I get asked on a daily basis which bed is the best. My honest answer is whichever bed provides the most support while allowing a comfortable night’s sleep. I also share that my best advice is to use the 90 day money back guarantee. I know that this sounds like a cheeky answer but finding the right bed can be tough. You don’t want to invest your time and money into a bed that is going to cause harm. By the same token, it can take 30 days or more to really figure out if your new bed is going to work. That saying, knowing where to begin in helpful. Here are some key points to consider:
1. Keeping the spine in neutral is the most important thing you can do. Beds that are too soft typically let your pelvis sink which can cause low back problems. Conversely, beds that are too firm will push too hard on the shoulders and hips, causing discomfort that can keep you from a well rested sleep. A good bed will help distribute the weight making it more comfortable while keeping your spine in neutral.
2. Your body type will determine what type of bed you need. The less dense a person is, the less support is needed so a soft bed can be ok. In addition, if you have large hips you may need a little more cushion to be comfortable and keep your back in neutral. Same goes for broad shoulders.
3. How you sleep makes a difference. Side sleepers typically need a little softer bed because their shoulders and hips are the major points of contact. Back sleepers should choose a more firm mattress to help support the more distributed pressure. Stomach sleepers should learn to sleep on their side or back after age 5.
After taking your body type into consideration, now you have to find the right mattress. Mattresses are very well designed these days with lots of options that can help even the playing field. This is especially true if you and your spouse have different needs. Here are your options for beds:
1. Innerspring mattresses are the most common. Spring count is the trick here. The more, typically the better the bed. A good spring mattress can work out great for you. It can also break down quickly and sag in high pressure areas.
2. Memory foam is the latest trend but a good one. Memory foam conforms to the body which is soft but provides good support. It can be an excellent choice but some do complain of feeling too hot or feeling like they feel a little trapped. These mattresses are very durable.
3. Latex mattresses are very similar to memory foam in terms of support and durability but spring back a little quicker so there isn’t that trapped feeling. They also seem to be a little better if feeling hot is a problem.
4. Air mattresses (not the kind you suffer on when you visit your family) have some major advantages. A good air bed will have several air chambers and will be adjustable. This is especially good with vastly different body types. The downside, of course, is that there is a possibility of it leaking.
5. Water beds have come a long way. In the past, I would have said avoid anything that can leak. Now, it is possible to get a good water bed that gives good support. Unfortunately, very few people will do well with a water bed and they are a much bigger hassle to return.
If you are in the market for a new mattress you should check out my friend, Christine’s blog, “From Date to Diapers.” She has a contest where she has teamed up with Sealy to give away a free mattress set. These mattresses have a great track record and lots of options to fit your needs.
The final thing to consider about a bed is that your issues might not be with your bed but with your back. If your spine isn’t functioning well, a good bed might help but chances are you just need to restore the function. Of course, I am happy to help with that, too!
It’s the last day of the year and people are starting to come up with New Year’s resolutions. I would venture to say that at least one resolution you have involves your health in some way. Let me give you 10 good reasons chiropractic should be included in your action plan.
1. Chiropractic helps control pain. Pain is a great de-motivator/distraction. When you get adjusted, you not only get an endorphine release but you also close down the nerve pathways that cause pain. This will allow you to work out with less pain.
2. Chiropractic improves joint function. Working out on joints that are not working properly can create worse problems.
3. Chiropractic improves balance. Balance is very important to good health. Getting adjusted regularly helps improve your balance. This is closely associated with proprioception which was the topic of the previous post.
4. Chiropractic will help improve your posture which will help you look and feel your best. Correcting the posture of the low back will especially help decrease the “pooch.”
5. Chiropractic improves nerve flow to the vital organs. When your organs are working properly your body will be healthier. This is especially true for the organs that deal with elimination of waste like the gut, the kidneys and the liver. When you get the gunk out you will be healthier. This is especially true after binging since Halloween.:)
6. Chiropractic improves hormone function. The thyroid gland controls metabolism and is critical to good health. In addition, balancing estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, etc. can make a huge difference in your energy.
7. Chiropractic is good for your feet. When you make that resolution to go running and your feet are killing you, we can help adjust the foot or do some soft tissue work to get you back out there.
8. Chiropractic can increase your lung capacity. When you get adjusted it allows the joints of and around the rib cage to be well lubricated and move freely. This allows proper inhalation and exhalation. Good breathing equals more oxygen which leads to more efficient cells and better health.
9. Chiropractic can help your sinuses. When you feel like you cannot breathe because the cold you caught just before Christmas just won’t go away, come in for some cranial adjusting and experience what it’s like to breathe through your nose again.
10. Chiropractic restores the body’s ability the work, heal, and function properly!
There you have it! 10 good reasons you should include chiropractic care in your goal to be healthier. See you soon!
I was talking with a patient last week who had just come from her oncologist. To help with the side effects of chemotherapy and to help fight off the cancer cells, she has been doing hour long sessions in my hyperbaric chamber 2-3 times per week. Her energy has been remarkable during chemo. Very little fatigue. One would never know she even had cancer and was on chemo. By the way, she is in her late 70’s.
Two of the most, if not the most, important spinal stabilizing muscles of the back are the quadratus lumbori. (quadratus lumborum singular or QL). This exercise is the most difficult of the 4 stabilization exercises but is extremely beneficial.
Have you ever heard someone say that they just got their back “popped” or “cracked” by their chiropractor? I get asked all the time what that means. For everyone who already has an idea of what an adjustment looks like, I am simply going to explain the “pop” or “crack.”
First of all, the technical term for the sound is, cavitation. Wikipedia’s definition is: the formation of vapour bubbles of a flowing liquid in a region where the pressure of the liquid falls below its vapor pressure. Makes perfect sense, right?
OK, here is how I explain it. Joints are where bones meet. Between the bones is a joint capsule. It is a space filled with fluid that allows the joint to easily move without grinding the bones together. When you open up or close a joint quickly it changes the pressure in the capsule. With a sudden change in pressure, gas that is in the liquid escapes causing a popping sound. It’s is just like opening a soda pop bottle or can which is kept under pressure to keep the carbon dioxide dissolved in the liquid.
So, the next time you hear someone pop their knuckles or get an adjustment just remember that the popping sound is just gas expanding because of a change in pressure.
Have you ever noticed that there are really only two types of auto accidents? There is the, “My car was smashed-I am lucky to be alive-wonder if they are going to total my car-I am hurting all over,” crash. And then, there is the, “It Was Just a Fender-Bender,” accident. You may be surprised, but the Fender-Bender where you just got a little neck pain and a slight headache may actually turn out to be the much more serious accident.
In your profession is there a comment or question you get asked a lot that just sets you off? For me it is someone trying to tell me that once you start chiropractic care you can never stop. It is so ridiculous that I often respond, “I once had a patient who quit and she died the next day.”