Our Back to School Health Checklist

back to school

Waverley Chiropractic Centre is excited to help you and your children get ready for going back to school.

Every January millions of children, including some of our very own patients, go back to school. While schools are great places for children to learn and develop both mentally and socially, it is important for kids to remember their health and wellbeing in the classroom all year round.

While most parents and children have a checklist of stationery and supplies for starting the school year, we are providing our patients with a ‘Back to School Health Checklist.’ The checklist, developed as part of the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA) Back to School Campaign, is a great way to remind kids of the importance of building healthy habits in school.

They are simple to incorporate and easily fit into a child’s everyday routine. For instance, packing a healthy lunch filled with lots of fruit and veggies, getting 60 minutes of daily physical activity and wearing the backpack correctly by carrying it with both straps.

The Health Checklist also reminds kids to reduce their recreational screen time, sit correctly in the classroom and consider chiropractic care.

Kids don’t often think about the impact that common activities like sitting in a classroom, carrying a heavy bag and excessive screen time can have on their overall health and wellbeing.

Pick up your complimentary Back to School Health Checklist from us today, or if you are concerned about your child’s spine or any other back to school related activities, book an appointment with us via Waverley Chiropractic Centre online booking site.

For more information on the ACA’s Back to School, visit backtoschool.org.au

Give your Child’s Back a Good Pack

At Waverley Chiropractic the health of your child’s spine is important. As children return to school, it is important that parents of school aged children look at the quality and fit of their child’s backpack, as heavy, incorrectly fitted and badly packed school backpacks can lead to spinal health problems as your child grows.

Spinal health is crucial at any age and items like heavy backpacks may cause strain and discomfort to the spine. I believe spinal pain can be attributed to a number of factors, and heavy and incorrectly worn bags may also lead to poor posture, slouching and uneven hips.

The relationship between spinal health and carrying a heavy backpack may also depend on additional aspects such as your child’s age and weight. 


If you’re worried about your child’s backpack weight, here are a few lifestyle and backpack modification tips:

What to look for in a backpack: 

  1. Make sure the backpack is the right size for your child, no wider than their chest and below the
    hollow of their back
  2. A moulded frame on the back, that when adjusted fits their spine.
  3. A bag made from a light weight material like canvas, with two padded straps
  4. Adjustable waist and sternum straps
  5. Separate compartments that allow for easy packing and weight distribution

How to carry the backpack in a spine safe way:

  1. Ensure that the weight of the backpack is no more than 10% of your child’s weight when packed.[1] Only pack essentials to lessen the load, perhaps use school lockers if available.
  2. Pack the heaviest items closest to the spine and make sure all zippers are done up all the way.
  3. Secure the sternum and waist straps (they’re there for a reason)
  4. Always wear both straps. Tell the kids it’s not cool to ‘one-strap it’ anymore.
  5. Reduce the time spent wearing the backpack to no more than 30 minutes at any one time.

Another tip is to ensure your child is undertaking 60 minutes of moderate physical activity every day, as a part of correct spinal care.


[1] Chen YL, Mu YC. Effects of backpack load and position on body strains in male schoolchildren while walking. PLoS One. 2018;13(3):e0193648. Published 2018 Mar 21. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0193648

Waverley Chiropractic Giving Back this Christmas

Waverley Chiropractic Centre participated in ‘Giving Back’ Week from 10 – 16 December, collecting a large number of toys and food items, valued at over $1000, benefiting families doing it tough this Christmas.

Mt Waverley chiropractor

 

Joining chiropractors from the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA) in hosting ‘Giving Back’ Week, local chiropractor Dr Shaun Beovich asked patients to donate new, unwrapped toys, non-perishable food items or cash donations to the less fortunate in the community, in lieu of payment on Friday 14th December.

The gifts collected were donated to the Waverley Salvation Army in time for Christmas to children and families in the local area, going through difficult times this festive season.

Dr Beovich would like to thank all those who donated in any manner, whether big or small. Your generosity has been felt by the community and has gone a long way in helping families this Christmas.

A community service from Waverley Chiropractic Centre.

