California may enjoy an outdoorsy image, but for every wakeboarder and snowboarder, there are many Californians spending a lot of time on their rear ends. Whether it’s chained to a desk or sitting in the infamous traffic, many of the state’s denizens sit more than is healthy, wreaking havoc on their spinal health. The resulting issues, from the lower-back pain that afflicts millions to more serious conditions such as slipped disks, keep San Jose chiropractor offices busy year-round. Before these conditions become serious, it’s important to have a general understanding of the spine. In fact, no less a figure than Hippocrates once said, “One should first get a knowledge of the structure of the spine; for this is also requisite for many diseases.” Read on for Groupon’s study of the many shapes our backs can take: A Healthy BackViewed from the back, a normal spine runs straight up and down. From the side, it curves in gently at the neck, out between the shoulders, back in at the torso, and out again around the lower back. Deviations from this shape can cause stress on other parts of the body, and they generally fall into three categories: scoliosis, lordosis, and kyphosis. ScoliosisPerhaps the most widely known spinal condition, scoliosis is a lateral, or side-to-side, curvature of the spine in either a C or S shape. Scoliosis usually sets in right before puberty and occurs more frequently in girls than in boys; a telltale sign of the condition is uneven hips and shoulders or a lean toward one side. Most cases are mild and require only regular observation to ensure that the curve doesn't worsen, though severe scoliosis can impede lung function. LordosisAlso referred to as “swayback,” this condition occurs when the lower back curves excessively inward, creating a concave appearance from the side. Lordosis can cause stress on the lower back and is common in pregnant women and people who carry excess weight around their abdomens. KyphosisThe flip side of lordosis is kyphosis, a condition that arises from excessive outward curvature of the upper back. This condition can give rise to the appearance of a hunched back, developing over time due to age and poor posture. Local Chiropractors Luckily for those with the above conditions—or even everyday lower-back pain—San Jose chiropractic practices specialize in treating these and other spinal issues. The services at local outposts such as Milpitas Spine Center and Ultimate Health Chiropractic include exams, adjustments, and acupuncture, all rendered in an effort to help patients return to lives unencumbered by nagging back pain. Patients should consult with a chiropractor to figure out which treatments are best for them.Read More
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To anyone who’s ever had to stare down a wall of heating pads, braces, pain relievers, balms, and ointments at the drugstore, it should come as no surprise that roughly 80% of the population experiences back pain at some point. A lot of that pain starts in the workplace. In fact, the American Chiropractic Association suggests that half of all working Americans each year report back pain symptoms. This makes for a growing problem in San Francisco chiropractor offices. The city has added an estimated 50,000 office jobs in recent years, and that means a lot of time at the desk. Sitting, according to Chicago-based chiropractor Christopher Wolcott, ”is one of the worst things we do as a society.” Why the Back Hurts It’s easy to understand why so many people seek out clinics in San Francisco: the back’s vertebral column comprises dozens of bones (more than 15% of all bones in an adult body), all of which work in concert to protect the thick bundle of nerves running the length of the spine. How Chiropractors HelpDuring spinal manipulation, chiropractors perform a series of swift motions that realign all those intricate moving parts—usually with their hands but sometimes with a small device to help wrangle bones and soft tissue. This mechanically assisted technique, called the Activator Method, is used at San Francisco practices such as Family Chiropractic Clinic (222 7th St). The small, handheld instrument employs a spring-loaded mechanism to deliver a focused, corrective pulse to specific areas of the spine, allowing for more fine-tuned adjustments. Some chiropractors may also recommend massage therapy to round out treatment plans. Does It Work?The spine’s organizational complexity calls into question the idea that someone can simply crack your back and fix it, but a wide range of studies have shown that over time there can be spinal benefits to having a trained professional make minor physical adjustments. Some studies have found that spinal manipulation can alleviate lower-back pain as effectively as pain-relief medications and other conventional treatments. The therapy also doesn’t carry some of the side effects of daily medication, and a chiropractor, osteopath, or physical therapist can customize treatments to target specific regions of tension and soreness. Where to GoThere are dozens of chiropractic doctors in San Francisco. Here are just three to get you started:Financial District Chiropractic | 555 Front St.SF Custom Chiropractic | 425 Washington St.Life Chiropractic | 644 Laguna St.Read More
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