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What is Sciatica and how can Chiropractic help?

What is Sciatica and how can chiropractic help? At the chiropractic clinic here in Eastbourne, we hear a lot of people talking about sciatica and asking if chiropractic can help them. Like many people with sciatica, it is often a confusing time when trying to find the right treatment that will work for you. You can sometimes feel ‘left in the dark’ without knowing what to do.

Eastbourne Chiropractor Dr Gemma Crouch has written this blog to help answer your questions about sciatica and explain the benefits of chiropractic treatment for sciatica.

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is the name given to any type of pain or neurological symptom occurring along any part of the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the human body and runs from the back, through the buttocks and down to the feet on both sides.

Irritation to the sciatic nerve is what causes sciatica and the symptoms normally associated with it. This is usually caused by a nerve compression somewhere along its path.

The symptoms caused by irritation to the sciatic nerve may include: pain, numbness, tingling or a loss of sensation in the legs or feet. You may feel one or more than one of these symptoms.

How do I know if it is Sciatica?

We understand that having sciatica and the intense pain it can cause is frustrating and sometimes quite scary. There are lots of different causes and types of sciatica, so it is important to know what may be causing your symptoms in order to receive the most beneficial treatment for you.

Chiropractor’s perform an initial consultation involving a thorough medical history and physical examination of the neuromusculoskeletal system (muscles, joints and nerves) to find out the root cause of a problem or problems. We especially check through the nerves to see if there may be an underlying problem as we can detect trapped nerve type problems early.

Following the initial consultation, your diagnosis and personalised treatment plan is discussed with you.

If you suspect you may have sciatica, it is always best to speak to your chiropractor about any questions or concerns you may have before the problem starts to get worse. As they say, the longer you leave a problem, the worse it gets.

How can Chiropractic help with Sciatica?

Chiropractors are specialists in the detection, diagnosis, correction and prevention of muscle, joint and trapped nerve type problems. Sciatica and the symptoms of sciatica are usually related to the muscles, joints and nerves in the body.

Chiropractic care is effective for treating sciatica and for the relief of the symptoms related to sciatica. The treatment involved for sciatica is a combination of manual therapy, manipulation, soft tissue massage work and function rehabilitation and exercises. We will always explain the treatment to you and will never do any treatment that you are uncomfortable with.

Image shows Eastbourne chiropractor Gemma Crouch in the reception area of Lushington Chiropractic to accompany her blog on What is sciatica and how can chiropractic help?

Eastbourne Chiropractor Gemma Crouch talks about sciatica

Here at the chiropractic clinic in Eastbourne, we see a lot of people who have a history of sciatica. Due to this, some of my colleagues have written other blogs on sciatica which explore different angles and even some real-life cases of people who have had success with chiropractic here in Eastbourne for their sciatica.

Search for ‘sciatica’ on our blog web site backblog for more information.

Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne is a well-known local clinic and most people who see us are recommended by someone else at the clinic.

If you would like to learn more about the clinic or about how chiropractic care could help you, please click here or call us at 01323 722499.

Thank you,

Gemma Crouch DC, LRCC, MChiro, BSc(Hons)

Doctor of Chiropractic

Everyday Improvements: Part 3

Small Changes That Make A Big Difference

There are some small changes that can make a big difference, read on to find out more.

Bringing Your Lunch To Work

Often when we’re busy it’s tough to find the time to pre-prepare our lunch and bring it to work with us. This means we tend to dash out on our lunch break (with Lushington Chiropractic located in Eastbourne town centre we are spoilt for choice – good and bad!) and buy whatever is convenient and tasty. Unfortunately, it’s often tasty because it’s laden with sugar, salt, preservatives and flavourings in order to extend its supermarket shelf life. Even simple food like bread can contain these chemicals. If you’ve ever made your own bread at home you will know that it goes stale within 2-3 days. Compare this to a supermarket loaf, which can stay soft for weeks and you’ll notice the difference in truly fresh food.

Switching out pre-packaged, processed lunches and bringing your own homemade lunches to work instead can make a big difference to your health. You know what’s going into them, so there are no hidden sugars and preservatives and no hidden calories. Salads, wholemeal sandwiches, soups and stews are all healthy and will maintain stable blood sugar for your working day. Vacuum flasks will keep your hot food hot, which is nicer through winter. You’ll also save an awful lot of money over the year.

Image shows Lushington's Victoria White holding a glass of homemade fruit smoothie, to show how small changes can be beneficial

Lushington’s Victoria White bringing her lunch to work.