Fibromyalgia Relief – Case Study

Fibromyalgia Case Study shows improvement in symptoms, cervical alignments and quality of life

Fibromyalgia is widely viewed as a pain syndrome with an unknown cause. Sufferers will tell you a common truth though: it can be debilitating, distressing, and it’s very, very real. Sadly, the issue of how to treat this pain syndrome is no more straight-forward than finding its cause. Cognitive behavioural therapy, low-dose anti-depressants and mild exercise are often prescribed but “there is no permanent change associated with this form of treatment [1].” This often leaves sufferers feeling frustrated at the apparent permanence of their predicament.

Mount Waverley chiropractor Dr Shaun Beovich shares a case study found on the Australian Spinal Research Foundation Blog. For specific advice and care, family chiropractor Dr Shaun Beovich is experienced in fibromyalgia. Waverley Chiropractic Centre services the Mt Waverley, Glen Waverley, Burwood, Chadstone, Clayton, Ashwood and surrounding areas. Book online here or call 9581 2624.

Case Reports Offer Strong Indications that Chiropractic Care May Help

A recent case study and literature review posted in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation reveals some interesting observations on the matter. It reported on the structural and symptomatic improvements in a 40-year-old female who had suffered with the disorder for 8 years.

Hers is a demographic group that is no stranger to this disorder. It is said to affect between 2-5% of the population of the developed world. Interestingly, the vast majority of these sufferers are young to middle-aged women [2]. The symptoms of this diagnostic enigma include significant fatigue, musculoskeletal pain, cognitive disturbances and tenderness along with many other potential symptoms. Due to the fatigue elements of the disorder, many sufferers find themselves wearing a diagnostic label of ‘chronic fatigue syndrome’ though this fails to explain all their symptoms.

In the case study the patient’s symptoms included widespread musculoskeletal pain, fatigue, depression and headaches. The researchers used an initial SF 36 questionnaire to measure health-related quality of life, as well as checking her for structural misalignments or subluxations. The latter revealed an anterior head translation, left lateral head flexion, and a lateral cervical translation of 32.7mm when the ideal is 0mm. Significant segmental misalignments were noted at C3-C4, C4-C5 and C5-C6.

On her self-reported quality of life questionnaire (the SF 36), the patient’s highest scores were in the areas of role limitations due to emotional problems or physical health (50.9 and 47 respectively). When it came to general health, energy/fatigue, pain and physical functioning, she reported scores as low as 16.6, 3, 0 and 0 respectively. This illustrates the degree to which this disorder had impacted her life.

She received 44 sessions of chiropractic care over the course of 5 months using a combination of mirror image exercises, adjustments and traction.

Following the intervention, the patient’s films revealed significant improvements in subluxations. Her 32.7mm lateral cervical translation had dropped to 15.4mm and significant improvements were noted from C3-C6, restoring a lordosis to a spinal region in which she previously suffered kyphosis.

The interesting part of the case report was the quality of life scores post-intervention. The patient’s energy score had risen from 16.6 to 35. Her general health score lifted from 3 to 38. Pain and physical function rose from 0 to 38 and 36.7 respectively.

Fedorchuk et al point out that there are a number of case reports that look at fibromyalgia and chiropractic care. Their literature review, written into the case report, included details of ten other studies on the topic. In all instances, chiropractic care was employed as part of the care, and improvements were noted.

RCT Shows Upper Cervical Manipulative Therapy is Beneficial

Fedorchuk’s work, and the case reports that fed into the literature review, jog the memory back to a piece of work that may have escaped the eyes of many a chiropractor. Emerging from Cairo University and appearing in the journal Rheumatology International, the randomized controlled trial looked at the addition of upper cervical manipulative therapy to a multimodal program in treatment of fibromyalgia [3].

The study, authored by researchers Ibrahim Moustafa and Aliaa Diab, took a sample of 120 people with fibromyalgia and definite C1-2 joint dysfunction. These were randomly assigned to either a control group or an experimental group. Both groups benefited from a multimodal program involving exercise, education and cognitive behavioural therapy, whilst the experimental group also received upper cervical manipulative therapy.

The education aspect of the program included information about “typical symptoms, the usual course, medical conditions, potential causes of the illness, the influence of psychosocial factors on pain, current pharmacologic and non-pharmacological treatments, the benefits of regular exercise, and the typical barriers to behavioural change [3].” There were 12 sessions, delivered once a week in 2-hour blocks over the course of the intervention period. The same was true for the cognitive behavioural therapy aspect of the study, which concentrated on a combination of components including “educational, physical, cognitive and behavioural elements [3].” The exercise component of the program centred on a variety of relaxation techniques and stretches. All participants in the study took part in these three aspects.

