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Suffer with neck pain in Bridgend, or any other aches and pains that you could do without, then welcome to the news pages of Youngs' Spinal Health. Your mobile chiropractic clinic serving Bridgend and the surrounding area.


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The Happy Commuter

We all spend a fair amount of time commuting, new research from the TUC has found that the average commute is just over 52 minutes per day.

This can play a large part the development of back ache, The British Chiropractic Association has found that one in three commuters (32%) are suffering from back pain. With this in mind, Young's Spinal Health has some great advice for travel-worn commuters.

Driving
Commuting by car may be seen, by some, like the easy route, but driving remains a key trigger of back pain, contributing significantly to the length of time spent sitting inactive each day at both work and home. Sitting down can put twice as much pressure on the spine as standing up.
- If driving (as we are all different shapes and sizes), make sure you adjust car seats, head rests and steering wheels to meet your individual requirements. This will not only improve your comfort in the car but also your safety.
- When dirving long distances, make sure you stop regularly and go for a walk. aim for a break every 30-40 minutes.

Public Transport
- If you mainly stand on your commute, make sure you wear comfortable shoes and loose clothing. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and hold onto a rail comfortably, don't over stretch.
- If you do get a seat, relax when sitting into your chair, making sure you have your bottom against the seat back and your shoulder blades are touching the back rest of the chair. Avoid stiffness by doing shoulder shrugs, buttock clenches and foot circles.
- If using a laptop, don't sit in the same position for long periods, as you are looking down onto the screen with your head unsupported. Rest the laptop on a table, not on your lap, arms should be flat and your elbows level with the desk or table you are using.

Don't forget........Muscles and joints are designed for movement so, where possible, walk as it will help improve muscle tone, improve circulation and posture. Walking also works to reduce the appetite so is very good for all those looking to get fit and lose weight.

If you are suffering with niggling pains or would like a check, contact Dr. Laura Young M(Chiro) on 07591 424338 or by e-mail, enquiries@youngsspinalhealth.co.uk
Can Chiropractic help With Headaches?

Chiropractic is a low risk, hands on approach for dealing with a variety of disorders. Some of which you may not automatically think about, and headaches are one of them. As with all medical conditions, there are many classifications, in fact there are 150 diagnostic classifications for headaches. Chiropractic is not suitable for all but it is suitable for some of the more common varieties, including migraines and cervicogenic headaches (headaches resulting from neck pain).

Both of which are highly prevalent, recent research shows between 22-25% of adults suffer from cervicogenic headaches, with women being four times as likely. And migraines stand at around a 5-12% of the overall population.

Cervicogenic headaches can arise from relatively common irritants including, poor posture, whiplash, uncomfortable sleeping arrangements or repetitive strain injuries. Aspects of life that most of us can associate with. It is through a series of abnormal muscle and joint movements and heightened pain sensitive nerve signals within neck pain that develop into a headache. In a nutshell, the brain gets confused as to the location of the pain and it presents in the head, often as a one sided head pain around the eye.

A cervicogenic headache can also act as a preceding factor for migraines and can lead to an increase in the frequency, duration and severity of pain during a migraine attack. Once a migraine has started, many patients state there is little that improves the symptoms indicating prevention is better than reactive treatment in such instances.

Chiropractors are ideally placed to treat cervicogenic headaches as we are concerned with improving the function of joints and their supportive tissues. When your chiropractor is treating you for migraines he or she is looking to affect 2 of the 3 main aspects. (Frequency, Duration and severity of pain.) We often find this dramatically reduces patients discomfort and improves quality of life.

The British Chiropractic Associate suggests that manual therapy is a low risk intervention that may offer relief to those who do not wish to take medication.

So, if you or someone you know is suffering, then contact Young's Spinal Health. With our mobile operation we will arrange an appointment you at your convenience. Take control of your health today and make some positive changes.

Dr. Laura Young M(Chiro) Tel: 07591 424338 E-mail: enquiries@youngsspinalhealth.co.uk
Arthritis care

Arthritis is a broad term, basically meaning joint pain. As a result it is a common complaint presented to chiropractors. Many people don't realize that there are over 200 different types of arthritis affecting any age group and any joint in the body. The most predominant that I personally see is osteoarthritis also known as wear and tear or degeneration. During treatment I often find simple advice regarding things like diet and exercise, as detailed in this article, can have a profound effect on my patients' quality of life. 

