Inversion Therapy and Inversion Tables: What’s the Real Score?

A few weeks ago, I accompanied a friend to buy an inversion table. While the contraption is not new to me, I still found it intriguing.

I never thought of my friend as someone who has chronic back pain. And when it comes to managing back problems, an inversion table is often one of the last things that will enter my mind.

Nevertheless, I helped my friend look for inversion tables to buy in Australia. At the same time, I decided to find the real score about inversion therapy and inversion tables.

The Idea behind Inversion Therapy

Inversion therapy has been around for many decades. It is one kind of therapy wherein traction is applied to increase the space between individual spinal discs. This will help relieve the pressure on the disks and the nerve roots within.

The person undergoing inversion therapy will be in an upside down position – her head lower than her feet. Gravity pulls on the spinal discs so that the gaps between them also increase. This is what relieves pressure and lead to a reduction in back pain.

Inversion Tables and Back Pain

Inversion tables are neat contraptions that can help relieve the pressure on the spinal column. What you do is you lie down on a bed and turn on a handle to put it in an inverted position.

This way, your back is still resting on the bed or table. It is unlike other inversion therapy modalities that do not provide support for the back.

As you lay upside down, the pressure within the spinal column eases up. This leads to a reduction in the irritation of the nerve roots. Consequently, you should be able to feel instant relief from back pain.

But then, here’s the thing. I found out that inversion therapy may not provide long-term relief of back pain. It may be good for short-term back pain relief. But if you’re looking for pain relief that lasts longer, then inversion therapy is not the answer.

The reason is simple. Pain relief exists only insofar as you remain in an inverted position. This means that you are standing upside down. This is the only way you can relieve pressure off of the nerve roots and spinal discs.

However, you cannot sustain this position for long periods because of the effect of gravity on the blood rushing to the brain. As such, as soon as you go back to the upright position, then the pressure in the discs will build up again.

Risks Involved in Inversion Therapy

There are also risks involved. I learned that there are a number of people who should never use an inversion table or any other contraption for inversion therapy. Individuals with hypertension, heart disease, and glaucoma should never use an inversion table.

As I mentioned earlier, you are in an upside down position. The flow of blood is towards the head. This will put a significant strain on the brain, the eyes, the lungs, and other vital organs that are not accustomed to such an orientation.

What’s the Real Score?

Inversion tables may be a good way to manage back pain by relieving pressure on the spinal column.

However, I don’t think we should view it as a miracle pill. Doctors can provide people like my friend with more appropriate treatments for their back pain.

Some may also recommend the use of inversion tables. My point is that we need to view inversion tables as a treatment methodology.

Hence, it should be under the guidance of our doctors. Or at least, let them know what you are trying to accomplish using such a device.

This entry was posted on June 13, 2019, in Health.

Physiotherapy Session – A Journey to Musculoskeletal Healing

PhysioI am not really what you might consider a health and fitness buff but I did have my share of going to the gym once in a while. I guess I was simply too busy with work that I can hardly squeeze any time to go to the gym. However, I found out that even working in the office can lead to some musculoskeletal problems which would require the expertise of a physiotherapist. Good thing there is a physical therapy Werribee clinic near my place so I can just go there anytime I need to.

I first visited the physiotherapy clinic when our company doctor recommended seeing a physiotherapist for the continued management of my chronic low back pain. He did gave me some pain medications but said that it is only temporary so our doctor recommended a slightly different approach.

My first concern was the physiotherapy costs as I knew it was a special kind of treatment that requires a more hands-on approach to my chronic low back pain as well as other musculoskeletal problems. But, given that my chronic low back pain sometimes makes me miss my day at the office or be less productive than I should, I thought it is going to be more practical to have my musculoskeletal problems managed now than suffer in the long run. So that was my mindset.

Visiting the Werribee physical therapy clinic is like taking on a journey of discovery. They would take a very comprehensive assessment of my health status but mostly about my pain experiences, problems in mobility, and range of motion as well as other health parameters. Sometimes I would be required to undergo several physiologic tests to determine the state of my muscle strength, muscle tone, and other characteristics of my musculature.

In my first-ever visit, the assessment phase was extensive. I had to supply them with the necessary health information including my family’s health and medical history. I also had to undergo several diagnostic and laboratory tests to help describe my current health status. It was nerve-wracking at first but totally liberating. I found comfort in the fact that, aside from my chronic low back pain, I was generally healthy. Unfortunately, my low back pain is severely affecting my ability to perform different tasks of daily living. And with it, my quality of life.

The assessment findings formed the backbone of the clinical diagnosis and the plan of care for me by the physiotherapists at the Werribee physical therapy clinic. The clinical diagnosis is important as it is the target problem that needs to be resolved. All treatment goals and objectives are developed and planned carefully to address this particular problem. The different clinical objectives will then form the backbone of what physiotherapy clinical interventions will work best towards the accomplishment of the objectives.