The upper cervical manipulative therapy administered to the experimental group came in the form of a HVLA thrust described below:

“With the patient in the supine position, the therapist contacted the left posterior arch of the atlas with the lateral aspect of the proximal phalanx of the left second finger using a “cradle hold.” To localize the forces to the left C1-2 articulation, the secondary levers of extension, posterior– anterior shift, ipsilateral side-bend, and contralateral side- shift were used. While maintaining the secondary levers, the therapist applied a single HVLA thrust manipulation to the left atlantoaxial joint using the combined thrusting primary levers of right rotation in an arc toward the under- side eye and translation toward the table. This process was repeated using the same procedure but directed to the right C1-2 articulation.”

Additionally, the experimental group underwent low-velocity cervical joint mobilization techniques as described in Maitland [5].

The researchers used a number of outcome measures to report on baseline data and results. Outcome measures were taken after the 12-week intervention, and at 6 months and 1 year post-intervention respectively. Among the outcome measures were:

  • A fibromyalgia impact questionnaire
  • Rasterstereographic posture analysis
  • A pain catastrophizing scale
  • Algometric score
  • Sleep quality
  • The Beck Anxiety Inventory
  • The Beck Depression Inventory

This is where it gets interesting: the results didn’t differ significantly between groups at the 12-week mark. In fact, the fibromyalgia management outcomes indicated that both of the programs were equally successfulBoth groups saw some level of improvement in their symptoms, and this supported a meta-analysis showing that multicomponent treatment was effective for improving key symptoms of fibromyalgia.

However, at the one-year follow-up from this, there were “statistically significant changes that indicated that the FMS management outcomes of the experimental group exhibited continued improvement and that the control subjects’ scores regressed back toward the baseline values (i.e., the scores worsened) [3].”

The study’s authors went on to remark that, “the normalization of the afferent input of the upper cervical spine seems to offer an explanation for these one-year improved outcomes in the experimental group.” There are a number of possible explanations for the difference witnessed at the one-year mark. Among them is the possibility that the long-term effects of poor or flexed posture, or continuous asymmetrical loading and muscle imbalance may have a role – a hypothesis supported by previous research [7, cited in 3].

For a randomised controlled trial, the sample size may appear small. Given 20 of 120 people dropped out of the one-year follow up, this could appear more limiting. However, the authors indicated that this still gave them enough data for a statistically relevant change. Though not without its limitations, the results of the Cairo [fibromyalgia] study left its authors confident enough to state their belief that the results of the study should be used to introduce new guidelines for the treatment of fibromyalgia.

Although the intervention in the study was not directed specifically at subluxations, it does demonstrate the importance of a properly functioning nervous system.

How this changes the game

Up until the publication of the Cairo study, the most comprehensive literature on the matter was possibly the systemic review by Schneider et al, which was published in 2009. The lack of a comprehensive RCT left the authors of that study with the following evidence for the management of fibromyalgia: “Strong evidence supports aerobic exercise and cognitive behavioural therapy. Moderate evidence supports massage, muscle strength training, acupuncture, and spa therapy (balneotherapy). Limited evidence supports spinal manipulation, movement/body awareness, vitamins, herbs, and dietary modification [5].”

Later on, in 2011, another systemic review looked at complementary and alternative medicine in the treatment of fibromyalgia. Again, the lack of larger clinical trials left them with little evidence for spinal manipulation and other therapies like massage [6].

Moustafa and Diab’s work offers us the reliability of a clinical trial and, for the first time, statistically significant indications that the addition of upper cervical manipulative therapy can have a role. Although as with all things research-related cautious optimism is the order of the day, this study does offer a unique and valuable contribution to the evidence surrounding this condition.  We look forward to seeing further research of the impact of the subluxation on the health of those with fibromyalgia.

