How to Relieve That Annoying Stiff Neck
With computer and smartphone use at an all-time high, the prevalence of neck disorders is greater than ever. Many of us suffer from sore necks on a regular basis as a result of spending hours on our devices, whether at work or at home.
Staring at a screen all day might cause the neck muscles that surround the joints to deteriorate. As a result, they wear down and become overstressed. Continued use of computers, smartphones, and even driving can result in long-term neck dislocation. Neck pain may necessitate physical treatment.
Stretching your muscles throughout the day might help relieve neck pain. Take regular pauses when using your computer or smartphone. Avoid keeping your neck in a forward position for long periods of time. Here are some stretches you can do at work or at home:
- Stretch each side of your body 10 times from your ear to your shoulder.
- Push your shoulders back 10 times or more.
- Roll your shoulders 10 times or more in a repetitive motion.
- Return your head to your hands or the headrest of a chair and keep the position for 30 seconds or more.
- The stretches mentioned above are only a few simple stretches that may assist ease your sore neck.
Positions for Sleeping
Incorrect sleep posture is another prevalent cause of stiff necks. Have you ever woken up with a stiff neck that you couldn’t bend? You’re not by yourself. Take extra precautions to avoid sleeping on your stomach or with your head at an awkward angle. This will considerably lessen the likelihood of waking up with a hurting neck.
Simple Treatments for Minor Neck Pain
- Try sleeping without a pillow on a firm mattress. Lie as flat on your back as possible.
- Allow your spouse or partner to gently massage the aching spot.
- Exercise in slow motion, side to side, down and up, ear to ear. This will gently stretch the muscles in your neck.
- Apply heat or ice to the affected region. Use ice for the first two to three days, then only heat after that. A heating pad, compress, or a hot shower can be used to provide heat. When using a heat-related treatment, take care not to fall asleep.
If your neck pain or soreness persists, contact OC Sports and Rehab at our Foothill Ranch Physical Therapy, Placentia Physical Therapy, Mission Viejo Physical Therapy, or Lake Forest Physical Therapy locations.Read More
What is IT Band Syndrome and How Can it Be Treated?
The IT Band, also known as the iliotibial band, is a tough fibrous tissue on the outside of the leg. It extends from the hip all the way down to the knee. IT Band Syndrome or IT Band Tendinitis are terms used to describe problems with the IT Band.
IT Band tendinitis or syndrome does not appear suddenly, despite how it may appear. You will not fall down the stairs and then have IT Band syndrome the next day. It takes time to grow, and you will most likely overlook the early warning signs. It usually begins with a pang of pain on the outside of the knee. However, this niggle can be overlooked. And ignoring it gives it time to worsen and become more irritated. Ignoring it does not make it go away; in fact, it makes it worse.
The discomfort in the knee eventually becomes unbearable and cannot be ignored. You may be unable to run, climb stairs, cycle, or walk without limping. When the pain is strong enough, it can lead you to stop in your tracks. The issue is that if you go to your doctor and they do an X-Ray or an MRI, there is no problem that will show up on any of these that is related to IT Band Syndrome; you need someone like a physical therapist to feel the muscles to confirm that it is indeed IT Band syndrome.
What Causes IT Band Tendinitis?
- Type of footwear
- Weakness of muscles
- Tightness in areas of the body
- Running form
How Can IT Band Syndrome Be Treated?
- Footwear – When dealing with IT Band difficulties, the easiest item to adjust and address is footwear. You should always walk in good sneakers that are custom-fit to your foot. While there is inflammation, do not stroll in bare feet or flip-flops. Even around the home, you should walk in appropriate supportive running shoes to relieve as much pressure as possible from the IT Band.
