This deeply relaxing, powerful and cleansing treatment is not your typical massage, it’s gentle rhythmical movements stimulate and influence the direction and speed of the lymph through the lymphatic vessels and nodes to great effect.
The lymphatic system moves slowly due to not having a pump, which means it can easily become overloaded, sluggish and congested. The lymph vessels lie just beneath the skin and facilitate the removal of metabolic wastes, excess water, toxins, bacteria, large protein molecules and foreign substances from the tissues.
MLD (manual lymphatic drainage) relaxes the sympathetic nervous system, reduces pain and enhances the activity of the immune system. It is effective in the treatment of a wide variety of problems including oedema (swelling), skin disorders, headaches, sinus congestion, stress, sprains and aches and before and after surgery to remove tissue congestion. It is particularly useful in improving the healing process and reducing recovery time after surgery, post-mastectomy therapy and cosmetic surgery such as liposuction, breast surgery or facial surgery.
MLD (manual lymphatic drainage) is extremely gentle and wonderfully relaxing.
Sasha Ball is one of our wonderful massage therapists and this facebook review sums up just how well Chiropractic and massage complement each other.
‘I’ve been attending this clinic for around a year. I first came with sciatica and now, incredibly, it’s gone. Rachel has a deep insight for healing through her practice. I have regular monthly adjustment and I’m now better than I’ve been for years. I complement this with regular massage therapy from Sasha at the clinic. This practice is unique as it offers a fully holistic treatment plan that lifts, heals and rejuvenates. Thoroughly recommended’.
Back and neck pain is often seen as only an adult problem but new statistics, along with our own experience of treating children and teens at the Peacehaven Chiropractic, suggest this is sadly not the case. One quarter of UK secondary school pupils report that they suffer from regular or daily back and/or neck pain.
One quarter of UK secondary school students suffer from regular or daily back pain
School bag burden has been associated with a ten-fold increased rate of back pain
Back pain was also linked to prolonged sitting (something no student gets away from – now with more sedentary past times, gentle stretches and exercises are paramount on a daily basis, please see links below.
The British Chiropractic Association’s have some good advice on how to make sure your child’s backpack is loaded and carried safely. They also have a series of exercises, from the Straighten Up campaign, designed to keep the spine moving well, appropriate for both children and adults and they also include computer posture tips and breathing exercises. You would think breathing came naturally, and whilst we all do breathe, many of us don’t do it well!
Here’s some fun and kid-friendly stretches we like! Movement is key. Another fabulous set of exercsies can be found on youtube, ChiroMoves designed by a UK Chiropractor. This is also avaliable as an app.
If you have any questions about your childs spine then please do call, remember we also offer a free 15 minute consultation in clinic. Please call 01273 584812 or book an appoinment using our request form. Rachel Hodson is fully accredited to work with children and has further qualifications in this field.
As you can read from my bio, I’ve always been really active physically and the main sport I’ve been playing in my life is basketball. I probably started playing around 20 years ago!
Starting as a kid and when there was not a lot of science behind training there was no stretching and no warm down in most of the sessions and that’s why at around 14 years old (when I was doing a lot of growing) my body became extremely stiff and I started getting episodes of low back pain, these could last up to a month at a time. Is that surprising? Not really!
Basketball is a sport that includes sprinting, jumping and quick changes of direction and everything is on a hard surface too! Plus repetitive motor schemes, if done not correctively can create dysfunctions themselves! That is true for almost every sport sadly!
When did these episodes stop occurring? Of course after I started seeing a chiropractor! I started care at 16 years old and I never looked back after that. After the acute phase of care I got adjusted almost a week for years as I was training daily. Quantity of injuries and sprained ankles reduced a lot and recovery time increased.
Now that the weather is more stable in Brighton I started going to the seafront basketball court to play and I cannot stop noticing people training on sprained ankles or minor injuries. This should be avoided as training a motor skill on top of an injury can create muscular and spinal compensations that maynot be evident in the moment, especially because many players are really young. In these cases the result will be seen in the future when a major injury eventually come and you will be left asking, how did that happen?
I cannot stress enough how prevention with care is the key for a better chance of avoiding injuries and increasing performance naturally. A bad neck or low back can easily start from an ankle sprain that never healed properly! Please ballers, come and get checked!
