Those new born days and weeks for most women can be described as a being a bubble of love and awe at what your body has produced. During the nine months prior to this we invest so much time making sure we eat healthy, exercise wisely and educate ourselves of what’s to come.
We may have attended ante natal classes that focus on breastfeeding and focus on how to get that perfect latch. Some mothers and babies take to it easily but many have obstacles to overcome, such as suboptimal latch, tongue tie and nipple pain.
Breastfeeding is supposed to be the most natural thing in the world but it isn’t in anyway easy.
Someone that is often neglected at this precious time is the mum. It can affect us in so many ways particularly emotionally, mentally and also physically.
How does breastfeeding physically affect the mum?
Many postpartum women who attend the clinic have issues with neck pain, mid back pain, headaches, low back pain and even referred pain into the arm/ hand. Basically their posture is inadvertently suffering from all that nursing, cuddling, holding and carrying of their little one.
Of course this doesn’t just apply to nursing mothers but also to those that bottle feed.
Tips on how you can help yourself:
It’s important to ‘check in’ every so often when you’re feeding to make sure you’re not hunching over your baby constantly. This will put strain on those postural muscles and local joints.
Bring the baby to you and use supports such as a nursing pillow to help.
Look at changing nursing position if possible. For example try laid back nursing where you can relax more during feeding.
Foam roll your mid back little and often to relieve tension.
Start doing some gentle stretches for your mid back, chest, neck and hips.
Chiropractic, soft tissue therapies and dry needling are excellent tools for relieving joint restrictions and muscle tension. As well as these, stability exercises are given to make sure these areas are better able to withstand the demands of everyday parenting.
If you are still in discomfort or experience an increase in symptoms consult your local health professional or contact us today for a consultation.
Check out Shane’s XIX Podcast Interview discussing all things Golf Injuries, Rehab & Performance
▫️How he got to work on the PGA & European Tour ▫️Whats it like working with tour pros? ▫️The changes he’s seen in the past 10 years ▫️What it takes to be a tour pro? ▫️What amateurs can do to improve their game?
In the sporting world concussions are one of the most commonly seen injuries, particularly in impact sports. Concussions can also happen in the general population. They are one of the most important injuries to recognise quickly. Appropriate treatment and rehabilitation are essential, because concussion really is a mild form of traumatic brain injury.
Just one concussion can increase the risk of long term damage to the brain and can increase the risk of getting another concussion. This is why it is so important to recognise them and get treatment. Not only can you injure the brain when you have a concussion, there can also be damage to the spine and the neck musculature and ligaments.
What is Post-Concussion Syndrome?
Post-Concussion syndrome is what can occur after the initial injury and can last in some cases up to six months. Symptoms include: headache, dizziness, fatigue, cognitive difficulties (difficulty remembering things or focusing), and irritability, with some of these symptoms being caused by spasms in the musculature of the head and neck.
One common muscle involved in head and neck injuries is the Rectus Capitis Posterior Minor. It attaches on the first vertebrae of the neck and occiput, and then has connections into the dura mater, one of the layers of covering over the brain. When these structures are injured or not functioning properly, it can cause pulling on the dura mater around the brain leading to increased headaches.
How Can ART ® help?
Active Release Techniques® are used to help diagnose and find the injured area and treat it, with the goals of restoring the normal movement of the muscle and/or joint, thereby speeding up the rate of healing! And in the case of this muscle, helping to decrease headaches.
Along with ART ® we have numerous other techniques we use in the clinic to help you get back quickly to enjoying your activities and your life! Contact us today to see if we can help with your recovery from a concussion!
Dizziness can be a little bit complicated. It can be caused by a number of different reasons, but you probably never thought that your neck could be one of them!? Well Cervicogenic vertigo is exactly that, dizziness that is theorised to be caused from dysfunctional or lack of movement in the neck.
20-58% of people who have had head/neck injuries or whiplash will also experience dizziness
How can my neck contribute to dizziness?