- Strengthening– You must undertake activities to strengthen the weak muscles. There are exercises for each muscle group, but it is critical that you visit a physical therapist before beginning so that you can identify which muscles are weak and need to be developed before jumping in.The glue medius is a muscle that is frequently weak in people and plays an important role in hip stabilization. View our hip physical therapy videos for assistance with hip and abdominal strengthening exercises. Hip hikes are depicted in this video. You must stand on one leg, maintain your knee straight, and lower and then elevate your hip. Take your time with this. Repeat this 30 times on each side, aiming for three sets. You do not need to worry about gaining weight because your goal is to increase both endurance and strength. If you execute this correctly, you should feel a burn in your standing leg.The following strengthening exercise is simply a side leg kick. Maintaining independent balance while standing on one leg will also help strengthen the leg and relieve pressure on your IT Band. Standing on one leg, kick the opposing leg out to the side and back at a nearly 45-degree angle. This is also demonstrated in the video. This will also strengthen several hip muscles. You don’t want to add weight to this, so go slowly and deliberately. Doing three sets of 30 of these is a good way to begin strengthening, and if you can finish those sets without difficulty, you can progress to the next exercise.
- IT Band Stretching and Loosening – While there are no real helpful stretches for the IT Band, some people swear by the stretch where you put your hip against the wall. If you find that stretching helps you, keep doing it. Although unpleasant, the foam roller is the most effective technique to loosen up your IT Band. Foam rolling the IT Band is an effective approach to loosen it up and make it less painful over time. Many individuals quit foam rolling their IT Band because it is too painful, yet this is exactly when you should be doing it.When it is unpleasant to foam roll the IT Band, this indicates that there are many knots in the muscle, which can cause pain and be the single reason for the pain you are feeling. It is critical that you loosen them in order to feel healthier. Stretching will not help you relax these knots; only foam rolling can.Begin by resting on your side with the foam roller on the afflicted IT Band. Place the top leg in front of you on the floor. To relieve the most strain on the IT Band, place the top leg in front with the foot flat on the floor. This is demonstrated in the video. Pushing up on your hands and rolling your foot along the IT Band Make sure you don’t slide off the IT Band. When you’re rolling, make sure you stay on your side. It is simple to rotate and roll on the rear of your leg or to roll more on the front of your leg, but this will prevent you from rolling the IT Band. Even though it is less unpleasant and enticing, stay on the sidelines and apply the IT Band.
Contact one of our trained physical therapists to learn more about treating IT Band Syndrome.Read More
5 Steps to Improve Physical Activity Throughout Your Work Day
Many of the patients we meet at our physical therapy office hold desk jobs, yet it can be challenging to find the time to be active in sedentary settings. Unfortunately, a lot of people come to discover that their sedentary jobs have a negative impact on their health and ability to execute their jobs.
Do you need advice on how to enhance your physical activity? Check out these practical suggestions from our hardworking team of physical therapists!
- Addressing prior injuries. If you’re in discomfort, it’s challenging to concentrate and feel at ease at work. And even though we are aware that sitting for more than 7 to 8 hours a day is linked to health issues, the concept of boosting your physical activity can occasionally feel like a great challenge. You can identify and treat underlying health issues by speaking with a physical therapist. Our therapists don’t simply try to cover up the discomfort; they also utilize evidence-based, non-invasive approaches that help your body recover itself. Physical therapists may help you improve your posture, core strength, and other aspects of your health so you can operate more effectively both at work and outside of it. They can also give expert advice on ergonomic changes for your business.
- Use a pedometer. According to research, using a basic pedometer (you can get incredibly cheap models online and in sporting goods stores) can help you walk more each day. Such factual information can motivate you and encourage you to move more regularly than you might otherwise. You might even think about persuading a few coworkers to join the “pedometer club” and start a friendly competition to determine who can walk the most throughout an average workday or workweek!
- Use the workplace as a gym! Create strategies for moving more on and around your workspace. Can you park a little further away from the structure? Give a 10-minute walk around the school or neighborhood during your lunch break? lieu of using the elevator, use the stairs? Instead of sending an email or text, why not take a walk down the hall and talk to your coworker or employee?
- Drink plenty of water. Drinking plenty of water while working has several advantages, including maintaining the health of your tissues and joints, increasing focus, reducing headaches, and, yes, increasing the frequency with which you need to leave your desk to use the restroom.
