Showing posts with label Physical Therapy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Physical Therapy. Show all posts

25 January 2021

8 Benefits of Physical Therapy


By Shalini M

If you suffered an injury and want a quick recovery, we suggest you check out physical therapy. A good physical therapist will help you get your wellness back. They will help you choose the right therapies so you can get recovered as soon as possible. The exercises are designed to solve problems you may suffer from. After the therapy, your range of motion and flexibility will get better. Aside from this, physical therapy will help you reduce pain and inflammation. Given below are 8 benefits of physical therapy.

Reducing Pain

After an injury, pain is what you suffer from. If the injury was severe, the pain may also be severe. For pain reduction, your therapist may recommend manual therapy techniques and therapeutic exercises to help you get rid of joint and muscle pain. Aside from this, the therapy will also help you prevent the pain from coming back.

Regaining Balance

After an injury, if you become bed-ridden, it may be hard for you to maintain your balance while walking. Physical therapy can help you regain your balance so you can prevent falls. Apart from this, the exercises will enable you to boost your coordination.

Avoiding surgery

After an injury, the doctors will decide if you need surgery. Since surgery involves complex procedures, you may want to avoid it if possible. Physical therapy reduces pain. As a result, you don't have to opt for surgery. Even if you have to get surgery, the therapy will help you get stronger for the procedure. Afterward, you will recover faster.

Improving mobility

Another benefit that you can enjoy is stretching and strengthening your muscle. No matter what type of daily activities you perform, physical therapy will help you improve your motion. As a result, you will perform better.

Slowing the Aging process

When you are young, your body has a better ability to fight diseases and infections. But as you get older, you are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis or arthritis. With the help of a physiotherapist, you can manage these conditions more easily.

Recovery from a stroke

A stroke will make you lose your range of motion. The reason is that it weakens certain parts of your body. On the other hand, if you work with a physical therapist, you will be able to move around your house more easily. You won't have to rely on others to get out of bed and go to the washroom. You will be able to perform these functions on your own.

Recovery from injury

The professional will customize the treatment to treat your specific problems. As they say, not the same treatment can be given to every patient. So, you will be suggested exercises that will be suitable for you.

Prevention of Falls

Prevention of falls is the biggest benefit of physical therapy. Since the exercises will help you maintain your balance, you will be able to walk properly, which will prevent falls throughout your recovery period. 

06 July 2020

Occupational Therapy: The Basics

By Anna Woodward

Occupational therapy is a burgeoning field of healthcare that works to empower people to accomplish the daily tasks that are important to them. It is often mistakenly presumed that the field works exclusively to coach people in the context of employment. In fact, "occupation" is used in its broader definition, in the sense that patients are mentally and/or physically participating in their own lives. By focusing on everyday activities that they want to accomplish, people receive not only the benefits of tasks accomplished but also the therapeutic benefits of engaging with the world around them. While a practitioner of occupational therapy might work with any number of people of various ages and abilities, here are a few common spheres in which they strive to improve the lives of others.

Working With Children

In today's media-saturated society, there are more distractions than ever. It's no surprise that many children report having difficulty focusing in the classroom. For children with attention-deficit disorder (ADD) or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the challenge can be overwhelming. Discrete, manageable goals can be the bricks of structured learning for children who might otherwise be discouraged by the broad, vague notion of "getting an education." In another setting, children with special needs may have difficulty with sensory perception or limited motor skills. Again, occupational therapy gives kids a chance to focus on the small motions that are critical to self-care and meaningful social activity.

At the Office

Occupational therapy has a prominent place in the boardrooms and office suites of the world, helping to maximize performance, reduce the physical impacts of workspaces, and improve employee wellness. A professional can help C-level executives and other people in high-stress positions strike that elusive work/life balance by developing exercise regimens, helping to cultivate hobbies, or providing instruction on meditation. Office-wide, a therapist might assist in making a workplace more ergonomic, or develop team-building exercises that encourage communal interaction and skill development.

In the Hospital and Beyond

Another common realm where this practice can be beneficial is aiding people who have suffered limited mobility as a result of accident or illness. While a physical therapist might focus on building up a client's own intrinsic strength to re-achieve abilities that were lost, an occupational therapist will also look to remove extrinsic impediments. This may mean re-imagining the built or natural environment around patients so they may interact more freely with the world. It might also mean introducing ailing individuals to technology that could improve their tactile function or prevent certain injuries.

"OT," as it is often called, is a rapidly expanding field precisely because it has such broad application and benefits. If something is preventing you from achieving your goals, either internal or external, you may want to consider the benefits of consulting with a professional.

