Facet Joints: Gliding Your Way to Better Health

Facet Joints Gliding Your Way to Better Health

If you’ve had neck or back pain that you could pinpoint with your finger, or experienced sharp pains when you move, it may be related to the facet joints of your spine. It’s easy to think of your facet joints like the “knuckles” of your spine. They are small joints and have a capsule and cartilage pad that glides and slides, allowing your spine to move.

Why it Matters:

As you go through life and your spinal discs go through the aging process, your facet joints end up taking on extra load. Unfortunately, this excess stress and pressure can wear down your facet joints. What results is the beginning of the degenerative process, which means you can end up with adhesions, restricted motion, bone spurs and, well…pain.

  • The facet joints of your spine slide and glide as you move.
  • Restrictions or adhesions in the facets can occur with age and injury.
  • Chiropractic adjustments help the facet joints move freely and decrease painful restrictions in motion.  

Next Steps:

The facet joints of your spine love to move, and, in fact, movement helps them stay healthy and may even slow down the degenerative process. Chiropractic adjustments may help reduce adhesions on these joints, allowing you to move more freely and with less pain. Here at Waverley Chiropractic Centre, we believe that when you’re moving better, you’re feeling better, and we’re proud to be a part of the healthcare team that helps you stay active!

Science Source:

Magnetic resonance imaging zygapophyseal joint space changes (gapping) in low back pain patients following spinal manipulation and side-posture positioning: a randomized controlled mechanisms trial with blinding. JMPT 2013

The Bowling Ball and the Pin: How Poor Posture Causes Neck Pain

The average human head weighs about 3.6kg. Each day we all walk around with a bowling ball (our head) balancing on a toothpick (our neck). We are designed this way to allow for the full range of motion we all know and love. Even under the best circumstances, this places a lot of stress on our spine. But leaning forward even just 15 degrees pushes that weight up to 13kg, and with a 30 degree tilt it’s closer to 18kg!  (That’s 5 bowling balls on top of neck!)

Why it Matters:

Driving a car, working on the computer, and using a tablet/phone all usually result in less than ideal posture. And when you start to lean forward, it places a tremendous amount of extra pressure on the discs in your neck and spine. This can cause increased compression and lead to pain. Even just a few centimetres of forward head posture can double or triple the amount of stress on the spinal joints in your neck.

  • The average human head weights approximately 3.6-4.5kg.
  • For every 2.5cm of forward head posture, an additional 4.5kg of weight is added to your spine.
  • Forward head posture may result in muscle imbalances, a high risk for spinal degeneration, reduced range of motion, and pain.

Next Steps:

Take a moment today at work and notice if your shoulders are rounding, the head has moved forward, and upper back is hunched over. If you see yourself slouching into this posture, let us know. We would love to provide you with some exercises you can do at work to help strengthen the muscles supporting your spine and combat these muscle imbalances. And remember, the more time you spend in this posture, the more likely you are to suffer head and neck pain.

Science Source(s):

The Physiology of the Joints, Volume III. 6th ed. London: Churchill Livingstone; 2007.

Myofascial trigger points, neck mobility and forward head posture in unilateral migraine. Cephalalgia 2006

boost your nervous sytem

Your life is experienced through your nervous system. Think about that. Every thought, breath, heartbeat, memory, and movement happens in coordination with your central nervous system.  Researchers have found that nerve signals can travel from your brain to your body at more than 250 miles per hour. Your brain is the master control system of your body with signals and messages starting in the brain and then heading out and down to your body. But can messages travel the other way? What if I told you there are ways you can impact your brain by moving your spine? It’s true…

Why it Matters:

Top researchers have found that specific movements of the spine, including the motion that happens during a chiropractic adjustment, can provide a multitude of benefits to your brain and nervous system. Adjustments activate the nerves that detect and sense motion. When those nerves are activated, it stops (or gates) the nerves that deliver pain signals. That is one of the reasons why adjustments provide pain relief. They literally “turn off” the pain sensors! Perhaps even more exciting is the emerging research that has shown adjustments can increase cortical drive. That’s a fancy way of saying researchers have found adjustments can make you stronger!  

– Your entire life is experienced through your central nervous system- every thought, memory, and action.  