Baking Not Buying

In today’s supermarkets it’s incredibly easy to buy pre-made sweet treats. Often, they are located right by the checkouts to tempt us as we queue, which is particularly sneaky, but it does work! In days gone by treats like cakes and biscuits were actually treats, baked at home and enjoyed once or twice a week. Nowadays we are having these treats so often that they are part of our daily diet. No longer an indulgence, sugar is a regular part of our lives and we crave it most when we are tired and overworked.

It would be unrealistic to suggest cutting out sugar completely from our diets. Some people may be able to manage it, but most of us, myself included, would find it very difficult indeed. Making a switch to homemade treats has many benefits. We still enjoy the treat, but it becomes even more pleasurable and satisfying knowing that we have made it ourselves. Because there is no need to have a month-long shelf life we don’t add all the nasty preservatives and additives that the supermarkets need to so it is slightly better for us, or at least less bad for us. Also the effort that we have to put in, in order to make our own cakes or biscuits means that we won’t be doing it every day, and as a result we will be eating less of it.

Thanks for reading

 

Vicky 

Chiropractic Advice for Women Suffering Back Ache

If you are, or you know a woman who’s suffering with back ache then this blog is for you. In this blog I would like to share some self-help tips about women’s back health.

Hi, I’m James Revell a Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne and have worked in Eastbourne since 2004. I’ve seen thousands of men and women with back ache over my years of practice. There are often small but important things people can do to help themselves. This blog focuses on a few tips I find most useful for the ladies I see who are suffering with back ache. I hope that you find something in here which helps you. Not everyone needs to make all the changes but as they say “every little helps”.

Nearly three quarters of women suffer with back ache at some point in their lives and the problems highlighted here could be to blame.

Tight clothing that restricts moving freely, fashionable shoes that change your natural gait can affect posture and lead to back and neck pain. Overloaded and heavy bags can also be to blame, as well tight trousers like skinny jeans which restrict your back, hip or knee mobility. Anything that affects how you move your body should be avoided. Even heavy jewellery like statement necklaces for example can increase pressure on your neck.

I know it’s not just women who wear skinny jeans etc but for this blog I’ve put together a list of advice I’ve shared with some of the women I’ve treated who are suffering back ache

I thought I’d write this blog focusing on advice for women suffering back ache to share some basic advice to help ladies look after themselves better. There are some common culprits which until they’ve been pointed out to you are easily missed.

Chiropractic Tip: Check Your Shoes

We all know high heels are bad for us, but we wear them anyway Ok I know I don’t but you know what I mean! High heels change the angle of our foot, knee and hip, which in turn increases the angle in our lower back putting pressure there and can even result in compensations higher up your spine. So my first piece of advice for women suffering back ache is check your shoes. Are they helping or hurting your back?

I’m afraid even smaller heels can be bad for us. Hard soled shoes that don’t have any cushioning are also not ideal. I’ve recently changed my work shoes to softer ones because I’ve increased my hours and can be on my feet all day.

There are plenty of work-friendly trainers and (fairly) good looking comfy shoes (Sketchers, Hotter) to replace those uncomfortable shoes.

If you need to wear heels (either for uniform or fashion) for some of the time, and you’re suffering with back ache then make sure you can change out of them asap. Keep your comfy shoes handy and let your posture unwind as soon as you can.

Wedges or chunkier heels over stilettos are also a better choice. But don’t be fooled by slip on sandals, or flip flops without support at the back. They tend to increase strain on the muscles in your feet and can result in Achilles tendon problems.

Suffering back ache? Then Vary What You Wear

For some men and women suffering back ache the culprit can be simply wearing the same types of clothes every day. Tighter clothes restrict the body from moving freely so looser clothing, baggier trousers and straight leg jeans are a good alternative choice. Varying what you wear will vary how much, and what pressure is put on your muscles and joints.

Getting the Right Support

Clothes are important but what you wear underneath can also affect your back ache. Bras need to fit properly so that the shoulders don’t take all the strain. When shopping for bras, look for one that has an underband that is neither too tight or too loose. The centre fastener should sit close to the body and the straps shouldn’t be too tight on your shoulders.

I don’t know of any good Bra Outfitters in Eastbourne but I have had a few ladies go to Brighton to Bravissimo. If you have an Eastbourne based recommendation please share it below in the comments section of this blog.

Whilst we’re talking about underwear and advice for women suffering back ache I’ve had a number of ladies who’ve helped themselves by changing the size or type of skirts/trousers they wear. The effect of elasticated waist bands on underwear coupled with the tops of tights and an elasticated waist band on your skirt or trousers can really affect the back. It’s the layering affect which makes a difference, especially if the waist bands are a little tight in the first place.

Image shows ladies balancing a book on their head to insure a good posture stance.

Here’s a picture of good old fashioned posture practice.

Is Your Overloaded Bag Causing your Backache?

