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February 5, 2019 Lower Back0

Are you experiencing neck or lower back pain but you don’t know where it’s coming from? Maybe you’re less active lately, causing more discomfort and pain. If you’re wondering whether or not these symptoms are related to spinal stenosis, you’re in the right place.

In this article, we’re discussing what spinal stenosis is and what causes it. We’ll also detail specific symptoms that you should be aware of so that you can consult your doctor for treatment. Keep reading to learn more. 

What Is Spinal Stenosis?

This condition is known as a narrowing of the spaces within your spine. In other words, it affects the spinal cord and spinal column. When this narrowing happens, it allows for pressure on the nerves that travel through your spine. 

What Causes Spinal Stenosis?

Symptoms of osteoarthritis are one of the most common causes of spinal stenosis. The wear and tear on your bones and joints can cause the narrowing of your spinal column which results in worsening symptoms over time.

Some other causes include the following: 

Spinal Injuries

If you’ve ever been involved in a traumatic car accident, you may be at risk for this degenerative condition. Dislocations or fractures to vertebrae or displaced bone can damage the spinal canal. Likewise, recent back surgery can cause swelling that puts pressure on those nerves.

Bone Overgrowth

Another condition known as Paget’s disease is a bone disease that generally affects adults. It can cause bone overgrowth in the spine. Other wear and tear may also prompt the formation of bone spurs that grow into the spinal canal.

Herniated Disks

The disks in your vertebrae serve as cushions and shock absorbers in your spine. Age can cause these disks to dry out and crack which can allow the soft inner material to escape. This material then puts pressure on your spinal cord or other nerves.

Tumors

Although uncommon, tumors can form inside the spinal cord and in the space between the spinal cord and your vertebrae. 

Thickened Ligaments

As you age, your ligaments may become stiff, thick, tough, or thick. Ligaments close to your spine may bulge into the spinal canal causing pressure. 

Types of Spinal Stenosis

The types of this condition are classified according to where they affect you. It is possible to have more than one type. It is not common to have a diagnosis for your middle or upper back.

Cervical Stenosis

Cervical stenosis affects the cervical spine and may also be referred to as cervical spinal stenosis. Your cervical spine is in your neck and pain may radiate into your shoulders and upper back.

Lumbar Stenosis

The most common type of spinal stenosis occurs in the lower back. This is known as lumbar stenosis.

Symptoms

Some people never experience symptoms but may show evidence of the condition via MRI or CT scans

For cervical stenosis, look out for numbness or tingling in your hands, arms, feet, or legs. Also be aware of weakness in these areas. Balance and walking may also be impeded.

Severe cases of cervical stenosis may prompt urinary urgency and incontinence or bowel problems.

Numbness, tingling, or weakness in the feet or legs and pain or cramping after standing for long periods may be indications of lumbar spine stenosis or lower back. 

Complications 

In rare cases and without treatment, severe spinal stenosis can progress and cause permanent damage such as numbness, weakness, and balance problems. Incontinence and paralysis are also attributable to the long term effects of this disease when left untreated. 

Treatment

Depending on the severity of your case, your doctor may prescribe various treatments to help with the pain and other symptoms.

Medications

Regular pain relievers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen may help with pain. These are generally reserved for short term use.

Some antidepressants and anti-seizure medications are also helpful for pain.

Physical Therapy

Especially if you have become less active due to your pain, your muscles are at a disadvantage for becoming weaker. This may cause even more pain. 

A physical therapist can teach you specific exercises that can help you maintain flexibility and build strength and endurance.

Steroid Injections

Steroid injections can help reduce inflammation and relieve some pain. This may not work for everyone and your doctor will only prescribe a few injections per year.

Decompression

In order to alleviate the need for surgery, if at all possible, your doctor may perform a decompression procedure. This procedure uses needle-like instruments to remove thickened ligaments around the spinal cord. This method of treatment is only reserved for those with spinal stenosis related to thickened ligaments.

Surgery

As a last resort, your doctor may recommend spinal stenosis surgery. There are a few different options when it gets to this level so it’s important to have a lengthy conversation with your doctor about which option is best for your condition.

Home Remedies

Whether you have been officially diagnosed or you match some of the symptoms listed here, you need to get regular exercise. Yoga is a beneficial practice because it’s easy on your joints and teaches regular breathing which can help minimize pain.

