May 22

Do your feet need support from a custom made insole/ orthotic?

Do your feet need support from a custom made insole/ orthotic? by Olivia O’ Leary D.C BSc Hons 

custom made orthoticsWe spend so much of our time on our feet; walking, running, working or playing sports it’s no wonder that the number of people who suffer foot pain or knee pain from the stress and strain put on their feet is quite staggering. Throw some bunions or collapsed arches into the mix and its an eventual recipe for disaster. Foot pain can be quite crippling when it strikes…so where does it come from?

 SOME FOOTY FACTS & FIGURES:custom made orthotics

  • An average person walks approx 12,000 steps per day (or 4 miles)
  • A person will walk 4 times around the earth circumference in a lifetime
  • A person places 500,000 kilos of pressure on their feet in a lifetime
  • 83% of Irish Population will suffer from an acute episode of foot or foot related pain, the majority of which are treatable and even preventable with proper foot care and Orthotics.

How do feet affect other areas of your body?

custom made OrthoticsThe feet have a direct impact on the rest of a person’s body.  Like the foundation of a house, your feet support the weight of everything above them.

When a small problem develops in your feet, a subtle change in the way you walk will cause a chain reaction of adjustments in your posture and way of walking.  These changes can put stress on joints higher up in your body like those of the knees, hips and lower back which leads to the development of muscular and skeletal problems and pains elsewhere. It can be pointless to treat these other injuries without considering where the root of the problem lies. This brings us on to the topic of orthotics and their use as a treatment.

What do Orthotics do and how can they help?

Tog Custom made Orthotics work on your feet much like glasses work on your eyes- they reduce stress and strain on your body by bringing your feet back into proper alignment.

Custom made Orthotics are designed in such a way that they fit comfortably like an insole in your shoe and but have the advantage of having been custom made for exact imprints of your feet.

Custom made Tog orthotics are biomechanical medical appliances which are made to correct your own specific foot imbalances rather than the generic off the shelf model model which is not specific.

How are Orthotics Created?Orthotics

We offer  TOG Gait Scan technology at Gorey Family Chiropractic which allows a scan of an individual’s foot to be taken and from this information a custom made insole is created which works both correctively and preventatively.   This state of the art technology therefore looks beyond just treating symptoms but determines the root cause of the problem and addresses the malfunction of the foot that has led to the foot pain or problems.

This also relieves abnormal strain off other tissues and structures further up the leg, which can lead to knee pain, hip pain and even contribute to lower back pain. By balancing and buffering the forces exerted during walking, orthotics help to restore normal balance and take pressure off other muscles and joints.

This is particularly helpful for runners or sports people where small foot malfunctions are more pronounced and influential in causing injuries whilst running.

Common conditions where orthotics can be necessary or beneficial in the overall management include

  • Plantar Fasciitis,Heel spur
  • Shin Splints
  • Ilio-tibial band Syndrome,
  • Fallen arches
  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Metatarsalgia
  • Heel Spurs

Lifetime Guarantee:

Tog Orthotics carry a lifetime guarantee against cracking to the supportive Orthotic shell.

If you are suffering from any of the types of  problem mentioned and are based around Gorey, Wexford, Arklow or Carlow it may be time to be checked.  Why not call Gorey Family Chiropractic today speak to one of our friendly team who will be happy to arrange a Tog Gait Scan assessment  to evaluate the need or benefits to be gained from Tog orthotics specific to your own individual requirements.

For further information on this product, please see the Tog Orthotics video on the practice videos section on our website,gallery,orthotics_patient_education_dvd.html

For your convenience all of our clinical team are registered with VHI, Aviva and Laya Healthcare allowing clients claim reimbursement from a wide range of private healthcare Insurance providers.

Opening hours Mon 8-7, Tues 9-5, Wed 8-7, Thurs 9-5, Frid 8-7

T : 053 94 83338  or alternatively email

Gorey Family Chiropractic Clinic, Railway Road, Gorey, Co Wexford.


