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TIPS FOR PREVENTING BACK PAIN

TIPS FOR PREVENTING BACK PAIN

Back pain can cause interruptions in your daily life. It can be excruciating for some and it's actually a very common problem people face today. According to (WebMD), it is the second most common reason why people visit the doctor. It can appear as a sharp burning pain or can manifest as a dull ache. There are many causes including the spine being out of alignment, injuries, chronic conditions, and others. The good news is that most cases are preventable. Let's explore the following tips for preventing back pain:

1) Exercise Often
If you're out of shape, chances are that your spine is out of alignment, which can cause back pain. You may think that resting is best when you have an intense painful episode, but it is actually better to get your back moving and release tension from your vertebra.
2) Improve Your Sleep Position

Use pillows to create an ergonomic position while you sleep. If you sleep on your back, place a pillow under your knees and another under your lower back to support your spine.

3) Stop Smoking

The (National Institute of Health) reported a correlation between smoking and the occurrence of back pain. That's due to the restriction of blood vessels that block the flow of nutrients. It affects spinal discs making smokers a population at risk for back pain.

4) Practice Proper Nutrition

Osteoporosis makes your bones weak. The (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) reports that the leading cause of back pain is from spine fractures from osteoporosis. This can be prevented by ensuring you consume proper amounts of calcium and vitamin D as well as having an overall nutritious diet.

5) Use Foot Support

Your feet play an important role in the alignment of your spine. (Harvard University)  reports that dynamic arch support alleviates back pain. Orthotic Insoles such as SelectFlex Arch Control Insoles allow you to immediately feel support and allow your whole body to align as a healthy spine should. The shoe inserts provide the benefits of orthotics by giving you arch support.

6) Be Aware of Your Posture

Nowadays we're bombarded with technology and unfortunately, it doesn't benefit our spine. A key factor for preventing back pain is maintaining good posture throughout the day and, as mentioned earlier, even at night while you sleep. Your ears, shoulders, hips, and ankles should make a straight line. Observing your profile picture will tell you if you are letting your head, shoulders, and hips lean forward. This misalignment in the rest of your body causes your feet to exteriorly rotate and is the foundation of many health problems. It also works inversely, if your feet are not properly positioned it affects the rest of your body's alignment.

7) Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of water has many benefits we all know about, however, joint health is another surprising advantage to staying hydrated. An article by the  (Spine Institute of North America)  notes that spinal discs rehydrate during the night with the water consumed that day.

This means that if you don't drink enough water, your vertebrates won't have the cushioning effect your spinal discs provide. Older adults have a diminished thirst reflex, making it more common for them to be dehydrated. This adds to the back issues that come with age.

8) Pay Attention To Pain
Pain is a signal that indicates to you the need for correcting a problem. It is easy to take medication and erase the pain, but that is not advisable. Instead, search for the root reason of what is causing the pain and correct it. By ignoring the pain, you put yourself at risk for an even bigger problem. Catch the pain early to avoid major back pain.

PaStart With Your Feet
Healthy spinal alignment is reflected in the condition of your feet. SelectFlex Arch Control Insoles provide the customizeable arch support that you can only get from orthotics. Step into the prevention of back pain and other ailments by giving your feet the support they need. Visit our website (www.SelecFlex.com) or call (844) 570-1862 to learn more about how you can give your body support, stability, alignment, cushioning, and mobility with orthotic insoles.

 

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GUIDE TO NEUROPATHY

Guide to Neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy is a nerve dysfunction disorder commonly affecting the feet. Symptoms include tingling, numbness and sharp, burning pain.

