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We presume there is no need to tell you how essential your spine is. After all, it holds up your upper body, gives you flexibility to stand & bend, and most importantly protects your spinal cord that connects your brain to the rest of your body. The spine is made up for 24 bones (vertebrae) connected by facet joints that aid movement, surrounded by muscles that provide support, and interspersed with jelly like disks that serve as shock absorbers.
The bone is resorbed by the osteoclast cells and formed by osteoblast cells. This condition is primarily due to loss in bone mass due to an imbalance in this process. Common causes include calcium deficiency, smoking, physical inactivity, & excessive alcohol intake. Symptoms include lower back pain, gradual loss of height & stooping posture
This is a serious condition caused by cancer cells in the spinal cord. Cancer cells usually arise from the spinal cord but can migrate from other parts of the body. Presence of cancel cells produces back pain, loss of bowel & bladder control, weakness of the lower extremities, sensory loss and paralysis due to compression of spinal nerves.
When the disc between the vertebrae gets thinner than necessary, it often leads to a herniated disk where the outer fiber tears letting the disk protrude. This protrusion can irritate the spinal nerves causing extreme pain. Common causes include improper stress on the spine, obesity or poor postures.
With age, the discs placed between the vertebrae lose their elasticity and become thinner. Over a period of time, this causes harm to the intervertebral joints in turn causing the nerve root canals to narrow down. There could also be a protrusion in the spinal canal. Most often, such conditions are triggered by bad posture, heavy weight-lifting or other strenuous activities.
Our homes and offices have great-looking furniture, but it’s not always ergonomic. If you need to sit for pro-longed periods of time, make sure you use a chair that keeps your knees level with your hips.
When sitting, ensure your feet are firmly placed on the floor and not left hanging. If the chair is too high, use a foot stool if needed. Probably the reason, most royalty always used one.
Its crucial to keep the curve of your lower spine as close to the way god meant it to be. For additional support when sitting, use a rolled-up towel or pillow placed behind your lower back.
If you find yourself standing, ensure you balance your weight equally on both legs. Just like you would on a moving bus or train, standing with your feet slightly apart helps your body balance.
Your neck allows you to hold your head up high as it attaches the skull to the trunk, letting information transfer between your brain and body take place. You must compliment your neck on how strong yet flexible it is, as it supports the weight of your head while at the same time allowing it to turn and flex in all directions. Made up of 7 bones, the cervical spine is gently curved in a convex manner.
The narrowing of the spinal canal that hosts the spinal cord causes pain as the nerves begin to get compressed. Causes could include osteoarthritis, accidents, fractures, osteoporosis or bone spurs. Usually leads to loss of motor control.
This is an inflammation of the joints in the spinal column. It usually happens where the spine meets the hips but often travels up to the neck. The cartilage in bones deteriorates and is replaced by hard tissue fusing the bones together causing loss of flexibility.
In this case, the inner portion of the intervertebral discs protrude, often pressing on the spinal nerves next to them. Pain in the neck muscle area can be quite tense and hard restricting or limiting head movement. The pain can at times radiate towards the arms and shoulder which may cause a creepy-crawly sensation or weakness in the hands.
Vertebral artery syndrome is when arteries that lead to the brain become narrow and the nerve roots are compressed. Osteoarthritis of the cervical joints and compressions of the intervertebral disks can also be quite problematic.
This is probably the best thing you can do for your neck. Maintain a normal curvature of the spine as often in the day as possible and your neck will surely thank you for it.
The pillow we sleep with rarely gets the attention it truly deserves. Make sure to pick out a good one that’s firm, not too low or too high. Give your neck the rest it deserves at night.
It’s hard to remember the golden rule when you’re hurting. But if hurt, do apply ice for the first 48 hours, followed by keeping the area warm with a muffler or heating pad.
The neck is most rested when in an upright or lying down position. The more we bend it forward, side-ways or backwards, the more we strain it. So flex if needed, but try and avoid over-bending.
Get up and stretchmove around and sit again.
Your wrist is a collection of many bones and joints that let you use your hands in many different ways. The wrist allows the full range of motion that you exercise on a daily basis, and at the same time, your wrist provides the strength you need for heavy gripping. There are 15 bones that form connections from the end of the forearm to the hand, of which 8 are carpal bones that form the wrist. These bones are grouped in two rows that serve different functions.
A blow or overuse can sometimes cause the tendon sheaths to swell up. Pain is felt on the hand most when the fingers are extended.
Pain or a tingling sensation in the hands can often be caused by the narrowing of the carpal tunnel, which sometimes is genetically-driven. Pregnancy could also be one of the causes of nerve damage. Feeling a creepy-crawly sensation at night is common. Flexing the wrist in a major movement could trigger the tingling sensation.
Strain and overuse can sometimes cause dislocation of the carpal bones and damage the articular cartilage. The wrist could be swollen.
A fall on the lower arm is what mostly leads to this type of fracture. People injured feel pain on the radial side of the wrist and could suffer from swelling as well. X-rays of the wrist in various different angles are recommended for this. In case this fracture gets overlooked, the bones will not fuse correctly requiring surgery which could have been avoided to start with.