Typically this specific type of dizziness is seen in people after an injury to the head and neck such as concussion or whiplash. But that is not always the case, sometimes it is also seen in people with severe muscle spasm in the neck or loss of movement in the neck.
Proprioception is your body’s ability to perceive where it is in space. Tricky to understand, but basically think about it as your ability to stay on balance. Proprioceptive receptors in the neck can be disrupted through concussion or whiplash injury, thus relaying incorrect information back to the brain about where the body is, causing the sensation of dizziness or the sensation of being pulled to one side, or the room spinning. Along with the dizziness people with this type of vertigo typically have pain and limited range of motion in the head and neck.
What are the symptoms?
Neck pain and/or loss of motion in the neck
Dizziness, sense of the room moving or spinning, or feeling disconnected from your body
The difference between other types of vertigo and this one are that the dizziness type symptoms you experience are made worse by holding specific positions of the head and neck. Moving the head doesn’t usually cause the symptoms to flare up but keeping the head in a certain position for a longer time does.
This type of vertigo or dizziness that is caused from injury to or lack of movement in the neck typically responds well to chiropractic care and physiotherapy. Using manual therapy such as manipulation, mobilisation, and Active Release Techniques (ART®) to release the muscles and improve range of motion has been shown to help in these cases. Also specific exercises for the neck and exercises to improve proprioception can be beneficial as well.
As with any condition it is important to have a thorough examination to figure out the true cause of the problem. Give us a call today to see if we can help with your problem!
FRC® is a comprehensive joint training system backed by science and research.
Whether you are experiencing joint/ muscle tightness or not, the FRC® approach will help you achieve increased mobility while also aiding to reduce inflammation and pain.
It utilises various types of exercises for example Controlled Articulated Rotations (CARs) to promote joint health, mobility and control, and Pails and Rails which uses isometric holds to strengthen the target joints.
3 main goals of FRC®
What is FRC® used for?
Joint health and maintenance
The Functional Range Conditioning concepts can be used on clients of all ages and all abilities and has proved to be highly successively with patients of the Lawlor Clinic.
If you would like to book an appointment please contact us today for a quick chat to see how we can help!
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic, Portlaoise
Chiropractic & Sports Injuries | Active Release Techniques (ART®)
It’s safe to say that the majority of us have a scar of some sort,for example surgical related, c-section scars, appendectomy scars or scars from cuts or broken bones.
What is scar tissue?
Scar tissue forms after injury to the normal cells of the body and it is the body’s natural response to repair any tissue damage. Scars can however generate its own issues once it has laid down, the effects of which is something we come across daily in the clinic.
The effect of scars on the body?
Excessive scarring will create tissue tension throughout the fascial system and limit the mobility within the muscles, tendons, ligaments and ultimately the joints. This results in altered postures and movement patterns. When this happens a cascade of compensatory movement starts elsewhere, creating pain and stiffness, such as neck, shoulder and low back pain.
The assessment and treatment of scars is often a neglected area in the management of musculoskeletal pain and is of upmost importance, particularly in the case of an unproblematic longstanding scar which may be preventing the patient from returning to full non painful movement.
At the clinic we examine and address scars old and new to improve soft tissue function and movement. All with the intention of improving joint mobility and giving the best foundations for developing core stability in our patients. This is especially important for ladies who have had c-section procedures and want to get fit again after childbirth and reduce low back pain.
If you would like to book an appointment please contact us today for a quick chat to see how we can help!
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic: Portlaoise
Chiropractic | Active Release Techniques (ART®) | Functional Range Conditioning (FRC®)
Fibromyalgia is a chronic syndrome marked by widespread muscular tenderness and pain. Those with FM commonly experience disturbances in sleep, mood, and cognition, as well as having neural symptoms also.
Fibromyalgia is characterized by 18 tender points (9 pairs) throughout the body. These tender points are located in the hips, neck, chest, elbow and knee.Fibromyalgia sufferers will have at least 11 tender points and will have had symptoms for >3 months.
