Whoa! Don't Fall!02/15/2011Back Pain and Neck Pain Influence Balance ControlCox Chiropractic Medicine Inc's Chiropractic Treatment Consultation May Indicate a Need to Improve Your Balance Control Do you notice that your balance and equilibrium are not as good as they used to be? If so, you are in good company with many others, especially if back pain disrupts your life. Back pain disturbs balance mechanisms and can be responsible for falls, falls that lead to injury like a back pain episode, a fracture, a broken bone. In treatment plan consultations, Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc often recommends exercise and chiropractic treatment for underlying causes of balance issues. Low Back Pain's Influence on Balance Use It Or Lose It: Don't Let Low Back Pain Stop You From Moving The quality of balance control is compromised in low back pain patients. Balance is associated with poor use of spinal motion as a component of good posture, and Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc can correlate imaging findings with clinical findings to discuss balance issues. Comparing people with and without low back pain shows that people with chronic low back pain tend to use lumbar spine motion less frequently for postural control than pain-free individuals. Further, after voluntary arm movement, low back pain sufferers need more time and a greater number of postural adjustments to regain postural equilibrium or balance. Have you seen others or even yourself who have to grab onto a railing or wall to catch themselves? Suppose they have back pain? It would make sense that they likely do. Do you have low back pain? Motion of the lumbar spine is likely altered in people with chronic low back pain. This altered motion would be associated with impaired control of postural stability and balance. People with low back pain have a delayed start of low back flexion, bending forward motion and take longer to regain postural stability after such bending. (1) The bottomline is that people with low back pain have compromised balance control that is associated with poor spinal mobility. Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc recognizes the importance of improving your spinal mobility and balance control. Blood Supply's Influence on BalanceDon't Let A Disc Herniation Stop Your Blood Flow Poor blood supply to spinal nerves when the spinal nerves are compressed by disc herniations is another explanation of such balance control and pain issues observed with chronic low back pain. This blood supply reportedly returns following the release of the nerve compression in surgery. Muscle weakness in the leg is also relieved as the nerve compression is released. This is an example of how releasing nerve compression can regain blood flow to nerves, improve muscle strength and ultimately aid in balance control and equilibrium. (2) Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc may recommend in a treatment plan consultation, not a strictly radiological consultation, the use of a specific treatment technique called Cox Technic flexion distraction and decompression to decompress spinal nerves non-surgically. Neck Pain's Influence on Balance, Especially Acute in AdolescentsDon't Let Age Fool You Adolescents who have neck pain are at risk for developing chronic neck pain. Balance is influenced by nociceptors in the ligaments in the cervical spine. When these nociceptors are injured, balance problems may result. Adolescents may have a lower tissue tolerance to induce pain and an associated nociceptive response than do adults, so neck pain in adolescents may well be accompanied by balance problems. (3) Chiropractic balance recommendations are conservative. Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc offers a thorough examination to young and older patients which will detect balance control issues, offer suggestions for improving your balance, and tracks any balance improvement as you heal. Contact Cox Chiropractic Medicine Inc for a thorough chiropractic consultation and treatment plan, if you choose, that may include chiropractic spinal manipulation as well as possibly some simple proprioceptive exercises to improve your balance and prevent injury as you go about your activities of daily living. References Mok N et al: Changes in Lumbar Movement in People With Low Back Pain Are Related to Compromised Balance. Spine 2011; 36(1):E45–E52Takamori Y et al: Combined Measurement of Nerve Root Blood Flow and Electrophysiological Values: Intraoperative Straight-Leg-Raising Test for Lumbar Disc Herniation. Spine 2011; 26(1): 57–62Weisshaar C et al: Metabotropic Glutamate Receptor-5 and Protein Kinase C-Epsilon Increase in Dorsal Root Ganglion Neurons and Spinal Glial Activation in an Adolescent Rat Model of Painful Neck Injury. J of Neurotrauma 2010;27 (12): 2261-2271 « View All Featured Articles"This information and website content is not intended to diagnose, guarantee results, or recommend specific treatment or activity. It is designed to educate and inform only. Please consult your physician for a thorough examination leading to a diagnosis and well-planned treatment strategy. See more details on the DISCLAIMER page. Content is reviewed by Dr. James M. Cox I."