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Did You Know That a Herniated Disc Can Cause You Serious Back Pain?

Sunday, March 10th, 2019

Both the hips and knees are areas in the body where several muscles, tendons, and joints are joined together to help you achieve complex movement. If there is damage and subsequent pain in these areas, it can be difficult to perform daily activities. There are several specific ways that physical therapy can help relieve hip and knee pain. Call our Crestview office to find out how a trained physical therapist can help you relieve the pain in your hips and knees!

Common Hip and Knee Conditions

There are several specific conditions that often affect the knees and hips. These conditions can occur due to repetitive motion, traumatic injury, or chronic disease.

  • Arthritis – Arthritis is a condition that involves inflammation of tissues that surround the joints. This condition can cause knee and hip pain. A physical therapist can teach you correct posture and proper movement techniques to protect your joints.
  • Strains & Sprains – Strains happen when a muscle or tendon is stretched excessively or torn. A sprain is a stretched or torn ligament. Ligaments may even rupture, causing bruising, pain and limited mobility. A physical therapist can help you recover more quickly while showing you exercise techniques to reduce pain.
  • Meniscus Tears – This is one of the most common knee injuries people experience. A torn meniscus can cause stiffness, swelling, and varying degrees of pain. This condition could be the result of a sudden injury or repetitive motions. You’re at higher risk if you’re engaging in aggressive pivoting and twisting of your legs. A physical therapist can provide non-surgical treatment for a torn meniscus.
  • Bursitis – Bursitis occurs when a small sac of fluid known as the bursa becomes inflamed. This is often caused by overuse or repetitive injuries. Bursitis can occur in a variety of locations in the body including the knees and hips. Physical therapy can aid in recovery and the reduction of pain.

How Physical Therapy Can Help

No matter what condition you have, a physical therapy program can help relieve your pain. Your physical therapist will evaluate your condition and create an individualized program to meet your specific needs. Range of motion and strength measurements may be taken during the physical therapy evaluation. The following are several treatment methods a physical therapist may use to help limit or relieve both knee and hip pain.

  • Manual Physical Therapy –  A physical therapist might use several hands-on techniques to reduce pain in your hips and knees. This could include stretching exercises or a variety of massage techniques.
  • Heat & Ice Physical Therapy – Heat is often used during physical therapy to help increase mobility and lessen pain. A physical therapist may also use ice to reduce swelling and inflammation.
  • Ultrasound Therapy – A physical therapist may use ultrasound to provide deep heating in the tissues. A trained physical therapist can also more easily identify problem areas by using ultrasound.
  • Laser Therapy – Laser therapy is increasingly being used in physical therapy for pain management. It can help increase circulation, improve the growth and reproduction of cells, and can reduce swelling.
  • Home Exercises – A physical therapist can teach you exercises to do at home to alleviate hip and knee pain. Physical therapy techniques can be incorporated into a home exercise program that can become part of your daily routine.

 

Physical therapy treatment may be able to help you remain pain-free and as active as possible. A physical therapist can create a customized program to treat your particular condition.

 

Contact Crestview Physical Therapy to schedule an evaluation with an experienced physical therapist. Find out today how physical therapy can reduce or even eliminate your knee or hip pain!

 

5 Ways Physical Therapy can Put the Spring Back in Your Step!

Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

Do you currently have an acute or chronic pain condition affecting your daily life? Maybe you’re struggling with back pain, a sports injury or impairments following an auto accident. Perhaps you have someone in your family who is experiencing pain and dysfunction. Whatever you or your loved ones are facing, we encourage you to contact Crestview Physical Therapy to schedule an appointment with a physical therapist.

 

Our physical therapists are experts in human movement and employ a wide range of drug-free, non-invasive techniques that benefit our patients in many ways — far beyond “just” symptom management. Check out these top five reasons why working with a physical therapist can help you reclaim the healthy, active lifestyle you want and deserve:

1. Pain-relieving techniques used in physical therapy have a low risk of side effects.

Unlike many medications and invasive procedures, physical therapy services have a very low risk of side effects while remaining highly effective for reducing pain, swelling, inflammation and other impairments related to injury, illness, and disease. Physical therapy techniques require less downtime and can be modified and safely used on everyone from infants to seniors.

