Summit

How can I manage low back pain while driving?

Driving is the start and finish of many summer vacations. How do you keep back pain from hours in your car from ruining your holiday? Simplest is taking short breaks to stand and walk, but there are some common postural errors you could likely change as well. Check the position of your seat: make certain your headrest is not pushing your head and neck forward, maximize lumbar support in the lower back rest and angle the front portion of your seat slightly towards the floor. Another common error is leaning to one side – for example the centre console. Optimal posture is sitting square on your “sit bones” with the lumbar back supported and approximately a 90 degree angle between your trunk and hips, legs extended equally in front.

If low back pain is worsening seek more advice at Summit Physiotherapy!

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What is Vestibular therapy?

What is vestibular therapy?

Vestibular therapy is treatment for diseases or dysfunction of the inner ear, or vestibule, which cause vertigo, dizziness, nausea, and imbalance. The most common vestibular problems include BPPV, Meniere’s disease, viral infections, and structural damage or degeneration from aging. BPPV (benign paroxysmal positional vertigo) or “ear crystals” as many people know it, is a condition that is easily treated with a series of maneuvers to shift the “ear crystals” within the inner ear.

Those who suffer from BPPV will experience vertigo – a sense of spinning, with specific movements or head positions, such as rolling in bed, standing up, looking overhead etc. Treatment of BPPV is 98% effective within three treatment sessions. With BPPV and other vestibular dysfunctions, treatment includes a home program tailored specifically to you, with exercises for balance and head and eye movements to stimulate your brain and vestibule.

Although vestibular diseases and dysfunctions are only a small portion of what can cause dizziness, the treatment is very effective. If you believe that you may benefit from vestibular therapy, consult your family doctor and then come visit us at Summit.

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What Can I Do For Tendonitis?

Tendons are thick cords that attach muscle to bone. Tendonitis is an acute inflammation of a tendon, that commonly affects the wrist, elbow, shoulder, knee and Achilles tendon. It is often caused by repetitive activities or incorrect postures at work or home of the affected and surrounding joints, leading to overuse of soft tissues. There are many activities that may cause tendonitis, with golf, tennis, throwing, typing, painting, running, and jumping being a few of them.

Symptoms of tendonitis include pain at the site of the tendon and surrounding area, loss of motion, weakness and swelling. In the acute phases, it is important to rest, ice and avoid the activities that aggravate the problem. However, tendonopathy may take weeks to months to go away, depending on the severity of your injury.

Physiotherapy is very beneficial to assess and treat tendonitis. We can provide education on recovery time lines, guidance on rest and possible splinting/taping, therapy for pain and symptoms, mobility and strengthening exercises, and a plan for progressive loading and gradual return to activity to help prevent tissue damage.

Our goal at Summit Physiotherapy is to help keep you moving!

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What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Heel pain can be very debilitating as we need our feet to get around. Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain. It is an irritation or inflammation of the band of tissue connecting the heel to the toes. Repetitive stresses cause microtears in the fascia. Common symptoms are a sharp pain on the bottom of the heel and/or arch of the foot with the first few steps when you get up in the morning or after prolonged rest. Pain usually eases with walking or activity.

Early diagnosis and intervention is important. Self management may include rest, using ice, stretching, proper supportive footwear, and altering training methods. Try gently rolling a frozen bottle of water under your arch and heel. Stretch your calf muscles until you feel a comfortable pull in the back of your lower leg. Initially, try swapping walking and jogging for bicycling and swimming.

Physical therapy can help reduce inflammation and pain, recommend proper footwear and give an individualized program to help you return to your activity goals, contact Summit Physiotherapy today if you want some help!

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What Can you Do For Tendonitis?

 

Tendons are thick cords that attach muscle to bone. Tendonitis is an acute inflammation of a tendon, that commonly affects the wrist, elbow, shoulder, knee and Achilles tendon. It is often caused by repetitive activities or incorrect postures at work or home of the affected and surrounding joints, leading to overuse of soft tissues.

There are many activities that may cause tendonitis, with golf, tennis, throwing, typing, painting, running, and jumping being a few of them.

Symptoms of tendonitis include pain at the site of the tendon and surrounding area, loss of motion, weakness and swelling. In the acute phases, it is important to rest, ice and avoid the activities that aggravate the problem. However, tendonopathy may take weeks to months to go away, depending on the severity of your injury. Physiotherapy is very beneficial to assess and treat tendonitis. We can provide education on recovery time lines, guidance on rest and possible splinting/taping, therapy for pain and symptoms, mobility and strengthening exercises, and a plan for progressive loading and gradual return to activity to help prevent tissue damage.