Men and women can both be guilty of carrying too much. However here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne, our chiropractors conducted an exercise for our patient’s to weigh any bags they routinely carried with them. Some women had handbags that they carried everywhere weighing over 5kg!

If you’re suffering with back ache then pay attention to the bag you carry around and regularly check for and empty your bag of unnecessary items.

My advice for men or women suffering back ache is to change to using a backpack if you need to carry items around with you. Back packs are best for your posture as the distribute weight evenly across both shoulders.

Try to avoid bags that must be carried in the crook of your arm, as the weight of these held away from your body pulls one shoulder lower than the other, twisting your neck and spine. If your bag has one strap alternate the shoulder you carry it on or wear it across the body.

Image shows a skeletal figure carrying a heavy bag on one shoulder and its affects. To accompany the blog on women suffering back ache

Here’s a picture of how a heavy bag can affect your posture if carried incorrectly or overloaded.

Perfecting Your Lifting and Carrying Technique

Many men and women suffering back ache find that housework, DIY and even just playing with the children can trigger their back ache.

When you’re lifting make sure your legs are hip width apart, knees bent and tummy tight. Keep your head and shoulders directly above your waist and keep the weight you are carrying as close to you as possible without twisting.

New mothers are especially at risk. Their body has gone through the changes associated with pregnancy and the birth process and then they have to cope with the sleep deprivation and physical demands of feeding a new born. Many women suffering this type of new baby back ache find that lifting the children in and out of the care very challenging. My advice: keep your tummy tight and keep your child as close to you as possible.

Take Regular Breaks

When doing gardening, housework or DIY vary what you’re doing and try not to spend more than 20-30 minutes on one thing. This will relieve the build-up of back ache.

Come on Eastbourne – Stop The Slouch!

Men and women suffering back ache need to make sure their bottom is against the seat back with your shoulder blades touching the rest of the chair. Try to ensure that your hips are higher than your knees.

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

The final piece of advice I have for men and women suffering back ache is to make sure you’re sleeping in a supportive position and good mattress.

It’s best for your back to sleep on your back. If you sleep on your side, then put a pillow between your knees to avoid twisting over. If you’re still suffering backache at night then you might need to change your mattress. Are you waking up feeling stiff or achy? Or is your mattress is misshapen or sagging?

If your mattress is past it’s best or over seven years old you might want to think about buying a new one.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this blog please comment if you have any questions and I’ll be pleased to help. Our clinic is Lushington Chiropractors, we’re based in Eastbourne. Our Chiropractors have a wealth of advice and knowledge that they can give you on many subjects and we have many information leaflets that are available on a wide range of subjects.

 

Thank you

 

James Revell DC,LRCC,MSc(Chiro),BSc(Chiro),BSc(Biol)

Chiropractor and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne

LATEST CHIROPRACTIC NEWS

You can also check out my personal site where I share my back care top ten tips.

In-flight exercise advice by Eastbourne chiropractor

Exercises on the plane are incredibly important. We’ve all heard of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and this can be prevented with some simple exercises, I also tend to advise compression socks for a long flight also. There are a few exercises that I tend to do when I travel and I have summarised them here. Some are easier than others and I have separated them into sitting and standing exercises.

Seated in-flight exercises

Seated exercises are easy exercises that you can do to help to prevent things from stiffening up too much and keep the blood flowing. These are also easy to do without other people noticing you and easy to do in a confined space. Lots of people don’t like to do exercises obviously in the aisle as it can seem a bit embarrassing. I personally will do mine anywhere but some people don’t like to do this. These are designed to get lots of different joints moving and blood flowing. These are also targeted at different parts of the body.

Image shows couple doing in-flight exercises by rotating their ankles in each direction

Ankle circles – lift your feet off the ground and rotate ankles in both directions

Foot pumps – have your feet flat on the floor, lift the toes up as high as you can keeping your heels on the ground, then lower the toes back down and raise the heels off the ground keep the balls of your feet on the floor. Repeat 10 times.

Seated march – keeping your knees bent lift your feet off the ground alternating between sides as if you are marching while seated. Do this for around 30 seconds.

Neck movements – turn your head side to side ten times, then up and down ten times and then ear to shoulder 10 times.

Knee to chest – lift your knee into your chest as high as you can five times each side.

Shoulder rolls – roll your shoulders forwards ten times and then backwards ten times.

The picture demonstrates a man seated pulling his knee up to his chest to accompany the blog on in-flight exercises

Knee to chest exercise

Standing in-flight exercises

Extends

The picture demonstrates a man with his hands in the small of his back and arching backwards and keeping his legs straight

Extends – as we tend to sit in a slouched position I find this one really important and it’s one I do every time I get up from my seat. Standing up tall place your hands in your lower back and arch backwards, hold for a couple of seconds and repeat ten times.

