- Hey everyone, this is Dr.
Philip Cordova with COREChiropractic talking to you from Facebook Live again.
I got a great question today from a patient.
He wanted to know are inversion tables worth the money?And so I thought that was a better question thando they work, or is that something you should do,or is there any benefit to it because there's definitelya benefit to using an inversion table.
So if you haven't tried one or you're not surewhat I'm talking about, it's basically this platform typeof table that you're going to lay on, hook your feet in,and then hang upside down.
Now I myself do use an inversion table, and I have onethat instead of just being like this or like this,what I like is that it gives me some gradience, right,I don't have to go all the way upside down in orderto notice a difference.
I also do have some patients that use boots andthen completely hook into the doorway and hang upside down.
Now I would not trust anything that I have installedthat way to hang upside down from.
I'm weighing about--Hey alright, there you go.
I'm weighing about 220, I'm not going to hook somethingup to the doorway and then try to hang upside downand hope that it holds me upbecause that's often not going to work for me.
But the idea is that it's going to gently pulland traction that spine and open up joint spaces,help the discs, help the blood flow, and then that wayit can be very effective.
Now a couple of the issues that are one if you get onewhere you're hooking your feet in, it's going to pullyour ankle, then it's going to pull your knee, thenit's going to pull your hip before it ever really getsto your spine.
And so if you get one where you hook your knees inthen there's less of that, right, it's not goingto pull your ankle and your knee, it's going to startreally with the hip and then that low back.
So the idea would be to have something that hopefullywould pull you at your knees, that may not necessarily bean option for you, but realize that it's going to takea little bit for it to get to that low back andwhere it's going to make any difference at all.
You can lay on these for five minutes, ten minutes,fifteen minutes, and what you should feel is that gentlepulling and gentle tractioning that helps open upthat joint space.
Now you can also lay down with an ice pack on it.
If you lay with an ice pack you're going to helpcalm down any inflammation that might start to occur,and as it starts to gently pull, it's not going to startaggravating it and causing more problems.
Now what I really think you're paying for though witha lot of these inversion tables is not, does it work,it's not like is this something that is a benefit,because it is a benefit, but what you're often payingfor with a different price difference is how easy it isto get back up again.
So that may sound, what I can get back up, that's nota problem, but what I've seen is the cheaper the table,the harder it is to get back up again because on my tableit slides a bit and pulls like this then I press a button,and then it releases it and I start to come back up,much easier.
Now the alternative are the ones that go upside downlike this and now you're using your abs to hike yourselfback up again, and I did have a patient who got stuckupside down for about an hour before his family found him,and they still give him a hard time about that.
So it was one of those things where yes, he got benefit,but he probably didn't need to be there for an hour,and he certainly didn't need all of the grief thathis family gave him from being able to get back up again.
But what happened is he went upside down, he startedto get himself back up again, he couldn't get back up,and eventually he fatigued and just had nothing leftto try to get himself back up again.
The same thing goes with those boots.
You're hooking your boots up into these hooks upsidedown, and then what happens is you need a lot of corestrength to be able to get yourself back up there again,and you have to be able to hold yourself to get yourselfin position period to even get back up there.
So if you can go completely inverted, great, andI'm not sure of the cost of that, but most of theinversion tables are $200-300 that are the ones that aregoing to require some ab strength to get you back up again.
So if you want to go on the cheaper side with it,just realize that you're probably going to want to makesure someone's home, or you're going to want to make sureyou have some core ab strength to be able to get yourselfback up again.
Now the table that I bought was in the $700-900 range,and I bought it because it does let you go back up againand other family members were going to be using it,and specifically family members that I knew would reallyhave a hard time to get themselves back up all the way.
So there is benefit to it, they have enjoyed it, it's reallyup to you to decide if it's worth the $300 or $700-900price range for you.
And also you can try some lower level traction thingsat home, one real easy thing to do is to lay downon the floor with your butt all the way upagainst the couch, your legs up on the couch,and put a small hand towel, roll that up,and stick that in your lower back.
And with your butt all the way up against the couchlike that and some support underneath your spine,there will be a gentle tractioning that starts to happen.
Now it's not going to be the same as hanging upside downagain, but it will give you an idea of whether or notinversion or that pulling is going to be helpful for you.
So let's say you get on the floor, you put your legsup there on the couch, and you start laying there fora few minutes and you start to notice, oh no,this is terrible, this doesn't feel good at all,then I just saved you a couple hundred bucks andyou're not going to do it.
If on the other hand you get up there and do thatand you start to notice a benefit, but it's just not enoughwhere it feels like it needs to pull more, now isthe time to go ahead and look at an inversion tableto add to your adjustments to help add more blood flowin between those discs.
Now I have noticed that it does not seem to help a wholelot for the mid-back or the neck.
I also know that as you're pulling that spine and thevertebrae start to work their way up their spine,any joint that's stuck or any joint that's misalignedis probably going to be the stopping point of that traction.
So let's say you're at the lower back and it's pullinggreat, great, great, but by the time it gets to thatmid-back everything is locked up, it can't pull throughthat, it's not going to be able to help that mid-back.
So right now I see it primarily as a lower back benefit,maybe some hip and pelvis area.
You can hang upside down and reach more and try to getit to pull more, you could grab onto something orhold a couple of hand weights and try to get moreof a pull from the other direction, but the benefitreally is going to be in that lower back range.
So when I initially got mine I definitely felt likethere was some jamming in there and saw a benefitto getting some traction in there and that's why I did that.
So you can get some of the easier ways of doing it,like that home version I talked about.
If you have decided that you would like to get aninversion table, feel free to discuss it with anyof our doctors here, we're going to certainlypoint you in the right direction, if that's somethingthat you think would be a benefit for you.
And since we do know your health history and do knowyour spine there are going to be some patientswho just aren't going to do well with it and we wantto be able to talk with you about that.
And we do work with Relax the Back, which is very closeto our office, and they've been kind enough to give ussome coupons which are worth 25% off your first purchasethere, so certainly hit us up for that too.
We've got a bunch of them and we keep them on hand if you'relooking for pillows, back supports or inversion tables.
It's a great store, they've certainly got a lot of goodproducts, it's not always the cheapest store so it'sworth it to have the coupon there to help out.
But I do like their store, they're very customerservice focused and everything is of high quality thereso it's something to think about if you decide youwant to get one.
So I look forward to hearing your comments on this.
If you've had an inversion table, if you've decidedthat you wanted one or you're thinking about getting one,or you had one and you hated it, feel free to leavea comment and let me know.
If you have any topics that you really would likecovered in one of our Facebook Lives feel freeto let me know.
We're always looking for ideas, and we want to answerthe questions that you want answers to, so this isDr.
Philip Cordova, I will see you next week.