Are You Making the Most of Your Direct Access to Physical Therapy?

Are You Making the Most of Your Direct Access to Physical Therapy?

Health content, Pain, Prevention, Treatment
While many states places restrictions on access to physical therapy, Colorado is among those that permit "direct access" to PT. If you live in Colorado, are you reaping the benefits of that? What is direct access? Direct access to physical therapy means that insurance will cover your evaluation and treatment services with a physical therapist without requiring a referral from your physician or other healthcare professional. Direct access is sometimes called "self-referral," because you simply make your own appointment and go to a PT for treatment if you’re experiencing pain or other relevant condition.  Direct access to physical therapy can save you time and money by getting the services you need faster.  Who has direct access to physical therapy? All 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin…
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Hunchback Starting? 3 Physical Therapy Videos Can Help Set Your Posture Straight

Hunchback Starting? 3 Physical Therapy Videos Can Help Set Your Posture Straight

back, Balance, Exercise, Health content, Prevention
Do you have hyperkyphosis? You probably know it as hunchback. If your spine is curving more than it has in the past, you're probably chalking it up to aging. But who wants to look old? Let's tackle that hunchback posture with some physical therapy before it gets worse. Treating and preventing hunchback posture If the mirror tells you that you may be suffering from hyperkyphosis, a trained physical therapist has the tools to evaluate your condition and may refer you to a specialist. Medication can ease pain from the hunchback posture, and in some cases surgery may be recommended. At Heather Lane Physical Therapy, following the evaluation we design and implement either a treatment regimen or a preventative strategy—whichever is appropriate for your specific needs. In the three videos below, Heather…
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How Your Muscles, Joints and Bones Affect Your Balance

How Your Muscles, Joints and Bones Affect Your Balance

Balance, Health content, knowledge, Prevention
When it comes to staying upright, it’s important that your body's physical components - particularly your muscles, joints and bones - are in good shape. If you can keep these healthy, you have a much lower chance of falling. Muscles and joints Your muscles contract and expand to move your body through space. If they can’t do that well, it's easy for you to take a fall. To move the body, your muscles tug on your joints and make you bend. Other structures involved in this process are tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. Muscles cross joints, and when the muscles contract, the joint moves. If the muscles are not sufficiently lengthened - that is, sufficiently flexible - the joint will not move well. It may move with a jerky motion,…
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When You Retire: 3 Things to Think About (Not Money)

When You Retire: 3 Things to Think About (Not Money)

Health content, knowledge, Prevention
We spend our working lives preparing for retirement, establishing savings accounts and IRAs, but not much time making sure we have our health in retirement. Often in all the planning before we retire, we neglect to anticipate changes in mental and physical wellness that can turn a happy, active retirement into a sedentary one. As you transition into your senior years, with a little attention you can maintain and even improve your mental and physical wellness. Aging is a process that requires specialists to help navigate your unique health demands and goals. When building your team of experts for your individual needs as you age and retire, consider three key areas: general health, cognitive health and musculoskeletal health. General health in retirement Primary care physicians (PCPs) are always the frontline…
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Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Can be Addressed by PT

Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Can be Addressed by PT

Health content, knowledge, Prevention
Many older adults are hesitant to bring up pelvic floor dysfunction with their doctors. After all, urinating when you don’t mean to is embarrassing, and some patients fear that they will share their humiliating stories only to be told that they should accept wearing adult diapers for the rest of their lives. Seek help for pelvic floor dysfunction However, you do not have to accept that at all. Find a medical provider you trust so that you can candidly and thoroughly share your symptoms related to pelvic floor dysfunction. Two common types of pelvic floor dysfunction are 1) stress incontinence, when urine squeezes out after you cough, sneeze or experience other sudden contraction of the core muscles, and 2) nonrelaxing pelvic floor problems, when the pelvic floor muscles cannot contract…
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Engaging Mind and Body to Fight the Ugly Truth of Ageism

