Maintaining A Healthy Spine

beechbone

Member
1 Jun 2011
56
30
18
Singapore
Lets start off with a brief introduction of how it was meant to be. A couple of a thousand years ago, we had to hunt for our dinner plates. But in this short period of time, the human species have advanced so far so that most of us had to sit in front of a screen for 5-8 hours a day and meals served. Humans are made to move. We were given the mobility of countless number of joints in our skeletal system for speed, strength and mobility. We have advanced too fast for evolution to catch up, which explains the problems which plague us in this present day.

The entire spine is made up of 7 Cervical vertebra, 12 Thoracic vertebra, 5 Lumbar vertebra and 1 sacrum. To sum it all up, there are 25 movable joints in the spine. In an anatomical definition, joints are: A point of articulation between two or more bones, especially such a connection that allows motion.

The key word here is MOTION.

However the spine is also the most underutilized and uncared for by most of us. To prove this point I ask this question. How many of us here know the field of Chiropractic and the roles of a Chiropractor. Sitting in front of a screen all day is not natural. We were born to move. Every single cell in the body has its own unique purpose. In between each vertebra are discs. The function of discs is to provide cushion or shock absorbers. Losing these discs can mean increased stress and degeneration of vertebrates, fusion of vertebral joints and nerve interference.

Nerve interference in the spine can affect every single organ or limb in the body. Here are some examples:

  1. C1- Migraines, Headaches, Insomnia, Chronic tiredness, Dizziness
  2. C4- Sinusitis, Allergies, Tinnitus
  3. T4 syndrome- Numbness/Tingling/Stiffness in hands and fingers.
  4. T8- Low Immunity
  5. L3- Sciatica, Menstrual problems(Painful/Irregular)
  6. L5- Cold feet, Leg cramps, Weak ankles
nervechart.jpeg

However a form of healthcare has been designed to help people cope with the change of lifestyle. What a chiropractic adjustment does is precise manipulation of the vertebra, allowing subluxated or “out of alignment” ones to move back into alignment or sometimes “pop” back. Hence the familiar saying of cracking the back. It is no different from cracking your knuckles. A vertebral subluxation is a complex of functional and/or structural and/or pathological joint changes that compromise neural integrity and may influence organ system function and general health.

Furthermore the benefits go beyond realignment. Joints do not have a blood supply and require constant motion to flush fluids in and out. It allows the discs to receive nutrients necessary to keep it thick and healthy so as to maintain the purpose as a shock absorber.

The Benefits of Chiropractic

Short-term and regular chiropractic care have a number of benefits including:

  • spinal and extremity pain relief
  • headache relief
  • increased mobility and range of motion
  • decreased stiffness and muscular spasms
  • arthritic joint pain relief
  • increased joint health
  • increased performance and energy
  • increased sense of well being and relaxation
  • increased balance and coordination
  • reduced degeneration and risk of injury
  • enhanced tissue healing
  • decreased tissue inflammation

Healthy Back Tips
  1. Exercise regularly. This does not have to be anything overly strenuous. Something as simple as a daily walk can make a huge difference.
  2. Eat a healthy diet. Proper nutrients allow the body to repair itself easier
  3. Maintain good posture. Are you sitting up straight as you read this?
  4. Stretch your spine before and after sports. This will also help to loosen up the surrounding muscles.
  5. Don't overload your backpack or purse. Remember to carry it over both shoulders to balance the load
  6. Stretch your legs and back after each hour of sitting. Whether in a car or at a desk, stretching regularly will help to keep you from tightening up or injuring yourself further.
  7. Never cradle the phone between your neck and shoulder
  8. Sleep on your back or Side, Not on your stomach. This helps to keep your spine in line and reduces the risk of hurting your neck while you sleep.
  9. Invest in a good chair, pillow and mattress. When you think about the amount of time you use these things each day, it's worth it.
  10. Have regular spinal check-ups. It's much easier to prevent a problem than to correct one.
 

msnangersme

Well-Known Member
1 Jun 2011
436
61
53
Singapore
Do u practice chiropractic? I got a question, since chiropractic involves the "cracking" or popping of joints:

When I "crack" my knuckles often, will it result in the knuckle joint area slowly becoming larger over time? A teacher once advised me against cracking the knuckles often because long term ur joint area will get bigger, eg ur finger joint will look "swollen". She used herself as an example and say she didn't know about it when young and cracked her knuckles alot, now her fingers not long and straight.
 

beechbone

Member
1 Jun 2011
56
30
18
Singapore
yes i do practice but im still in the early stages of my apprenticeship.

cracking is what u hear when jammed up joints are opened up hence beneficial as it allows fluids and nutrients to nourish the joints. u would probably realise that after a crack that the joint becomes more flexible e.g. in fingers/spine.
but non-essential cracking for example the urge to do it for the sake of it say 10 times a day may be degrading to the joint and it may become inflamed and painful. the body would try to minimize the friction by swelling the fluid sacs. inadvertly leading to an increase in mass.

opening of joints is not to be dealt with easily. cracking of fingers is rather straight forward- pulling them apart or bending them to the limit. care must be taken not to have any rotation.
 
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pitdog

Active Member
25 Jul 2011
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WAaa. I think i easily crack my finger more than 10 times a day :( sometimes I even turn my wrist too to crack it.
 

msnangersme

Well-Known Member
1 Jun 2011
436
61
53
Singapore
opening of joints is not to be dealt with easily. cracking of fingers is rather straight forward- pulling them apart or bending them to the limit. care must be taken not to have any rotation.
Rotating finger/joints to have the cracking effect is harmful then?
 

beechbone

Member
1 Jun 2011
56
30
18
Singapore
Rotating finger/joints to have the cracking effect is harmful then?
Some people show off by showing others how they can adjust themselves and don’t need chiropractic care. “Look!” they say, “I can ‘crack’ (Urgh!) myself.” Then they proceed to grab their neck, head, hips or whatever and produce a whole cacophony of snaps, crackles and pops. Finger joints are relatively straight-forward and easy. Furthermore it has become part of our morning routine that even if a doctor tells you not to, u would still do it.

