Atlantic Coast Chiropractic

Low back pain, balance, and foot orthotics

Low back pain can result from many causes, and sometimes it just occurs forreasons that are not clear, such as the accumulation of stresses that occurover time. Many causes of low back pain have been described, such as bendingover wrong, combined bending and twisting, lifting, over reaching, climbing,sitting too long, repetitious activities at home or work, sports injuries,being out of shape, and so on. But what about balance? Anything that we can doto improve our balance should help prevent falls and imbalance in the body, hence improve low back injuries.Lets' look at strategies to improve our balance...

First, let's measure our ability to balance by using a simple test you cando yourself. Stand on one leg in the corner of a room or in a doorway where youcan easily grab onto something if you feel like you're going to fall. Try to dothis without holding on to anything, first with your eyes open and a secondtime with your eyes closed. If you have a stopwatch, click it when you startand stop (when you put your foot down). Otherwise, count, 1001, 1002,1003,etc. Studies have shown that for those under 60 years old should be able tobalance on one leg for 30 seconds with the eyes open and 25 seconds with theeyes closed. Between ages 60-69, normal is 23 seconds with the eyes open and 10seconds with the eyes closed. If your 70 and over, normal is 14 seconds with theeyes open and 4 seconds with the eyes closed.

So, now that youve tested yourself, Im guessing you arent too impressedwith your balance skills. The question now is, how can we improve ourbalance? Performing balance exerciseswith a rocker, wobble board, or cushion is very effective! Youll be surprisedthat if you use these tools for 10 minutes a day, the improvement in balance issignificant in just 2 weeks. Another method takes no effort at all on our part,and that is the use of custom made foot orthotics. Simply known as archinserts, foot orthotics (the prescription kind) correct the rolling in or outof the heel bone, referred to as pronation or supination, respectively, by wedgingthe heel of the orthotic. This stabilizes the ankle joint, reduces the inwardor outward shift at the knee and hip joints, and as a result, improves ourbalance.

Results of a recent study proved this to be the case. Researchers studied 13subjects over 65 years of age who reported at least 1 unexpected fall in thepast 12 months and measured their balance skills with the test described above,twice before and twice after starting the use of custom foot orthotics. 2 weeksafter the use of the orthotics, improvement was statistically significant,proving that balance is effectively improved when wearing custom orthotics. Irecommend doing both the exercises and the use of custom foot orthotics toobtain even better results. Since falling and imbalance is such a common occurrenceat any age, especially in those over 60, these simple strategies seem like a no-brainerto implement into a treatment program, especially for people with poor bonedensity at high risk for fractures.

We realize you have a choice in who you choose toprovide your healthcare services. If you, a friend, or family member requirescare for low back pain, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shownby choosing our services and look forward in serving you and your familypresently, and, in the future.

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8:00 am - 12:00 pm

2:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Tuesday

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

Wednesday

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Friday

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

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Monday
8:00 am - 12:00 pm 2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Tuesday
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday
8:00 am - 12:00 pm 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Thursday
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Friday
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday
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Sunday
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