The Best Sleep Positions to Avoid Neck and Back Pain

The Best Sleep Positions to Avoid Neck and Back Pain

The Best Sleep Positions to Avoid Neck and Back Pain

 

Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial for your overall health and well-being. However, the position in which you sleep can have a significant impact on your spinal health. At Desert Valley Chiropractic, we understand that proper alignment of the spine during sleep is essential for preventing pain and maintaining good health. Here are our top recommendations for the best sleeping positions to help you wake up feeling refreshed and pain-free.

Sleeping on Your Back

 

Back sleeping is often considered one of the best sleep positions, it really is the gold standard for spinal health. This sleep position allows your head, neck, and spine to rest in a neutral position, which means there’s no extra pressure on those areas. To enhance comfort and reduce lower back strain, consider placing a pillow under your knees to maintain the natural curve of your spine.

If you are exclusively a back sleeper choosing the right pillow can help avoid unnecessary neck pain.  You don’t want a thick pillow that pushes your chin down toward your chest, this will strain your neck causing neck pain and potentially headaches.  If you are a back sleeper you may want to consider a cervical pillow which can help maintain the natural curve in our necks.

Sleeping on Your Side

 

Side sleeping is another great example of the best sleep positions, especially for pregnant women and people suffering from chronic back pain. To get the most out of this position, make sure to:

– Use a firm pillow to keep your head and neck aligned with your spine.  You want your head and neck remain neutral which is to say you don’t want it to bend too far in either direction.

– Placing a pillow between your knees is crucial.  This can prevent your lower body from torquing (like wringing out a wet towel) which can pull your spine out of alignment.  A good option is to place a king or body pillow between your knees, because then you can hold or “spoon” the pillow with your arms so you don’t lose it when rolling over to the other side.  This is also helpful and keeping your knees and hips aligned which keeps your lower body from twisting too much.

 

Pro Tip – placing a pillow between your knees can also be a helpful way for people to transition away from stomach sleeping to side sleeping.  When you are on your side and you spoon the pillow you can fool your body into feeling like you’re sleeping on your stomach.

 

 

 

Back and Side Sleeping in Combination

 

It has been our experience over the last 20+ years that many patients will move from back to side sleeping through the night.  As noted above, both positions are good for our spinal health so there is nothing wrong with moving from one to the other.  In fact, this is the way I sleep, and I have found that it is important you choose the correct pillow to avoid unnecessary strain on the cervical spine.

Ideally you use a pillow that has a dip in the middle for when you are on your back but is also elevated on the sides so when you move from your back to your side you can maintain good alignment from your head to your neck.

sleep positions

Avoid Sleeping on Your Stomach

 

Sorry stomach sleepers, but there is no way to sugar coat this, stomach sleeping is bad. As far as the best sleep positions are concerned, this is the worse.  It is hard on both your neck and back. This position can force your neck to turn to one side, causing strain and discomfort. Additionally, your hips will sink into the mattress which is a common cause of morning back pain.

We hear all the time “but doc it’s the only way I can get comfortable enough to sleep” or “I have been a stomach sleeper all my life”.  Trust me, I know how comfortable stomach sleeping can be. While I just said that when I sleep, I move from my back to my side, I didn’t always do that.

Growing up and in my early teens I was a stomach sleeper, and on a waterbed no less.  As a result, when I was 13, I started to get lower back pain, so my mom took me to her chiropractor.  In addition to some great Activator treatment, I was also given some tips to transition away from a stomach sleeping.  It does not happen overnight, but it can be done and if you read the side sleeping section above you will get a helpful tip.

If you have tried everything and simply must sleep on your stomach please use a thin pillow under your head and another under your pelvis to minimize the strain to your spine.

 

Listen to Your Body

 

Your body will tell you if something is wrong, so if you wake up feeling sore or stiff, it might be time to evaluate your sleeping position, your pillows and or your mattress. Make sure your sleeping environment supports your spinal health.

