Take A Bite Out of Life! Physical Therapy for Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMJ)

There's Help for TMJ Disorder
TMJ dysfunction affects more women than men and is typically diagnosed for the first time when patients are in their 20s-40s, though the symptoms may have existed for much longer with lesser severity. The early signs of TMJ disorder are often overlooked. For those with TMJ pain, physical therapy can help with:

  • Alleviating pain
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Reducing muscle spasms
  • Releasing scar tissue when applicable
  • Relaxing surrounding muscles, tendons and ligaments

One of the most common causes of TMJ disorder is bad posture. Sitting at desks and hunching over keyboards can place the neck, spine and jaw at an unusual angle, putting undue pressure and strain on the area. Conditions in which arthritis is a symptom can cause pain in the jaw joint.

Stress can result in chronic jaw clenching and teeth grinding, both of which can cause damage and strain on the joint. The disc that cushions movement of the joint can become displaced, resulting in the popping and clicking noises associated with TMJ dysfunction.

More than 10 million people have been diagnosed with TMJ disorder. Other reported symptoms with the condition include jaw fatigue, particularly when chewing, along with ringing in the ears, neck pain and even dizziness.

temporomandibular joint (TMJ)

Take A Bite Out of Life! Physical Therapy for Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMJ)
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is what connects the bottom jaw to the skull. The joint is a hinge that makes it possible to eat and speak, but it can be subject to pain and inflammation from multiple sources. It's a complex system composed of bone, muscle and ligaments and any disturbance or misalignment to the area can result in dysfunction.

The condition is common, but it's often difficult to discern the exact cause. People with the condition may hear and feel clicks and pops when they move their jaw and in some instances it can feel as if the jaw is "stuck" for a brief moment. People who clench their teeth during the day or engage in nocturnal teeth grinding often experience TMJ dysfunction.

TMJ pain can occur on one or both sides of the face. Patients with the condition may experience headaches similar to migraines, feel pressure behind the eyes, have an earache, or a change in the way their teeth fit together. Pain may be present when they chew or yawn. In the most severe cases, the jaw may become locked in an open or closed position.

The pain of TMJ dysfunction can appear after a blow to the jaw, an accident in which whiplash was a factor, as a result of a dental problem, or a misalignment of the neck, spine or jaw. Any action or change that causes trauma to the jaw can result in swelling of the joint and surrounding soft tissues.

temporomandibular joint (TMJ)

Relief and Function with Physical Therapy
The focus of your therapy will be to realign the joint and relax the muscles, tendons and ligaments around it. Your physical therapist will want to ensure that all of your bones and joints are in alignment and in their proper place.

Depending upon what your physical therapist finds during his/her examination, manual manipulation may be employed to increase movement, relieve pain and align the joint in its proper position. Your therapist will provide you with exercises that you can perform to strengthen the joint and area around it to restore motion and alleviate pain in the future as TMJ disorder can often return.

Heat and cryotherapies may be applied to relieve pain and reduce inflammation and swelling. Electrical stimulation or ultrasound therapy can be used to accomplish the same goals. If the disorder is due to a dental problem, your physical therapist can refer you to a dentist specializing in TMJ dysfunction.

Your physical therapist can recommend ergonomic solutions to lessen stress on the back, neck and jaw and offer suggestions on how to perform tasks in different ways that won't place undue strain on the jaw joint and soft tissues. You'll also receive information and instruction on sleep positions that will open the airways and won't stress the neck, spine or back.

TMJ dysfunction can happen to anyone. It's a painful disorder that affects the way you eat, your diet, and your ability to communicate. Your physical therapist has the means to restore your TMJ to full functionality and aid in reducing the chances of another episode.

Physical Therapy for Restful Nights and Pain Free Days

7 Ways Physical Therapy Can Help
Physical therapy treatments can be applied to any part of the body. The methods employed by a physical therapist will focus on relieving pain and inflammation, obtaining the restful sleep you need, and help you retain mobility.