It is accepted that the treatment of Fibromyalgia is multimodal. Generally, this encompasses relaxation, meditation, exercise, physiotherapy, acupuncture, nutrition, medication and laser therapy.
Resistance training is a great way to build up muscle strength, power, and endurance. Studies have shown that after 16-21 weeks of beginning a resistance training programme, the tenderness and pain levels in female Fibromyalgia sufferers reduced. The training helped to improve overall well-being, physical function, and muscle strength.
After 12 weeks of beginning a flexibility programme, overall muscle and joint pliability and flexibility improved. And, doing 20-30min walks @ approx. 60-70% max heart rate has been shown to improve mood and sleep patterns.
Evidence suggests that acupuncture can provide short term benefits to Fibromyalgia patients, generally up to one month within treatment. The acupuncture needles are placed on the 9 pairs of Fibromyalgia tender points. Its effects have been further enhanced when combined with other modalities, like exercise or laser therapy.
Laser has many benefits for those with Fibromyalgia. It is a painless intervention for those with Fibromyalgia. Laser stimulates cell growth, increases cell metabolism, invokes an anti-inflammatory response, promotes oedema reduction, stimulates nerve function, reduces the production of substance P, and stimulates the production of endorphins. Laser is applied to the area of pain and/or the 9 pairs of tender points for 20-30seconds per point.
Laser helps to improve sleep, improve physical function, increase mobility, reduce pain, muscle spasm and fatigue.
Nutrition is vital in managing Fibromyalgia. Various studies have connected Fibromyalgia to bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine and a compromised gut function as a result. There are a variety of ways to help cleanse your gut and improve your digestive function. For example: ultrainflamx, omega 3 fish oils, probiotics, turmeric, and vitamin D3 are all very effective in creating a healthy gut. It is also beneficial to either cut out dairy or wheat, depending on which is more sensitive to your gut.
Meditation has been shown to improve mood and sleep patterns in individuals with altered sleep and mood swings. Try to find a quiet room, darkly lit, for 10-15mins twice daily to listen to some relaxing music. Focus on taking deep, slow breaths and try focussing on something that makes you happy. The HeadSpace App is very effective in instructing meditation too.
As you can see, Fibromyalgia must be approached using a variety of different interventions. In our clinic, we have expert medical professionals who have experience in dealing with Fibromyalgia. If you think you suffer with this condition, or know of anyone that does, book an appointment today and let us help you get on the road to managing this condition and getting back to your life!
Many of you who already attend the clinic may have had one of us use our LiteCure Laser on you. And as you sat there, feeling the warmth coming from that little machine, you were probably wondering, what’s this laser treatment all about?!
What is a Laser?
Firstly we have to start with the basics- what is a laser? According to google, a laser is “a device that generates an intense beam of coherent monochromatic light (or other electromagnetic radiation) by stimulated emission of photons from excited atoms or molecules.”
Lets try to simplify that. LASER is actually and acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. So in other words, through some amazing process of science and physics this light coming out of the machine is a very intense, amplified beam of light.
How can the laser help me feel better?
So we now know that the little machine is sending out a high powered very intense beam of light. That’s great and all, but how does this light actually help decrease pain and help to stimulate healing of the area?
To put it simply, the light from the laser gives energy to the underlying tissues, helping the tissues to increase blood flow to the area and accelerate healing process!
What’s the catch?
A treatment that is painless for the patient, easy for the practitioner, and gets good results; there must be a downside right? Well, no. It is FDA approved, and with thousands of studies performed, there have been no reported side effects of treatment with the laser! It is as good as it sounds!
From acute to chronic conditions, muscle, tendon, ligament, bone, or disc injuries, laser therapy is a quick and easy way to help reduce pain and speed the healing. Treatments with just the laser last from 15-30 minutes and results are typically seen in 4-6 treatments. Contact us today to see if laser treatment is right for you!