 

Consult with a Chiropractor

 

Chiropractic care can be helpful with our spinal alignment so we can both feel well and move well.  If you’re experiencing discomfort despite making the adjustments in this article, it may be beneficial to consult with a chiropractor. At Desert Valley Chiropractic, we can provide personalized advice and treatments to help align your spine and improve your sleep quality.

 

Remember, the goal is to support the spine in a neutral alignment and avoid any positions that might cause strain or discomfort. Sweet dreams and healthy sleeping!

Car Accident – 5 tips to avoid an insurance hassle!

Car Accident – 5 tips to avoid an insurance hassle!

Car Accident – 5 tips to avoid an insurance hassle!

 

Unfortunately a Car Accident in Phoenix can happen anytime and anywhere, and they can be a real pain in the neck.  Here are 5 tips for the scene of the crash to avoid hassles with the insurance company.

According to the Department of transportations most recent statistics there were 6 063 428 accidents in the United States in 2021 with 2 497 657 injuries reported.   Of those 121 345 car accidents occurred in Arizona. Furthermore, in 2022, non-fatal injuries from car accidents were on the rise in Arizona. The Arizona Department of Transportation reports 52,411 injuries from car crashes, which was an increase from the year before.  

The statistics highlight the potential for non-fatal but serious injuries that often occur in traffic accidents, reinforcing the importance of a proper evaluation from a health care provider who has experience with these types of injuries.  They often require specific care after any accident, even if no immediate injuries are apparent. This can prevent long-term health issues, a concern especially relevant to chiropractic care, where underlying injuries can sometimes manifest symptoms days or even weeks after an accident.

Being prepared at the scene of a crash can help you handle the unexpected with a clearer mind. At Desert Valley Chiropractic, we care about your safety and well-being. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to take if you find yourself at the scene of an auto accident.

 

Ensure Safety First

 

As soon as an accident occurs, your priority should be ensuring the safety of all parties involved.

 

  1. Check for Injuries: Before assessing property damage, ensure that everyone involved in the accident is okay. Do not move anyone who is seriously injured unless there is a hazard that puts their life at immediate risk.
  2. Move to a Safe Location (if you have to): If the accident is minor and you feel the need to move the vehicles, or it is safer to move the vehicles as opposed to staying put, make sure you take many pictures from the scene of the accident, including the intersection and surrounding areas. Once you have moved your vehicle turn on the hazard lights.

 

 

 

Alert Authorities and Document the Scene  (Picture’s or it didn’t happen )

 

It’s crucial to report the accident to law enforcement. Many people skip this step, hoping the other driver (s) and their insurance will cooperate later. However,  after 20+ years of treating injuries related to car accidents cooperation is rare and it can affect your access to the health care you need to recover.

 

  1. Call 911: Even if the accident appears minor, it’s important to call the police. This is very important because they will document the scene and can help determine who is at fault, which can protect your access to health care if you have injuries from the crash.
  2. If the police are unable to come to the scene, once again take multiple pictures of the scene including the surrounding area. Also, you may want to call your own insurance company to get the details of the accident recorded in case there is a question of fault later.
  3. Wait for Help: Unless the authorities have told you they won’t be able to make it to the scene, stay until help arrives. Leaving the scene of an accident can result in legal penalties.

Exchange Information

 

While you wait for the police to arrive, exchange important information with the other party or parties involved.

 

  1. Driver and Vehicle Details: Collect the names, addresses, phone numbers, driver’s license numbers, license plate numbers, and insurance information of all drivers involved. Using the camera on your smartphone is a convenient collect the information you will need.
  2. Witnesses: If there are witnesses, get their contact information as well; their statements could be crucial in resolving disputes.