Ph.D. in Biomechanics Explains Importance of Segmental Motion and Chiropractic
McGill, S. Ph.D. Stability: From Biomechanical Concept to Chiropractic Practice. Journal of Canadian Chiropractic Association. 1999;43 (2)
QUOTE BOARD: “There is evidence that these muscles (intersegmental muscles) are highly rich in muscle spindles (at least four to seven times higher than multifidus). It would seem that these organs are not functioning to produce force given their minimal cross-sectional area but are, rather, position transducers for each lumbar joint enabling the motor control system to control overall lumbar posture and avoid injury.” Conclusion: “Nonetheless it appears that the chance of the motor control error which results in a short and temporary reduction in activation to one of the intersegmental muscles would cause rotation of just a single joint to a point where passive or other tissues become irritated or possible injured.” [This is segmental neuromuscular dysfunction (vertebral subluxation complex/joint dysfunction)]
Without proper segmental motion in your spinal segments the messages from the joint and muscle motion receptors get interrupted making it impossible for your brain to sense joint position and/or muscle length/tension. This “garbage in” creates errors in brain output (garbage out) called motor control errors. Your brain can only properly coordinate joint and muscle position and movement if proper signals from the joints and muscles get sent to the brain. Proper segmental motion is the key component for the delivery of proper joint and muscle signals.
Key Take Home Points:
Without proper segmental motion in your spine the messages between body and brain become diminished and/or distorted. Not only do the tissues become inflamed and begin to degenerate but the brain becomes less able to coordinate movement and motor control errors result which predisposes the tissues to injury. Chiropractic is so effective because it restores segmental motion and thus restores the proper communication between body and brain. This allows for better coordination of movement, the reduction of motor control errors, and less susceptibility to injury. A healthy spine requires proper segmental motion. Chiropractors are the world’s leading experts in detecting and correcting areas of segmental neuromuscular dysfunction and this is why chiropractic is so effective for spinal health.
Having good posture not only helps with keeping you injury-free, it also makes you looks taller and slimmer and gives you more energy! What’s not to love about that?!
Posture defined is the relative position of all of our body parts. Each joint has an optimal position and range of motion. In this position our joints are exposed to the least amount of wear and tear and the most efficient use of energy.
image from https://posemethod.com/pose-vs-posture2/
When we are out of alignment (poor posture) wear and tear and the cost in terms of energy are increased, not only to maintain this posture, but also to make every move. We are therefore more likely to sustain an injury. Poor posture is exactly why so many of us experience musculoskeletal pain – otherwise known as CHRONIC POOR POSTURE.
When do we first start developing our posture:
It all starts before we are even born! Nature is amazing. It is so important for mothers to look after their spinal health and remain active, because it helps their babies core muscles develop and provides them with optimal space for foetal development. At Peacehaven Chiropractic Rachel is experienced working with pregnancy and with children. Chiropractic care can help keep your pelvis aligned and moving eveningly side to side. Your uterus sits in your pelvis.
Babies are born with a set of primitive reflexes; these help them as they pass through the birth canal. Think of them as our original blueprint. As we grown, postural relflexes lay over the top and dampen down our primitive reflexes. These postural reflexes form the framework within all our systems operate effectively. The tranistiion from primitive to posural does not happen at a set time, but is gradual, often both reflexes existing together. The postural reflexes help to shape our spinal health, posture, movement and stability (1).
When babies lay on their fronts, by 6 weeks they should be able to lift their head in line with thier body and by 12 weeks maintain it there for several minutes; this helps the curvature of the neck and determines the development of the muscles that support the head (1).
At approximately 16 weeks we begin to use our arms to push our chest off the floor. eventually raising ourselves up onto our knees and rolling over (6 months) (1), this helps create our low back, lumbar, curve and imorove muscular strength. Crawling is paramount as it helps to develop an even pattern of movement across the pelvis and again improve our core strength, providing support for the lower back. These early stages are very imprortant and if a child misses any one of these steps problems can develop in the future.
Children tend to use their bodies functionally, therefore do not often feel musculoskeletal pain, however once we become a teenager we become more self aware and our posture can suffer. Teenage girls are notorious for standing with rounded shoulders to hide their developing breasts and if tall may stoop to become in line with their peers. Carrying heavy bags, often on one shoulder and spending far too long on computers, phones and tablets is definitely taking its toll!
What determines our posture?
The relative length-tension relationship between muscles is largely responsible for our posture. These muscles are controlled by our brain, via the spinal cord. Joints have 2 sets of muscles on opposite sides, if one side is long and weak, the other will be short and weak (tight). This affects the position of the joint and its full potential movement.
