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Athletes

Sports Spine Specialist Chiropractic Team: Athletes strive to achieve their body’s maximum performance by participating in numerous training regimens consisting of strenuous exercises and physical activity and ensuring they meet all of their body’s nutritional requirements. Through proper fitness and nutrition, many individuals can condition themselves to excel in their specific sport. Our training programs are designed for athletes that look to gain a competitive edge in their sport.

We provide sport-specific services to help increase an athlete’s performance through mobility, strength, and endurance. Occasionally, however, the excess workouts can lead many to suffer injuries or develop underlying conditions. Dr. Alex Jimenez’s chronicle of articles for athletes displays in detail the many forms of complications affecting these professionals while focusing on the possible solutions and treatments to follow to achieve overall well-being.


Summer Heat Can Affect Joints and Movement

Summer Heat Can Affect Joints and Movement

Although it is not officially summer, the past few weeks sure feels like it. Especially for those with joint discomfort and pain. As the body ages, individuals may notice their joints have some mobility/flexibility issues in the summer heat. Again, the heat and humidity are the culprits. The hotter it is, the more the body is susceptible to inflammation and swelling. The more prone an individual’s body is to swelling, the more pain can present. Barometric pressure can also have some form of impact on joint health. The pressure changes can cause the joints to become more sensitive. When the pressure changes, individuals often speak of their joints feeling tighter combined with stiffness, leading to a cycle of swelling and pain.

Summer Heat Can Affect Joints and Movement

Joint Anatomy

Whether it’s the hip, knee, elbow, or hand, all of the body’s joints have fluid in them. It is a gel-like substance known as synovial fluid. This is what lubricates the joints and keeps them functioning smoothly. However, the temperature and humidity levels can change the thickness of the fluid in the joints. This means that the synovial fluid can become inflamed with the weather changes. This is a symptom when the joints begin to feel like they cannot move and/or are becoming stiff. Joint inflammation can become more common and chronic as the body gets older.

Weather and the joints

The summer heat and humidity can affect the joint because:

  • The tendons, ligaments, and muscles expand in this type of weather
  • The heat can restrict individuals from moving around. Non-use stiffens the joints
  • Joints that have worn down cartilage could have exposed nerves that are reacting to the temperature changes
  • Humidity causes the body to lose water by sweating. This can reduce the fluid around the joints leading to stiffness, immobility, and pain.

 

However, not everyone has joint problems in the summer heat. Many have joint issues when it’s cold, damp, or raining. Other’s are at their best in cool, dry weather. It depends on an individual’s body and how their joints react when the temperature changes.

Maintaining joint health for the summer heat

When joint discomfort or pain presents in the summer, there are a few easy ways to gain relief.

Properly Hydrate the Body

Water and sports drinks maintain the fluid levels in the body, specifically, it keeps the joints moving. One way to hydrate the body can be achieved by eating healthy fruits and vegetables. Water-rich fruits and vegetables include:

  • Watermelon
  • Oranges
  • Strawberries
  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Spinach
  • Celery

Over-The-Counter pain ointments and creams

Arthritis and anti-inflammatory creams/ointments can ease joint pain by allowing more blood circulation in the affected areas.

Dressing for the heat

Wear loose, natural fiber, breathable clothing that allows the body to move freely while maintaining a cool temperature.

Relax in the air conditioning

Get into the air conditioning. The cool air can help reduce joint inflammation.

Get in the Water

Swimming or just wading through doing some light exercise in the water cools the body’s core. In addition, the buoyancy of the water relieves pressure on the joints.


Body Composition Testing


Body Water

The body is made up of as much as 2/3’s water. Even though much of the body is made up of water, the percentage of body composition changes based on functional needs. Essential functions of water include:

  • Water is the building block to almost every cell in the body
  • It regulates the body’s temperature through sweating and respiration
  • Carbohydrates and proteins for energy are transported via the water in the blood
  • Water assists in the removal of metabolic waste through urination
  • It is part of the shock-absorbing system that protects the brain and spinal cord
  • Water is part of the saliva and fluid that lubricates the joints

The amount of water in the body depends on various factors. This includes:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Physical activity
  • It is referred to as Total Body Water or TBW.

TBW is constantly changing with gains and losses of fluid in healthy adults. The body can detect irregularities and compensate for losses and/or gains to make sure that the systems are balanced.

General Disclaimer *

The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified healthcare professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. In addition, we provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

Licensed in: Texas & New Mexico*

References

Morton, Darren, and Robin Callister. “Exercise-related transient abdominal pain (ETAP).” Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.) vol. 45,1 (2015): 23-35. doi:10.1007/s40279-014-0245-z

Peeler, Jason et al. “Managing Knee Osteoarthritis: The Effects of Body Weight Supported Physical Activity on Joint Pain, Function, and Thigh Muscle Strength.” Clinical journal of sports medicine: official journal of the Canadian Academy of Sports Medicine vol. 25,6 (2015): 518-23. doi:10.1097/JSM.0000000000000173

Quick, D C. “Joint pain and weather. A critical review of the literature.” Minnesota medicine vol. 80,3 (1997): 25-9.

Timmermans, Erik J et al. “The Influence of Weather Conditions on Joint Pain in Older People with Osteoarthritis: Results from the European Project on OSteoArthritis.” The Journal of rheumatology vol. 42,10 (2015): 1885-92. doi:10.3899/jrheum.141594

The Difference Between Muscle Mass and Lean Body Mass

The Difference Between Muscle Mass and Lean Body Mass

There are different types of muscle from a biological perspective, however, there is no such thing as lean muscle. Lean suggests the absence of body fat. But the fact is that all muscle is lean muscle. It is important to build muscle mass as the body ages, however, it is more important to build lean body mass. Here is the difference.

Lean Body Mass

Lean Body Mass is the total weight of an individual’s body minus all the weight from the fat mass.

Lean Body Mass (LBM) = Total Weight – Fat Mass

Lean Body Mass includes the weight of the:

  • Skin
  • Body Water
  • Bones
  • Organs
  • Muscle Mass

Because Lean Body Mass consists of various components, any change in the weight of these areas is recorded as changes in lean body mass. However, the weight of the body’s organs will not change. Bone density does decrease with time and age, but will not significantly affect the weight of lean body mass. With lean body mass, 2 areas of focus include:

  • Body water
  • Muscle mass

Lean Muscle

Sometimes, individuals use the term lean muscle referring to the shape of the muscles. However, both types of muscle are lean and fat-free.

The difference between muscle mass and lean muscle

  • The strict definition of muscle mass is the weight of the muscles of the body. When individuals say they are gaining muscle mass, they typically mean that the muscles look and feel bigger.
  • Lean muscle mass on the other hand is a term often used when someone is referring to the weight of the muscles, not factoring in the amount of fat that could be present within a muscle.

Combining Lean Gains

Increases in Skeletal Muscle Mass are also an increase in Lean Body Mass. What tends to happen is individuals combine them as lean mass gains or lean gains. However, an increase in Lean Body Mass does not always increase muscle.

The Difference Between Muscle Mass and Lean Body Mass

This is because body water makes up a significant portion of an individual’s Lean Body Mass. For example, a body composition analysis of a 174-pound male.

The Difference Between Muscle Mass and Lean Body Mass

98.1 Total Body Water + 35.5 Dry Lean Mass = 133.6 Lean Body Mass

  • Water makes up more than 55% of total body weight
  • This is normal for healthy adult males
  • Lean Body Mass consists of three components, two of which are water.
  • Everything else grouped together makes up the individual’s Dry Lean Mass.
  • This includes bone minerals, protein content, etc.

Muscle gains contribute to Lean Body Mass gains, but so does water. The difference is that water levels can fluctuate throughout the day depending on:

  • Hydration levels
  • Diet
  • Physical activity

The muscle tissue itself contains a significant amount of water. Muscle tissue is comprised of up to 79% water. Research has shown that resistance training increases intracellular water in both men and women. This creates an issue when looking at lean gains.

  • Lean Mass gains can happen quickly, and the increases are mostly body water

Measuring Lean Body Mass and Muscle Mass

What not to do

Don’t try to use a scale to calculate changes in Skeletal Muscle Mass. A popular method used is to estimate muscle gain from the number on the scale and applying fitness websites/magazine tips. The problem with this technique is that estimating progress has many factors that can influence an increase in body weight. These include:

  • Undigested food or drink
  • Water retention/glycogen
  • Water retention/sodium

Most methods of body composition analysis divide the body into Lean Body Mass or Fat-Free Mass/Fat Mass. These include:

Each has its pros and cons with a difference in accuracy, depending on the technique used.