To manage my chronic low back pain, I was subjected to a variety of therapeutic modalities like alternating hot and cold compress applications, ultrasound, iontophoresis, and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. These physical therapy treatments are called passive therapeutic modalities as the patient does not do anything; the treatments are simply performed on the patient and not with the patient. The whole point in these treatments is to alleviate the pain, reduce the swelling or the inflammation, and/or improve overall mobility.

For example, I found out that iontophoresis is like getting an injection of an anti-inflammatory drug except that they don’t use a needle to introduce the medicine into the body; they use electrical currents. This is also almost similar to transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation whereby electrodes are introduced into the tissue to reduce the intensity of both acute and chronic pain. Hot and cold applications also have their benefits.

I also found out that ultrasound was not only for pregnant women but also used by physical therapists in the management of a variety of musculoskeletal conditions such as osteoarthritis, muscle strain, bursitis, scar tissue adhesion, and even rheumatoid arthritis, just to name a few.

Aside from these passive physiotherapy treatments, there are also active ones. Personally, I prefer the active treatments because I feel I am more empowered to manage my own low back pain. These treatment modalities are not sophisticated but they do work. It includes stretching and strengthening the muscles of my back as well as low-impact aerobic exercises to help reduce my chronic pain. At first I was sceptical. But after several sessions with the clinic, I felt a dramatic reduction in my chronic back pain. I never thought that these simple exercises were the key to living relatively free from pain.

I never would have learned all of these had I let my worries about costs dictate my decisions. I’m sure glad I made the right choice. Now, I am always looking forward to my physiotherapy sessions wondering what I will be learning next. It has been a wonderful journey of discovery and musculoskeletal healing.

This entry was posted on August 1, 2016, in Health.

How Food Supplements Can Benefit Health

food supplementOften we hear about certain herbal or vitamin supplement that cures chronic conditions or improves the quality of living of a person. Nonetheless, information concerning food supplements is often unclear or confusing. It is difficult to determine which provide real health benefits and which are providing false promises and running the danger of damaging the health.

What are Food Supplements?

A food supplement is a product that adds support to the food you consume. It contains certain dietary ingredients such as minerals, vitamins, herbs, and amino acids. They come in tablet, pill, capsule, or liquid form. There are diverse forms of nutritional or diet supplements. Mineral and vitamin supplements are diet supplements that have micronutrients to aid in the functioning of the body. Diet supplements have medicinal purposes as well. They support areas of the body such as the liver, skin, or bones.

Although a balanced diet offers a source of minerals and vitamins, taking diet supplements may prove an advantage in making sure that the body has all the nutrients it needs. Diet supplements that are not approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration are promoted as preventative measures for certain disorders. You can find these at some essential health foods store in Melbourne area.

To obtain the benefits of taking dietary supplements, it is best to seek the advice of a health specialist prior to taking any them to help prevent the adverse side effects. Below are some of the ways by which food supplements benefit health.

Improved Metabolism

After eating, the body would break down proteins, fats, and carbohydrates from your food, and likewise absorbs the nutrients. Absorption of these nutrients depends on the vitamins present in the body. Supplementing your foods with Vitamin B can aid in the prevention of vitamin deficiencies that could result to joint pain, skin disorders, anemia, and nerve damage. When the body metabolism slows down, fats tend to accumulate in some parts of the body resulting to additional body weight. Through food supplements, such as fiber, the breakdown of food follows a normal pace where toxins and unwanted fats are eliminated from the body. Improvement in metabolism therefore boosts the functionality of the digestive system as well other vital organs in the body.

Promotes Maintenance and Repair of Tissues

Consuming food supplements may likewise help in the maintenance and repair of tissues, processes that transpire all through life. The everyday activities place strain on tissues, and cells in the body generate proteins that contain new tissues to substitute the damaged and the old tissues. Any defects in the maintenance and repair of tissues result to diseases, including osteoporosis that evolves from bone wasting. This typically happens as the person ages. You can have proper growth of the tissue as well as the strength of the bone by taking Vitamin D and calcium. Food supplements speed up the healing process of wounds, cuts and lesions as caused by accident or surgery. Examples of these supplements are: vitamin C with collagen protects cells from damage; Bromelain reduces muscle and tissue swelling; Rutin protects the blood vessels and prevents bruising; Grape seed extract combined with vitamin C help build new blood vessels, strengthen the cell membranes and prevent scarring in the tissues.

