Orthopedic Associates' Blog

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Orthopedic Associates' Blog


Good Posture & Your Spine Health
Good Posture & Your Spine Health
“Sit up straight! Don’t slouch,” scolded mothers and grandmothers for generations, and at dinner tables all across the nation, children’s eyes all rolled together. It turns out that Mom and Grandma were onto something. Good posture does help portray an image of self-confidence, it looks nice, and it enhances physical performance. You don’t see anyone slouching when you’re watching athletes compete in the Olympics or celebrities walk down the red carpet at the Oscars. Posture and Orthopedic Health Posture plays a large role in the overall health of your spine. In orthopedics, we consider posture the way that your muscles, joints, and skeleton work together to hold your body upright. Your spine is a complex system of muscles, ligaments, and bones, and it has an incredible range of motion. Having such a great range of motion is certainly an advantage, but the downside is that there are lots of opportunities for things to go wrong. Poor posture is a leading cause of back pain, which, according to the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons, is one of the most common painful disorders ...

Am I suffering from a herniated disc?
Am I suffering from a herniated disc?
Herniated discs most commonly occur in the lower back region (lumbar spine herniations) or neck region (cervical spine herniations), but they are far less common in the upper back region (thoracic spine herniations). (Mayo Clinic) Herniated discs can be very painful, but often times, patients with herniated discs are unaware of their condition. There are certain symptoms to be aware of that may indicate whether you’re suffering from a herniated disc. Weakness or pain in your toes Herniated discs in your fourth and fifth lumbar segments (L4 and L5) can cause nerve impingement that may make it difficult to raise your big toe. If the herniation occurs between your fifth lumbar segment and first sacral segments (L5 and S1, respectively), you may experience difficulty or even pain standing on your toes. Leg Pain Leg pain, or “sciatica” as it’s sometimes called, can be the leading sign of a herniated disc. Research shows that “approximately 90% of herniated discs occur at L4-L5 and L5-S1, causing pain in the L5 or S1 nerve that radiates down the sciatic nerve.” (Spine Health) If you have a ...

Four office chair stretches to relieve back pain
We’ve all been there before: you’re midway through your workday hunched over a computer screen when you straighten up in your office chair. Ouch! A sharp twinge or a dull ache lets you know your back is suffering from poor positioning. You need to stretch out your back muscles and loosen the negative pressure before that small ache turns into a big-time problem. Eight out of 10 adults will suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. (NIH) As common as back pain may be, you don’t have to be a victim. Here are five stretches you can perform in the comfort of your office chair to relieve tension, soothe back pain, and help protect your spine during a long work day. Self-Hug Just as the name suggests, it’s time to give yourself a big hug. Wrap both of your arms around your shoulders like you’re giving someone a hug and grab the back of your shoulders with your hands. Take a few deep breaths allowing the shoulder blades to expand and contract. This relieves tension between your shoulders and ...

How bad posture affects your spine (and exercises to correct it!)
How bad posture affects your spine (and exercises to correct it!) Did you know that lower back pain is the single leading cause of disability around the world? A recent study shows that over 31 million Americans currently suffer from lower back pain. (ACA) Although sitting at a desk all day may be a known cause of back pain, having poor posture causes more musculoskeletal disorders than we might realize. Warning signs of poor posture As our bodies age, it’s easy to let our spine contract with pain points, such as rounding the upper back and arching the lower back to accentuate the spine’s natural S-curve. There are several known signs of poor posture, including: Rounded shoulders Back pain Uneven wear patterns on the soles of your shoes (ex: your left shoe’s sole is significantly more worn-out than your right shoe’s sole) Head leans to either side or forward Bent knees when standing or walking Potbelly  Slouching, sleeping on your stomach, leaning too far to ...

Common Fall-Related Bone Fractures Among Elderly Adults
Whether it’s weather-related or in your everyday routine, a simple fall can mean significant danger and harm to an elderly adult. Slips and falls are some of the leading causes of bone fractures for the elderly. An estimated 87% of bone fractures among people 65 years and older are due to falls. (MedicineNet) Of these fall-related fractures, there are four most common fractures that elderly adults tend to experience from such mishaps. Hip An estimated quarter-million hip fractures happen every year among people over 65 years of age in the U.S. (CDC) Of these hip fractures, over 95% of them are caused by falling, often by falling sideways and landing on the hip joint. The added pressure of the full body weight and other aging factors, including osteoporosis, contribute to hip fractures. Femur (Upper-Leg Bone) Another more common bone fracture caused by falling is a broken femur, or upper leg bone. Because of the strength of the muscles and ligaments surrounding the femur, a broken femur can often be very serious. It may even result in a compound fracture in severe situations. The ...