Using A Lean Body Mass Calculator

A lean body mass calculator computes various factors that include:

  • Height
  • Weight
  • Gender
  • Age

It is the difference between total body weight and body fat weight. However, these calculations are more for helping physicians determine the appropriate amount of prescription medication/s or if an individual will be undergoing anesthesia and not a computation of overall body composition.

Paying Attention to Weight Loss

  • Paying attention to weight loss is an inaccurate reflection of lean body mass, muscle mass, or lean mass.
  • Weight loss, or gain, does not reflect overall health and body composition.

Body Fat Percentage

Body fat percentage is different, as far as, the healthy range for men and women. This can provide insights into the overall health of a person.

Key Points

  • All muscle is lean muscle
  • Muscle Mass aka Skeletal Muscle Mass
  • Resistance training/weightlifting workouts combined with added protein will generate a muscle mass percentage increase
  • Skeletal Muscle Mass is connected with Lean Body Mass
  • Everyone’s body composition is different, making the proportion of an individual’s skeletal muscle mass to Lean Body Mass unique.
  • Lean Mass or Lean body mass is the safest term to use to describe gains.

Which Is More Important?

  • When it comes to tracking muscle gain or fat loss, it all comes down to what tools are being used to measure progress.
  • If working with just a weight scale, an individual will only know their weight increases or decreases.
  • This is difficult to see the difference in weight gain from water, muscle, or body fat.
  • For individuals that want accurate measuring of their muscle gain and assessing their health, then body composition analysis is the key.

Body Composition Difference


Disclaimer

The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the musculoskeletal system’s injuries or disorders. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, CTG*
email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com
phone: 915-850-0900
Licensed in Texas & New Mexico

References

Galán-Rioja, Miguel Ángel et al. “Effects of Body Weight vs. Lean Body Mass on Wingate Anaerobic Test Performance in Endurance Athletes.” International journal of sports medicine vol. 41,8 (2020): 545-551. doi:10.1055/a-1114-6206

Köstek, Osman et al. “Changes in skeletal muscle area and lean body mass during pazopanib vs sunitinib therapy for metastatic renal cancer.” Cancer chemotherapy and pharmacology vol. 83,4 (2019): 735-742. doi:10.1007/s00280-019-03779-5

Ribeiro, Alex S et al. “Resistance training promotes an increase in intracellular hydration in men and women.” European journal of sports science vol. 14,6 (2014): 578-85. doi:10.1080/17461391.2014.880192

Ten Haaf, Dominique S M et al. “Protein supplementation improves lean body mass in physically active older adults: a randomized placebo-controlled trial.” Journal of cachexia, sarcopenia and muscle vol. 10,2 (2019): 298-310. doi:10.1002/jcsm.12394

Herniated Disc Pain Stretches and Exercises

Herniated Disc Pain Stretches and Exercises

Here are a few recommended stretches and exercises for relieving herniated disc symptoms. The vertebrae are the small bones that make up the spine. They have cushion discs between each one. These are the intervertebral discs and are the body’s shock absorbers. The discs can be thought of as small balloons that are filled with an elastic gel-type material. There are twenty-three of these cushions.

Functioning as the body’s shock absorbers transferring various forces, weight, and stress from vertebra to vertebra, so that no one is overburdened taking on all the impact the body goes through. But like any machine, the discs can wear down over time, and sustain injury. When this happens the cushioning gel can leak out and press on the nerve roots emerging from the spine. This type of injury is a herniated disc.11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 El Paso, TX. Herniated Disc Pain Stretches and Exercises

Herniated Disc Treatment

A herniated disc can lose its height because of fluid and water loss.

This loss affects the bone structures bringing them closer together affecting the ligaments that connect each segment. The ligaments become loose and do not provide the same stability. Ligaments cannot be strengthened with exercise making it more important to strengthen the muscles around the spine to make up for this stability loss. Depending on the severity of the injury, the displaced disc can cause pressure to build upon the nerves, resulting in pain and other discomforts. This comes from the loss of the disc’s cushion causing the vertebrae to rub against each other. Stretches and exercises designed for herniated discs can work in conjunction with conservative treatment to relieve the pain and discomfort.

Stretches and Exercises for Pain Relief

Consult a medical spine specialist/chiropractor before beginning a stretch and exercise regimen. This is because the herniation can become worse or additional injury/s can occur without proper instruction. Once the injury and clinical considerations have been addressed, gentle stretches and exercises can help reduce the pain and other symptoms. Strengthening the back and hamstring muscles reduces pressure on the spinal column helping to prevent pain and promotes healing by:

  • Increasing blood flow to the spine
  • Building strength to support the spinal muscles
  • Decreases stress on the spine
  • Helps relieve the pain
  • Improves abnormal postures and awkward body positions

Equipment is not necessary but there are few items that can help the process.

  • Yoga mat for hard floors
  • A resistance band, a towel will work
  • Yoga blocks
  • Stable upright chair
  • Stopwatch/Timer a phone timer will work

Cervical/Neck Stretches and Exercises

A herniated disc in the neck is usually caused by a forward head posture and a swayback or excessive curvature of the spine.

Isometric hold

  • Sit straight
  • Relax the shoulders
  • Place one hand on the forehead
  • Push head into the hand without moving the head
  • Hold for 5 to 15 seconds.
  • Repeat 15 times

Chin tuck

  • Lie on your back on a flat surface
  • Place arms at sides
  • Tuck the chin in and down toward the chest until a stretch is felt
  • Hold for 5 to 10 seconds
  • Repeat 15 to 20 times

Lumbar/Low Back Stretches and Exercises

Back flexion stretch

This stretch extends the back muscles to relieve low back pain.

  • Lie flat on your back
  • Pull the knees toward the chest and wrap your arms around the knees
  • Lift head straight up off the floor until there is a stretch across the mid and low back
  • Hold for 10 seconds
  • Repeat 5 to 10 times

Piriformis stretch

This stretches the small muscle in the buttocks helping to relieve low back pain and helps with sciatica.

  • Lie flat on your back on the floor or yoga mat
  • Bend the knees
  • Plant feet on the floor
  • Pick up one leg and rest the ankle on the other leg’s bent knee
  • Reach one arm through the leg and use both hands to grasp the bent leg
  • Pull the leg toward the chest until there is a stretch in the buttock
  • Hold for 30 seconds
  • Repeat on the other leg

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 El Paso, TX. Herniated Disc Pain Stretches and Exercises

Prone extension stretch

This stretch helps reposition the disc back to its proper position, expediting the healing process. Start slowly and if pain presents, stop immediately.

  • Lie face down on the floor or yoga mat
  • Place the forearms on the floor next to the body
  • The elbows should be at a 45- degree angle
  • Slowly prop the body up, being sure to keep the hips on the floor
  • Keep pressing upward until the elbows are at a 90-degree angle
  • Hold the position for 10-15 seconds
  • Return to  starting position
  • Repeat the stretch 10 times
  • Gradually increase the upward position hold time until it can be maintained for 30 seconds

 

Performing these stretches and exercises or similar types will help with herniated injury recovery and prevent worsening or creating new injuries.


Body Composition


Benefits of yoga

Yoga benefits mental and physical health. Yoga helps improve individual physical health. Specific poses can help:

  • Improve balance
  • Flexibility
  • Build/Tone muscle
  • Prevent injury
  • Improve sense of well-being

Yoga stretches the muscles while relieving physical and emotional stress. Practicing yoga regularly can prevent obesity, and reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. Yoga can help decrease leptin which is a hormone that helps control appetite. This is important for individuals going through chronic stress who are twice as likely to develop metabolic syndrome.

Disclaimer

The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the musculoskeletal system’s injuries or disorders. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, CTG*
email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com
phone: 915-850-0900
Licensed in Texas & New Mexico

References

Court C, Mansour E, Bouthors C. Thoracic disc herniation: Surgical treatment, Orthopaedics & Traumatology: Surgery & Research, 104(1)S31-@40, 2018, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1877056817303419.