Disease Prevention

Diet supplements may help in the prevention of certain diseases such as cancer. Essential vitamins, such as Vitamins A, C, as well as Vitamin E, function as the body’s antioxidants. They work by balancing chemicals known as the free radicals. These chemicals trigger oxidative damage in the cells. According to the National Cancer Institute, oxidative damage promotes the development of cancer. While research on the impacts of antioxidant supplements in cancer prevention proved to be inconsistent, taking moderate amounts of these antioxidants may be beneficial to the health.

food supplement 2There are various diet supplements available in the market today. However, it is advised that prior to purchasing them, make sure they are TGA approved. Furthermore, supplements should not be perceived as medium of cure. They only serve as an add-on to food in case some nutrients are missing. Food supplements can be beneficial to the body especially when taken in the right amount and frequency. Hence, the best way to ensure safety is to seek advice from a physician.

This entry was posted on August 18, 2015, in Health.

Clinical Pilates Great for Rehabilitation

Clinical PilatesPilates is one of the most effective exercises ever created, helping people lose weight and – more importantly – strengthen their core muscles for better overall body functioning. Clinical Pilates is very much like the exercise except that it is used for managing certain medical conditions. To get to know it more, read on.

Clinical Pilates: An Overview

Developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s, this exercise targets the deep muscles of the abdomen and the spine. Because those two are its main focus, it helps to improve not just central core stability but also posture. Its difference with other exercise regimen is that special apparatuses are used in facilitating physical strength. As a result, flexibility in posture, muscular endurance, balance and coordination and mental awareness are enhanced. Through Clinical Pilates, emphasis on the following body parts, inner and outer thigh, lower back, obliques and abdomen.

What makes it amazing, besides its effects in the body, is that it follows eight key principles. These are the following:

  • Concentration
  • Centering
  • Breathing
  • Isolation
  • Routine
  • Precision
  • Control and
  • Flowing Movement

Everyone who tried Pilates in the past knows exactly what it can do for and your body. You just need to look at all the before and after photos of those who religiously do Pilates. Here are just some of it:

  • Improves posture as well as stability
  • Increased coordination and control muscle
  • Firmer and flatter abdominal muscles (always a great plus point!)
  • Increased flexibility and muscular strength
  • Overall toned body

Physical Therapy practically works on those same principles, hence the incorporation of the exercise in Physiotherapy.

Clinical Pilates as a Rehabilitation Modality

Like other modes of physiotherapy, this specific adaptation has been very helpful for those who are suffering from general back pain, neck pain and to those who have been treated and are recovering from injury. But for a clearer picture, we have a short listing of all its benefits below:

  • Enhanced breathing control can one alleviate pain and keep it at bay.
  • Exercises can aid in rehabilitation, especially when it comes to restoring the motion and movement of the affected body part.
  • And because said body part is getting the strength it needs from the exercises provided, this is a great way to prevent injuries from happening again.

Patient Education: A Must Have

The great thing about Physiotherapy and all the other kinds of treatment methods under it is that it involves the patient in the whole treatment process. The very same thing applies to Clinical Pilates. A day’s session with your physiotherapist will end with him giving you advice on self-management which is very important as well.

Is Clinical Pilates Right for You?

Pilates, especially the one used for Physiotherapy, is very much advantageous for those who need it. But it’s not a generic tool. One kind of exercise cannot be used for all. The best way to determine if you are fit for this kind of system is to seek advice from a professional

Like other Physiotherapy sessions, it is important that the therapist diagnose the problem of the patient first before selecting the right exercise. This will ensure not just effectiveness of the procedure but optimal results. It will also minimize the possibility of aggravating the injuries sustained by the patient before.

Choose Capital Physiotherapy!

Although having massage at a spa salon can be relieving, it is still more advantageous to be treated by an expert. When a professional Clinical Pilates instructor attends to your condition, that specific health problem is targeted with the correct remediation. Some masseuse may have carried out the wrong technique and this can possibly make your condition worse. Knowledge in physiotherapy is always significant.

Some people think that Physiotherapy is merely some sort of massage and exercise therapy combined, and that anyone can work on this. But that is a huge misconception which, if you continue to believe in, will cause more problems than what you first have.

The same is even truer when you are looking for someone who can help you with Clinical Pilates. While there are similarities between the exercise and the Physiotherapy adaptation, there are still distinct differences. If you are getting this for rehabilitation, make sure that you find the specialist who can actually help you. You can trust Capital Physiotherapy.

This entry was posted on June 26, 2015, in Health.

The Surprising Benefits of a Massage

If you are enticed by the idea of relaxing on a table while proficient hands work out all of the kinks and soreness from your muscles, it might be time for a massage. While you regularly anticipate this procedure to work out soreness and stiffness, there are several other astonishing advantages to such a pampering treatment.

