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How to sleep: Avoid snoozing in this position if you suffer with back or neck pain

 

 

 

 

 

HOW TO sleep: The position you sleep in can have a big impact on your quality of slumber, as well as how you feel when you wake up. Particularly if you have back, shoulder or neck pain, certain ways of laying in bed are better than others.

Sleep is important when it comes to our physical health – not having enough can put you in a bad mood and result in lack of focus.

If poor sleep becomes a recurring thing, you can be at risk of serious medical conditions such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes, according to the NHS.

The hot weather can be one cause of a restless night’s sleep, but another is back pain.The three most popular sleep positions are on person’s back, their front, and their side – but which is best when you want to reduce painful symptoms?

Phenergran Night Time has revealed the pros and cons of these three sleep positions, and which one’s the worst for back pain.

The best sleep position for back pain is on your back.

But sleeping on your back may promote snoring and is not suitable if you suffer acid reflux or sleep apnea.

Sleeping on your side is most suitable for pregnancy. It relieves pressure on internal organs, but may put pressure on the lower back and shoulders.

If back pain isn’t your primary concern, the answer may lie in a simple 30 minute bedtime routine.

How to sleep: Avoid snoozing in this position if you suffer with back or neck painGETTY

How to sleep: Avoid snoozing in a particular position if you suffer with back or neck pain

How to sleep: Avoid snoozing in this position if you suffer with back or neck painGETTY

How to sleep: Sleeping on your front is not suitable for back pain

With almost one in five people admitting they feel tired everyday due to a lack of sleep, sleep expert Dr Neil Stanley shares the six things you should do in the 30 minutes before bed to help you re-establish a good sleep routine.

30 minutes
Use that last half hour to prepare for sleep and start by completing any final tasks for the day. Send that last email, pay that gas bill you’ve been meaning to pay all day and try and put aside any cares and concerns you have. Write down your worries and your to do list for tomorrow and then that’s it. Research conducted by Baylor University in Texas discovered that people who took 5 minutes to write down their to do lists before bed found it easier to drop off to sleep.

25 minutes
Reduce your exposure to blue light – blue light is known to suppress the release of melatonin, which is the body’s signal that it is time for sleep. Therefore, using screens before bed will disrupt sleep. Research shows that nearly 1 in 5 of us check social media before going to bed so try and put your phone, laptop or tablet down, and if you need to use your phone for your morning alarm then turn it over, or pop it in your bedside drawer to avoid being disturbed. However, it is not just blue light that can affect our sleep, it has been shown that even ‘paper white’ screens can also be disturbing, so avoid light levels above a normal lightbulb.

20 minutes
Do brush your teeth and remove your make-up well in advance of getting in to bed, so that you are not left feeling alert at the time you want to be relaxing into bed. This can also act as a cue that the body should be preparing itself for sleep.

How to sleep: Avoid snoozing in this position if you suffer with back or neck painGETTY

How to sleep: Sleeping on your back is best for back pain

15 minutes
Take a 5-minute hot shower. Not only is this relaxing, but by heating the periphery of our body it actually helps us cool down. This is important because in order to get good sleep we need to lose about 1oC of body temperature. Only 12 per cent of people have a bath or a shower before they go to sleep so give it a go and see if it makes a difference.

10 minutes
Conclude any activities you need to do before getting in to bed, such as visiting the bathroom so that you’re not having to get in and out of bed to run to the toilet. A staggering 42 per cent of people say they don’t get enough sleep because they need the toilet in the night so make this one of the last things you do before bed.

5 minutes
Bed means sleep and at the end of the 30 minutes it is time for bed – no more chatting to your partner or scrolling through Facebook! The bed should be for sleeping only and so when you get into it, it should be with the sole purpose of going to sleep and nothing else

Opioid Overdose Deaths Linked to Chronic Pain Diagnoses

More than 60% of Americans who died from an opioid overdose suffered from chronic non-cancer-related pain. Furthermore, it was found that they had also filled an opioid prescription (49%), and in some cases, seen a doctor, in the month before they died.

These findings were published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (Service Use Preceding Opioid-Related Fatality) in late November 2017. Researchers from Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) studied 13,089 adults under 65 years of age in the Medicaid program in 45 states, who died of an overdose between 2001 and 2007.

Many of those who overdosed also struggled with depression or anxiety. In the year before their death, more than half of individuals studied filled prescriptions for opioids and/or benzodiazepines (sedatives or depressants), and many had filled prescriptions for both. Researchers emphasize the fact that the frequent concurrence of chronic pain and mental health conditions can result in the danger of combining the 2 types of drugs, leading to issues like “respiratory depression,” or life-threatening shallow breathing.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the number of Americans who died from an opioid overdose has quadrupled from 1999 to 2015. In March 2016, the CDC released opioid prescribing guidelines, recommending that prescribers reduce the use of opioids in favor of safer alternatives, like physical therapy. Physical therapists treat pain through movement and exercise and partner with patients to improve or maintain their mobility and quality of life.

The American Physical Therapy Association has launched a national campaign to raise awareness about the risks of long-term use of prescription opioids for pain and physical therapy as a safe, nondrug alternative to manage pain.

Gratitude for those that have served our country

distressed flag with soldiers silhouettes veterans dayMemorial Day, originally known as Decoration Day, has been honoring the men & women who have died while serving in the U.S. military since May 1868 when it was established by General John A. Logan, commander-in-chief of the Union veterans’ group known as the Grand Army of the Republic wanted to recognize the more than 620,000 soldiers killed in the Civil War. In 1971 it became a federal holiday.