Cardio Exercise Equipment That Won’t Worsen Back Pain

Cardio Exercise Equipment That Won’t Worsen Back Pain

At home or a gym, working out with cardio exercise equipment can be a highly beneficial treatment for back discomfort, soreness, and pain. However, when checking out all the cardio machines it is recommended to use those that will help with back pain and not worsen or cause further injury. The same goes for purchasing cardio equipment to use at home. Research has found that exercise training could be highly effective in the treatment of back pain. A study on pain found that the endorphins generated from aerobic exercise help to lessen low back pain. The North American Spine Society announced evidence-based recommendations for the treatment of back pain, and one of the top recommendations was aerobic exercise. Individuals can always go outside to:

  • Walk
  • Hike
  • Run
  • Bike ride

But mixing it up with cardio equipment can have its own benefits for different reasons. It could be too hot, raining, sometimes individuals prefer a set workout program to reach calorie or distance goals, and it could be easier on the spine. Working out at home or at a gym, cardiovascular machines can help bring relief for back pain.11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Cardio Exercise Equipment That Won't Cause Back Pain

Cardiovascular Exercise Back Pain Treatment

Cardiovascular exercise is highly recommended for everyone. For individuals dealing with back pain, exercise combined with conservative therapy is usually part of a treatment plan. This  includes:

  • Physical therapy
  • Chiropractic care
  • Health coaching
  • Diet
  • Aerobic exercise regimen

With an exercise program, experts recommend starting with moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. Moderate intensity workouts are meant to get an individual’s heart and blood pumping, sweating a little, and slightly deep breathing. These types of exercise include:

  • Power walking outside
  • Power walking on a treadmill
  • Stationary biking

As long as the physical activity gets the heart rate up, these exercises have been shown to decrease back pain, relieve stress, and elevate mood. 20 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise three to five times a week for six weeks is what is recommended. This will help the back become healthier, feel better, and is recommended by the American Heart Association.

Exercise Not For All Spine Conditions

However, not all spinal conditions benefit from regular exercising. Getting an evaluation from a doctor, spine specialist, or chiropractor is recommended for injuries, severe and/or persistent back pain before starting a cardiovascular exercise program. This could be a spinal fracture, or spinal condition that requires bracing, or intense physical therapy/rehabilitation. Individuals that do not exercise regularly or have a medical or heart condition/s definitely need to get a doctor’s clearance before beginning a cardiovascular workout regimen.

Top Cardiovascular Exercises and Equipment

Once a doctor clears the individual for aerobic exercise there is no cardio equipment that is off-limits. Elliptical machines and stationary bikes are the most well-tolerated by individuals with back problems/conditions. Because they are low impact. However, if it is tolerable using a jogging treadmill is beneficial as well. Listen to the body. If a workout on a treadmill causes back pain that is not just workout soreness,  stop with that machine and try different cardiovascular equipment that is more low impact. Do not ignore back pain. If pain is continuous and exercising is not helping, stop and see a doctor, or chiropractor to evaluate and analyze the situation. Then they can adjust the exercise part of the treatment plan according to the presenting symptoms.


Body Composition


Concurrent Training

Concurrent training is the combination of aerobic and resistance exercises during the same workout session. Aerobic and resistance exercise impacts the body in different ways. The type of aerobic training determines how it interacts with resistance exercise. The order of the types of exercises like aerobic and resistance workouts can make a difference. Having an understanding of a few specifics about concurrent training will help to make decisions about an exercise program.

  • Aerobic/interval and resistance training does not seem to interfere with the others’ adaptations
  • However, gaining strength could be lowered by adding running to a resistance program
  • Whereas bicycling does not have the same effect.

Cycling and the ergonomics that go with it are similar to traditional lower-body resistance exercises. The muscle contractions that come with running result in muscle damage, while the contractions in cycling also cause muscle damage, it is not to the same extent. Pairing the exercise programs correctly is key, such as a running program in combination with an upper-body lifting exercise can be beneficial. While running and doing leg presses every day could interfere with each other and could cause injuries. Or if doing both aerobic and resistance exercises in the same session, or on the same day, consider the order of the exercises, depending on what the goal is.

Disclaimer

The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the musculoskeletal system’s injuries or disorders. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, CTG*
email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com
phone: 915-850-0900
Licensed in Texas & New Mexico

References

British Journal of Sports Medicine. (November 2020) “Which specific modes of exercise training are most effective for treating low back pain? Network meta-analysis” https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/54/21/1279

Pain. (December 2020) “Are endogenous opioid mechanisms involved in the effects of aerobic exercise training on chronic low back pain? A randomized controlled trial” https://journals.lww.com/pain/Citation/2020/12000/Are_endogenous_opioid_mechanisms_involved_in_the.23.aspx

North American Spine Society. (2020) “Evidence-Based Clinical Guidelines for Multidisciplinary Spine Care” https://www.spine.org/Portals/0/assets/downloads/ResearchClinicalCare/Guidelines/LowBackPain.pdf

Weight Loss Strategies That Are Evidence-Based

Weight Loss Strategies That Are Evidence-Based

The human body is a complex system, that requires consistent development in all areas. When it comes to weight loss being too strict can cause the body to rebel. Examples are individuals that have lost weight, then put it right back on, or get stuck in a plateau. The objective is to step off the weight loss rollercoaster and embrace weight-loss strategies that work. Here, we explore a few evidence-based weight loss strategies that focus on long-lasting success.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Weight Loss Strategies That Are Evidence-Based
 

Improve insulin sensitivity

When consuming carbohydrates, it is broken down into sugar. The body needs a certain amount of sugar to function. However, it is a narrow safety range. If the level gets too high for too long, cellular damage happens. The role of insulin is to guide the excess sugar/glucose into the cells. However, more individuals are experiencing high blood insulin levels, called hyperinsulinemia. Possible symptoms can include:
  • Sugar cravings
  • Unusual weight gain
  • Frequent hunger
  • Excessive hunger
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Anxiety or feelings of panic
  • Lack of focus
  • Extreme fatigue
Insulin rises because the blood sugar does. It�s dangerous to let glucose levels stay elevated, which is why more insulin gets produced to bring the blood sugar down. Given enough time constant hyperinsulinemia can result in a condition called insulin resistance, where the cells become resistant to the effects of insulin and are less effective.  
 

Insulin sensitivity and weight loss

A high level of insulin in the blood can trigger weight gain and make losing it difficult. Results of high insulin:
  • Disrupts the breakdown of fat known as lipolysis
  • Raises the potential for fat storage
  • Increases the risk of regaining weight despite following a low-calorie diet

Improving insulin sensitivity can be done by:

  • Consuming whole, low glycemic foods
  • Eating healthy fats
  • Incorporating high-intensity interval training
  • Going for optimal gut health
  • Managing stress effectively

Manage stress levels

Stress and stress eating could be contributing to an expanding waistline. Examples could be eating a favorite meal while barely being conscious of the process or the inability to resist a chocolate bar after a long, distressing day. Research published in the Journal of Health Psychology found that stress-related eating has a preference for calorie-dense and highly tasty foods. And when stress levels rise, food cravings rise, triggering fat gain.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Weight Loss Strategies That Are Evidence-Based
 

Reducing stress

There are a variety of techniques that can help the mind and body relax turning off the stress response. Here are some science-based favorites:
  1. Free-range eggs
  2. Nuts
  3. Seeds
  4. Fatty fish
  5. Dark chocolate

Proper sleep cycle

Proper sleep means sound sleep eight hours each night. Many individuals have convinced themselves that five or six hours is enough. Unfortunately, research shows otherwise. In a study published in PLOS Medicine, researchers studied the effects of short sleep duration on hormones that lessen or increase hunger, and on body mass index or BMI. They found the participants with short sleep had reduced leptin and elevated ghrelin which increases appetite and can contribute to weight gain.  

Improving sleep quality

  • Developing a healthy sleep routine
  • Have the same sleep and waking time
  • Time to wind down
  • Meditate a little before sleep
  • Take a warm bath 90 minutes before bed
  • Avoid blue light at least 90 minutes before going to sleep
  • Limit caffeine intake as it can negatively affect sleep even when taken six hours before sleep
  • Avoid/limit alcohol in the evenings
  • Regular physical activity can help release stress and tension, tiring the body out so sleep comes naturally
  • 30 to 40-minute endurance sessions a week are plenty. However, for some individuals, exercising too close to bedtime can have the opposite effect. Therefore, take note of whether this would be a problem.
 

High-Intensity Interval Training

There are a variety of approaches to exercising. But there is one evidence-based approach that has been proven to:
  • Burn abdominal fat
  • Reduce waist circumference
  • Address insulin resistance

It is known as HIIT.

