March, 2021

Below are links to articles posted in March, 2021


Can You Relieve Pain from a Pinched Nerve at Home?

A pinched nerve occurs when there’s too much pressure on a nerve from the surrounding tissue, bones, cartilage, muscles, or tendons. The pressure can cause pain, tingling, numbness, or weakness in the affected area. You can feel a pinched nerve in your neck, shoulder, back, upper chest, or arm.

For the most part, it will go away on its own within four to six weeks, and there are many ways you can relieve pain at home. If your pain persists or increases after a few weeks, you should contact a doctor at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery.

Get Plenty of Rest and Sleep

Rest is an effective way to combat a pinched nerve. Sleeping will also heal the nerve as the body recovers from the day. Make sure to go to bed at a reasonable hour to get between seven to eight hours every night. Just remember not to rest too much, as it can increase your pain.

Do Light Exercises and Stretches

The right exercises will strengthen and stretch your muscles, which not only alleviates pain but reduces the chance of a pinched nerve forming. Trap stretches, chin tucks, head turns, neck bends, and shoulder rolls may help reduce your discomfort. Not all exercises work for everyone, so discuss options with a specialist.

Adjust Your Posture

Poor posture can cause unnecessary stress on your body and lead to damage in the spinal cord or muscles, leading to a pinched nerve. Make sure you sit and stand up straight with your head sitting evenly between your shoulders. Adjusting your posture to a correct position will ease the pain.

Use Heat and Ice Packs

Switching between heating pads and ice packs can help relieve discomfort from a pinched nerve. Apply a heating pad directly over the affected area for 10–15 minutes at a time. This will relax tight muscles and increase blood flow. Ice packs can reduce swelling and inflammation.

Wear a Splint to Help with a Pinched Nerve

Wearing a splint on the affected area, especially when you sleep, may help relax your muscles and alleviate pain. It can also help prevent further damage to your nerves.

Try Over-the-Counter Medication to Relieve Pain

Ibuprofen and aspirin can decrease swelling and relieve some pain from a pinched nerve. Make sure to carefully read the label and instructions before using. You should consult your doctor before using any medication. If your pain persists, a specialist might prescribe medication.

Book a Massage to Alleviate Discomfort

A massage can reduce pain, numbness, and stress. To do this yourself, apply light pressure around the nerve to relieve tension and relax the muscles. If you go to a professional, remember not to have a deep tissue massage. Any excess pressure can worsen your pain.

How Can I Prevent a Pinched Nerve?

It’s hard to prevent a pinched nerve, but there are ways you can lower risk. Maintaining a healthy weight and good posture are the two most straightforward methods. Daily exercise and stretching can help as well. You should also try to take breaks from repetitive activities, such as typing, at least once an hour.

Relieve Pinched Nerve Pain at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery

When you need to relieve pain from a pinched nerve, turn to the board-certified doctors at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery. Our doctors use the latest technology to diagnose and treat several back, neck, and spine conditions. When you first partner with us, one of our team members will work with you one-on-one to determine why you’re in pain. We will then develop a treatment specific to your condition. We pride ourselves on our ability to give personalized care to all our patients.

To schedule an appointment, call (855) 853-6542 or complete our contact form today!


The 6 Best Ways to Reduce Back Pain at the Office

If you’re sitting down at a desk all day, you’re probably no stranger to back pain. Being in the same position for eight hours straight can cause stiffness in your neck and tension in your back or shoulders. However, there are plenty of simple ways you can reduce your pain while still at the office.

When you need medical care for your spine pain, turn to Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery. No matter your condition, you can be confident that our doctors will do everything to alleviate your pain.

Practice Good Posture at Work

It’s easy to slouch at work, especially toward the end of the day. You should practice good posture to avoid any back or neck discomfort. Keep your head and neck aligned above your shoulders, and sit up straight. Keep your feet flat on the floor instead of crossing your legs. Consider using a footrest or phone book for extra support.

Find the Right Office Chair

The right office chair plays a significant role in reducing your back pain. When searching for the ideal chair for you, make sure it has all of the following options:

  • Adjustable height, backrest, and armrest
  • Lumbar support
  • Comfortable material

The perfect chair might be a little expensive, but it will be of good quality and last a long time. It will also reduce your chance of experiencing back pain, which could save you thousands down the road.

