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Do you have neck pain? Here’s a simple neck core exercise to the rescue!
Neck pain is quite common, especially with postural strain due to prolonged computer use, “text-neck“, injury or trauma to the neck etc. The postural strain sets us up for a weaker neck core. You’ve seen this rounded shoulders “slumped posture”. This posture involves tight pectoral muscles, tight suboccipitals (muscles at the base of the skull), upper traps and levators, stretched weak lower-trapezium/rhomboids, and right in the middle, a weak neck core.
Why is this bad? Well, this isn’t your ideal posture because your head and vertebrae shift forward and this imbalance places greater stress on your spine, ligaments, tendons, and muscles, predisposing you to pain and degenerative changes (arthritis).
How can chin tucks help?
Chin tucks are a way to re-activate the deep neck core flexors (longus capitis/colli muscles) that support your spine. When the neck core has endurance, it lasts longer to support the structures that help support your head, creating less muscle strain of the more superficial muscles like the upper traps.
Like with any exercise, there are progressions. You need to start out with the basics and then increase the level of difficulty/resistance. In this blog, we will start with a basic chin tuck. If you experience pain while attempting this, please email Dr. Maria Davidovic to arrange your initial chiropractic visit or follow-up to ensure you aren’t re-aggravating any underlying issue.
Chin tucks: Pull your head straight back keepings eyes and jaw leveled and hold for 5 seconds, then release. Do 10-15 repetitions slowly and you can do 2-3 sets per day.
If you would like to learn more about how to improve your posture, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 416-906-0767 to arrange an appointment with Dr. Maria.
Why “less is more” doesn’t work at first with chiropractic treatment
Have you ever had a terrible headache?
One of those bad headaches for a few hours where you feel drained and just want it to end already? What typically happens next is you lie down hoping it will end soon or you take a fast acting over the counter pain pill so you can enjoy your day. Shortly after, poof! The headache is gone and you feel a great sense of relief. You go to bed and wake up to be sadly surprised by yet another annoying headache. You start to wonder, was it the way I slept? Is it coming from my neck? It could be one of those, both or neither!
So what is the cause?
Commonly, there is postural strain going on like “text neck” or computer strain and the spinal joints/muscles get irritated. Having a chiropractic assessment will help to determine the root cause. That pain pill may have worked for short term relief, but it didn’t get to the root cause of your headache. Similarly, having a single chiropractic visit may provide great short-term relief, but a few treatments help to tackle the root cause of pain and will help decrease the frequency of reoccurring pain. The tension that’s in your neck and shoulders built up over time and takes time to decrease also. This is why having a few frequent treatments at first, often works better to decrease that pesky “muscle memory” and address the areas that need stretching/strengthening. Similarly, with migraines, some people have certain triggers like bright lights, chocolate, alcohol or stress. If stress management is done regularly (not just one yoga/meditative class, but a regular routine that works for you) it often produces better long-term results. Maybe it’s having regular “tune –up” treatments to offset joint pain and muscle tension, going to bed early or avoiding certain triggers like decreasing the brightness setting on your phone. I am here to help guide you on ways to decrease pain not just on a short-term basis, but on a long term basis with the use of self-directed stretches/exercises and chiropractic treatment plans that will help keep your spine aligned.
If you would like to arrange a chiropractic appointment, please email email@example.com or call 416-906-0767
“Text-neck” concerns? A modern spine condition affecting growing children, teens, and adults
What is text-neck?
It’s neck pain associated with looking down at your cell phone or other wireless device for too long and too frequently. This posture of bending your neck to look down over the cell phone isn’t a new position. We have been hunching over for years with reading also. The main issue is that we look down for longer periods of time and more frequently in this day and age. What’s most concerning is that this posture is especially common in children! This could be setting them up for lifelong neck related damage and pain.
What are common symptoms of text-neck?
Neck pain, tightness, soreness, muscle spasms, and pain in the shoulders. If a cervical nerve becomes pinched, it can also lead to nerve pain that travels down your arm into your hand (neurological symptoms for cervical radiculopathy.) Text neck may also bring upon early onset of arthritis. So what can we do to help decrease these above painful neck conditions?
Take frequent breaks every 20-30mins.
Make sure you set up your computer so it’s at eye level at the desk so you’re not looking down excessively.
Try to hold your phone up higher to avoid looking down for too long.
Stretch your neck side to side, roll your shoulders back and down (opposite of being hunched over).
You should strengthen the core muscles of your neck and shoulder blade area (scapular stabilizers). These areas are crucial to build endurance in so that you don’t slump forward as much and predispose yourself to other injuries secondary to poor posture.
To learn how to offset the harmful effects of “text-neck”, book your chiropractic appointment now at firstname.lastname@example.org or 416-906-0767 with Dr. Maria Davidovic.