In this article, I will be discussing what this condition is, what causes it and how it can be treated. It's more common in older people, especially those past the age of 60, so I will be placing special emphasis on that. This disorder involves nerve problems outside of the brain and spinal cord. This would typically mean your hands, arms, legs and feet. Specific symptoms are related to the kind of nerves affected. There are three major types of peripheral nerves:

  • Sensory
  • Autonomic
  • Motor

Sensory nerves receive and transmit feelings of pain, temperature, touch and pressure. Autonomic ones are involved in basic functions like heart rate, bowel and bladder function and blood pressure. Motor nerves control the muscles. Feelings of numbness or prickling pain in the feet may extend upwards into the legs. You may feel a very sensitive level of touch. For example, just the pressure of your clothing against your skin may cause pain. If your motor nerves are affected, you may experience muscle weakness, falling and paralysis. Numbness from the sensory form can also result in falling. It's difficult to walk properly when you can't feel the surface you are walking on. Autonomic nerve damage can result in excessive sweating, lack of tolerance to heat, dizziness from changes in blood pressure and bladder and bowel control problems. (Healthline)

Causes
Although this condition can affect only one nerve, it most commonly affects several. This is called polyneuropathy. About three to four percent of individuals over the age of 55 have some form of polyneuropathy
(WebMD).

Causes include:

  • Diabetes
  • History of alcohol abuse
  • B vitamin deficiency
  • Kidney disease
  • Thyroid disease
  • Chemotherapy

Treatment
Treatment may consist of drugs like pregabalin, gabapentin, certain anti-seizure medications, antidepressants, lidocaine patches and pain relievers like ibuprofen and acetaminophen. For severe pain, opioids may also be prescribed, but these have limited value for pain relief from this condition. Foot pain can be severe, causing insomnia and limited mobility. Sometimes, non-drug therapy can help, too. Foot support products like Select-Flex can help alleviate pain in the feet by adjusting, supporting and improving the arch of the foot. There will be more information about that a bit later in the article.

Problems With The Foot Arch

Flat feet, meaning a poor foot arch, can place extra pressure on foot nerves, causing more irritation and pain. In some people, this is a natural part of the aging process. Tendons, which are tough bands of tissue, connect muscle to bone. It's these tendons, located in the heel, foot and upper leg, that work together to form a correct foot arch (WebMD). When nerves are damaged, they can affect the function of nearby muscles. If you have flat feet, you may notice that your feet tire easily, may feel achy and may be swollen near the inside bottoms. You could have back and leg pain, and it might be difficult to stand on your toes.

A common cause of this condition is Type 2 diabetes, which is more common in older adults past the age of 60 or so. High levels of blood glucose, the result of poorly controlled diabetes, can damage nerves throughout the body, but symptoms are especially common in the nerves of the feet. Additional damage to the feet may occur when you get a cut or a burn you can't feel. Your normal reflex to pull away from the pain of an injury isn't working correctly because you can't feel the initial injury pain. At least 50 percent of people with Type 2 diabetes have some form of foot pain. (Today's Geriatric Medicine) 

When medications fail, don't do enough or cannot be tolerated, non-drug therapy may be very helpful, especially as part of elder care. An elderly person with pain in the feet may need additional help to make them more comfortable. This may include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Physical therapy
  • Supportive devices
  • Orthotic devices
  • TENS
  • Massage

TENS, or transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, uses electrodes placed on the skin to send a light electrical current to the involved nerves. It's designed to disrupt painful nerve signals before they can reach the brain. Acupuncture uses thin needles that are inserted at certain points on the body. The needles are not painful in themselves. Acupuncture, although not well understood by Western medicine, is thought to relieve pain by inducing the body to release natural substances called endorphins. Endorphins are opiate-like chemicals produced by the brain to elevate mood and relieve pain. They work on the same receptors in the brain that morphine does. Supportive devices like walkers and canes increase security for elder care and may help to alleviate some pain. Proper nutrition and adequate, appropriate exercise is also important.

Intoducing SelectFlex
SelectFlex can increase comfort and reduce pain in the feet by correcting alignment, supporting the arch, providing more ankle support and cushioning the feet. In other words, it can help promote more normal gait and mobility. I invite you to learn more about SelectFlex Arch Control Insoles. We have worked with an orthotics company and our own engineers and product designers to develop a shoe insert that closely imitates the function of certain ligaments in the foot. Our adjustable PowerLift Arch can provide as much as 52 percent more arch support than other inserts at about one-quarter the cost of custom prescription orthotics. You can find out more about us here: (Welcome To SelectFlex) You can also text us at (844) 600-0082. I hope you will want to find out more about how our product can help you with your peripheral neuropathy. On behalf of SelectFlex, we look forward to serving you.