2. Physical therapy services are completely customizable.

A standard physical therapy plan of care is completely individualized to the patient. The chief aims of any plan of care are to address the patient’s unique goals, resolve his or her impairments, and optimize his or her recovery, functional independence and long-term health. These outcomes can be achieved through physical therapy techniques such as:

  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Manual therapy, like massage and joint mobilizations
  • Neuromuscular re-education, like balance training
  • Modalities, like dry needling, electrical stimulation, ultrasound, diathermy, orthotics and prosthetics fitting, and kinesio taping

After undergoing a thorough examination with your physical therapist, you’ll receive an individualized treatment plan that can accelerate your healing. This plan is modified to meet your specific needs and lifestyle and relies on your feedback throughout the process, giving you a more active role in your recovery.

3. Physical therapy can help you avoid opioids.

The current opioid abuse epidemic in our country suggests that these potentially harmful drugs are frequently overprescribed. The CDC recommends physical therapy before opioids for the management of many types of chronic pain. Plus, treatment techniques used in physical therapy are “evidence-based,” meaning they are tested in scientific research studies in order to determine their efficacy, effectiveness and safety.

4. A physical therapist can identify hidden factors contributing to your dysfunction.

A physical therapist won’t just “mask” your pain. Our therapists identify and resolve underlying factors contributing to your current condition and increasing your risk of chronic issues. Common factors include shortened muscles, scar tissue, range-of-motion limitations, muscle activation problems, impaired ergonomics and body mechanics, and postural imbalances. If factors like these are left unaddressed, your symptom relief would likely be temporary at best.

Through services such as patient education, work-hardening programs and other techniques previously mentioned, a physical therapist can address both symptom and cause.

5. A physical therapist can help you maximize functional mobility, capacity and performance.

A physical therapist helps his or her patients improve endurance, core stability, coordination, agility, and other physical skills that can carry over into better performance in sports and everyday life. This is essential for young active people as well as the older population looking to avoid age-related debility.

 

In other words, our physical therapy team can manage your injury or disease now as well as help prevent injury in the future.

 

Ready to find some long-lasting solutions to your pain? To schedule an appointment with a physical therapist today and get started on your journey back to health and healing, contact Crestview Physical Therapy today.

 

Getting to the Root of the Problem! Don’t Mask the Symptoms With Meds

Sunday, February 10th, 2019

Chronic pain and other types of pain can put a dent in your lifestyle. If you’re suffering from pain, be sure to give Crestview Physical Therapy a call to learn how our physical therapists can get you on the path to a pain-free life. Don’t make the mistake of relying on meds, as meds only mask the symptoms. Physical therapy is a natural treatment and a non-invasive treatment that works. You won’t have to curl up with pain in bed anymore.  

Using Meds for Pain: It’s Really Just Masking the Problem

Taking painkillers to rid yourself of pain may seem like a good solution, but it’s really not. Over-the-counter meds like aspirin, ibuprofen and acetaminophen can have side effects. Taking a lot of aspirin can cause your stomach to bleed and can also cause kidney damage. Acetaminophen can result in kidney damage. Ibuprofen can cause both kidney and stomach problems. Prescription opioids like codeine, oxycodone and morphine can lead to addiction. Other possible side effects of pain meds include respiratory depression, constipation, anxiety and nausea. Not only does taking meds for pain just mask the problem, it may cause you another one.

The Natural Treatment of Physical Therapy

Sometimes even the thought of exercising may make you sweat but in reality, exercise is one of the absolute best treatments out there for chronic pain. By participating in a physical therapy routine you will see just how effective exercise can be for all types of chronic musculoskeletal and neuropathic pain.