Read the full article at https://spinalresearch.com.au/fibromyalgia-case-study-shows-improvement-symptoms-cervical-alignments-quality-life/

References:

[1] Fedorchuk, C, Lightstone, D, Moser, J (2017), “Improvements in Symptoms, Cervical Alignment and Quality of Life in a 40-Year-Old Female with Fibromyalgia Following Chiropractic BioPhysics® Technigue: A Case Study and Selective Review of Literature,” Annals of Vertebral Subluxation

[2] Gumer, E, Littlejohn, G (2013), “Diagnostic Challenges, Fibromyalgia’ Australian Family Physician, Volume 42, No. 10, October 2013, pp 690-694, http://www.racgp.org.au/afp/2013/october/fibromylagia/

[3] Moustafa I, Diab A (2015), “The addition of upper cervical manipulative therapy in the treatment of patients with fibromyalgia: a randomized controlled trial,” Journal Rheumatology International,  https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00296-015-3248-7

[4] Maitland GD, Hengeveld E, Banks K et al (2000) Maitland’s vertebral manipulation, 6th edn. Butterworth, London

[5] Schneider M, Vernon H, Ko G, Lawson G and Perera, J (2009), “Chiropractic management of fibromyalgia syndrome: a systematic review of the literature,” JMPT Vol 32, Issue 1, January 2009, pp. 25-40, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmpt.2008.08.012

[6] Terhost L, Schneider M, Kim K Goozdich L and Stilley C (2011), “Complementary and Alternative Medicine in the Treatment of Pain in Fibromyalgia: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials,” JMPT Vol 34, Issue 7, September 2011, pp. 483-496, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0161475411000959

[7] Mueller A, Hartmann M, Eich W (2000) Inanspruchnahme medizinischer Versorgungsleistungen. Untersuchung bei Patienten mit Fibromyalgiesyndrom (FMS) [Health care utiliza- tion in patients with bromyalgia syndrome (FMS)]. Schmerz 14:77–83 (German)

Fast Pain Relief

We all want pain relief as soon as possible. Whether it’s back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches or arm and leg pain. No one likes being in pain. It interferes with our daily activities, our work, our play and can be quite debilitating. As your local family chiropractor at Waverley Chiropractic Centre I want to get you out of pain as quick as possible.

fast-pain-relief-mt-waverley-chiropractor

24 years of chiropractic experience tells me though that the body often needs time to heal. We live in a fast paced society where we expect quick turnarounds in most things. We don’t like waiting. Unfortunately the body is one thing that can’t be rushed. Yes you can cover up the symptoms but true healing, true health takes time. The longer a problem has been there, the older you are, previous trauma, how fit you are, how much you sit, how stressed you are etc may all impact on the time taken to heal, especially when it comes to your spine.

So can I strongly recommend we work together. It starts with having realistic expectations on the time it takes to recover from your back or neck pain. Follow the advice given, do your stretches, ice/heat etc, get enough rest/sleep, keep moving as much as possible and keep your chiropractic appointments. Allow time for your body to recover, to heal. And as we get you out of pain we want to move towards a state of wellness. Where your spine, and in particular your nervous system is functioning to its peak.

If you are in pain now then give chiropractic a try. Family chiropractor Dr Shaun Beovich is experienced in dealing with many of your aches and pains. Waverley Chiropractic Centre services the Mt Waverley, Glen Waverley, Burwood, Chadstone, Clayton, Ashwood and surrounding areas. Book online here or call 9581 2624.

Low back pain and maintenance care

Low back pain and maintenance care

Many people suffering from low back pain see their chiropractor for what we call maintenance care or wellness care. These are periodic check-ups which help to maintain a good functioning spine. In other words getting an adjustment before you feel pain rather waiting for the symptoms to arrive. Brand new research backs up maintenance care as effective in reducing discomfort for people suffering from low back pain.

Effectiveness of chiropractic maintenance care versus symptom-guided treatment for recurrent and persistent low back pain—A pragmatic randomized controlled trial

For individuals with recurrent or persistent non-specific low back pain (LBP), exercise and exercise combined with education have been shown to be effective in preventing new episodes or in reducing the impact of the condition. Chiropractors have traditionally used Maintenance Care (MC), as secondary and tertiary prevention strategies. The aim of this trial was to investigate the effectiveness of MC on pain trajectories for patients with recurrent or persistent LBP.

The authors conclude that MC was more effective than symptom-guided treatment in reducing the total number of days over 52 weeks with bothersome non-specific LBP but it resulted in a higher number of treatments. For selected patients with recurrent or persistent non-specific LBP who respond well to an initial course of chiropractic care, MC should be considered an option for tertiary prevention.

To read the full article click here.

