By wey001, Mar 14 2016 08:09AM

A stiff neck is one of the most common complaints people come to chiropractors with. Most likely you have experienced a stiff neck or tenderness when pressing around the muscle of your neck.

And no wonder! An adult head weighs between 10-14 pounds, or around 5 kilos. To put that into perspective, at the upper end, this is the weight of a bowling ball! This gives a good indication of how strong your neck muscles must be and the demand that is constantly placed upon them.

There are number of things that can cause a stiff neck. The most common is strain or sprain. This kind of damage tends to occur to the levator scapula, the muscle connecting your neck to your shoulder. This can make it uncomfortable for you to turn your head from side to side, up and down, or even tilt it from side to side.

Most people notice a stiff neck first thing in the morning after waking. This is not a surprise, since a muscle sprain or strain can occur simply from holding your neck in an unusual position for a sustained period of time. People who sleep on their fronts with their head effectively forced to one side for around 8 hours are some of the most frequent sufferers! Stiff necks following sleep can also be caused by using an improper pillow; one that is too high or too flat and does not adequately support the neck.

As well as these common nocturnal causes of neck stiffness, our day jobs could also be to blame. Holding your neck too far forward when staring at a computer screen during the day can place undue stress on the neck muscles. The same goes for watching television and using mobile devices.

Aside from these common causes, neck pain can also be caused by injury. Whiplash is a neck injury caused by a sudden movement of your head in any direction. It often occurs after a sudden impact such as a road traffic accident. The vigorous movement of your head can overstretch and damage the tendons and ligaments in your neck. As well as neck pain and stiffness, whiplash can cause tenderness in your neck muscles, reduced, painful neck movements and headaches.

The good news is that neck stiffness is not usually serious and soreness can go away within a few days. The better news is that chiropractic adjustment can help to stimulate the healing process and correct any misalignments that can be contributing to pain.

If you know someone suffering with a stiff neck, please share this article with them so that they can make changes to reduce discomfort.

Weymouth Chiropractic Clinic

Tel: 01305 768393

By wey001, Oct 24 2014 10:58AM

Researchers say painkiller is no better than placebo despite being frequently prescribed for condition

Paracetamol does not help to relieve lower back pain despite it being a commonly prescribed treatment, according to new research.

A study from Australia, published in the Lancet, has found that the painkiller is no better than a placebo at aiding recovery from or reducing the pain linked to an ailment that afflicts 26 million Britons.

The associate professor Christine Lin, of the Oxford-based George Institute for Global Health, the

senior author of the paper, said people with back pain would be better off being as active as possible, avoiding bed rest, using heat wraps or heat packs and considering spinal manipulation.

In the study 1,652 adults in Sydney with acute lower back pain and an average age of 45 were given paracetamol three times a day for four weeks, or when they needed it, or a placebo.

The average length of time it took them to recover was almost the same for all three groups: 17 days for the two groups taking paracetamol and 16 days for those on the placebo. The painkillers yielded no benefit in terms of relieving short-term pain or disability or improving sleep or quality of life.

The findings should make medical bodies think again about their "almost universal endorsement of paracetamol as the first-choice painkiller for low back pain", the authors said.

Dr Tim Salomons, a pain expert at Reading University who recently showed that cognitive behavioural therapy can help treat chronic pain, said: "One of society's most trusted pain relief drugs has been shown to not improve recovery times in lower back pain, an extremely prevalent disorder. If the drug is not doing what it is being prescribed to do, pain patients might be better off without."

By wey001, Jul 3 2013 07:00AM


Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone controlled by light exposure that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle. Melatonin production is controlled by light exposure. Your brain should secrete more in the evening, when it’s dark, to make you sleepy, and less during the day when it’s light and you want to stay awake and alert. However, many aspects of modern life can disrupt your body’s natural production of melatonin and with it your sleep-wake cycle.

Spending long days in an office away from natural light, for example, can impact your daytime wakefulness and make your brain sleepy. Then bright lights at night—especially from hours spent in front of the TV or computer screen—can suppress your body’s production of melatonin and make it harder to sleep. However, there are ways for you to naturally regulate your sleep-wake cycle, boost your body’s production of melatonin, and keep your brain on a healthy schedule.