18 August 2019

The Many Benefits of Physical Therapy

By Alfred Ardis

When it comes to healthcare, many people are skeptical about the idea of physical therapy. What exactly is it? Is it an alternative to a regular doctor's visit? Who are PTs, and how can they help me? There are many questions, but this article will shed some light on the role it plays in potential patients' lives.

What Is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy is treatment in response to a health problem that affects a person's everyday mobility. The goal is to alleviate one's day-to-day difficulties and make the small aspects of daily activity easier. By no means is it a substitute for a doctor's visit; on the contrary, it is usually prescribed to a patient by a doctor as a treatment for an ailment. For example, if a subject is diagnosed with a serious hairline fracture in the tibia (leg) and requires crutches, then the doctor will probably provide a prescription for a one or two month series of physical therapy appointments. These appointments will come after the leg is healed, but are meant to strengthen the leg after its absence of walking. The appointments can take place at a private facility or hospital and are in conjunction with one's doctor and insurance.

Who Are Physical Therapists?

PTs are licensed healthcare professionals, usually with a graduate degree, who are trained to know best practices in muscle and body rehabilitation. Often with a background in sports, PTs are familiar with many possible injuries and are skilled in providing relief to those injuries. They supply a better alternative to long-term prescription drug use or surgery. In cases where surgery is necessary, they can reduce pain after a difficult procedure and improve the rehabilitation process. PTs can be found at private clinics, hospitals, home health agencies, or other places where there is a need for treatment.

What Can a New Patient Expect?

During the first appointment with a PT, one can expect a diagnosis and synopsis of ailment and beginner activities to alleviate the ailment. After multiple appointments, one can begin to expect a steady regimen of exercises, stretches, and other activities designed to target the condition and treat it. Many of these activities can be done at home without the need for multiple on-site meetings. A PT will ask a patient to practice the stretches outside of the appointment, but treatment centers are equipped with a variety of machines and tools to assist in treatment.

The benefits of physical therapy are unparalleled: reducing pain, improving mobility, healing tissue, offsetting injuries, managing conditions like heart disease and diabetes, and more.

14 August 2019

How Chiropractic Care Benefits Your Nervous System

By Dr. Daron Stegall

To understand the benefits that regular chiropractic care has on your nervous system, you must first have a handle on the basic functioning of how your nervous system works.

The basic functioning of your nervous system depends on billions of tiny cells called neurons. There are billions of them in the brain and each has a specific job.

This makes the brain like a supercomputer that controls the rest of the body's functions. However, it does no good to have this awesome brain if it can't send and receive messages from the rest of the body. This is where your spine and nerves come into play.

They connect the brain with the body so it can get messages to the body to tell it what to do and how to function while also receive messages from the body letting it know how it's going down there.
If you touch a hot stove, it is a message carried by nerves in your finger to the spinal cord and brain that lets them know you just touched a something hot. The brain and spinal cord send a message back telling your arm muscles to contract or tighten up so that it will pull your hand away.
Now, this happens fast!

Messages that travel via nerves are moving at speeds faster than 200 miles per hour.

3 Different Nerve Types

Not all nerves are just sensing pain and telling you to pull your hand away from a hot stove. As a matter of fact, only about 15% are 'pain nerves.'

There are also nerves that plug into muscles and tell them when to tighten up along with how fast and hard to contract. This allows you to sit, stand, walk, run and even blink!
There are still different nerves that have an indirect but still important impact on your organs as an integral part of telling them what to do as well as sending messages back letting your central computer system (brain and spinal cord) know how it's going.

How Chiropractic Care Affects the Nerves

Sometimes the nerves that branch off the spinal cord can become compressed or compromised in some way because of slight losses in proper alignment and motion of one or more spinal bones.

When this occurs, it is called a Subluxation (Sub-lux-a-on).

If the nerve getting compressed or irritated transmits pain signals in the body, then you will likely experience pain.

If, however, the nerve that is getting compressed or compromised plugs into muscles, you may experience weakness in the muscles.

And, of course, if the nerve getting affected has an influence on any number of the various non-vital organs in the body then you could have issues related to your 'automated' organ function and not even realize that is the problem. You could be taking medications to control the symptoms associated with the effects of the organ not functioning correctly and never even realize the actual cause of your problem is not the organ itself but the fact that it is not receiving proper nerve signals input and thus over time stops functioning optimally.
The reality is that you could have subluxations negatively impacting your nerves and body and never even realize it simply because there is no identifiable 'pain' associated with it.

With a simple, safe and effective chiropractic adjustments you are not only restoring proper motion in spinal joints but also restoring the proper flow of nerve impulses.

Dr. Daron Stegall is a licensed Keller Texas Chiropractor at Express Chiropractic Keller.