Diet
  • There have been no definitive links between given food groups and inflammatory flare ups, although certain foods are known to reduce pain and inflammation, including; apples, berries, cherries and citric foods. 
  • Certain types of arthritis such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, long term steroid intake and/or inactivity can lead to bone density issues so it's important to get Calcium and vitamin D from dairy products and leafy greens like spinach, kale and broccoli. 
  • Essential fatty acids (EFAs) can help some people with arthritis. Including; Omega 3 and Omega 6, usually found in oily fish, nuts, meat and cheese. (Beware, Omega 6 may be linked to an increase in inflammation). 
  • Popular supplements include glucosamine chondroitin, Aloe Vera and Evening Primrose Oil. Always check with your health care provider if on medication before taking these. 
  • Control your weight; less weight means less pressure on aching joints. 

Exercise
  • Combat morning stiffness by taking time to mobilise joints. Draw circles with your neck, shoulders, wrists, pelvis and ankles. You can also try lying on your back and bringing your knee to your chest. This is a gentle way to improve motion. 
  • Fitness in the pool is another way to gently improve function. If you don't like swimming there are many Aquafit and Aqua Zumba classes. 
  • Strength training - you don't have to be lifting heavy weights, resistive bands will often suffice. 
  • Remember that with inactivity comes osteoporosis, so use it or lose it! 

My patients who suffer with Osteoarthritis or cervical spondylosis often report increased mobility and less pain when undergoing chiropractic treatment. Those who adopt the lifestyle changes relating to diet and exercise understand it is a way of life and not a one off stretch or supplement.

Take control of your health today and make some positive changes.

To book an appointment please call Dr. Laura Young M(Chiro) on 07591 424338 or email on enquiries@youngsspinalhealth.co.uk
Chiropractic care and your child

At any park where children are playing, it seems there's always one who falls over or has a collision with a nearby object. Children have lots of bumps and scrapes as they grow and develop, just as adults have their fair share too! Chiropractor Laura Young, has seen how chiropractic can help children grow and develop by maintaining the function of the developing body, allowing kids to cope with the odd bump and fall.

“Treatment for children is always very gentle – they need very little to keep their spines healthy, and most of the time they have no problems at all. If you think of all the bending and twisting they go through at birth, those little spines can cope with a lot! However I would recommend any parent bring their child in for a chiropractic check-up, just like the dentist.”

And parents should not neglect their spines too – all that bending and lifting takes its toll. “The adult spine is less flexible than a child's, and repetitive actions like carrying a child on one hip or bending down to play can lead to restrictions in the spine and surrounding muscles,” says Laura.

Call today for a family check on 07591 424338
Say No to Couch Potato

Many forecasters are predicting a harsh winter this year, so it will be extremely tempting to stay in the warm and relax in front of the television. However, with 36% of Brits saying that their back pain is triggered by sitting still for long periods of time, Young's Spinal Health offers the following advice on how “couch potatoes” can keep their backs healthy:-

• The ‘squishier' the sofa the worse it is for your back, ideally you would benefit from a firm sofa where the hips are positioned higher than the knees. This position reduces the pressure on the low back, which in turn reduces the risk of back pain.

If you don't have a firm sofa:-

• It is a good idea to have a range of chairs in the living room rather than always choosing to sit on the sofa.

• Vary your seating position – you should alternate sitting on the sofa to sitting on the floor with your back rested firmly against the base of the sofa to keep your posture upright.

• Lie down rather than sitting for long periods of time. You can also place a pillow between your legs to open the pelvic joints.

Regardless of the type of sofa, follow these measures:-

• It is important to ensure you get up at regular intervals (at least every 20 minutes) to change position and walk around the house to stretch your muscles.

• Allow yourself to move while you are still seated and not stay completely stationary, for example, roll your shoulders forward and backwards to loosen your muscles.

The British Chiropractic Association has launched Straighten Up UK, a three minute exercise programme for all ages, designed to help strengthen the spine and improve posture. Easy to learn and do, the sequence of exercises consists of precise, slow stretches, each with a specific purpose. This exercise can be carried out during television advertising breaks and is most effective when performed daily. To see a video of these exercises please follow this link, http://www.chiropractic-uk.co.uk/For-You-5-Straighten-Up-UK-0-ms.aspx.

