Thank you for writing to JustAnswer Health. I apologize for your wait - I assume there were few experts available at that time.
Stiffness and achiness. This can in deed be in part from anxiety. One unconciously tenses the muscles and they become sore and stiff after awhile. Just stop and take a look at your posture when you are scared. Your shoulders go up, your breathing gets shallow, muscles tense. Another factor includes staying in one position rather than another for a long period - something quite easy to do and that we all do. We develop shortened hamstrings from sitting in a chair; we develop uneven shoulders from talking on a phone; may strain are back and neck from leaning to look at the computer. For these kinds of things a stretching program can be very helpful.
You mention you do stretching That is great. You may want to look at how thorough the stretching that you are doing is. A very well known stretcing program is yoga. One thing about yoga is that there are series of exercises called vinyasa's that are made to cover most of the major muscle groups. This helps assure that you do not miss any particular area. Yoga can be helpful for all kinds of muscle and joint aches and pains because it can be tailored to specific needs. Another component of yoga that makes it so helpful is the breathing technique that occurs with the stretches - exhalation with release of muscle, inhalation as the muscles are shortened or used. The oxygen from the deep inhalation helps to relax the muscles just at the right time, and increases the stretch.
You also asked about magnesium. In fact, a good supplement for relaxation of muscles and nerves is calcium with magnesium. Taking 600 mg calcium with 200 magnesium or near to this ratio can help release some muscle tension and can help with relaxation and even sleep. It won't undo years of muscle shortening from sitting in a chair or pain in the back due to weakness. But it will help. You really must do some kind of stretching and strengthening program in order to keep the muscles and joints functioning optimumly. The back especially needs careful strengthening in order to remain strong and to prevent compression of the disc which will occur over time if the muscles do not help to keep them separated.
Do you know why one side in particular would hurt the most? My left side from shoulder down to my hamstring hurts horribly on and off. I do carry my son on that side, and that is also the side my TMJ is on. Could that be the reason?
Would chiropractic help? I'm going to the chiropractor on my lunch hour. I will definitely try the yoga. Thanks for the suggestion. I have been in constant pain since my son was 6-8 weeks old. He is now 5 1/2 months, and I just want to feel better. I will try anything. Thanks for your help.
You are welcome!
Yes, it could very well be that one side hurts more than the other if you are carrying your son only on one side. Even though you may do this because you are left or right handed, you might want to try carrying him on the other side some times to balance out the stress. Also, ask the chiropractor if he/she has suggestions on how you should carry him that will be less straining on your body.
Yes, chiropractors can be very good for the type of problem you are describing. They can help get you back in alighnment, but yoga will be helpful as well and will help you keep in alignment.
Some medical trained people do not trust chiropractors, including some that work at JustAnswer. I believe that this is due to misconceptions as well as the chiropractors who have gone to a less than desire schools in the past. I believe the liscensing is stricter now for chiropractors and they are basing their technique that has been validated by research. Just like any health care practitioner, you can always look them up at the Better Business Bureau or at the state licensing board if you had any concerns. There are MD's with cases of malpractice filed against them just as with some chiropractors.
TMJ is most of the time related to stress and tension. Likely the yoga will help you with this as well.
Some medical trained people do not trust chiropractors, including some that work at JustAnswer. I believe that this is due to misconceptions as well as the chiropractors who have gone to a less than desire schools in the past. I believe the liscensing is stricter now for chiropractors. Just like any health care practitioner, you can always look them up at the Better Business Bureau or at the state licensing board if you had any concerns. There are MD's with cases of malpractice filed against them just as with some chiropractors.
Yes I do have some. You may enjoy doing a class at some point - I think that is the best way to learn initially because the instructor can show you certain individual poses that are specific to your problems.
These are websites I have looked up before for individuals. For now focus on "beginner's exercsises" Sometimes they may show more complicated poses or poses that should not be done by a beginner. Don't try to do anything you cannot do. The point of yoga is to relax into the pose. Over time you will be able to go deeper into the stretches - never force the muscles to do anything they do not want to do, they open up with time.
VIDEO - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PB280-6ZJV8
After going to the chiropractor it is a very important thing to place ice on the area's that were adjusted. This will help them not to become swollen and to stay in place (according to a chiropractor I have seen, and this does make sense.) Be extra careful today to stay in alignment. Put your son in the stroller today.
No I don't have any medications to recommend, but the ice should help. A doctor might prescribe you a muscle relaxer, but that has side effects of drowsiness, and won't help you in the long run.
After you have used the ice and feel a little better, please look at this page.
http://www.helpguide.org/mental/stress_relief_meditation_yoga_relaxation.htm (this is actually my favorite website - moreso than the other ones I gave you above)
It gives instructions on how to relax. For today just focus a little further down on the page where it gives instructions on how to deep breath. Then practice this. It starts off having you practice this while sitting, but after awhile you can do it while laying down, if you are tired. Lay on your back though, and try to have your spine straight and your body in alignment. Try the deep breathing in this position. This is really a great thing to do before starting on the yoga. When you do start the yoga, you may just want to do some really simple things like lifting one arm up as you are laying down as high as possible, possible above your head on the floor (keep good alignment) Practice inhaling slowly as you lift the arm, and exhaling slowly as you bring it back down to your side. You can switch between both arms, and then do them together. You can do this with your legs to a lesser degree of height. You should not stress yourself or push beyond what is easy for you at this point. Focus on the movements with the breathing. Keep your lower back on the floor.