High-Intensity Interval Exercise involves:
  • Repeated brief sprints with all-out intensity immediately followed by low-intensity exercise or rest.
  • This type of exercise is a perfect match for:
  • Treadmill workout
  • Elliptical trainer workout
  • Skipping/jumping rope
  • Rowing workout
  • Walking workout
 

Increasing Muscle Mass

An increased amount of muscle increases the basal metabolic rate or BMR. This increases the body’s ability to burn fat and lose weight. A loss of lean body mass lowers resting energy expenditure and increases fatigue and injury risk. For individuals trying to lose weight the metabolic decline triggered by a loss of lean body mass can cause regaining the fat previously lost. What this means is that when muscle mass drops so does metabolism along with the ability to keep the weight off. When muscle mass increases the body can easily burn fat, making it possible to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. It�s important to remember that as the body’s muscle mass increases the body needs more energy to nourish and support this new tissue. This means that higher calories are allowed, as not having enough calories becomes counterproductive. Muscle mass increase can be achieved by:
  • A healthy diet will help build muscle
  • Strength and resistance training
  • Taking protein supplements
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Weight Loss Strategies That Are Evidence-Based
 

Weight loss strategies takeaway

With the right approaches, permanent weight loss is possible. Instead of deprivation, focus on science-backed approaches that work:
  • Improved insulin sensitivity
  • Stress management
  • Sound sleep
  • High-intensity interval training
  • Increasing muscle mass
  • Choose approaches that are enjoyable and fun
This will make sticking to the weight loss strategies easier and will contribute to a happy, healthy life.

Body Composition


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
References
Chao, Ariana et al. �Food cravings mediate the relationship between chronic stress and body mass index.��Journal of health psychology�vol. 20,6 (2015): 721-9. doi:10.1177/1359105315573448 Taheri, Shahrad et al. �Short sleep duration is associated with reduced leptin, elevated ghrelin, and increased body mass index.��PLoS medicine�vol. 1,3 (2004): e62. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0010062
Janus Kinase Inhibitors For Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment

Janus Kinase Inhibitors For Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment

Individuals with ankylosing spondylitis have a new treatment option that was previously used for rheumatoid arthritis. It is a medication that belongs to a class known as JAK inhibitors. Ankylosing spondylitis combines joint pain with reduced mobility. Ankylosing spondylitis is different because in severe cases, the bones in the spine can fuse together, literally reducing mobility.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Janus Kinase Inhibitors For Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment
 
The disease typically begins with pain and stiffness in the back. This is usually after some time of inactivity. Symptoms start before the age of 45 and develop gradually. There is no cure for ankylosing spondylitis but there are treatments that can improve symptoms and put the condition into remission. Ankylosing spondylitis treatment is the most successful when addressed early before irreversible damage to the joints begins.  

Janus Kinase Inhibitors

Janus kinase inhibitors have traditionally been used to treat:
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Ulcerative colitis
The medication works by decreasing the immune system�s activity. Janus kinase inhibitor drugs affect several cellular compounds that are important in the development and progression of ankylosing spondylitis. Currently, there are only three Janus kinase inhibitor medications available in the United States and FDA-approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis:
  • Xeljanz
  • Rinvoq
  • Olumiant
  • Each of the approved inhibitors targets specific enzymes
 

Current Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatments

Janus kinase inhibitors are not given to individuals right away. However, it could be an option if first and second-line treatments are not working. Treatments usually consist of:

First-Line Treatments

 

NSAIDs

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications are the most commonly used to treat ankylosing inflammation, pain, and stiffness.

Chiropractic

Chiropractic physical therapy is a major part of ankylosing spondylitis treatment keeping the spine flexible and as healthy as possible. A chiropractic/physical therapy team design and develop specific exercises to fit individual needs, which include:
  • Stretching and Range-of-motion exercises help maintain flexibility in the joints
  • Sleeping and walking posture adjustment exercises
  • Abdominal and spinal exercises to maintain a healthy posture
  • Strength training
 

Second-Line Therapies

If nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications do not relieve symptoms, then biological medications could be prescribed. This class of medications includes:

Tumor Necrosis Factor

Tumor necrosis factor blockers work by targeting cell protein that is part of the immune system, known as tumor necrosis alpha. This protein causes inflammation in the body, and the blockers suppress it.  

Interleukin 17 Inhibitors

Interleukin 17 in the body’s immune system defends against infection. It uses an inflammatory response to fight infections. The IL-17 inhibitors suppress the inflammatory response and help reduce symptoms.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Janus Kinase Inhibitors For Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment
 

Other Treatment Options

 

Lifestyle Adjustments

Following a medical treatment plan is often combined with diet and lifestyle adjustments that are recommended to help with the condition, these include:
  • Being as physically active as possible will help:
  1. Improve/maintain a healthy posture
  2. Maintain flexibility
  3. Ease pain
  • Applying heat and ice will help alleviate:
  1. Pain
  2. Stiffness
  3. Swelling

Surgery

Most individuals with ankylosing spondylitis do not require surgery. However, a doctor could recommend surgery if there is joint damage, the hip-joint needs to be replaced, or if the pain is severe.  

Inhibitor Potential

Studies are ongoing in the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis. The drug is currently in Phase 3 trials for the treatment of adults. The trial results have shown patients with active ankylosing spondylitis showed improvement in:
  • Fatigue
  • Inflammation
  • Back pain
The study enrolled adults with active ankylosing spondylitis who took at least two NSAIDs that were ineffective at treating symptoms. Most of the participants were men, average age of 41, and no prior usage of biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs.

Janus kinase could become a standard treatment

There is still not enough research to make a prediction, but the data is promising. The inhibitors seem to be a safe option when used in a properly screened, well-matched setting that includes regular monitoring. The inhibitors appear to be effective and have the advantages of being taken orally and working fast.

Body Composition


 

Osteoarthritis and weight loss

Being obese has shown to be a high-risk factor for the development of osteoarthritis. This is not only from the effects of extra weight on the body’s joints but also as a result of the inflammatory effects of adipose tissue. The lower back, hips, and knees, bear the majority of the body’s weight. An excess amount of adipose tissue on the body’s midsection and legs has been shown to negatively impact the weight-bearing joints. Promoting Lean Body Mass and encouraging weight loss lowers the risk of osteoarthritis and improves an individual’s quality of life. Exercise is regarded safe for individuals with osteoarthritis and should be incorporated to improve body composition, reduce Body Fat Mass, improve Lean Body Mass and maintain a healthy weight.  

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*  
References
Hammitzsch A, Lorenz G, Moog P. Impact of Janus Kinase Inhibition on the Treatment of Axial Spondyloarthropathies. Frontiers in Immunology 11:2488, Oct 2020; doi 10.3389/fimmu.2020.591176.�https://www.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fimmu.2020.591176, accessed Jan 21, 2021. van der Heijde D, Baraliakos X, Gensler LS, et al. Efficacy and safety of filgotinib, a selective Janus kinase 1 inhibitor, in patients with active ankylosing spondylitis (TORTUGA): results from a randomized, placebo-controlled, phase 2 trial.�Lancet.�2018 Dec 1;392(10162):2378-2387. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(18)32463-2. Epub 2018 Oct 22. PMID: 30360970.�https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30360970/�accessed Jan 19, 2021.
Body Composition: High-Intensity Training or Bodybuilding

Body Composition: High-Intensity Training or Bodybuilding

High-intensity interval training or bodybuilding? Getting to the gym, choosing a strength-training method, and figuring out which method is right for you can be frustrating and confusing. With all of the options available, there�s just no easy way to figure out which training regimen is right. Here are two of the most popular training methods broken down. The principles behind each training method and how they influence body composition. The journey to getting healthy goes a lot smoother when knowing which training program will help reach optimal fitness goals.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Body Composition: High-Intensity Training or Bodybuilding
 

Not all training programs are the same

Bodybuilding is about physical appearance. This means big muscles and low body fat which is accomplished by heavyweight training workouts. High-Intensity Interval Training/HIIT workouts focus on performing high-intensity exercises in large volume repetitions quickly to raise an individual’s heart rate, cycling between high intensity and rest. This is accomplished by using:
  • Light weights
  • Bodyweight
  • Cardio exercises
It�s important to understand that different training methods will affect body composition differently. Body composition is about painting an accurate picture of what�s going on in the body. The key is to break down:
  • What each training program looks like
  • What it does
  • How to choose the program that�s best for the individual
  • Gaining Lean Body Mass
  • Losing Fat Mass

Bodybuilding

 
Bodybuilding at its core is about gaining muscle while minimizing body fat. Minimizing fat is a key to building a muscular-defined physique, and requires a detailed focus on protein and calorie intake. It is the emphasis on aesthetically increasing muscle size and reducing body fat. Bodybuilders focus on higher reps and lighter-weight workouts. This encourages muscle hypertrophy. Other factors in bodybuilding are:
  • Adequate cardio
  • Consistent protein intake
  • Calorie restrictions
  • These are important aspects of this type of regimen and building visually impressive musculature.
This impressive musculature is not only for looks, as it can help with fat loss as well. This is because resistance training/weight training can burn a lot of calories and lose a substantial amount of fat. A study by the Department of Exercise Science showed that 10 weeks of resistance training can reduce fat weight by 1.8kg and increase resting metabolic rate by 7%.  
 

