Modified Independence after Modifying the Home

Recently I wrote on SCI, TBI, ALS and other neurological disorders. In these blogs, I mentioned modified functional independence. I discussed how a person can stand, walk, commute in a car, go up and down the stair with limited or no active use of his or her extremities. These all come with the help of technology and use of assistive devices. Continue reading “Modified Independence after Modifying the Home”

SCI: A Comprehensive Guide to Spinal Cord Injury Management

What is SCI?

The spinal cord is a band of nerves that act as a transporter of the information between the brain and the body parts. Any injury to the spinal cord (Congenital or acquired) is called spinal cord injury.

The spinal cord is protected by vertebrae or spine. It is referred to as cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine. Many times, there is an injury to the vertebrae or soft tissues (muscles or ligaments) around it. This kind of injury is not classified as spinal cord injury.

Acquired injuries are a result of Motor vehicle accident, falls, or gunshot wounds. SCI can also happen due to medical or surgical complications or falling an object on back. Continue reading “SCI: A Comprehensive Guide to Spinal Cord Injury Management”

Parkinsons Disease: Understanding the Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s Disease is one of the most common neurodegenerative diseases that are progressive in nature. The disease is a result of degeneration of dopamine-secreting neurons in basal ganglia. The loss or lack of dopamine also causes an imbalance in neurotransmitters in the brain like an increase in acetylcholine neurotransmitter. This increases the influence of acetylcholine neurotransmitter. The disruption of neurotransmitter activity results in neuromotor symptoms which are referred to as parkinsonian symptoms.

 

Parkinson's

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Spinal Stenosis

What is Spinal Stenosis:

Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of spinal canal. It is more common in older populations, mainly after 50 years of age. As the degeneration takes place in the vertebrae, the spinal canal narrows down. As a result, it may push the spinal cord inside the spinal canal. Spinal Stenosis usually occurs in the cervical and lumbar area. Patients may or may not show symptoms or restrictions in their daily routine. The presence, as well as severity of signs and symptoms, depends on the severity of the condition and varies from person to person.  Continue reading “Spinal Stenosis”

Plank: Why & Hows on this Famous Exercise

What is Plank?

Heard about this famous exercise? The plank exercise is many people’s go-to exercise to improve strength, agility, flexibility, endurance, weight loss etc.. Not only that, plank, done therapeutically helps improve core stability, reduce pain and improve posture.

plank

The good thing is, the plank can be done in many different ways depending on a person’s ability. Adding a few variations here and there, you can personalize this very beneficial exercise to use it just for you. In addition, you can also vary the exercise to fit it in your schedule. You can perform a quick 5 or 15 minutes of plank workout and call it a day or choose to add this as a part of the strengthening exercise in your 45 to 60 minutes of workout routine. The choice is yours!! Continue reading “Plank: Why & Hows on this Famous Exercise”

Morning Back Pain : What to do before you head down to doctor’s office.

Morning back pain is common and can occur due to many different reasons. I have heard many people complaining of stiff back or painful back when they first get out of bed. This is a very generalized complaint. The reasons for a morning back pain varies from age, arthritis, posture to any history of back pain in past. It may need a full physical therapy assessment in some cases. In contrast, in few cases, it may be a matter of a small fix here and there. Continue reading “Morning Back Pain : What to do before you head down to doctor’s office.”

How to Perform Kegel Exercise: A Go To Exercise When Leaking Happens

Kegel exercise is performed to strengthen and tone pelvic floor muscles. These are the internal muscles that are difficult to train by doing just regular pull-ups or weight training. Since these muscles control the movement of the bladder as well as bowel (too some an extent), exercising these muscles plays a vital role in the quality of life. It can be done by anybody at any age. Particularly it is more important for people who are pregnant or having incontinence issues. It is good for people who experience a few drops of leaking of urine while sneezing, laughing, or coughing etc. Regardless of gender, this exercise is helpful in the treatment of urinary as well as fecal incontinence. Continue reading “How to Perform Kegel Exercise: A Go To Exercise When Leaking Happens”

How to perform Quad Sets: An Important Exercise in knee Rehabilitation.