 

Physical therapy is a natural treatment for a variety of root causes of chronic pain, including:

  • Chronic headaches
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Disc degeneration disease
  • Disc herniation

 

A physical therapist has a wide variety of treatment options to offer for pain. Movement therapy, massage therapy, cold laser therapy, microcurrent stimulation and the manipulation of joints and bones are just a few of the methodologies that physical therapists have in their toolbox. All of these treatment modalities help reduce pain, reduce inflammation, accelerate healing and improve daily function.

From Diagnosis to Treatment: The Role of a Physical Therapist

Consulting with a physical therapist can reduce your recovery time. That’s because a physical therapist will treat your entire body by identifying the root cause of pain. A physical therapist will perform an assessment to determine where your pain is coming from. This healthcare professional will develop an individualized treatment plan that is designed to target the root cause of pain. Physical therapists include a comprehensive exam process, which includes a full medical history. Selected tests are done to identify movement-related disorders. For a specific diagnosis, all of the collected exam data is carefully reviewed.

 

Physical therapy entails both active and passive treatment. Active physical therapy treatment may include exercises, motions, stretching and aquatic therapy. Passive therapy treatment may include ultrasound, massage therapy, heat therapy, cold therapy and electric stimulation. You can feel confident that a physical therapist will develop a treatment plan that is just for you and your needs.

 

If you’re in pain, there is an effective solution other than pain meds or surgery. Call our office today to learn how our physical therapists can help you live a pain-free lifestyle. All of our physical therapies are seasoned and certified. Our goal is to get you back in the game, on the road to recovery and to help you live life to its fullest.

 

Want Less Joint Pain and More Mobility? Give Physical Therapy a Try!

Sunday, January 20th, 2019

For whatever reason, your joints just aren’t what they used to be. Whether you’ve been struggling with a recent injury that makes motion painful or you’re simply suffering the usual effects of age-related osteoarthritis, you can’t get around without aches and pains. But gulping down painkillers and leading a sedentary life aren’t very satisfactory solutions for most people. If you want to enjoy your life as fully as possible without being limited by joint aches and stiffness, it’s time to think about an all-natural answer: physical therapy.

Understanding Joint Stiffness and Pain

To understand how physical therapy can help you with your joint symptoms, first, it’s important to understand why those symptoms are happening. Joint stiffness and pain can be caused by a variety of problems. In an acute sprain or strain, for instance, the joints’ muscles, tendons or ligaments may be damaged. The resulting inflammation can be both painful and immobilizing.

But soft tissue injuries don’t have to occur in a dramatic accident — they can also develop slowly over months or years. If your chosen sport, job or hobby causes you to overstress certain joints over and over again, you may end up with chronic tendinitis or bursitis. Sometimes, you can even develop soft tissue pain from doing nothing. For instance, a condition called adhesive capsulitis, or “frozen shoulder,” can make your shoulder all but unusable if you’ve had your arm in a sling for a long time.

 

Perhaps the most common cause of joint pain and stiffness is osteoarthritis. Everyone gets older, after all, and this condition usually stems from age-related deterioration of the cartilage between the bones in a joint. But many people also suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, a painful, damaging joint condition caused by autoimmune issues.

Types of Physical Therapy to Consider

As you can see, there are many ways to develop joint aches and pains. Fortunately, there are also many forms of physical therapy that can address these symptoms, easing your pain and extending your range of motion. Our physical therapist will start by evaluating your condition carefully, from your overall health and your daily activities to how and when you experience your symptoms. Evaluation of the joint itself, and of your ability to move it, can reveal exactly what the underlying problem is. This leads us toward recommending specific kinds of physical therapy, such as:

  • RICE — RICE stands for “Rest,” “Ice,” “Compression” and “Elevation.” If you’re nursing an acute joint injury, our physical therapist may prescribe this protocol to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Stretching exercises — Stretching exercises help injured muscles and connective tissues heal back to their former length and range of motion. These exercises are also good for keeping arthritic joints from becoming stiffer. Our physical therapist may also recommend workouts on a treadmill or stationary bicycle.
  • Hydrotherapy — Hydrotherapy can provide excellent exercise for people whose joints can’t yet bear their full weight. Performing gentle exercises in the water allows the water to support part of your body weight, so you can move those joints and rebuild joint tissues.
  • Joint mobilization techniques — Working with a balance board or “wobble board” can help you improve your pain-free range of motion, especially in the foot or ankle joints. You may also benefit from techniques aimed at breaking up internal scar tissue, which can form over old injuries and cause chronic stiffness.

