Can You Die From Hanging Upside Down
It is possible to die from hanging upside down for too long. Its rare, but blood can pool to the head, which can be extremely dangerous for the body.
If youre interested in trying inversion therapy or another form of hanging upside down, always do so supervised by a professional, like a physical therapist. Or have a friend nearby in case you need to return and cant get upright.
In the news:
One 74-year-old rock climber in Utah was found dead after hanging upside down overnight in his harness. Another hunter in Oregon was in a medically induced coma after getting caught in his harness and hanging upside down for two days. Authorities believe his heart stopped beating during the rescue attempt because blood flow cut off to his lower body was suddenly restored. He was revived and airlifted to a local hospital.
Even If It Is Helpful The Effects Of Inversion Therapy Wont Be Long
Inversion therapy is supposed to stretch the spine, increasing the space between the vertebrae and relieving pressure on the spinal nerves. You may temporarily feel better while you are upside-down, but once you are upright again, your spine will go back to the way it was before. No reputable studies have indicated long-term effectiveness of inversion therapy.
If You Have Back Pain An Inversion Table Can Be More Than An Expensive Novelty Heres How Inversion Therapy Might Be Able To Help Your Back
On a recent episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, housewife Garcelle Beauvais gave her castmate a new home tour. While admiring the décor in Garcelles bedroom, the castmate spied a swing-like chair next to the bed and gave Garcelle a bashful, blushing glance.
Evidence is beginning to point toward inversion therapy temporarily easing back pain.
It was then that Garcelle realized that her castmate had seen the odd-looking contraption and gotten the wrong idea. She laughed and explained that the item was not meant for those kinds of bedroom activities. Instead, It was an inversion table that she used for her back issues.
Read Also: How To Relieve Bulging Disc Pain In Back
Recommended Reading: Advil For Back Pain Dosage
What Is The Accordion Effect
Beyond the situations described above, spinal fluid can build up in your discs, causing lower back pain and other serious issues.
When applying the effect, you allow milking, which helps get rid of some of the extra built-up fluid that has congregated in your spinal discs. In effect, a lot of tension will be taken off of your spinal cord, and your lower back pain will begin to feel relieved.
Weight And Height Limit
Different inversion tables have different height and weight limits. For safety reasons, its extremely important that the inversion table properly supports your bodys size, so be sure to check your devices specifications closely when shopping.
If these limits are not followed, further injury can occur to the person utilizing the table due to risk of falling or the table not operating correctly, says Gallucci.
The most common upper weight limit on inversion tables is 300 pounds, but they can range from 200 to 600 pounds. As for user height, most inversion tables can support people from 4-foot-3 to 7 feet tall.
If you cant find an inversion table that fits your body size, Gallucci recommends working with your physical therapist or physician to see if they can suggest a model that works. Typically, tables that support taller or heavier people are more expensive, so he advises asking a professional for guidance before making a large purchase.
Recommended Reading: Exercise For Lower Back Pain Mayo Clinic
Benefits Of Hanging Upside Down
The goal of inversion therapy is to reverse the compression of gravity on the spine. Its usually done on an inversion table. These tables have ankle holders and can be adjusted to different positions tilting you backward, including one where youre completely upside down.
This may stretch out the spine and decrease pressure on the discs and nerve roots. It may also increase the space between the vertebrae. Potential benefits of hanging upside down during inversion therapy include:
- short-term relief from back pain, sciatica, and scoliosis
- improved spinal health
- increased flexibility
- reduced need for back surgery
But keep in mind, theres little proof to back up the efficacy of these benefits. Studies also havent confirmed the benefits of hanging upside down yet. Most of the studies done so far have been small scale.
What Is Inversion Tables Exactly
When using inversion tables for back therapy, you lie on the table and hang either partially or 100% upside down. This practice helps to promote increased traction on the spine.
The procedure began as far back as Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine. He used inversion table-like treatments, as he would hang patients upside down from objects like ladders.
We have made inversion tables much more comfortable and safe since that period. However, and now they are used by both physical therapists and chiropractors all around the world. You can even get an inversion table for your own home if you so choose.
Read Also: Back Pain Advil
Braces And Corsets Do Inversion Tables Work For Lower Back Pain
These close-fitting undergarments sustain the hips, reduced back as well as abdominal area. Bodices are elastic as well as adjustable braces are tougher and have steel stays. Both lower pressure on the discs tiny, circular paddings of tissue that serve as shock absorbers in between the vertebrae supply back as well as stomach support as well as maintain the spinal column stable. Braces are recommended for short-lived discomfort alleviation as well as to restrict the motion of the spine during recovery from a broken vertebra or specific surgical procedures.
How Do Inversion Tables Work For Lower Back Pain
Many studies have concluded that for non-specific acute lower back pain, you should remain as inactive as possible.