Engaging Mind and Body to Fight the Ugly Truth of Ageism

Health content, knowledge, Prevention
Fighting ageism keeps you busy! We receive humorous birthday card with the words “over the hill” displayed on the front. We excuse an ordinary error by saying we had a “senior moment.” Well-meaning friends compliment us with, “Wow! You look good—for your age.” We accept these everyday occurrences, but they are hurdles when it comes to fighting ageism. Ageism is a form of discrimination or prejudice as a result of your age. Ageism occurs in the workplace as well as in personal relationships. While younger people experience a different sort of ageism, seniors can find ageism detrimental to their wellbeing. Research shows this to be especially true when seniors believe the negative stereotypes associated with getting older. These stereotypes include memory issues, loss of independence, and developing new symptoms and…
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Medications Can Cause Falls in Older Adults – Manage Yours to Avoid Taking a Tumble!

Medications Can Cause Falls in Older Adults – Manage Yours to Avoid Taking a Tumble!

Balance, Health content, Prevention
Did you know that a number of medications commonly given to older adults can make it more likely that you will fall? While some of these medications are necessary no matter what the side effects, it’s important to know about your risk of falling, and how to minimize that risk, before you decide to take the medication. Why would medicine cause me to fall? A medication can increase the risk for falls because of the medication’s desired effect or because of its side effects. For instance, your medicine might: Cause drowsiness or make you feel tired Change the way your heart beats Cause low blood sugar Lower your bone density Change the way your nerve endings perceive pressure and pain Lowering your bone density has the compounded risk of making…
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Prevent and Treat Hammertoe: Better Shoes Are Just Part of It

Prevent and Treat Hammertoe: Better Shoes Are Just Part of It

foot, Health content, Pain, Prevention, Treatment
Women love shoes. Not all women and not all shoes, but many women like the way a little bit of heel and a pointy toe can take an outfit from everyday wear to nighttime splendor. Men, too, may prefer a sleek, narrow dress shoe for a professional appearance. Unfortunately, those good looks can add up over the years to form the hammertoe that many seniors experience. If this has already happened to you, is it too late to fix it? What Is Hammertoe? Hammertoe refers to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons and ligaments surrounding middle toe joints. When one of these parts weakens, the toe may have a hard time returning to a neutral position. When the toe is stuck in a bent position, eventually the muscles tighten so…
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How to Start an Exercise Routine as an Older Adult

How to Start an Exercise Routine as an Older Adult

Exercise, Health content, Prevention
Aging takes a toll on the body. Muscle mass dwindles, balance becomes precarious, and various medical conditions—Type 2 Diabetes, cardiovascular issues, high blood pressure, strokes—become more common. However, you may be able to keep these conditions away or under control with a regular exercise routine. Also, exercise will give you greater flexibility and higher levels of energy. Even if you have never exercised before, you can start an exercise routine at any time. Within a short time, you should see significant improvements to your health and improve your lifestyle. Do older adults really need an exercise routine? Older adults often assume that exercise is for younger people. They believe they are past their prime and should have started long ago. Banish these thoughts! Older adults can still see many improvements…
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Don’t Fear Aging: Improve Your Mindset to Age  Better

Don’t Fear Aging: Improve Your Mindset to Age Better

Health content, Prevention
Did you know that changing how you think can increase your lifespan, make you healthier and improve your memory, too? It’s true! No matter how old you are, positive change is always possible. Mindset matters! Two beliefs to increase longevity Being optimistic doesn’t mean being a Pollyanna in your view of the world. It does mean having: A general expectation that good things are coming.A belief that you have control over important outcomes. Research indicates that holding these two beliefs can help you live 11-15% longer! Grow your optimism If you don’t have these two beliefs, don’t worry! You can teach your brain to think differently by reframing experiences that feel negative. Start by writing down an experience that carries negative emotions. Read what you wrote. Then, rewrite the experience…
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