All posts by Michael Brown

Can Osteopathy help treat foot pain?

Hi, it’s Joanna from Cram osteopaths. This week is national feet week. I have my foot model here and I thought I would tell you how osteopaths can help with feet and how we do much more than just necks and spine pain, which is normally what people would associate osteopathy with.
The most common conditions that we might see with the feet would include plantar fasciitis, Morton’s neuroma, and also sciatic pain. I’m going to quickly talk through these conditions and how they can present themselves. If you are getting any of these symptoms then please book in to see us, so we can start to help you.
With plantar fasciitis you may experience pain coming under the heel bone and into the base of the foot and get a burning pain that can be worse first thing in the morning when you first step onto the foot but can ease with movement. If this has been happening to you and it hasn’t resolved within a month or so it’s worth coming in and seeing if we can get you feeling a lot better using a variety of treatments that we offer at Cram osteopaths. It may be hands-on treatment or shockwave, but we can discuss a treatment plan at your first appointment.
The other thing we see lots of is Morton’s neuroma. Mortons neuroma is usually a buildup of inflammation around a nerve between the toes and can cause a deep burning pain and sometimes a numbness between the toes, usually affecting the third and fourth toe but it can vary. This one usually worsens the more that you put weight on it and can really begin to affect the way you walk and with Morton’s neuroma there’s a variety of treatment options to help.
Sometimes the foot pain is not related directly to the foot, but coming from the spine and the classic one for that would be sciatic pain. When the sciatic nerve is inflamed due to a disc compression or a bony compression, or a muscle spasming over the nerve. What we get is referred sciatic pain that comes down the back of the heel and under the big toe. It can also come over the side of the foot, over the forefoot and into the toes at the front.
So if you’re getting numbness and tingling in your foot and you’re not sure if it’s coming from your back or your foot, the best thing is to get in touch to book an appointment and one of our fabulous osteopaths will soon have you feeling a lot better
Happy National Feet week. Hope they’re not tickly.

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What is an Osteopath?

Hi, it’s Joanna from Cram Osteopaths. We get asked all the time in the clinic, ‘So what actually is an osteopath?’ we get asked all the time outside the clinic as well. It’s probably a slight failing in our profession that we’ve never been able to fully define what an osteopath is in its simplest terms.
Osteopaths are musculoskeletal specialists. We can diagnose and treat musculoskeletal, muscle bone injuries and pain. This can cover everything from neck and back pain to joint pain and it can include a scope of nerve injuries, tendon injuries and disc pain as well. Although the scope is much bigger than that.
With regards to what makes an osteopath different to say a chiropractor or a physiotherapist, I think the most important thing is finding a professional that you trust and you feel comfortable with and you’re getting results with, but really what we like to think at Cram osteopaths is when you come in, we’re looking at the whole person. So although you may have neck pain, there’s probably some other areas that need attention in order to get long term benefits in helping your neck pain recover. It may be that there’s shoulder tension, or actually your lower back could do with some attention or you have a little bit of an upper limb issue that’s been undiagnosed previously.
I probably still haven’t answered that simply as I can. But if your friends ask, ‘you’re seeing an osteopath, what is an osteopath?’ Osteopaths are people that are there to get you out of pain and they’re able to treat the physical problem and they can also help with referrals to other professionals when needed if beyond the scope of osteopathy.
If you’re still not sure, or you just want to know a bit more about what we can offer and what services osteopaths can deliver, especially at Cram osteopaths feel free to comment below get in touch by email or give us a call, and one of us will call you back and we will happily try and give you a bit more advice and explanation as to how osteopathy may be able to help you.

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What is Stenosis?

Hello, it’s Michael Brown from Cram Osteopath in Glasgow, today I want to talk to you about stenosis. If you’ve heard that word before, you might well be suffering from it or you know someone who has it. It’s a very difficult condition to have and it can affect all aspects of your life, not just because of the pain that you get in your lower back, but also in mobility. People can become unsteady on their feet as the nerves are being compressed in the lower part of the back.
Now, stenosis is a complicated subject. Today the one that we’re focusing on is foraminal stenosis or lateral foraminal stenosis, which you can see when someone’s spine has degenerated enough that the disc is thinning and the nerves are getting compressed on either side. Treatment options for something like this can be very limiting in terms of giving the patient relief that they’re looking for, which often is they want to be able to be a bit more steady on their feet and to get rid of the back pain when walking up the street. Hands-on treatment has its limitations with something like stenosis, depending on the actual pain source or what we’re trying to achieve with the patient. One of the pieces of kit that we do have in the practice that can help treat this type of stenosis is IDD therapy.
You may have seen some of our other videos before regarding IDD therapy and if you haven’t, there’ll be a link to our IDD therapy page in this video, please check it out and if it’s something you’re interested in, we’d be delighted to hear from you.

What is IDD Therapy?

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Why do Russian twists hurt my back?