If you are suffering from low back pain then Waverley Chiropractic Centre can tailor a care plan specifically for you to help alleviate your discomfort. Situated in Mt Waverley and servicing the Mount Waverley, Glen Waverley, Ashwood, Ashburton, Burwood and Clayton areas. Book online easily here or phone 9581 2624.

Effective Headache Treatment

Tension headaches due to poor posture and stress effect over 20% of the community. Dr Shaun from Waverley Chiropractic Centre says that the latest research shows how chiropractic adjustments can make a positive impact on these headaches and the patients’ quality of life.

Relationship of the neck and headaches
The trigeminocervical nucleus is a region of the upper cervical spinal cord where sensory nerve fibers in the descending tract of the trigeminal nerve (trigeminal nucleus caudalis) are believed to interact with sensory fibers from the upper cervical roots. This functional convergence of upper cervical and trigeminal sensory pathways allows the bidirectional referral of painful sensations between the neck and trigeminal sensory receptive fields of the face and head. A functional convergence of sensorimotor fibers in the spinal accessory nerve (CN XI) and upper cervical nerve roots ultimately converge with the descending tract of the trigeminal nerve and might also be responsible for the referral of cervical pain to the head.

2 studies looking at Tension Type Headaches (TTH)

1. Espí-López GV, Rodríguez-Blanco C, Oliva-Pascual-Vaca A, Molina-Martínez F, Falla D. Do manual therapy techniques have a positive effect on quality of life in people with tension-type headache? A randomized controlled trial. Eur J Phys Rehabil Med. 2016 Aug;52(4):447-56. Epub 2016 Feb 29. PubMed PMID: 26928164.

AIM:
To assess the quality of life of patients suffering from TTH treated for 4 weeks with different manual therapy techniques.
POPULATION:
Seventy-six (62 women) patients aged between 18 and 65 years (age: 39.9±10.9) with either episodic or chronic TTH.
METHODS:
Patients were divided into four groups: suboccipital inhibitory pressure; suboccipital spinal manipulation; a combination of the two treatments; control. Quality of life was assessed using the SF-12 questionnaire (considering both the overall score and the different dimensions) at the beginning and end of treatment, and after a one month follow-up.
CONCLUSIONS:
All three treatments were effective at changing different dimensions of quality of life, but the combined treatment showed the most change. The results support the effectiveness of treatments applied to the suboccipital region for patients with TTH.
CLINICAL REHABILITATION IMPACT:
Manual therapy techniques applied to the suboccipital region, for as little as four weeks, offered a positive improvement in some aspects of quality of life of patient’s suffering with TTH.

2. Espí-López GV, Zurriaga-Llorens R, Monzani L, Falla D. The effect of
manipulation plus massage therapy versus massage therapy alone in people with tension-type headache. A randomized controlled clinical trial. Eur J Phys Rehabil Med. 2016 Oct;52(5):606-617. Epub 2016 Mar 18. PubMed PMID: 26989818.

BACKGROUND:
Manipulative techniques have shown promising results for relief of tension-type headache (TTH), however prior studies either lacked a control group, or suffered from poor methodological quality. The aim of this study was to compare the effect of spinal manipulation combined with massage versus massage alone on range of motion of the cervical spine, headache frequency, intensity and disability in patients with TTH.
POPULATION:
We enrolled 105 subjects with TTH.
METHODS:
Participants were divided into two groups: 1) manipulation and massage; 2) massage only (control). Four treatment sessions were applied over four weeks. The Headache Disability Inventory (HDI) and range of upper cervical and cervical motion were evaluated at baseline, immediately after the intervention and at a follow-up, 8 weeks after completing the intervention.
RESULTS:
Both groups demonstrated a large (ƒ=1.22) improvement on their HDI scores. Those that received manipulation reported a medium-sized reduction (ƒ=0.33) in headache frequency across all data points (P<0.05) compared to the control group.
CONCLUSIONS:
These findings support the benefit of treating TTH with either massage or massage combined with a manipulative technique. However, the addition of manipulative technique was more effective for increasing range of motion of the upper cervical spine and for reducing the impact of headache.
CLINICAL REHABILITATION IMPACT:
Although massage provided relief of headache in TTH sufferers, when combined with cervical manipulation, there was a stronger effect on range of upper cervical spine motion.

