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Introduction


Light is a fundamental aspect of our daily lives, shaping our environment and affecting our well-being in profound ways. From the glow of the morning sun to the soft dimness of twilight, light plays a pivotal role in regulating our nervous system, circadian clock, and ultimately, our sleep quality. In this blog post, we'll explore the intricate relationship between light and these essential aspects of our health, backed by scientific references.


Light and the Nervous System


The nervous system is the body's intricate communication network, responsible for transmitting signals between the brain and various parts of the body. Light has a significant impact on the nervous system, both positively and negatively.

Positive Effects:

a. Mood Enhancement: Exposure to natural daylight, particularly in the morning, can boost serotonin levels in the brain, enhancing mood and promoting a sense of well-being.

b. Increased Alertness: Bright light, such as sunlight or specific artificial lighting, can improve alertness, cognitive function, and concentration.

Negative Effects:

a. Stress and Anxiety: Overexposure to artificial blue light, especially in the evening, can disrupt the nervous system by increasing stress hormones like cortisol, leading to alertness at the wrong time, restlessness, and potentially anxiety.

b. Disrupted Melatonin Production: Excessive artificial light exposure at night can suppress melatonin production, making it difficult to activate the parasympathetic nervous system and relax.


Light and the Circadian Clock


Our circadian rhythm is an internal biological clock that regulates the timing of various physiological processes, including sleep-wake cycles, body temperature, metabolism, and hormone production. In 2017, Jeffrey C. Hall et al. were even awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine for discovering that light is the most potent external factor that influences our circadian clock.

Positive Effects:

a. Synchronization: Exposure to natural light during the day helps to align our circadian rhythms with the 24-hour day-night cycle, leading to improved sleep and overall health.

b. Alertness and Performance: A well-synchronized circadian clock can enhance alertness and cognitive performance during the daytime.

Negative Effects:

a. Circadian Disruption: Irregular light exposure, particularly from artificial sources at night, can disrupt the circadian rhythm, contributing to sleep disorders, mood disturbances, and health issues.

b. Shift Work Problems: Individuals working night shifts or irregular hours often experience circadian misalignment, which can lead to sleep disturbances and health problems.


Light and Sleep


Sleep is crucial for our physical and mental well-being. Light, or lack thereof, plays a pivotal role in our ability to fall asleep and enjoy restorative slumber.

Positive Effects:

a. Regulated Sleep-Wake Cycles: Exposure to natural light during the day and darkness at night helps regulate our sleep-wake cycles, promoting healthier sleep patterns.

b. Improved Sleep Quality: A well-established circadian rhythm contributes to deeper and more restful sleep.

Negative Effects:

a. Insomnia: Exposure to artificial light, especially blue light from screens, before bedtime can interfere with the production of melatonin, making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.

b. Delayed Sleep Phase: Irregular light exposure, such as late-night screen use, can lead to a delayed sleep phase, making it challenging to wake up early and maintain a consistent sleep schedule

.

Erling Haaland's Secret to Optimal Sleep


World-renowned Manchester City striker Erling Haaland, known for his exceptional skills on the field, attributes part of his success to Ra Optics sunset lenses. Haaland uses these specialized lenses three hours before bedtime to optimize his sleep, calm his nervous system, and support a healthy circadian rhythm. By reducing his exposure to disruptive artificial light, Haaland ensures he gets the rest he needs to perform at his best. Luckily, anyone benefits from this intervention, not just top athletes.




How Ra Optics Helps


In the pursuit of harnessing the positive effects of light while mitigating its potentially detrimental impacts on the nervous system, circadian clock, and sleep, Ra Optics offers a game-changing solution: blue light protection glasses. These specially designed glasses are engineered to filter out the harmful blue light emitted by digital screens and artificial lighting sources, which can disrupt circadian rhythms and hinder melatonin production. By wearing Ra Optics blue light protection glasses, you can create a shield against the disruptive effects of excessive blue light exposure, ensuring that your circadian rhythm stays on track, your nervous system remains balanced, and your sleep quality is optimized. Whether you're a professional athlete like Erling Haaland or an individual seeking to enhance your overall well-being, Ra Optics provides a tool to help you thrive in today's digitally illuminated world.


Make sure to use code MVMT at checkout!