Michael Brown from Cram Osteopaths in Glasgow and today I want to talk about the Russian twist. Recently I’ve seen a few cases where Russian twists have been a contributing factor in a patient’s agony with lower back pain, and this has then caused some trouble and pain all the way down the leg. It really is a sorry sight to see and the patient has my full empathy. So Russian twists are done in a sit up position, and then twisting, repeating this hundreds of times with a load. The reason this can be troublesome is because of the position of your spine and your lower back with inflection and rotation at the same time, you then add in weight and more frequency and then that can equal an osteopath visit. If you’re suffering from back pain or you believe this may be adding to your pain, then I would think about dropping them and replacing them with something else. Speak to your trainer, or if you’re doing home exercises, then I would advise to stop doing russian twists and come and talk to someone in the practice and we can find a better solution for you. Like planks, now, everyone hates planks, no one likes them, but in this position, planks are stable, no twisting and better for your spine and your disks. And I know what you’re thinking, his guy is a top class planker. So until next time.

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How to stay active while working at a desk

Hi, it’s Joanna here from Cram Osteopaths and today we are talking about how to encourage you to get up and move more when you’re working from home or in the office.
One of the big problems we see in the clinic is people that sit all day long and hardly get up and before you know it you’ve spent seven, eight hours sat at the desk, probably not in a good posture and putting a lot of strain on some of the key joints through the spine and also through the hips, pelvis and the thigh muscles. So it’s very important that we move through the day. I do appreciate my job is easy because I’m up and moving all the time whilst some other jobs where a lot of your work is based on a screen, it’s intense and you forget to move. So there’s a couple of tricks I would suggest.
One is using your alarm on the actual desktop and every half hour it gives you a beep or a notice to simply stand up, that means all you have to do is get up and we raise the arms up above the head with a big stretch and back down again. The reason something as simple as that is useful is as getting the arms up overhead increases your cardiac output in your heart. It gives everything a good stretch and when you sit back down, you will refind your neutral posture. So doing that every half hour or so is a really good way of balancing quite an intense period of computer work.
The other thing that I suggest is using your mobile phone. Phones can be a really big distraction when we’re working and you’re trying to get through big documents. What I recommend is you set a timer for about 45 minutes, and we put the phone over the other side of the room or in the kitchen and we just leave it there. The next thing you know, the alarm goes off and because it’s not just there, you can’t just switch off, you have to get up to turn the alarm off. This is the perfect opportunity to take that minute or two as a break, get up, go back over to the phone, switch the alarm off and reset it. At the same time, you can get a small glass of water or go to the toilet or something just to change up your schedule.
So there we have two really easy tips. One is standing up every half hour and reaching above the head and the other one is setting an alarm and leaving the phone in a different room or the other side of the room to encourage you to get up and change what you’re doing before going back to work.
So hopefully that helps, obviously though if you’re struggling and you’re in a lot of pain, come in and see us, let us help you and get you out of pain quickly and start this year of 2022, as you mean to go on, which is positive and without any pain or discomfort.
See you soon.

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How to help Treat Plantar Fasciitis

Hello, it’s Michael from Cram Osteopaths in Glasgow and today I wanted to talk to you about plantar fasciitis and Shockwave therapy. It is a terrible mouthful and a terrible condition to have, heel pain is what you’ll know it as. Waking up in the morning with incredible excruciating pain in the base of the heel, sometimes into that fleshy bit of the Achilles tendon, or underneath the sole of the foot. Usually patients that attend the practice, have tried a series of other treatments first, acupuncture, ice rolling with a Coca-Cola bottle, stretches and boots, some of it works, some of it doesn’t. With shockwave therapy, there is a lot of science behind it, a lot of research that makes it specific and we can calculate what treatment dosage a patient will need, how much pressure we can use and the time frame it’s going to take for recovery. In 80% of these studies going up to 80 plus percent there is a good treatment outcome.
Now it’s not a magic fix. It does take a series of treatments to get it under control and there is only so fast that your body can heal in order to get itself better. With shockwave therapy, the idea behind it is that we push that process along. We help stimulate that process and help these tissues recover in a normal way, rather than the wonky healing mechanism that they’re going through at the moment.
So if you’re suffering from heel pain in the morning, you’ve tried all the orthotics. It’s stopping you from walking, you want to play golf and you can’t, your dog walking’s become terrible and you’re just in a lot of pain and discomfort. We’d be delighted to hear from you to see if this treatment option is something that is suitable for you.

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What is Shockwave Therapy used for?

Hello. It’s Michael from Cram Osteopaths in Glasgow and today I wanted to talk to you all about Shockwave Therapy. It’s a terrible name for this type of treatment because it sounds scary and horrible and it’s not.

With shockwave therapy, we use it in the practice to treat conditions that can be very difficult to shift. Things like plantar fasciitis, chronic tendon injuries, calcific tendinopathy and bursitis, some of these injuries that you may have heard of some that you haven’t, but they’re all troubles that might not respond very well to other treatment methods. Usually you’ve gone through the other treatment options first, and then you arrive at the situation when it is just not shifting, that is where this fabulous piece of kit comes in.