- Perform quick workouts throughout the day. Stop what you’re doing at least once every hour and take a few minutes to perform some basic stretches or exercises. These can be completed in your office’s solitude or even in public (hey, maybe you’ll motivate your coworkers!). Ask a physical therapist to create a customized program for you that will take into account your unique demands and work requirements.
To find out more contact our Foothill Ranch Physical Therapy , Placentia Physical Therapy, Mission Viejo Physical Therapy, or Lake Forest Physical Therapy locations.Read More
A Physical Therapist’s Role in Chronic Pain Relief
In the United States alone, there are more than 100 million people who suffer from chronic pain. Therefore, if you have chronic pain, you are not alone.
Standard painkillers have so many undesirable side effects that you can’t rely on them to completely treat your pain, leaving you to wonder whether you’re just doomed to suffer from it.
Fortunately, there is another approach that might work. Chronic pain has been demonstrated to be effectively treated by physical therapy. You might be able to drastically lessen your discomfort with the appropriate treatment strategy.
How can a physical therapist assist in easing my chronic pain?
- TENS, Ice Therapy, Heat Therapy
Physical therapists can manage your current discomfort using a range of strategies at their disposal. To assist reduce inflammation and lessen some of the pain you’re experiencing, they can utilize techniques like transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), hot and cold therapies, and more. Additionally, these treatments can enhance your body’s capacity for healing.
- Safe Movements
Most people are not completely conscious of how they move during daily activities. You can be causing your chronic pain by bending over, lifting, walking, running, sitting, or moving in some other way. Your pain can be considerably reduced by learning how to fix the problems with your movements. Your physical therapist will examine you during your initial visit and monitor how you perform various movements, such as walking, to look for any potential issues. Once they have identified the problem areas, they can show you how to fix them to prevent unintentionally making your chronic pain worse.
- Flexibility Improvement
Enhancing your flexibility might also aid with pain relief. When you have an injury, it is typical for your body to try to compensate for the discomfort in some way. This can result in undesirable movement patterns that you might not even be aware of. The way your body adjusts to the injury may be helpful at first, but over time it will cause damage to other sections of your body. You are probably going through this type of situation if you feel particularly constrained or locked up in some way. Your body can be slowly relaxed through physical therapy, allowing you to resume healthy movement. Your physical therapist will collaborate with you to reduce the stress on your body so that it can move properly and to strengthen the muscles around the joint so that you can continue to use the proper motion patterns.
- Strength Training
Your physical therapist could give you some exercises to strengthen your muscles and soft tissues depending on your condition. Given that exercise can be difficult in and of itself, especially initially, it may seem weird that medical research advises getting stronger when you are in pain. But there are valid reasons to make an effort to fortify you. Pressure on nerves in your joints, such as your spine, knees, hips, elbows, or other joints, is frequently the source of persistent pain. Strengthening the muscles around those joints will improve their ability to support you, relieving some of the pressure on your nerves.
What should I know about chronic pain?
Some people experience chronic pain in the absence of any prior injury or visible signs of physical harm, such as a sprained back or a significant infection, or there may be a continuing cause of pain, such as arthritis, cancer, or an ear infection. Elderly people with persistent pain often have these conditions.
Headache, low back pain, cancer pain, arthritis pain, neurogenic pain (pain brought on by damage to the peripheral nerves or the central nervous system itself), and psychogenic pain are some of the common complaints associated with chronic pain (pain not due to past disease or injury or any visible sign of damage inside or outside the nervous system).
A person could have two or more chronic pain syndromes that coexist. These ailments can include vulvodynia, endometriosis, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, interstitial cystitis, chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia. If these illnesses have a common cause, it remains unknown.
Find relief from your ongoing pain today
We want you to know that if you’re dealing with chronic pain, we’re here to support you. Our physical therapy staff can create a customized treatment plan to help you manage your pain and enhance your quality of life. Do not hesitate to get in touch with OC Sports and Rehab right away to arrange a consultation!Read More