 

 

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GUIDE TO VALGUS KNEE PREVENTION

Knee deformities can cause pain, discomfort and make it difficult to walk. In addition it can make some people self-conscious about appearance. With multiple causes for knee deformities that cause malalignment, there are several treatment options that address condition improvement and the resulting pain. There are different types of knee deformities; one common knee deformity is genu valgum, or Valgus knee, also known as knock-knee.

What is Valgus Deformity?

Valgus knee is a lower leg deformity that exists when the bone at the knee joint is angled out and away from the body's midline. This causes the inability for a person to touch his or her ankles while the knees touch together. When the legs are not aligned properly, there is additional stress and pressure placed on the knee joint that can result in pain and discomfort as well as secondary issues as the person ages.

Causes of Valgus Deformity

While there are multiple reasons for Valgus deformity, the primary cause is genetics. When genetics are the reason for the deformity, both legs are affected with an angle. If you have Valgus deformity, chances are that someone in your family has the same condition. Valgus deformity is common in young children, and while about 75 percent of children ages three to five have knock knees, Boston Children's Hospital reports that about 99% of these conditions self-correct by age seven to eight.

  • Outside of genetics, there are other causes of Valgus deformity, including the following:
  • Tibial plateau fracture or an injury to the growth plate in childhood
  • Vitamin D deficiency, also known as rickets when the deficiency is extreme
  • Obesity, which can also make the condition more severe according to the Journal of Pediatric Orthopedics
  • Arthritis in the knee

Effects of Valgus Deformity

Those with Valgus deformity may experience joint stiffness, knee pain, a limp or unsteadiness in their gait. Over time, the additional pressure on ligaments and muscles can cause pain to develop in the ankles, feet, or hips, and you may be unsteady on your feet and at risk of falling. A discrepancy in leg length may also be present in those with Valgus deformity, further emphasizing a limp or unsteadiness when walking. If you have a malalignment of the knee and are experiencing pain, it is wise to consult with a physician to discuss treatment options. The earlier you seek treatment, the better chance for improvement and decrease in pain. Furthermore, additional pressure on the knee puts you at risk of developing osteoarthritis later in life so it is advisable to discuss options with your physician as early as possible.

Treatment for Valgus Deformity

Initial treatment for Valgus deformity may include anti-inflammatories for pain management. If the condition is due to a cause not associated with genetics that have made you born with a bow to the bone, physical therapy may be an option for improvement. With physical therapy, you may learn to achieve proper alignment of the leg, and it is possible to improve gait, stabilize the knees, and strengthen the muscles in the legs, hips, and thighs. If the condition is due to a Vitamin D deficiency or obesity, a physician may prescribe a Vitamin D supplement or a weight loss plan to correct the primary condition causing the secondary condition of Valgus deformity.

A more drastic treatment option may involve knee replacement surgery, which is more common in adult patients over age 50. Surgery can correct the Valgus deformity as well as the osteoarthritis that has accumulated in the knee joint over time. In younger patients, an osteotomy surgical procedure may be an option. This involves cutting the femur, or thigh bone, to realign the knee and correct the positioning. Recovery from surgery can be lengthy, ranging from six to 12 months. Because of the invasiveness of surgery, as well as pain and recovery time, physicians will often seek other treatment options first when possible.

Another treatment option is SelectFlex Adjustable Orthotic Insoles, an adjustable arch insole support that lifts the arch of the foot as you step. Extensive research has been conducted by Quinnipiac University, and was completed in January 2020, showing the patented technology provides up to 89 percent more arch support. This is a particularly good option to allow for constant correction of malalignments that can cause pain in not only the legs, feet, ankles, and hips, but also the lower back. The design is like a spring, similar to the ligaments naturally existent in your foot. There are three adjustable levels as improvement occurs over time, and the cost is about one-quarter of custom orthotics. Furthermore, compared to gel and foam insoles that last only about two weeks, this solution lasts for months and comes with a 60-day satisfaction guarantee or your money is fully refunded.

Depending on the cause of your Valgus deformity and the severity, your physician can be your partner is choosing the best treatment option for you. Before venturing into surgical options, it may be wise to discuss orthotic options. Take control of your malalignment condition today! Find out more about this special arch support.

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