Physical therapy will help you:

  • Relieve pain
  • Sleep better
  • Increase stability, endurance and balance
  • Improve flexibility and mobility
  • Strengthen the body
  • Improve neurological function
  • Aid in preventing disability

Physical therapy treatments work with the body's own healing abilities to release endorphins, the body's natural pain relieving chemical. It's one of the reasons that physical therapy is so effective. Treatments are equally beneficial for residual pain from a previous injury or surgery.

It's a holistic approach that will be part of a multi-faceted treatment program that may also include nutritional and supplement recommendations. A variety of foods can result in an increased level of inflammation, along with medications and other substances.

Physical Therapy for Restful Nights and Pain Free Days
The use of physical therapy to alleviate pain and obtain restful sleep has a history reaching into antiquity. Hippocrates is believed to have been the first physical therapy practitioner. He developed treatments for gout, arthritic joints, and advocated manual therapy, massage and hydrotherapy treatments - all of which are still used today. The treatments he pioneered were later adopted by early Olympians.

There are more than 150 conditions that cause inflammation and pain to joints and the body's neurological system, along with current and prior injuries that can result in pain long after the initial injury has healed. Conditions run the gamut from rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis to migraine headaches and fibromyalgia.

More than 116 million individuals suffer with pain from accidents, injuries and chronic conditions that result in sleep disturbances, lack of mobility, and curtail lifestyles. A physical therapist can assist patients understand the underlying cause of their pain and how it affects their body. Patients will learn new ways of performing everyday tasks for ease and convenience, along with ergonomic and adaptive strategies to lessen stress and pain on the body.

Neck Therapy

Sleep and Pain Relief is Within Your Grasp

One of the most important strategies for relieving your pain is a customized exercise program. Your physical therapist will create a program that factor in your strengths, areas that need improvement, any chronic conditions, and your fitness level.

Physical therapy will help ease pain, allow you to move better, and promotes restorative sleep necessary for the body to repair and rejuvenate itself. It's beneficial for preventing and mitigating the severity of recurrences and relapses. A neck and spinal alignment relieves pressure on joints and the neurological system.

Your physical therapist may incorporate a number of complementary techniques into your treatment. Exercise can include aerobic movements, clinical Pilates and yoga. Manual manipulation is available if your movement is limited or you're unable to participate in a traditional exercise program. The individualized plan will be adjusted to accommodate your progress.

Heat and cryogenic therapies may be utilized, along with ultrasound, electrical stimulation, acupuncture and dry needling. Water-based therapy is particularly beneficial if you have mobility limitations. You'll be buoyed by the water, thereby reducing the effects of weight and gravity on your body by approximately one-third. It's a gentle form of resistance training that can prepare you for more strenuous activities.

Your treatment may include therapeutic massage to ease pain, increase circulation, and maintain movement and flexibility. It stimulates the immune system, aids in detoxifying the body, stimulating the immune system, and relieves stress and inflammation.

Your physical therapy will alleviate pain during the day and promote restful sleep during the night. You don't have to suffer with pain and sleepless nights when relief through physical therapy is so close at hand.

Avoid Children’s Injuries Before They Happen with Physical Therapy

Training With Professionals
Parents and caregivers should ensure that children are under the guidance of a coach or athletic trainer to learn the proper techniques and form needed to be safe in the sport or activity in which they're participating. They should have the appropriate safety gear and know how to use it. It's important that the adults in a child's life set a good example by adhering to the same rules.

Physical therapy can help children avoid injuries in the following ways:

  • Warm up and stretching exercises
  • Prevent overtraining
  • Conditioning
  • Teaching control
  • Improve balance and coordination
  • Build strength and endurance
  • Appropriate safety equipment

Some activities and sports are extremely dangerous and pose a high-risk of injury, prompting experts to recommend that parents not allow their children to participate in them. They can cause more than pulled muscles and broken bones. They can result in neck and back injuries, along with concussions that can have long-lasting effects. Those activities include football, boxing, driving and riding on motorized "toys," and using trampolines.

Overuse and overtraining injuries are common in children and adolescent whose bones are still growing and developing. Children need at least two days off every week from practicing sports and two to three months away from the sport each year. It's essential to maintain proper hydration to avoid fatigue and muscle cramps.