Apr 24

Using your laptop safely to avoid neck injury

Using your laptop safely to avoid neck injury – By Olivia O Leary D.C BSc ( Hons)

Unsafe: An ongoing trade off between poor neck/head posture and poor wrist/hand posture exists with Chiropractor Yvonne in this image

Unsafe: An ongoing trade off between poor neck/head posture and poor wrist/hand posture exists with Chiropractor Yvonne in this image

Laptop computers are lightweight, portable and convenient but unfortunately their design with the screen and keyboard attached forces laptop users into awkward postural positions. When the screen is positioned by the user at the right height, the keyboard position is too high and when the keyboard is at the correct height the screen is too low.

Laptops pose less risk when used for short periods but with many using the laptop as  their main computer our team at here at Gorey Family Chiropractic were asked for some guidelines applicable for this type of computer user.


  • the neck should be aligned with the spine (a neutral posture – not bent or thrust forward)
  • the back should be relaxed but supported,
  • the shoulders should be relaxed (not hunched or rounded),
  • the elbows should be close to the body and bent at an angle between 90 and 120 degrees and
  • the wrists and hands should straight (not bent or turned).

So If you use a laptop frequently, it is worth investing time into optimising your home or office workstation to promote better ergonomic postures for your laptop use, to avoid what research has shown is the long term inevitability of neck pain and back pain otherwise.

Safer: Using an external keyboard and mouse and raising the screen with paper reams improves this laptop workstation for Chiropractor Yvonne

Safer: Using an external keyboard and mouse and raising the screen with paper reams improves this laptop workstation for Chiropractor Yvonne


Maintain a neutral neck posture by placing the top of the screen at about eye level or slightly lower if using bifocal glasses.

Use a laptop stand or place your laptop on a stable support surface, such as monitor risers, reams of paper, or phone books so that the screen height can be adjusted.

Attach a regular size, external keyboard and mouse to the laptop, and place them on an adjustable keyboard tray or desk if possible. They should be positioned at or slightly below elbow height when it is possible to use an adjustable keyboard tray.

Angle the screen to reduce bending your head forward. Use your eyes instead of your neck to adjust your line of vision.

Reduce glare by positioning the screen at a right angle to windows and away from overhead lighting. Laptop lights that plug into a USB port can be used to provide extra light, if needed.


  1. Clean the screen frequently as dust can make it difficult to read and may increase eyestrain.
  2. Watch for glare from external light sources on your screen which also causes eyestrain.
  3. Use a document holder where possible to angle documents vertically to keep the neck well aligned with the spine.
  4. Take frequent stretch breaks every 30 to 45 minutes.


  • Use a chair that supports a comfortable upright or slightly reclined posture. In a reclined position,
    Safer: A binder helps keep wrists straight and optimises the screen height. Note a ream of paper props feet adding stability. A rolled towel adds lumbar support.

    Safer: A binder helps keep wrists straight and optimises the screen height. Note a ream of paper improves the trunk/thigh angle. A rolled towel adds lumbar support.

    prop your feet up on a box or something similar to maintain a neutral trunk/thigh angle.

  • Be sure to maintain a neutral neck posture (in other words not leaning the neck forward). Use a towel roll or inflatable lumbar pillow to provide low back support.
  • Place the laptop on your lap to help keep your wrists straight while using the keyboard. A 2-3 inch binder with the wider edge toward you knees will create an angle that will help keep your wrists straight and maximize the height of the screen.
  • Don’t place your laptop on top of a pillow or other soft material. The lack of circulation could shut down the fan, which can overheat the computer.
  • On a sofa, place a rolled towel as a lumbar support, raise the feet on a small box so that you are tilted slightly backwards to maintain  straighter spinal alignment.
  • Remember to stand up and stretch frequently.

Our specialist Chiropractic team are trained and hold extensive occupational health experience both in Ireland and the U.K and are specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of back pain, neck pain and other workplace related muscle and joint problems. No referral is necessary.

We have x-ray facilities  located on site and offer spinal health screening programmes and ergonomics assessments to companies and organisations to prevent and manage workplace injury. For your convenience all of our Gorey Family  Chiropractic team are registered with VHI, Glo, Aviva and Laya Healthcare allowing clients claim reimbursement from a wide range of private healthcare Insurance providers.