You may also consider massage therapy, chiropractic treatment, and acupuncture as alternative remedies to medication and surgery. 

Final Thoughts

Spinal stenosis generally affects women more prominently than men. While it can be a congenital disease, it is more likely to onset in people over age fifty. Younger people that experience spinal stenosis may have degenerative changes that require the attention of a physician.

Your doctor can give you a proper diagnosis by performing an MRI or CT scan. Spinal imaging can differentiate the causes of your pain which can also include trauma, spinal deformity, and genetic diseases that affect bone and muscle development.

If you have questions or require a consult, contact us at one of our convenient locations across New Jersey. We have been leaders in pain management for 15 years and look forward to helping you. 


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January 26, 2019 Lower Back0

 

There are few forms of discomfort worse than back pain. This especially true of pain from the sacroiliac joint. This can be a sharp, stabbing pain that radiates up from the upper buttock out to the hips and down to the back of your thighs.

 

Sacroiliac pain can also be experienced as a tingling or numbness in the legs. Believe it or not, the SI joint is actually responsible for 15 to 30 percent of all cases of chronic lower back pain.

 

Let’s take a look at some of the causes of SI pain, as well as what can be done to reduce it.

 

Sacroiliac Pain Causes and Treatments

 

What causes sacroiliac pain? What are the treatment options? Read on to learn everything you need to know.

 

Where are the Sacroiliac Joints Located?

 

Here are the basics: The SI joint are located where your sacrum and ilium meet. The sacrum is a triangle-shaped bone at the bottom of the spine The ilium is the uppermost point of your pelvis, and is one of the three bones that form your hip bones. These joints are essentially located in your upper buttock; there is one on each side.

 

The purpose of the SI joints is to act as a shock absorber to support the weight of your body by distributing it evenly across the pelvis and reduce pressure on the spine. These joints are where your upper body meet your lower body. It is meant to be very stable joint; in anatomic studies it has only minor movement. To add to stability these joints are connected by muscles and ligaments that support the area further reducing its mobility.

 

What’s the Source of SI Joint Pain?

 

Ankylosing Spondylitis

 

This is a type of inflammatory arthritis that generally impacts the vertebrae and joints of the spine.

 

Anklylosing spondylitis not only affects SI joints, it’s also known to cause painful inflammation in a number of other joints, as well as pain in the eyes and organs of the body.

 

Pain resulting from AS is typically mild and intermittent, yet is sometimes quite severe and ongoing.

 

Osteoarthritis

 

Osteoarthritis is most often associated with aging. It is caused by the wearing down of cartilage in the SI joint, spine, and other joints.

 

Pregnancy

 

Sacroiliac pain can also be caused by significant bodily changes such as pregnancy, when hormones are released making the SI joints more elastic. This is necessary so that the pelvis can widen during childbirth.

 

But this also makes joints less stable. Thus combined with increased weight and the added weight of the baby, the mother will experience severe lower back pain. This often will resolve with child birth, however for some patients this pain does not go away due to instability in the joint.

 

Abnormal Walking Patterns

 

People who have developed abnormal walking patterns are often prone to joint dysfunction in the lower back. In many cases this is caused by such irregularities as having one leg shorter than the other, as well as from a change in walking pattern during pregnancy.

 

Physical Trauma and Injury

 

Sacroiliac pain can also be caused by any form of physical injury. This could result from car accidents, falls, a wide range of sports injury, as well as any type of severe physical trauma that might not become apparent for day or weeks later following the traumatic event.

 

Previous Lumbar Spine Surgery/Fusions

 

After patient’s have had spine surgery, especially lumbar fusions, the normal body mechanics change. Often the hardware that is placed is much stronger than the normal bones. Due to this, the force is transmitted to the area below the fusion. The final stop is the SI joint. This pressure often will cause the joint to undergo additional wear and tear as well as increased instability causing pain.

 

The Symptoms of Sacroiliac Pain

 

Although every individual is different, and experiences sacroiliac pain somewhat differently, there are some universal symptoms to watch for:

 

These include pain in the lower back radiating down the back of the thighs typically stopping at the knee however sometimes it does go down to the feet. Other symptoms are increased pain when standing up from a sitting position (like getting off the toilet or out of a car low to the ground) or pain in the lower back while driving.

 

Another symptom that might point to sacroiliac joint pain is the feeling like your legs may buckle and not support the weight of your body, as well as stiffness or a burning sensation in the pelvis.