However, for both sub-acute and chronic lower back pain, there exists a ton of evidence that supports the benefits of inversion tables. Gravity simply will help relieve the strain youve been experiencing in your lower back.
Read Also: Advil Or Ibuprofen For Back Pain
Talking To Your Doctor About Inversion Therapy
Just as you should with any other medical condition, you should always talk to your doctor before starting to use inversion tables to treat lower back pain.
Not only can they determine whether or not the practice will be safe for you, but they can give you further information about benefits, ways to approach the therapy, and much more.
Additionally, they can give you great advice about where to get the best deal for an inversion table, and which brands inversion tables will best suit your needs.
In most cases, you should be dealing with a physical therapist or chiropractor when seeking advice about inversion therapy.
Being approved for inversion therapy by your doctor is the most important reason to consult them. Certain medical conditions and medications can make using inversion therapy completely unsafe.
Due to this, a doctor may tell you to avoid the practice altogether. Obese patients, in particular, can cause further ligament and spinal issues by using inversion tables.
Additionally, some conditions will cause you to need to take a break from using the practice until they have healed up.
These conditions include hernias, eye and ear infections, pregnancy, and a few more. Consult your doctor in this area for a full list.
What Are The Risks Of Using An Inversion Table
Using inversion tables is generally safe for most people. However, the peculiar posture associated with the inversion table increases the blood flow toward the neck and head and causes increased blood pressure in these areas.
This could be harmful to you if you suffer from certain conditions, including:
You May Like: Mayo Clinic Low Back Pain Exercises
Do Inversion Tables Work The Pros Cons And Dangers
Are you considering using an inversion table but have some reservations about it? Perhaps, youre wondering what exactly its meant to achieve and if it will work for you. Those were the kinds of concerns I had and I was glad to find useful information that led me to decide whether to use an inversion table.
Here, I’ll share what I’ve learned. I’ll go through some of the advantages, as well as some of the possible downsides. You other concern might be: Are inversion tables dangerous? I have included some tips to help you avoid the dangers of inversion table use and to help ensure you reap maximum benefits from it.
How Do I Start Using Inversion Therapy
So, now you are likely wondering: how do I start using inversion therapy effectively? To put it simply, you should be doing it at a slow pace. You need to slowly adjust your body to hanging upside down.
Start out with a slight angle, maybe even only 15-degrees. Even this small amount of difference in your angle will begin to stretch your muscles.
Eventually, you will get to a stronger degree. In fact, most people never need to exceed 60-degrees to get access to the many benefits of inversion therapy.
Just listen to your body when increasing your angles, and if you begin to feel sore, especially in your lower back, stop using your inversion table immediately.
Read Also: Aleve Lower Back Pain
What Dangers Lie With Inversion Tables
Inversion therapy has been around for decades. The goal is to reverse the compression of gravity on the spine to relieve painful muscle spasms caused by spinal disc compression.
When participating in inversion therapy, people often use devices called inversion tables. The users ankles are secured, and the body is held in a straight position. With your ankles secured, you can then invert your body position so that you are upside-down.
Some people say that inversion tables help to relieve pressure on the spine. However, there are a few things you should know before you give inversion tables a try.
Cold As Well As Warmth Therapies
Its best to use cold compresses or an ice pack, not warmth, promptly following a back injury, because this can minimize discomfort by numbing the area and also stop or minimize swelling. Regarding 2 days after the beginning of back pain, though, using hot pad or a hot-water bottle to your back might be practical. The warmth calms as well as kicks back hurting muscle mass as well as increases blood circulation, which helps the healing procedure. Bear in mind that heat therapy is just handy for the initial week.
Recommended Reading: Advil Or Tylenol For Back Pain
How Can I Reverse My Spinal Issues
You also will be decreasing the effects of or decreasing the chances that you gain, other serious spinal defects that go beyond simple lower back pain. Ailments such as scoliosis and sciatica can be relieved or prevented with this method.
Sciatica, in particular, is important to avoid, as it is a pain that happens in the hip and legs due to pinched nerves in your lower pain. This will cause a ton of lower back pain if it occurs, but it can also be treated by using inversion tables properly.
Inversion Table Vs Spinal Decompression By Optimal Wellness
I have a lot of patients that will ask me if I think an inversion table or spinal decompression therapy would be something that would be beneficial for their back or neck condition. The answer depends on several factors.
First of all, lets talk about what an inversion table and spinal decompression therapy is. An inversion table involves lying on a table that turns you upside down so gravity can decompress the discs in your spine. Non-surgical spinal decompression is a form of traction where the segments in your back or neck are systematically and continuously pulled gently apart by a computerized traction system.
If you would like to see if you are a candidate for either an inversion table or spinal decompression therapy please call our office today at or visit Hancock Spine & Rehab for more information.