Body Composition

For the average person, if the focus is on building visible muscle while keeping a low body fat percentage, bodybuilding is a great choice. Ideal body composition focuses on keeping fat content to a minimum without compromise.  

High-Intensity Interval Training/HIIT

 
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Body Composition: High-Intensity Training or Bodybuilding
 
Modern training programs like CrossFit utilize HIIT-style workouts. HIIT burns calories through workouts that significantly increase heart rate. The exercises are short, loaded with mini-breaks in between high-intensity sets designed to test cardio. The focus is on high repetitions. However, HIIT workouts are so intense that professional trainers recommend individuals only train 2-3 times a week, to avoid overstressing the body. There are bodybuilding exercises included like: However, they are done with different goals in mind. The priority of a HIIT workout is to reduce fat, improve cardio, and developing some muscle.  
 

Body Composition

Scientists from Ohio State University observed more than 40 subjects at all levels of cardio fitness. Over the next 10 weeks, the subjects completed a variety of HIIT workouts. The scientists realized that the individuals were developing a more capable cardio system, and their body fat percentages were dropping significantly.
  • If the goal is to get stronger and lose weight, then bodybuilding is the best option.
  • If the goal is to have stronger cardio and lose serious weight then HIIT workouts are the best option.
No matter what training program is chosen. Remember that achieving a healthy body composition that the individual feels comfortable with is the most important thing. Making positive changes and achieving optimal health is the objective. Both workout strategies can be incorporated into a regular strength training regimen. Both training methods can be challenging, but the health benefits are absolutely worth it. Contact us today to help figure out which training regimen will achieve optimal health.

InBody


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*  
References
Ross, Leanna M et al. �High-intensity interval training (HIIT) for patients with chronic diseases.��Journal of sport and health science�vol. 5,2 (2016): 139-144. doi:10.1016/j.jshs.2016.04.005 Westcott, Wayne L. �Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health.��Current sports medicine reports�vol. 11,4 (2012): 209-16. doi:10.1249/JSR.0b013e31825dabb8
Easiest Exercises on The Spine and Back Muscles

Easiest Exercises on The Spine and Back Muscles

When lower back pain presents many want to retreat to the couch, bed and just lay down, but doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists, and spine specialists do not recommend this course of action. What they do recommend, other than treatment, is to engage in the easiest forms of exercise on the spine and back muscles. �

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Easiest Exercises on The Spine and Back Muscles

Staying sedentary is one of the worst things an individual can do to their back. When the back is aching exercise can usually help. This is because the muscles, ligaments, tendons are being stretched and not just staying still, which lets inflammation build up and swell. Moving keeps the blood flowing, allowing for broader healing and recovery.

However, back pain relief can be a challenge. Various treatment options exist because there are a variety of causes. The key is figuring out which type is best for each individual and their specific condition. An individual needs to know the cause of their type of back pain, as this determines which exercises should or should not be doing. The Pain and Therapy journal evaluated some of the best exercises for lower back pain. �

Physical Therapy Exercises

The McKenzie method can be very effective for acute disc herniation pain and sciatica. This type of exercise is to figure out if there is a specific position that helps the pain become centralized, correct any motion restrictions, and take the pressure off the region that is compressed or inflamed. Physical therapists incorporate McKenzie exercises as part of regular treatment. The strength-building moves are designed to help support the spine and consist of range-of-movement work and sustained positions.

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Easiest Exercises on The Spine and Back Muscles

Home and Studio Workouts

Pilates is one of the easiest exercises for individuals with chronic low-back pain. Like McKenzie exercises, it utilizes sustained positions that strengthen the trunk/core muscles. The muscles are strengthened using small movements. Using the machine called a reformer, has built-in support for the spine. This is considered a low-key, muscle-toning workout that can ease chronic back pain. �

Water Exercise

Water exercises lessen the body’s weight, taking pressure/stress off the spine. Deep-water running with the water at shoulder-height can significantly improve low-back pain. In a study, a group of overweight/obese women worked out twice a week for an hour-long exercise session. After 12 weeks, improvements in pain intensity, personal care, sitting, standing, and sleeping were reported. �

Easiest Office Exercise

One of the easiest exercises is walking. It is great for the body. But the key is to walk more than usual around the office, or wherever work is. This is not about getting the heart rate up. It is about not staying in the same position for too long. When sitting and focused, an individual can stay in an uncomfortable position for some time and just push through it in an attempt to finish up the work.

Using a timer or an application that alerts every hour to get up and stretch is highly beneficial. Walk correctly to the bathroom, or just get up and walk around for a bit gets the blood pumping through the body and the muscles in motion stretching and contracting. �

Stabilization Exercise

Strengthening workouts can be done at home.

  • Stretch while standing against the wall bringing the arms up and down.
  • Pull the elbows down into the back, which stops the hyperactive trapezius from tensing up.
  • Knee to the chest motion while lying on the back
  • Abdominal crunches while balance on an exercise ball
  • Push the head back into the headrest while driving. This helps avoid the forward head posture.

Contact a doctor, chiropractor, or physical therapist that can recommend the best stabilization exercises for the specific pain/condition. �

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Easiest Exercises on The Spine and Back Muscles

Tai Chi and Qigong

Tai Chi and Qigong are gentle exercises where an individual performs slow, controlled movements emphasizing balance and focus. Both can reduce pain, disability, and other symptoms associated with lower back pain. �


Body Composition Testimonial


 

Exercise After Childbirth

Physical activity for pregnant and post-birth, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends the following. The easiest exercise routines can be resumed gradually after pregnancy, once a doctor confirms it is medically safe, depending on the delivery, and the presence or absence of medical complications.

  • Pelvic floor exercises could be initiated in the immediate postpartum period.
  • Regular aerobic exercise in lactating women has been shown to improve cardiovascular fitness without affecting milk production, composition, or infant growth.
  • Nursing women should consider feeding their infants before exercising in order to avoid exercise discomfort.
  • Nursing women also should ensure proper hydration before engaging in physical activity.
  • Take it slow.

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

References

Pain and Therapy. (2020) �Rehabilitation for Low Back Pain: A Narrative Review for Managing Pain and Improving Function in Acute and Chronic Conditions.��https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40122-020-00149-5

Spine.�(2016) �Pilates for Low Back Pain: Complete Republication of a Cochrane Review.��https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26679894/

Strengthening The Core Muscles For Back Pain Relief

Strengthening The Core Muscles For Back Pain Relief

The core and the muscles involved are a group of muscles that wrap around the body’s torso. The front, back, and sides. Strengthening these muscles will improve and ultimately alleviate lower back pain. One of the main muscles that are overlooked is the transverse abdominis muscle. It is vital to a healthy core, especially if back pain is presenting. It’s known as the seatbelt muscle as it is deep in the abdomen and wraps around the waist. It has everything to do with long-term core strength and function. A properly developed transverse abdominus functions like a lumbar support belt that protects the spine. When the transverse abdominus is strong the muscle contracts to generate the correct amount of support and stability when in motion. �

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Strengthening The Core Muscles For Back Pain Relief

For example, individuals that do not have low back pain engage the transverse abdominus around 30 milliseconds before moving the shoulder, while individuals that have low back pain have a delayed contraction of the transverse abdominus muscles that makes them take on awkward postures, and move in an awkward fashion contributing to back pain and continuing to weaken the core muscles. Individuals that regularly do transverse abdominus strengthening exercises greatly reduce the risk of experiencing low back pain for the first time and reduce the recurrence of those already with back pain. �

Core Muscle Anatomy

The first step to strengthening is understanding the moves and how to do them correctly with basic anatomy. Think of the core as a muscle box where the:

  • The front is the abdominals
  • The back is the spinal stabilizing muscles
  • The base is the pelvic floor
  • The top is the diaphragm
  • The sides are the hip muscles

The core moves in three ways:

  • The body flexes and extends whenever bending forward and standing up
  • The body does a lateral side bend when bending the trunk to one side
  • The body rotates the trunk when twisting the torso