 

Diagnosing the Problem

 

Due to the fact that the sacroiliac joint is located deep inside the body, it can be challenging for a doctor to examine. It’s also difficult to detect damage to these joints with imaging tests such as X-rays or CT scans.

 

There are some physical exam maneuvers which can clue in your physician that the SI joint is an issue.

 

The most precise method to diagnose this problem  often requires a doctor to inject a numbing drug, such as lidocaine. If this injection makes the pain go away in a short amount of time, it’s an indication that you do indeed have an SI joint problem.

 

Treating Sacroiliac Pain

 

There are a wide variety of treatments for this form of pain, ranging from self-care and physical therapy, to surgery:

 

Physical Therapy and Exercise

 

Low-impact exercise such as yoga is ideal for alleviating lower back pain. Massage is often effective at easing pain, and helps to strengthen and stabilize the joints of the lower back area.

 

Physical therapy can also be useful, as well as wearing a sacroiliac belt that helps ease the pain by support the SI joint.

 

Medication

 

There are a number of anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxers that can be used for short-term pain relief. But these should not be considered long-term options due to the risk of addiction, and because they simply do not fix the problem.

 

Injections

 

Simple injections can often provide intermediate to long term relief from SI joint pain. These injections include numbing medicine and anti-inflammatory steroids. Another injection that can make the pain relief last longer is a radiofrequency ablation where the nerves transmitting the pain from the SI joint are destroyed via special needles. There is no incisions for these type of procedures.

 

SI Fusion with the CornerLoc System

Lastly, a permanent fix for SI joint pain is treatment with the revolutionary CornerLoc system. This minimally invasive procedure introduced cadaver bone graft into the SI joint through a straw like instrument. This graft is then then surrounded with your own stem cells and bone marrow. The graft acts as scaffolding for your own bone to grow around it eliminating SI joint instability. This is better than other SI fusion systems which use rods and screws which is riskier, move invasive, and can lead to more issues.

 

Understanding the Source of Severe Lower Back Pain

 

There is certainly nothing fun about experiencing sacroiliac pain. This form of lower back pain can be debilitating and make life miserable.

 

The first step in eliminating this type of pain is to understand the source of it. The back is a fragile part of the body, and when something is wrong with the joints of the lower back, you suddenly realize how much you take it for granted.

 

This article should help you better understand sacroiliac pain and how to treat any discomfort caused by inflammation of this area of the lower back.

 

Click here to learn more about when you should see your doctor about joint pain.

 

 

 


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January 19, 2019 Lower Back0

 

The majority of people in the world will experience back pain in their lives. While many causes of back pain include injury and disorders, a shocking number of back pain cases range from improper lifting and bad posture.

 

A popular way to prevent back pain and improving posture is by wearing a back brace.

 

Back braces hold up your back in the best position, preventing strain while you’re sitting and standing. Back braces are perfect to wear while you’re at work, exercising, and for a variety of other situations.

 

Are you thinking about wearing a back brace? Here are a few benefits you’ll experience.

 

It is important to note, that back braces are not meant to be worn all the time. Listed below are some activities which maybe appropriate to wear a brace however it is not meant to be worn more than about 2 hours daily. Excessive use of a back brace can actually lead to muscle atrophy and weakening of your core.

 

Immobilization

 

Did you know immobilization is beneficial for your back and spine?

 

Unnecessary movement can help prevent back pain, especially if you had a past back injury or spinal surgery. In certain situations, immobilization is crucial for your back to heal properly.

 

This is where a back brace comes in. The brace prevents major movements in the back area. These movements include flexion, extension, and rotation.

 

This helps to prevent using your back to its full potential, preventing back pain and further injuries.

 

If you’re using a back brace to prevent mobility, make sure you buy the right kind of back brace. There are many different types of braces that offer more protection against mobility.

 

Improves Your Posture

 

Your spine should be in an upright position, your shoulders back, your chest up, and your core tucked in. But how many of us sit and stand in this position? Many of us slouch over, curving our spine.

 

This not only results in bad posture but severe back pain. Bad posture also causes spinal weakness and can even result in deformities and make you more prone to injuries.

 

What’s the best way to ensure your spine is in healthy alignment? A back brace will force your spine at a straightened position. Wear your back brace when you notice you start developing posture issues.

 

Prevents Back Pain

 

Back pain interferes with many aspects of our lives. It can make working, exercising, and even performing simple daily functions unbearable.

