Brain and Spine Center: The Best Ways and Tips to Keep Your Brain and Spine Healthy
Structure of The Brain
The cerebrum is the uppermost portion of the brain. It is also the largest part of the brain, covering about 2/3rd of the whole brain mass. And it is divided into two main hemispheres.
Now, the outer layer of the cerebrum is called the cerebral cortex. Interestingly, it is only about 1/10th of an inch thick. However, even though it is really small, this is where much of our human thoughts, planning, perception, and consciousness take place.
The Frontal Lobe
In the front of the brain, makes up about 1/3rd of the area of the cerebral cortex. It is best known for its role in attention, working memory, impulse control, being creative, and also abstract reasoning and thinking. This is what really makes us human.
Because it is the youngest part of our brain, children and teenagers can act more impulsively than adults. Their frontal lobes aren’t fully developed. It isn’t around until 20years old or so, before the frontal lobe is fully developed.
One important area of the frontal lobe is the primary motor cortex. This is in this area of the frontal lobe. It is pretty cool how this was discovered.
A German psychologist in the 1860s noticed that when he was caring for injured soldiers, he would touch the surface of this area of the brain. And he found that a soldier’s body would actually twitch on the opposite side. So, say he touched the right side. The left side of the soldier’s body would twitch.
From this and other research, we now know that different parts of the cortex are responsible for different functions. All of the parts of our body that we can move have a dedicated region of the motor cortex that is activated when we move our body parts.
For example, we have a region for our fingers, one for our wrists, one for our lips, and one for our legs and more.
You get the picture?.
Now let us take a look at the anatomy of the spinal cord.
Anatomy of The Spinal Cord And How It Works
The spinal cord is a very important part of our central nervous system (CNS), the overall system that controls and coordinates the activities of our bodies.
Our brain is surrounded by the skull while our spinal cord is surrounded by rings of bone called vertebrae and both are covered by protective membrane together, the vertebrae in the membrane make up our backbones.
The backbone which protects our spinal cord starts at the base of our skull and ends just above our hips. The spinal cord is about 18 inches long and extends from the base of the brain down to the middle of the back to just below the last rib in the waist area.
The main job of the spinal cord is to be the communication system between the brain and the body by carrying messages that allow us to move and feel sensation. Our spinal nerve cells called “neurons” carry the messages to and from the spinal cord. These messages leave the spinal cord through openings in the vertebrae.
Spinal nerve roots branch off the spinal cord in pairs, one going to each side of the body. Each nerve has a specific job for movement and feeling. They tell the muscles in your arms, fingers, legs, toes, chest and other parts of your body when and how to move.
When a spinal cord injury occurs, sensation and movement may be interrupted resulting in a temporary or permanent loss of function and paralysis in general. The higher the injury occurs the greater loss of function the person may experience.
The vertebrae are grouped into sections according to their location, the seventh vertebrae in the neck is called cervical vertebrae.
The vertebrae are numbered top to bottom from the head to tailbone, the top vertebra is called C1, next is C2, C3 and so on. Cervical spinal cord injuries usually causes loss of function in the arms and legs resulting in quadriplegia.
The next 12 vertebrae are called the thoracic vertebrae. The first T1 is where the top rivets injuries in the thoracic region usually affecting the trunk and legs which results in paraplegia.
The lumbar vertebrae are the five vertebrae in the lower back between the thoracic vertebrae, where the ribs attach, and the pelvis
The sacral vertebrae run from the pelvis to the end of the spinal column injuries to the five lumbar vertebrae L1 through L5, and similarly to the five sacral vertebrae S1 through S4 generally results in some loss of functioning in the hips and legs whether the cause of a spinal injury is traumatic or non-traumatic.
The damage affects the nerve fibers passing through the injured area that can damage a part of the corresponding muscles and nerves below the injury site.
Brain And Spine Center: Tips To Keep The Brain And Spine Healthy
Now that you know about the brain and spinal cord, here are some tips and best ways to keep them healthy.
1. Get Enough Sleep
There are many ways you can improve the quality of your sleep. These vary between individuals. The best way to find out what works for you is to try each solution, track the results and move on until you can confidently settle for the tips that work best for you.
Here are very basic and simple things you can try:
- Sleep in a pitch black room
- Set your alarm clock to the same waking hour every day of the week including weekends, the point is to train your brain to wake up at the same hour
- Go to bed only when you’re tired
- Do not drink alcohol, this will impair the quality of your sleep
- Test your sleep cycles. 1hr:30min is the average time for the human body to complete a cycle, so yours might differ
- Have a morning routine set up
- Do not expose yourself to the intensity of your screen luminosity at night
2. Sitting Posture
Since childhood, grown ups always told us: “sit up straight”. Whether it is in class or at the dinner table, kids seem to never want to use a chair like they’re supposed to.
If you’re still a little kid inside, chances are you still have trouble staying still on your chair, and always end up in sitting positions that an outside observer won’t even understand how you got into in the first place.
Risks Of Bad Sitting Position
These positions might be fun for a little while, but with time they can create a lot of tension and pain.
