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!

BCA Share Top Tips for Festival Season – Avoid Back Pain!

Bridgend Chiropractor shares BCA tips on how to take care of your back during festival season – avoid back pain!

The British Chiropractic Association recently put together a list of tips to help people avoid back pain during festival season. If you think about it – a festival involves A LOT of standing about, possibly sleeping on the floor, and carrying about your festival survival kit. So if you’re planning a festival trip – check out the BCA tips below and keep your back happy!

Getting Ready to Rock?

June sees the start of a summer of festivals across the UK and Europe.
Now appealing to young and old alike they focus on much more than music, offering quality food and other, eclectic, activities; something for everyone.

If a festival is on your agenda for this summer whether it’s bright sunshine or driving rain, it is important to take care of your back so you can maximise the fun.
Many festival-goers just go for the day and some will choose to camp overnight but all will be sitting or sleeping on hard surfaces, carrying bags/rucksacks and standing for hours on end.

Tim Hutchful, British Chiropractic Association (BCA) chiropractor, concludes that, although we all want to have fun, it is also important to remain level-headed and switched on to potential risks: “We all love the chance to let our hair down, but this shouldn’t be at the expense of our health. Simple things, such as remaining on the edge of a boisterous crowd or warming up slightly before dancing can help festival-goers to avoid injury and still have the time of their lives.”

See our top tips to help to have the best festival for your back.

Two bags are better than one – Whether packing for the weekend or just the day, if you have a lot to carry, it is much better to take two or more lighter bags rather than one so you can distribute the weight more evenly.
Rucksacks are best – Make sure you can pack your kit into something that is easy to carry. A rucksack with wide straps will distribute the load more evenly over your back and, if it has chest straps, this further helps to even out the load. Cross body bags are a good alternative or second bag option.
Protect your back – Ensure your back is protected against a hard and potentially damp surface by sleeping on a good quality camping mat. Use a sitting mat when you are resting during the day and, if uncomfortable, change position as soon as possible.
Pillow Talk – Having a pillow will help you get a good sleeping position and, if your pillow from home is comfortable and supportive, try to take it with you. If this is not practical, a blow-up pillow is the most portable. Have a ‘dry run’ on it before you leave home to make sure you can sleep comfortably.
Prepare your sleeping area – make sure to remove large stones or sticks that could dig into your spine.
Keep hydrated – If you are standing or queuing or long periods of time, drinking alcohol will cause dehydration which, in turn, can aggravate muscle pain. This is made worse if it is warm, sunny or windy. Make sure you keep topped up with plenty of water and juice.
Still Standing – If you know that you are going to be on your feet for a long time, make sure you wear comfortable shoes and loose clothing. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart to support your back and hips.

Article source: https://chiropractic-uk.co.uk/getting-ready-rock/

 

Bridgend Chiropractor Celebrates First Week of Opening

New Bridgend Chiropractor Now Open

Bridgend Chiropractor ‘Sandford Chiropractic’ opened its doors one week ago and it’s been a busy time for Chiropractor Dr Mike Belcher and his wife Katie.

The couple have worked hard to completely revitalise the premises in Castle View, Bridgend, and make it into not only a great Chiropractic facility, but also a warm and healing place to be.  It has ample free car parking right outside, and as you walk in you’re greeted with shades of lilac and mauve with natural wood. There are two beautiful Chiropractic tables imported from America set out in the screened-off but open-plan main room. Then there is a private room for New Patient Assessments, a small children’s play/waiting area, and a patient toilet.

Bridgend Chiropractor Mike Belcher at work

Patients at the clinic also take advantage of the latest Chiropractic technology in the form of a Spinal Thermal Scanner, a Variable Heart-Rate Monitor and an Electromyography Scanner.  The readings from these are combined to give a detailed further insight into what is going on with your spinal and neurological health, and it also shows how stress is impacting your overall health and well-being.

At the end of the week Mike said “It’s been a great week in every way – I’ve loved meeting new patients and really just getting on with the job of helping people through Chiropractic. Some people have come in with long-term complaints, and others with small niggles that I’m confident I can straighten out. Chiropractic for me isn’t just about getting people out of pain, it’s so much more than that and the potential for improved overall well-being is huge. I’m looking forward to our first year in Bridgend!”

Sandford Chiropractic is open Mon, Tues, Weds, Thurs, and Saturday. If you have a problem that you feel might be helped by Chiropractic, call us on Tel. 01656 503514 or get in touch via our Facebook page or our website www.sandfordchiropractic.co.uk.

Sandford Chiropractic opens new clinic in Bridgend

Chiropractor Bridgend South WalesSandford Chiropractic has opened a new clinic based in Bridgend.

The clinic operated by Mike Belcher with his wife Katie, provides treatments for a wide range of musculoskeletal problems such as lower back pain, neck pain, sciatica, headaches, migraines, shoulder pain and minor sports injuries.

The clinic specialises in diagnosing, treating and preventing problems with joints, muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons and nerves. Chiropractic treatment consists of a wide range of manual techniques tailor-made to your needs. These chiropractic treatments are designed to relieve pain, improve function and promote healing. Sandford Chiropractic also provides advice on posture, exercise, diet and lifestyle within consultations ensures that a prolonged benefit is experienced to the condition diagnosed.

Contact Sandford Chiropractic in Bridgend today for an initial consultation and take your first step to better health.