I discuss quad sets in many of my previous articles. Quad sets are one of the most important exercises in knee rehabilitation. It can be done preoperatively or postoperatively, with or without pain. It not only helps to increase the muscle strength but also reduces a little amount of pain. This is the first exercise that you will do in rehabilitation after knee replacement or with degenerative arthritis pain. This exercise surely prepares your muscles to perform other exercises. And thereby it gets your body ready to be able to participate in functional activities. Continue reading “How to perform Quad Sets: An Important Exercise in knee Rehabilitation.”

Improving functional independence with Feeding Assistance

Feeding Assistance or making a person independent in feeding may not really seem like a physical therapy topic. Also, it is not that commonly encountered problem in orthopedic setting or high-level functioning individuals. Only until you start seeing patients with some neurological deficits or trauma. With my experience as a PT, one thing for sure is walking is an important aspect of independence but it is not the only aspect of functional independence. There are many tasks a person needs to do to perform his/her daily routine activities independently. Some of the examples of these are feeding, dressing, grooming, hygiene, moving in and out of bed, transferring on different surfaces and walking. You can add some more high-level activities like cooking, laundry, cleaning the house, grocery shopping and even driving but they are not really the basic tasks that a person will need to do on a daily basis. Continue reading “Improving functional independence with Feeding Assistance”

Glute Strengthening Exercise: Tips to Get Stronger Butts.

Have you been told to perform Glute Strengthening Exercise? If you are some type of athlete, you must be familiar with how important our butt muscles are. In addition to playing a crucial role in almost all daily activities, they are useful in stabilizing the hips and pelvis joints. Properly trained and strong glute muscles will not only protect your hip joints and knee joints but also prevents many back injuries. And the bonus is toned glutei helps you cosmetically! I am sure you are already aware of that. Continue reading “Glute Strengthening Exercise: Tips to Get Stronger Butts.”

Squat: Detailed Information on How to Perform Variety of Squat Exercises

There are multiple ways to perform a SQUAT. Majority of you must have heard about one or other form of squat. There are many benefits to performing squatting. Squatting helps to increase muscle strength, functional endurance, tone muscles and one of the famous exercises in the weight loss regime. This is an exercise that can be done by children for fun, adults to lose weight, older individuals to improve muscle strength and balance or any other age in between as a workout routine. Additionally, from beginners to professional athletes practice squatting to prepare themselves for the game. The only difference in all the above mentioned is the way they perform squatting exercise. There are many different ways to perform squats. On top of that, you can change speed, frequency, and intensity to make the exercise easier or little difficult! So in this article, I want to discuss a few different yet important ways to perform squats.

Squat

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How to Perform Weight Loss Exercises Effectively

Obesity can lead to many heart problems. Maintaining an ideal body weight not only aid in good health, but it also helps in improving self-confidence. There are thousands of videos and programs available on weight loss. Weight loss exercises have many health benefits. Depending on your goal, you can workout to improve strength, improve cardio fitness, improve flexibility, burn the body fat, manage weight or just relax your body. The aim of this article is to educate readers on developing a particular program that helps to lose body weight. I am not going to discuss specific exercises or recommend a product here in this article for weight loss. Rather, I want to keep this article open for readers to try to use whatever they can, wherever they can, to gain a better health through exercises. Continue reading “How to Perform Weight Loss Exercises Effectively”

Chin Tuck Exercise: When And How to Perform It?

What is Chin Tuck Exercises:

Chin tuck exercise is one of my favorite exercises. It is easy to do any time, anywhere with no external equipment. In this digital era, chin tuck exercise is a must for most of the people of all age. It can help reduce neck stress, improve posture, increase muscle strength, and relax muscles.

This works great if you spend a lot of your time in front of a screen (for those computer savvy people). Also, it improves a forward head posture or poor neck posture and corrects it. You can perform this exercise in sitting or in standing as shown in the picture. Continue reading “Chin Tuck Exercise: When And How to Perform It?”

Pain Management by Physical Therapy: Alternative Methods to Opioids

A few months ago, I wrote about why we should try to avoid pain management with medicines like “opioids”. I briefly described a few alternative pain management in that article. Physical therapy is well known for pain management. Depending on the diagnosis and therapists, physical therapy can do miracles with pain in as short as one session. How do we physical therapy work on pain? Here, I want to discuss few pain management methods that physical therapy use. Some of these treatment options are very easy to utilize at home with no extra supervision.  On the other hand, other options need a close supervision of licensed health care professionals or may even need a physician’s order to initiate one. Continue reading “Pain Management by Physical Therapy: Alternative Methods to Opioids”