When a patient visits their chiropractor due to a work injury, the chiropractor routinely looks beyond the actual injury and addresses concern towards their station setup, whether they use ergonomically correct equipment, and whether they utilize proper work techniques. The goal is both to help relieve your pain and determine how to avoid what caused it in the first place. Work injuries can occur in a variety of different work environments including construction sites, offices, warehouses, and retail stores. Much of the time, the causes of pain in the workplace include:
- Falls caused by Overexertion
- Improper lifting
- Repetitive strain
- Blunt force trauma
- Exposure to Chemicals
Most workplace injuries are the result of soft tissue and joint damage. Improper lifting techniques are one of the most common reasons for the occurrences of pain in the workplace. You may consider visiting a chiropractor if you are experiencing any of the following pains due to your workplace injuries or otherwise:
- Back injuries (sprains, strains, disc problems)
- Neck injuries (sprains, strains, joint dysfunction)
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Headache (caused by muscle tension, joint dysfunction, or poor posture)
- Numbness and tingling of extremities.
Describing a range of injuries to the neck caused by or related to a sudden distortion of the neck. Cervical acceleration-deceleration” (CAD) describes the mechanism of the injury, while the term “whiplash-associated
There are four phases that occur during “whiplash”:
- Initial position (before the collision),
disorders” (WAD) describes the injury and symptoms.
In the initial position, there is no force on the neck due to inertia keeping it stable. Anterior longitudinal ligament injuries in whiplash may lead to cervical instability. They explain that during the retraction phase that is when the actual “whiplash” occurs since there is an unusual loading of soft tissues. The next phase is the extension, the whole neck and head switches to extension, and it is stopped or limited by the head restraint. The rebound phase transpires as result of the phases that are mentioned.
During the refraction phase the spine forms an S-Shaped curve, and this caused by the flexion in the upper planes and hyperextension at the lower planes and this exceed their physiological limits this phase the injuries occur to the lower cervical vertebrae. At the extension phase all cervical vertebrae and the head are fully extended, but do not surpass their physiological limits. Most of the injuries happen in C-5 and C-6.
Symptoms reported by sufferers include: pain and aching to the neck and back, referred pain to the shoulders, sensory disturbance (such as pins and needles) to the arms and legs, and headaches. Symptoms can appear directly after the injury, but often are not felt until days afterwards. Whiplash is usually confined to the spine. The most common areas of the spine affected by whiplash are the neck and middle of the spine. “Neck” pain is very common between the shoulder and the neck.
Sports injuries are injuries that occur in athletic activities. They can result from acute trauma, or from overuse of a particular body part.
Traumatic injuries account for most injuries in contact sports such as Ice Hockey, Association football, rugby league, rugby union, Australian rules football, Gaelic football and American football because of the dynamic and high collision nature of these sports. Collisions with the ground, objects, and other players are common, and unexpected dynamic forces on limbs and joints can cause injury.
Traumatic injuries can include:
- Contusion or bruise – damage to small blood vessels which causes bleeding within the tissues.
- Strain – trauma to a muscle due to overstretching and tearing of muscle fibers
- Sprain – an injury in a joint, caused by the ligament being stretched beyond its own capacity
- Wound – abrasion or puncture of the skin
- Bone fracture
- Head injury
- Spinal cord injury
In sports medicine, a catastrophic injury is defined as severe trauma to the human head, spine, or brain.
Concussions in sport became a major issue in the United States in the 2000s, as evidence connected repeated concussions with chronic traumatic encephalopathy and increased suicide risk.
Overuse and repetitive stress injury problems associated with sports include:
- Runner’s knee
- Tennis elbow
Some activities have particular risks:
- Bicycle safety
- Gun safety
- Sailing ship accidents
Soft tissue injuries
When soft tissue experiences trauma, the dead and damaged cells release chemicals, which initiate an inflammatory response. Inflammation is characterized by pain, localized swelling, heat, redness and a loss of function. Small blood vessels are damaged and opened up, producing bleeding within the tissue. In the body’s normal reaction, a small blood clot is formed in order to stop this bleeding and from this clot special cells (called fibroblasts) begin the healing process by laying down scar tissue.
The inflammatory stage is therefore the first phase of healing. However, too much of an inflammatory response in the early stage can mean that the healing process takes longer and a return to activity is delayed. Sports injury treatments are intended to minimize the inflammatory phase of an injury, so that the overall healing process is accelerated. Intrinsic and extrinsic factors are determinant for the healing process.
Sports injuries can be treated and managed by using the P.R.I.C.E.S… DR. ABC, and T.O.T.A.P.S regimes:
|P – Protect R – Rest I – Ice C – Compression E – Elevation S – Stabilize||D – Danger R – Response||A – Airway B – Breathing C – Circulation||T – Talk O – Observe T – Touch A – Active movement P – Passive movement S – Skills test|
The primary inflammatory stage typically lasts around 5 days and all treatment during this time is designed to address the cardinal signs of inflammation – pain, swelling, redness, heat and a loss of function. Compression sportswear is becoming very popular with both professional and amateur athletes. These garments are thought to both reduce the risk of muscle injury and speed up muscle recovery.
The practice of exercise, both cardiovascular and muscle strengthening, is, coupled with regular chiropractic care, an immensely important aid to managing lower back pain. Exercise promotes maintaining properly toned muscles, better circulation, and healthy digestion. There is strong evidence supporting that exercise is nearly as effective as all other non-surgical treatments in the relief and treatment of lower back pain.
Through the use of various stretches and exercises, rehabilitation is used to strengthen the parts of body that influence posture and movement. It is through practicing rehabilitation that we aim to correct poor posture and imbalanced movements in a way the completely resolves the problem as well as minimizing the chance of their reoccurring in the future.
Massage is the manipulation of superficial and deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue using various techniques, to enhance function, aid in the healing process, decrease muscle reflex activity, inhibit motor-neuron excitability, promote relaxation and well-being, and as a recreational activity.
Evidence strongly suggests early mobilization and range of motion exercises greatly improve recovery from nearly any injury or surgery.
Soft Tissue Techniques
Soft tissue therapy is the assessment, treatment and management of soft tissue injury, pain and dysfunction primarily of the neuromusculoskeletal system. Using the Soft Tissue Technique, firm pressure is directly applied to specific areas to relax hypertonic muscles and stretch tight fascial structures. Massage techniques may also be used as part of a treatment application. Sustained pressure can also be used to alleviate tight areas within muscles and fascia.
The most commonly used adjustment technique by chiropractors, Diversified Technique is characterized by a high-velocity, low-amplitude thrust. Quick and shallow thrusts often result in a cavitation of a joint, causing the popping noise that is often associated with chiropractic adjustments. The objective of this technique is to restore movement and alignment to the spine as well as restore health to joints suffering from joint dysfunction.