For further information on our range of services to private individuals or companies contact or alternatively call 053 94 83338

Feb 11

4 Ways to Strengthen your Back

Building Core Muscles Helps Protect you from Back Injury…
The Chiropractic team at Gorey Family Chiropractic are not only concerned with treatment, we also incorporate the benefits of exercise and rehabilitation in combination with treatment to return the spine to a strong stable condition preventing future episodes of back pain. So how can we do this?

Our back muscles are involved in every move we make. The spinal system includes muscles along with the bones, discs, joints and ligaments in the trunk and abdominal area, together known as the core. This complex system helps our bodies twist, turn, bend, extend and bear stress from everyday activities.
Weakness, imbalance or tightness in the muscles that support the spine creates imbalance and can lead to abnormal posture, muscle fatigue and back pain.
The following exercises suitable for all levels help build core muscles to protect the spine and help prevent back pain. There are a number of different ways to strengthen your core. The exercises you choose will depend on whether you have had back problems before, and your age. Be sure to discuss any exercise program with one of our Gorey Family Chiropractic team if you are unsure or if you are in pain at the moment.

1. Pool exercises (easy)

Pool walking is a low-impact way to build core muscles. As you move, the core works against the force of the water. This is gentle on extremities such as knees, hips, ankles and feet.

2. Exercise ball (medium/difficult)

Exercise videos or specific instruction from one of the Gorey Family Chiropractic team will help you understand how to use an exercise ball appropriately. These exercises are deceptively simple and with practice, you can increase the intensity gradually to great effect.

3. Floor exercises (medium/difficult)

A popular core booster is the side plank. Lie on your right side with your right hand on the ground. (Beginners should use the elbow.) Lift yourself up to form a plank, with your right arm straight and left arm at your side. Hold the position, then repeat. Be sure to keep the body in a straight line while tightening the abdominals and gluts.

4. Mind-body workouts (easy to difficult)

Disciplines such as tai chi, Yoga and Pilates help target core muscles. Sign up for a class or rent a DVD exercise program to try at home.  Tai chi is low impact and ideal for people with a history of musculoskeletal problems. Choose “relaxation” yoga for lower impact. Pilates is centered around building core strength and improving posture.
No matter what you do, the key is to find an activity appropriate for your body — one that you enjoy and will stick with so you can continue to build a strong, healthy back. Good Luck and message us if you have any questions 😉 or alternatively call 053 94 83338

Dec 10

The Gorey Family Chiropractic Christmas Shopping Survival Guide

Take the back pain out of shopping this Christmas

Don’t shop till you drop this Christmas.  There’s a right way and a wrong way to shop and it’s important to recognise the physical strain that shopping can place on your body and your back in particular.

We find that there are more back, neck and shoulder injuries suffered during the run up to  Christmas  and eventually evaluated and treated at Gorey Family Chiropractic than at any other time of year and  there’s a few different reasons for this.

Many times people walk long distances on uneven and unforgiving surfaces. Some battle on in high heel shoes trying to carry heavy bags coupled with standing in queues.  The constant struggle with bulky bags over a long day can place huge stress and strain on your spine but particularly if you’ve had back pain before.

The team here at Gorey Family Chiropractic Clinic have put together a list of potential aggravatory factors to help inform you on what to watch out for and ease the strain on your back this Christmas!

Survival Guide Tips:
1. Take your time shopping. 

”But I haven’t got enough time”, we hear you say. Organisation is the key to success for anyone who is recovering from a back injury. Have a clear plan of action, of where to go & what you need to get. It is important to give yourself time, so that you can factor in a couple of coffee breaks to take strain off your back even for just a few minutes.
The pressure of walking with bags all day can send an unstable low back over the edge so pace yourself according to your stage of recovery and strength. Bear in mind also that stress also leads to increased tension and a greater chance of muscle strain.