Here is the truth:
· The noise produced when a ‘crack’ sound is heard is not the same thing as an adjustment.
· Vertebrae that are highly movable (hypermobile) and make a lot of noise when you twist your neck, back or hips are usually the ones not needing an adjustment.
· When you make a lot of noise with your spine, it’s a sign that certain vertebrae are jammed and not moving (hypomobile) while others are overcompensating for the jammed ones (that move very little) by moving too much.
· Manipulating vertebrae that are already too movable doesn’t do anything for removing nerve pressure, and in fact, may do damage to the joints and the spinal curves.
· Although a release from tension may be felt, it’s usually temporary and the urge to ‘crack’ reappears. The cause of the hypermobility has not been cleared up.
· In order to be effective, an adjustment requires a specific force introduced into the fixation at a specific angle which is rarely possible to do oneself.

After a jammed (hypomobile) spinal vertebrae has been returned to normal mobility by a chiropractic adjustment, the overly noisy vertebrae start to quiet down. The fixated or stuck ones are now beginning to move properly in relation to the rest of the spine.

Remember your spinal column and nervous system is the only one you have, don’t risk damage by randomly cracking away at your own spine
 

sinful

Global Moderator
Staff member
1 Jun 2011
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Singapore
gymkaki.com
I confess to having this unhealthy habit of self cracking my spine a few times daily. Feels good but now it looks like there are heavy consequences for doing so :(
 

luXy

Well-Known Member
8 Jun 2011
647
88
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Bedok
Is chiropractic well recognised in Singapore? Have not really heard or seen much of this field. Maybe its just me :/
 

beechbone

Member
1 Jun 2011
56
30
18
Singapore
some degeneration is expected. locking up of some joints. mobility affected and the ageing process is accelerated.

however the body is constantly breaking down the renewing bone structure. with good care and treatment, a year is all you need to get back to shape.
 

eyz

New Member
2 Oct 2011
3
0
1
109
Hi,

I have a qns to ask on how to recover well from a misaligned sacroiliac joint.

I am currently seeing a TCM on my waist problem. The pain was first discovered on my front left groin. After seeing the TCM, he determined that the pain was caused by the misaligned sacroiliac joint.

So, he did the normal massage and did the 'crack' for me.

He re-aligned my waist by having me lying face down and lifting my left leg up. And immediately, the pain on my front left groin went away.

He did advised me to take good care of my posture, and I should watch my movement, that is, no big movement.

I tried as much as possible to follow his advice and had since stopped my running and lifting.

But out of the 6 times that he did the crack for me, only 2 times where the crack wasn't heard.

The TCM did something like that


And he said the crack sound should not be there.

Same for the below movement,


He said the 'crack' sound sound be minimal and sometimes the different can determine whether it is a good 'crack' or bad 'crack'.

Hence, I would like to ask, what else can I do, in order to recover fast and well.

Or is there any way I can do the backward leg lift crack on my own?
Thanks.
 

beechbone

Member
1 Jun 2011
56
30
18
Singapore
right. im not saying TCM is not good, but it has its limitations. for example they dont do x-rays to identify the main cause of the problem. but it seems that its helping u, so its fine.

if u have a misaligned sacroiliac joint, it is essential for u to do Lumbo-Pelvic traction/exercises.


this would be helpful. do it every 30mins while sitting down or when ure driving and not moving. there isnt a need for something to be below the butt, and just roll it front to back and vice versa.

another option is for u to get a gym/exercise ball. it will help in improving spinal flexibility, stability, core balance and makes the abs and back muscles stronger to support your condition. just have one in your living room and u can bounce on it while watching tv or reading a book. your whole family can use it as well and would be beneficial to all.
 

PWiD

Well-Known Member
20 Jul 2011
291
34
53
Is your misalignment due to excess or limited mobility about your sacroiliac joint?

edit : or due to 'twisted'/imbalanced pelvic structure - one hip higher than the other
 

eyz

New Member
2 Oct 2011
3
0
1
109
beechbone: thanks for the advice. will go dig out my exercise ball tml. anyway, just want to hear your advice, whether the TCM said is true, that there shouldn't be any crack sound when he did the leg backward lift on me?

PWid, I am not very sure whether it is due limited or excess mobility? but I usually lift and squat with full ROM.

I think I injured my back when I did deadlift and barbell row for the first time. Initially, It was faint ache in the spine.

But the SI joint pain came later when I was doing fast squats, without proper warmup.
 

PWiD

Well-Known Member
20 Jul 2011
291
34
53
I suggest you start doing body-weight squats if you're given the green light to do so. This should serve as a lesson learnt for not warming up properly before your workout d:
 

eyz

New Member
2 Oct 2011
3
0
1
109
thanks guys, advice taken.

i had stopped my weights and running since.
 

sunnyxy

New Member
13 Apr 2013
3
1
1
36
May I ask if anyone here has tried Thai massage to help alleviate back pain? I am considering that and deep tissue massage, as visiting a chiropractor is a little bit too drastic for me. Would appreciate your feedback and opinions =)

edit: i found a list of thai massage places here - Thai Massage in Singapore | Massage Singapore - it's quite useful, has anyone tried the places on the list? Do share your experience.
 
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