Archive for the 'Neck Pain' Category

Chiropractic Care Beats Medication for Neck Pain

New research published February 2012 in the Annals of Internal Medicine finds spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) and exercise more effective at relieving neck pain than pain medication. The study divided participants into three groups that received either SMT from a doctor of chiropractic, pain medication (over-the-counter pain relievers, narcotics and muscle relaxants) or exercise recommendations. After 12 weeks, about 57 percent of those who met with doctors of chiropractic and 48 percent who exercised reported at least a 75-percent reduction in pain, compared to 33 percent of the people in the medication group. After one year, approximately 53 percent of the drug-free groups still reported at least a 75-percent reduction in pain; compared to just a 38-percent pain reduction among those who took medication. The study, funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and co-authored by ACA’s 2011 Researcher of the Year, Dr. Roni Evans, is making headlines across the country. The results of the study have appeared in the AARP Blog, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, WebMD and “World News with Diane Sawyer” among other media outlets.

Convertibles & Sun Roofs Irritate the Head & Neck

This is the season for drivers of cars with convertibles and sun roofs to make everyone else wish for the feeling-of-freedom they appear to have, but their cars have some disadvantages!  The deleterious effects on the head, ears and neck may be profound. 

When it is prohibitively and the vehicles have dark-colored interiors, the direct and reflected off-the-dash sunlight causes perspiration.  Conversely, the constant flow-of-air from the open top causes rapid evaporation of the perspiration which chills, pounds and dehydrates the scalp, ear canals and skin over-lying the neck.  This predisposes us to headache, earache and neck stiffness and spasm, respectively.

Sun roofs are more damaging to the drivers’ RIGHT ear and neck areas because the flow of air is greater above the console over the right ear.  Passengers in the front seat are effected on the LEFT side.  These one-sided reactions often build-up slowly then shock us with pain and stiffness when we lift objects overhead, turn the head rapidly or sleep with the head turned.

The best way to travel in an open convertible or sun roof car is to wear close-fitting garments on the head and neck and COVER the effected ear! Happy motoring.

Read more of my full-length articles on spinal and general health at the “Health Information” link at www.DrSaracino.com.

Car Accidents Produce Neck Pain

The most common car accident is one where a stopped vehicle is struck from behind by another.  The resulting jolt, which may not produce much damage to the vehicles because of improved bumper technology, often causes neck pain to the persons in the stopped vehicle more than the striking vehicle.  The people in the striking vehicle see the impact about to occur and can brace themselves before impact which reduces their injuries.  Whereby, the people in the stopped vehicle, who have no idea an accident is about to occur, only have the body’s natural defenses for protection.

For the driver and passengers waiting at a traffic-light or stop-sign, the movement of the head backward at impact produces most of the neck pain from spinal bone compression.  A thin muscle in the front of the neck, one we can see in the mirror if we widen the mouth and say out-loud “EE”, named the platysma, contracts to prevent traumatic compression of the bones in the spine at impact.  Although it is thin, the muscle spans the bottom of the jaw and runs down to the top of the collar bones, it contracts rapidly and involuntarily to prevent the head from whipping backward excessively when the striking vehicle hits.  This instinctual reaction prevents the head from moving backward so much that it tears the muscles in the front of the neck, but results in the pinching of nerves that exit in the back of the neck.  The compression of the spinal bones results in muscle spasm and pain.

The muscle spasm, immediately, restricts the motion of the neck and decreases the blood supply to the head.  When left untreated for a little as two days, spasm can cause excess repair fibers to accumulate in the muscles resulting in headaches, light-headedness, total-body fatigue and nausea.  More sever accidents can pinch nerves which shoot pain into the shoulder and arm.  After as little as one month of this untreated irritation weakness and muscle atrophy of the arm results.  One can see muscle atrophy, which is the result of chronic nerve irritation to the arm, by comparing the thickness and tone of the muscles between the thumb and index finger, known as the web of the hand, while viewing the back of the hand.

Spasm is when muscles attempt to protect their underlying joints and become tighter than usual.   The adhesions that result from untreated spasm can only be removed with careful manipulation and physical therapy of the muscles followed by stretching done by a qualified practitioner.  Stretching by a doctor, therapist or oneself should NOT be performed until the spasm is relieved, adhesions broken, range-of-motion restored and specific stretching maneuvers demonstrated.

Chiropractic neurology lends itself well to treating such conditions because of all the nerve involvement and we often do.

Read more about this and other related topics this link http://www.drsaracino.com/chiropractic-neurology-health-articles.html which is the “Health Information” link at http://www.DrSaracino.com.

Chiropractic Neck Manipulations ARE Safe

Because of concerns about chiropractic training and the contraindications of spinal manipulation, medical physicians have been reluctant to refer patients to chiropractors. This issue will describe chiropractic, chiropractic neurology, therapies, and contraindications for spinal manipulation, growth of complimentary care and physicians’ call for more information on the science of chiropractic.

Read more about this topic at http://www.DrSaracino.com:

http://www.drsaracino.com/chiropractic-neurology-health-articles.html

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Is Cracking One’s Own Neck and Low Back Safe?

“NO!” As a youngster, you might have been told to, “stop cracking your knuckles, because it makes them big and disfigured!” That advice holds true for those who “crack” their own necks, bones between the shoulder blades and low backs. Excessive manipulation, whether performed by a practitioner or oneself, could lead to several serious conditions:
• Tendons, which hold bones in place, becoming loose or torn as a result of too many quick stretches;
• Ligaments loosing their elasticity;
• Muscles becoming tight, spastic, and painful; and
• Nerves becoming irritated, resulting in numbness, tingling, and weakness.
Here’s why…

Read more about this topic at http://www.DrSaracino.com:

http://www.drsaracino.com/chiropractic-neurology-health-articles.html

I look forward to hearing from you soon.


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