 

Back pain ranges from mild to severe. Those with mild cases experience back pain but it’s only a slight inconvenience. Others suffer from severe back pain, usually as a result of an injury or symptom of an event.

 

Those with all types of back pain notice that certain movements and positions exacerbate their back pain. In order for your back to heal, your back has to limit certain motions, as explained previously. This is where a back brace comes in.

 

A back brace prevents unnecessary movements that further damage the back. This helps align your spine and strengthen your back muscles. Your back can heal and your back pain will decrease.

 

Back braces also take support away from the vital areas of your back, such as the spine, invertebral discs, and vertebrae. This alleviates the stress these areas endure to support your back, resulting in pain reduction.

 

They’re Easy to Wear

 

While you think you may need a back brace, you’re wondering how you can wear it.

 

Fortunately, they’re easy to wear and you can often wear them under your clothes. That’s because they come in a design that’s easy to secure and isn’t as noticeable under clothes.

 

But there are some best practices when choosing a back brace.

 

First, wear the correct size. You’ll need some measurements, such as your clothes size and your back measurements.

 

When the back brace fully covers your lower back and tailbone, you’ll know you have the correct size. It also shouldn’t be too loose or too snug.

 

They Treat a Myriad of Back Conditions

 

While back braces are no cure, they can definitely help manage the symptoms of a myriad of different back conditions. These include:

 

  • Kyphosis
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Back muscle sprains
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal tumors
  • Spinal fractures
  • Whiplash
  • Spondylolisthesis

 

Before trying back bracing as a treatment, discuss your options with your doctor.

 

All back ailments are different and require varying levels of treatment. There are also different types of back braces – one type may benefit you more than another.

 

It’s a Holistic Treatment Option

 

Because of pain pill addiction, many pain patients are seeking holistic pain relief options. If back pain is your struggle, a back brace is an effective holistic treatment option.

 

Back braces don’t simply cover up the pain.

 

They work by improving your posture, supporting your back, and strengthening your back muscles. This helps take away a lot of stress on your back, healing your back and spine and preventing pain altogether.

 

Back braces also prevent your back condition from worsening. You’ll be less risk of injury, developing more pain and developing other back and spine ailments.

 

Helps Strengthen Your Core and Back

 

Are you trying to get in better shape? Wearing a back brace offers a myriad of strengthening benefits for both your back and your core.

 

Your core is the center of your body. Your core should be the area supporting your body – not your back. But many people have a weak core, so the support falls on their back. But this leads to pain and even injury.

 

A back brace forces a straight spine and a tucked tummy. This forces your abdominal muscles to take in the support you’re forcing upon your back, helping strengthen your abdomen.

 

In addition, a back brace will help strengthen your back and spine by forcing the muscles into alignment.

 

For the best strengthening benefits, wear fitness-specific back braces. These are ideal to wear while exercising.

 

Is a Back Brace Not Enough?

 

Is your back pain becoming so severe, a back brace isn’t enough to treat your pain? You’ll need some help. We treat a myriad of different pain conditions. If you’re in New Jersey, make an appointment with us today.

 

 

 


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January 16, 2019 Lower Back0

Did you know that the spine is very flexible? In fact, if you bent it as far as it could go, it would make about 2/3 of a complete circle.

However, as almost everyone knows, a small pain in the back has a huge impact. But what if that pain represents a much bigger problem? Women over 40 are susceptible to bone mass loss because of osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a reduction in the mass of the spongy inner bone. The spongy tissue gives the hard outer bone its strength. As this fails, bones become weaker, break easier and take longer to heal.

In the back, this can lead to a very severe problem called spinal compression fractures.

The vertebrae don’t break in half as we think of other bones breaking. Instead, they crush inward. This tends to happen when doing a simple task which puts increased pressure on the bone.

Keep reading to learn the most important things you need to know about the treatment of this condition.

Treatments Options Not Requiring Surgery

Surgery isn’t always the first option when dealing with spinal compression fractures. In fact, surgery may not be necessary at all.

1. Pain Meds

A doctor will try to reduce your pain first. Pain tells us when something is wrong. In many cases, OTC pain meds reduce most of the pain.

Sometimes, OTC meds are not enough. The doctor will then prescribe a specific mixture to relieve the various types of pain. Because of the type and location of the bone, you will have muscle, bone and nerve pain.

