Franklin Chiropractor | TMD Disorder
TMD Disorder – List of Things you can do to help yourself Workstation Ergonomics -Ergonomics is the science of adjusting your workstation to minimize strain in the following ways: Maintain proper body position and alignment while sitting at your desk – Hips, knees and elbows at 90 degrees, shoulders relaxed, feet flat on floor or footrest. Wrists should not be bent while at the keyboard. Forearms and wrists should not be leaning on a hard edge. Use audio equipment that keeps you from bending your neck (i.e., Bluetooth, speakerphones, headsets). Monitors should be visible without leaning or straining and the top line of type should be 15 degrees below eye level. Use a lumber roll for lower back support. Avoid sitting on anything that would create an imbalance or uneven pressure (like your wallet). Take a 10-second break every 20 minutes: Micro activities include: standing, walking, or moving your head in a “plus sign” fashion. Periodically, perform the “Brugger relief position” -Position your body at the chair’s edge, feet pointed outward. Weight should be on your legs and your abdomen should be relaxed. Tilt your pelvis forward, lift your sternum, arch your back, drop your arms, and roll out your palms while squeezing your shoulders together. Take a few deep cleansing breaths. Pillow Selection -To avoid neck and upper back pain from improper neck support: Select a pillow that will hold your head in a neutral position while sleeping on your side or back. Avoid excessively thick or multiple pillows. Choose a fiberfill or feather/down pillow as these are usually better than foam. Consider a commercially available pillow that promotes good neck posture. Your Franklin Chiropractor can help you select the right pillow for you Nutrition-Brief – The foods we eat have a dramatic impact on how we feel and our bodies will perform best with quality foods. Here are a couple of nutrition tips for better health & healing: Decrease consumption of red meat & refined carbohydrates like sugar and white flour. Choose “healthy” oils like olive or canola. Increase consumption of vegetables and fruits. Choose water over carbonated, caffeinated or calorie-laden beverages. Consume six 8-oz glasses of water daily. Your Franklin Chiropractor does nutritional counseling if you have further questions Exercise- Resistance -Resistance exercise involves pushing and pulling against weights or resistance. Resistance exercise should be performed three to four times a week. Consider the following: Lifting lighter weights for higher repetitions (12-20) will build strength and endurance. Lifting heavier weights for fewer reps (6-10) builds strengths but increases risk of injury. Make sure that you alternate your routine between “pusher” and “puller,” muscles, ideally working them on different days. “Pushers” include: Shoulders, chest, triceps, abs, quadriceps, and calves. “Pullers”include: Biceps, back and posterior shoulder muscles and hamstrings. Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program. Check with your Franklin Chiropractor to make sure you are able to do these exercises Caffeine – Excessive amounts of caffeine have been shown to cause health problems. Your Franklin Chiropractor recommends that you read the labels on foods, as you may be getting more caffeine than you think. Keep track of the amount you consume and then cut back slowly (one cup at a time, for example) to avoid headaches and short-term symptoms that come from stopping caffeine abruptly. Other suggestions include: Go decaf. For tea drinkers, steep tea bag for a shorter period of time, or go herbal. Check the labels on pain relievers, as many contain caffeine. Select caffeine free alternatives instead.
Home Ice-Application of ice will help reduce inflammation by constricting swollen blood vessels. Ice may also help reduce muscle spasm and numb irritated nerves. Apply for 10-15 minutes. Break for 30 minutes. Reapply. (Alternatives to the ice pack include Ziploc bags filled with ice, or a bag of frozen vegetables.) Repeat several times a day as needed. Place a thin towel between your skin and the ice pack for comfort and safety. Use ice-massage for smaller areas. Begin by freezing a small paper cup of water. When frozen, tear off the bottom inch of the cup to expose the ice. Massage the indicated area for 5-10 minutes in a slow figure-eight pattern. Do not hold the ice in one position.Your Franklin Chiropractor can help you pick out the right ice pack for you Sleep Habits -Researchers recommend sleeping for 7-9 hours per night. Even small deficits can pose problems like decreased athleticism, diminished brain function, increased inflammation and a greater likelihood to get sick- sleeping only 6 hours per night makes you four times more likely to catch a cold when compared to sleeping 7 or more hours. Follow these additional tips for better sleep: Limit screen time before retiring- the blue light emitted from computer monitors, phones and TV’s can limit melatonin production and adversely affect sleep. Try reading from a book or magazine instead. Ideally, eat your last meal 3-4 hours before bedtime and especially limit heavy, spicy or high-fat foods. Ration how much you drink before bedtime to minimize bathroom breaks. Particularly limit caffeine in the afternoon and evening- caffeine has a half-life of 6-9 hours and can keep you awake long after the last sip. Stick to a sleep schedule, trying to retire and arise at the same time each day, including weekends. Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillow. Choose 100% cotton sleep clothes and sheets over synthetic materials (i.e. polyester). Some research has suggested that your “deep” REM sleep improves when your mattress is oriented so that your body is aligned North and South as opposed to East and West. Most people sleep best in a cool room; ideally between 60-67 degrees F. Yoga -Yoga is a popular method to stretch and strengthen the body. Your Franklin Chiropractor recommends, and many people enjoy yoga and it can be performed in groups or individually. Studies suggest that yoga may help reduce chronic pain and improve your ability to walk and move. Regular yoga exercises might have other health benefits such as reducing heart rate and blood pressure, and may even help relieve anxiety and depression. Follow these yoga tips to stay healthy: If you’re new to yoga, find a reputable, experienced instructor and start with a Level I or Beginners class. Start slowly and stay within your limits; don’t feel bad if you need to slow down or skip some poses. Listen to your body and avoid any position that causes pain. Remember this is all about relaxation, not competition. Don’t compare yourself to others. Everyone has varying levels of flexibility and experience. Be patient. Like any other athletic activity, practice makes perfect (or at least better).