Sponsored by Pivotal Health Solutions Chiropractic
Cervical curve loss is becoming an epidemic due to widespread mobile technology use.
Chiropractors are beginning to observe a rapidly growing patient base exhibiting signs of Forward Head Posture (FHP) and Cervical Curve Loss (CCL) as well as the common symptoms associated with these conditions. Can modern chiropractic thrive if we continue to rely solely on the segmental model of care?
In 1992, the estimated percentage of the U.S. adult population showing signs of Forward Head Posture (FHP) was 66 percent. Today, this estimate has grown to approximately 90 percent – due in large part to the increasing use of hand-held mobile devices and laptop technology in our daily lives. This epidemic, often referred to as the tech-neck epidemic, is also starting to affect children at an alarming rate.
With the onset of deteriorating spinal health occurring earlier than ever, is there a protocol of care that can be that can be seamlessly integrated into any existing practice regardless of technique that will combat this epidemic? The answer is yes. Structural changes and symptomatic relief can be consistently achieved when cervical curve remodeling is incorporated into a patient’s treatment plan.
A majority of the conditions treated in chiropractic clinics today (e.g. neck pain, headaches/migraines, back pain, shoulder pain, etc.) are disorders that can be attributed to FHP and CCL. I am going to discuss three things you can add to your practice that will:
- Improve long-term outcomes in patients with symptoms commonly related to FHP & CCL
- Create a sustainable patient base built on maintaining optimal spinal structure/posture (e.g. sagittal balance) throughout life
1. Cervical curve remodeling
The iTrac Cervical Curve Remodeling System is an effective tool for restoring the cervical curve and reducing forward head posture. This system puts soft tissues under a moderate degree of progressive, unremitting tension which elongates the anterior spinal ligaments and muscles leading to improved structure and stability.
How it works:
- A computer-controlled application of counter-balancing traction forces is applied to the patient as he or she is positioned in cervical extension
- This produces a stretch in the anterior cervical spine soft tissues, most importantly the anterior longitudinal ligament
- This results in an increase in length, strength and flexibility of the anterior cervical soft-tissues
- The cervical spine regains its lordotic curve
- The head returns to its healthy position directly over the shoulders
- Once the curve is restored and the posture is corrected, periodic application of extension traction forces allows the spine to maintain this lordosis despite ongoing exposure to detrimental postural positions in daily life.
2. Posture corrective exercises
When combined with cervical curve remodeling, posture corrective exercises help restore normal muscle movement patterns and muscular stability
How It works:
- Strengthening the deep neck flexors and the scapular stabilizers allows the patient to maintain his or her curve and posture by strengthening and stabilizing the spine and improving muscle movement patterns
- Assists with symptom reduction due to improved posture
- Strengthens the muscles needed to maintain healthy posture
3. Pre- and post-X-rays (or posture photos)
- Pre- and post-images (X-ray or posture analysis) provide an objective, easy to understand snapshot of the patient’s progress with structural corrective care
- Because all kinds of doctors will refer their patients to chiropractor for underlying pain (dentists, orthodontists, other chiropractors, etc.) pre and post images help with relaying a patient’s progress to these referring doctors.
Smartphones and other handheld technologies are a way of life which means they are not going away any time soon. By preparing your practice to meet the growing need for advanced cervical spine rehabilitation, you are investing in the future health of your patients as well as the future health of your practice.
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Jarrod Nichols, DC, was born and raised in rural Kansas. After completing undergraduate studies in kinesiology at Kansas State University he received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa where he graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2004. Nichols is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and a Certified Fellow of Chiropractic Biophysics. In 2005 he opened Nichols Chiropractic in Manhattan, Kansas where he lives with his wife, Shawn Nichols, DDS and their two sons, Mason and Sutton. While receiving his training in chiropractic biophysics, Nichols observed a chasm between the abundant peer reviewed research supporting structural spinal correction and the lack of sophisticated therapy equipment available to apply the science in clinical practice. It was his desire to create a modern extension traction therapy system utilizing advanced technology to provide doctors and patients with effective and comfortable structural correction solutions. The iTrac Cervical Curve Remodeling System utilizes computer controlled pneumatics to achieve measurable, consistent structural correction. Nichols is pleased to work with Pivotal Health Solutions to offer clinical support to doctors world-wide as they advance the level of care offered to their patients through the utilization of iTrac therapy.
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