At Cram Osteopaths we have the focus shockwave unit, which there’s not many of these in the country and we also have the radial unit. We have these two fabulous types of technology, that we would be happy to discuss further with you and to discuss the issue that you’re facing to see if this type of treatment is suitable for you.

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Head, shoulders, knees and toes stretches

Hi everyone. Joanna here from Cram Osteopaths. It’s the new year and lots of us are feeling a bit stiff and sore either from inactivity or having started at a new gym. We thought we’d give you something simple that you can work through as a whole body stretch and the song that comes to mind is head, shoulders, knees, and toes. A really quick, simple routine that you can do, so that you’ve pretty much stretched all the key areas of the body.

For the head part, we’re going to stand or sit nice and tall. Imagine with the top of the head that you’re pushing the head up to the ceiling and you’re going to feel that through the back of the neck and also a little bit through the shoulders. Hold it for a few seconds and release, repeat a few times. My favourite shoulder stretch, many of you will see me do this. Squeezing the shoulders up to the earlobes, and back down and also rolling the shoulders backwards. Then we go down to our knees, which are often forgotten about. A really lovely stretch I do with knees involves grabbing a hand towel. You’re going to roll it up into a sausage shape and then while sat down, making sure that your feet are flat on the floor for the start position. Bring the hand towel under the knee and hold either side, turn your toes to the outside and gently pull your heel towards your bottom, repeat about three to five times on both sides. You won’t feel a huge stretch when you do this, but it is a lovely way of stretching through a complicated joint.

The final one is toes, with your toes you’re going to give them a good point straight and then down towards the ground, if you are prone to cramp, it can be a bit strong so don’t do it quite as much. Then resting your leg down and using the big toe as a guide you’re going to draw a figure of eight with your big toe, all your other toes will spread apart and move, you’ll also get a nice stretch through your foot and your ankle. Repeat eight figures of eight on each side. That should get you all sorted, a nice whole body stretch, just sing that song to yourself to remind you of what you’re doing.

I hope that helps everyone and Happy new year.

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How to sit at your desk correctly

 

Hi, Joanna from Cram Osteopaths. We are posting today about posture at work now that everybody is going back to work after the Christmas and new year break. We’re already starting to see people coming in with lots of tension through the neck and the upper back and just slipping back into bad habits with how they sit at their desk.

 

If you are working all day at the computer, ideally you should have a separate keyboard and screen. Your desktop toolbar should be at eye level and if we sit right back into our chair and stretch our arms out, our fingertips should touch the screen. For your chair height, you want to make sure that you are high enough that you have a nice angle slightly downwards from the elbow onto the keyboard. The main thing to be aware of is to use the backrest of your chair. Sit right back into your chair, that’s what it’s there for and then make sure your feet are completely flat on the ground. If your feet cannot touch the ground because your leg length is too short, then put a box underneath your feet, so that they can be flat on the box.  We should have a nice parallel angle or a slight downward angle to the floor with your legs. 

If you start to get tension in the neck and the shoulders after a few hours, we usually recommend trying to get up from the desk every half hour, or even just getting up and stretching the arms above your head just to get the blood flowing.  If after doing that, you’re still feeling lots of tension,  go through some basic moves, shoulder squeezes and rolling the shoulders backwards as well.

What not to do is to keep trying to self pop the neck, that is usually what will end up causing an injury and you’ll need to be in here sooner than what you might like.  Remember to keep loosening off the muscles and joints and making sure your desk set up is as neutral as possible.

If you’re still suffering with pain though, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at Cram Osteopaths. You can give us a call or book online and one of our excellent Osteopaths will have you out of pain very quickly.

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Tips to avoid injury when lifting weights

 

 

Michael from Cram Osteopaths in Glasgow and today I want to talk to you about your new exercise regime. If you’re starting one or just getting into the gym again in the new year.

Over the last few years, people have been completely obsessed with squats and deadlifts, and this is something we often see, or the patient reports that back pain started when they were doing this.

Now definitely get some advice from someone that knows what they’re doing when you’re doing these exercises, but one of the tips I want to give you is always look where you’re lifting from or where you’re pushing too.

So when people are doing deadlifts, there’s a mirror in front of you, and they’re looking at that mirror as you’re going up and down in position. You would never lift a weight and not look at the thing that you’re lifting or pushing, so I would just let your eyes glance down at what you’re doing instead of looking at yourself. Look down at the weight that you’re lifting, and then you go into the deadlift rather than tilting your head to look at yourself, so avoiding putting a lot of stress on your neck. The other one that’s really important when lifting weights above your head, there is no way you would lift weights above your head handing someone something without looking in that direction. You’d look where the weight is going, so again just glance your eyes at what you’re doing and where you’re going.  That will take a lot of stress and strain off your back and try to prevent some of these injuries.

 

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