Exercise of the Week #15 – Book Openers for Thoracic Spine Mobility

Check out this week’s Exercise of the Week – Book Openers for Thoracic Spine mobility. It is important to note that your head follows your arm and you are exhaling on the way down. Proper breathing is key to getting the full effect from this exercise.

Our Physical Therapists

Keri Moran, PT
Bruce Buckman, PT, DPT

Our Physical Therapy Services

Our Chiropractor Services


DISCLAIMER: NOTHING AVAILABLE THROUGH OR ON THIS WEBSITE SHOULD BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. OUR WEBSITE DOES NOT OFFER MEDICAL DIAGNOSES OR PATIENT-SPECIFIC TREATMENT ADVICE. IT IS IMPORTANT THAT YOU CONSULT WITH YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL ABOUT ANY CONDITION YOU MAY HAVE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE BEGINNING ANY EXERCISES OR EXERCISE ROUTINE. DO NOT DISREGARD PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE, OR DELAY SEEKING IT BECAUSE OF SOMETHING YOU HAVE READ IN OR ON THIS SITE.

© The Spine and Health Center of Montvale 2016



Exercise of the Week #5 – Single Leg Bosu Ball Star Excursions

This exercise is great for balance and proprioception as well as strengthening the hip and knee joints. Check it out!

Also be sure to call us at 201.746.6577 or email drpete@thespineandhealthcenter.com to reserve your seat for our Knee Injury Prevention Workshop on March 8 at 7 PM.

Our Physical Therapists
Keri Moran, PT
Bruce Buckman, PT, DPT
Irene Whelan, PT


DISCLAIMER: NOTHING AVAILABLE THROUGH OR ON THIS WEBSITE SHOULD BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. OUR WEBSITE DOES NOT OFFER MEDICAL DIAGNOSES OR PATIENT-SPECIFIC TREATMENT ADVICE. IT IS IMPORTANT THAT YOU CONSULT WITH YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL ABOUT ANY CONDITION YOU MAY HAVE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE BEGINNING ANY EXERCISES OR EXERCISE ROUTINE. DO NOT DISREGARD PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE, OR DELAY SEEKING IT BECAUSE OF SOMETHING YOU HAVE READ IN OR ON THIS SITE.

© The Spine and Health Center of Montvale 2016


I have Bursitis and Tendonitis! What is it?

I get so many patient’s that are diagnosed with bursitis and tendonitis and they have absolutely no idea what it is.  All they know is that they went to their doctor, they looked at the area of complaint for a second or two.  They saw that the patient can move the body part ok, but they had pain. The answer…BURSITIS or…..TENDONITIS.  What the heck is bursitis and tendonitis.  Lets begin by getting a definition, then we will break it down by location, the mechanism of injury and ultimately how to get rid of it (which is obviously the most important thing).

BURISITIS:

bursa

First, lets break the word down.  Burs- stands for bursa.  A bursa is a fluid-filled sac lined by a membrane.  It provides a cushion between bones and tendons and/or muscles around a joint. This helps to reduce friction between the bones and allows free movement. Bursae are filled with synovial fluid and are found around most major joints of the body.  -Itis stands for inflammation.  Therefore, when we put it together bursitis stands for inflammation of a bursa.  The most common locations for bursitis are in the shoulder, elbow and hip. But you can also have bursitis by your knee, heel and the base of your big toe. Bursitis often occurs near joints that perform frequent repetitive motion.  If you have bursitis, the affected joint may feel achy or stiff, hurt more when you move or press on it and may look swollen or red.  A lot of my patients get bursitis from throwing a baseball or lifting something over their heads repeatedly, leaning on their elbows for long periods of time, excessive kneeling like my carpet guys or scrubbing floors like my cleaning people and my patients that sit for long periods of time, especially on hard surfaces.  Does this remind you of someone?

TENDONITIS or TENDINITIS

tendon

Again, lets break it down.  Tendon-stands for a thick elastic band that attaches the muscle to a bone.  -Itis again is inflammation.  So putting it together means inflammation of a tendon.  Sometimes the tendons become inflamed for a variety of reasons, and the action of pulling the muscle becomes irritating.  If the normal smooth gliding motion of your tendon is impaired, the tendon will become inflamed and movement will become painful.  There are too many causes for tendonitis to even list.  Anything that you do can case tendonitis if the right mechanisms are there.  Unlike bursae which are not located all over the body, every muscle has a tendon so tendonitis can occur anywhere.  The most common sites are at the base of the thumb, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee and achilles tendon.