26 July 2019

How to Overcome Jet-Lag Quickly and Easily

By Vyara Bridgeman

By Vyara Brigdeman

As you already know, your body has a natural biological clock which can easily go out of balance every time you change time zones or simply when you stay up late and don't get enough sleep. The result is fatigue, lack of concentration, irritability, hunger, and general discomfort.

To reset your biological clock, there are two key factors that should be taken into consideration: sun and food. It is indeed as simple as that: you just need some sun (at the right time!) and some food (also at the right time!). Get these two right, and the rest becomes a piece of cake for your body to sort out and give you back your happiness and wellbeing.

Note that although in what follows I am mainly talking about overcoming jetlag due to time-zone changes, most of the rules apply when you want to get back into a normal rhythm after a few late nights.
If you are going to fly long hall, there are a few things that you must observe to avoid severe jetlag:

  • Adjust your clock to the time zone you are going into as soon you board the plane. Don't play mind games trying to constantly calculate the time difference between the place you flew from and the place you are supposed to land at. Forget the old time zone and work only with the new one while you are on the plane.
  • There is some benefit to fasting for 10-16 hours starting a couple of hours before you board the plane. If you can't do that, at least eat your meals according to your new time zone.
  • Do not drink any alcohol on the plane. Drink coffee ONLY if it is early morning in the new time zone.
When you arrive at your new destination:

  • Get up at dawn and go out in the sun for 30 minutes with no sunglasses on.
  • Get natural light exposure as much as you can during the whole day
  • Have coffee ONLY in the morning. Absolutely no caffeine after midday.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Stay away from all electronic devices as much as you can, but especially after 7pm (no TV too)
  • Sleep in total blackout. Even if you can't sleep at night, rest in the dark, do not turn on the lights, and especially do not turn on your computer, your phone or the TV if you can't sleep.
Follow these tips, and you will be able to reset your biological clock quickly and easily.

08 September 2017

Interrupting the Cycle of Chronic Pain

By Darlene Lancer

If you suffer from chronic pain, you are not alone. Millions of Americans seek treatment for chronic pain, pain that continues for more than six months. Chronic pain is no longer viewed as a symptom, but as an illness in itself. Things we take for granted, such as eating, sleeping, dressing, walking, laughing, working, socializing, and independence may be lost to a person with chronic pain. Frequently, no physical cause can be established, or the initial injury has long since healed, but the pain persists, and generally worsens over time. Nonetheless, each person's pain is both real and unique.

It is important that the person is believed, but some doctors do not take the person's physical complaints seriously, and blame their treatment failures on the patient. An occasional headache, stomach ache, or muscle spasm may occur in reaction to a stressful situation, but the symptom usually resolves quickly, sometimes just from the doctor's reassurance that there is nothing seriously wrong. But when pain persists, more often the emotions are a reaction to the physical pain, rather than the reverse.
The cycle of pain involves the physical body and the mental/emotional body - symptoms of each reinforce the other. The body and mind experience injury and pain as a threat, sending the sympathetic nervous system into a fight or flight response involving electrical and chemical changes that alter heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, body temperature, and muscle tension. Pain signals to immobilize the affected area. The body tightens, breath shortens, and a "whole" mental/physical reaction sets in. Accompanying emotions, ranging from mild concern to extreme fear - fear of pain, disability, loss of function, or even death - exacerbate the pain.

So the person seeks medical attention, receives hope, medication and/or treatment, and usually improves. If pain recurs, the patient rests, but fear returns, along with anxiety, guilt, and anger. If the pain is not relieved, or only temporarily abated, there is greater alarm, setting up a negative feedback loop, perpetuating emotional reactivity.

Certain personality types experience chronic pain as especially difficult. For those who see themselves as strong and invulnerable, their entire self-image is threatened. Pleasers and those who have been abused, tend to externalize power and react to pain passively. Their feelings of helplessness and victimization paralyze their ability to help themselves and seek effective professional care. They may give up easily if their doctor has no solution or blames them for their pain.

At the other extreme are those who typically blame themselves. Guilt is a very common reaction. Interviews with many amputee Israel soldiers revealed that nearly all blamed themselves for their injury, thinking "if only I had... (behaved differently)," despite the fact that the enemy was clearly responsible. (Wall, 2000) Perfectionists and over-achievers fall into this category. They think in all or nothing terms, and feel like failures when they are not productive or at their best. (Swanson, 1999)
In time, there may again be improvement and more activity. Usually, the person is overactive to make up for lost time, followed by another flare up. Now, s/he becomes increasingly focused on the pain and fearful of physical activity, instinctively guarding the affected part of the body, and alert to anything that might trigger another episode of pain. When the pain doesn't relent, a stage of constant anxiety sets in. This state of hyper-vigilance contracts not only the mind, but also the body, which increases the pain. In some cases, just thinking about and describing the pain increase muscle tension. Restorative sleep, the body's PH, blood flow, hormones and brain chemicals are negatively affected, compromising the body's ability to regulate homeostasis and pain. Eventually, the person's mind, body and entire life contract, making relaxation and healing nearly impossible. This is why early intervention to reduce pain and anxiety is vital in order to interrupt the cycle and to avoid long term chronicity and debilitation.