Seek Medical Attention

 

  1. If you have more serious injuries including a head injury, you may need to go to the hospital. If that is the case don’t hesitate.
  2. Even if there are no apparent injuries, it’s wise to consult a healthcare provider, including a chiropractor who can assess your condition and document injuries, which is crucial for insurance claims and potential litigation.

Injuries from a car accident like whiplash may not show symptoms immediately but can cause long-term discomfort and mobility issues. At Desert Valley Chiropractic we specific protocols to determine the extent of a car accident injury, and that has allowed us to help thousands of people with injuries related to a car accident

  

Conclusion

 

We have treated thousands of patients who have been in an auto accident and we know it can be overwhelming, but taking these steps can help ensure the safety and well-being of everyone involved. Remember to stay calm, be courteous, and follow these guidelines to manage the situation effectively. For more detailed information on what to do after a car accident, or to schedule a consultation, visit our website at Desert Valley Chiropractic.

 

Can Chiropractic Care Improve your Golf game?

Can Chiropractic Care Improve your Golf game?

Golf is an activity enjoyed by millions and in recent years the popularity has skyrocketed. Regardless of your level of play, anyone can enjoy a day outside on the course, plus it comes with many health benefits.  It might be surprising for some, but if you walk or use a push cart you can burn anywhere from 1400 to 2000 calories over 18 holes.  That’s a lot!

According to Dr. Tom LaFountain, Director of Chiropractic Services for the PGA Tour, most golfer will experience pain.  Statistics show that 80 percent of injuries suffered through golfing are back related. This is most likely due to the repetitive nature of golf. When a golfer swings repetitively, they are making themselves more likely to experience muscle strains.

 

More than a Monkey on Your Back:

While golf is considered a low impact sport, to swing a golf club can be quite violent.  Every golf swing puts a significant amount of compression load on the spine.  Studies have found that each swing can place up to eight times a person’s body weight on the spine.  Imagine if you are 180 pounds, that can be upwards of 1400 pounds of compression on the spine.

Over time this can compromise the spine, leading to misalignments of the vertebrae, joint dysfunction and pain.

 

chiropractic-golf-swing

Chiropractic Care and Golf:

Chiropractic care promotes optimum function of the whole body including the spine. We established a golf swing can be violent, and it absolutely requires coordination between several body parts. Chiropractic care can help with that.  It is an effective way to improve the function and mobility of the body by reducing the misalignments of the joints most compromised by repetitive motion.

However, it is not always about treating the injury after it happens.  Many people who participate in sport, not just golfers, enter the game already compromised.  They’re suffering from joint dysfunction or misalignment.  Playing any sport with a poor spine can lead to poor posture and poor joint mechanics which lead to injury.  Perhaps you have been playing Look Out Mountain golf club in Phoenix Arizona, and felt your back seize up after a routine swing. Chiropractors can adjust the spine to reduce misalignments and improve joint mechanics of the spine in order to prevent injury.  Regular chiropractic care is the best way to assure that you can not only prevent injury but also spend less time away from the course.

Why Tiger Woods Uses Chiropractic Care:

Tiger Woods is an incredible athlete and arguably the greatest golfer of all time.  He worked tirelessly from a very young age to be the best and chiropractic care has helped him do that.  He has said “I’ve been going to a chiropractor for as long as I can remember, it is as important as the practice of my swing.” He is not alone, Woods and many other professional golfers rely on regular Chiropractic care.  It helps them to maximize mobility and prevent injury.

 

 

We may not be on the same level as a professional golfer such as Tiger Woods, but all golfers want to play without the worry of injury or pain.  Consider visiting a Chiropractor near you to discuss how treatment can help you stay healthy and enjoy a day on the course.

 

Is Your Commute a Pain in the Neck

Is Your Commute a Pain in the Neck

Is your commute a pain in the neck? Is At some point most of us have experienced upper back and neck pain while driving.  Perhaps you turned your head to the side to shoulder check and felt a sharp shooting pain, or just a “crick” in your neck.

This is a problem.