Solve Postural Pressure

In the event you spend a big portion of your day in a single form of task, including standing or sitting, your body will really experience major postural strain with time. Postural pressure usually changes one particular region, such as the shoulders and neck or the pelvis and hips. As time passes, postural strain may cause pain and weakness in these areas. To fight against this progression, get a regular massage to work muscles that are affected.

Enhance Circulation

A massage can enhance both blood circulation and lymphatic circulation. You relax as powerful hands manipulate the muscles and soft tissues of your body. With this particular relaxation, your body releases valuable compounds that transport oxygen and nutrients to your waiting muscle cells. In turn, these muscle cells become fitter and stronger, which suggests that they can begin working. As your circulatory system works better, you will see reduced swelling in your body.

Lift Your Mood

The tensions of the day can cause stress and maybe even depression. Muscle manipulation can be an effective instrument, while many people may turn to discuss therapy or drugs to fight these negative dispositions. You are going to relax as a therapist works to unkink your tight muscles. After a session, it is not atypical to walk out feeling relaxed and happier because of decreased anxiety levels.

Resolution Tension Headaches

If a wrench is thrown in your day, a professional therapist working in your trigger stages could help. These trigger points can be found on the head, neck, face, especially behind the ears, on the brow, and in the temples. Chronic tension headache pain can be relieved by pressure.

Sleep Better

Slumber may be due to stress or elusive for a lot of individuals, either because of pain. For those who have difficulty falling asleep or remaining asleep, try this treatment to enhance your sleep patterns. When tension and pressure are interfering with sleep, hormones could be the perpetrator. Serotonin levels can raise in our bodies, which raises melatonin, also. As these hormone levels enhance and equalize, the entire body’s natural circadian rhythms slumber and rest comes more easily.

Enhance Well-Being and Increase Resistance

A poor immune system can make a mess of your general well-being. High-pressure levels regularly lead to ill health, either as a result of nutritional or slumber problems or as the body cannot fight off disease efficiently. Regular massage can improve the entire body’s immune response to bacteria by increasing capability that is cytotoxic. In turn, T cells will naturally drop in quantity, which in turn raises resistance.

5 Simple Tips for Neck Pain Care

At the start of your day, you think about all of the things which you needed to achieve. Then all of a sudden, you believe something isn’t correct about your neck. But then you realize it is not the look and the pain begins to thump your head or even all over your system when you transfer it sideward.

Yes, neck pain may be extremely nerve-racking occasionally no matter how much you try. You want to take the pain away immediately. You simply can not because you have to go through lots of things like placing a heat or ice pack on it which you should do for at least 15-20 minutes every 2-3 hours. Perhaps even getting a pain massage, doing stretching or strengthening exercises and a lot more.

Nevertheless, the bigger issue is you have plenty of work to do and following those home remedies could just be a waste of time for you. Believing that getting the job done is a lot more significant than spending the remaining part of the day doing or using treatments to your neck.

So you just merely dismissed the pain since you believed you could manage it but then you can hardly deny the reality that it makes everything worse and it is beginning to interfere with things. Your day just got destroyed due to a health state that, believe it or not, could be prevented in the first place.

Astonishingly, you can help fight neck pain and never let this state occur again in manners that are straightforward. Simply follow these practical as well as straightforward neck pain care tips and you will not have to endure it for one week, the remainder of the day or worse.

1. In the event you are driving or working in front of the computers, take regular breaks.

Remember that if you are working, keep your head back over your spinal column. By means of this method, it’ll allow you to reduce neck strain that results in neck pain. More significantly, avoid clenching your teeth as much as possible. Additionally, strive not only to stay on one spot for quite a long time. Take time to do other things which will force you to roam around or to get up.

2. Avoid slouching.

Occasionally when we’re tired, we have a tendency to slouch. To prevent doing this, constantly keep everything on your own eye level. Constantly lean in your back and ensure that it is supported, keep both of your feet on the earth, and rest your shoulders. Additionally, avoid attempting not keeping your head forward when you’re typing something because you will not even know that you’re slouching.

3. When someone phones, prevent cradling your telephone underneath your shoulder.

If you’re the type of man whose been receiving lots of phone calls, using a headset gives you the capacity to keep from tucking the telephone on your shoulder. If you like you can also place the telephone on speaker.

4. Do some stretching.

Move your head gently from side to side, shrug your shoulders down and up, or use any exercise that makes your muscles extend. Additionally, taking a rest can help prevent neck pain.

5. Sleeping on your belly is bad.

Doing this puts plenty of pressure to your neck. Simply select a pillow the natural curves of your neck can manage, if at all possible. Sleeping on your side and back are the most effective positions that can give comfort to your neck and help you avoid having a neck pain the following day.

All these are the practical and easy ways to prevent neck pain. Indeed the motto, ‘prevention is always better than treatment’ never gets old.