Tips for Snow Shoveling to Avoid Injury

Shoveling snow can result in back injuries or worse. We all need to get out of the house eventually following a huge snowfall like the one we just experienced here in Durham, NC. Keep a few things in mind, however, prior to going outside to shovel that snow. Back injuries and heart attacks due to snow shoveling are all too common and can be avoided. When shoveling snow, take a moment to assess the situation and realize the job may take more time than you think. Don’t rush the process—hurrying will add to the possibility of falling as well as increase the stress of the situation. Get your warm high traction boots on, suit up, grab your shovel, and head outside once you’ve taken a few moments to consider how to best approach the task. Wet snow is going to be very heavy. When you dig your shovel down into the snow, assess how heavy each shovel full is before trying to lift it, especially if you plan to twist around and pile that shovel full to the side.Twisting with the added weight of snow can injure your back quickly; doing that repetitively can cause spinal joint irritation or even a herniated disc. You may not feel the effects of injury immediately due to the numbing effects of cold so be sure to take breaks periodically. Be aware of the amount of cardiac exercise involved in moving snow, as well. Crouching, digging, lifting and twisting heavy loads repeatedly in the cold puts a lot of strain on your heart, especially if you are stressed in a hurry. Stay safe out there!
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Cupping for Colds and Flu

Cupping is an ancient Chinese therapy that many people have heard of in conjunction with the Olympics as a treatment for muscle aches. Were you also aware that cupping can be an effective treatment for cold and flu symptoms? That’s because cupping relieves congestion in the body and stimulates movement of energy to restore and heal. Cupping deep tissue massage improves blood flow and helps to detoxify the area cupped and connected regions.
What is cupping?
Cupping utilizes silicon or glass shaped `cups` under which vacuum is created via suction or oxygen consumption. When placed on the skin and slid across trigger points and knots, cupping is an unparalleled example of transverse friction massage combined with skin lifting technique. Common areas of application for persons suffering from congestion, colds and flu include the midback between the shoulder blades, the upper back and shoulders, and lower back just below the ribs around the diaphragm. Stimulation of these areas with cupping reduces muscle spasm and helps with respiration and lymph flow. Following cupping you ill experience redness and warming to the area cupped as blood flow is increased and the skin and underlying muscles are rubbed with friction.
Essential oils and ointments can be applied on the skin surface prior to cupping. Oils such as eucalyptus, lavender and frankincense are anti-inflammatory, warming and pain relieving. These and other oils aid in circulation and naturally support the immune system. Other oil choices can include: oregano, rosemary, tea tree, lemon, lemongrass, peppermint, cinnamon, clove bud, grapefruit, sandalwood, basil, juniper berry, thyme, sage, ginger, cypress, and pine. A few drops of each essential oil can be added to a carrier neutral oil and massaged into the skin. Cupping performs gentle exfoliation and blood flow stimulation which helps the oil absorb while also helping to `exteriorize` toxins and reduce stagnation in general.
Persistent cupping marks that stay on the body post-cupping can be unsightly and undesirable to some. These can be avoided by moving the cups around and reducing the amount of time the cup is left in one place. Discuss this and other treatment goals with your practitioner prior to treatment. Also, some people may be concerned with the use of hot glass cups and the potential for burning of the skin. Many practitioners use unheated silicon cups today to avoid that concern.
You may receive cupping therapy as part of a holistic treatment regimen for cold and flu that also includes acupuncture treatment or the chiropractic adjustment, or all three together. These alternative medicine remedies for cold and flu are very effective for improving overall health and the body’s ability to heal itself naturally. Acupuncture meridian therapy improves metal yin (lung) and water yin (kidney) energy flow to heal the lungs and reduce stress in the body overall. Chiropractic adjustments to the neck and back improve nerve flow to vital organs such as the lungs and heart, and increase respiratory motion under the ribs and reduce congestion in the chest. Cupping works well with these treatments.
Following cupping therapy for colds and flu, keep the cupped area covered for 24 hours to avoid cold and wind exposure of the cupped area. If possible, try to retain warmth and rest for several hours to allow the treatment to take its full effect.
When you aren’t feeling well, contact your acupuncture and chiropractor provider to see if cupping can help you. It can improve your health and well-being on many levels.

Is the Chiropractic Adjustment Safe?

Hip Pain Doctor Chapel Hill, NC 

Is Getting Your Back and Neck by a Chiropractor safe? Many people ask this important question before coming into our office. People understand that their spine and nerves are delicate and need to be protected- it seems dangerous to have your spine adjusted (colloquially `cracked` or `popped`) to improve your health- doesn’t it? And what is a chiropractor? Many people have heard that chiropractors `aren’t real doctors` because they don’t graduate from medical school, and they understandably question the hands-on nature of the adjustment when so many other doctors never touch them at all!

Nonetheless, chiropractic is an extremely safe treatment regimen that has helped millions of people worldwide achieve better health on many levels. The cracking noise many hear during an adjustment is the release of energy that was stuck in the spine and has been released. Chiropractors explain this to their patients. Following internship and graduation from a 4 year chiropractic postgraduate program, chiropractors take board exams similar to MDs and DOs. Chiropractors are licensed in every state and most countries worldwide. Chiropractic malpractice insurance is among the lowest in the healthcare industry. Most health insurance plans and medicare have recognized the value and safety of chiropractic care and cover it for their members.

Chiropractic care is a hands-on therapy that emphasizes balance and posture at the spinal level. Following history and examination, your chiropractor will identify problematic, inflamed vertebral units and apply therapy to these areas.  The chiropractic adjustment, when applied by a licensed, professional doctor of chiropractic (DC) mobilizes specific vertebral units with speed and a minimal force using hands-on techniques or with a precise instrument. Therapies such as massage, acupuncture, TENS or ultrasound relax and heal surrounding soft tissues provide additional support. Your chiropractor will provide home exercises and nutrition suggestions to empower you in maintaining your health. Acupuncture may be used to improve the healing response of the chiropractic adjustment, a very safe and quality treatment duo.

The major support of your body, the spine, is responsible for balance and posture. Misaligned vertebrae result in postural distortions and vertebral fusion over time resulting in painful immobility.  Additionally, spinal nerves exit between each vertebral unit at inter-vertebral foramen (IVF). Back pain or neck pain indicate a vertebral unit has become inflamed which impacts the spinal nerve at that level. Seemingly distant problems such as indigestion, headaches, shoulder, or knee pain can result from spinal nerve derangement and can be improved with spinal mobilization.

Everyone can benefit from having their spines checked by a chiropractor. Whether you have back pain or neck pain, headaches or discomfort anywhere in the body, or if you have concerns about your posture, you should make a spinal check appointment. Chiropractors appreciate referrals from their friends in the medical community who recognize the safety and value of this holistic treatment. Pain relieving drugs, anti-inflammatory medications, and surgery have their place, but people who choose chiropractic first are relived at its safety and efficacy.

Our chiropractic and acupuncture office has been proudly serving the Durham and Chapel Hill community since 1995. For appointments call Acupractic Natural Healing Center, the offices of Dr. Lisa Oskardmay

(919) 929-1400       email:   schedule@acudocnc.com          Contact us!

Your spine and nervous system benefit from safe effective chiropractic care.

 

Serving the communities of Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Durham, Hillsborough, and the rest of the NC Triangle


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