Patient Inspiration: Carrie Miller

  From Carrie Miller to Dr. Jared Brown, DPT on April 17th: ” Jared! I made it! I’ve run 32 marathons and that was the most insane weather I’ve ever run in! 30mph winds in our face the whole way and upper 30s and constant downpour of rain. I felt pretty good though! I just … Continue reading “Patient Inspiration: Carrie Miller”

 

From Carrie Miller to Dr. Jared Brown, DPT on April 17th:

” Jared! I made it! I’ve run 32 marathons and that was the most insane weather I’ve ever run in! 30mph winds in our face the whole way and upper 30s and constant downpour of rain. I felt pretty good though! I just ran by feel and went with it. My mantra was “overcome”. I stayed positive and ran with a poncho for 24 miles! I qualified for next years Boston by nearly 10 minutes and did better than expected. Shoulder is doing ok too! Now onto the London marathon on Sunday!!  “

Dr. Jared Brown, DPT’s patient Carrie Miller has been keeping busy running 32 marathons! She most recently qualified for the Boston Marathon by 10 minutes and did better than she anticipated. With 30mph winds in the upper 30s and constant downpour of rain, Carrie persevered and came out on top.

Carrie was post op RTC (return to clinic) repair on her shoulder. She was unable to actively lift and with the help of Dr. Jared Brown, DPT and the Innovative Physical Therapy team, Carrie got her shoulder back to full range of motion and could run again. Congratulations Carrie, IPT is beyond proud of you and your accomplishments.

  

Not only is Carrie an avid endurance runner, she is also a coach! Carrie holds two certifications — she is USA Track and Field (USATF) Level 1 certified by the National Council of Accreditation of Coaching Education as well as certified by the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA). Learn more about Carrie, her life and coaching at http://www.onpacecoaching.com/

Time Heals All Wounds

How Long Will it Take My Injury to Heal? One of the first things most people think about after an injury or surgery is, how long will the recovery time be? While sometimes recovery can only take a couple days or weeks, more intrusive injuries can take months or even a couple years to fully … Continue reading “Time Heals All Wounds”

How Long Will it Take My Injury to Heal?

One of the first things most people think about after an injury or surgery is, how long will the recovery time be?

While sometimes recovery can only take a couple days or weeks, more intrusive injuries can take months or even a couple years to fully recover from.

Below is a chart based on AVERAGE recovery times for different injuries (photo image courtesy of @drcalebburgess via Instagram)

As you can see muscle soreness has the shortest recovery time with only a few days of recovery. To relieve muscle soreness remember to always stretch before AND after workouts, roll out sore muscle areas with a foam roller, ball or stick, adding ice/heat when needed for extra relief.

Muscle strain and ligament sprains will take longer; anywhere from a couple days to a couple weeks depending on the severity. Resting, switching between ice and heat, and staying elevated are essential for initial strains/sprains. You can go directly to your physical therapist to assess.

Tendon and bone injuries are more severe than a strain or sprain. Seeing a physician for this type of injury should be done immediately after injury occurs. An outpatient program of physical therapy will most likely be part of your recovery which will give you the tools needed to regain muscle strength, movement and overall health.

Cartilage repair and ligament grafs are the most time sensitive on this chart. This will have required surgery and outpatient programs including physical therapy. Your physician and physical therapist will have created a specified program for you and your specific injury filled with manual therapy, at home exercises, ice/heat/electrical stimulation sessions and possible massage therapy.

Always speak to your physician/physical therapist directly when it comes to your injury/situation. All issues can heal differently and on a different timeline than above. It is important to give yourself the right time and care needed to fully recover.

Sleep Tips for Lower Back Pain

Best Sleeping Positions For Low Back Pain Sufferers Sleeping position and sleeping posture are very important for all of us to be aware of. A poor sleeping position can worsen and even be the underlying cause of neck and low back pain. Certain positions can place unnecessary pressure on our necks, hips, and low back. … Continue reading “Sleep Tips for Lower Back Pain”

Best Sleeping Positions For Low Back Pain Sufferers

Sleeping position and sleeping posture are very important for all of us to be aware of. A poor sleeping position can worsen and even be the underlying cause of neck and low back pain. Certain positions can place unnecessary pressure on our necks, hips, and low back.

It is most important to maintain the natural curve of the spine when lying in bed. This can be accomplished by ensuring the head, shoulders, and hips are in alignment, and that the back is properly supported keeping your spine in a neutral position. For people experiencing neck and/or low back pain at night, trying out the following postures may provide relief.