Muscle Weakness

The transverse abdominus tends to suffer from neglect which is one reason why it becomes weakened. This increases the risk of developing back pain. Another reason is that individuals have a weak muscle is they exercise in one-plane of movement. Not working out the core muscles in all planes of motion can contribute to back pain. For example, if an individual performs pelvic tilts, they are only moving in one plane when tilting the hips forward and back, known as flexion and extension. To achieve optimal/functional strength, the core workout needs to include side bending and twisting movements. �

Strengthening The Transverse Abdominus

 

Pigeon Pose

Many individuals sit for extended amounts of time and are excessively tight along the sides and hips. The first step should be to increase the hip’s mobility before strengthening the core. If the hip muscle’s fibers become shortened, it can affect hip joint function and efficiency during core movement. The Pigeon Pose is a hip opener. How to do it:

  • Get on the floor with the knees and palms on the ground.
  • Slide the left leg back so the hip is extended, then externally rotate the right hip/turn the right leg out from the hip. Focus on positioning the right shin perpendicular to the body.
  • Extend the trunk so the body is upright, lifting the chest, arching the back, and looking toward the ceiling, while resting the fingertips on the floor a little forward of the hips.
  • Hold the pose for 30 seconds and switch sides.
  • This stretches the hip flexor muscles in the extended leg and the rotator and outer hip muscles in the flexed leg.
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Strengthening The Core Muscles For Back Pain Relief

Pay Attention To The Engaged Muscles

Individuals can train the transverse muscles to activate faster and more effectively throughout the day by slowing down and paying attention to moving with more intent. Place the hands around the waist and engage the core to feel the muscles contracting. This will help get a feel for the movement. Once comfortable remember to engage these abdominal muscles before and while reaching, twisting, or lifting items. �

Pelvic Tilt

This exercise is vital for building the smaller muscles that support a healthy core. How to do it:

  • Lie on back with knees bent and feet on the floor.
  • Engage the transverse muscles and gently tilt the pelvis upward.
  • Return the pelvis to a neutral position.
  • Repeat.
  • Start with 3 sets of 10-12 reps.

When this is no longer challenging and can be completed without increasing back pain, advance to more challenging exercises like the bird dog, planks, or plank variations.

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Strengthening The Core Muscles For Back Pain Relief

Standing Exercises

Translating core strength into functional strength and pain-free movement progresses to standing exercises that require rotation. One example is a standing lunge with rotation. How to do it:

  • Get into a lunge stance with the front leg flexed 90 degrees at the hip, knee, and ankle. The rear leg should be extended at the hip with the knee touching or almost touching the floor.
  • Twist from the waist. When comfortable doing this movement, hold weight like a dumbbell, medicine ball, or gallon jug of water in both hands, and gradually increase the weight as the muscles get stronger.

When in the process of strengthening the core, consistency is the key. Commit to a short workout every day instead of one massive workout once or twice a week. Ten minutes a day is enough to build strength, improve function, and decrease back pain. �


Improved Body Composition

 


Functional fitness and the ability to move about comfortably not only benefit physical wellness but also improves body composition. The aging process reduces the metabolic rate, which leads to increased body fat. Lean Body Mass gets lost from age and inactivity. Lean Body Mass contributes to the overall Basal Metabolic Rate, also known as the body’s metabolism. It is the number of calories the body needs to support essential functions. Engaging in strength training or resistance exercises will help regain the muscle loss from aging/inactivity, and can lead to an increase in lean body mass.

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*

References

People who regularly engaged in TVA-strengthening exercises were less likely to experience a recurrence of low back pain:�Australian Journal of Physiotherapy�(2002), �Specific spinal exercise substantially reduces the risk of low back pain recurrence��https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S000495141460283X?via%3Dihub

Any Low Back Tingling, Discomfort, or Soreness Should Not Be Ignored

Any Low Back Tingling, Discomfort, or Soreness Should Not Be Ignored

Participating in any sports or physical activities strengthens the mind and body. But working out and engaging in these types of activities too much or without rest periods wears down the body. There is the feeling of a good workout with some sore muscles and achiness that lets you know the activity is working positively. However, soreness can quickly lead to pain and further injury if ignored. The lower back is a common area of soreness after working out playing sports, and where muscle spasms, pulls, and pinches occur. Being able to distinguish between workout soreness and pain is critical for maintaining a healthy spine.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Any Low Back Tingling, Discomfort, or Soreness Should Not Be Ignored
 
A constant-sore back or feelings of sharp pains is not normal. If there is a feeling of low back pain during or after a physical routine, stop and take a moment to examine the tingling, discomfort, or pain being experienced. If unsure if the soreness or pain is a cause for concern call or video conference with a chiropractor to discuss what is going on.  

Physical activity and pain

Individuals participating in physical/sports activities have an increased risk of low back pain because of the consistent running, twisting, and jumping. Any of these movements place pressure on the spine along with the surrounding ligaments and muscles, which can lead to injury. Repetitive twisting and turning, stresses the muscles around the spine, which can cause frequent muscle sprains. Running and jumping also wears down the vertebrae and discs. Impact activities can also cause injuries to the spine, nerve roots, and surrounding tissues. The most common back problems include:
  • Muscle sprains
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Bulging discs
  • Herniated discs
  • Sciatica
  • Fractures are less common but still pose a risk
Individuals should watch for achiness or stiffness that lasts longer than a few days and does not alleviate with ice or anti-inflammatory over the counter medication, or sharp pain that happens with specific movement/s, along with any pain, numbness, tingling that runs down the leg/s or to other areas should consult a medical professional.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Any Low Back Tingling, Discomfort, or Soreness Should Not Be Ignored
 

Treatment and prevention

Maintaining the body’s health is critical. If the lower back begins to present discomfort or hurts, do not ignore it. Many will play through the pain when they should be taking a break. And ignoring any back pain could create new injuries or worsen the condition. Continued pressure on the back will worsen any strains or fractures and will hinder the body from healing properly. Individuals tend to take on awkward/uncomfortable postures and move in awkward ways to avoid or compensate for the pain. This places added pressure in the wrong places and can cause/worsen an injury or condition. Pay attention to the pain. Try ice and heat therapy at home to see if it eases up. Using a foam roller or self-massage device can help if the back pain is muscular. However, if the pain is sharp, shooting, or does not go away, visit a chiropractor for diagnosis and treatment. A chiropractor will conduct imaging tests and physical exams to identify the root cause. Once a diagnosis has been reached a treatment plan will be implemented through:
  • Massage
  • Stretches
  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Spinal adjustments
  • Health coaching
Visiting a chiropractic professional will improve the condition and strengthen the spine.

Fit Body Composition

 

 

Muscle recovery

When engaging in physical activity there is microscopic damage to the muscle cells. The stress and fatigue the body goes through during physical activity cause hormone and enzyme levels to fluctuate, increasing inflammation. This leads to:
  • Fat loss
  • Increased metabolism
  • Increased strength
  • Muscle growth
However, it happens through proper recovery. There are different types of recovery: immediate, short-term, and training.
  • Immediate recovery is the short time between movements. For example, when jogging, immediate recovery is the time between each stride.
  • Short-term is the time between sets of exercises. For example, the rest periods between exercise intervals.
  • Training recovery is the period between one workout session ending and the next beginning.
Research has shown that rest time is not a one size fits all. Everyone is different and therefore should consult a fitness trainer, or sports chiropractor and experiment with what feels right. For some individuals, 24 hours works. For others, it can be 48 or 72 hours to feel fully recovered. It depends on age, fitness level, physical activity intensity, diet, sleep, and more.  

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
References
Smith, Jo Armour et al. �Risk Factors Associated With Low Back Pain in Golfers: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.��Sports health�vol. 10,6 (2018): 538-546. doi:10.1177/1941738118795425
Chiropractic Sedentary Prevention for Seniors and Staying Active

Chiropractic Sedentary Prevention for Seniors and Staying Active

Sedentary lifestyle prevention through chiropractic is highly recommended for seniors. With advanced age, the body’s muscles, bones, and spinal system begin to wear down and need to be maintained to retain their mobility and flexibility. Regular chiropractic adjustments are recommended as part of an active/fitness lifestyle for seniors and can help older individuals maintain optimal health.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiropractic Sedentary Prevention for Seniors and Staying Active
 

Sedentary Lifestyle Prevention

Many seniors tend to reduce physical activity after reaching retirement age. Many individuals just want to kick back and relax. However, living too laid-back can impact overall health. A lack of exercise and physical activity can cause the muscles, cardiovascular system, and skeletal system to prematurely wear out. Living an active lifestyle will keep individuals at their best when retiring and maintain a healthy quality of life.  