Our goal is to help keep you moving, contact us today so we can help you overcome your tendonitis and move well and live well.

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What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Heel pain can be very debilitating as we need our feet to get around. Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain. It is an irritation or inflammation of the band of tissue connecting the heel to the toes. Repetitive stresses cause microtears in the fascia. Common symptoms are a sharp pain on the bottom of the heel and/or arch of the foot with the first few steps when you get up in the morning or after prolonged rest. Pain usually eases with walking or activity.

Early diagnosis and intervention is important. Self management may include rest, using ice, stretching, proper supportive footwear, and altering training methods. Try gently rolling a frozen bottle of water under your arch and heel. Stretch your calf muscles until you feel a comfortable pull in the back of your lower leg. Initially, try swapping walking and jogging for bicycling and swimming.

Physical therapy can help reduce inflammation and pain, recommend proper footwear and give an individualized program to help you return to your activity goals, contact Summit Physiotherapy today if you want some help!

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Headaches

What causes headaches?

There are many different causes of headaches including cervical and tension headaches, cluster headaches, migraines, and other medical causes.

Physiotherapists are excellent at treating tension and cervical headaches.

These types of headaches usually begin as pain and headache at the base of the skull. Pain can be one sided or both, and can refer into the skull and face. These headaches are typically not as intense as migraines and clusters, but tend to last longer.

Physiotherapy treatment for cervicogenic and tension headaches include a variety of pain relief techniques – perhaps including acupuncture or needling if your therapists has acquired those skills. Also beneficial is a home exercise program of postural correction and hands on therapy for the affected muscles and joints.

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Have you experienced jaw pain?

 

The jaw, or temporomandibular joint (TMJ), is like any other joint in our body and therefore, can be affected by injury and other joint conditions. Some contributing factors to developing TMJ disorders include injuries, such as motor vehicle accidents, tooth abnormalities, neck dysfunction, poor posture, autoimmune diseases and arthritis. TMJ disorders can affect one’s ability to speak, eat, chew and swallow. TMJ pain is often described as a dull ache around the jaw that comes and goes. Symptoms also include pain in the neck and shoulders, chronic headaches, ear pressure or ringing in the ears, jaw stiffness and limited movement, jaw locking, clicking or popping.

TMJ disorders can be diagnosed by a physical examination of the head and neck. Physio treatment may involve posture correction, release of tight muscles, joint mobilizations, jaw exercises and stretches, acupuncture/needling and modalities for symptom management. In some cases, further diagnostic testing or appliances, such as mouth guards, may be required. Visit us at Summit for more information about your jaw pain.

 

By Haley Carrier

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Why Stay Active this Summer?

 

What’s your favorite summer activity? Whether you enjoy training for a race, playing a game of tennis or basketball with friends, or going for a light walk or bike ride outdoors, all have important health benefits. Physical activity helps build muscle and increase the efficiency of our nervous system, which also helps improve balance and coordination. Cardiovascular-type exercise helps condition our heart and lungs by increasing blood flow to keep these organs strong and healthy.

Exercise also allows our brain to function at it’s best. It helps elevate the natural hormones in our body which can improve mood and feelings of wellness. Physical activity improves alertness, attention and motivation, therefore optimizing our mind-set. It is thought that exercise can help defend us from stress, anxiety and mood disorders. It is important for our mind and body to stay active throughout life and a simple 30 minutes a day of your favorite activity is all it takes!

By Haley Carrier

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What are the different degrees of soft tissue injury and what does it mean for my recovery?

Sprains are injuries to ligaments, strains are injuries to muscle or tendon. They are graded by the degree of tissue damage and numbered 1-3.

A Grade 1 sprain/strain is a minor injury, with damage to up to 10 percent of the tissue. This injury will cause you to experience mild pain and may require a short amount of rest or activity modification.

A Grade 2 sprain/strain is 10 to 90 percent tissue damage. Grade two sprains will cause moderate to severe pain and typically require some rehabilitation, a few weeks of rest and then a gradual return to activity.

A Grade 3 sprain/strain is 90 to 100 percent damage.  These injuries cause either severe pain, or no pain but a severe loss of function. If there is no other muscle or ligament to compensate for the damage, surgery is best. If there are other structures to compensate then rehabilitation can help you return to your pre-injury function (or nearly) over a period of 6-8 weeks.

Contact Summit Physiotherapy if you have any questions.

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