 

 

So I have Bursitis and/or Tendonitis, what do I do?  Usually by the time my patients get to me they have tried a long period of “wait and see”.  I usually tell people to avoid the “wait and see” mentality all together.  I know its tough these days, when you look everything up on the internet and it says that most things will go away on its own.  Although, this may be true sometimes, it is definitely not true all the time.  My philosophy is that if your body can handle it, your body won’t even let you know you have something wrong.  By the time your body gives you conscious awareness of a problem (a symptom) for example pain, swelling, redness, spasm, fever it should be looked at by a professional.  Again, most things are not severe, but what if there is something severe going on and you don’t have it checked by a professional, now we have a problem.  The worst thing that can happen with a non-serious condition is that your doctor sends you home and tells you that there is nothing wrong.  However, when you don’t go to a professional and there is something serious going on, the worse case scenario can be very severe. (just my two cents!!!).  Back to the treatment.  The first thing anyone wants to do when they have bursitis/tendonitis is stop the activity that caused it from happening.  Continued irritation will only make the condition worse.  If you are throwing you need to stop throwing, if you are kneeling you need to stop kneeling.  A lot of times just eliminating the mechanism of injury will heal the problem.  Another modality to use is ice.  If you look back into my heat vs. ice blog you can learn more about the benefits of ice.  Anti-inlammatories are helpful for these conditions as well because as we said -itis is inflammation so taking an anti-inflammatory will help reduce the inflammation and help with the overall pain.  I tell all my -itis patients that if you got it once you may be prone to getting it again so strengthening is usually very helpful to prevent further episodes.  There are a few cases that do not respond to general therapies like a just listed so more aggressive or advance therapies are available.  In my office we offer a class IV 15 watt laser therapy to heal tendonitis and bursitis.  We perform techniques like Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) and Graston technique.  We use Kinesio Tape and other supports to help.  Our physicians perform cortisone injections and even P.R.P. injections for the very advanced cases.  This is not the only way to treat it but a very effective combination is usually very successful with my patients.  If treated properly a full recovery is expected and when done correctly therapy prevents the prevalence of further episodes as well.

Condition of the Week- Scoliosis

Every two weeks we are showcasing a condition that is commonly seen in the office. This week’s Condition of the Week is Scoliosis. Early detection of this condition is important because it can have life long effects.

Scoliosis

What every parent should know:

Understanding Scoliosis:

Scoliosis is a progressive musculoskeletal disorder in which there is a sideways curvature of the spine, or backbone causing the spine to curve or twist into a “C” or “S” shape when viewed from the front of the patient. The most common type is idiopathic scoliosis. Children age 10 to 12 and in their early teens. This is the time when children are growing fast. Girls are more likely than boys to have this type of scoliosis.

Doctors classify curves as:

  • Nonstructural, which is when the spine is structurally normal and the curve is temporary. In these cases, the doctor will try to find and correct the causes.
  • Structural, which is when the spine has a fixed curve. The cause could be a disease, injury, infection, or birth defect.

What can be done to help?

Exercise: stabilizing exercises to strengthen areas in the curve that are weak can help restore balance.
Postural counseling: posture is very important since it can further the curve’s development.
Chiropractic care: removing restrictions in the spine can provide better motion and slowing allow the vertebrae to go into proper alignment.
Kineso-Tape: Taping can correct muscle imbalances caused by the curves.

Stress Management – Quick Strategies for Coping with Stress

The Quick Take Away:

  • Eat less sugar: sugar is an extraordinary stress-inducing food that undermines our health in countless ways.
  • Sleep more: go to bed earlier because you still have to get up at your usual time, so to get more rest – one the most effective stress relief behavior you can engage in, and it’s free and feels great.
  • Exercise more: the body’s response to exertion is categorically a must for health in general but a key strategy for melting stress
  • Say no … more often: reduce the demands on your schedule by simplynot committing to so many … things (for you, for your kids, at work).

We all do what we need to do to survive, “get by,” and in hopefully most cases, succeed.  In all of these, good, bad, or ugly, stress accumulates and adds to the load we’re already carrying through life.  Thankfully, we are surrounded with abundant information on how to productively quarantine, reduce, or ideally, dissipate the stress – the question is, have we looked into it yet?

There are none more powerful in managing stress levels than ourselves, and so we are charged with the responsibility of keeping tabs on how we are allowing stressors to affect us psychologically and ultimately, physically.  We understand a few of the physiological effects of chronic stress, and are tasked with finding practical methods to incorporate daily to prevent stress-induced deficiency.

Here are some great “weapons” in our arsenal that everyone can use to combat chronic stress:

  • Get Enough Sleep (usually at least 8 hours)
  • Exercise (doesn’t need to be much, at least 20 minutes a day, 3 days a week)
  • Drink water (you should never feel thirsty, if you are thirsty you need to drink more water)
  • Eat a well balanced diet (plenty of fruits and vegetables)
  • Get adjusted (a balanced body is a healthy body, adjustments keep the body in balance)

We need to practice removing ourselves from our everyday stressors, even if for a few seconds at a time while right in the middle of them, and we need to be on-purpose about it.

One particularly inconspicuous strategy that is fun and costs nothing is a “three second vacation.”  For three seconds, close your eyes and let your mind transport you to the most relaxing place on earth – sights, sounds, scents, everything.  Breathe it all in deeply for three seconds, and then resume your activity (extend duration and/or repeat as many times throughout the day as necessary).

On a larger scale, we challenge you to use some of the most gratifying activities you’ve come to enjoy to assist in the battle against stress.  They don’t necessarily need to cost anything (it doesn’t cost much to take a sketch pad out to draw a landscape or to get out and climb a tree…preferably your own tree), but a reasonable expense is also acceptable (a ride along the coast on a sunny day, top-down in a rented convertible, a round of golf, or a session out on the community airfield with a radio controlled airplane…however, if the expense or challenge of the mechanism adds stress, please find another coping mechanism to use).

We’re all different and there’s no sense in stressing about choosing coping mechanisms, so find your fun and you’ll discover a mechanism that works for you!