A good example is our hip flexors and bottoms! Many of us sit for long periods in the day, so the hip flexors shorten and the gluteals become weakened. The result, your pelvis pulls forwards resulting in an increased lumbar lordosis (curve) and if one side is tigher than the other we end up with a torsion in the pelvis. The hip joint, knee and ankle therefore are no longer in optimal position and this affects leg range of motion. Without correction this can lead to injury.
Poor posture can also have a knock-on effect on the rest of the body, not just our musculoskeletal system (everything is connected afterall!) If you slouch, your ribcage will drop forwards restricting your diaphragm and therefore your breathing. It also means your stomach is squashed and so can give symptoms of indigestion/reflux. It will restrict blood flow to the organs including the uterus, so painful periods can result and impaired bowel digestion, thus symptoms of IBS.
Circulation and nerve signalling from the brain can also become compressed (especially with a forward head posture) which can result in headaches, migraines and numbness in the legs and arms.
How can I help myself?
We can all do a ceratin amouont of assessment by just looking in the mirror, or if you feel brave have someone take photos of you front, back and side view. Use the guide picture at the top of this article to help yiou. If you just think about stnding and sitting tall you are already halfway there! The more you remind youorself the easier it becomes, new habits take time to form, old one die hard!
Stretching a sterenthening exercises can be very helpful; however specific ones depend on your postural weakness. Most people will benefit from doing a head to toe stretching and movement programme which focuses on getting the whole body active. The Straighten Up UK (SUUK) exercises developed by British Chiropractic Association are a great starting point. We also have free leaflets in clinic that show this routine.
Can exercise make my posture worse?
Some exercises can, yes! Although many people are tols that poor posture is a result of adbominal weakness, doing repeated sit-ups actually strengthens the muscles that cause you to slouch! Your deep abdominals and pelvic floor muscles are much more important to work on, however underused muscles are hrd to wake up! Pilates, initially 1-2-1 classes are super helpful in achieving this.
Most importantly is to focus on how you sit and stand, once you are aware of how to do this well, Yoga and Pilates are great, these focus on your postual stabilising muscles. Any other exercise that challenges your balance such as free weights and stability ball exercises are also great. Of course always discuss with a fitness professional, your doctor or chiropractor before you commence if you have any concerns.
Will I achieve perfect posture?
This is unlikely! You posture has developed over years, however you can always improve it. Our environment and how we use our bodies daily have a huge impact. The important thing is to maintain mobility and be aware of when you are not holding yourself optimally.
1) Goddard, S. Reflexes. Learning and Behaviour; a window into the Child’s Mind. fern Ridge Press, 2002.
2) Liao, M.H. and Drury, C.G., Posture, discomfort and performance in a VDT task. 2000, Ergonomics, 43(3); 345-359.
3) Sauter, S.L., Schleifer, L.M. and Knutson, S.J., Work posture, workstation design and musculoskeletal discomfort in a DT data entry task. 1991, Hum Factors, 33(2); 151-167.
That time of year is just around the corner. The daffodils will be in full bloom before we know it and many of us will be out in the garden weeding, pruning and potting getting ready for the summer ahead. After a period of relative inactivity this is the time that many of us overdo it and end up with various springtime niggles. We give all our attention to the garden and none to our own bodies. Remember you only have 1 body, it’s the only place you get to live!
Gardening isn’t exactly an extreme sport, but because of that we are less mindful about what we are doing.
Think about your posture when you are out there digging in the wilderness! The same rules that apply to lifting also apply in the garden. Keep you back upright, no stooping and if you do need to pick something up, no twisting, turn your whole body towards it, including your feet! Bend from your hips, not your waist.
If you are unfortunate to suffer with hay fever, aka allergic rhinitis, you will definitely know when spring has sprung. Dry itchy eyes, runny nose and blocked sinuses? Although the body of conclusive research is minimal for treating hay fever with alternative therapies, some people do have results with Acupuncture and Cranial therapies. These therapies tend to look at the overall health of the individual and take into account not just the current situation, but factors that maybe predisposing someone to the problem. Generally it it thought that commencing treatment before it (if seasonal) begins, can help reduce the severity of the symptoms, so now is the time to start! If you would like to be referred to someone local, call, we would be happy to point you in the right direction.