Pain Management

Chiropractic can help individuals realize their full potential. The chiropractic approach to achieving top health means treating the source of symptoms, and not just the symptoms. This helps maintain a high quality of life. Chiropractic sedentary prevention includes:

Adjustments

Adjustments to the body are the core of chiropractic. Adjustments are utilized to realign the spine that helps treat various nervous system-related conditions. These include subluxations, slipped discs, sciatica, nerve damage, and more. Adjustments also increase the immune system’s functionality. This is extremely beneficial for older individuals.

Nutritional Recommendations

Older individuals can benefit from a customized nutrition plan to help with any deficits in their diets. Often older individuals need more calcium to help fortify bone health. Chiropractors and health coaches can provide individuals with nutritional information needed to live a healthy life.  
 

Exercise Program

An active lifestyle is an essential component of staying healthy. Chiropractors can provide individuals with specialized exercises that take into account their specific and specialized needs.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is another component of chiropractic, as it helps enhance the adjustments.

Health Coaching

Health coaching can provide individuals with the tools necessary to take charge of their health. Counseling involves exercise recommendations, nutritional advice, healthy habits development, and more depending on the individual’s abilities.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Chiropractic Sedentary Prevention for Seniors and Staying Active
 

Stay Moving

A sedentary lifestyle places an older individual’s spine in a compromised position. Older individuals have an increased risk of developing detrimental spinal conditions. Overexertion happens more easily in weakened bodies. The solution is to maintain physical activity with proper support. Chiropractic is designed to improve the whole-body. If you�re looking for sedentary prevention and the latest care approaches, contact us, we’re ready to help!

Chiropractic Shoulder Pain Treatment

 
 

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
References
Hawk, Cheryl et al. �Best Practices for Chiropractic Care for Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Consensus Update.��Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics�vol. 40,4 (2017): 217-229. doi:10.1016/j.jmpt.2017.02.001
Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored

Scar tissue if left untreated/unmanaged could lead to mobility and chronic pain issues. Individuals that are recovering from a traumatic injury often have issues brought on from scar tissue. Scar tissue build-up is part of the healing process but in some cases, the tissue build-up can create another set of health issues. Restricted mobility and range of motion and lack of flexibility can worsen over time.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored
 

Chiropractors are taught to consider the presence of scar tissue when performing adjustments. This is especially true for patients recovering from a traumatic injury. If left untreated it could affect:

  • Recovery progress
  • Treatment approaches
  • The capability of the individual to handle the treatment
  • The planning and execution for a chiropractic recovery strategy

 

Scar Tissue Breakdown

Scar tissue can be broken up, managed, and kept loose/relaxed through various chiropractic/physical therapy techniques, stretches, exercises, and diet adjustments. Breaking up scar tissue and keeping it relaxed is necessary to restore full movement and range of motion. A certain degree of scar tissue will remain to mark the wound, but the pliability and softness of these tissues can be treated. Chiropractors can implement several techniques to break down scar tissue.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored
 

Graston Technique

The Graston technique uses instrumentation for addressing scarring in soft-tissue areas like the legs, neck, and lower back. A chiropractor targets the thicker scar tissue areas gently breaking them down.

 

Instrument Adjustment

Using a pulsating instrument, chiropractors can target specific areas of scar tissue buildup. The instrument massages the areas to improve flexibility and reduce stress in the tissue.  

 

Assisted Manipulation

The assisted manipulation technique soothes the area before performing manual adjustments. A chiropractor could use light oil for heat, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation to loosen tension, or numbing gel/cream to soften any sensitivity.  

Trigger point therapy

This therapy focuses on heavily scarred tissue areas, where there is substantial buildup. A chiropractor breaks down the scar tissue while continually testing the motion.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Scar Tissue Break Down with Chiropractic, Mobility and Flexibility Restored
 

Therapeutic massage

Therapeutic massage is necessary with widespread scar tissue. It improves blood flow and gently stimulates scar tissue to improve movement and alleviate pain. These techniques and how they are applied depending on the individual and the amount of tissue build-up. For example, certain techniques work better for different situations like:

  • The Graston technique could help after surgery
  • Trigger point therapy can help when muscle spasms, and knots present
  • Therapeutic massage could be best suited for soft tissue scarrings, like whiplash or muscle strains

 

Adjustment Attention

Recent injuries that produce scar tissue can usually be felt while a chiropractor palpates the area, while radiological imaging shows scar tissue from past injuries. A chiropractor will take note of these areas when developing a treatment plan. Severe scar tissue will need special focus, which could mean a longer recovery. This is because the body could take longer to adjust to the adjustments being made. A thorough consultation and investigation will be performed/examined before any adjustments begin.


Chiropractic Massage Rehabilitation

 


 

References

Shin, Thuzar M, and Jeremy S Bordeaux. The role of massage in scar management: a literature review. Dermatologic surgery: official publication for American Society for Dermatologic Surgery [et al.] vol. 38,3 (2012): 414-23. doi:10.1111/j.1524-4725.2011.02201.x

Brachial Neuritis: Shoulder, Arm, Hand Pain, and Chiropractic Intervention

Brachial Neuritis: Shoulder, Arm, Hand Pain, and Chiropractic Intervention

Shoulder and arm pain can be debilitating, especially when there is no obvious cause or injury that needs to be treated. A rare condition known as brachial neuritis can cause spasms along with pain down the arm, followed by numbness, tingling, and weakness. If not diagnosed and treated early, the symptoms can worsen with time. The pain experienced can be described as sharp, searing, and shooting. Brachial neuritis can be intense and disabling when it presents for hours and even days.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Brachial Neuritis: Shoulder, Arm, Hand Pain, and Chiropractic Intervention
 

Utilizing a chiropractic approach, shoulder and spinal adjustments can provide relief and a faster healing/recovery from the inflammatory condition. Individuals experiencing shoulder, arm, and possible hand pain should consult with a chiropractor about a potential home and clinic treatment plan to improve their condition.  

Medical History and Examination

The process of diagnosing brachial neuritis involves an individual’s medical history and physical exam. More complicated cases could require imaging studies and electrodiagnostic tests. The first steps in diagnosing the cause of shoulder and/or arm pain include:  

 

Medical history

Information will be collected on an individual’s:

  • Medical history
  • Family history
  • Underlying conditions
  • Recent illnesses or injuries
  • Lifestyle habits
  • How and when symptoms began
  • Current symptoms

 

Physical examination

A chiropractor will palpate or inspect by feeling the neck, shoulder, and arm for irregularities. Then they will examine the range of motion, strength, and reflexes. If the individual’s history and physical exam suggest that the cause could be brachial neuritis or other condition involving the nerves, imaging studies, and diagnostic tests could be required to evaluate further.  

Symptoms of Brachial Neuritis

The condition is also known as Parsonage-Turner Syndrome. It affects the brachial plexus, a set of nerves that run from the neck and upper back to the shoulders. The condition usually affects only one side of the body and presents randomly.  

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Brachial Neuritis: Shoulder, Arm, Hand Pain, and Chiropractic Intervention
 

What happens is the nerves become inflamed.

  • Inflammation can be triggered through an autoimmune response. This is often the result of an infection, surgical procedure, or other internal stressors. The inflammation can lead to severe debilitating shoulder pain over a few days.
  • This also leads to long-term numbness, weakness in the shoulder and arm.
  • The pain becomes worse with movement.
  • Typically, the pain goes away on its own within a few days.
  • Numbness, weakness, or tingling in the shoulder or arm continues.
  • Over time the symptoms begin to worsen and, if left untreated, could lead to muscular atrophy of the arm.
  • The pain and weakness can make it difficult to move the arm, leading to decreased strength.
  • Symptoms can last up to a year or more.
 

This is why individuals have to find ways to strengthen their shoulder/arm despite the condition.

 

Chiropractic Relief

Treatment requires a pain management program until the pain subsides. Once the pain is manageable, chiropractic, physical therapy, exercises, and stretches could improve mobility and strength. Chiropractic can provide relief and tools necessary to prevent the worsening of symptoms. Chiropractic helps to:

  • Reduces pain
  • Improves mobility
  • Restores strength

Chiropractic manipulation will ensure that the nerves near the brachial plexus do not become compressed, but if they are, then chiropractic can be utilized to decompress/release them. In addition, trigger point release and massage can help alleviate the tension in the surrounding tissues of the arm and shoulder.  

 

A chiropractor will educate the individuals on effective pain management techniques for home, including ice/heat therapy and stretching exercises. These techniques will help restore the proper alignment and flow of the spinal vertebrae, nerves, and muscle tissues, allowing the body to heal quickly, naturally, and more effectively.