Side bends – stand up tall and place your hands by your sides, slide one hand down the side of your leg making sure you don’t let your body bend forwards, then do the same to the opposite side and repeat ten times.

Lunges – with sitting so long our glute muscles (the ones in our buttocks) go to sleep. I find that lunges are a good way to switch these muscles back on.

Squats – also a good exercise to get the glutes switched back on. The key thing with a good squat is that your weight goes through your heels.

Calf stretches – when I travel my calves always get tight so I find stretches invaluable. Calf stretches are a great one to do in general but on a plane very useful. I tend to do these when I am waiting for the toilet, as there is always a queue.

These standing exercises are really good and I always do these if there is a stopover on my flight also. Another good thing to do if you have a stopover is make sure that you take the stairs instead of the escalator. It can be tempting to take the escalator as we are often very tired but as we haven’t been moving the stairs are the option that you should take. A foot massage is also a very good thing to do on a stopover or after a long flight in general. When we flew to Thailand we got a foot massage not long after and it was amazing and I would highly recommend it to anyone.

These exercises are very useful and doing these on your flight will help to prevent DVT as well as keep the muscles and joints moving and working.

Yours in health

Mykel Mason your Eastbourne chiropractor

Everyday Improvements: Part 2

Small Changes That Make A Big Difference

Using a standing desk

Let’s face it, humans did not evolve to sit all day long. It’s bad for our health because it leads to lazy weak muscles and it is also terrible for our backs. If you are a desk worker you are likely to spend months or years of your life in a sitting position. We may sit for 8-10 hours a day at work and then go home and go to bed – an incredible number of sedentary hours. Even if you are sitting in a reasonable upright position with a straight back, this is still not ideal. Most of us when sitting do not adopt this perfect posture and end up slouched and slumped with our heads slightly forward towards our computer screens and this can lead to chronic low back strains, neck pain, headaches and many other issues. In fact, the inactive desk job can also reduce your life span for up to two years compared to more physical jobs!

Switching our regular sitting desks to standing desks has a multitude of benefits. It encourages us to move around more, which helps us burn calories. It also forces us to use our postural muscles instead of sitting and slouching, which keeps them stronger and working as they should. Studies have shown that using a standing desk instead of a sitting desk can increase our heart rate and burn up to 50 calories more an hour. Over a year this can mean 30,000 extra calories are burnt, which equates to 8 lbs of fat. All with no change to your diet at all – a worthwhile switch!

Walking to work

Switching your usual drive to work for a walk, or partial walk will make a huge difference to your overall health. We all know the theory that little and often can make a big difference, but it is remarkable how few of us put this into practice. If you live near enough to work that you can walk, (Lushington Chiropractic is close enough for some of my colleagues to walk to work), then it’s worthwhile getting up half an hour earlier and walking. This will get your metabolism working first thing in the morning, the exercise will strengthen your muscles and the fresh air will clear your head and prepare you for a busy day at work. If you live far from work then driving in a little earlier and parking slightly farther away will help tremendously too. Try to make this a habit and incorporate it into your daily routine. Most people find that they really enjoy getting some extra exercise in a way that is not too strenuous.

Image shows chiropractor Mykel Mason practising a silly walk to accompany the blog by fellow chiropractor Victoria White about switching old habits for new.

Chiropractor Mykel Mason walks to work everyday – not always in the fashion shown in this photograph!

Thanks for reading

 

Vicky

 

Airport and Flight Advice by Eastbourne Chiropractor

I’ve recently been away and what I have found out, is that you can take the chiropractor out of the Lushington Chiropractic clinic but you can’t take the clinic out of the chiropractor. What this means is that no matter what I was doing I still looked at everything with a chiropractic perspective. What I’m going to do is take you through some of the thought processes that I went through during my travels and it might give you some inspiration to look at things with a chiropractic mindset.

At the airport

The first thing was the airport. Airports are one of the most stressful places I have ever been, so dealing with this stress is really important. I found that the best way to do this is just to be early. My wife is particularly stressed at airports and we have to be there well in advance to calm her down. The realism is that it is a lot easier to get through airports these days and a lot quicker in general. You can now do online check-in, the bag drop is easier and security is pretty much just the same.

The other thing to watch out for is obviously your bag. If you are going long haul then you will usually have a pretty heavy bag so the way you lift it and the way you wheel it is important. Most people these days do have a suitcase that you are able to wheel and this is definitely something that I recommend, still with these there are also times that you are going to have to lift them. When lifting you bag make sure that the weight is close to you and that the place you are lifting it to is also close. Try not to swing it onto the place that you are putting it as this gives you less control and overall requires more force. When loading into a boot of a car always put it as close to you as possible and then if you need to push it further into the car rather than trying to put it there straight away. The opposite applies when getting it out where you should pull the bag closer to you and then lift it out.