As our lives become busier and busier, we tend to forget why we have this special recognition and often fill the days off with BBQ’s and social gatherings but we should remember to take some time to realize the sacrifice that many men & women made so that we would be able to have these gatherings and for many a much deserved day off!

Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center would like to express our gratitude to all those who have served protecting our freedom this Memorial Day. As we all enjoy our family, friends & weekend plans, please know that your sacrifice does not go unnoticed and you will be remembered always.

Evaluation Procedures for Orthopedic Problems

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Picture: falmouthortho.com/

Adults – What are standard evaluation procedures?

Before a treatment or rehabilitation plan can be made, your orthopedist must first determine the reason for, and source of, your condition. This typically involves a complete physical exam and a review of your medical history profile, in addition to a description of your symptoms. Be sure to tell your healthcare providers of any other illnesses, injuries, or complaints that may be associated with the pain or condition. Also, tell him or her about any previous treatments or medicines prescribed. Initial tests may then follow.

Advanced evaluation procedures

If you need further evaluation you may have one of these tests:

  • X-ray. This test uses invisible electromagnetic energy beams to make images of tissues, bones, and organs onto film.
  • Arthrogram. This X-ray shows bone structures after an injection of a contrast fluid into a joint area. When the fluid leaks into an area that it does not belong, disease or injury may be considered, as a leak would provide evidence of a tear, opening, or blockage.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This test uses large magnets, radiofrequencies, and a computer to make detailed images of organs and structures within the body. It can often determine damage or disease in a surrounding ligament or muscle.
  • Computed tomography scan (also called a CT or CAT scan). This test uses X-rays and computer technology to make horizontal, or axial, images (often called slices) of the body. A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat, and organs. CT scans are more detailed than general X-rays.
  • Electromyogram (EMG). This test evaluates nerve and muscle function.
  • Ultrasound. This test uses high-frequency sound waves to create an image of the internal organs
  • Arthroscopy. This test is used to evaluate a joint. It uses a small, lighted, optic tube (arthroscope) that is inserted into the joint through a small incision in the joint. Images of the inside of the joint are projected onto a screen. It’s used to evaluate any degenerative or arthritic changes in the joint. It also detects bone diseases and tumors and may help determine the cause of bone pain and inflammation.
  • Myelogram. This test involves the injection of a dye or contrast material into the spinal canal. Next a specific X-ray study lets the healthcare provider evaluation of the spinal canal and nerve roots.
  • Radionuclide bone scan. This is a nuclear imaging technique. It uses a very small amount of radioactive material, which is injected into the patient’s bloodstream to be detected by a scanner. This test shows blood flow to the bone and cell activity within the bone.
  • Blood tests. Other blood tests may be used to check for certain types of arthritis.

After the evaluative information is collected and reviewed, the orthopedist will discuss the treatment options with you to help you select the best treatment plan that promotes an active and functional life.

Children – What are standard evaluation procedures?

Children will be treated much like the adults are with a full physical exam and a detailed medical history. At this time, be sure to tell your child’s doctor of any other illnesses, injuries, or complaints that have been associated with the pain or condition, as well as any previous treatments or medicines prescribed. Some early tests may then be done, including:

  • Blood tests
  • X-rays.A diagnostic test that uses invisible electromagnetic energy beams to produce images of internal tissues, bones, and organs onto film.

Advanced evaluation procedures

Children who need further evaluation may undergo 1 or more of the following:

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). A diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies, and a computer to produce detailed images of organs and structures within the body.
  • Computed tomography scan (also called a CT or CAT scan).A diagnostic imaging procedure that uses a combination of X-rays and computer technology to produce horizontal, or axial, images (often called slices) of the body. A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat, and organs. CT scans are more detailed than general X-rays.
  • EMG (electromyogram).A test used to evaluate nerve and muscle function.
  • Bone scan.A nuclear imaging method to evaluate any degenerative and/or arthritic changes in the joints; to detect bone diseases and tumors; to determine the cause of bone inflammation.
  • This is becoming a common test for evaluating musculoskeletal complaints.

After the evaluative information is collected and reviewed, your child’s orthopaedist will discuss with you all treatment options and help you select the best treatment plan to enable your child to live an active and functional life.

Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center has two convenient office locations in Warrenton (540) 347.9220 & Gainesville (703) 743.2814 to serve all of your Orthopaedic needs.  Call us today to schedule an appointment.  Same day/next day appointments available.  For more information on all comprehensive services we offer, visit www.broava.com.

Courtesy: Krames Staywell

Online Medical Reviewer: Ogiela, Dennis, MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Banerjee, Rahul, MD 

Neck Pain at Work?

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It’s  important to look at workplace ergonomics as part of treatment and prevention of neck pain.  Most often we forget.  This Spine Health article explains what you can do to reduce painful neck pain.

When sitting at a desk and looking straight ahead:

  • Eyes should point directly at the top third of your computer screen.
  • Forearms should be approximately parallel with the floor when typing.
  • Elbows should be at the side.
  • Feet should be flat on the floor with the thighs parallel with the floor.
  • If you stand or perform driving tasks, make sure that one side of the body is not constantly rotated more than the other side, and that there is as much symmetry in repetitive tasks as possible.

If you are experiencing neck pain, Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center can help.  Our team of board certified/ fellowship trained physicians, as well as our physical therapy and rehabilitation department (including massage therapy) will diagnose your neck pain and develop a treatment plan that is right for you.

Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center has two convenient office locations in Warrenton (540) 347.9220 & Gainesville (703) 743.2814 to serve all of your Orthopaedic needs.  Call us today to schedule an appointment.  Same day/next day appointments available.  For more information on all comprehensive services we offer visit www.broava.com.