You may be walking around with an unstable foundation in your hips, even though you may not realize it.
This can lead to pain in various parts of the body, whether in the hips themselves, the lower back, the neck, or the knees.
It’s important to keep in mind that the hips are the foundation for the skeletal structure. Stabilizing the hips is the key to stabilizing the whole body and the Sacroiliac Support Belt helps in this.
How the nervous system is involved
As a Lakewood, OH holistic chiropractor, I want to share with you how your nervous system can be involved in hip pain and other types of chronic pain.
As I discuss in my new book coming out in the Fall of 2020, stress over the long term can cause your nervous system to get stuck in a state of fight or flight. This survival mode helped our ancestors outrun the proverbial tiger but today, we tend to spend too much time in this heightened state in which our bodies are working hard to activate muscles to escape a situation or fight off real or imagined danger.
Ideally, we would get the burst of energy we need to survive and then move into a restful state in which the body dedicates time, effort, and energy to rebuild, digest, and maintain health. When we are in a restful state, our bodies can focus on healing and on keeping up the maximal structural elastic potential of the ligaments.
The role of a sacroiliac support belt
This is where a sacroiliac support belt comes in.
You wear it low on the hips for gentle, firm support and it does the following:
- Allows the body to feel stabilized on a strong foundation
- Naturally calms the nervous system
It’s interesting to note that the sacroiliac belt helps the body stabilize externally as well as working on a deeper level to stabilize the nervous system.
Once there is a general sense of calm from this stable foundation, the body is less inclined to tighten and fire up muscles, whether in the hips, lower back, neck or other areas where people hold tension. The body can return to maintaining balance and order.
How to wear a sacroiliac support belt
To wear the belt, first, place it low on your hips or about two finger widths below where a normal trouser belt goes. This is the position that will stabilize the spine.
Wrap the belt around this low hip area and stick it together. Then, you can adjust on each side by lifting and tightening additional strips on the right and left.
Don’t wear this belt too tightly; just make sure it feels snug. Snugness transmits signals of calm to your nervous system.
Wear this belt for about eight hours each day, for three months.
Why three months? Most people don’t realize that when the nervous system registers pain in the body, the problem has been there for a long time.
The nervous system is about balance and maintaining balance no matter what. Many assaults happen to the nervous system, and it shifts priorities and assignments in order to maintain a good dynamic balance as possible. Structurally, this usually takes a form of muscle tightness.
However, sometime sooner or later, the body progressively maintains this tightness in multiple body muscles to the point where it becomes uncomfortable.
At first, people think they are just getting older and that stiffness is usual and expected for their advancing age.
Later, that tightness will manifest as a muscle pull during athletic activities or for non-athletes, it takes the form of tightness waking up from bed, sitting up from a chair, or pain initiated from bending over to pick something up, whether a heavy object or maybe even the morning newspaper.
The point is that once pain manifests, the body has already compensated in multiple ways, and it just reached a point where it could no longer compensate, and your nerves have reached passed a neurological point where you now experience pain from the chronic tightening of muscles.
What to expect
As you wear the belt, the nervous system will be allowed to set into motion true healing through dynamic rebalancing.
The nervous system will first seek to rebalance the weakest link in the chain. In the case of severe back pain, shoulder pain, or knee pain, it focuses on strengthening the ligaments.
Usually, after two weeks, the ligaments have become strong enough to where you do not experience the original pain. Do not let this fool you. From experience, the nervous system has tightened the ligaments to about 70 percent capacity. At this point, it is strong enough to not trigger the signal of pain in that area, but it’s not 100 percent strong and elastic.
The system has now shifted priorities to other areas of imbalance and weakness. Maintaining the belt for the full three months will allow the nervous system to more completely re-balance. Usually, by the beginning of the second month, the nervous system will be able to shift back and significantly tighten the sacroiliac joint, which is your foundation.
5 rules for best results
For best results, here are some rules to observe while wearing the belt:
- Maintain your blood sugar levels. Be sure not to skip any meals.
- Keep your hips as stable as possible. That means avoid crossing your legs. Try to cross at the feet instead. Your body will start to shift your pelvis back into proper balance naturally with the support of the belt.
- If you have a good chiropractor, visit him or her about a week after wearing the belt. By that time, there should be enough stability within the pelvis so that a chiropractic pelvic adjustment will not throw your body/pelvis too far out of balance.
- If you sleep on your side, place a pillow between your legs.
- Give yourself a break from doing open leg lunge exercises or yoga hip openers for one to two weeks.
The sacroiliac belt is a simple but clever device to help your body heal from chronic pain. I often suggest it along with other supportive mineral supplements to help my patients.