Understanding Slipped (Herniated) Disc And Its Other Terms

You may have heard of the word ‘slipped disc’ multiple times throughout your lifetime but do you know the medical term for it is Herniated Disc? It can also be referred to as a ruptured, torn, bulged, prolapsed, protruded or sequestrated disc by your healthcare professional. While the terms may adversely differ and make you […]

How To Alleviate Sciatica Pain?

The most common misconception of sciatica is that it is a medical condition in and of itself. However, sciatica actually refers to a group of symptoms caused by other issues in your lower back! Sciatica specifically describes the pain that runs up and down your legs from your buttocks or lower back. It is caused […]

Vlog: Spinal Cord Anatomy

Most people know that the spinal cord is important for our daily functioning. It houses our central nervous system and supports our body. But do you know how it works and why these specific functions are important? Spine Anatomy Labeled: Parts of the Spine For starters, the spine comprises three sections: the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine. The cervical spine is also known as the neck. As the part of the spine closest to the brain, it’s an incredibly crucial part of the central nervous system! Blood vessels carrying vital nutrients directly to the brain are housed here. It also supports your head and enables flexibility. The thoracic spine is the most rigid and inflexible part of the spine. It is built that way as it holds up the body, meaning it must be strong enough to withstand huge amounts of pressure exerted when standing or sitting. Finally, the lumbar spine is the centre of our body’s locomotion: be it running, jumping or swimming, most big movements originate from the lumbar spine! As a heavily-used area, it’s especially prone to wear and tear and must be well-cared for. Caring For Your Spine The key to keeping your spine healthy lies in two key areas: exercise and nutrition. Exercise strengthens the back muscles, stabilising and lending further support to your spine. Some good exercises to perform (with proper form, of course) include: Bridges Knee-to-chest stretches Stuart McGill’s Big Three Exercises, which build lower back endurance. These exercises include the McGill Curl-up, the Side Bridge and the Bird Dog, which can be found in this article Certain weight training exercises such as pull-ups and lat pull-downs, if you are able to perform them properly You can read posts 1, 2 and 3 in our Nutrition series to find out more about foods that nourish your body and spine! To learn more about each section of the spine and their functions more in-depth, do continue watching our vlog below! Should you have any questions or concerns about your spinal health, schedule an appointment with us by calling us at 62084669 or dropping us an email wecare@mychirocare.sg—we’re happy to help. 🙂

Are Back Braces Worth It?

At My Chirocare, we frequently get asked questions about back braces. “Will they work?” “What do they do?” “Should I get one?” The answer to all these questions is that it’s not so straightforward! To explain why, we need to understand how back braces function. How Does A Back Brace Work? A back brace is used to provide additional back support. Typically, it works by holding up the back, supporting the spine and back muscles. Back braces improve posture, relieve pain and reduce back strain. Back braces are used by people with acute back pain, such as disc herniations (think conditions like slipped or ruptured disc) and degenerative disc diseases. In these cases, back braces reduce the pain experienced while bending, lifting and twisting. The structural support eases the pressure exerted on spinal nerves, which are already irritated by disc-related issues. I Have Back Pain—Should I Get A Back Brace? Before making your decision, you should always consult your chiropractor to determine the root causeof your pain! Sometimes, there are better solutions to your issues, such as specific strengthening exercises. Some of the disadvantages of wearing a back brace include its failure to target the underlying causes of your pain! When you rely on back braces too much, the postural muscles in your back become underused. As they weaken, your spine and joints become more prone to further injuries. Your condition may end up worsened! Back braces should thus never be worn for too long. If you decide on a back brace, keep it on for a short period of time, and not so much that the body starts relying on it. Better yet, only wear a back brace with your chiropractor’s guidance. Back braces are merely assistive devices, not long-term and permanent solutions. Specific (non-exhaustive) circumstances which may warrant a back brace include: Pain that is sudden and strong (acute), but remove the back brace once it has passed Chronic, long-term pain, in which a back brace should be used with proper professional guidance At My Chirocare, we sometimes show our patients how to use a posture brace for specific rehabilitation exercises. In such cases, a back brace may enhance the benefits of the exercises and reduce the risk of injury—and is used sparingly. What Should I Do Then? Back, neck and postural issues are often indicators of deeper-rooted biomechanical dysfunction. Such dysfunction causes abnormal structural changes to our joints, nerves, muscles and other soft tissues—problems which back braces cannot directly resolve. Biomechanical issues are usually best resolved through long-term conditioning and chiropractic treatment. For example, a common misconception is that rounded shoulders can be corrected over time by a brace. However, by relying on an upper back brace, the muscles that hold up the shoulders and neck are neglected, exacerbating the slouch. The most appropriate solution is to strengthen the muscles in the shoulders, neck and back, as well as consciously practice good posture. This approach actively trains, shapes and corrects the body’s faulty biomechanics, eliminating the need for a back brace (and saving money!). Chiropractic treatment is the most comprehensive course of action for those with back and neck issues. Chiropractors help restore proper joint biomechanics and provide specific, tailored advice on physical rehabilitation and exercise. Your chiropractor can also advise you on the use of back or posture braces if needed. If you would like to get your back or neck pain checked out, feel free to read more about them here and here! You may schedule an appointment with us by calling us at 62084669 or dropping us an email wecare@mychirocare.sg!

