Physical pain is an essential part of the human experience; it’s the body’s protective alarm system. Its a subjective experience and one which is challenging to convey to other people. Especially if there are no obvious outward clues, our ability to tolerate pain is as individual as our fingerprints and shaped by many factors: genetics,… Read More Pain, does it need to hurt so much?
The word “core” and “core stability” sit deep in a sea of myth and inadequate understanding about human movement, even in health and fitness spaces. I say this as a comprehensively trained Pilates teacher, osteopath and clinical educator with lived experience managing a severe spinal injury.
The previous post; “Pain what’s really going on?” Discussed pain from a medical and scientific point of view. It aimed to give you an understanding of how pain can be categorised, the variety of words to describe pain, and the normal healing times, which may help people avoid slipping into persistent or chronic states. This… Read More Pain management, ways forwards
Fibromyalgia is a mysterious long-term condition that involves widespread chronic pain without a known cause; it’s more of a frustrating label than a diagnosis. Some people will eventually discover a specific reason, but in many cases; the condition appears to be triggered by a physically stressful event, such as an injury, infection or having a… Read More Fibromyalgia explained
Pain can a useful and potentially life-saving protection mechanism. You only have to touch something unexpectedly hot to appreciate that the resulting OUCH was helpful because it made you pull your hand away and prevent possible further injury.
Spinal stenosis is a common back condition where the nerve roots or the spinal cord become pinched or compressed because the spaces within the spinal canal narrowing. It affects men and women in equal numbers, and around 10% of the UK population is believed to be living with this condition.
As an osteopath, it’s routine to be talking with patients about sleep, especially if discomfort or pain is making it difficult to get to sleep. Any joint-related problem or health concern can be a factor that influences our choice of sleep position. The question that comes up most often is what position is best?
Back pain is common; 80% of people worldwide will experience at least one episode. It’s an often invisible condition that can affect anyone from *children to the elderly, but worldwide, only around 1% of cases are because of something sinister such as a tumour.
Restless leg syndrome is a nighttime condition of unpleasant sensations in the legs. This could be cramps, aching, pain, tingling or burning. Restless legs syndrome is also known as Willis-Ekbom disease, a common condition of the nervous system that causes an overwhelming, irresistible urge to move the legs.
Getting enough fibre in the diet is essential for health as research has shown that besides reducing constipation, it can help with weight management, may lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease and bowel cancer. Dietary fibre is a type of complex carbohydrates found in plant-based foods that our digestive system… Read More Dietary fibre, explained.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a long-term condition of the digestive system that causes episodes of abdominal cramps, bloating and changes in bowel movements. IBS is the name doctors give to a collection of otherwise unexplained symptoms relating to a disturbance in the digestive system and bowels habits. IBS is an illness that has no… Read More Irritable bowel syndrome
Pressure and stress are essential; they touch every aspect of our everyday life; helping us complete tasks, allowing us to learn new things and to be creative, and one is needed for our survival. There is an optimum level of pressure that brings about our best performance, allows us to take on new challenges hit… Read More Navigating the forest of life: Managing the stress response.
Coeliac disease is a lifelong autoimmune disease caused by a reaction to gluten. It affects one in 100 people. However, it is estimated that nearly half a million people are living with this condition undiagnosed.
Sitting below the sacrum at the lowest part of the spine is the coccyx, also known as the tailbone. It is a small triangular bone resembling a shortened tail and made up of 3 to 5 spinal bones or coccygeal vertebrae with disc-like ligaments.
Mindfulness and meditation are everywhere; it’s being offered as a cure-all for everything from IBS and low-self esteem to help pain management and depression. There is good science to confirm the benefits, and growing research shows that when people train to be more mindful, they are rewiring the physical structure of their brain, but what… Read More Calming the monkey mind
Welcome to 2019! I wanted the first entry of this new year to be about something significant, meaningful and potentially life-changing. This entry is about the benefits and power of touch.
The vagus nerve networks around the body like a super spy, reporting back to the brain secretly (subconsciously) on what’s going on in the body as part of our protective stress response, noticing facial expressions, and responding to people’s voices and monitoring our internal organs.
The vagus nerve is the leader of our inner nerve centre, also known as the 10th cranial nerve or cranial nerve X. It’s the longest of the 12 cranial nerves in the body, and has the most extensive distribution because it passes through the neck and chest into the abdomen. The vagus nerve controls the… Read More The vagus nerve, explained
Delayed-onset muscle soreness or DOMS is exercise-related muscle pain, which often peaks a day or two after the event. It is known as muscle fever, a beautiful exotic explanation to describe the distinctive muscle pain and soreness that nearly everyone experiences after intense or unfamiliar exercise. Muscle fever is a meaningful term because DOMS makes… Read More Delayed onset muscle soreness, explained.
Persistent and chronic headaches can be can affect every aspect of a person life; work, relationships, family and friends, and may disrupt social and travel plans at short notice. People living with frequent headaches are also at increased the risk of depression and other mood disorders.
Approximately 50% of UK adults will have a headache each year, most of these are not dangerous, but they can debilitate and sometimes be a challenge to describe; the pain may be generalised involving the whole head or affect one part of the face, head or eye. Symptoms can vary from sharp and throbbing to… Read More Headaches and head pain explained
Technology in all its forms is an increasingly integral part of daily life, most adults own and regularly use a smart device. They brilliantly allow us to work, shop, book holidays, listen to music, read books, watch movies, learn new skills, and catch up with friends and family on the go, wherever we happen to be.
Arthritis is any disorder that affects joints; it literally means inflammation within the joint itself. Symptoms include joint pain and stiffness and may include redness, warmth, swelling, and decreased the range of motion of the affected joints.
Our bones are “living tissue.” of continually renewing cells, blood vessels nerves, and minerals. Osteopenia and Osteoporosis are conditions in which this process is affected causing bones to become weak with a higher risk for fractures.
Hip problems are common, the cause may be apparent, like an injury that comes on suddenly while gardening, running for the train or playing sports. However, sometimes the reason is not as clear, as symptoms may come on gradually.
Last time I talked about the shoulder joint structure and briefly highlighted what can go wrong. Here is a look at some of the common problems that cause shoulder and arm pain in a little more detail
Shoulder problems are widespread; the shoulder is the most mobile joint in your body because the main shoulder joint (the gleno-humeral joint) is a ball-and-socket joint. It sacrifices stability for mobility, and for this reason can be vulnerable to injury, dislocation, muscle fatigue and degeneration due habitual poor posture. vulnerable to injury and habitual poor… Read More Shoulder problems
Modic changes are the name given to pathological changes that are present in the bones of the spine; this was first mentioned by Dr Michael Modic in 1988. Modic Changes is a ‘disease’ process, which is linked with spinal inflammation that has not been responsive to conventional treatments. It is also related to poor healing and… Read More Modic Changes and Back Pain
A herniated spinal disc is the most common cause many painful conditions, when this happens, the natural cushion between the vertebra of the spine is damaged or ruptured, causing the spinal disc to push out into areas usually occupied by nerves. Note; other terms for a herniated disc include; a slipped, ruptured, bulging or, protruding disc.… Read More Herniated spinal disc, explained
Ultimately, effective stress management requires and multidisciplinary approach especially for long term situations. The physical effects need to be addressed to allow for the lifestyle changes to make a difference.