Ribs may be the most useful bones we have in our body. They provide protection to vital organs like our heart, lungs, and liver. Ribs provide the scaffolding for many muscles that aid in breathing, standing, and supporting our spines. On average we take over 23,000 breaths a day. That’s if you didn’t get your workout in for the day. Ribs move quite a bit with every breath you take.
Every breath you take inflates your lungs expanding your ribs and every exhale relaxes the muscles and allows the ribs to compress the air out. The intercostal muscles or the muscles in-between each rib contract on inhalation to raise the rib cage then relax to lower the rib cage. The ribs work in unison with your diaphragm a large dome shaped muscle at the bottom of the rib cage. The diaphragm contracts down as you inhale and relaxes upward to exhale air out.
The ribs connect in three places on our bodies. The ribs have one connection to the sternum in the front and two connections on our spine that are made up of synovial joints. These joints are free moving and allow the head of the rib to be able to move throughout our breaths. When these joints become stuck or fixated we can feel this as pain in our spine or as a restriction when we try to take a deep breath. These fixations don’t allow for proper movement of the ribs, which decreases the intended function of our body’s respiratory system.
Chiropractic can help by restoring proper motion to these joints. Through gentle adjustments the ribs are returned to their intended motion and the adhesion’s fixating the ribs are broken up over time. Patients in my office report breathing is easier, less painful, and that they no longer feel tightness in their chest while exercising or breathing deeply. By restoring the proper function of the ribs, we will breathe easier because we are using our ribs as they were designed to function.
At Activate Chiropractic we focus on restoring function to improve health naturally. Come in and see if your ribs are holding you back from achieving your best life.