DR. WAYNE M. FICHTER: What is the condition of your back?

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Are you are suffering from back pain that comes and goes? Have you been told that you have herniated discs or degenerative changes? Do you wonder how this happened and are confused on what to do?

Let me start by explaining why pain can come and go. Most of the time, the pain is a warning signal telling you to pay attention and to prevent you from doing certain movements. The involved area may become painful after a slip, fall, motor vehicle accident or an injury sustained over time from repetitive movements. Then, during the recovery process, the pain can disappear because the body is in the process of healing the area. Sometimes the involved area makes a full recovery, but sometimes it does not and there is an underlying weakness. You have seen this happen to someone after an ankle sprain or a shoulder injury. There is noticeable improvement, but it is not quite the same as it was prior to the injury.

When the injury is due to repetitive movements, the supporting muscles and ligaments become deconditioned over time leading to weakness of the spine. This is why people say, “I did the same movement I do every day but this time I could not stand up after bending over.” The reality is that the weakness was there all along but when the body was placed under the same force repetitively day after day, it was finally unable to recover leading to limited mobility and function.

With this in mind, you need a plan on how to improve the integrity and strength of the spine in order to prevent this potential weakness. Don’t wait until you have pain or you are prevented from doing things that you enjoy.

At Natural Spine Solutions, Dr. Fichter uses specific postural exercises designed to help strengthen the areas of weakness that are contributing to your specific spinal condition. These postural exercises require a small investment of time, but with consistency the health benefit is substantial.

Good posture is an important way to protect the condition of your back. It helps keep bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used properly. It also helps decrease the abnormal wearing of joint surfaces. One way to improve your posture is to focus on postural exercises that strengthen your core- the abdominal and low back muscles that connect to your spine and pelvis. Some of these muscles move your torso by flexing, extending or rotating your spine, which are common movements that lead to injury.

Being aware of good posture is the first step to breaking poor habits and reducing strain on your spine. When you sit or stand with proper posture, it will place less fatigue and strain on your body’s ligaments and muscles, which will help protect the spine from injury. Begin by looking at how you sleep, stand, sit and work. These small changes will make a difference, but it is equally important to make sure the spine is in healthy alignment and that you maintain a strong core for stability. Give our office a call today and see how we can assist you with improving the condition of your back.

• • •

Dr. Wayne M. Fichter Jr. is a chiropractor at Natural Spine Solutions. The business is located at 3913 Schreiber Way in Coeur d’Alene, 208-966-4425.

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