1. Sleeping on the back with knee support 

Lying on the back is usually considered to be the best sleeping position for a healthy back. This position allows for even distribution of weight along the full length of the body’s largest surface. It also minimizes pressure points and ensures proper alignment of the head, neck, and spine. Try placing a small pillow under the knees to provide additional support and help maintain the natural curve of the spine.

2. Sleeping on the side with a pillow between the knees

 Although lying on the side is a popular and comfortable sleeping position, it can pull the spine out of position. This can strain the lower back and neck. Correcting this is easy. Anyone who sleeps on their side can simply place a firm pillow between their knees. This raises the upper leg, which restores the natural alignment of the hips, pelvis, and spine.

3. Sleeping in the fetal position

A curled-up fetal position may help those with spinal stenosis or tight lower back. Adopting a curled-up fetal position may bring relief during the night, because lying on the side with the knees tucked into the chest reduces  extension of the spine and helps open up the joints.

Feel It in Your Bones

Osteoporosis literally means porous bone.  It is characterized by low bone mass, micro-architectural disruption, and increased skeletal fragility. It often leads to fractures of the wrists, hip, and spine. The first step in the prevention of osteoporosis is ensuring adequate nutrition, particularly maintaining an adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D. Calcium and vitamin D … Continue reading “Feel It in Your Bones”

Osteoporosis literally means porous bone.  It is characterized by low bone mass, micro-architectural disruption, and increased skeletal fragility. It often leads to fractures of the wrists, hip, and spine.

The first step in the prevention of osteoporosis is ensuring adequate nutrition, particularly maintaining an adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D. Calcium and vitamin D are essential to building strong, dense bones when we are young and to keeping them strong and healthy as we age.

Calcium is a major building block of bone tissue. Our skeleton houses 99% of our body’s calcium stores. The calcium in our bones acts as a reservoir for maintaining calcium levels in the blood.  Calcium is essential for healthy bones, nerves, and muscles.

Vitamin D helps to increase the absorption of calcium in our intestines, building stronger bones. Normally, only 10-15% of available calcium is absorbed by our body in absence of vitamin D. When vitamin D is added, the absorption of dietary calcium increases to 30-40%.  Vitamin D also improves muscle function, which in turn improves balance and decreases the likeliness of falls which can lead to fractures.

How much calcium and vitamin D do we need? The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends the following:

 Women age 50 and younger 1000 mg calcium and 400-600 IU vitamin D

Women age 51 and older 1200 mg calcium and 800-1000 IU vitamin D

Men < 50 years old 400-600 IU vitamin D

Men > 50 years old 800-1000 IU vitamin D

Men age 70 and younger 1000 mg calcium

Men age 71 and older 1200 mg calcium

The amounts recommended include sources of calcium from both your diet and supplements.

Calcium is found in many of our foods. Well known sources include dairy – mild, yogurt, cheese, ice cream. Dark, leafy vegetables are also a good source – kale, broccoli, cabbage, bok choy.   We now have many fortified foods (calcium has been added) – cereals, orange juice, almond milk. Did you know nuts, beans and seeds also contain calcium? Almonds, canned and dried beans, and sesame seeds all add calcium to our diets.

Vitamin D is sometimes called the “sunshine vitamin” because it is produced in your skin in response to sunlight. We may not have enough exposure to the sun because of where we live, using sunscreen and clothing to prevent exposure, spending more time indoors, or having darker skin (increased melanin in our skin decreases absorption of vitamin D.) We may need to supplement vitamin D in our diets to prevent vitamin D deficiency that could lead to osteoporosis.

Please check with your physician before taking any supplements.

April: Foot Health Awareness Month!

Did you know it is estimated that by the age of 70 the average person has walked approximately 26,000 miles?! Our feet take quite a beating which causes many changes in our foot structure and gait over time. With April being Foot Health Awareness Month, we want to talk about the most common foot and … Continue reading “April: Foot Health Awareness Month!”

Did you know it is estimated that by the age of 70 the average person has walked approximately 26,000 miles?! Our feet take quite a beating which causes many changes in our foot structure and gait over time. With April being Foot Health Awareness Month, we want to talk about the most common foot and ankle problems along with specific footwear that can aide with some of these problems.