If you are developing low back pain, don't let it affect your Christmas. Contact Young's Spinal Health today on 07951 424338 or e-mail us on enquiries@youngsspinallhealth.co.uk........
Sleep Advice

It doesn't matter who you are or where you're from, we all need to sleep and as a result we spend a third of our lives asleep.

Due to our diverse nature of size, shape and weight, there is an abundance of beds aimed at helping you get the most comfortable night sleep, but how do you choose what is right for you?

Dr. Laura Young has found a surprisingly common cause of back and neck pain is ‘I just woke up with it', and research by the British Chiropractic Association found that 41% of women and 36% of men reported pain brought on by sleep.

By choosing the right bed for you can minimise risk factors that lead to, or aggravate back pain. This months news letter focuses on advice aimed to help you choose a bed.

Which is better, a hard or soft mattress?
The best mattress is a 'supportive one‘. A 16 stone person sleeping on a mattress may not get the same support as a 10 stone person sleeping on the same mattress.

How do I know which is the right mattress for me?
If you are lying on your side, your spine should be parallel to the mattress and should not sag (bed too soft) or bow (bed too hard). The longer you can spend lying on a mattress before you buy it, the more accurate this feeling will be.
Your pillow should be an extension of this i.e. your neck should be a continuation of the straight spine and not too high or too low.

What about my partner?
Always shop with your partner as your respective ideal mattress tensions could be very different. If this is the case, buy beds from a range that allow two single mattresses to be zipped together, so that you both get the support you need.

How do I know if my current bed/mattress needs replacing?
• Are you and your partner getting comfortable nights sleep?
If the answer is no, your bed may be the problem.
• Can you feel the springs through the mattress?
If the answer is yes, it is definitely time to buy a new one.
• Is the bed more than 10 years old?
If the answer is yes, consider purchasing a new one – beds wear out and may sag or lose support with time.

What things can I do to help prevent back problems even with my new mattress?
• Try and adopt a sleeping position which creates less physical stress on the back. For example, lying on your side is better than lying on your front with your neck twisted to one side.
• Keep moving and avoid being in any one position for too long. No matter how comfy the position may initially feel, the longer you stay in one position the more this will ‘load joints'. If your partner moves around a lot at night, try separate beds for a while as your partner's movement could aggravate your back condition!
• Drink water. Keep well hydrated; dehydration can make muscles ache.
• Don't leap out of bed first thing in the morning. After you have woken up wake up, try some gentle stretches.
• Wake up your body. Once up, avoid bending or doing anything sudden or strenuous until you back wakes up!

If you would like to speak with Dr. Laura Young regarding aches and pains associated with sleep or otherwise, please cal 07951 424338 today.
On Your Marks

As Great Britain gets to grips with ‘Olympic fever', we all look to get involved. Many of us will lend support by watching the games on television, or even from one of the many stadiums across the country. Some may be inspired to take up a new sport or ‘up their game' in existing activities. For the nation as a whole, this can only mean good things!!! It makes for a happy, healthy society. And to keep this up and ensure it doesn't lead to avoidable sporting injuries, I thought it best practice to go over the basics: -


Warm up – Before you start your work out always warm up. Start with circling your joints and gradually build to a low impact, low intensity, activity such as a jog or a slow stroke swim.


Keep hydrated – Make sure you dink enough water! Remember, we lose 3 litres of water per day through breathing, sweat, urine and excretion. Most is lost through breathing and sweating alone, so it only makes sense that this will increase with exercise.


Stretch- Ensure you stretch at the end of a workout to keep your muscles and ligaments supple and less prone to damage. Hold each stretch for around 10 seconds and remember DO NOT BOB!


Ask professional advice – If you are in the gym and using new equipment and are unsure of technique, it is always best to seek advice from the professional trainers.


It is important to note that 48% of the population is suffering with low back pain.* Exercise can greatly improve suffering and also helps to improve if not prevent most avoidable back problems.


When you get involved, don't forget these simple points.


If you are concerned about back pain, whether it is exercise related or not, it is advisable to ask advice from a chiropractor. You can contact Dr. Laura Young MSc (Chiro) on 07591 424338 or e-mail directly to enquiries@youngsspinalhealth.co.uk.



*British Chiropractic Association, February 2012

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Scottish Chiropractic Association
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Youngs Spinal Health is registered with the General Chiropractic Council