2. Park close to the shops.

This is really important for anyone with a current injury. There’s nothing worse than having to walk miles and miles back to the car, with your hands full of shopping bags, feeling a deep soreness in your shoulders or low back. It’s a definite recipe for disaster! Instead, park the car close by and do a few trips with lighter bags. Your body will definitely thank you for it.
3. Start off light and consider your shoes.
Ladies, empty any enormous handbags of any unnecessary weight or opt for a smaller bag and only carry essential items that you need for the day ahead.  A bag that you can carry across your body is far better for distributing weight more effectively than a one sided model. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes, no high heels. You know you will suffer otherwise!
4. Carrying and Lifting Bags the Right Way.
Carry shopping bags evenly in each hand to distribute weight – where you can access trolleys, throw everything in and give your shoulders a break. Try not to carry parcels or shopping in front of you as this can cause greater strain on your lower back.
Remember also to bend those knees when lifting off the floor and think about tightening the tummy muscles when lifting heavy groceries into and out of cars. This helps support your spine when you do so.
This is an area where people can come unstuck. Get help bringing the groceries out at the supermarket if you know you need it it’s best not to take the chance if it can be avoided.
5. Dress for the weather.

It sounds obvious but there is a relationship for some between the cold weather and increased muscle strain. Holding yourself stiff if you re feeling the cold places strain on muscle tissues, which for some can lead to strain or in the worst case spasm.The neck and shoulders are particularly sensitive to this problem so think about wearing extra layers and wear a scarf if you’ve suffered neck problems in the past.
6. Can heavy items be bought online?
For bigger heavier items, check if they can be purchased online and minimize the hassle and the strain.
Hopefully this guide will help troubleshoot some of the most common causes of back pain seen at Gorey Family Chiropractic.
New Injury Requiring Evaluation and Treatment this Christmas?
For anyone who has unfortunately recently injured their back   or who is suffering back or neck pain that requires treatment we will have appointments as normal in the run up to Christmas and during Christmas week on Christmas Eve morning and as normal on the 27th and 28th of December.
Call the practice team on 053 94 83338 or email

 “We don’t just wish you Good Health this Christmas and New Year, Gorey Family Chiropractic will help you to achieve it”

Oct 11

Housework and Back Pain; How to Minimise it (that is, the Back Pain)

By Dr. Olivia O’ Leary D.C. BSc Hons

How not to clean the windows…

As boring as it can be you simply can’t get away from day to day housework.  At Gorey Family Chiropractic Clinic we commonly see people suffering and aggravated by back pain as a result of repetitive physical activities around the house. This month we thought we’d offer some practical advice on how to get it done with the minimum of physical strain, particularly on our backs.

90% of people will experience some back pain in their life, but it is not the housework that is to blame, it’s the way we perform the housework that’s causing the problem. In most people’s cases, there is usually some prior injury to the spine or pelvis, with the housework just aggravating the problem further.

So lets look at some of the most common household tasks, and some of the suggestions that our team at Gorey Family Chiropractic Clinic have put forward to prevent and ease back pain:


When you are hoovering or mopping, most people will reach forward with their dominant arm and bend forward at the waist whilst simultaneously twisting. Doing this action again and again, puts considerable strain on the muscles of the lower back.



To avoid twisting your back, you need to keep your hips and shoulders moving in the direction of the work. It is extremely important to stop bending over, so place one foot forward and bend slightly at the knee, this will allow you to keep your back straight.


Just like the hoovering and mopping, bending repeatedly to do the laundry or fill the dishwasher, puts continuous strain on the muscles and joints of the spine.

You may be wondering how do you then overcome the problem of having to bend forward and pick up those dirty socks from under the bed?


Use a technique called the Golfers Reach. This technique greatly reduces the strain on your back.

For example, when you reach forward with your right hand, balance the action by lifting up your left leg. Make sure you use your other hand to hold onto a work surface to provide support. Remember, if you reach further forward with your hand lift the opposite leg higher.

Always remember if not in the Golfers reach position, you must bend your knees. It sounds obvious but this is where the majority of injuries in the lower back occur from, inappropriate bending technique.

Changing the way you do the housework can help prevent and alleviate acute back pain.

However, still getting back pain……?

Symptoms that are continuing for more than one month indicate a deeper underlying condition. If the condition continues, becomes more constant, or the pain is gradually increasing in severity, don’t ignore the situation.

Call Gorey Family Chiropractic Clinic today on 053 94 83338 where one of our expert team will be happy to assist you and get to the root of your problem.