This is usually caused by accidents where extreme force is placed all the way till the distal end of the radius. Victims of this injury feel extreme pain at the area where the radius joins the wrist. Displacing the fracture often displays an off-location wrist. Sometimes it might just be an injury to the carpal bones.
There are many exercises that we can do easily during the day to keep our wrists in good shape. Ask your physiotherapist for what might be good for you and take out the time to Stretch.
Most often than not, repetitive use in an in-correct posture is a primary cause of wrist pain. If you type a lot, make sure you design your workstation to fit you better.
Whenever we get stressed we often take a break. Similarly, be aware of when your wrists might be over-worked or stressed and give them the restful break they deserve.
When playing sports, its important that we stay as protected as possible. So whether badminton, tennis or any other wrist-heavy sport, make sure you’ve put on a wrist guard for the added support.
Your shoulder is one of the most complex joints in your body as it has the greatest range of motion amongst them. The shoulder is made up of bones and joints, wrapped up by ligaments and then surrounded by tendons and muscles. It is made up of primarily three bones: the upper arm bone, the shoulder blade and the collar bone. These are held together by 4 joints.
Bones are continuously broken down and restored where-in the newly formed bones are weak and porous. This affects the spine, shin and upper arm. Symptoms include bone pain in the neck and back, shooting pains in the legs, fractures, stiffness in the shoulder joints & tinnitus (ringing in the ears).
This is the inflammation of the small sac of synovial fluid in the body that is found between bones tendons and muscles in a joint. This is caused by excessive during repetitive movements and often also affects the elbows and knees. Symptoms include pain, stiffness and swelling.
If the pain is being felt along the nerves of the shoulder, it is usually a result of a linked-disease such as gallbladder, liver, cervical, heart disease or arthiritis. A heart attack too may cause shoulder pain, though cancer doesn’t.
Many shoulder problems are a result of over-using the shoulder which leads to breakage of soft tissue. Manual labour and sports are instances where this occurs often. The pain may be felt in one small location, a larger area of even spread down towards the hand. Injuries can also affect the ligaments, cartilage and bones of the joint. This may result in inflammation or a shoulder dislocation.
If you have hurt your shoulder, you can start by placing an ice pack on it for about 20 minutes. Try and do this at least 4 to 8 times per day. Don’t forget to rest your shoulder in the meantime.
The ideal thing to do post resting and the application of ice, is to provide some form of compression if possible. An even pressure on the painful area helps reduce the swelling.
Last but not least, ensure you keep your injured shoulder elevated and above the level of the heart. This will help with the blood circulation the affected area needs at the moment.
If you have injured your shoulder, please rest it completely, especially for the first 48 hours. It might sound like an obvious tip, but many often unintentionally ignore this valued advice.
The crux of understanding the elbow lies in understanding the interaction between the elbow, forearm and wrist. Effective use of our hands (a big part of what makes us human), requires stable, painless elbow joints. The elbow bones include the upper arm bone, the larger bone of the forearm, and the smaller bone of the forearm. The elbow is a hinge joint which means that it can bend and straighten out just like a hinge does.
This is the inflammation of the bone and bone marrow caused by a fracture/trauma allowing a certain bacteria to readily invade the bone. Symptoms include excruciating bone pain, high fever, fatigue and signs of infection (heat, redness, swelling, tenderness and restricted movement).
This is the inflammation of the small sac of synovial fluid in the body that is found between bones tendons and muscles in a joint. This is caused by excessive during repetitive movements and often also affects the shoulder and knees. Symptoms include pain, stiffness and swelling.
Much like tennis elbow, patients develop golfer’s elbow due to chronic overuse of the muscles that bend the hand joint and the fingers, causing pain at the inside of the elbow. Symptoms for Golfer’s elbow are the same as for tennis elbow.
While playing tennis we can very often overdo the strain we put on our joints. Many daily chores such as typing or using the screwdriver can also cause a tennis elbow as it includes an excessive strain on the forearm muscles and the points at which they are attached to the bone. In such conditions you might feel acute sudden pain, especially when shaking hands or trying to hold something.
If playing a sport that is often associated with elbow injuries, make sure you are using a proper sized grip on your equipment. This will help reduce the direct pressure felt by your elbow
Before any strenuous activity, make sure you have warmed up various parts of your body including the elbow which often gets neglected. Practice the relevant exercises before continuing.
Just like you would wear a helmet while riding, its important to wear the right padding on your elbow before playing a strenuous sport. Protect your joints. Prevention is always better than cure
Our bodies are the most amazing instrument we will ever hold. Use them freely and wisely, but ensure that if you are doing a task repetitively several times, you give your body a break in between.
Ribs are curved, compressed bars of bone and 24 of them put together form the rib cage which envelopes our heart & lungs, often being called the ‘wall of the chest’. Being semi-rigid is allows for the organs inside to expand and contract as necessary while still providing a protective covering. The diaphragm separates the muscles of the chest with those of the abdomen. The abdomen muscles are often called your ‘core’ as they help in movement of the trunk, and provide spine stability in various postures.
