By Dr. Michael Stewart
A lot of patients come to see us after suffering from some type of trauma, injury or accident. Many of these patients come to us suffering from neck pain, headaches, back pain, shoulder pain….and all sorts of other symptoms.
But what if you haven’t suffered from some type of trauma, injury or accident but still have the same symptoms as mentioned above. We often hear patients say: “I didn’t do anything”, “I always lift or bend that way”, “I must be getting old…” It is easy to see how a trauma can result in pain and discomfort – but what is happening when you really didn’t do anything to cause the problem.
In many of these cases it is a matter of SIT, STAND or SLEEP.
I often tell my patients that we live in a world of micro-trauma – minor everyday stresses that our bodies must deal with and adapt to. Our bodies often respond to stress the same way whether it is a minor or major stress – and when the stress is too great for our body to handle we end up with symptoms.
SIT: It has been said that SITTING is the new SMOKING – our bodies were not ideally created to be sitting as much as we do in modern society. Add on staring at a computer screen, reaching for a mouse or slouching in a “once size fits all” office chair and it is easy to see why more and more patients are seeking care in our office.
STAND: Our bodies are symmetrical – well at least they were designed that way. In our office we have the ability to measure how a patient stands – we can see the breakdown of weight distribution – left/right and front/back. Most people are amazed they are favoring one side so much. Watch people walk – can you see if one foot lands different than the other – do they walk crooked? Check an old pair of your own shoes – do the heels wear evenly?
SLEEP: “I always sleep that way…why is it bothering me now?” – well maybe because you always sleep that way….and it is causing stress to your body. Sleep should be easy – just lay your head down and 7-8 hours later you wake up refreshed and ready for the new day. Ever wonder why you toss and turn most of the night – why you regularly wake up and turn over – multiple times per night? If your body was totally relaxed and comfortable would you wake up and toss and turn through the night. Have you ever fell asleep and woke up “in the exact same position” and felt great?
Lots of questions – short on answers – stay tuned for some suggestions.
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