In some cases, doctors will give you small doses of muscle relaxers or anti-depressants.

2. Bed Rest

Sometimes the fracture is severe enough to warrant a few days of bed rest. A few days to start the healing process will suffice.

Because osteoporosis worsens from lack of movement, extended bed rest isn’t a good idea. The rest begins the healing process, so you can start moving again and attacking the weakness at its source.

3. Back Brace

Most spinal compression fractures occur in the transition between the thoracic and lumbar vertebrae. These are the vertebrae between your chest and your lower back.

Fractures are more common here because of the increased flexibility of the joints. A brace will greatly reduce that flexibility and prevent aggravating the injury further.

When getting a brace, remember the key to an effective brace. The less comfortable the brace, the more effective it will be.

4. Treating Osteoporosis

You have rested a couple days. Your pain meds are working. And you are wearing your brace with almost religious fervor, what next?

The cause of the fracture needs to be determined in order for treatment to continue. If osteoporosis caused the fracture, the doctor will want to get that under control.

Once one vertebra has fractured, the chance of surrounding bones breaking increases. As with most diseases, a multifaceted approach to treatment builds the best defense.

Dietarily, increase your intake of calcium and vitamin D from foods before reaching for pills. Small fish, seaweed, and leafy greens provide high doses of calcium. Vitamin D resides in dairy, salmon, eggs, and mushrooms.

Exercise will slowly be incorporated into your treatment as well. Free weight put small amounts of stress on the spine and bones to cause them to grow.

Hormone therapy can slow the rate bone breakdown, or speed the rate of bone rebuilding. Either choice benefits the strength of bones.

Other medications will help regulate or increase calcium availability in the body.

Surgical Spinal Compression Fracture Treatment

Most surgical options use some sort of bone cement to treat the fracture.

5. Vertebroplasty

Vertebroplasty involves inserting a needle, guided by an x-ray, into the spongy tissue. Once there, the needle injects bone cement into the spongy tissue.

The cement hardens within minutes and patients can go home the same day in most cases. This has proven effective for restoring patient function, but not for pain.

6. Kyphoplasty

Kyphoplasty or balloon kyphoplasty developed as the next generation of vertebroplasty. One needle is still inserted into the spongy tissue of the bone and guided by an x-ray.

However, a balloon comes out the tip of the needle first. With gentle inflation, it restores the vertebra to nearly the original shape. Then, after deflating and withdrawing the balloons, surgeons inject bone cement into the cavity.

This procedure restores patient function, reduces pain. What’s more, it brings the spine back to a natural curvature.

This last point makes it more effective at treating the potential long-term deformities of spinal compression fractures.

Time is of The Essence

If you have pain in your back lasting more than a few days, that warning needs attention. Or if you have noticed a sharp drop in your mobility seek medical care.

Spinal compression fractures become more common as your age goes beyond 40. And waiting for more than a few weeks can result in permanent body damage.

For more information on the debilitating fractures or to make an appointment, get in touch with us here.


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January 13, 2019 Lower Back0

 

Did you know that 54 percent of Americans have suffered from chronic back pain for five years or more? Are you one of them?

 

Some people blame stress for their back pain, while others blame injuries or poor posture. Some have no idea at all what’s causing their pain.

 

If you’ve been wondering, “why does my back hurt?” keep reading. Some common causes of back pain — along with tips on how to relieve that pain — are explained below.

 

Why Does My Back Hurt?

 

There are lots of issues that can contribute to chronic back pain. Some common causes include:

 

Spinal Sprains or Strains

 

Often, back pain can be attributed to an injury like a sprain (stretched or torn ligament) or a strain (stretched or torn muscle). If you’ve been in a car accident or involved in a sports injury, you could have sustained a strain or a sprain.

 

These injuries can also stem from simply overstretching when reaching overhead or reaching behind you to grab something.

 

Sacroiliac Joint Inflammation

 

If the cartilage surrounding the sacroiliac joint, which is located at the junction of the spine and the pelvis, becomes irritated or inflamed, it can lead to pain in the lower back.

 

Instability and inflammation to this joint often result from acute injuries, chronic wear and tear, or a side effect of a condition like arthritis.

 

Spinal Stenosis

 

Spinal stenosis is a condition that occurs when the spinal canal begins to narrow. This narrowing puts pressure on the spine and the nerves. This can lead to pain in the back as well as numbness in the legs and arms.