Before your flight

One of the things that annoys me at airports are the seats. I am very particular about seats and the posture that we have on them, just ask my wife about when we went sofa shopping. Whenever I’m buying new chairs or a sofa the main thing I will look for is that it is ergonomically good for me. This is why when I go to the airport it can be quite irritating as most seats are really quite uncomfortable. What I try to do at the airport is not sit down too much because the realism is that soon enough I’m going to be sitting on a plane anyway. Sitting followed by sitting is not necessarily the best thing for us. I personally am not a shopper at the airport but will probably have a glance around just to keep moving. In reality everything is really overpriced and I would not intend to buy anything in the airport apart from food or a coffee, well hot chocolate in my case.

When we were on our way back and we stopped off in Melbourne, we were at the airport for a good 4 hours. As we’d already been off the plane to wonder around and we were both feeling the need for a shower, we decided to look into the airport lounges, we were flying with Emirates so we went up to their lounge and realised that it really was quite expensive and basically for the business and first class passengers for which it is already included. They did however recommend us to another one which was associated and it was 35 Australian dollars each, but for this we had four hours where they provide you with a towel, shampoo and shower gel so you can have a shower and also you have a separate section where you can sit where the seats are much more comfortable than downstairs, a separate Wi-Fi which is a lot quicker and also you get a buffet of food and drinks where you can eat as much as you like. There is also alcohol available but before a long flight I would not recommend this as it tends to dehydrate the body. We were going to go and get food and realistically we would have spent less money than this but it was definitely worthwhile for the great selection and the increased comfort. This is not something that we would do regularly but before a long-haul flight I’d highly recommend it. It was so much better for us and certainly something we would do in the future.

The picture demonstrates a man and woman standing smiling in front of a sign for the Marhaba airport lounge in Melbourne airport.

Us after we’d been to the airport lounge

On the plane

The next difficult thing is getting your seat right on the plane. I always feel embarrassed to put my seat back as I feel that this will affect the person sitting behind me, obviously that doesn’t stop the person in front of me putting their chair right back. On long-haul flights you are provided with a cushion and I believe this is supposed to be for your neck but I always use it in my lower back and pop it in the small of my back to help to give me the extra support and give me a better posture, you can always ask for a spare cushion as well which you can then use for your head, I like to take a neck pillow just to help support my neck in the rarity that I do fall asleep. Having a slightly reclined position has been shown to reduce the pressure on the disc in the lower back but this then changes if your low back is rounded and you’re slouching.

Regularly getting up is important as it helps to get the blood flow going and get the muscles working. If you do not move enough on a long-haul flight this does increase your risk of deep vein thrombosis. There are some exercises that I tend to do when I’m on a long-haul flight which I found really help. It really surprises me when I see people on these long-haul flights and they do not get up for the entire flight. This to me can be quite dangerous and it is important that you do get up and move around. I personally believe that it would be a good idea for there to be a treadmill on planes so that people can walk but the feasibility of this is not that high. If you would like to see the exercises that I do on the plane then have a look out for my next blog on aeroplane exercises.

After your flight

Most long-haul flights have a stopover somewhere and this is where lots of people miss the opportunity to have a break from sitting and move around a bit. Often you are tired so it is very tempting to jump on that escalator and sit in those chairs but I always make the effort to take the stairs and walk around instead of sitting as not long from now I’ll be sitting on the plane again. This helps to get the blood flowing and switch the muscles back on the help to protect you from injury, this is something that I highly recommend.

One of the things that we also did was get a foot massage when we arrived in Thailand. This was a fantastic experience and certainly something that our feet were very happy about after this long flight.

The picture demonstrates a man and woman sitting with their feet up waiting for a foot massage.

Our foot massage was definitely a good choice and an absolute bargain in Thailand.

 

Yours in health,

 

Mykel Mason your Eastbourne chiropractor

 

Everyday Improvements: Part 1 . Switch old bad habits for new.

Small Changes That Make A Big Difference

Wellness magazines are full of useful “switches” that you can make to improve your diet and your health. Switches such as eating healthier yoghurt instead of ice cream, eating low-sugar dark chocolate instead of the calorific milk chocolate, and eating fruit instead of sugary unhealthy snacks. This has got me thinking about how we can apply postural and movement advice in the same way; switching out our old bad habits for new habits. This blog aims to start this “switching” process and help you improve your health in small, convenient and most importantly effective ways. We have already written in previous blogs about the best sleeping positions for your back, a topic so important that it deserved its own blog! If you wish to read about that, please follow the link here.  Once you have read that, feel free to read on as we are going to start with how to get out of bed….