Get a Personalized Treatment Plan From Our Physical Therapist

Our physical therapist can create a personalized physical therapy plan to suit your specific needs and goals. So don’t put up with painful joints — contact Crestview Physical Therapy!

 

Finding Relief for Arthritis Pain Sufferers!

Thursday, January 10th, 2019

Millions of individuals struggle with arthritis pain and stiffness. There are several important steps arthritis sufferers can take to relieve achy, stiff joints. Physical therapy can be part of an effective plan to ease the pain while remaining active. Call Crestview Physical Therapy today to find out how a physical therapy program can lessen or even eliminate your arthritis pain!

Why Choose the Right Foods?

Nutrition can play a crucial role in easing arthritis pain and discomfort. Besides avoiding MSG, refined carbs, and sugary foods, which can increase inflammation, you’ll want to add these great tasting foods that can help ease your arthritis pain.

  • Soy – High in protein and low in fat, soy is a great tasting way to fight inflammation. You can get your soy through tofu, soy milk, and roasted soybeans.
  • Broccoli – Broccoli has an ingredient called sulforaphane which may slow or even prevent osteoarthritis. Broccoli is great hot or cold and in salads or casseroles.
  • Ginger – Ginger may be able to help reduce inflammation and alleviate arthritis pain. It also adds incredible flavor to almost any food including soups, fruits, veggies, and meat.
  • Walnuts – Like fish, walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and can reduce inflammation. Walnuts can be eaten alone or added to almost any sweet or salty dish.

Why Stay Physically Active by Using Physical Therapy?

While exercise won’t reverse arthritis, it can help slow its progression and ease painful symptoms. Sticking with a regular exercise routine that’s provided by your physical therapist can also help you shed a few pounds, which will ease the strain on your joints. A physical therapist can show you several types of stretches and exercises that address your areas of pain. Physical therapy may also help you avoid taking excessive amounts of medication to reduce pain.

A physical therapist is trained to evaluate your condition and provide the correct exercises to meet your needs. Exercise during physical therapy may also include aquatics. Working out in water provides exercise that is soothing and non-impact. A physical therapist may recommend a heated pool to help relieve pain in arthritic joints.

Why Work With a Physical Therapist?

A physical therapy treatment program can ease the pain from arthritis and help improve your daily life. Working with a physical therapist can help with the following:

  • Strengthen Muscles – Muscles that surround and support aching joints can help limit arthritis pain when they’re stronger and more flexible. Physical therapy techniques can be used to increase strength.
  • Increase Range of Motion – A physical therapy program can help keep muscles and ligaments loose and reduce stiffness. This will lessen pain and improve your overall range of mobility.
  • Learn to Use Devices Correctly – A trained physical therapist can help you learn to use orthotics, walkers, and other assistive devices correctly. This will help lessen the strain on joints when you move.

What Methods Can a Physical Therapist Use?

A qualified physical therapist may use several treatment methods to help relieve arthritis pain. A physical therapist might use massage to loosen muscles and tendons that surround arthritic joints. Physical therapy might include the use of ice packs and ice baths to reduce inflammation. Your physical therapist may also use heating pads as well as other heat methods to loosen tight muscles. Physical therapy treatment may also include laser or ultrasound treatment.

 

A qualified physical therapist can put together an individualized program to help reduce your arthritis pain and keep you as active as possible. Physical therapy is an excellent way to keep your joints, tendons, and muscles working together efficiently. Contact our Crestview office to see how physical therapy can help you live a pain-free life!