Is That A Crack In My Back? Identifying Back Pains§

In our previous two articles, we learned about disc bulges and herniations and various back problems. We conclude this series with a very important instalment: learning how to describe the type of pain you’re experiencing! The key to getting the right treatment is to establish which type of back pains and symptoms you may be […]

Is That A Crack In My Back? Upper and Lower Back Strains

In the previous article, we talked about disc bulges and herniations. Today, we’ll be discussing another common source of back pains: upper and lower back strains. Where exactly is the upper and lower back? Our upper back is also called the thoracic spine. As the name suggests, it forms the upper part of the back […]

Is That A Crack In My Back? Disc Bulges and Herniations

Did you know that your back is one of the most important parts of your body? The spinal cord is the lifeline that connects your brain and the rest of the nervous system to your body, transmitting nerve signals that power every single move you make. However, our spines are rather fragile and, if not […]

Vlog: What is Scoliosis?

Scoliosis is a condition where your spine is abnormally curved, either in a C or S-shape, instead of maintaining its natural, straight shape. Scoliosis can be experienced by people of all ages, including children. There are two types of scoliosis: structural and functional. In this article, we briefly touch on structural and functional scoliosis and […]

6 Tips To Improve Your Back & Posture

We all know that manual labour may lead to physical trauma or injuries to our spine. However, not many know that prolonged sitting can be a form of stress, strain and silence trauma to our spine too! Why is prolonged sitting unhealthy for us? Prolonged sitting causes a condition called creep: our spine ligaments are stretched and lengthened and cannot return to their normal length. Our muscles contract and shorten, leading to common postural issues such as the head forward, rounded shoulder and hunched back postures. Here are six tips to minimise the damaging effects of prolonged sitting. 1. Take regular breaks every 30 mins – 1 hour Your body is not designed to stay in the same position for a long time. Get some movement in every now and then: grab a drink, go for a toilet break or walk around. If you are really busy, a quick spinal twist and stretch that takes only seconds is better than nothing. 2. Rest against the backrest of your chair Get your back leaning against the backrest of your seat. This will ensure you sit upright, relieving the burden off the muscles holding your sitting posture. 3. Ensure your chairs have a lumbar support Your lumbar spine is the arched section at the bottom of the spine. In a neutral position, it should havea normal arch. However, when sitting for an extended period of time, the lumbar spine starts to straighten. This causes strain, micro-damage and deeply uncomfortable lower back pain[1] . Resolve this by investing in a chair with a lumbar support design or a lumbar support cushion for your seat. 4. Stretch regularly As mentioned, muscles are shortened by prolonged sitting. Stretch the muscles around your neck, shoulders and chest frequently to prevent shortening and improve your posture. Some stretches you can do include standing chest stretches, neck rolls and shoulder rolls. 5. Exercise regularly Exercise strengthens and improves the endurance of the muscles that hold posture. Exercising and strengthening your body the right way allows you to maintain good sitting posture for a longer time. Some good exercises include lower back workouts, walking and tai chi—easily done at home or at a nearby open space! 6. Seek chiropractic treatment Chiropractic care helps identify restrictions and dysfunction caused by prolonged sitting and treats them before our body tissues are permanently damaged. Chiropractic care also treats the effects of prolonged sitting like neck pain, headaches, lower back pain and various postural issues. You can get high-quality chiropractic care and treatment by booking your appointment with us at 62084669 or wecare@mychirocare.sg—we are more than happy to answer any questions you have!