 

Spinal stenosis most commonly affects elderly individuals.

 

Herniated Discs

 

Many people’s back pain is also caused by disc disorders, including herniated discs.

 

A herniated disc is a type of injury that occurs when the soft tissue between the vertebrae in your spine slip out of place. Once they’ve slipped out of place, they may irritate the nerves and cause back pain.

 

Herniated discs can be caused by everyday wear and tear or by acute accidents or injuries.

 

Arthritis

 

There are many different forms of arthritis, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

 

Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage and bones begin breaking down. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes the immune system to attack the joint tissue.

 

Back pain can be a symptom of both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

 

Scoliosis

 

Scoliosis is a condition that involves an abnormal curvature of the spine.

 

Many people are born with scoliosis and don’t notice any serious side effects. But, if you develop scoliosis later in life, you will likely experience back pain as a result.

 

Lifestyle Triggers

 

There are many different lifestyle activities and factors that can cause or contribute to back pain. Common lifestyle triggers for back pain include:

 

  • Sitting at a desk all day
  • Lifting heavy objects, either occasionally or as a part of your daily routine
  • Not exercising
  • Being overweight
  • Smoking
  • Sleeping on an old or unsupportive mattress

 

Wearing high heels can also contribute to chronic back pain since these shoes often alter one’s posture and spinal alignment.

 

How to Prevent and Treat Back Pain

 

As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why you might be experiencing chronic back pain. The good news, though, is that there are also lots of strategies you can utilize to treat your back pain and keep it at bay.

 

The following are some of the most well-known and effective techniques to relieve back pain and prevent it:

 

Change Your Sleep Situation

 

If it’s been a long time since you last changed your mattress, you may want to consider an upgrade.

 

Getting a more comfortable, supportive mattress can make a world of difference for folks struggling with chronic back pain.

 

Chiropractic Adjustments

 

Many people experience back pain relief being adjusted by a chiropractor. Adjustments can help realign the spine to minimize pain and reduce inflammation.

 

Many chiropractors also specialize in helping people who are suffering from herniated discs.

 

A study released in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2017 did a comprehensive review of spinal manipulative treatment for acute low back pain and found moderate benefit but more importantly, almost no harm or further damage from doing so.

 

Massage

 

If your back pain was brought on by an injury like a strain or sprain, you might be able to find relief from a deep tissue massage.

 

Yoga

 

Research shows that a regular yoga practice can be very helpful to folks who struggle with low back pain. Even going to just one or two classes a week can make a difference.

 

Strength Training

 

By strengthening the muscles, especially the muscles of the back and core, you can improve your range of motion and prevent future injuries.

 

Are You Looking for Back Pain Relief?

 

Are you tired of wondering, “why does my back hurt?” Are you ready to get to the root of the problem and figure out what’s causing your pain?

 

Keep this information in mind to start getting to the root of your back pain and learning how you can treat it and prevent it from coming back in the future.

 

If you’ve tried home remedies and haven’t found any relief, you might want to consider working with a pain management specialist. 

 

Contact us today to schedule an appointment to learn more about our procedures and services that will help you experience back pain relief. 

 

 

 


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July 30, 2018 Lower Back0

Yoga has been a part of some cultures for more than 5000 years but has only in recent decades gained true popularity in the United States as more and more people discover the true benefits of yoga.

While it was first used as a form of spiritual practice in the Hindu faith it has long since expanded into an exercise used for physical and mental wellness around the world.

Check out these 10 awesome benefits of yoga and why you may want to start and end your day taking a little time to say “Namaste”

1. Cardio and Circulatory Wellness

Over 30 different studies on the correlation between yoga and heart health and it’s definitely an effective way to improve your heart health and cardio wellness.

Many people mistakenly think that yoga isn’t fast enough paced to give you the benefit of a good cardio workout.

The right combination of yoga moves added to your workout can be just as effective for your heart and cardio health as aerobics and other faster-paced workouts.

The great thing about yoga is that there’s much less hard impact on your joints and the rest of your body. You can give your heart the exercise and workout it needs without the wear and tear caused by activities like jogging or high impact aerobics.

2. Maintaining a Balanced Metabolism

Yoga can be a great way to boost and balance your metabolism. This will keep your body working like a well-oiled machine, help give you energy and lose weight if that’s the desired outcome.

The right moves can maximize the benefits of yoga for your metabolism.