Aching and stiff from spring cleaning, massage can help, whether it is a deep tissue massage, Thai massage or a movement practice such as Thai Chi or yoga. Overdone the gardening, pulled something, be honest, were you mindful about your posture? Chiropractic care could be what you need.
Shoulder pain can have a number of different causes, ranging from an injury like a car accident, to a chronic problem like arthritis. Patients who experience shoulder pain may be surprised by the intensity and duration of the pain. The shoulder area is so essential for completing daily activities that it makes sense that the shoulder pain injury should be taken seriously and treated to avoid worsening your condition.
Some signs that shoulder pain needs immediate attention may include a decreased ability to hold objects, decreased functioning of the arm, shoulder pain that persists even while at rest, shoulder pain that lasts more than a day or two, and unusual twinges or aches in the shoulder area.
Chiropractic care can be an extremely effective treatment for shoulder pain regardless of its cause. A chiropractor will often begin with an examination of the patient’s neck area since shoulder pain can frequently be the result of “referred” pain from the neck. Whether the shoulder pain is connected to the neck or is limited to the lower part of the shoulder, it can generally be treated with non-invasive methods of natural healing such as chiropractic care.
Care for an injured shoulder may include application of heat, application of ice packs, gentle manipulation from the chiropractor to help the shoulder return to its original state of functionality, and gentle stretching and strengthening exercises that the patient can perform at home.
Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a malady that affects 2-3% of the population. Often the main indicator is initial pain in the joint and decreased mobility. Frozen shoulder can affect people of any age from children to adulthood, but is most commonly diagnosed in people ranging from 40 – 70 years of age, predominantly women.
The shoulder joint itself is called a ball and socket joint. Ligaments, tendons and muscles work together to provide support, strength and the wide range of motion that enables us to move our arms and hands in a variety of positions in order to complete tasks. All the functions of the shoulder can be compromised by underlying inflammatory diseases and misuse. The specific causes of frozen shoulder perplex are varied and largely still unknown, but onset begins with initial pain, followed by restriction in mobility and finally recovery.
Frozen shoulder can often be referred to as insidious in nature. The symptoms and development of the disorder are slow and can take up to a year or two to set in. Often patients will experience pain that will increase over time. As chemical changes take place in the shoulder joint, thick strands of tissue called adhesions form and begin to restrict mobility. The lubricating synovial capsule in the shoulder joint thickens and provides less lubrication. By the time the sufferer begins to notice a significant issue in lack of mobility, the disorder has set in and requires treatment.
The good news is that although the causes of frozen shoulder are varied, treatment is straight forward and the disorder can be resolved. Often clinicians, including our experienced and caring staff, can provide the correct manipulation and physiotherapy to help you regain mobility and resolve the disorder. Contact our office so we can address your condition immediately.
Causes of Frozen Shoulder
Adhesive capsulitis (Frozen Shoulder) can be attributed to misuse and injury, myocardial infarction, upper torso surgery, such as arm and shoulder surgery or mastectomy, and even lack of use. When the shoulder joint goes unused and remains in the same position for long periods of time, such as when a patient is placed in a sling or unable to use their arm, the joint tightens and mobility is decreased. An autoimmune response in the area may cause the joint to stiffen and restrict the joint causing the initial pain. When the initial pain is not addressed, the inflammatory nature of the disorder will progress and adhesions form in the joint further restricting mobility and increasing the level of pain.
Frozen Shoulder Due to Systemic Disorders
A large population of patients who suffer from systemic diseases may be more likely to develop frozen shoulder. These systemic diseases include those who suffer from thyroid disorders such as hyperthyroid and hypothyroid, both overactive and underactive thyroid function. Other diseases include diabetes, cardiovascular disease, tuberculosis and Parkinson’s Disease. Frozen shoulder treatment related to these diseases is paramount and the importance of early diagnosis followed by early manipulation and treatment are necessary, because more drastic treatments are often times not an option. Our chiropractic staff are experts in diagnosing and treating the issue to help resolve your pain and regain your range of motion, so you may return to a normal routine.
Frozen Shoulder in Surgical Patients
Patients who have recently gone through shoulder surgery such as rotator cuff repair or repair to the labrum, one of the many tendons in the shoulder, may experience frozen shoulder. Patients who have had recent mastectomy or cardiovascular surgery are at risk, as well. The reason they are more susceptible to the disorder is lack of use of the shoulder. When the shoulder remains in the same position for a prolonged period of time, the joint stiffens and the pain sets in.