 

5 Quick Tricks to Stay Active!

Tuesday, November 20th, 2018

As humans, we are on a never-ending hamster wheel that demands we get as much done as possible, but it’s time that we all become a little more realistic about what is and isn’t possible through sheer willpower.

 

Repeat after us: My willpower has limits.

 

Try as you might, you can’t accomplish world peace (or even your to-do list) within a 24-hour period. Instead, you must employ tricks and tips to stay engaged, motivated, and active on your quest to do it all. Call Crestview Physical Therapy to learn more!

 

Here, we’ve given you five quick tricks — that is, easy strategies that you can quickly implement — to stay active and involved in that thing called life.

Tip #1: Embark on a Mission to Live Pain-Free

What’s the number one reason people give for not staying active? Pain.

 

According to the National Institutes of Health, most Americans experience chronic pain. An estimated 25.3 million adults reported pain every day for the preceding three months in a 2012 National Health Interview Survey. Nearly 40 million adults acknowledge suffering from severe pain, which is also a predictor of other health concerns.

 

Fortunately, there is an effective, easy way to abolish most of your pain: physical therapy. Hands-on therapy from a trained physical therapist or treatments such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation can help alleviate pain and restore muscle and joint function to help you lead a more active lifestyle.

Tip #2: Get Better Sleep

Though it may seem counter-intuitive to say that you need more sleep when you’re trying to stay active, such a statement is accurate.

 

Sleep disturbances occur in one-third of the US population, and yet sleep is vital for the proper functioning of the body. Physical therapy can help you achieve better sleep and, therefore, achieve a higher degree of activity in your waking hours. Physical therapists are trained in areas critical to sleep, including pain modulation, cardiovascular health, tissue healing, and cognitive functioning. A physical therapist can also provide suggestions for how you can integrate sleep health with overall well being.

Tip #3: Use Interactive Tools

There are a variety of products on the market that will encourage, inspire, and track your physical activity. Research shows that utilizing such products may, indeed, have a favorable impact on your levels of activity. The key to success is to establish daily, weekly, or monthly goals that are easily tracked within the tool. Other strategies that are helpful include:

  • Use the tool every single day. Consistency makes something become a habit and habits are notoriously difficult to break.
  • Write down your goal. A common figure is 10,000 steps per day, yet it’s worthwhile to check with a medical professional to avoid overextending yourself.
  • Encourage your friends and family to use the tools as well. Many trackers have interactive features that allow you to measure your progress against someone else’s. This informal type of comparison can really serve as an effective motivator. Most of us also benefit from having a workout buddy.
  • Engage in activities that you enjoy. While tools come with limitations — namely what activities it measures — it is extremely helpful to choose a tracker based on the activities you enjoy. Such activities are easier to maintain over time.

Tip #4: Grab Rover

What they say is true: A dog may be man’s best friend. Or at least a good exercise companion.

The arrival of a new pet, particularly a dog, is an effective way to get owners moving. “Pets need activity, and actually can be your own accountability friend to get at least a short walk in daily. Even if the dog only forces you to get up and let it out without going for a walk, you will have burned more calories than if you sat in front of the television all day.” Your physical therapist may even suggest a dog as part of your treatment plan.

Tip #5: Get Cleaning

Cleaning your house employs a variety of muscle groups and keeps you active. Every step you take and every inch you vacuum helps you stay fit. For an added benefit, squeeze your glutes and abdominal muscles as you’re trailing from room to room.

 

Whether you’re on a quest to stay fit and healthy, or simply want to enjoy life more, call our Crestview office to find out how physical therapy can help.

 

Treating Arthritis Pain the Natural Way!

Saturday, November 10th, 2018

You’ve probably heard of people with arthritis turning to steroid injections, antirheumatic drugs and joint replacement surgery to cope with pain. And in some cases, these more aggressive treatments may help patients with severe arthritis. But for many patients, physical therapy and related natural treatments present better solutions. Call Crestview Physical Therapy today to find out about your options.