  1. Plantar Fasciitis– an inflammation of the long band of connective tissue running from the heel to the ball of the foot. Heel spurs are bony overgrowths on the heel bone. Painful steps first thing in the morning are common to 83.5 % of patients with plantar fasciitis or heel spur
  2. Achilles Tendinitis-an irritation and inflammation of the tendon that attaches to the back of the heel bone
  3. Ankle Sprains– Most common injury caused by activity. Walking, jogging, running along uneven surfaces and sports can cause this injury
  4. Bunions– an enlargement at the base of the big toe, caused by a misalignment of the joint. They tend to be hereditary, but can be aggravated by shoes that are too narrow in the forefoot
  5. Athlete’s Foot and Onychomycosis– Athlete’s foot is a common infection of the skin characterized by itching, scaling, redness and the formation of small blisters. Onychomycosis is a nail fungus causing thickened, brittle, crumbly, or ragged nails, which can start from Athlete’s Foot
  6. Hammertoes– these are hereditary skeletal issues, affecting any toe on the foot
  7. Flat Foot/Fallen Arches– a structural deformity that causes the lowering of the arch of the foot. Painful fallen arches or high arches may need treatment such as custom orthotics or surgery. People with flat feet may have ankle, knee or low back pain
  8. Neuroma-an enlarged benign growth of nerves, commonly between the third and fourth toes. This can result in pain, burning, tingling or numbness between the toes and in the ball of the foot. Poorly fitting shoes, high heels, trauma and heredity can all be causes

Shoes – What to Avoid and What to Wear

The obvious shoes to avoid- high heels (stilettos), tall wedges, very flat shoes with little to no support. The obvious shoes to wear- sneakers, or shoes with a cushion/support. If you cannot avoid a heel, look for something no higher than 2 inches. Chose a lace up shoe versus a slip on. Avoid plastic or vinyl shoes and opt for something more breathable. A flexible sole in a shoe is important so it allows your toes to bend when you walk.

How do You Find the Right Shoes?

  • Try shoes on at the end of the day when your feet are at the largest they will be
  • If you own orthotics make sure to bring those with you
  • Ignore sizing and pay attention to how your foot actually feels
  • There should be a 1/2 inch space from the end of your longest toe to the end of the shoe
  • Walk around the store in them

If you are experiencing any of the above foot/ankle problems or have some concerns please contact your physical therapist, doctor or local podiatrist for more information.

Ergonomic Tips for Driving

Sitting posture is an important component to avoid or manage neck and back problems. Prolonged sitting, especially in a car, is a common cause of spinal pain. Proper adjustment of your car seat can make a big difference in your comfort while commuting to work and your other activities. To Adjust the Car Seat: Sit … Continue reading “Ergonomic Tips for Driving”

Sitting posture is an important component to avoid or manage neck and back problems. Prolonged sitting, especially in a car, is a common cause of spinal pain. Proper adjustment of your car seat can make a big difference in your comfort while commuting to work and your other activities.

To Adjust the Car Seat:

  1. Sit all the way back into the seat, approximating your buttock with the back rest.
  2. Adjust the seat height as high as possible so your hips are at least as high as your knees. Be sure you can see the road and instruments.
  3. Tilt your seat forward to make the seat horizontal or tilted slightly downward.  This will help to raise the hips to equal or higher than the knees and decrease pressure on your spine.
  4. Adjust the seat forward so you can reach and completely depress the foot pedals without your back moving away from the seat. Your elbows should be bent when hands are placed on the steering wheel. Having to reach to the steering wheel increases the pressure on the lumbar spine and can cause stress in the neck, shoulders, and wrists.
  5. Your feet should be relaxed with your heels on the floor and the balls of your feet able to press the pedals.  The left foot should be placed on the footrest whenever you are not using the clutch (if driving a manual transmission) as this increases the support to both your pelvis and back.
  6. The back of your seat should be inclined to an angle of 100-110 degrees.
  7. Most cars have an adjustable lumbar support.  Adjust this cushion to fill the gap between the seat and your lower back.  You can use a rolled towel or small pillow if the car does not have a built-in support.

Adjusting your car seat can really make a positive difference. The correct seat position will make you and your spine much happier.

A New Take on an Old Technique

Keeping up on all the latest techniques, last month two of IPT’s physical therapists, Jennifer Muir and Dr. Jared Brown attended a technique course on Instrumented Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization. What is it? – IASTM has come to mean any type of tool assisted massage. It is a manual therapy technique using specially designed instruments … Continue reading “A New Take on an Old Technique”

Keeping up on all the latest techniques, last month two of IPT’s physical therapists, Jennifer Muir and Dr. Jared Brown attended a technique course on Instrumented Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization.