Without relief, muscles lose tone and posture is altered in the person's attempt to avoid pain, contributing to muscle spasm, weakness, imbalance and shortening. The pain begins to spread, as the myofascial sheath tightens around regions of the body, restricting movement and sending pain from head to toe. Over time, muscles atrophy, bone deteriorates, and the immune system weakens, making the body vulnerable to disease.

A once active person becomes caught in a downward spiral of depression, is now lonely and withdrawn from a normal social life, and may have even become chemically dependent as well. The emotional and physical strain, and the loss of confidence, work, and social contacts result in low self-esteem, grief and hopelessness, which magnify the perception of pain.

People often search unsuccessfully for doctors who can alleviate their misery, while simultaneously are distrustful and phobic of pain and change. Unconsciously, they may be seeking confirmation that no one can help. By this time, the person presents as someone needing psychological help. When no physical cause can be established, the doctor may assume that the cause is emotional, reinforcing hopelessness and distrust.

So how can one be extricated from this morass? A comprehensive plan addressing physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs is required. Medication alone can be detrimental, because it builds dependency on the drug and doctor, without support and encouragement for the person to become actively engaged in learning skills to understand and reduce their pain and live a fuller life. The first essential ingredient is a support system. The caregivers' personality and ability to generate a safe environment are just as important as their professional experience. Today there are numerous allopathic and alternative treatment modalities available, but many may provide only temporary relief or none at all. Only the patient can assess whether a treatment is both suitable and effective. Commitment to treatment may be difficult, particularly when there are pain flare-ups, which undermine confidence in the caregiver. The person may want to withdraw from treatment or even blame the doctor or therapist for the recurrence. These flare-ups should be normalized as an inevitable part of the healing process, particularly when the person's activities begin to increase. It may not mean that progress is being compromised. The person must take an active role in determining what works and what doesn't, both in terms of treatment and his or her own activities. Through journaling and discussion s/he can be helped to sort this out. A corollary principal is learning to focus on what is possible, rather than on what is not, without denying ones limitations, and doing too much. As the person participates in his or her recovery, s/he regains a greater sense of control, and feelings of helplessness and depression diminish.

Finding pleasurable activities is very important. Small steps, such as listening to music, arranging flowers, helping someone else, or enjoying a special food, movie, or book serve as a distraction from pain, and gradually lift self-esteem and mood, which further reduces pain. Creative activities that stimulate the intuitive "feminine" or "yin" side of the psyche are particularly relaxing and healing. Carl Jung strongly believed in the healing power of creativity.

Pleasurable and soothing sensations, such as gentle massage, holding, rocking, and stroking, activate the body's own healing mechanisms, and remind and reassure the body that it is safe to relax, the way a horse whisperer tames a wild horse. This begins to break the cycle of anxiety and create a safe internal healing environment. Relaxation techniques, including breathing, sounding, biofeedback, hypnosis, and visualization are all useful in calming the body/mind. Of course, good nutrition and adequate sleep are essential.

It's vitally important to understand and express feelings, ideally in individual psychotherapy as well as in a group. People who have been isolated need individual support to "en-courage" them to re-enter the world and reach out to others. Then they can benefit from group interaction. Cognitive-behavioral changes, along with improved communication skills, build self-esteem and reduce emotional reactivity in interpersonal relationships. As the person becomes more hopeful and assertive, s/he experiences less pain and is better able to find and benefit from effective treatment.
Increased social activities and a daily exercise regime build endurance, strength and flexibility. Some individuals may need assistance in organizing their day to increase functioning. For example, they may require an afternoon nap or help driving or shopping. As the person's mood normalizes and pain lessens, s/he can eliminate unnecessary medications. Even if some pain continues, the person needn't suffer, and can learn to lead a fuller, more rewarding life.

This challenge may seem daunting, but these goals are attainable over time.

Darlene Lancer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and life coach with a broad range of experience, working with individuals and couples for more than twenty years. Her focus is on helping individuals overcome obstacles to leading fuller lives, and helping couples enhance their communication, intimacy, and passion. She is a speaker, freelance writer, and maintains private practice in Santa Monica, CA.

For a Free Introductory consultation, reach Darlene on 310 458 0016