Some of the poses that can best help your metabolism include:

  • The twisted chair pose
  • Locus pose
  • eagle pose
  • Cresent lunge pose
  • Bow pose
  • Shoulder stand pose

All of these yoga moves along with others can help you burn fat and lose weight when done for 20 minutes at least three times a week. For optimal results add them to your daily routine and see your metabolism kickstart your body into a healthier and more energetic form.

3. Flexibility, Muscle Tone, and Strength

If you want to be more flexible, have better tone and build muscle strength yoga is a great way to do it.

This is especially true for someone with mobility issues, arthritis, back pain and other chronic pain syndromes. You can slowly stretch muscles and gain tone without adding pressure and impact compression.

It’s always important to consult a medical professional when starting a new fitness program. If you have pre-existing conditions such as knee injuries, muscle, ligament or cartilage issues it’s even more crucial to seek professional advice.

You may need rest, treatments such as knee injections or physiotherapy before adding yoga to your daily routine.

4. Improved Energy and Vitality

One of the great benefits of yoga is that it not only increases your flexibility and strength but it boosts your energy.

A regular energizing yoga routine can help you refocus your thoughts and relax your body giving you more energy to conquer the world.

5. Breathe Easier with the Benefits of Yoga

Yoga has been proven in studies to improve the respiratory function in the elderly and has benefits for everyone when it comes to this.

Yoga helps you regulate your breath and relieve stress. You take in more oxygen and improve circulation and respiration.

6. Improved Athletic Performance and Endurance

Many Olympic and professional athletes from every sport imaginable use yoga to improve their muscle tone, flexibility, respiration and athletic ability. Yoga is a part of many divers, swimmers, gymnasts, wrestlers, ironmen competitors and more.

Athletes are performing downward facing dogs, dolphins, lunges, and eagle poses to help improve their endurance and flexibility.

7. Protection From Injury

Another one of the benefits of yoga for athletes is that it helps prevent injuries and promote healing. Greater flexibility and muscle tone reduces the risk of getting hurt when using those muscles during other more rigorous exercises

There are many poses that target core muscles used while running and doing other sports. They will help optimize your performance and protect you from common injuries that occur.

8. Boost Immunity, Improve Overall Health, Drain Lymph Node, and Adrenal Gland Health

At the beginning of this year, a large research and review study found that yoga can help boost your immune system in a couple ways.

It has a promising anti-inflammatory effect by reducing inflammation markers in those who do it regularly.

You can also protect yourself from infections and illnesses by doing yoga by boosting your immune system.

Many inverted yoga poses help promote lymphatic system drainage and help keep you healthier and happier.

9. Improved Mental Health and Wellness

Yoga helps you reduce stress, improve respiration, circulation and improves not only your overall physical health but your mental health as well.

Women are especially prone to filling their days with tasks and responsibilities for others. Planning regular daily yoga and stretching your stress away is an excellent way to take some time for self-care

10. Lower Stress, Blood Pressure, Blood Sugars and Cholesterol

On top of all the other benefits of yoga, many find it not only lowers stress but also significantly lowers things like their blood pressure, blood sugars and cholesterol levels.

This can reduce your risk of heart attacks, stroke, diabetes and a myriad of other illnesses and conditions. It also lowers your risk of health complications related to stress having a double bonus when added to your regular weekly routine.

The Benefits of Yoga Go Beyond Pain Relief

Yoga isn’t just about fitness or pain relief. Though it has proven beneficial for both. It is a practice that can have a positive effect on all areas of your life.

If you’re thinking about starting a yoga routine or looking for other solutions to your health and pain issues contact us today.


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June 17, 2018 Lower BackUpper Back0

Do you have recurring back pain that just won't go away? Then you might have facet joint arthritis. When you have back pain, it can be hard to know the cause of it however facet joint arthritis is a common cause of recurring pain in the neck and lower back. Facet joint arthritis and other problems can have serious effects and be disabling if left untreated. In this guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about facet joint arthritis and related issues. Keep reading to find out if this is the cause of your pain, and what you can do about it.


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Do you know what to it means when you have back pain after surgery? You might have failed back surgery syndrome. That’s right – back surgery failures are so common that there’s a name for it. In this guide, we’ll take a detailed look at all the complex issues that can happen when back surgery fails. You don’t have to live with pain – you have options. Keep reading to find out what they are.

What Causes Pain After Back Surgery?