It’s even more of a problem when the neck pain causes you to recruit your upper body to shoulder check.  Or it can get worse and you just “hope for the best” and not shoulder check at all.   We have all seen other drivers do that one.

It’s important to know what causes your commute to be a pain in the neck and how to fix it before you cause an accident.

 

Don’t accept anything less than a full range of motion.

This is not an “eh…its good enough” moment, you need to be able to comfortably turn your head.  Your safety and the safety of others are at risk here.  As a Chiropractor its crucial to evaluate a patient’s range of motion with they have neck pain. How far can you turn your head to the left and then to the right.

A full range of motion should include the ability to turn your head so your chin is in line with your shoulder.  You should be able to do this without shrugging your shoulders or turning your body and you should not have pain of any kind.  You don’t have to go “full exorcist” but you should easily be able to bring your chin near your shoulder.  If you can’t it is a sure sign that there is a problem not just with the muscles, but also the bones in your neck.

The pain may be more than just your commute.

The pain in your neck while driving may be more than the length of your commute, or the frustration of driving in heavy traffic.  The likelihood is that there are other factors as well, and your commute is where the pain manifests.

Most people work at a desk all day with poor posture, and then double up on the poor posture on the commute back home.   At a red light look at the posture of the other drivers around you.  I am sure you’ll notice that their head is way forward, their shoulders are rounded forward, and they are probably slouched down in the seat.

This posture puts a tremendous amount of extra load on your neck, leading to muscle fatigue, soreness, misalignment of the bones in your neck, and finally pain.

One simple thing.

While this tip is not going to fix the root cause of this problem (misalignment if the bones in your neck), It can be a very helpful thought when it comes to better posture.  Try pushing or pointing the top of your sternum (breastbone) towards the sky.  This naturally helps you sit up straighter and pulls your neck and shoulders back.

 

It’s all about alignment.

As tempting as it might be to chalk up your neck pain to stress or needing a massage, the reality is that your commuting conundrum comes down to alignment.

Think about it this way.

Your entire central nervous system travels to every part of your body from your brain and your spinal cord. The majority of your peripheral nerves pass through one or more areas of your spine. When your spine is out of alignment, these nerves become cramped sending distress signals to your brain.  This can present in the form of pain, numbness, tingling, or even burning.

Over time, if the neck is not realigned, the muscles begin to compensate for weakness or pain creating even bigger problems than before. If you fix the alignment problem, you fix the nerve problem which, in turn, fixes the muscular problem.

Chiropractic care is the best way to realign your spine and restore your neck’s range of motion. The cervical vertebrae, the bones closest to the skull, are capable of moving in every direction. But if they are misaligned, their movement is impeded. By carefully and strategically realigning these bones as well as the rest of the spine, you will find your range of motion is restored and your pain is relieved at the source.

Stop relying on your mirrors and dumb luck to stay safe on your commute.

At Desert Valley Chiropractic we would like to help you stay safe out there!

 

7 Awesome Benefits of Chiropractic Care

7 Awesome Benefits of Chiropractic Care

 

There are some surprising benefits of  chiropractic care. It’s a drug free, non-invasive approach to healthcare that has become popular in recent years. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the benefits of chiropractic care and how it can help improve your overall health and well-being.

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Pain Relief

One of the primary benefits of regular chiropractic care is its ability to relieve pain. Many people turn to chiropractic care as a form of pain management.  Patients seek out chiropractic for conditions such as back pain, neck pain, and headaches.  Chiropractors use a variety of techniques to relieve pain, reduce inflammation and improve range of motion.  These may include

  • Spinal adjustments to improve joint function.
  • Electronic muscle stimulation to reduce tension.
  • Rehabilitative Exercises to improve stability of an area.

