Depending on the things you do after your visit to the chiropractor, the effects of your treatment can last days or just a few hours. Fortunately, you can extend the positive effects of your adjustments by following a few simple guidelines.
Pay Attention to Your Posture
Poor posture can contribute to spinal misalignments, tight muscles and other uncomfortable symptoms. Although you may feel better after the adjustment, your results won’t last very long if you slouch or spend hours hunched over your laptop or phone. When you use your phone or another digital device, hold it at eye level if possible. Constantly looking down at devices puts enormous strain on your neck and may even cause permanent damage to your spine if you don’t change your habits.
Use Ergonomic Furniture
Slouching may be unavoidable if your chair and desk force your body into an uncomfortable position. Ergonomic chairs keep your spine properly aligned, support your lower back, and distribute your weight evenly. When they’re combined with ergonomic desks and keyboards, you may be much less likely to experience aches and pains at the end of the day.
Standing desks offer another ergonomic option. Using a standing desk several times throughout the day can reduce pain in your upper back and neck and may improve your productivity. The desks are adjustable and move up and down to allow you to move easily from a seated to a standing position.
Take Regular Breaks
Improving your posture and using ergonomic furniture can help you keep your spine properly aligned, but pain may still be a problem if you spend long hours at your desk. Add frequent breaks to your daily schedule to prevent pain and discomfort. Take a short walk (even if it’s only to the end of the hall) and do a few stretches before you return to your desk.
Avoid Awkward Movements or Lifting
Activities that involve awkward movements or require you to contort your body can cause aches and pains. Painting the ceiling or digging new posts for your fence the day after your treatment can reverse the results of your adjustment.
Poor lifting techniques can also ruin the effects of chiropractic adjustments. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and use your knees and legs, rather than your back, when you lift.
Fill Your Water Bottle
Water helps your body get rid of toxins that are released after an adjustment. Increasing your water intake for a few days after your treatment can be very beneficial. Water improves joint lubrication, which may help keep your joints become more flexible. Upping your water intake can also help you avoid dehydration, a condition that can cause headaches, muscle weakness, dizziness, fatigue, and irritability.
Get a Little Exercise
Although you won’t want to participate in strenuous activities soon after an adjustment, low-impact exercise will help keep your muscles loose and improve your range of motion. Walking, swimming, biking, yoga, Pilates and other forms of exercise will enhance your adjustment results.
Your chiropractor may have taught you a few exercises you can do at home to improve the strength and flexibility of your muscles. These exercises are an important part of your treatment plan and should be performed as often as your chiropractor recommends.
Don’t Skimp on Sleep
Sleep plays a pivotal role in the healing process. While you’re sleeping, your body repairs muscles and tissues and produces hormones that reduce inflammation. If you don’t get seven to eight hours of sleep every night, you may be unwittingly sabotaging the effects of your chiropractic treatment.
Do you sleep on your back? This position may be a factor in your pain. The American Chiropractic Association notes that you put approximately 50 pounds of pressure on your back when you sleep on it.
Chiropractic adjustments offer a simple, natural way to control pain in your joints and muscles. Contact us if you’re ready to schedule an appointment.
Photo by Jesper Aggergaard
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- American Chiropractic Association: Tips for a Healthy Spine
- Spine-Health: Exercise and Chiropractic Therapy