Epidural Fibrosis

One of the most common causes for pain after back surgery is scar tissue (the medical term for it is epidural fibrosis). Whenever the body is injured, it tries to heal itself. Surgery is a major injury and thus scar tissue will form. Unfortunately, there is no way to control where and how the scar tissue forms and often it can trap a nerve resulting in pain. This is one of the most common reason for pain to develop approximately 6-12 months after surgery.

At first, you’ll probably experience no pain after your surgery. Then, you’ll gradually develop back or leg pain that doesn’t go away. If you have pain right after surgery but it keeps improving, you probably don’t have failed back surgery syndrome. However, if you don’t see improvements by three months after the surgery, your surgery probably wasn’t successful.

Some types of surgeries make epidural fibrosis more likely than others. For example, if you had spinal decompression surgery, your pain probably isn’t caused by scar tissue.

Improper Patient Selection

Sometimes, the cause of your post-surgery pain is that your surgery didn’t successfully treat the issue in the first place. The most important predictor of a having a good surgical outcome is having the proper diagnosis. How can you treat a problem if you don’t know what that problem is in the first place? To properly diagnose the cause of a patient’s pain, it takes a detailed history and physical exam, appropriate imaging, and potentially diagnostic injections to help localize the problem. If your doctor didn’t successfully diagnose the source of pain prior to surgery, there is a low likelihood the surgery will significantly help.

Recurrent Disc Herniation

There is no rule that states once a problem is fixed, it cannot happen again. All too commonly, patients who undergo surgeries such as a discectomy or microdiscectomy can develop a recurrent disc herniation. You’ll see pain relief at first, but then your pain will return suddenly. This is different from pain caused by scar tissue, which tends to build up gradually. This is a natural consequence of having the initial disc herniation in the first place. Once the disc is damaged, it is more likely to happen again even if you have it surgically removed.

Surgical Error

While not common, the surgeon may have committed a technical error during the procedure. For example, a part of your herniated disc might have been missed, or a small piece of bone might have gotten left too close to the nerve. If the nerve root becomes compressed due to one of these problems, you’ll feel pain. It is important to maintain appropriate follow up with your surgeon during the initial recovery phase. If the surgeon determines there is no technical issue with the surgery yet you still have pain, then there are additional options to treat the pain.

Failed Back Surgery Syndrome Treatment Options

What are your failed back surgery syndrome treatment options? Let’s take a look.

  1. Stretching to Avoid Scar Tissue Problems

It may sound overly simple, but stretching can sometimes help manage your back pain post-surgery. Prior to initiating an exercise routine, it is important to get approval from the surgeon.

If you stretch out your nerve root while your body is healing and growing scar tissue, your epidural fibrosis probably won’t cause pain. Keep in mind that scar tissue growing after surgery is normal. It makes sense to take this step to keep it from growing in a painful way.

Most of your scar tissue grows in the six to 12 week period after surgery, so that’s the time when it’s most important to stretch. Some medical professionals believe that keeping the nerve flexible while you heal will keep the scar tissue from growing where it can hurt you.

For example, you can do stretches that involve pumping your ankle while stretching your hamstrings. This helps move the nerve in your lower back, keeping the scar tissue from adhering to the nerve.

  1. Managing Pain Due to Scar Tissue

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, the scar tissue still forms around the nerve and causes pain after back surgery. You’ll need a physical exam and the right kinds of diagnostic imaging to see whether or not that’s the case.

If this is your issue, you have a couple of treatment options to choose from. You can use medications to manage the pain, combined with stretches to keep the issue to a minimum. Sometimes stretches can help free your nerve after the scar tissue has already started growing. There are more advanced treatment options including injection therapy, epidural adhesiolysis, or neuromodulation.

  1. Repeat Surgery

If your pain happens years after the surgery was completed, scar tissue isn’t the problem. Instead, the issue might be that your nerve has become compressed by a herniated disc or new bone growth. If that’s the case, you may need a discectomy or decompression surgery.

Do You Have Failed Back Surgery Syndrome?

Pain after back surgery can start to happen weeks, months, or years after the surgery. No matter when it starts or what the cause is, you should seek out failed back surgery syndrome treatment options right away.

You don’t need to live with pain. Back pain can become debilitating and negatively impact your quality of life. Instead, book an appointment with a medical professional who can help you figure out the cause of your pain and the right course of action.

Ready to get started on your personalized pain management plan? Book an appointment with us today!