Conclusion


The influence of light on our nervous system, circadian clock, and sleep is undeniable. Understanding how light affects these crucial aspects of our health can empower us to make informed choices about our exposure to light throughout the day.


References

  • Cajochen, C., & Dijk, D. J. (2003). Melatonin and the circadian regulation of sleep–wake timing: physiological and clinical perspectives. Behavioral Brain Research, 125(1-2), 57-74.Vandewalle, G., Schwartz, S., Grandjean, D., Wuillaume, C., Balteau, E., Degueldre, C., ... & Maquet, P. (2010). Spectral quality of light modulates emotional brain responses in humans. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(45), 19549-19554.

  • 2017 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, Jeffrey C. Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael W. Young

  • Roenneberg, T., & Merrow, M. (2007). Entrainment of the human circadian clock. Cold Spring Harbor Symposia on Quantitative Biology, 72, 293-299.

  • Wright, K. P., & Czeisler, C. A. (2002). Absence of circadian phase resetting in response to bright light behind the knees. Science, 297(5581), 571-573.

  • Brainard, G. C., Hanifin, J. P., Greeson, J. M., Byrne, B., Glickman, G., Gerner, E., & Rollag, M. D. (2001). Action spectrum for melatonin regulation in humans: evidence for a novel circadian photoreceptor. Journal of Neuroscience, 21(16), 6405-6412.

  • Khalsa, S. B., Jewett, M. E., Cajochen, C., & Czeisler, C. A. (2003). A phase response curve to single bright light pulses in human subjects. Journal of Physiology, 549(3), 945-952.

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Headaches are a serious issue for those who get them often. Even if they don’t come on strong, they tend to wind up there. The irony is that we can actually accentuate mild headaches when we stress about them, giving them more power and control over our day.


Chiropractic care has been proven effective for mitigating your headache pain. Chiropractors believe in finding the root cause of pain, not just covering it up. Once a full body analysis is achieved, services can be provided to fix the injury, promoting less frequent and less aggressive headaches.



Let’s dive into:


  • Who gets headaches?

  • What are the different kinds of headaches?

  • Why we experience headaches?

  • How to manage your headaches with chiropractic solutions

  • And more...


Who Gets Headaches?


Headaches happen for various reasons, making anyone susceptible to them. Some headaches are due to an event, like lack of sleep or drinking too much alcohol in one sitting, but others are chronic, meaning they happen often and for seemingly no reason.


Chiropractic care can help all kinds of people who suffer from headaches, including:

  • Athletes

  • Those who were in an auto accident

  • Those with injuries to the spine

  • Sedentary lifestyles

  • Those who work for extended periods at the computer daily

  • Those of all ages

  • Those with high levels of anxiety or worry

  • Those who need lifestyle adjustments

  • And many others


different Kind of Headaches


There are four kinds of primary headaches, which are headaches due to sensitivities; a medical condition does not cause them.


Migraine headaches


Much more painful and debilitating than some other headaches, migraines cause throbbing pain and can make getting out of bed exceptionally challenging. They are generally triggered by events such as movement, light, and sound.


Symptoms include:

  • Severe pain in the head and neck

  • Fatigue

  • Visual disruptions or temporary vision loss

  • Nausea

  • Vertigo

  • Irritability

  • And others


Tension headaches


Tension headaches are generally less painful than migraines and often brought on by mental or emotional stress or prolonged periods of inactivity. Other common reasons include lack of sleep or straining the eyes.


Symptoms include:

  • Consistent pain

  • Dull, aching pain

  • Mild discomfort in and around both sides of the head

  • Tightness or pressure across the forehead

  • Tenderness in the scalp, neck, and shoulder muscles

  • And others


Cluster headaches


Some consider cluster headaches to be the worst. They are very aggressive and can last weeks or even months. Their name is due to their occurrence. Most last for up to 45 minutes and happen up to eight times in one day. Typical triggers are seasonal changes and alcohol or tobacco use.


Symptoms include:

  • Burning pain

  • Pain behind one eye that can radiate to the forehead, nose, and gums

  • Inability to rest easy or sit still

  • Congestion

  • Watery eye on the affected side

  • Sweating

  • And others


New Daily Consistent Headaches (NDCH)


When patients complain of new daily headaches, it can be due to medication overuse or an injury to the head, spine, or neck, as well as other lifestyle choices and conditions.