– Movement of your spine can activate your central nervous system and brain

– Emerging research has shown chiropractic adjustments can help reduce pain, improve function, and even increase strength!

Next Steps:

Chiropractic care has been helping people live their best life for over 100 years. Having a higher quality of life and feeling better (with less pain) are two of the most popular reasons why people seek chiropractic care. But new research into sports performance, strength, and how the adjustment can improve brain function have a lot of people excited. We would love to hear how chiropractic care has changed your life. Stop by the front desk and tell us your story today!

Science Source: Mechanism of action of spinal manipulative therapy. Joint, Bone, Spine 2003. Neurophysiological effects of spinal manipulation. Spine Journal 2002.

top 5 benefits of chiropractic care



1 PAIN REDUCTION
The first benefit of chiropractic care may be the most impactful- reducing your pain. Before you are living your optimal life, you have to be free of pain.

Multiple research studies have shown that chiropractic is considered one of the most safe and effective treatments to reduce pain from your neck, low back, and more. Even if you are suffering from spinal stenosis, disc herniations, or foraminal encroachment-chiropractic may be able to help.


2 REDUCE HEADACHES
The second health benefit of chiropractic care, especially important if you have struggled with chronic headaches. Researchers have discovered that chiropractic care can reduce the frequency and intensity of headaches.

With over 20 million people suffering from headaches every day, this is a massive development in healthcare! The most common type of headaches includes; tension headaches and migraines. Tension headaches often include neck pain, muscle pain, and facial pain. Migraines are usually throbbing, can cause nausea and light sensitivity, and some even include an aura.


3 IMPROVED QUALITY OF LIFE
Many people don’t go to the doctor when they have pain. They go to the doctor when that pain interferes with their quality of life!

If you have a healthcare issue that is keeping you for enjoying your hobbies, hanging out with friends and family, and limit your ability to perform well at work- then you are likely going to start researching on Google and eventually call a doctor to get answers.

Fortunately, getting back to your active lifestyle, and improving your quality of life (or in science-speak, “functional ability”) is one proven benefits of chiropractic care.


4 REDUCED MEDICATION USE
Researchers have discovered that people who receive chiropractic care are 49% less likely to fill an opioid prescription. And, in my opinion, if we were able to reduce opioid use by nearly 50% just be helping people get well with chiropractic care- this world would be a different place!

Even what many people consider to be “safe” medications like NSAID’s contribute to over 100,000 hospitalizations, and over 3,000 deaths each year. Drugs should rarely be viewed as a first line treatment for spinal pain. Your body is designed to move and recover- so going to a doctor focused on movement and recovery seems like a good idea to not only reduce your medication use but to get the best results possible.


5 PERFORMANCE
Did you know that every major sports team in the USA has a chiropractor available to their athletes to help with injury prevention and sports performance?

That’s right, teams in the NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL all have chiropractors integrated into their healthcare team to keep their athletes performing at their top level all season long.

No one can perform their best when in pain, so chiropractors are used to keeping the athletes feeling good, but with a focus and eye towards sport-specific performance.



arm pain could be a neck problem

Pain in your hand, wrist, or arm can be frustrating. You don’t realize how much you use your arms and hands each second of the day until pain, numbness, or tingling gets in the way. But, getting rid of the pain may be easier than you think.

Hand, wrist, and arm pain often starts with a neck problem. When a spinal disc in your neck irritates or presses on a nerve, it can result in arm pain. Just like the power lines that bring electricity to your house, your brain and spinal cord split into individual nerve roots that deliver information to every part of your body. The nerves in your neck are specifically focused on providing strength and sensation to your head and arms.

  • A bulged or herniated disc in your neck can irritate or compress the nerves that travel to your hands, arms, and shoulders.
  • A recent study of people with cervical (neck) disc herniation showed improvement in over 86% of those who received chiropractic adjustments.
  • Improving spinal mobility, decreasing inflammation, and improving your posture may help prevent future episodes of neck and arm pain.

A painful arm as a result of a pinched nerve in your neck very rarely requires surgery. Getting rid of the inflammation, decompressing the nerve, and giving the disc time to heal are all part of a complete plan we use each day to help our patients reduce their symptoms and get their life back.