Another name for bone cancer, this is caused by the presence of malignant cells in the bone. It could arise as a result of another cancer condition in the body such as cancers of the prostate, breasts, lungs, thyroid and kidneys. Symptoms include bone pain, fever, fatigue, anemia, fractures & weight loss
The spine is curved from side to side with the shape of an S or C. The deformity of the this shape in the spine produces symptoms such as rib and shoulder blade prominence (hump on the upper back) and uneven length of the hips, arms and legs. It is usually caused by genes and neuromuscular diseases.
This could be a sharp or dull pain felt at or below the chest and above the navel on either side. It could happen post an injury or sometimes, without explanation. Some of the causes include Costochondritis (inflammation of cartilage), Pleurisy (infected chest tissues) or Osteoporosis (disruption in bone-building process).
Orthopaedic-linked reasons for a pain in the abdomen could often be caused by a hernia, a pelvic inflammatory disease or an organ rupture needing muscular support during rehabilitation.
Your knee is where your thigh-bone and shin-bone meet up. The patella (your knee cap) is made up of bone and sits in the front of the knee. The knee joint is supported by a ligament capsule and contains the synovial fluid that lubricates the joint. Two round knobs rest on a plateau like area between your thigh and shin bone holding it in place as well as enabling movement. The calf muscle is one placed at the back of the lower leg. When we walk, run or jump it helps pull the heel up to allow forward movement.
Accidents often involve structural damage to the knee joint. During an activity such as skiing, sometimes the lower leg twists while the upper leg stays static. This leads to swelling, extreme pain and instability as it is a complex ligament injury.
This is what is known as osteoarthritis can most often is a normal result of age-related degeneration. The cartilage becomes thinner, flatter and loses its elasticity. If a serious accident has taken place, an entire cartilage piece could also break off. Obesity is a common cause of premature wear and tear. People usually feel pain only when they exert the affected area.
These are usually the result of an accident where external forces placed more pressure on the knee than what the ligaments were prepared for. High intensity sports athletes (like soccer or skiing) often find themselves with such injuries. The knee swells up and poses extreme pain. Movement needless to say becomes next to non-existent.
This is primarily driven by wear & tear and accident injuries seldom have anything to do with is. This is mostly caused by incorrect strain to the joint on a daily basis. The tissue also loses elasticity and strength with time. Such injuries lead to a painful range of movement in the joint. Most patients feel pain in the inner or medial part of the knee. The pain becomes more chronic over a period of time.
We really can’t say this word enough. Before the start to the day or any strenuous activity, make sure you stretch your muscles and joints, especially your knee that keeps you moving.
If you have injured your knee then post rest & ice, remember to wrap your knee with something that provides compression. Then elevate your leg, ensuring fluids flow back to where they are needed most.
Our knees take the brunt of a lot during the day – whether its just walking, running, sitting, standing or playing a strenuous sport. Its always good to give it some extra support with a good brace.
Constant friction of the bones on the knee joint lead to trouble, so if possible, avoid repetitive tasks that overload the knee. If you must do them, ensure you take good breaks from time to time.
The ankle might look like a simple joint but acts like a hinge and is quite complex as it is made up of several important structures. The Creator designed the ankle to be a highly stable joint as after all, it had to withstand 1.5 times your body weight when you walk and up to 8 times your body weight when you run. The muscles, ligaments and tendons that support the ankle joint work in sync when you move your body or walk seemingly effortlessly.
The Hammer Toe refers to the bleeding of the middle joint of the 2nd, 3rd & 4th Toe. The foot appears clenched in a claw-like position. The Mallet toe, refers to the bending of the end joint of a toe. Both are caused by Ill fitting shoes and arthritic diseases. Symptoms include redness and thickening of skin on top of the bent joint.
Not an ankle injury directly, but is a result of a protrusion of the first joint in the big toe, often caused by pressure of an ill-fitting shoe. Symptoms include swelling, pain and redness. Can also be a result of genetic weakness in the joints.
This includes things like sprains and twists. Their names itself indicate the type of injury. The area around the outer ankle swells up, becomes red and is extremely painful. Trying to walk can be painful and difficult.
One of the most common ligament injures is the inward twisting of the foot. It might happen in everyday life or during sports, but it consists of extensive tearing of the outer ligaments. (fully or partially).
When we play strenuous sports, its always best to give our joints some extra support that might keep them better protected. So make sure you pick up the right ankle brace and keep your feet steady.
Your ankles carry the entire weight of your body, so its best to strain them as less as possible, and maintain an optimum body weight. In case you are obese, it might be a good reason to lose some pounds.
Every morning when you get out of bed, its good to just warm up your ankles and stretch them in all directions. Keeps the joint well oiled for the tasks of the day ahead.
Good shoes are always associated with good health. Get ones that support the curve of your foot as well as relieve pressure from the heel. For females this is a hard one, but try and avoid high-heels.