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Microtrauma and your health

by Dr. Amy Spoelstra
| June 9, 2010 9:00 PM

When we think about our body and some of the aches and pains we experience from day to day, it is often times easy to figure out the origin of our symptoms. If you were in a car crash and you walked away with a bit of neck pain, you could most likely attribute that pain to the crash and the trauma your body experienced. The same can be said for a wide variety of injuries.

However, there are times when pain seems to creep in from out of the blue when we least expect it without a change in our normal behavior. Whether it is a sharp and prevalent pain, or just a dull ache, it may keep you from enjoying certain activities. These pains can often times be the symptoms of microtrauma.

Major traumas like car accidents and sports injuries give us a clear understanding of where our pain has originated. Microtraumas can happen in places we seldom think about our health. Such things as driving, sitting at a desk for seven hours a day, repetitively sitting on a wallet inside the back pocket, carrying a heavy purse on one shoulder, or wearing shoes that place our feet in awkward positions are all things that can cause injury to our body over time.

These are known as microtraumas, and average people will experience them every day of their lives. We all know we need to nourish our bodies through diet and exercise to keep our physical ability at a peak level, but it is just as important that we analyze our day to day activity for the smaller stresses we are placing on the body.

Very few of us probably stop to think about our posture while sitting at a desk or while driving a vehicle. If we did, we might notice that we are slouching, placing our arms at strange angles to type on a keyboard, or always steering our vehicles with the same arm while sitting in an awkward, unnatural position. These simple things, over time, can have a great impact.

One of the more serious implications of microtrauma is the creation of subluxations within your spinal bones. You can think of your spine as a tower of blocks. That tower is meant to be straight and stable. If that tower shifts due to an outside stress, some of the blocks will have to move around in order to stabilize the structure.

The same can be said for your spine. Let's say you place your wallet in the back pocket of your jeans everyday and then sit on it for a long period of time. Although you may be used to the feeling, you are unknowingly creating a microtrauma within your spine due to the awkward angle created by the bulge in your back pocket. By sitting at an awkward angle, you create instability within your spine and your bones will actually move around to stabilize themselves.

This repetitive stress on the spine can cause your spinal bones to remain in an unnatural position. This is known as a subluxation. These subluxations can be happening in one or more bones of your spine. They create stress on the nerves that exit the spine and carry messages out into the body. This stress can cause dysfunction within our nervous system and hamper our health in a wide variety of ways.

One way to combat the microtraumas that life throws our way is through chiropractic care. By ridding the spine of subluxations, a chiropractor can restore proper nervous system function and help your body operate at its optimal level. We will always fall victim to microtraumas since they are a necessary part of day to day living, but we can make sure they don't cause great damage to our health over time. Through a simple, gentle adjustment performed by a chiropractor, we can reverse the damage caused by microtraumas and stop the symptoms from hampering our health.

To learn more about chiropractic care, please give us a call at (208) 762-1414 or find us on the web at www.CDAHealth.org. You can also find us on Twitter or Facebook by searching "Spoelstra Family Chiropractic."

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