By wey001, Jul 1 2013 07:25AM

Having a poorly fitting bra can be a real pain in the back for many women. Weymouth Chiropractic Clinic has some good tips to help.

According to Tim Hutchful from the British Chiropractic Association “Bras are like suspension bridges, you need a well engineered bra so your shoulders don’t take all of the strain and end up doing all of the work; spreading the load is important. Bras that don’t fit will affect the shoulders and chest and may cause back pain as you get older. It is so important to make sure a bra gives you enough support as possible. The message must be to get properly fitted for a bra and replace old ones when they start to lose their supportive properties ”.

The British Chiropractic Association first looked at this issue in 2008 when 47% of women who said they had suffered from back pain at some point in their life claimed that their breast size was a factor in their posture

Despite the potential long term consequences of wearing the wrong size bra, women do not get properly measured because they are embarrassed or just don’t have the time. In the 2008 survey, 77% of those women who got professionally measured discovered that they had been wearing the wrong sized bra!

Important things to look out for include:

The underband is riding up

- Lift up your arms to see if the underband is tight enough. Check that the underwire is still fitting on the body. If you are still unsure, here’s how to judge: the underband should fit firmly against the body so that it does not slide around or move away from the chest as you go about your daily activities.

The shoulder straps are digging in

- The underband of a bra provides the majority (80 per cent) of support for the breasts, with the straps providing just 20 per cent. If the bra straps are digging in it could be because the underband is too loose and you are over adjusting the straps to feel supported. When you do this the straps pull the bra up at the back, which is another tell-tale sign that the band is too loose –in this case we recommend that you try a smaller band size. Alternatively, you may just need to loosen the straps.

The centre fold is lifting away from the body

- The centre front should lie flat against the body. If it doesn’t, this could be a sign that the cups are too small, causing the breasts to push the centre front away.

The back band is over stretched

- Look at your back straps: they should either be parallel to each other, or converge in a slight V-shape at the back. If they are too far apart at the back (an upside down V), it could mean that your bra band is too small and overstretching. (It is possible, however, that this is simply the design of the bra, so look for other clues such as the back band digging in uncomfortably.)

If you think that your bra is fitting poorly then visit any well respected underwear retailer to have yourself professionally measured, fitted and advised. It could be that it makes the world of difference.

By wey001, Jun 30 2013 07:57PM


Getting in sync with your body’s natural sleep–wake cycle—your circadian rhythm—is one of the most important strategies for achieving good sleep. If you keep a regular sleep schedule, going to bed and getting up at the same time each day, you will feel much more refreshed and energized than if you sleep the same number of hours at different times. This holds true even if you alter your sleep schedule by only an hour or two. Consistency is vitally important.

Set a regular bedtime. Go to bed at the same time every night. Choose a time when you normally feel tired, so that you don’t toss and turn. Try not to break this routine on weekends when it may be tempting to stay up late. If you want to change your bedtime, help your body adjust by making the change in small daily increments, such as 15 minutes earlier or later each day. Wake up at the same time every day. If you’re getting enough sleep, you should wake up naturally without an alarm. If you need an alarm clock to wake up on time, you may need to set an earlier bedtime. As with your bedtime, try to maintain your regular wake–time even on weekends. Nap to make up for lost sleep. If you need to make up for a few lost hours, opt for a daytime nap rather than sleeping late. This strategy allows you to pay off your sleep debt without disturbing your natural sleep–wake rhythm, which often backfires in insomnia and throws you off for days. Be smart about napping. While taking a nap can be a great way to recharge, especially for older adults, it can make insomnia worse. If insomnia is a problem for you, consider eliminating napping. If you must nap, do it in the early afternoon, and limit it to thirty minutes. Fight after–dinner drowsiness. If you find yourself getting sleepy way before your bedtime, get off the couch and do something mildly stimulating to avoid falling asleep, such as washing the dishes, calling a friend, or getting clothes ready for the next day. If you give in to the drowsiness, you may wake up later in the night and have trouble getting back to sleep.

Tip number 2 on it's way over the next few days......