Symptoms include:

  • Long-lasting and constant pain

  • Moderate to intense pain

  • Pain on both sides of the head

  • Pressure or tightening in or around the head

  • Pain is stagnant (doesn’t worsen during the cycle)

  • And others


Why Most of Us Get Headaches


More often than not, your headaches are caused by your lifestyle choices and sensitivities. The good news about this is that some of these are modifiable, and with the right support, you can find relief.


Common reasons for headaches include:

  • Insomnia or lack of sleep

  • Alcohol use (often red wine)

  • Dehydration

  • Processed food

  • Nicotine

  • Stress

  • Certain prolonged postures

  • Lack of nutrients or food intake

  • Lack of physical activity

  • Too much physical activity (overtraining)

  • Improperly treated or unhealed injuries, such as whiplash

  • Too much time focused on a device

  • Environmental factors: season change or light, smell, and sound sensitivities


Chiropractic Solutions to End Your Headaches


Chiropractic care has been shown to end headache pain for many, and, with regular services, may be able to prevent them altogether. Combining in-office treatments with insight and guidance on important lifestyle changes, chiropractic is an excellent resource for those who want a non-invasive, natural way to end their headaches.


Chiropractors have significant knowledge of the spine and the soft tissues of the neck and back. They utilize methods that restore balance and alignment and reduce pressure on restricted nerves and soft tissues, alleviating your headaches quickly.


Our team has the experience and tools to perform:

  • Chiropractic adjustments- a highly controlled and targeted manual thrust to the affected joint of the spine to ensure alignment through the back and into the neck

  • Y-Strap adjustments- using a specially designed tool, we are able to generate decompression in the spinal discs and take pressure off of the suboccipital nerves, which often contribute to headaches

  • Soft tissue therapies- varied techniques that heal injured soft tissues, relieving pressure and allowing the body to function properly

  • Education regarding lifestyle and how to improve upon it to lessen your headaches

  • And others


Visit a Chiropractor and End Your Headaches


Our Reno chiropractic clinic has what it takes to help end your headaches. We’ve seen firsthand how our safe, natural solutions can decrease your headache frequency and severity. If you’re ready to start living life to the fullest every day, contact us; and let’s do it.








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This is a quick post about my current thoughts on low back pain episodes and is meant for the non-clinician. I have the right to change my mind at any time. 😉 It’s important to note that this discussion is not related to chronic, persisting low back pain.


Despite the benign nature of most back pain episodes, spine pain of any kind can be quite unsettling. A large part of this has to do with societal influence, childhood upbringing, and inaccurate information from providers.


We, as a society, are over-medicalizing low back pain. The majority of us will experience low back pain at some point in our life and 90 plus percent of cases are not medically serious; despite being seriously painful.


This is why I think it’s very important to find a provider that you not only can trust to provide you with accurate and updated information, but who will also take the time to listen and be empathetic to your current situation.


We know that most bouts of low back pain will improve significantly within 2-6 weeks. Some individuals get tremendous relief from Chiropractic Adjustments, others not so much. Some people do well with “specific” exercise recommendations, others do quite well with general advice to remain active. Or in other words, “keep calm and carry on.”


It is my personal belief that many providers are over treating low back pain and some of us are actually under treating. In the past, I have been guilty of doing both, which has come from a lack of fully understanding the patient in front of me. The patient tells us what they need. It is our job as providers to pick up on that and guide you appropriately.


Some of you may do better with consistent check-ins over a period of time, especially if this is your first time experiencing this type of pain. This can give you confidence and reassurance to know that you’re on the right track or you may really enjoy the hands on manual therapy, Chiropractic Adjustments, etc. In my eyes, there is nothing wrong with consistent Chiropractic Adjustments as long as the narrative behind them has your best interest in mind.


Others may prefer a one off appointment or the option to schedule a follow up if something doesn’t seem quite right during the recovery process. Now that you’ve had an exam and know that nothing serious is taking place, you feel at ease getting on with your everyday life and letting time do its thing.


In the words of the late great Louis Gifford, “Effective reassurance is a bloody good pain killer.”


Until next time…


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