Make Sure the Monitor Is at an Appropriate Position

Your computer should be about an arm’s length away and be slightly below eye level. By having the monitor at an appropriate distance and angle, you will not have to crane your neck all day. You also shouldn’t need to lean over to reach a keyboard or mouse. If you’re squinting at your monitor, turn the brightness down, find a natural light setting on your computer, or consider a pair of blue-light glasses.

Have Comfortable Phone Calls

Most people will hold the phone between their shoulder and head so their hands are free, but this puts severe stress on your neck and shoulders. Instead, try using a headset. You’ll still be able to take notes without causing any pain. You can also use headphones with a built-in microphone to have phone meetings with ease.

Stretch Every Hour

Sitting in a chair for eight hours a day can make anyone uncomfortable. Stretching for at least 60 seconds is enough to reduce discomfort and stiffness. Strengthening your core muscles through yoga or sit-ups will work your stomach and back muscles, improve posture, and reduce pain. Every two hours, you should get up and go for a 5–10 minute walk.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

We all want to look professional at work, which often means wearing dress shoes or high heels. However, both options can quickly become uncomfortable. High heels can especially alter the body’s center of gravity, negatively affecting back support and posture. Consider keeping a comfortable pair of sneakers at your desk to change into when not in meetings or walking around the office.

Discover Back Pain Treatments at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery

It’s essential to monitor your back pain. Most discomfort will go away on its own within a few weeks, but if pain persists or increases, contact a doctor. At Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery, our board-certified doctors use state-of-the-art technology to address a variety of back conditions.

We utilize the latest techniques in minimally invasive surgery, so you can get back to the life you enjoyed before your discomfort began. Our doctors will always first try conservative healing methods, such as physical therapy, before suggesting surgery. Call (855) 853-6542 or complete our online contact form to ease your back pain today!


At-Home Physical Therapy Exercises to Ease Your Back Pain

When you experience chronic back pain, even driving to a physical therapy appointment can make matters worse. More than ever, individuals who suffer from constant tension in their back are looking for ways to relieve their pain without having to leave the comfort of their home. Fortunately, there are several ways to achieve and maintain pain relief without stepping a foot outside your door.

Regardless of whether you’re new to physical therapy or yoga, these simple stretches and poses will help those with even the most stubborn back pain feel comfortable and at ease. All you need is a space to move, and you’re ready to start practicing the best at-home physical therapy exercises for your back pain.

Yoga Poses for Back Pain Relief

For those who are unfamiliar with yoga, it may seem daunting at first. The idea of stretching or contorting your body into different positions can be overwhelming, especially for anyone who suffers from chronic pain. Although some individuals with sciatica pain and lower back tension may feel that they cannot participate in yoga stretching or high-intensity workouts, the following exercises were designed to help those with consistent discomfort and provide sustainable relief.

Cobra Pose

From a prone position with your hands beside your ribs and the tops of your feet pressed firmly against the floor, raise your head and neck upward. Hold this pose for a few seconds and then lower yourself back down gently. This is a great pose for those who suffer from lower back pain. Keep it low at first to determine what feels right.

Cat and Cow Pose

While on all fours with your back straight and head forward like a table, lift your back while tucking your head and tailbone downward. Hold this position for a few seconds and then invert your spine with your head and tailbone reaching up. Alternate these two positions every five to 10 seconds, inhaling with one and exhaling with the other. Each of these poses should be held until you can feel the muscles in your neck and back working.

Child’s Pose

While kneeling, move your arms forward until you are lying face down with your hands out and stretched flat. Other variations of this pose include moving your torso from side to side while keeping your arms outstretched to increase flexibility on both sides of the body, as well as crossing your arms underneath your head instead of keeping them flat in front of you. If this pose doesn’t feel good on your belly, keep your big toes together and extend your knees wider than your hips before lowering your torso.

If you encounter any pain or discomfort while you are performing any yoga pose, be sure to stop and give your body time to adjust. Yoga poses are not meant to be perfected the first time you attempt them. Take a break and try again tomorrow if the pain overwhelms you. Over time, these stretches will give you the opportunity to ease your pain relief quickly and effectively.

Physical Therapy Stretches for Easing Back Tension

Many exercises that are a part of physical therapy can easily be performed at home without any additional equipment. Several workouts have been designed for those who suffer from back pain, including the following stretches that work to help anyone suffering from chronic back pain, regardless of the degree of severity.

Bridges

One great workout for chronic pain is bridges, which can be done by lying down flat on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. From that position, keep your arms flat on either side of your body and lift just your hips. Ensure that your head and knees are aligned well, and hold this pose for several seconds before slowly lowering yourself back down.

