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All Posts Tagged: tension

PROLONGED SITTING RESULTS IN THINNING OF THE BRAIN

When it comes to memory loss, there are many risk factors including head injury, poor nutrition, lack of sleep, older age, alcohol consumption, stroke, and other medical conditions. Prolonged sitting at middle-age has now been added to the list of factors that can increase the risk of memory loss.

It has been said that sitting is the new smoking in relation to general health.  This notion was recently confirmed by researchers.  Sitting too much is linked to changes in a section of the brain that is critical for memory, according to a preliminary study by UCLA researchers of middle-aged and older adults.

Researchers recruited people ages 45 to 75 and asked them about their physical activity levels and the average number of hours per day they spent sitting. Each person had a high-resolution MRI, which provided a detailed look at the medial temporal lobe, or MTL, a brain region involved in the formation of new memories.

The results revealed that sedentary behaviour is a significant predictor of thinning of the medial temporal lobe and its substructures and that physical activity, even at high levels, does not offset the harmful effects of sitting for extended periods.

MTL thinning can be a precursor to cognitive decline and dementia in middle-aged and older adults. Reducing sedentary behavior may be a possible target for interventions designed to improve brain health in people at risk for Alzheimer’s disease, researchers said.

Researchers hope that these findings inspire healthy brain habits, at home and work, such as taking a 5-minute break to stand up and walk around every 30 to 60 minutes.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question or concerns regarding the above article or for any health related issues.  At Westview Wellness Centre, North Vancouver, our team of Chiropractors, Massage Therapists, Acupuncturists, and Psychologists are always available to discuss your health related concerns.  For more details about this study please refer to the following:

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0195549

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OVERVIEW OF COMMON NON-MIGRAINE HEADACHES

One of the most common types of pain is a headache. Many people resort to over-the counter medications to relieve their headache, instead of trying to eliminate the cause of it. Many patients with headaches seek alternative forms of therapy, with the most common being chiropractic care. Below is an overview of the most common forms of non-migraine headaches that could be relieved by various natural means of treatment.

Tension Headache
These headaches are often worse in the afternoon or early evening. The pain is usually on both sides of the head and/or around the eyes. Tension headaches can last for days or weeks, and come and go over a long period of time. They are occasionally relieved with over-the-counter analgesics. Tender points and tight muscles are usually found in the neck. Deep massage to the muscles at the back of the head and neck helps, as does ultrasound and moist heat to the same area. Supplement options include valerian root and passionflower for stress reduction, and magnesium and calcium for muscle tension.

Cervicogenic Headache
Cervicogenic headaches often present with a reduction in neck motion and associated neck pain. They are due to referred pain from the soft tissues and joints in the neck. The headache is usually worse with head movement. The primary recommended form of treatment is chiropractic manipulation of the neck.

Cluster Headache
These headaches, which are felt around the eyes, are more common in middle-aged males. They “cluster” over days or weeks and then end, and appear again several weeks or months later. Cluster headaches typically begin at the same time each day or night. They are short-lived, lasting an average of 30 minutes, but they are extremely intense. During an attack, there is often tearing and a runny nose on the same side as the headache. There is usually a history of smoking and possible alcohol abuse. The cause of cluster headaches is unknown. Cluster headaches generally decrease in frequency and intensity as the individual ages. Conservative management includes moist heat, trigger point therapy, ultrasound, and spray-and-stretch to reduce muscle tension, cervical and upper thoracic chiropractic adjustments to decrease contributing joint dysfunction, avoidance of screen glare from computers and televisions, and stress reduction.

Hypertensive Headache
These headaches are pulsing and occur early in the morning. They are associated with high blood pressure, obesity, stress, lack of exercise, high sodium diets, drug sensitivity, kidney disease, and heart disease. Hypertensive headaches come on when blood pressure is 200/120 mm Hg or higher. The headache may become worse when reclining and is less severe when seated. Management includes dietary modifications (high fiber, low salt); avoidance of caffeine, high fat, sugar, and alcohol; and exercise.

Sinus Headaches
These headaches are attributable to inflammation of the mucosa of the sinuses from allergies or bacterial or viral infections. The headache is generally felt over the forehead and cheeks, and occasionally around the teeth and behind the ears. Sinus headaches are worse in the morning and are aggravated or relieved by head position, which may help or hinder nasal drainage. Conservative treatment options include avoiding known allergens, correcting areas of cervical dysfunction that may hinder sinus drainage, and using a vaporizer or hot compresses on the face to clear sinus congestion. Anti-inflammatory herbs such as turmeric, ginger, and feverfew are of some benefit.

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