 

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Improve Mobility and Flexibility

A common complaint that many people present to a chiropractor is a decrease in mobility and flexibility.  This is because the spine plays a crucial role in the body’s movement.  When the spine is out of alignment, it can lead to stiffness, limited range of motion, and even muscle imbalances. Chiropractors can use spinal adjustments to realign the spine, to help to improve mobility and flexibility. This can lead to reduced pain, better posture, less strain on the joints, and improved athletic performance.

phoenix-mobility-pain

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Its not just a treatment for the Spine

While it is true that Chiropractors focus heavily on the spine, for many of us it is not only about improving the alignment of the spine.  Joint restriction or misalignment in the extremities can lead to a decrease in motion and pain.  This can have a negative impact on shoulders, elbows, hands/wrists, hips, knees, ankles, and feet.  Many Chiropractors can improve mobility and reduce the pain in these areas through a Chiropractic adjustment.

knee-pain-treatment

 

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Boost Your Immune System

 

Chiropractic care can also help to improve overall health by boosting the immune system. The spine is closely connected to the nervous system.  When the spine is out of alignment, it can negatively impact the functioning of the nervous system. This can lead to a weakened immune system, making the body more susceptible to illness and disease. By realigning the spine, chiropractors can improve the functioning of the nervous system.  This can can lead to a stronger immune system and better overall health. Which is just one reason why patients continue to get adjusted; the benefits of long term chiropractic care.

Studies have shown that regular chiropractic care can increase the number of white blood cells,.  White blood cells are responsible for fighting off infections and illnesses.  A better immune system can lead to fewer colds and illnesses and a faster recovery time when they do occur. Additionally, the reduction in stress and improved nervous system function can have a positive impact on the immune system as well.

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Improved Mental Health

In addition to the physical benefits, chiropractic care can also have a positive impact on mental health. Many people experience stress and tension in their muscles, which can lead to headaches and other symptoms of tension. Chiropractic care can alleviate many of the common symptoms of stress, including muscle tension, pain and headaches.  Less of these symptoms can improve overall mental well-being.

Furthermore, research suggests that regular chiropractic care can also help to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression by promoting a sense of relaxation and balance in the body. This is because chiropractic care can help to regulate the nervous system, which plays a key role in mood regulation. Additionally, the natural and holistic approach of chiropractic care can also help to promote a sense of well-being and reduce feelings of stress and tension. Long-term chiropractic care can also help to maintain a sense of balance and well-being, preventing the onset of mental health issues.

 

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: Improved Digestion and Respiratory Health

Chiropractic care can also help to improve digestion and bowel regularity. The nervous system controls the digestive system, and when the spine is out of alignment, it can negatively impact the functioning of the digestive system. Regular chiropractic care can help to improve the functioning of the nervous system, which can lead to better digestion and bowel regularity.

The care provided by a Chiropractor can also help with conditions such as asthma, allergies, and sinus problems. The nervous system controls the respiratory system, and when the spine is out of alignment, it can negatively impact the functioning of the respiratory system. Regular chiropractic care can help to improve the functioning of the nervous system, which can lead to better respiratory function and less problems with asthma, allergies, and sinus problems.

Benefits of Chiropractic Care: It’s Non-Invasive and Drug-Free

Finally, chiropractic care is a non-invasive and drug-free approach to healthcare. Unlike some forms of conventional medicine, which may involve surgery or medications, chiropractic care is a natural and holistic approach to healthcare. This can be especially beneficial for people who are looking for an alternative to traditional forms of healthcare or who want to avoid the side effects of medications.

In conclusion, there are many benefits of chiropractic care. It is a form of alternative medicine that can offer many benefits to people looking to improve their overall health and well-being. It can help to relieve pain, improve mobility and flexibility, boost the immune system, improve mental health, digestion and bowel regularity, respiratory function and less problems with asthma, allergies, and sinus problems. It also provides a non-invasive and drug-free approach to healthcare. If you are experiencing pain or other symptoms, or simply want to have a healthier life… consider a visit to a Phoenix Chiropractor near you.