Several years ago, I was told I had an abnormal Cervical Lordosis. Sounds like a female problem doesn't it?
Well, actually we all have Cervical Lordosis(es?)
The Cervical spine has a naturally C shaped curve. This curve is medically referred to as Cervical Lordosis. This curvature helps to stabilize both the head and spine and maintains balance.
Sometimes that curve becomes deeper, making the head appear to be leaning forward. This has been referred to as an abnormal Cervical Lordosis, or loss of normal curvature of the cervical spine.
Before becoming a massage therapist, I spent about 10 years leaning over a computer, working as a medical insurance biller, and I was darn good at it!
But I digress.
Shortly after I started my career as a Massage therapist, I had been rear-ended twice, in the span of three months! I began to have some neck and shoulder pain with headaches, and told by a chiropractor friend of mine that I had abnormal Cervical Lordosis.
It's pretty common, given the fact that we all are sitting in front of computers a lot of the time. For example right now here I am (a reminder for me to sit up straight). Everything we do is in front of us. If your head is hanging forward and your work is in front of you (duh!), if you aren't feeling the pain yet, you will soon!
There are several causes of Abnormal Cervical Lordosis.
a) Most cases can be attributed to not maintaining good posture. (Momma was right to smack you in the back and yell at you to sit up straight!)
b) Traumatic injury to the neck
One approach to alleviating my discomfort and hopefully improving my neck's curvature was in using specific pillows at bedtime.
I began using a Cervical pillow. This pillow has been a godsend to me. I will not travel with out my cervical pillow and my mother in law keeps one at her home for me when we visit. They have really helped with the neck pain I was waking up with. I also use a body pillow, regardless how crabby my husband gets because "it takes up too much space". Since I'm a side sleeper (and yes the cervical pillow will help side sleepers as well) I use the body pillow to keep the pressure off of my shoulders and hips, and keep everything aligned.
Unfortunately, on this last trip, I didn't take my body pillow with me. Believe me when I tell you that it made a HUGE impact on my sleeping, and my neck pain. Without that body pillow, my shoulder leaned forward, putting more pressure on my neck and in a sense, turning my head more than it should, while side sleeping. I didn't figure this out until my last overnight stay before coming home! What can I say, my brain was on vacation as well. Lol. At any rate, if you've jumped on the cervical and body pillow bandwagon, tell me what you think?
Is it all in my head? Pun intended.
In a nutshell, I'm gonna need a bigger suitcase! I'm taking BOTH my pillows next time.
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Thanks for reading and see ya on the flip side,
Ellen Rivera Catalan, LMT, ABBT
"The Barefoot Contessa of Ashiatsu" Massage in Cape Coral.