediate pain in the affected joint.

Myth Number 3: Only old people get joint pain

It is definitely widely perceived that you only suffer from joint pain as a part of ageing. While many people do develop arthritis and aches and pains as they grow older, joint pain, back pain and arthritis can actually occur at any age.

If you feel like you need your back cracking, find out about professional spinal adjustments at Canary Wharf Chiropractic.

image of women holding mans hand, see a chiropractor

Notice any of these Symptoms? See a Chiropractor

You might have never considered visiting a chiropractor when you experience pain or health problems – however it could be the ideal treatment your body needs. People often think of a chiropractic clinic only after something goes wrong, for example if you’re in a car accident. However chiropractic medicine is a great way to prevent injury in the first place.

It’s important for us to listen to our bodies, especially when we experience painful symptoms. For many ailments, such as back pain or frequent headaches, our GP is the first point of call. You’ll be given some painkillers and asked to come back if things don’t improve. In reality, on the NHS you could be in pain for months before it is properly investigated and you find the root cause of the problem. Instead, a chiropractor could perform manual therapy to relieve the pain straight away. Read more