Science Source(s):

Symptomatic, Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Confirmed Cervical Disk Herniation Patients: A Comparative-Effectiveness Prospective Observational Study of 2 Age- and Sex-Matched Cohorts Treated With Either Imaging-Guided Indirect Cervical Nerve Root Injections or Spinal Manipulative Therapy. JMPT 2016

waverley chiro ready for life

At Waverley Chiropractic Centre we want to encourage people to take control of their health, regardless of age, by making chiropractic part of their spinal healthcare regime.

Australians aged 65 and over make up 15% of the population and the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare estimates that this will increase to 22% by 2065, putting additional strain on the government to provide care for older Australians.

3.7 million Australians reported back pain in 2015 alone. Back pain can have a damaging effect on a person’s quality of life by affecting their ability to participate at work, in social activities and sports.

So here at Waverley Chiropractic we are encouraging Australians to get Ready For Life by ensuring their posture is correct, they are living active lifestyles and seeking chiropractic care where necessary.

One way to help you be Ready for Life and improve your spinal health is to get a check-up from your local ACA chiropractor. Chiropractors can also be seen as a preventative healthcare option by offering advice and assistance in making appropriate lifestyle choices and therefore reducing the risk of spinal health issues arising in the first place.

Chiropractic care is not a one size fits all healthcare option. Chiropractors carefully assess each patient individually and tailor their care accordingly. By using a variety of non-surgical techniques, such as specific spinal adjustments, manual therapy and low-force intervention, chiropractors offer a drug-free, hands-on approach to spinal healthcare.

It is important to take preventative measures when it comes to spinal health and if you are experiencing pain, it is not advisable to ignore this. Get advice from your local ACA chiropractor as early as possible.

waverley chiropractic

At Waverley Chiropractic the health of your child’s spine is important. As children return to school, it is important that parents of school aged children look at the quality and fit of their child’s backpack, as heavy, incorrectly fitted and badly packed school backpacks can lead to spinal health problems as your child grows.

Spinal health is crucial at any age and items like heavy backpacks may cause strain and discomfort to the spine. I believe spinal pain can be attributed to a number of factors, and heavy and incorrectly worn bags may also lead to poor posture, slouching and uneven hips.

The relationship between spinal health and carrying a heavy backpack may also depend on additional aspects such as your child’s age and weight. 


If you’re worried about your child’s backpack weight, here are a few lifestyle and backpack modification tips:

What to look for in a backpack: 

  1. Make sure the backpack is the right size for your child, no wider than their chest and below the
    hollow of their back
  2. A moulded frame on the back, that when adjusted fits their spine.
  3. A bag made from a light weight material like canvas, with two padded straps
  4. Adjustable waist and sternum straps
  5. Separate compartments that allow for easy packing and weight distribution

How to carry the backpack in a spine safe way:

  1. Ensure that the weight of the backpack is no more than 10% of your child’s weight when packed.[1] Only pack essentials to lessen the load, perhaps use school lockers if available.
  2. Pack the heaviest items closest to the spine and make sure all zippers are done up all the way.
  3. Secure the sternum and waist straps (they’re there for a reason)
  4. Always wear both straps. Tell the kids it’s not cool to ‘one-strap it’ anymore.
  5. Reduce the time spent wearing the backpack to no more than 30 minutes at any one time.

Another tip is to ensure your child is undertaking 60 minutes of moderate physical activity every day, as a part of correct spinal care.


[1] Chen YL, Mu YC. Effects of backpack load and position on body strains in male schoolchildren while walking. PLoS One. 2018;13(3):e0193648. Published 2018 Mar 21. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0193648

Waverley chiropractor



Bottom Line:

Our bodies are designed to be healthy – to exist in a stable state of optimal function better known as homeostasis. During the holidays, heightened stress can wreak havoc on our nervous system, and therefore our optimal function, leaving us feeling tired and worn down. The good news is, you can stay happy and healthy and feeling great this holiday season by integrating a few simple holiday stress busters into your routine, and while you can’t eliminate every source of stress in your life, a few smart decisions can help keep that added stress at bay and reduce your chances of getting sick.

beat holidays stress with Mt Waverley chiropractor

Why it Matters:

Each year, millions of people get sick before, during, or after the holidays, and the most common culprit for all this illness is STRESS. When your body is stressed, it doesn’t recover very well, and you are more likely to become sick. Not only could you experience more aches and pains, but you may also experience mental fatigue. Luckily, you’re in the right place. New research tells us that just like eating well and getting enough sleep, Chiropractic adjustments can go a long way towards positively influencing your stress levels by reducing your muscle tension so that you can feel better both during the holiday season and into the new year.

