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gardening

Gardening season is in full swing: with temperatures and spirits high, more people leave their winter skin on the couch so they can get growing. Gardening and chiropractic are complimentary: gardening is exactly the type of activity that gets people off the couch, to the benefit of their mind, body and soul. However, some of the motions involved can put strain on the back, especially if there is a pre-existing subluxation. At Espinosa Family Chiropractic, we offer prevention and treatment modalities that keep you in a state of enjoying gardening without the hassle of pain. 

Avoid aches and pains this gardening season by following these easy tips: 

Warm up: Stretching for less that 5 minutes before you get down and garden can keep your body limbered and strong against the kind of twisting, bending and dipping motions that are most frequent while gardening. 

Take breaks and drink water: Step back and enjoy the fruits of your labor while having a gulp of water or two. Make sure you are replacing the water that you shed so you don't end up feeling exhausted and headache-y at the end of the day. Keeping properly hydrated makes all the functioning systems of your body work more efficiently. 

Avoid twisting unnecessarily: Keep your spade in front of you, to avoid twisting behind you to reach it. 

Lift properly: large loads are sometimes unavoidable in the garden, so make sure that you observe proper lifting etiquette by lifting with your legs and whole body as opposed to bending and lifting with the back. 

Mix up your tasks: Remaining hunched over on your knees for a long period of time encourages muscles to tighten and strain to occur. If you can, mix it up by doing small tasks and moving from patch to patch of your garden to keep muscles limber. 

If your back is not letting you enjoy gardening the way you used to, give our office in Sacramento a call. We can identify and correct misalignment, and speed the healing process of damaged tissues and strained ligaments. 

Dr. Raymond Espinosa, D.C. 

driving tips

There is a high correlation between people who commute regularly or drive for a living and those who have spinal disorders. This is because the driver's seat is not the best place for backs: very rarely are car seats engineered with a proper resting position in mind, and if they are, it may not be properly adjusted to the individual. So we must take a proactive approach to protecting our musculoskeletal integrity when driving regularly. Here are some ways you can make your daily commute more conducive to a healthy back:

  • Lumbar support: whether it is built-in or whether you must add it in, using something that promotes the natural curvature of your spine will save you from the problem of slumping or slouching. 
  • This being said, you must still take frequent breaks, depending on the length of the journey. Even sitting with perfect posture without moving for hours leaves you stiff and sore. Make sure you are hydrating regularly, and take breaks to breathe in the scenery. 
  • Head positioning is very important. While you should always have your eyes on the road, make sure you are not craning your neck forward, amplifying the weight of your head to the spine and muscles in the neck and shoulders. Try to keep it centered above the spine with the chin slightly tucked. 

Don't let driving put a drag on your spinal health. If your back feels sore or out of sorts no matter what kind of good things you are doing for it, there may be an underlying spinal condition that needs evaluation. At our office in Sacramento, we provide you with adjustments to keep your spine in alignment and slowing the advance of degenerative decay. Find out how our form of corrective chiropractic can optimize your well being by calling our office today. 

Dr. Raymond Espinosa, D.C. 

 

stretching and strengthening

Strengthening and stretching: the immortal S’s that will help you overcome back pain once and for all. Whether you are suffering acute back pain from a traumatic injury, or more generalized pain that has accrued from repetitive stress, the back can benefit from these exercises done on a daily basis. DO NOT undertake any stretch, exercise or movement that exacerbates your pain to even the slightest degree. Your best bet before starting any exercise routine is to confer face-to-face at our office in Sacramento.

Bridging

  • Lay supine with knees bent, hip-width apart.
  • Raise hips slowly until a straight line is achieved between knees and chest.
  • Hold bridge for 5-10 seconds and slowly return to ground.
  • Repeat 5 times
  • Do not be discouraged if you cannot achieve the bridge at first. Many people need a few days to work their way up to it.

Wall squatting

  • Stand against wall with feet in front of body by about 12 inches.
  • Keep back straight, flex stomach muscles and lower body into a squat.
  • Squat as far as you can, with the intention of your thighs being parallel to the ground.
  • Hold 5 seconds then reverse the motion.
  • Repeat 10 times


At Espinosa Family Chiropractic, we love seeing people live pain free lives. It is a privilege of our job that we can help in this endeavor. For help creating a routine that incorporates stretching and exercise that strengthen the structurs and muscles of the back, give our office a call today.

Dr. Raymond Espinosa, D.C. 

headache

Sinuses play a larger role in our lives than they are often given credit for. Like many functioning parts of the body, we don't pay them attention until they give us grief. Sinuses are located throughout the head: in the cheeks, the nose and the forehead. They are air-filled sacs or cavities that drain mucous from the nasal passageways: so, when they get blocked up, mucous builds creating a veritable breeding ground for bacteria that can lead to infection. 

The kind of congestion associated with sinus problems often leads to headaches, with presenting symptoms of pressure in the sinus regions, feelings of stuffiness and full ears that feel likely to pop. They are usually worse in the morning, after you have spent the night lying down, giving them even less chance to drain. 

So, how does this relate to chiropractic? Often, misalignment of the cervical vertebrae can interfere with the nerve communication to the sinuses. We correct any presenting subluxation and employ other methods like localized tapping to encourage the sinuses to drain. 

Anyone who has lived with chronic sinusitis knows how much of thorn it can put in their side. Along with chiropractic treatment, we encourage people to get moving, as exercise helps to improve circulation and clear out the sinuses further. Dietary considerations include consuming ingredients that contain anti-inflammatory properties and staying fully hydrated.

Dr. Raymond Espinosa, D.C.

core

How much benefit are you actually reaping from your daily crunches? The lumbar region of the back is the main support for your entire body: it makes sense that keeping the surrounding musculature strong and healthy will boost the spine’s longevity. The core is a complex series of muscle groups that plays a role in almost every aspect of human movement, no more so than in the mechanics of the back. The core is used for stability and force transfer across the body, and force production is actually a tertiary function. This leaves me asking why so many people focus on crunches as the sole method to improve core health?

Core stability is the ability of the muscles to control the force we produce and therefore, a stable, strong core will be the one that inoculates us against injury. Core stability movements such as planking, side planking and deadlifting are a better metric for core strength than the number of crunches you can perform.

For those looking to improve their core muscles to make an impact on the overall health of their back, including the prevention of injury, a calculated approach must be applied. This is where we can help at Espinosa Family Chiropractic: we can put together a plan that develops the core as a stabilizer rather than a force producer, thereby increasing the longevity of your spine.

Dr. Raymond Espinosa, D.C.