Images shows divan bed to accompany the blog by chiropractor Victoria White on everyday improvements.

How long have you had your bed and mattress?

What is the best way to get out of bed?

When we first wake after a night’s sleep our lumbar discs are particularly vulnerable. This is because after lying horizontally for so long they are well hydrated and slightly plumper than normal. Getting out of bed in the wrong way can lead to disc damage or back strain and significant pain as the body has not yet warmed up for movement. For the same reason, it’s not a good idea to leap out of bed and start doing yoga exercises first thing in the morning – something that the more energetic among us may be inclined to do! So, how you get out of bed is important. Firstly, roll onto your side and bend your knees allowing your feet to drop from the side of the bed. After that keep your back straight and push yourself up with your hands into a sitting position. Take your time and make sure you keep your back straight.

Getting out of bed in this way will ensure that you don’t do what most people do, which is a combined movement of lumbar flexion and twisting in an effort to go from a supine face-up lying position immediately into a sitting position.

Lifting heavy items, for example shopping

This is a very important change to make. Many of the patients who come in our doors at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne with low back injuries have done the damage through poor lifting techniques. Let’s face it, most of us try to make life as easy as possible for ourselves, which means that when putting the shopping in the back of the car we tend to combine the movements of bending forward, lifting bags and twisting to turn to put them in the car. In fact, what this does is that it combines all the activities that the low back does not like and leads to a far greater chance of lumbar sprain/strain injuries.

A better switch is to separate the movements. With your shopping at your feet, keep your low back straight and bend your knees so you can go into a squat. Tighten your abdominal muscles to brace your low back and lift your shopping so that you straighten into a standing position. Once you are upright keep your abdominal muscles braced and turn your whole body so that you can put your shopping in the car, or onto the kitchen work surface, etc. By separating the lumbar flexion and the twisting movements into two distinct movements, and keeping your abdominal muscles raised, you are far less likely to suffer a lumbar injury in this way.

Thanks for reading

 

Vicky

Eastbourne Chiropractor Recommends Walking

I’m James Revell a Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne and I recommend walking as a great form of exercise. I have worked in Eastbourne since 2004 and have always taken an active approach to keeping fit and healthy. In this blog I would like to share some tips on self help ideas to explore when walking. I have been a member at many of the local gym’s in Eastbourne and as a chiropractor I am always keen for my guests (patients) to keep active.

Chiropractors Recommend Walking As A Way To Keeping Active

Walking is one of the easiest ways to get more active, lose weight and become healthier. However, for some walking can aggravate aches and pains, or they simply cannot understand why it is supposed to be enjoyable and easy.

Walking as a form of movement can bring many benefits but when walking consider the following and explore these actions.

Keep Your Head Up

Many people look down when they are walking, worried that they may trip or fall. Looking down brings the neck down with it which puts strain on the muscles and a compression of the spine. Looking out pushes the chin forward and can squash the back of the neck.

Pay attention to the top joint of your spine between your ears and allow that area to be a little freer. If you need to look down then let your eyes drop first and allow a gentle nod of the head without shortening your neck column. When going up hills, try to visualise the crown of the head leading the way.

The Weight of the World on Your Shoulders

We can get into bad habits with the way we use our arms and shoulders for emotional and psychological reasons. Walking is a great time to release a lot of that tension. Allowing the arms to float out to each side will widen the front and back of you. Swinging your arms naturally results in rotational movement throughout your whole body. Try not to restrict your hands and fingers by holding anything or putting them in your pockets. If you need to carry a bag try a rucksack so that the weight is evenly distributed.

Walking On Air

Think of how you are walking, do you have a heavy tread for example. Try to let the hip joint be free and allow the leg to swing like a pendulum. Be aware of the space around you which can help you expand and breathe more freely.

Spring In Your Step

Once in this more relaxed swing try to keep your feet more underneath you and stride out to lessen stiffening of the foot and ankle. Wear shoes that enable your feet to be at their natural shape, range of movement and flexibility. Even walking barefoot stimulates the arch muscles and wakes up the sensory awareness of your feet.

Image shows Chiropractic team from Lushington Chiropractic walking along Eastbourne seafront

Here’s a Picture of some of our team getting some exercise and walking along the seafront in Eastbourne.

Relax

Our busy lives and thoughts can interfere with our balance, breathing and using our energy effectively. Try to practice being attentive to yourself and your environment. For example pick something in the distance ahead of you and as you walk imagine that you are on a travelator. Try to relax the eyes and let them move freely to what draws them. When we are rushing around we often pull in our chests and this can compress the back. Try walking backwards while thinking of your back becoming long and broad, then when you turn forwards again see if you can keep this sense of your back. This is good to try going up hills and here in Eastbourne we have Beachy Head and The Seven Sisters which are great places to try this out!