Get Moving to Keep Young

Sitting too long is no good. And exercise is good for us. We all know this and it’s something that Dr Shaun from Waverley Chiropractic Centre explains to every patient, old or young. New research from Brigham Young University is telling us exactly how much exercise impacts the aging process on a cellular level. Now that’s good to know!

It all comes down to tiny proteins called telomeres. Theses are the end bits of our chromosomes. “Each time a cell replicates, we lose a tiny bit of the endcaps. Therefore, the older we get, the shorter our telomeres [1].”

The study, lead by exercise science professor Larry Tucker, found that people who maintained consistently high levels of physical activity had significantly longer telomeres than those who were sedentary or even moderately active. At the extreme end of the comparison (i.e. Those with very high levels of physical activity vs. those who were sedentary) this amounted to 9 years difference in telomere length [2].  Between those who were highly active and those who were moderately so, the difference was a lesser but still hefty 7 years.

“Just because you’re 40, doesn’t mean you’re 40 years old biologically,” Tucker said. “We all know people that seem younger than their actual age. The more physically active we are, the less biological aging takes place in our bodies [1].”

What kind of activity? The study used benchmarks of 30 minutes jogging for women, and 40 minutes jogging for men, five days a week [1, 2].  Although the exact mechanism for the preservation of telomeres has not yet been pinpointed, Tucker speculated it could be tied to inflammation and oxidative stress.

“Previous studies have shown telomere length is closely related to those two factors and it is known that exercise can suppress inflammation and oxidative stress over time.

“We know that regular physical activity helps to reduce mortality and prolong life, and now we know part of that advantage may be due to the preservation of telomeres,” Tucker said. [1]”

The study is the second published this year that linked telomere length with physical activity levels. Researchers at the University of California (San Diego) School of Medicine looked at elderly women who sit for more than 10 hours a day [3]. They found these women to have cells that were “biologically older by eight years compared to women who are less sedentary [3].”

“Our study found cells age faster with a sedentary lifestyle. Chronological age doesn’t always match biological age,” said Aladdin Shadyab, PhD, lead author of the study with the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UC San Diego School of Medicine [3].”

Their benchmark for physical activity varied somewhat from that used by Tucker and his colleagues. Shadyab et al used 40 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per day as their research parameter.

The study looked at nearly 1,500 women aged between 64 and 95, as part of a larger longitudinal study looking at determinants of chronic disease in postmenopausal women.

“We found that women who sat longer did not have shorter telomere length if they exercised for at least 30 minutes a day, the national recommended guideline,” said Shadyab. “Discussions about the benefits of exercise should start when we are young, and physical activity should continue to be part of our daily lives as we get older, even at 80 years old.”

So the answer for youth is very simple: get moving every day! It may keep you nearly a decade younger than your biological age, even on a cellular level.

References:

[1] “High level of exercise linked to nine years of less aging at the cellular level,” Medical Express, https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-05-high-linked-years-aging-cellular.htmlretrieved May 15, 2017

[2] Tucker L (2017), “Physical activity and telomere length in U.S. men and women: An NHANES investigation,” Preventive Medicine (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2017.04.027

[3] “Too much sitting, too little exercise may accelerate biological aging: study,” Medical Express, https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-01-biological-aging.html retrieved May 15, 2017

Chronic Back Pain? Help is at Hand.

As part of Spinal Health Week 2017 (22-28 May), chiropractors are raising awareness of chronic back pain and encouraging Australians to seek help.

Spinal Health Week is a health initiative of the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia and as part of this year’s campaign, Dr Beovich from Waverley Chiropractic Centre is encouraging Glen Waverley residents to seek help for chronic back pain.

Chronic back pain is a national issue. One in six Australians suffer from the physical and psychological effects of chronic back problems – that’s an estimated 3.7 million people suffering.

“The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare defines chronic back pain as a health condition that lasts for three months or longer” says Dr Beovich.

A sedentary lifestyle and poor posture are risk factors for chronic back pain. The good news is it’s never too late to improve spinal health.

“Simple measures such as incorporating walking into your daily routine can improve chronic back pain symptoms. Walking keeps the spine active and mobile. Improving posture can also help to relieve strain on the spine and improve circulation.” Dr Beovich said.

Chiropractic care focuses on the relationship between the spine and nervous system without the use of surgery or drugs. Australian chiropractors are five-year university trained healthcare professionals, regulated by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency, and must complete mandatory continuing professional development.