The most common type of headaches are tension headaches. Most of us have likely experienced one at some point in our lives. Headaches can usually be tolerated by most of us if they happen only on rare occasion, or at least infrequent enough to bother us. But what about when you start getting headaches more than once a month? What about every week? And at the extreme, multiple times a week? These symptoms are your body trying to tell you that something is not right! So what’s the cause of these headaches? And what can we do to help?
Causes of Tension Headaches:
Do you get headaches that start at the back of your neck or shoulders? Do you feel pressure around your head? These are some of the symptoms of tension headaches. Unlike some of the other types of headaches, tension headaches usually have a mechanical cause. Mechanical meaning a more physical cause. For example, dysfunction in the muscles of the neck, head, shoulders, and in the joints of the neck. Specifically the muscles at the base of the skull, the suboccipital muscles, are some of the most commonly implicated muscles with these headaches.
What Triggers these Muscles to Tense Up?
Forward head posture: working with head in a prolonged flexed position for too long
Stress: many people “hold” their stress at the top of the shoulders and with these muscles connecting up into the neck and head, too much tightness here can lead to headaches.
Grinding teeth/ Jaw problems
How we treat Tension Headache?
The good news for those who suffer from these type of headaches, is that they respond very well to conservative care, which is what the Lawlor Clinic specialises in! We use Active Release Techniques ®, to provide a targeted release to the problem muscles and tissues, and manipulation or mobilisation to the joints in the spine, and other therapies including Dry Needling and Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilisation (DNS) to help you get back to focusing on life instead of focusing on a headache.
If you are still unsure, contact us today for a quick chat to see how we can help!
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic: Portlaoise
Chiropractic | Physiotherapy | Active Release Techniques (ART®)
With the middle of July now here, summer is in full swing, (with or without the cooperation from the weather!). And with summer comes travel and holidays. We get many patients that end up injuring themselves on holidays, and what should have been a good time, ends up being a painful week or two. So what are some ways that you can keep yourself injury free while traveling??
Smart travel posture- Weather you are flying or driving or taking the train, one of the easiest ways that you can safeguard your back health is by remembering to maintain good seated posture. That can be difficult depending on the type of seat. Most general airline seats for example are not made with good spinal posture in mind. The easiest way to help combat this? Sit all the way back in the seat with bum and back hitting the back rest. Then get an extra pillow, towel, blanket, or sweatshirt, and roll it up and place it behind your lower back. This will help you maintain the normal lumbar lordosis. Sitting back in the seat also helps keep the upper back in a better posture. And don’t forget about the neck, make sure not to keep the head in a bent forward posture for extended periods, be that for reading or texting. Keeping the head back on the headrest will ensure a neutral posture for your neck as well.
Proper lifting of luggage- Utilize the rolling capabilities of your luggage if it has it. If you end up in a hotel with no elevator and are stuck carrying your bag up three flights of stairs, here are a few tips for you. Keep the abdominal muscles contracted. Keeping these muscles active helps them to act as a natural weight belt for the lower back and prevent injuries. Bend from the hips instead of from the back. Always try to aim for keeping the back flat when bending over to lift something up, this will also help to protect the lower back from injuries.
Hydration- Especially true if you are somewhere warm, but drinking plenty of water is not just for times when the sun is shining. Keep your water bottle close by at all times. Water help to hydrate the joints and the muscles and can ease tension and pain. Dehydration leads to headaches and more aches and pains.
Exercise- Most people don’t associate holidays with exercise! But being on holiday can be a great opportunity to do exercises that you may not be able to do while at home. Hiking, walking, swimming, are all great lower impact activities to do to help keep your body strong and healthy. Forget about that lounge chair at the beach, get yourself out and moving.
Smart shoes- Speaking of all that walking you will be doing. Now is not the time to wear a brand new pair of shoes. Make sure you wear in the shoes before you go to avoid pain. And if you know you will be doing a lot of walking, make sure to bring proper shoes with the support you need, even if they might not fit in with the local fashion trends. It’s better to be pain free, than to be stylish and in agony!
Keep our tips in mind as you enjoy your summer travel, to help keep back pain at bay!