Manual Therapy

Physical therapy isn’t just about doing specialized exercises. Manual therapy is the hands-on component of PT. These treatments not only gives arthritic patients much-needed pampering, but they also ease discomfort. Manual pain relief treatment often forms a significant portion of a physical therapy session for arthritis. Massage, heat and cold applications and even specialized machines all play a part in easing aching joints.

 

Your physical therapist can alternate heating pads and ice packs to naturally relieve pain. Ultrasound machines bring soothing heat deeper into affected joints. Targeted massage boosts circulation and creates a soothing, warming sensation for arthritic areas.

Building Range of Motion

For people with arthritis, stiff joints are painful joints. If you try to push the joint further than it can move, the resulting sensation ranges from a nagging twinge to sheer agony. That’s why increasing flexibility through physical therapy is yet another way to promote natural pain relief.

Range of motion work usually involves both flexibility and strength moves. The flexibility exercises gradually allow your joints to become more limber. Resistance exercises strengthen the muscles that support those joints. In this way, your complete physical therapy session will allow you to achieve greater freedom of movement. You’ll also have less discomfort.

Isolating Painful Joints

Sometimes, rest is the best cure for arthritic joints. Yet it’s impractical for most people to take long rest cures in bed. In fact, too much inactivity can actually worsen the problem by weakening surrounding muscles.

 

Instead, your physical therapist can help to isolate a painful joint. Bracing provides natural pain relief for your arthritic condition. A specialized neck collar, a wrist splint — wherever your arthritic pain may be, specialized support for that joint is possible. This type of bracing is another aspect of natural pain relief for arthritis.

Finding New Ways to Move

It’s not always simple to anticipate the actions that bring on arthritic twinges and sharp pains. Simply turning a corner while walking can cause your arthritic shoulder to tense and twist in a way that you never even noticed before — that is until a jolt of pain shoots through you! That’s why learning new ways to move can help you avoid some of those unwelcome sensations over the course of a day.

 

During physical therapy, patients with arthritis learn which motions lead to discomfort. Then, the physical therapist demonstrates new joint protection techniques. They can be as simple as using a purse with a particular kind of strap to take pressure off your wrists. Exiting the car or entering a bathtub differently are also common techniques.

 

If you have arthritic fingers, a physical therapist can demonstrate how to carry objects with your palms instead of grasping them. Laying objects across the arms instead of carrying them in your hands is another common technique. Physical therapy can also “hook you up” with the latest tools — gadgets that make day-to-day tasks much less challenging.

 

Of course, each patient is different when it comes to the best type of physical therapy and related natural treatments for arthritis. Much depends on the location and severity of your condition. Call our Brookmeade Drive office today to learn more. A physical therapist on our team can give you a careful assessment. This evaluation determines the best methods to provide you with natural pain relief.

 

Want to Fix Lower Back Pain? Try There 3 Simple Tips!

Saturday, October 20th, 2018

With over-dependence on prescription medication on the rise, many people with lower back pain are looking for a simpler solution. And according to a study in the BMC Health Services medical journal, physical therapy can prevent dependencies while reducing the cost to the patient. In fact, your physical therapist can not only help your lower back pain during your sessions, but they can provide simple strategies to carry into your daily life. Here are three pain-reducing techniques you can undertake both at home and during physical therapy.  

1. Work Those “Hammies”

Your hamstring muscles can play a key role in whether or not your lower back joints become over-stressed. When the backs of your upper thighs are too tight, your lower back has to do too much work to compensate. Stretching your hamstrings helps lengthen those muscles. It also may soothe your lower back — especially when it’s in spasm.

A physical therapy session can get you on the right track to specific hamstring muscles. In the meantime, try bending over and reaching for your toes twice a day. Don’t strain as you reach down, and try not to lock your knees. If you feel any pain at the outset, discontinue the exercise, and talk to your physical therapist about alternative “hammie” lengtheners.