Any of the Chiropractors here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne can give you more self- help tips and advice on a range of topics.

Go Natural

Walking on a treadmill in a gym can have its benefits but to maximise your physical and mental wellbeing, seek out natural environments that can give you pleasure. Exposure to nature and green space positively affects our health and well-being.

Whatever your age or ability, walking and keeping on the move will improve balance, co-ordination, freedom of movement and confidence.

For more information and other self-help ideas and tips you can also check out my personal site where I share my back care top ten tips. If you’re in Eastbourne, Seaford, Hailsham, Bexhill or the surrounding East Sussex areas then we’d love to see you at our clinic. We’re based in Eastbourne town centre. However if you’re not local then we suggest you ask friends for personal recommendation for a chiropractor local to you.

Thank you

James Revell

Chiropractor and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne

 

Chiropractic Advice on how to Choose an Exercise Class or Gym in Eastbourne

If you’re looking for an exercise class or gym in Eastbourne, then here’s some key ideas to remember.

Chiropractors Recommend Keeping Active

I often recommend activity and exercise to help people recover from back pain. Whether that’s rehabilitation exercises or joining a gym it’s important to keep mobile.

However, when you are recovering from back pain, it’s important to make sensible, informed and achievable decisions about how you move and exercise. An excellent reason for going to a gym class is that the variety of different activities can be in a social setting but you can still be in control of what you can manage to do.

I’ve found that people here at Lushington Chiropractic often get better results when they combine their Chiropractic treatment with exercise and self-help advice. However, it can be difficult to know what type of exercise or class is best for you.

In certain competitive sports, like football or tennis where you have to move suddenly to get the ball it’s virtually impossible to stay in control of what you’re doing.

For people returning to activity after an injury I usually recommend home rehab, walking, gentle jogs, an exercise class or joining one of the many gyms in Eastbourne. I want you to choose a form of exercise that’s right for you, so you can stay in control.

Exercises classes and gyms can be particularly popular if you like listening and moving to music. They’re also social, fun and uplifting and the class instructor and fellow classmates can all help with motivation.

There’s Plenty of Choice in Eastbourne

Go and watch a class before you do it so that you know what is involved. Once you have decided to go to your first class, go a little earlier and have a word with the class instructor. Tell them that you are recovering from back pain and that you may have to do parts of the class a little differently or rest for a while. his gives the instructor opportunity to give “low impact” options during the class.

If you see me or one of my colleagues for your chiropractic care I’ll be more than happy to advise on classes and gyms in Eastbourne.

Chiropractors always recommend you Listen to Your Body

When you’ve found the class or gym in Eastbourne that suits you start off steadily. Don’t push yourself too hard too soon. Pain is not gain! Listen to your body, and don’t over do it.

You can still join in by doing fewer repetitions of the movement or moving slower. Using a lower weight or stopping the class or warming down earlier are also options. Every personal trainer or gym instructor will want to know if you’re struggling and will reduce the intensity of the exercise if needed.

Don’t get Competitive

I enjoy playing Touch Rugby here in Eastbourne. It’s much safer for me as a chiropractor than contact rugby, but my Eastbourne team members and I still get competitive!

Remember once you’ve chosen an exercise class or gym, you don’t need to be the fastest or the strongest. Exercise is about taking part, and keeping the habit going.

There will always be someone who can run faster or is older but quicker than me but “run your own race”.

Lots of Gyms and Exercise Classes Available in Eastbourne

Here in Eastbourne there are many exercise classes and gym options that are on offer.

Back friendly options include;

  • Aqua fit – moving to music in a pool
  • Tai chi – a gentle martial art, slow movements and good for balance and breathing
  • Zumba – sort of line dance with Latin and world rhythm music. Depending on the class this can be high or low impact (Zumba gold is a little gentler)
  • Energie fitness for Women in Grove Road, Eastbourne
  • Pilates – there’s various places, but one which has lots of classes is the Natural Fitness Centre on Eastbourne Seafront
  • Yoga – try the Natural Fitness Centre and there’s also a range of classes at the Enterprise Centre near Eastbourne train station

Ask your Chiropractor or Massage Therapist

Your chiropractor or Massage therapist here at Lushington Chiropractic will be happy to help. They’ve got lots of local knowledge about exercise classes and gyms in Eastbourne and will know what best suits you. Just let them know that you’re keen!

