Exercise Your Way Through the Holidays

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The holiday season is often packed with the hustle and bustle of planning events, shopping for gifts and travel.  During this time, you can find yourself stressed out and lacking energy.   Be proactive in taking care of yourself during this busy time.  One great way to do this is through exercise.

An easy way to reduce stress and improve health is to get moving.  You can do this maintaining your active exercise routine or incorporating spurts of activity into your day.  This could include taking a walk or cleaning the house.   Make a point to do something every day.

I know it seems like a busy time, and exercise might not be a top priority but try to work it into your daily activity for a healthier holiday season this year.

 

 

Ice or Heat for Your Injury?

IceorHeatredWhen you get injured, do you use ice or heat?

I find that people want to go for heat before they go for ice because it feels better warm than cold.  But there are definitive rules on the use of both.

When to Use Ice.

Always use ice for the first 24 hours after an injury.  Cold makes blood vessels constrict, which reduces pain caused by inflammation.   Also, use for inflammation reduction after activity – think of a baseball player icing a shoulder after a game.  Ice packs or frozen vegetables such as peas can be used.

When to Use Heat

Heat is a good pain reducer for chronic pain, but only after an area has healed.  Heat relaxes blood vessels and increases blood flow, which helps to aid healing.  This of back soreness after a long drive or finger pain from arthritis.  Use a hot water bottle or towel soaked in warm water for your hot compress.

Important!

Never apply heat or ice over skin that is damaged by rash, cuts or abrasions.  Place a damp cloth on the skin under the heat/ice pack and don’t use the pack more than 20 minutes every hour.

If you ever have a question on which home treatment you should be using, please call the office and I will be happy to guide you.

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How’s Your Posture?

Poor posture is a leading cause of back pain.  

usama-377315-unsplash (1)With the increased use of tablets, phones, and laptops, poor posture has become a common cause of back and neck discomfort for many people.  

Making simple adjustments to your posture can help keep yourself aligned and pain-free.  Having good posture helps you to avoid weakening or overusing muscles when you are sitting, walking and standing.  There are changes that you can make to how you stand, sit and carry yourself, that if done regularly over time, can make a  difference in your level of back pain.  

Dr. Sciullo can offer advice on how to make some simple changes in these areas to help to keep you out of pain.  

 

Photo by Usama on Unsplash

Avoid a Fall in the Winter

ross-kohl-177131 (1)While our area is experiencing a nice thaw at the moment, odds are another freeze or two is on the way before winter is over.   Even on a warm day, temperatures could fall overnight leaving patches of black ice in your path the next morning.   No one plans for  a spill on the ice in the winter, but there are ways to plan against it.   This article offers some good advice on minimizing your risk of this type of accident.

  • Wear proper footwear.  Look for slip resistant soles or invest in a pair of traction cleats that can easily be slipped over shoes or boots.
  • Check your steps and sidewalks before leaving your house in the morning.  Another good time to check is before stepping out of your car.
  • Scan the path ahead of you when walking.  If it looks wet, it could be black ice.

These few simple precautions might help you avoid an unfortunate accident.

Happy New Year!

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I hope you had a wonderful holiday with all of your family and friends.  May the new year bring happiness and health to each and every one of you!  The start of the year is a great time to reset our health priorities.  I’ve set a few goals for myself this year to be healthier.  Maybe you’ve done the same.  I’ve also set some new business goals.  One is to provide more frequent updates on this blog with health and wellness information.  Stay tuned as I strive to post at least once a week moving forward.  Thanks for reading and I look forward to serving you in 2018.
Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

New Guidelines For Low Back Pain

New Low Back Pain Guidelines Advocating Non-Drug Treatments First

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New low back pain treatment guidelines by the American College of Physicians (ACP) recommend first using non-invasive, non-drug treatments before resorting to drug therapies.

ACP’s guidelines, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine and based on a review of randomized controlled trials and observational studies, cite heat therapy, massage, acupuncture and spinal manipulation as possible options for non-invasive, non-drug therapies for low back pain. Only when such treatments provide little or no relief, the guidelines state, should patients move on to medicines such as ibuprofen or muscle relaxants, which research indicates have limited pain-relief effects. According to the guidelines, prescription opioids should be a last resort for those suffering from low back pain, as the risk of addiction and overdose may outweigh the benefits.

If you are experiencing low back pain, make an appointment with Dr. Sciullo at 412-343-3006 to see if chiropractic can help.

Photo Credit:  Copyright: <a href=’http://www.123rf.com/profile_chassenet’>chassenet / 123RF Stock Photo</a>

October is National Chiropractic Month

This October, doctors of chiropractic across the country will raise public awareness of the availability of non-drug options for pain treatment as part of National Chiropractic Health Month (NCHM) 2016.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that 259 million prescriptions for opioid painkillers were written in 2012 alone–enough for each American adult to have a bottle of pills. Research shows that as many as one in four people who receive prescription opioids long term for non-cancer pain in primary care settings struggles with addiction. Moreover, use of prescription pain medications for common conditions such as back pain and arthritis pain is one of the biggest drivers of opioid addiction in the general population.

“It’s important for the public to be aware of non-drug options for treating pain available to them. Chiropractic services and other conservative forms of care are an important first line of defense against musculoskeletal pain and may, in some cases, lessen or eliminate the need for over-the-counter and prescription painkillers,” said American Chiropractic Association (ACA) President David Herd, DC.

During the month-long observance, chiropractors nationwide will raise public awareness about pain management options by sharing information about chiropractic’s drug-free approach to treating back pain, neck pain and other musculoskeletal disorders.