What can we help?
There is evidence to suggest Chiropractic can help both long term (chronic) and short term (acute) back pain. Back pain can range from a general annoyance to an excruciating and disabling condition.
9/10 adults experience back pain at some point in their lives, and 50% of all working adults experience back pain at least once a year.*
Sciatica is a general term describing pain which travels down the leg and is produced by irritation or compression of the sciatic nerve. Like back pain, it ranges from mild to very painful with people experiencing tingling, numbness or muscle weakness alongside the pain.
The actual point where the nerve is getting injured is rarely where you feel the pain, most commonly in the low back or buttock area.
Migraines are a very common complaint when people come to see us, although many of those patients actually have cervicogenic or tension headaches. True migraines are usually felt as a severe, throbbing pain often felt at the sides or front of the head and the vast majority are only on the left or right, not both. These headaches regularly start in early adulthood, often causing nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and noise alongside the pain.
A textbook migraine is accompanied by an "aura", commonly described as a phase of visual changes such as flashing lights or spots in the eyes, or a feeling of nausea. However migraines can still appear with or without the aura and some people will only experience the aura and not the headache.
Due to the unpredictability of the migraine symptoms, they are often diagnosed when not actually there or undiagnosed when they are.
Neck pain can come from a multitude of causes, from prolonged poor posture and muscles strains to wear and tear in the spine. A single day won't go by without us seeing some sort of neck pain in our practices and we regularly deal with most mechanical causes without much hassle.
The most common cause of headaches is actually the structures in the neck. These headaches usually feel like they spread from the base of the skull up and over the head and can be felt around the eyes.
Neck-based headaches are often felt only on one side of the head but can be felt on both, especially like a "tight band" across the forehead. Patients commonly describe a dull achy pain however can feel a moderate or severe intensity.
This condition is an overuse injury affecting the muscles and tendons that protect and move the wrist, causing pain on the outside of the elbow The lateral epicondyle is a bony lump which is the attachment point for lots of muscles in the forearm and so can easily become inflamed with repetitive strain. It can be related to issues in the neck.
Contrary to it's title, tennis elbow can be caused by many other activities rather than tennis such as; DIY, decorating and gardening.
Sufferers may notice a weakness in grip strength or difficulty holding onto things.
Golfer's elbow or Medial Epicondylitis is a similar condition which causes pain on the inside of the elbow, with many of the same reasons for injury.
Frozen shoulder/adhesive capsulitis
Frozen shoulder is a complicated condition. Generally patients describe severe pain which gradually reduces as the shoulder becomes increasingly immobile.
While no one truly understands the cause, it can occur as a result of an injury, irritation of the muscles or tendons and is often seen in those with diabetes.
Frozen Shoulder is a very frustrating condition which can last months to years without intervention.
Fortunately, in our personal experience, there are a lot of people given this diagnosis who are actually suffering from one of the other shoulder conditions. Please come in and let us assess your shoulder, you may be surprised what we find!
Shoulder pain and dysunction
The shoulder joint is a complex structure, needing many muscles to work together in complete harmony to move and absorb shock well. We often see small and subtle changes of muscle strength or tension weakening the shoulder until injuries or repetitive strain occur.
Due to the complexities, there are a pantheon of diagnoses linked with the shoulder which affect the muscles, joints and ligaments in the area most , however most respond very well to manual and exercise therapies.
The most common shoulder injury is a rotator cuff tear or strain, usually limiting overhead movements or rotating the arm inwards with the thumb turning down. This generally responds well to our treatments.
Osteoarthritis is the diagnosis for "wear and tear", a normal ageing process which happens as the joint is used over time. In the hip, arthritis occurs when the cartilage is worn down gradually over time. Patients describe difficulty performing tasks such as walking, standing from a chair or bending to tie shoe laces. Many are surprised to find that the pain is most commonly felt in the groin or knee and not the outside of the hip or buttock.
We often see hip wear and tear on one side only, which implies that uneven pressure is going through the hips and pelvis which may be able to be corrected, taking the pressure off the painful hip without any surgery.
NICE guidelines indicate that successful management and treatment can occur with mobilisation and exercise rehabilitation. 'Learning to live with it' is not your only option.
Just like the hip, knee osteoarthritis occurs when cartilage in the knee wears away with repeated stress, often described as wear and tear. Over time pain and stiffness can gradually increase. While the pain often improves with rest, patients can find everyday activities increasingly hard.
As with all forms of arthritis, NICE guidelines recommend mobilising the affected joint and actually that gentle exercise often improve this condition. 'Learn to live with it' is no longer the accepted form of treatment.
Just like with the hip and other wear and tear, we will generally focus on improving the mobility of the joint, reduce muscle spasm and attempt to mechanically take pressure off the area.
The plantar fascia is the connective tissue across the sole of the foot, from heel to toes. When this is irritated you will get the diagnosis of plantar fasciitis or policeman's heel. Pain is most commonly located on the underside of the heel but can spread through the sole of the foot.
A common cause of this are functional problems in the foot which are often complicated by prolonged standing or carrying excessive weight. As with most functional and complex disorders, exercise therapy and movement training is often key.
Patello-Femoral pain syndrome
Many overuse or repetitive injuries are caused by subtle changes to the movement patterns of the limbs, and PFPS is no exception. Functional issues in the hip or feet will commonly cause the knee cap (or patella) to displace slightly from its central groove on the thigh bone (femur) and rub against the cartilage, causing irritation and inflammation.
This causes pain around the knee cap and is a very common reason for patients, especially runners, to come and seek help. Manual therapy has a good success rate for it, but the underlying functional problems will need to be addressed using exercise rehabilitation.
Joint Pain and tension
The human body is a very complicated and nuanced machine. We have 206 different bones, 360 joints where they fit together and around 640 muscles with which to move them about. As with anything this complex, we occasionally have issues with moving parts which we feel as achy joints or tense muscles.
As chiropractors we are well trained to spot these issues and use techniques and exercises to attempt to correct them. The symptoms people feel can be widespread or local, sharp or dull and chronic or acute.
No matter the issue, ask us today and we will be happy to give you a professional and honest opinion as to whether we can help.
Chiropractic can treat with some sports injuries. To decide whether your injury could be helped by chiropractic we would provide a detailed consultation and examination. Once a diagnosis has been made we can provide you with an appropriate treatment plan.
Problems that arise from sports injuries which chiropractic may be able to help with include general aches and pains as well as joint pain (including muscle spasm and cramps), cervicogenic headaches, rotator cuff injuries and shoulder complaints (dysfunction and pain), short term management of ankle sprains and plantar fasciitis, elbow pain and tennis elbow related to conditions of the neck and back.
*A.T. Patel, A.A. Ogle. "Diagnosis and Management of Acute Low Back Pain". American Academy of Family Physicians. Retrieved March 12, 2007.