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Seek Physical Therapy Before Lower Back Pain Becomes Chronic

Seek Physical Therapy Before Lower Back Pain Becomes Chronic

back, Health content, Pain, Treatment
If you're one of the 8 in every 10 people who experi­ence lower back pain severe enough to think you should probably seek treatment, be assured that it's probably not due to a serious problem. You may connect your low back problem to: A lot of sitting, including sitting to drive. Improper stance when bending or lifting. Poor overall physical condition. Aging. As we age, our muscles weaken and we may experience stiff joints. These both can cause pain in the low back area. Easy solutions to lower back pain You may not consider good nutrition an important tool in keeping your back healthy, but eating well benefits your whole body. Specifically, vegetables with anti-inflammatory properties have been shown to ease this pain. Sleep is another general health aid. It…
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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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Visual and Vestibular Balance Issues Affecting Older Adults: What You Can Do to Stay On Your Feet

Visual and Vestibular Balance Issues Affecting Older Adults: What You Can Do to Stay On Your Feet

Health content
Simply standing up is harder than it looks! When you add in shifting your weight, stepping, navigating hazards and more, it’s no wonder that so many older adults struggle with balance. Because balance issues can lead to falls, it’s important to understand why you might be struggling with balance. With that knowledge, you can notice potential problems and resolve them before you stumble or tumble. Your vision and your balance How well you see influences your balance. If you can’t see well, you may miss potential hazards or spend so much energy trying to see better that you trip and fall. How you see, referred to as "visual processing," also is important. This has to do with how your brain takes in and organizes the information that comes in through your…
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How to Improve Your Hand Arthritis Without Surgery

How to Improve Your Hand Arthritis Without Surgery

Arthritis, Health content, Pain
It seems the older we get, the harder it is to perform precision movements like buttoning shirts or grip tasks like picking up a fork or opening a jar. Hand arthritis can cause joint damage and is one of the health conditions that can accelerate the hand’s aging. Hand arthritis can make it hard to complete mundane tasks with our fingers. But with physical therapy, you can stop and sometimes even reverse the effects of hand arthritis.  Hand osteoarthritis vs. hand rheumatoid arthritis We hear a lot about arthritis in the hands, hips and knees. Two primary types of arthritis can cause pain in the hands. Osteoarthritis (OA) is by far the more common of the two, with 32.5 million adults suffering from it. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) affects a much smaller percentage…
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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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Seniors: Bike Saddle Pain Have You on the Hot Seat?

Seniors: Bike Saddle Pain Have You on the Hot Seat?

Health content, Pain
Riding a bike is great exercise for older adults—until that first twinge of bike saddle pain! During the pandemic, biking has provided a welcomed way for people of all ages to stay active. When seasonal changes like flowers or leaves offer a beautiful backdrop for your ride, your bicycle can glide you along a pathway of paradise and help you deal with stress. Riding a bike takes you outdoors, works your entire lower body and gets your heart pumping when you go uphill or put on a little speed. It’s a good mode of transportation as well, adding to neither your carbon footprint nor your city’s traffic gridlock. But then your butt starts to hurt with bike saddle pain. Don’t let saddle soreness keep you off your bike or force…
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Medicare Coverage for Physical Therapy, Part 3

Medicare Coverage for Physical Therapy, Part 3

Health content
This is the third and final installment of our series on Medicare coverage for physical therapy. Previously, our Medicare Part 1 provided an overview of Medicare. Medicare Part 2 explained how to obtain physical therapy coverage through Medicare Parts A and B, also called "original Medicare." To follow up, this installment explores opportunities to obtain Medicare coverage outside of those provided through original Medicare. The use of additional parts of Medicare is growing. As of 2019, 22 million Medicare members had a Medicare Advantage plan. A 2017 report found that 13.5 million Medicare members had a Medigap plan. Medicare Advantage and physical therapy Medicare Advantage, also called Medicare Part C, is an option that takes the place of original Medicare. All Medicare Advantage plans are required to cover everything that…
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