What is it? – IASTM has come to mean any type of tool assisted massage. It is a manual therapy technique using specially designed instruments to release tight tissue (muscle knots) and adhesions (scar tissue). IASTM has recently become a popular technique but has been used in western medicine since the mid 90’s and has actually been around for thousands of years evolving from a Chinese medicine technique called Gua Sha.

What does it do? – There are four ways IASTM affects tissue and the healing process

1. Neurophysiological effects – stimulates the nervous system, initiating

the natural healing process of tissue

2. Mechanotransduction – mechanical stimulus using pressure to affect biological change and tissue repair

3. Breaking of Cross-Links – releases fascial restrictions

4. Fluid dynamics – improves circulation, reduces swelling

Why choose IASTM?

Studies are showing immediate improvements in range of motion, strength and pain perception following treatment. IASTM is commonly used for soft-tissue injuries involving muscles, tendons, and ligaments such as strains and sprains.  Great for chronic conditions (ie achilles tendonitis, tennis elbow, hamstring strains, IT band syndrome) IASTM can have great immediate results to regaining mobility, improving tissue tension, speeding up the healing process and returning to sports faster.

Next time you are at Innovative Physical Therapy ask about IASTM, give it a try and see the results!

Calculate Your Heart Rate

Continuing with National Heart Health Month, below you will find Dr. Lindy First’s video on how to calculate your heart rate and some exercise stats to keep your heart in good health. Since partnering up with  our friend, Kim Shapira M.S., R.D last month with her healthy eating challenge we want to encourage you to take … Continue reading “Calculate Your Heart Rate”

Continuing with National Heart Health Month, below you will find Dr. Lindy First’s video on how to calculate your heart rate and some exercise stats to keep your heart in good health. Since partnering up with  our friend, Kim Shapira M.S., R.D last month with her healthy eating challenge we want to encourage you to take care of your heart health and to follow Kim for more info on eating healthy for your heart!

Listen To Your Heart

February is National Heart Health Month. In this month’s newsletter we are going to share some stats on heart health, how to monitor your own heart rate, and explain how you and your Physical Therapist can improve your heart health. Heart Health Stats– courtesy of The Heart Foundation (www.theheartfoundation.org) Heart disease (which includes Heart Disease, … Continue reading “Listen To Your Heart”

February is National Heart Health Month. In this month’s newsletter we are going to share some stats on heart health, how to monitor your own heart rate, and explain how you and your Physical Therapist can improve your heart health.

Heart Health Stats– courtesy of The Heart Foundation (www.theheartfoundation.org)

  • Heart disease (which includes Heart Disease, Stroke and other Cardiovascular Diseases) is the No. 1 cause of death in the United States
  • Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing nearly 380,000 people annually.
  • In the United States, someone has a heart attack every 34 seconds. Every 60 seconds, someone in the United States dies from a heart disease-related event
  • Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined
  • 90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease or stroke.
  • Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease.

Monitoring Your Heart Rate

Normal Resting Heart Rate – Take your pulse for 15 seconds. To check your pulse over your carotid artery, place your index and third fingers on your neck to the side of your windpipe. …

Multiply this number by 4 to calculate your beats per minute.

Maximum Heart Rate (during exercise)-  is to subtract your age from 220. For example, if you’re 45 years old, subtract 45 from 220 to get a maximum heart rate of 175. This is the maximum number of times your heart should beat per minute during exercise.

Improve Your Heart Health

There are plenty of easy steps to improving your overall heart health, from taking daily walks, increasing your exercise regime, to drinking water.

The American College of Sports Medicine (ASCM) lists that, “Adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. Exercise recommendations can be met through 30-60 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise (five days per week) or 20-60 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise (three days per week).”

The best tips to start improving your heart health today are:

  • Educating yourself on proper exercise procedures, and teach you how to self-monitor heart rate and exertion levels during exercise
  • Monitor your cardiac responses to exercise and activity by counting your heart rate or using one of the many health apps via your iPhone, Android or FitBit that can track not only your heart rate but your active calories and calories burned during exercise
  • Begin adopting independent exercise and activity into your daily routine- cardio, strength training, flexibility, resistance training and functional fitness training
  • Increase your exercise tolerance with the assistance of your physical therapist – ask your PT for exercises and at home routines to follow
  • Work with your physical therapist to create a tailored program of exercises including flexibility, strengthening and aerobic training

It is never too early to start thinking about this even now without having any cardiac problems. Preventive health planning will decrease your chances of having cardiac problems and increase your overall optimal health. Speak with your IPT therapist today to learn more.