Chiropractic Shoulder Pain Treatment

 

 

 

 

References

Feinberg, Joseph H, and Jeffrey Radecki. Parsonage-turner syndrome. HSS journal: the musculoskeletal journal of Hospital for Special Surgery vol. 6,2 (2010): 199-205. doi:10.1007/s11420-010-9176-x

Belly Dancing Can Help Alleviate Back Pain

Belly Dancing Can Help Alleviate Back Pain

Belly dancing has been found to be an effective way to help individuals managing low back pain. It could be utilized as a part of a chiropractic treatment plan. The dancing is beneficial for improving posture and allows an individual to improve their fitness with a light form of aerobic exercise.
 
Regular physical activity/exercise and a healthy lifestyle go hand in hand. For individuals with spinal issues, the right stretches and exercises can make a difference in their quality of life. It increases:
  • Strength
  • Flexibility
  • Helps with pain management
  • Improves posture
  • Maintains spinal alignment
Belly dancing can help with injury recovery, as well as overall health. For most the trouble with exercising regularly is that it becomes routine and boring. Individuals want to live healthily, but it can be a challenge to maintain interest and motivation. An alternative form of physical activity that qualifies as exercise could be the answer. Dancing has grown in popularity because of its fitness, flexibility, and spinal benefits. This form of belly dancing exercise does not require any special outfit or plenty of space. This utilizes the movements as a form of stretching and keeping the body moving in an aerobic fashion. They can be done at home with video instruction or an online class. Although the majority are women, men can and do belly dance.

Belly Dance

Information on the history of belly dancing. The dance has gone through various transformations since its inception. It was once considered burlesque entertainment, is now recognized as an important cultural expression, and today has been found to be a respected form of dance exercise.
 

Exercise

Belly dancing as physical exercise involves: Isometric exercises are contract specific muscles or groups of muscles. These types of exercise help with strength and stability enhancement. Both are vital for individuals recovering from back injuries or back pain management.

Posture

Dance posture is different than normal standing or sitting posture. Dance posture refers to the way an individual prepares/maintains their body to perform specific movements so that the motions are fluid, graceful, and with no presentation of pain. Belly dance posture maintains proper spinal alignment, which encourages reduced stress/pressure on the joints. This is beneficial for individuals managing back problems. The keys to spinal success are:
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Belly Dancing Can Help Alleviate Back Pain
 
When the abdominal and back muscles maintain/support a straight spine, this alleviates stress on the low back. Lower back issues have shown a positive response to a belly dance exercise therapy program. A study looked at the effects of belly dancing on pain and function in women with chronic lower back pain. The study found that belly dancing made movements of the trunk and pelvis that are known to influence low back pain much easier. A belly dance program in conjunction with a chiropractic or physical therapy treatment plan can help alleviate pain and improve function. A 45-minute belly dance routine/session promotes aerobic benefits, improves flexibility and core strength.

Core Strength

These are movements that train the muscles in the:
  • Pelvis
  • Abdomen
  • Hips
  • Low back
They help build strength, generate stability, protect against back pain, poor posture, and muscle injuries. Having core strength is crucial for individuals with back issues, as it increases the stabilization of the spine. Core strengthening is highly recommended and often prescribed for individuals recovering from lumbar issues.
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Belly Dancing Can Help Alleviate Back Pain
 

Depression/Anxiety Improvement

Individuals with back pain also tend to experience psychological issues like depression and anxiety. Back pain can affect:
  • Mood
  • Tiredness
  • Sleep problems
  • Self-esteem problems
Belly dancing as part of a treatment/therapy program can help an individual experience benefits that improve mental health and well-being. These include:
  • Regaining mobility
  • Having a positive body image
  • Social interaction is enhanced

For All Ages

Belly dancing is a fantastic creative outlet and a great way to exercise. Anyone that is able can participate. Children, seniors, and everyone in between can get into belly dancing. It enhances health and strengthens the body and mind. When the body is in the proper position/posture there are no joint issues or pain. In-person classes, at home with online instruction, DVDs, or video meeting apps can benefit the body and especially the spine.
 

Life-Changing Orthotics

 
 

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
Back Pain in Children

Back Pain in Children

Children and adolescents are experiencing back pain. Why it happens, and how parents can help prevent it is the objective. When thinking of back pain the image is typically a man or woman, hunched over grabbing their backs and wincing in pain. However, back pain in children and adolescents is not that uncommon. According to a 2020 study published in Spine, around thirty-four percent of children report having back pain, with almost nine percent experiencing severe back pain. By the time they are fifteen, 20 to 70% of children will have experienced back pain at some point. Developing chronic back pain increases with age and is more common in girls.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Back Pain in Children
 
The study found those that sought out early treatment, physical therapy, and chiropractic being the most prescribed lessened the need for more invasive treatments, like spinal injections, and surgery. Back pain can have a major impact on an adult’s life, and more so on a child. Prevention and treatment are important to help restore overall health and wellness.

Signs and Symptoms

Symptoms can vary, the most common:
  • Pain increases with movement, like bending or twisting
  • Increased pain after sitting or standing for an extended period
  • Sore and tender muscles around the spine
  • Tight muscles
  • Muscle spasms
Most back pain in children is mild. However, there are times when the child will require medical attention. A child should see a doctor if back pain persists for more than two or three days, if there is a fever, or if there is any numbness or weakness in the arms and legs.

Common Causes

Like adults, muscle sprains and strains are the most common cause of back pain. Strains are more common in the low back than around the neck or middle back and usually occur from overuse injuries, poor posture, poor body mechanics, and falls. Other common causes include:
  • Weak core
  • Overweight/obesity
  • Muscle weakness and stiffness
  • A sedentary lifestyle, not enough activity
  • Sitting and slouching in front of the computer for too long
  • Carrying an overloaded backpack
 

Spinal Conditions

Recreational and sports activities with injuries sustained are the most common causes of developing back pain. However, back pain can be brought on by underlying health and spine-related conditions. About a third of adolescents with low back pain could have a spinal condition. The most common conditions include:

Idiopathic Scoliosis

This is an abnormal curvature of the spine. This is usually not a painful condition. Some curvatures can be severe enough to cause pain and require medical care. Scoliosis can include the middle, low spine, or the entire spine. It is most common in adolescents 11-17 years of age. Symptoms include:
  • Tilted shoulders
  • Uneven hip bones
  • One side of the ribs projects out more than the other

Scheuermann�s kyphosis

This is a growth disorder of the vertebrae. It happens when the front of the spine does not grow as fast as the back of the spine. This can produce a humpback curvature. The spine bends forward but the child cannot stand up straight. Usually, it happens during accelerated growth periods.

Spondylolysis

The vertebrae can break in children and kids that do repetitive exercises involving bending and twisting. Sports like gymnastics and football create a heightened risk for spondylolysis. It usually affects the low back and presents with non-stop low back pain. The most common treatment is rest. Other causes include:
  • Spinal cord tumors
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Infection
Tumors and infections are highly uncommon in children. They often present with pain and fever. If the nerves are pinched numbness, tingling, and weakness in the extremities can develop.

Common Treatments

Back pain in children is usually a short experience and can be treated with ice, rest, and over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen for children and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen. A playing/exercise program can significantly help reduce child back pain. However, there could be a need to modify the activity, so as to not worsen the injury or create new injury/s. The activities could be made to be lighter or a brace could be utilized. A specialist like a chiropractor/physical therapist can provide treatment, along with exercises, stretches, and lifestyle changes that will help reduce the pain. Complementary therapies like massage and acupuncture can enhance the child�s healing/recovery time and knock out the pain quickly.  
11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Back Pain in Children
 

Parental Prevention

Proper posture can and will prevent back pain. Children’s and adolescents’ musculoskeletal structures continue to develop at this stage. Therefore, sitting, standing, and lifting properly is paramount to preventing back pain. Along with this is avoiding activities that place repeated strain on the spine. An example is an overexertion while playing sports. Tips for keeping kids back-pain free:
  • Avoid activities that generate repeated strain on the same muscles
  • Stretching breaks need to be incorporated when sitting for a long time
  • Limit sedentary activities
  • Teach proper posture
  • No slouching
  • As much as possible make the home a stress-free environment
  • Maintain a healthy weight and diet with balanced meals and snacks
  • Help promote overall mental and physical health
Children and kids that are stressed out or depressed have a greater risk of developing back pain. Encourage the kids to stay active, get proper sleep, stretch out, and eat foods that are healthy for the spine. If back pain is presenting, a customized treatment plan along with lifestyle changes will get the child back to their favorite activities.

Lower Back Pain Chiropractic Treatment


 

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*