Don’t Miss: Is Aleve Or Ibuprofen Better For Back Pain
How Does Inversion Tables Works
Anyway, I was pleased to find out that she approved. Because for me, I had already tried one of the best inversion tables around and could majorly feel the difference.
So yes, using inversion tables for low back pain can definitely work. But always remember to check with your doctor first. Especially if you have any health conditions or are taking any medications.
Spinal Curvature Due To Tight Muscles
CAUSE: A strong and flexible core is essential to maintaining the neutral spine position. Weak abdominal muscles cause hip flexor muscles to tighten, causing loss of proper curvature in the low back. Muscle tension or imbalance can also cause unhealthy posture or misalignments that result in back pain.
Don’t Miss: Will Aleve Help Back Pain
Tips For Using An Inversion Table Safely
If youre young and dont have other health problems besides back pain, you can safely try inversion therapy at home. People who have herniated disks or arthritis in their hips and knees may be more susceptible to injury using an inversion table. Mullen recommends talking to your doctor before trying inversion at home and taking these steps to do it safely.
Go See A Chiropractor
Chiropractors are trained at manipulating joints, and they understand the foundations of body movement, says Rami Said, D.P.T., of the Columbia University Department of Neurological Surgery. Most people are looking for a spinal readjustment, which helps with vertebrae alignment and joint movements. The neck and spine cracking can also offer relief from aches and pains. Unfortunately the improvement tends to be temporary, so youll need to go back on the regular. In addition, you may consider visiting a physical therapist, who can give you at-home exercises.
Also Check: Aleve Or Ibuprofen For Back Pain
Are There Risks Associated With Inversion Tables
The most common risks associated with inversion tables are an unsafe rise in blood pressure, a rise in pressure in the eyes , or a rise in heart rate. It is therefore recommended that if you have glaucoma, high blood pressure, or cardiovascular disease you check with your doctor before attempting inversion therapy. Falling off the inversion table while getting on or off it is another small risk, so if you try inversion, be careful.
Are Inversion Tables Good For Bulging Discs
Bulging discs occur when a lower back disc bulges between the vertebrae. The bulge can cause lower back and leg pain, which is exacerbated by constant movement. It is not as severe as herniated discs, but more symptoms may occur, necessitating surgery in some cases.
In the same 2021 study, researchers explored the effect of the inversion table on patients with lumbar discs disease who were at risk of surgery. The researchers aimed to measure the symptoms and compare the surgery rate of three different control groups, one of which utilized inversion therapy.
Their findings suggested that inversion therapy relieved the symptoms of bulging discs and reduced the need for surgery. It was significantly lower than in the two control groups, hence providing support that inversion therapy can be an excellent option for relieving bulging disc symptoms while avoiding surgery.
Recommended Reading: Mayo Clinic Lower Back Pain Exercises
Do Inversion Tables Really Work For Lower Back Pain
Hanging by ones ankles does remove the force of gravity from the discs in the lower back, but it also places a lot of undo strain on the knees, ankles and other joints in the process. Generally, in my opinion, the risks outweigh the benefits for most people with lower back disc problems.
Instead, I recommend the BackHealth exerciser for people with lower back disc problems. The BackHealths exercise program aggressively stretches the spine, especially the lumbar region where most of daily stress accumulates. In addition to actually stretching the lumbar region of the spine, BackHealths program builds muscle strength as it re-establishes correct lift dynamics.
Starting from the bottom up, correct lift dynamics begin in the calf muscles, include the hamstring groups, the gluteal muscles, and end up with the spinal erector groups and the interspinalis muscles. Neck and shoulder muscles also collaborate in a proper lift dynamic. Inversion accomplishes none of these key remedies. Re-establishment of this dynamic cannot be omitted from real spinal rehabilitation.
Regardless of how your back pain is treated, whether it involves surgery or chiropractic care, you will never have a fully functional back until and unless you build your own. No one can do it for you.
How Does This Work
When a patient is inverted, all the gravitational pull that the body, and mainly, the spine feels from just one direction, shifts. This shift helps the spine rest and return to its original structure if it had moved due to this tension.
An inversion table holds one upside down for several minutes. Users and therapists can set the angles on the table to invert the patients in a suitable position. The angling of the table matters a lot in the treatment of different types of pains.
Inversion therapy, of course, requires a therapists supervision, especially if one wants to use an inversion table. There are other ways people can try inversion therapy yoga is one. It is just the idea that a body will be inverted, fighting the pulls of gravity and letting the body relax completely.
It is an old theory that hanging upside down can relieve and heal many problems the body faces. A lot of factors depend on the spine and its strength a strong spine help with posture, movement, flexibility and much more.
You May Like: Will Aleve Help With Back Pain