Once the surgical site heals sufficiently, neuro-muscular-skeletal rehabilitation and chiropractic manipulation are highly recommended to help return range of motion to the joint and reduce pain. Our office can develop a program for you that will reduce the pain and increase the range of motion over a healthy period so you can return to a normal schedule in you life.
Chiropractic Treatment of Frozen Shoulder
Chiropractic therapy for frozen shoulder can produce the results you need and resolve your frozen shoulder. Our staff will evaluate your baseline range of motion and pain level to develop a plan tailored to you. In-office neuro-muscular-skeletal rehabilitation coupled with exercise you may do at home will address and increase your range of motion. It will also build the muscle to prevent muscular atrophy or the shrinkage of important muscles in the shoulder. Coupled with treatment for inflammation in the joint space, patients can see improvement over a period of time and resolution of the disorder.
Hard work is the key. Failure to work on stretching in the office as well as at home can delay the recovery process. Trust our staff to direct you along the path to recovery.
Osteoarthritis in the knee and hip areas can be a very painful injury, and one that is often a chronic condition if left untreated. Chiropractic care for hip osteoarthritis and knee osteoarthritis can be very helpful for patients who have been unable to find relief from the pain in any other way.
Signs of hip osteoarthritis and knee osteoarthritis include an increasing level of pain in the hip area that may extend into the groin area, pain shooting down the thighs, and pain in the knee joints. It is not uncommon for the knees to be the first place the pain is felt, and some patients may not notice the hip pain until later. The pain often increases when the weather is colder, or when the patient is engaged in physical activity like jogging or walking.
Chiropractors use very gentle spinal adjustments to place the spinal column in proper alignment, which has a positive effect on the hip joints that are connected to the spine. While hip and knee osteoarthritis is not curable at this time, it is very much manageable with the help of chiropractic care.
Knee osteoarthritis can also be managed very effectively with the help of chiropractic care. The treatments for both knee and hip osteoarthritis may be similar, and can include stretching, massage, gentle manipulation of any painful joints, and the use of ultrasound for healing.
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common explanations of heel pain. It is caused by inflammation to the thick band that connects the toes to the heel bone, called the plantar fascia, which runs across the bottom of your foot. The condition is most commonly seen in runners, pregnant women, overweight people, and individuals who wear inadequately supporting shoes. Plantar fasciitis typically affects people between the ages of 40 and 70.
Plantar fasciitis commonly causes a stabbing pain in the heel of the foot, which is worse during the first few steps of the day after awakening. As you continue to walk on the affected foot, the pain gradually lessens. Usually, only one foot is affected, but it can occur in both feet simultaneously.
To diagnose plantar fasciitis, your doctor will physically examine your foot by testing your reflexes, balance, coordination, muscle strength, and muscle tone. Your doctor may also advise a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or X-ray to rule out other others sources of your pain, such as a pinched nerve, stress fracture, or bone spur.
Treatment for plantar fasciitis includes chiropractic care, medication, physical therapy, shock wave therapy, or surgery.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen and naproxen are used to treat the inflammation and pain of plantar fasciitis, but they won’t cure the condition. Corticosteroids can also be used to ease pain and reduce inflammation. Corticosteroids are applied either as a topical solution in conjunction with a non-painful electric current or through injections to the affected area.
Stretching exercises for the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia are recommend to relieve pain and aid in the healing process. Sometimes application of athletic tape is recommended. In moderate or severe cases of plantar fasciitis, your doctor may recommend you wearing a night splint, which will stretch the arch of your foot and calf while you sleep. This helps to lengthen the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia for symptom relief. Depending on the severity of your plantar fasciitis, your physician may prescribe a store-bought orthotic (arch support) or custom-fitted orthotic to help distribute your foot pressure more evenly.
Surgery and Other Procedures
When more conservative methods have failed to reduce plantar fasciitis pain, your doctor may suggest extracorporeal shock wave therapy, which is used to treat chronic plantar fasciitis. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy uses sound waves to stimulate healing, but may cause bruises, numbness, tingling, swelling, and pain. When all else fails, surgery may be recommended to detach the plantar fascia from the heel bone. Few people need surgery to treat the condition.
Stretching your plantar fasciitis is something you can do at home to relieve pain and speed healing. Ice massage performed three to four times per day in 15 to 20 minute intervals is also something you can do to reduce inflammation and pain. Placing arch supports in your shoes absorbs shock and takes pressure off the plantar fascia.