If you’re not already a patient here, but are looking for local Eastbourne advice, then please leave a comment at the bottom of this blog. I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

We also work in conjunction with several Eastbourne exercise classes and gyms – just ask your Chiropractor for further information.

The Image Shows a Massage Therapist Tree Climbing in Eastbourne, perhaps he couldn't find a gym in Eastbourne to suit him?

Here’s a Picture of one of our more adventurous Team Members Getting some Exercise on the downs outside Eastbourne. Can you guess who it is?

Classes To Exercise With Caution

  • Step – simple all body workout with a lot of choice between low and high impact movements.
  • Spinning – on stationary bikes. Adjust the bike, get a good position and don’t go too fast.
  • Body pump – uses light to moderate weights. No bouncing but lunges, bends and crunches.

Classes Not To Do When You Are In Recovery

  • Body attack – high energy class. Lunges, press ups, squats, running and jumping.
  • Jump fit – on mini trampolines. Fun but difficult to control your movements.

Here in Eastbourne we are lucky to have a beautiful seafront promenade and The South Downs on our doorstep for “free” walks that can help to keep you active in the fresh air and outdoors.

Whatever you choose and decide to do – just ENJOY.

Thank you,

James Revell

About Me:

I’m a Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne. I have worked in Eastbourne since 2004 and I have always taken an active approach to keeping fit and healthy. I have been a member at many of the local gym’s in Eastbourne and as a chiropractor I am always keen for my guests (patients) to keep active.

 

Ten ways traditional acupuncture can help ease back pain

I’m James Revell a Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne and I would like to share some tips on ten ways traditional acupuncture can help ease back pain.

I have worked in Eastbourne since 2004. Here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne we provide a range of treatments and acupuncture is one of them. Traditional acupuncture is one of the most popular complementary therapies practised in the UK today. It involves gently placing extremely fine, sterile needles at specific points on the body to trigger a healing response. As in Chiropractic care traditional acupuncture looks at the root of the condition as well as the symptoms to try to promote longer term health and well-being.

So, if you’re looking for a complementary or alternative treatment in Eastbourne, then I hope you’ll enjoy reading this blog with my tips on ten ways traditional acupuncture can help ease back pain.

Talk about it

If you’re not happy with your current situation or diagnosis, get another opinion – don’t live with pain. Before you commit to having any treatment, the practitioner can discuss your problem and help you understand whether acupuncture can help you.

Personalised for you

Each person is treated as a unique individual so the acupuncture points chosen for one person with lower back pain may be different for another person with the same symptoms.

Pinpoint pain

Contrary to popular belief traditional acupuncture is not scary or painful. Some people are naturally wary of needles but the single use, sterile needles are the same width as a human hair so are extremely fine. To guarantee a high standard of safety and care, it’s important to find a fully qualified and insured acupuncturist registered with the British Acupuncture Council.

Although primarily a chiropractic clinic we work in conjunction with and alongside other healthcare professionals. Dr Carolyn Rubens a local GP and traditional acupuncturist is one of them. To read more about Carolyn please click on the following here

Natural pain relief

By stimulating nerves located in muscles and other tissues traditional acupuncture helps release “happy” hormones including endorphins and oxytocin, which are the body’s natural pain relieving hormones. These hormones can change the way the body processes pain, helping to reduce discomfort.

The Image Shows fine acupuncture needles inserted into a knee

Here’s a Picture showing the fine needles used in traditional acupuncture.

Reduces inflammation

Traditional acupuncture has been shown to reduce inflammation and swelling by stimulating blood flow to the affected area and dispersing excess fluids to aid healing and recovery.

Get moving again!

Many patients can find that even after one session of traditional acupuncture their mobility and movement will be improved and muscles don’t feel as stiff. The number of sessions required will depend on the individual and whether the pain is chronic.

Reduce medication

If you are a back-pain sufferer and are tired continually taking pharmaceutical drugs, traditional acupuncture can potentially reduce the need for the long-term use of medications without the side effects often attributed to them.

Better outlook

Traditional acupuncture treats the whole person – body and mind. When you start to feel the benefit of treatment it can restore hope and positivity.

Cost-effective

A short course of acupuncture compared to “usual NHS care” is more cost effective in the long term for persistent lower back pain.

Complementary or alternative

If you are reliant on painkilling tablets traditional acupuncture works just as effectively alongside modern medication but consult with your GP before undertaking additional treatment plans.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog and about how ten ways traditional acupuncture can help ease back pain. For more information on acupuncture or dry needling (Western Medical Acupuncture) practised by Victoria White (Doctor of Chiropractic) alongside her chiropractic treatments please read our other blogs or by visiting our meet the team page at www.LushingtonChiropractic.com.

Thank you

James Revell

Chiropractor and Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne