Thinking of visiting a Chiropractor? What the New Patient Assessment Involves.

Going to a Chiropractor for an Initial Assessment can be a unique experience, you may even be a bit nervous as perhaps you’ve tried other forms of healthcare without success? You may have heard that Chiropractic is “alternative” or “complimentary.” Chiropractic is a separate, distinct and essential form of healthcare that has an enviable safety record. Even as you sit reading this now, thousands of people across the globe are leaving Chiropractic offices with a much needed spring in their step!  

If you are considering booking yourself in for a Chiropractic Initial Assessment, but you’re unsure of what it involves… 

 What happens at an Initial Assessment Appointment with Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend? 

  • Phase 1

    You arrive at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend, and after your warm welcome you will be asked to complete our health history form where you can outline your problems and ongoing health concerns. 

  • Phase 2

    Using a state of the art Space Federation approved spine scanning kit* (see below for more detail) imported from the United States, we take some readings of your spine to give us an idea of what your overall function is. After all, a 4 out of 10 pain for you, could be like a 6 or 7 out of 10 to somebody else. 

  • Phase 3 

    You are examined using relevant orthopaedic testing to determine where the symptoms are originating from. Additionally, there will be some neurological screening to make sure that all your nerves are functional and operating at a satisfactory level. Then we wrap it up with a question and answer session. 

 

The assessment usually takes just over an hour, however if multiple sites need examination it may take a bit longer. When the examination is concluded, this Bridgend Chiropractor then has some homework to do! It is then up to me to meet you at the next appointment having gone through all your results, armed with a diagnosis, techniques, advice, and where appropriate a plan of Chiropractic action that will help you to return to a more optimal state of function and help to reduce the pain symptoms quickly.  

The initial consultation, including our spinal scans, costs just £50, and is your route to a healthier, better you.  

All Doctors of Chiropractic in the UK must be registered with the General Chiropractic Council, in order to practice, they must also complete a bare minimum of 4 years of University training before that. Every year, all UK Chiropractors perform continuous professional development which is to ensure we are all up to speed on the latest techniques, evidence, and developments in the profession. This also allows us to specialise or focus more in a certain area, for example, like myself, postural correction. 

 

*our state of the art spine scanning technology includes: 

  1. ‘neuroPULSE’ Measures Adaptability – Heart Rate Variability: Heart Rate Variability (HRV) examines the impact of lifestyle stress while measuring adaptability. It plots the balance and overall activity of the autonomic nervous system 
  2. ‘neuroTHERMAL’ Measuring Organ Regulation:  Scans the entire spinal nerve system for regulation and balance. Detects areas of poor vasoconstriction and vasodilation control, showing altered autonomic control. Graphically pinpoints where painless stress is affecting the patient’s health. 
  3. ‘neuroCORE’ Measuring Postural Energy: The sEMG show how neuromuscular tension is associated with postures, subluxation patterns and overall exhaustion. Brings muscles, nerve tension and fatigue into the picture. 

Love Your Spine this Valentine’s Day!

**Valentine’s Offer! 50% OFF NEW PATIENT ASSESSMENTS**

Does your loved one suffer from back & neck problems? Sciatica? Headaches? Minor Sports Injuries? Why not give the gift of health!?

Usual price £45, NOW £22.50

Offer valid from Feb 14th – 28th 2018. To claim, quote ‘LOVE YOUR SPINE’. Tel. 01656 503514 

Bookings must be placed by 28th February 2018 but appointments can be made for a later date.

Chiropractic Bridgend Pancake Day!

It has been a busy time at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend recently. But the question on most of my patients lips has been, “are you having pancakes on Tuesday?” My reply, was “I shall be having pancakes with my wife and son in the morning, definitely!” 

So why are pancakes important? ‘Pancake day’ is the day immediately beforehealthly living chiropractor care Bridgend the start of lent. Also called Shrove Tuesday. The word shrove, is a variant of shrive meaning, absolve. The idea being that all your indulgent foods are used up before the start of lent. Years ago, people would go and confess their sins. So, what has this to do with a Chiropractor you may wonder? We are now in a new year, and wouldn’t we all like to make some improvements to ourselves, be that, leading a healthier lifestyle, or finally getting rid of that issue that has been causing all those pain symptoms in our back for the past 8 to 10 years? 

The latest developments in Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend demonstrate that Chiropractic care isn’t just good for back aches, and that there are a number of other positive effects too. As your Bridgend Chiropractor it is my pleasure and duty to share that people are reporting; more energy, better sleep, less pain, less headaches, better concentration, more activity in their daily lives. This is certainly encouraging feedback.  

So, with the rest of 2018 in front of us, and possibly several more weeks of winter, here are some tips from this Chiropractor of Bridgend: 

  • Dress yourselves and your little ones warm.  
  • Have yourself and your loves ones checked by a Chiropractor
  • Remember kids don’t regulate body temperatures like adults do. Put a hat on your baby or toddler! 
  • Stay active! The more lively your metabolism the better you’re going to feel. Movement is life everybody! 
  • If there is ice on the floor, take it slow in the car, or on foot. If you’re 3 or 4 minutes late, so what? The world shall continue spinning for those minutes anyway. Don’t risk your safety.  
  • And most importantly, eat those pancakes! 

 

Love Your Spine!… 

Because we are so close to Valentine’s day, it is Sandford Chiropractic’s great pleasure to announce to Bridgend, that we will be starting the “Love your spine” promotion.

Any bookings made between the 14th and 28th of February for a New Patient Initial Assessment, (which includes extensive full history,  neurological screening, orthopaedic examination, and use of our specialist technology to check your spine beneath the skin!) will be discounted by 50%, making it yours for just £22.50! The appointment itself doesn’t have to be in February if you have a lot on this month, as long as the booking for new patient initial assessment is made during this window, the discount applies and we’ll see you in March!  

Stay safe and warm! 

Is your baby having too much car seat time?

Using a car seat when not in the car and for too long can be bad for a baby’s developing spine.

At Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend, it is my honour and privilege to have a number of new mothers and new fathers under care here. But within the wider community there is something which new mums and dads need to pay attention to with their little one, and as your Bridgend Chiropractor, it is both my duty and responsibility to tell everybody I can what I know for the betterment of your offspring’s spinal health.  

Car seats have become a very popular method of transportation nowadays, and they are convenient. We can simply move the car seat straight from the car and onto the pram. The car seat however is what most chiropractors would term as a “necessary evil” and overuse of these seats can be detrimental to the development of your baby’s spinal curves. While sitting in a car seat, it keeps your baby’s spine from top to bottom in a C shape, which is the opposite to the natural curves which want to develop at the neck and low back. 

 

 What can be done to help? 

Of course, legally we must use a car seat in the car that has been fitted in accordance with the manufacturers instructions, this goes without saying and we at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend encourage everybody to follow the legal guidelines. But please mums and dads, do not overuse the car seat, ideally, stick to using the car seat for what it was intended, car journeys  – and that’s it.  

The “2 hour rule” should be followed, most manufacturers advise that a baby should spend no more than 2 hours in a car seat within a 24 hour period due to pressure on the developing spine,  and due to reduction of oxygen to the baby’s lungs. This is backed up by the British Medical Journal’s 2016 study titled “Is the infant car seat challenge useful? A pilot study in a simulated moving vehicle” So there really is no reason to use the car seat beyond the car, and you definitely do not want your baby sleeping in a car seat for too long.  

Now new guidance is coming out to suggest that if the baby is less than one month old, then they should be in the car seat for 30 minutes at most. If you are on a long journey you should stop every two hours and remove your baby from the car seat to be able to stretch and move about. 

So, wherever possible, we would always advise you not to push your baby around with the car seat attached to the pram. Always transfer the baby to their pram, lying down flat until they reach an age where they can sit up unaided and then move safely onto the next stage of your pram/pushchair.  

One last thing! 

One more observation this Bridgend Chiropractor has made! Babies cannot regulate their own body temperature until they are at least two years old and even then it’s still rudimentary control. Babies can lose heat out of their body four times quicker than an adult. So, this winter, and even in summer please remember… PUT A HAT ON YOUR BABY’S HEAD!  

Poor posture? Try a spinal orthotic with your Chiropractic adjustments.

Hello everybody its been a very busy couple of weeks here at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend. One of the main things my patients discuss with me is posture, and we’ve had a few success stories already. As a posture focussed Bridgend Chiropractor, my mission is to ensure I leave my patients with the best spine possible for pain free living and optimal function. 

I am now delighted to announce that Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend can, in addition to effective postural based chiropractic adjustment, supply our patients who want the best possible posture with some of the best spinal orthotics; Denneroll. These orthotics will complement your care within the practice and enhance results.  

The Denneroll’s are available for: 

  • Cervical spines (necks) 
  • Thoracic spines (upper back) 
  • And Lumbar spines (low back) 
  • Plus many more types! 

The best part of the Denneroll is that you don’t have to do anything except lie down for a few minutes. So what are the benefits of having good posture? 

  • Avoiding pain! A lot of people suffer greatly with pain due to a deteriorated posture. 
  • Good posture reduces wear and tear on your joints and connective tissues. Useful as we age! 
  • Good posture = better breathing. Bend right over and try and take a deep breath, its not easy to do. 
  • Proper posture can make you look taller and slimmer and will make you look confident. 

If you are somebody who is suffering from poor posture or you know somebody who is, then as a posture focussed Bridgend Chiropractor, we may be able to help you or your loved one overcome this issue. The government encourages us all to plan for retirement, Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend also encourages all to plan for retirement by considering their posture and how much better, and less painful old age can be with a good posture. Why would you want additional wear and tear, extra aches and pains, and a hump, none of these things growing old is mandatory, these things are optional. 

As the founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba, put it: “A good stance and posture reflect a proper state of mind.” 

Its National Breastfeeding Week!

This week marks the 25th year of World Breastfeeding Week, so we thought we should get involved and help spread the good word about the positive effects of Breastfeeding.  

Did you know that in Norway only 1% of infants had never received any breast milk with the rates of any breastfeeding, 95% at four weeks of age, 85% at four months of age and 80% at six months of age (WHO, 2012).  Compared to the UK where 81% of mothers had tried breastfeeding at some point, but only 34% were breastfeeding at six months and 0.5% at 12 months (BBC, 2016). That’s less than half of mothers here in the UK still breastfeeding at 6months compared to those in Norway.  

Countless studies have shown the benefits of breastmilk, but the full extent of the good it can do are still under research.  According to the organisation NCT, what we do know is: 

 

Breastfeeding benefits for babies 

  • Breastmilk is a living fluid and every mum’s milk is tailor-made for her own baby. It contains many ingredients which help a baby stay healthy, such as antibodies to fight germs and hormones that help your baby’s development. 
  • Babies who are breastfed are less likely to have ear or urine infections or get stomach bugs or chest infections. 
  • Babies who are breastfed are less likely to become overweight children. 
  • If your family has allergies, your baby is less likely to get eczema or a wheezy chest if they are breastfed. 
  • Fewer babies who are breastfed get diabetes in childhood. 
  • Premature babies who receive breastmilk have a lower risk of necrotizing enterocolitis (a potentially dangerous bowel disorder).  

Source: www.nct.org.uk/parenting/why-breastfeed 

 

But lets not forget about mum! She has grown a little miracle, gone through the physical trauma of giving birth, and then if mum is able or decides to – she produces breastmilk!  

Breastfeeding benefits for mothers 

  • Breastfeeding helps reduce the risk of developing certain types of ovarian and breast cancer. 
  • Mums who have breastfed have a lower risk of diabetes when they get older. 
  • Breastfeeding helps your uterus return to its normal size after birth. 

Source: www.nct.org.uk/parenting/why-breastfeed 

 

It’s a really tough time both mentally and physically, and it is important to note that some women, however keen they are to breastfeed, are unable to due to no fault of their own. It’s a personal choice, but one that should be an informed decision.  

In the Chiropractic profession we often see the after effects of the challenges of having a baby resulting in greater laxity of ligaments, altered pelvic alignment, and general aches and pains. So it is important to also have yourself checked by a Chiropractor (and ideally your baby too by a pediatric Chiropractor).

Your mobile device could be affecting your sleep. How to change your settings and improve sleep!

One of the things that I find I am discussing more and more both within Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend and with friends and family, is sleep. It seems the people of the county of Bridgend may be struggling to sleep well.

While Chiropractors normally concern themselves with back pain, neck pain and so forth, here at Sandford Chiropractic we believe that in order to maximise human potential we have to consider all facets of human health and wellbeing, and the effects of our daily routine.

I have posted before about how electronic devices could potentially be degrading our postures and health, now however those devices may be contributing to poor sleep due to the type of light on the screens.

So why is using a tablet or PC or phone and so on… potentially bad for our sleep? 

  • These devices are blue light enriched, and have more blue light than other forms of light.
  • Blue light is short wavelength and also contributes to eye strain when using devices at night.
  • Melatonin, put simply, is our sleep hormone. Blue light is shown to reduce melatonin affecting restful quality sleep.
  • Typically people exposed to blue light before bed take longer to wake up and are generally sleepier in the morning.
  • Blue light from screens tricks your body into thinking it’s not as late as it really is, and can disrupt your natural sleep-awake cycles. Which, recent studies in America have shown, can be harmful to our health and wellbeing.  healthly living chiropractor care Bridgend
  • Children using these devices before bedtime could struggle to settle and take longer to fall asleep.

 

As a Bridgend Chiropractor dedicated to helping my patients achieve wellness and optimal function, the solution is very simple – don’t expose yourself to blue lights before bed.

 

However, if you cannot do without a last minute bit of time on your mobile/tablet/PC before retiring for the evening, here is the solution: 

  • If using a PC or laptop get a program called “f.lux” which will convert your screen to an orange / reddish hue which will reduce the blue light greatly. Which is in turn good for Sleep hormones!
  • Most Apple devices are equipped with a night mode, or night shift mode, which will automatically change the hue of the screen after dark. Accessible via your settings menu.
  • Android devices can be helped by downloading a free app called “Bluelight Filter” from the play store, it is completely free. Some devices have a night mode built in, but if not, the app can do the same thing.

 

It will take a bit of getting use to, but if you do this, your nervous system and hormone system will be very grateful to you! And who doesn’t want to have better sleep and wake up feeling tip top in the morning? I know I do!

 

Posture Correction Advice from Sandford Chiropractic – Sitting at your Computer

A patient at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend recently reminded me that I have an outstanding post about posture correction and sitting at computers that needed to be done, so here I am making it happen. As we all know, many of us do jobs where we have to sit at a computer for hours on end, but a lot of us also sit at a computer for hours on end for fun too. Gamers, I’m looking at you! What’s more, the research is clear that few of us are prepared to give up our gadgets even in the face of pain.

So as your Bridgend Chiropractor, its my pleasure and duty, to advise you of the best way to sit at your computer both for fun, and for work. 

  • Much like a car, you want your knees level with, or slightly lower than your hips.
  • Your feet should be flat on the floor.
  • A little bit of recline to 100 to 110 degrees is advisable.  If the chair has lumbar support that should be utilised too.
  • Armrests should be positioned to support your shoulders if the chair has them.
  • Sit up straight and don’t slouch.

As for the computer: 

  • The keyboard should be close, and directly in front of you.
  • You want the keyboard in a neutral position to support your wrists by having them straight.
  • Remember to keep those shoulders relaxed when positioning the keyboard!
  • Keep the mouse as close as possible to the keyboard to avoid having to use the shoulders.
  • If it’s a desktop computer, place the screen as close to central with the monitor as possible.
  • The top of the screen should be 5cm or 2 inches above eye level. You shouldn’t have to stoop to see the screen properly. 
  • The screen, ideally, should be arms length away from you approximately.

Breaks are key and if possible take a 2 minute break every 20 minutes and move about. So many of us also seem to eat lunch at our computers now, this is a mistake! Eye fatigue, altered posture when using the computer and eating lunch, are two very good reasons to not eat at ones computer. But even under optimal conditions, static posture is bad for us!

If this advice has come a little late, and you are already suffering from the effects of bad posture with aching or pain in your back and/or neck, then Chiropractic can help. At Sandford Chiropractic we are trained in Posture Correction Techniques and so if you’re affected please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Einstein once famously said: “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.”

So lets remember that computers are our tools and not the other way around.

Are you suffering from ‘Tech Neck’? Bridgend Chiropractor gives advice.

One of the things that is becoming more apparent, both within Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend, and indeed in the world at large is the impact that technological devices are having on our bodies.

Postures seem to be deteriorating in young people at an astonishing speed. The most obvious trait of somebody with “tech neck” is the noticeable forward head carriage. According to the book Physiology of the Joints Volume 3. For every inch, or 2.54 cm your head moves forward. It gains the equivalent of 10lbs or 4.5kg of weight” as gravity is able to exert greater force on your head due to it being off your center of gravity.

To put that into perspective, that’s like having a rather heavy newborn baby strapped to your head… Permanently. I use a newborn baby as a description, because most of us have held a newborn baby whether it be our own or a close friend or family member, that baby soon gets pretty heavy, pretty quick. Then, we want to hand the baby back, or put it down. Sadly, our head is not so conveniently removable.

So what’s causing this? The answer is being stationary for long periods in poor posture caused by: 

  • Mobile phones.
  • Tablets
  • Laptops
  • Games consoles.
  • Lack of self awareness

As your head moves forward it applies leverage on the rest of your spine and muscles, the results of that leverage are typically in the order of: 

  • Pain
  • Headaches
  • Stiffness
  • Further postural deformity as your upper back begins to hump.
  • Deteriorating health
  • Some studies are even suggest early onset of arthritis in the neck 

 So what can be done to minimise the impact? 

  • Remain conscious of your posture when using these devices.
  • Sit at your Desktop or Laptop in good posture. (Check  Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend in a few days for that guide!)
  • Keep your head up, and directly over your body. Let the muscles and vertebrae have a break.
  • Reasonably regular chiropractic care.
  • Take breaks regularly.

Jeremy Clarkson once put it in his own brand of wit… “Speed never killed anyone, suddenly becoming stationary that’s what gets you.” 

He’s got a point, movement is life! And besides, the Earth already has four legged camels it doesn’t need a few billion two legged camels. So walk tall, and keep that neck and shoulders back and keep moving and stay healthy!

Are you sitting comfortably? Bridgend Chiropractor advises how to avoid neck & back pain after driving.

Tips on how to avoid neck and back pain after driving.

One of the questions my patients at Sandford Chiropractic Bridgend seem to be asking me, is about their posture while driving the car. This is a very interesting question, and as we all know driving can be quite stressful on our bodies, and on our minds as well. What I can suggest are some simple improvements that driver and front passengers can make to their seats in order to ensure their spine is as well supported as possible. 

  • Firstly your knees and your hips should be roughly level, if your knees are higher than your hips you should correct this. (Assuming of course doing so will not impede your ability to see the instruments or the road ahead) 
  • Try to recline the seat slightly, so that it will ease pressure on your low back. 100 to 110 degrees is the ideal position.

The reclining is also important in modern cars as many feature anti-whiplash headrests. These push your head slightly forward so in the event of a rear end collision, the risk of whiplash is reduced. If you sit completely straight with this type of headrest it will cause you to get a sore neck and shoulders!

  • Try to sit as close to the wheel (or bring the wheel as close to you as possible if the car has this feature) to minimise reaching. The less you have to reach, the less strain on the neck and shoulders. 
  • Keep your headrest at such a height so that the back of your head is central on the headrest. 
  • Ensure your mirrors are properly adjusted to your new seat positioning. 
  • Holding the steering wheel while cruising at 9 and 3 o’clock will further reduce shoulder effort and thus, less likely to get neck pain! 

One final piece to say, when you are sitting in the car, do not rotate your body or twist your hips, you should sit directly opposite the pedals and the steering wheel as much as is possible.

As far as driving goes, remember to take a 5 to 10 minute break every two hours so you can stretch and move around.

As BJ Palmer once said “Many of us take better care of our automobiles than we do our own bodies. Yet the auto has replaceable parts” Hopefully these very simple steps will now mean your car can take better care of you when you are in it!

SAFE TRAVELS!