These are the main postures you should watch out from:
- Unleveled position – Sitting in an unleveled sitting position, results in an asymmetrical load on the joints. It will also strain your knee ligaments and expose your knee, thigh, and lower back to injuries at a higher risk.
- Slouching – Sitting slouched especially for prolong hours, leaves your lower back unsupported and wears down your lumber curve. These two ergo-hazards may lead to lower back pains.
- Over extended neck – If your screen is positioned too high, it could cause your neck to be overly extended in order for you to be able to look at it. This will put your cervical vertebrae at stress and could lead to severe neck pain, headaches, and injuries
- Over flexed neck – Working for long hours with a laptop, a tablet, or spending too much time with your smartphone, may lead to an over-stressed neck and cause pain.
- Over reaching – If you are over reaching to your computer, you are exposing your wrists and elbows to inflammation and pain. This is because this position causes your wrists to be in an unnatural position, making them have to work harder and tense up. Overreaching usually comes hand in hand with a hunched back, meaning you are bound to face straining in the shoulders and upper back.
- Hunched Back – When sitting hunched over at a desk for very long you are exposing yourself to hyper kyphosis, which is an abnormally excessive convex curvature of the spine. While everyone’s back tends to become hunched when aging, incorrect sitting positions can really speed up this process. A more immediate effect of hunched back is upper back pain and neck pain. This happens because you are sitting in a position that isn’t natural to your body, forcing your neck to extend and putting too much pressure on the upper back and neck.
- Elevated Shoulders – It is important to keep the correct ratio between you, your desk, and your chair. Adjusting should be done according to the position of your shoulders, not your feet. You want your shoulders to feel loose and comfortable, with no tension. Working with elevated shoulders may lead to upper back, shoulder, and neck pains.
Ways To Improve Your Posture:
- Walk faster
- Practice yoga
- Do weight exercise like dead lifts, squats, plank..etc
- Lose the bad shoes – Wear heels sparingly. The best everyday shoes have arch support, wide toe boxes and not more than one-inch heels.
- Adjustable desk chair with footrest – A highly adjustable desk chair with a footrest maximizes the ability to design a sitting space that reduces spinal pressure, resulting in good posture and relief from neck and back stiffness. Elevating your feet while seated by placing them on a footrest or stack of phone books helps to shift the center of gravity backward and improve posture
- Take ballet classes – Everything in ballet requires good posture. In time, the posture utilized in the dance translates to every part of a dancer’s life.
3. Exercise Your Body
Exercise offers incredible benefits that can improve nearly every aspect of your health from the inside out. Regular physical activity can increase the production of hormones that make you feel happier and sleep better. It can also help you lose weight, manage blood sugar and insulin levels.
4. Practice Yoga
Man is a physical, mental and spiritual being; yoga helps promote a balanced development of all the three. Other forms of physical exercises, like aerobics, assure only physical well-being.
Why Practice Yoga?
Yoga exercises recharges the body and facilitates attainment of perfect equilibrium and harmony.
- Promotes self-healing
- Removes negative blocks from the mind and toxins from the body
- Enhances personal power
- Increases self-awareness
- Helps in attention, focus and concentration, especially important for children
- Reduces stress and tension in the physical body by activating the parasympathetic nervous system
- The aspirant feels rejuvenated and energized
Benefits of Yoga
- All-round fitness
- Weight loss
- Stress relief
- Inner peace
- Improved immunity
- Living with greater awareness
- Better relationships
- Increases energy
- Improves flexibility and posture
- Better intuition
5. Overcome Stress
Stress is a common experience for most people. In fact, 60%–70% of adults living in the united states say they feel stress everyday. There are great ways to relieve stressful situations.
6. Proper Dieting
Eat foods such as crabs, prawns, and lobsters. They contain rich nutrients like protein, calcium, zinc and magnesium, they help maintain a healthy brain and spine. Nutritional supplements also facilitates brain and improves cognitive function.
These drinks and supplements will help:
- Arctic Sea – Supplement can support brain functions such as memory, cognitive function and the nervous system. The body’s nerves are protected by membranes consisting of essential fats like DHA. It now delivers 33% more DHA and also strikes a perfect balance of DHA and EPA fatty acids.
- Forever Freedom – Is a base of aloe vera gel combined with glucosamine sulfate , chondroitin sulfate and MSM (methyl sulfonyl methane), as well as Vitamin C . It has been specifically designed to help your joints, bones and cartilage to relieve symptoms of joint discomfort and prevent recurrence.
- Forever Calcium – It delivers clinically proven quantities of calcium and vitamin D to help you maintain proper bone health.
Products with item code: Forever Freedom (#196), Forever Calcium (#206), Arctic Sea (#376).
The brain and spine should always be kept healthy. Avoid bad posture, and exercise your body frequently to increase joint flexibility. Sleeping also relaxes the brain and enables it to function properly through out the day. Also, stop indulging in negative activities that puts stress on the brain and eat good food that has lots of omega-3 oils.