Side Twists

Another exercise that increases pain relief for lower back discomfort is the side twist. With your back flat against the floor and your arms outstretched on either side of you in a T, bend and lift your knees. Slowly drop them to one side while twisting the rest of your body in the opposite direction. Hold this pose for a few seconds and then gently reverse the stretch.

Toe-Touches

One of the most commonly recommended at-home physical therapy exercises is the toe-touch. From standing, reach your arms over your head and stretch upward. Slowly bend at the waist and lower your arms until you are touching your toes. If you cannot touch your toes, try reaching your body in that direction as much as possible and feel the stretch along your lower back and spine.

Not all back pain can be alleviated by performing yoga or physical therapy exercises at home. Certain chronic tension can be a symptom of a larger issue, and if you feel that you may be experiencing a high level of pain in any region of your back, neck, or shoulders, your best option is to contact a trusted specialist who can help you find long-term solutions for your discomfort.

Find Lasting Back Pain Relief at OLSS

Here at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery, we take pride in helping our clients relieve tension due to chronic back pain and discomfort. Our specialists know that no two cases are exactly the same, which is why we are dedicated to approaching each patient’s case with the care and attention it deserves. Patients love our strategy for promoting healing and providing long-term relief.

If your back pain has become overwhelming, don’t wait another day to get help. Contact us at (855) 853-6542 or reach out to us online to find out more information about how our skilled and highly trained specialists can help you feel like yourself again.


Is Your Computer Causing You Back and Neck Pain?

If you’re anything like the 42% of Americans who work remotely from home, you may have noticed a significant increase in the time you spend sitting in front of the computer. It can be easy to get caught up in work and spend hours seated in the same position, but this practice can also have some painful side effects, including new or worsening back and neck pain.

More than ever, adults who use a computer for more than 20 hours each week are seeing a significant increase in the discomfort they experience after a prolonged time sitting at their computers. This trend is on the rise, but there are ways to solve this problem, the first of which is to identify the root cause of your pain.

Take a look below as we explore some of the different ways that your computer may be causing you neck and back pain, as well as ways that you can adjust your workstation to both reduce discomfort and increase productivity.

Adjust Your Monitor and Keyboard to the Right Position

One of the most common mistakes that occur among computer users is having an incorrect monitor and keyboard set-up. Many individuals work from laptops that have a fixed layout, whereas others work with a desktop computer that can be adjusted more easily. If you have a laptop, you should ensure that you:

  • Support your wrists with a rest pad at the keyboard and mouse
  • Keep the screen level with your vision (you should not have to bend your neck)
  • Use a laptop dock to raise the computer to a comfortable height

Individuals with a desktop computer have similar options, including:

  • Position your keyboard directly in front of you so your elbows are at a 90-degree angle
  • Keep your mouse at the same level as your keyboard
  • Consider placing the monitor on a stand to keep the screen at eye-level

Not only does the location of your computer screen and keyboard impact your neck and back, but it can also affect your overall posture. Maintaining good posture is an important part of avoiding long-term pain that can occur with extended computer use.

Reduce Discomfort with Better Computer Posture

It may seem simple, but something as easy as correcting your posture can change the way your neck and back feel while you are working on a computer. You may be accustomed to the hunched-over position that many individuals take when they are typing on a keyboard, but it can be irrevocably damaging to sit that way for hours each day.

In order to have the proper posture when using a computer, start with keeping the computer screen at eye level and your elbows bent at a 90-degree angle, as previously mentioned. In addition to angling your monitor and the way your arms rest when you type, you should also:

  • Ensure both of your feet are flat on the floor
  • Sit up straight with your back against the chair
  • Keep your head up and your chin forward

Many individuals who are used to sitting in an uncomfortable position in front of a computer for hours can have difficulty transitioning into a new posture. This is often due to long-term tension and tight muscles, but once you develop the habit, your improved posture will be able to help reduce the discomfort you experience from working at a computer.

Is a Standing Desk Good for Relieving Neck and Back Pain?

The standing desk has become much more popular in recent years, with many offices incorporating them into their layout. These desks provide a variety of benefits for some employees, especially those who suffer from lower back pain and stiff joints.