2. Go to Extremes

Alternating hot and cold compresses and packs on your lower back can provide significant relief. You don’t have to alternate if you prefer just cold treatment or heat therapy only. But often alternating the two extremes helps provide a fuller range of benefits.

Heat increases circulation, and with that extra blood flow comes the healing properties found in your bloodstream. Hot compresses and packs also ease pain by blocking “signals” running from the nerves in your lower back toward your brain. Cold packs come to the rescue with their ability to numb pain, halt spasms, and reduce swelling in the affected area

During physical therapy, you’ll receive expert applications of these hot and cold packs. Your physical therapist can also recommend the best types of hot or cold therapies for your specific condition. As a general rule, ice packs and heating pads are good all-around options. Both are also inexpensive and readily available.

3. Balance Rest With Activity

Bed rest can certainly be the best initial prescription for lower back pain in pain cases. That’s especially true if your pain comes from an injury or re-injury. In fact, resting while applying ice packs is a time-honored way of reducing swelling in the first day or two.

For chronic lower back pain, however, moving around is better medicine than lying around. Activity releases your natural endorphins, which have pain-killing properties, as well as mood-lifting qualities. Of course, don’t overdo your workouts before consulting a professional, but taking a walk is a great way to gently limber up your back while releasing those helpful endorphins. If it helps, wear a brace to support your lower back as you move.

Physical therapy is an important exercise option. It delivers the benefit of exercise — under the watchful eye of a professional. Your physical therapist can warn you about moves that risk re-injury. She’ll also work with you on flexibility and strengthening moves. These exercises build up the muscles that support your spine, to ease lower back pain. They also help provide greater range of motion as you work through that back stiffness.  

Not sure where to begin when it comes to treating your lower back pain? Contact Crestview Physical Therapy to arrange an evaluation. During your first session, you can get started on learning how to make simple changes that decrease the severity and frequency of your lower back pain episodes.

 

How Proper Nutrition can Reduce Pain and Inflammation

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

Proper nutrition can play a key role if you deal with chronic pain or inflammation in your life. Eating the right foods can help your body recover from many different conditions, which is why diet is an important part of any physical therapy regimen. Proper exercise, reducing stress and eating right can all work together to turn around inflammation and chronic pain. If you’d like to know more, contact our office to schedule a consultation with a physical therapist.

What Causes Inflammation?

Inflammation is the body’s immune response to harm or sickness, and it is part of the body’s healing process. If you have a wound, tissue damage, an infection or buildup of toxins in your body, the immune response is triggered to deal with it. Injuries will not heal without inflammation, but if the inflammatory response goes on too long, it can cause chronic inflammation. That’s bad news, and your physical therapist will want to help you get it under control, because chronic inflammation can lead to much worse outcomes, such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and even some cancers. One more thing to note: If you’re feeling pain, there is probably inflammation at that location. The two often go hand in hand.

 

The traditional methods of dealing with chronic inflammation include lots of rest (which usually means not enough exercise) and medication. A lack of exercise, however, can leave you worse off in the long run than doing the simple stretches and exercises that a physical therapist can teach you. Plus, medications can often carry a host of nasty side effects. You may heal, but is it worth it if you’re groggy all the time (or can’t sleep)? The good news about treating pain and inflammation with diet is that it’s all natural!

An Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Nutritionists have had patients report great success in turning around their symptoms by adopting an anti-inflammatory diet. As the body purifies itself during the inflammation process, you can speed that up by switching to a diet that complements the removal of toxins. There are three basic components to an anti-inflammatory diet. Here they are:

  • Heavy on the Vegetables: Vegetables are your new best friend on an anti-inflammatory diet. Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and cabbage are the best options. You’ll want to eat up to nine servings per day, preferably raw. You can substitute fruits for a couple of those servings to break it up, but otherwise, lots and lots of vegetables are the key.
  • Less Dairy & Grains: You’ll want to avoid simple carbs and sugars completely to strengthen your body’s immune response as much as possible. No donuts, no pastries and no white breads. Dairy products should be extremely limited, so very little cheese or milk with anything. Whole grains such as barley, oats, brown rice and wheat are best.
  • Avoid Red Meat: Red meat should be an extremely rare treat in your diet if you’re working to reduce inflammation. The proteins in red meat require extra work from your kidneys to process, so it will slow down the healing process if you eat a lot of it. One small piece of steak, one time per week, should be your maximum limit. That’s the bad news. The good news is that chicken and fish are just fine for an anti-inflammatory diet. Enjoy them with all of those servings of vegetables!

