Keywords: home traction unit, skeletal traction, home traction devices, cervical traction collar, cervical traction devices, neck traction device, home cervical traction.
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Much of the frustration surrounding neck pain is that patients feel trapped. They feel there's so little they can do for themselves. They are spending large amounts of money, perhaps after an old whiplash injury that was not correctly managed, on chiropractic, physiotherapy, perhaps are facing neck surgery; and frankly the results are not always satisfactory.
Having been in practice for thirty plus years now, I keep encouraging patients to use their own resources and intuitions. I show spouses how to do gentle massage, I encourage use of a sloping desk, neck exercises; and a home traction unit. There actually is quite a lot you can do for yourself. Home traction devices are one of those things.
There's a collar that you slip around your neck, which is attached via a pulley to a bag of water. Decide with advice from your chiropractor with how many litres to begin.
Lie quietly on your back, having your neck stretched, listening to some of your favourite relaxing music for about twenty minutes. Not tchaikovsky's cannons symphony!
There are commercially available units that can be used for skeletal traction. An inversion device is good for the low back but it doesn't help much for your neck, if at all; there are any number of cervical traction devices on the market.
When looking for home traction devices, I personally prefer those where you are lying down, rather than sitting. Home cervical traction is definitely something that can contribute meaningfully and cheaply to your well being. Plus it gives you the feeling that you are regaining a measure of control over your nasty neck.
The device above costs around one hundred dollars.
Ex South Africa that is, but I'm sure your local orthopedic store will have them. Try the internet.
An innovative patient who had a neck injury with radiating pain down his arm, made this little neck traction device. What's nice about it, is that it tucks away against the wall, but is very easy to swing into position when needed. It cost him no more than ten dollars to make.
What you will also need is a cervical traction collar to fit around your chin and hea, but that you can easily make from the design below. Another option is a cheap kid's helmet, with a hole drilled in the top for the cord.
How much water in the jerrycan? Officially no more than 7kg, 7 litres of water, but some people go far higher. Build up slowly from 1 to 2kg for about 20 minutes.
I've certainly noticed that he is needing less treatment since he started using it. For over a year prior to treatment he was unable to ride his motor cycle because it caused so much pain in his neck and arm. Now after some months in care, and the use of his neck traction device he tells me he is planning an extended trip on his new dream machine through the former Soviet republics. Estonia, Latvia; ah, how I wish I could join him!
Update; The trip was a great success. He had some neck discomfort if he rode more than 5 hours a day, which he had to do twice, but overall a very happy holiday. Chiropractic plus a home cervical traction.
Cervical facet syndrome
The sudden onset of acute neck pain, in the absence of recent trauma, is usually caused by the entrapment of a small slither of the capsule between the faces of adjoining facets.
The Chiropractic adjustment, followed by continuous skeleton traction and ice provides a powerful therapy to reduce the offending fragment of the capsule and provide rapid pain relief.
Stiff neck exercises for neck pain
What else can you do yourself for your horrid neck? A disciplined set
of exercises done on a daily basis can also help you regain control of
your neck pain.
If you have a horrid neck then you will probably never be independent of your chiropractor, just the same if you have diabetes or any one of a very long list of medical conditions. But we do our best to encourage you to make the best of your own resources. Hence a Home traction unit
The extremities of the body, those parts directly in contact with the environment, your hands and feet, your face and head generally, are far more sensitive to pain. Head neck pain, whether from your neck, your jaw joint, a rotten tooth, a sinus infection, is a huge problem in today's society. Cheap or free pain pills are not the answer.
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If you really want to improve your health think home nutrition, think too of a vegetable patch, and even making a compost pile. For that you need a little more room. You'd be astonished how many green beans you will get off just a few pole bean plants. Enough for a daily green bean salad for weeks and it's all really dead easy. Yes, you will have to turn off the television one weekend a month.
So too think support from your cartilage. Cartilage has no blood supply of its own and is utterly dependent on fluid in the vicinity that is rich in oxygen and nutrients. Making a bouillon from your chicken bones is one big helper. So too a diet of fatty fish at least twice a week for its omega 3.
For the vegetarian think no further than freshly ground flax seed. Cheap and very easy.
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Interesting challenges of the day
1. Mr B has the trophy for the most acute neck in February. He has quite advanced lower neck arthritis for a forty year old, thanks to a severe fall on the head from a trampoline. But this is upper cervical pain. Right rotation is simply impossible. Luckily he is improving rapidly, eighty percent better he says after three treatments. See cervical facet syndrome.
2. Mrs C is a new patient with a long history of lower back pain, hip pain and pain in both feet. We'll see how we get on, Rome wasn't built in a day.
3. Miss U sprained her ankle two months ago, wearing high heels. She still has severe mid foot pain. Xrays and perhaps a CT scan.
4. Mr V is 86 years old and hurt his back helping his wife into the car. Just one treatment of the sacroiliac joint and he's eighty percent better. It's not always like that.
5. Mr W lay on his back knocking down a pillar. Turning his head causes severe vertigo. He needs the Epley exercises, not pills, research shows. Update, he's fine.
6. Mrs X, a young mother has severe lower back pain, with numbness down the posterior thigh, calf and side of foot. It started after a long drive in the car. Update, she's forty percent less painful after four treatments, but the leg is still numb. Update two; she 60% better, but it's slow and is going to take the full 6 weeks to heal. Further update; a setback, after lifting her child she now has leg pain. It's going to the be difficult.
7. Mrs Y, a 70 year old woman is on maintenance care fo a nasty lumbar stenosis despite having to do everything at home. Her husband has a hospital acquired infection in the shoulder. After 4 operations he is incapacitated and going rapidly down hill.
8. Mrs Z, an 78 year old woman is doing remarkably well with a bad sciatica. But at over 200 lbs she is not losing weight, in fact gaining despite my suggestions. She's high risk for a stroke. Referral to a dietician to crack the whip.
9. Mr A, a 73 year old engineer, still working, is doing fine after a long episode of lower back pain. Some pain on the side of the hip remains after five treatments. Reassured him it's not hip arthritis.
10. Mrs B, a 64 year old woman has had Scheuermanns disease; it's left with a spinal kyphosis and chronic middorsal pain. She responds well to chiropractic treatment, provides she come every six weeks or so for treatment.
11. Mr C, a young engineer fell off his mountain bike injuring his cervical spine and pelvis. Luckily both responded very quickly to a few chiropractic adjustments. Update: his neck is sore again. It all goes back to a whiplash injury ten years ago when he was rammed by a fully laden truck carrying a load of stone. Time for Xrays.
12. Mrs D, a middle aged woman with hip pain of one year duration, despite other treatment. Xrays reveal an impingement syndrome and early hip arthritis. There's much to be done.
13. Both Mrs E and I can't believe how much better her lower back and leg pain are. Surgery for a scoliosis and spondylolysthesis three years ago helped greatly for one year. But then her leg went lame and weak. He was responded extremely well despite all expectations.
And so the day goes. Chiropractors shouldn't be treating the elderly? Bunkum.
Have a problem that's not getting better? Looking for a different slant on your pain? Want to pose a question?
Greetings, Dr B.
You helped me quite some time back with a soothing and professional
response which turned out to be exactly correct. I now consult a local chiropractor.
You write a superb newsletter, too.
Your own unresolved problem. Pose a question
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You visited this chiropractic help site no doubt because you have a problem that is not resolving and want to know more about what chiropractors do.
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