Anyone looking to add a standing desk to their home office should keep in mind that they will receive the most benefit from:

  • Standing on a soft surface rather than a firm one
  • Shifting positions every 20 minutes
  • Sitting down and resting every 30 minutes

Standing for an extended period of time can be just as damaging as prolonged sitting and may cause muscle tension and stiffness. Anyone looking to invest in a standing desk should look for one that is comfortable and ergonomically designed, allowing for the right amount of relaxation, focus, and pain relief.

Find Long-Term Back and Neck Pain Relief at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgeons

When at-home remedies aren’t enough to bring you pain relief, it may be time to speak with an experienced medical professional about your back and neck pain. After years of sitting improperly at a computer, you may have developed a condition that only a doctor can diagnose and treat. If you’re looking for long-term pain relief from back and neck discomfort, the team at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgeons can help you.

Don’t suffer from chronic neck and back pain any longer. Call us today at (855) 853-6542 or reach out to us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our trusted physicians.


Can Your Weight Impact Your Joint Health?

Experiencing joint pain is a struggle, especially when the discomfort is persistent. It can impact your ability to live your life to the fullest and prevent you from doing the things you love. Simple tasks like walking through a grocery store or playing with your pet can be hindered when joint pain is chronic and severe.

While there are a number of reasons that your joints may be causing you discomfort, some studies indicate that weight may be one of the factors that impact bone and joint health. If you’ve been wondering whether your weight is potentially worsening or contributing to your pain, take a look below as we discuss the possibility of its impact on the health of your joints.

Understanding the Basics of Joint Pain

Many are familiar with the discomfort of joint pain, but it is often a surprise for them to learn that this pain can come from different sources and not just the joints themselves. Certain causes of joint pain are directly related to the surrounding muscle, cartilage, tendon, nerves, or ligaments, or even a combination of these factors. Inflammation is often attributed to joint pain, as well, which can worsen over time with some disorders such as osteoarthritis. Other common causes of joint pain include:

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Tendinitis
  • Bursitis
  • Gout

Joint pain can vary in severity, ranging from mild to intense depending on the circumstance or cause. Pain that comes from a chronic disorder such as arthritis may be different from the discomfort from temporary conditions such as tendinitis. It can often be difficult to identify what condition you are suffering from, but an experienced specialist may be able to help.

Connections Between Weight and Joint Pain

Many physicians believe that certain symptoms of joint pain can be tied to an individual’s weight, stating that patients who are obese or overweight may experience joint pain more frequently because of the pressure that their weight puts on their bones and muscles. Joints help keep the body flexible, allowing you to move, and putting too much pressure on them can prevent mobility and create lasting discomfort.

Doctors often note that chronic pain in or around the knees is particularly common among individuals of a higher weight. Due to the frequency with which our knees assist us when standing, walking, or even sitting, the added pressure of more weight on the body can impact the strength of the joints and reduce overall mobility.

Studies have indicated that other areas of the body, including the spine, hips, and ankles, may also be impacted by weight. Pain along the spine may relate to the degeneration of the intervertebral discs, which occurs with age but can occasionally accelerate in overweight individuals, causing intense discomfort and poor mobility.

Treatments for Chronic Joint Pain

According to studies conducted by Harvard Medicine, persistent and severe joint pain is common among those of a higher weight. Luckily, there are a variety of treatment options available.

Many doctors recommend that their patients lose weight before trying other methods of treatment, and while this has helped some overweight individuals find relief, it can prevent those living with pain not caused by weight from getting the help they need when they need it. Each case of joint pain is unique to the individual, of course, and some patients may need to try multiple methods before identifying one that works best for them.

Fortunately, many modern therapies and treatments exist to allow individuals with joint pain to experience long-term relief. Non-surgical options, such as epidural steroid injections and physical therapy, have been known to successfully reduce the severity of joint pain in patients who suffered from discomfort and inflammation in their hands, wrists, spine, and knees.

Other pain-relieving options are surgical, used often for those who have attempted noninvasive treatments in the past with no success or significant change in their discomfort. Many doctors now have minimally invasive techniques that allow them to provide long-term relief while reducing the length of time the patient will spend in recovery.

Treat Your Joint Pain with the Qualified Specialists at OLSS

If you have begun to experience pain or inflammation in your joints, it may be time to consult an experienced medical professional to learn more about how you can treat it. Knowing where to start can be overwhelming, especially when it comes to dealing with chronic pain, but the trusted specialists at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery have years of experience with patients just like you, and they’re here to help.

When you’re ready to start seeing an improvement in your joint health, give us a call at (855) 853-6542 or reach out to us online to learn about scheduling a free consultation today.