Additional Keys to Success

If you stick to the diet listed above, you should see your pain and inflammation symptoms start to reduce very quickly. Losing weight is another great way to fight inflammation, so getting down to your ideal body weight will help. Get some daily exercise and learn to manage your stress to see even better results.

Contact us today if you’d like to speak with a physical therapist about pain management or additional advice on how to reduce inflammation!

 

Arthritis Pain Sufferers- This Blog is for You!

Monday, September 10th, 2018

Arthritis is a joint disorder, which features inflammation, pain and stiffness. There is also often a loss in movement with arthritis, as the joints are too inflamed to move. When only a single joint is involved it’s known as monoarthritis. If two or three joints are involved it’s referred to as oligoarthritis. To date there are over 100 types of arthritis. Osteoarthritis occurs due to wear and tear of the cartilage and rheumatoid arthritis results from an overactive immune system. Arthritis is the most common chronic illness in the nation. Many people cannot work due to arthritis and have to go on disability. And it affects men, women and children. Arthritic pain can impede one’s mobility and quality of life. If you suffer from arthritic pain be sure to call us to schedule an appointment with our physical therapist. Physical therapy for arthritic pain has been proven by research to be highly effective.

Diagnosing Arthritis and Getting Treatment

Your doctor will examine your joints for deformity and inflammation, look for signs of disease and review your history of symptoms. Blood tests, urine tests, x-rays or joint fluid tests may be ordered. Early diagnosis can prevent disability and irreversible damage. Exercise routines, medications, rest and physical therapy may be recommended. A physical therapist can provide properly guided exercise regimens. It’s important that you do the proper, safe exercises to avoid injury.

The Role of Physical Therapy for Arthritis

Physical therapy is all about engaging in physical activity and exercise. “Physical activity is essential to optimizing both physical and mental health and can play a vital role in the management of arthritis. Regular physical activity can keep the muscles around affected joints strong, decrease bone loss and may help control joint swelling and pain. Regular activity replenishes lubrication to the cartilage of the joint and reduces stiffness and pain. Exercise also helps to enhance energy and stamina by decreasing fatigue and improving sleep. Exercise can enhance weight loss and promote long-term weight management in those with arthritis who are overweight.”

Arthritis pain can be miserable and debilitating for those who suffer from it, and unfortunately, there is no cure for it. A physical therapist will custom tailor a therapeutic exercise program to help mobility and strength. A physical therapist will create a treatment program that addresses all areas of the body. For example, if you suffer from arthritis pain in the knee an exercise program will address the lower back, hip and ankle, in addition to the knee. That’s because all of these areas contribute to proper knee control and mechanics. Carrying objects, lifting and squatting may also be a part of the treatment plan.

Physical therapy also consists of manual therapy. It has been proven that joint and soft tissue mobilization help patients suffering from arthritis pain. Deep tissue massage, TENS, ice packs and heat therapy may also be part of the treatment plan by a physical therapist. All of these treatments are passive modalities that increase blood flow, reduce inflammation, reduce pain and enhance mobility. All around, physical therapy is an effective, noninvasive method for arthritis pain. Plus, you won’t have to rely on those pain meds, which can lead to addiction.

If you’re suffering from arthritis pain, be sure to schedule an appointment with one of our certified physical therapists. Our research-driven treatments will help you get fast pain relief. Get your life back on track with treatment from our physical therapists. Our physical therapy team is your partner in getting you well and committed to your success.