For chronic back problems, chiropractors use a variety of treatments such as spinal manipulation or manual therapies. Working with other healthcare providers where needed, chiropractors also offer advice on self-management through exercise and lifestyle changes.

To promote Spinal Health Week, Waverley Chiropractic Centre is offering free digital posture checks.

Visit spinalhealthweek.com.au to learn more about chronic back pain and chiropractic care.

Sciatica Treatment in Glen Waverley

Here at Waverley Chiropractic Centre in Glen Waverley, we often see patients with sciatica. It’s a painful condition which may be present with or without back pain.

Sciatica is the Latin word for “Pain down the back of the leg” and is usually caused by irritation to the sciatic nerve in the lower back.

sciatica waverley chiropracticThe sciatic nerve runs from the lower back down through the buttocks and along the back of each leg. Sciatica is pain along this nerve and is a relatively common form of back pain and is usually caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve from a herniated or bulging disc.

The pain from sciatica can be anything from infrequent and irritating to severe and debilitating. Usually, it affects only one side, the pain radiating through the buttock and down the leg and is often associated with a constant pain on one side of the buttocks, pain in the leg and/or buttock that may be worse when sitting , burning or tingling down the leg, weakness, numbness or difficulty moving the leg or foot or a shooting pain that makes it difficult to stand up.

While sciatica can be extremely painful and uncomfortable, it is rare that permanent nerve damage (tissue damage) results. Most pain is due to inflammation and will improve within a period of time. Nerve pain is caused by a combination of pressure and inflammation on the nerve root, and treatment is centred on relieving both of these conditions.

Typically, sciatica is made worse by bending, lifting, sneezing and coughing.

Sciatica is a common problem for manual workers, sedentary office workers and is particularly prevalent during pregnancy.

Chiropractic Treatment main objectives are

  • reduce pain
  • restore movement
  • strengthen weakened muscles
  • reduce tension

Causes of Sciatica

The sciatic nerve is the main nerve in the leg and the largest in the body. It runs from the base of the spine, along the back of the thigh to the knee, where it divides into branches.

Sciatic pain is usually caused by compression of this nerve root at the point where it leaves the spine. Damage to the nerve can also cause pain.

In young and early middle-aged adults, the most common cause of sciatica is a prolapsed intervertebral disc in the lumbosacral area of the lower back.

In older people, changes in the spine due to conditions such as osteoarthritis may be responsible either by causing localised pressure on the nerve or by narrowing of the spinal canal – called spinal stenosis.

Other bone disease or local injury may also be responsible.

Pressure on the sciatic nerve can result from a number of reasons including

  • Sometimes, just sitting awkwardly can cause sciatica.
  • Piriformis syndrome (tightness of the piriformis muscle in the buttock that compresses the sciatic nerve)
  • Spinal misalignments, vertebral dysfunction
  • herniated disc
  • Poor posture – wearing high heels, prolonged sitting, poor mattress
  • Poor lifting technique and poor bending habits
  • Spinal compressions due to osteoporosis

Diagnosis of Sciatica

Since there are many disorders that can cause sciatica, our first task at Waverley Chiropractic is to determine the exact cause of your sciatic nerve interference.

Chiropractic treatment

  • Always begins with a thorough history,
  • Spinal, orthopaedic and neurological examination.
  • Special diagnostic imaging investigations such as X-ray, CT, MRI

Treatment of Sciatica

As sciatica is due to pressure on the sciatic nerve, it stands to reason that treatment involves removing this pressure. Your Chiropractic treatment aims to achieve this by reducing nerve pressure caused by poorly moving spinal joints as well as easing muscular tension in the lower spine, buttock and leg.

This is achieved by using a combination of the following techniques:

  • Spinal mobilisations
  • Massage therapy and trigger point therapy
  • Stretching tight muscles, joints, tendons and ligaments
  • Ultrasound and other electrical stimulation devices
  • Advice in relation to how to minimise pressure and irritation of the sciatic nerve

In addition to this, you will be given a series of home stretching exercises and asked to apply ice and heat to help aid your recovery.

If you are suffering with sciatica at the moment please do not delay – often you can achieve the best results when you address the symptoms early!

For further information, or to consult with Dr Shaun Beovich from Waverley Chiropractic Centre in Glen Waverley call (03) 88395364 or book online at www.waverleychiro.com.au