  • Many people carry their stress in their neck and shoulders.
  • Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to decrease muscle tension in the neck and shoulders.
  • Research has shown people experience less stress after receiving Chiropractic care.

Next Steps:

By getting enough rest, exercise, and Chiropractic care, you can bust your stress levels and reduce your chance of getting sick this holiday season. You’ll feel better, more energized and experience a happier and healthier holiday, helping you do more of what you love with the people you love. That’s what it’s all about, and we’re here to help! Give us a call to schedule your next adjustment – you’ll be glad you did! Happy holidays from our family to yours! Book online at www.waverleychiro.com.au or phone 9581 2624

Science Source:

Cerebral metabolic changes in men after chiropractic spinal manipulation for neck pain. Alternative therapies in health and medicine. November 2011

Glucose Metabolic Changes in the Brain and Muscles of Patients with Nonspecific Neck Pain Treated by Spinal Manipulation Therapy. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Volume 2017



mt waverley chiropractor



neck pain

Bottom Line:

Traveling long distances on planes, trains, and automobiles is a common side-effect of the holidays, and the stress of all this holiday travel can be overwhelming. Lifting heavy suitcases, hopping in the car for a 13+ hour drive, or even getting the middle seat on an overbooked flight can lead to awkward neck positions and that all too familiar worn down feeling. It’s no surprise that many people experience increased neck pain and shoulder tension during the holidays, so what can you do about it besides turning into the Grinch and staying home? Well, new research tells us that you’ve made a smart decision in visiting our office for help.

Why it Matters:

No one should have to rely on dangerous medications to get through the holiday season. Even some of the most common over the counter medications have a laundry list of potentially harmful side effects. If you are experiencing neck pain and shoulder tension, Chiropractic care is a top alternative. Researchers have found that adjustments can drastically reduce neck pain, improve mobility,and reduce the overall levels of stress on our musculoskeletal system, which means you can feel better without having to reach for a bottle of pills.

  • Chiropractic adjustments can reduce the stress response triggered by our nervous system.
  • Reduced pain, improved rang eof motion, and fewer muscle spasms are often reported following Chiropractic care.

Next Steps:

For many of us, travel is a part of our yearly holiday tradition. As much as the trip can be hard on our bodies, it’s important to visit with friends and family. We want you to have the best holiday season possible, and if you plan on traveling this holiday season, let us know! We would love to show you a few simple stretches and exercises you can do to help you stay well between your adjustments. Give us a call or stop in today. Happy holidays!

Science Source:

Cerebral metabolic changes in men after chiropractic spinal manipulation for neck pain.Alternative therapies in health and medicine. November 2011

Glucose Metabolic Changes in the Brain and Muscles of Patients with Nonspecific Neck Pain Treated by Spinal Manipulation Therapy. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Volume 2017



Mt Waverley Chiropractor

Waverley Chiropractic Centre participated in ‘Giving Back’ Week from 10 – 16 December, collecting a large number of toys and food items, valued at over $1000, benefiting families doing it tough this Christmas.

Mt Waverley chiropractor

 

Joining chiropractors from the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA) in hosting ‘Giving Back’ Week, local chiropractor Dr Shaun Beovich asked patients to donate new, unwrapped toys, non-perishable food items or cash donations to the less fortunate in the community, in lieu of payment on Friday 14th December.

The gifts collected were donated to the Waverley Salvation Army in time for Christmas to children and families in the local area, going through difficult times this festive season.

Dr Beovich would like to thank all those who donated in any manner, whether big or small. Your generosity has been felt by the community and has gone a long way in helping families this Christmas.

A community service from Waverley Chiropractic Centre.


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