Avoid Children's Injuries Before They Happen with Physical Therapy
As children develop and explore their environment, they're subject to a wide variety of injuries. Some of those wounds and injuries can be serious and even have life-changing effects. Physical therapy offers the means for parents and caregivers to reduce the risk of injuries before they occur.

Injuries are a part of life as children grow, but appropriate preparation can help minimize those injuries and their severity. The adage "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" is just as applicable today as it was when the saying was first coined. A screening and evaluation by a skilled physical therapist can identify potential problems before they can result in an injury.

A physical therapy screening will discover any underlying deficits in strength, agility or movement that might prevent a child from fully participating in a great many activities. If a problem is discovered, the physical therapist can provide treatments to remedy and manage the problem in ways that still enables a child to be active.

Physical Therapy for a Lifetime of Activity
Your physical therapist can provide a comprehensive exam and evaluation to detect any gait or bone conditions that might contribute to an injury. If a problem is identified, gait training can be initiated to ensure bones are straight and your child moves in safe and appropriate ways.

Children can develop behaviors such as putting too much weight on the sides of their feet that can be corrected with physical therapy. Your physical therapist can provide a wide variety of exercises to build control and core strength that lessens the potential of a risk from fast stops, starts and turns.

A physical conditioning program developed by your physical therapist will factor in your child's age, ability, strengths and weaknesses, any prior injuries, and fitness level. An exercise program will be individualized to improve endurance, balance and coordination that will also help in his/her other activities in everyday life.

Your child will learn warm-up and stretching exercises to limber up before any activity. Your physical therapist can provide nutritional recommendations for health and even clothing and material options that will keep your youngster cool and keep them from overheating.

They key to reducing the risk of injuries is to ensure your child has no physical problems that will hinder their development, anticipating difficulties, and expert instruction and treatment by a physical therapist specializing in pediatrics. Your physical therapist can help establish a culture of safety for your child that will allow them to enjoy a lifetime of physical activities and an active lifestyle.

Choosing the Best Physical Therapist (Yes, Your Choice!)

Our promise to you.
We will never settle for "average". It is our promise to provide and advance superior physical therapy services while adding uniquely specific and related services to serve the our community and surrounding region with the utmost quality.


Listening is Part of The Treatment
One of the biggest complaints that patients have is that their medical provider doesn't really listen to them. Physical therapists may have a preference for certain treatments, but the therapist should be willing to listen, be open to other options, and willing to alter therapies to meet the needs of the patient.

Every patient should consider the following when choosing a physical therapist.

  • Is the physical therapist licensed
  • Are physical therapist assistants licensed/certified
  • Is the therapist experienced in the patient's condition if a special need exists
  • Accepts the patient's insurance
  • Is the therapist in the insurance company's network
  • Submits insurance claims
  • Offers discounts or pay-in-full programs

When patients are exploring their physical therapy options, it's important to factor in the location of the practice and its hours. The clinic should be conveniently located to the patient's home or work when appointments are needed. The hours of operation are equally important. Those who work multiple jobs or the night shift may need early morning, late evening, or weekend appointments.

Patients should examine the therapist's cancellation policy. Some practices charge a fee for a missed or cancelled appointment and the cost may be significant. Individuals should also pay special attention to how easy it is to obtain an appointment. Pain and injuries respond better when they're treated promptly.

Choosing the Best Physical Therapist (Yes, Your Choice!)
Choosing a physical therapist is a personal decision and one that shouldn't be made in haste. One of the best ways to locate a therapist is by asking family, friends, co-workers or primary care physician for recommendations. An online search can also be conducted or visit the American Physical Therapy Association website.

While all physical therapists are highly trained and educated professionals, some choose to specialize in specific areas of expertise. Some physical therapists specialize in all aspects of pregnancy related needs, while others choose to concentrate on sports injuries, rehabilitation for stroke or accident victims, pediatrics, neurology or geriatrics. It's important that patients select a physical therapist that has experience in their particular condition.

Try to schedule a consultation with the physical therapist(s) that are being considered. Patients should feel comfortable with their physical therapist, be able to ask questions and talk with them freely about their condition and treatment. Having a rapport with the physical therapist is critical for effective treatment.

A physical therapist may choose to operate their practice where they devote their entire time to one patient at a time. Others work with two to three patients at the same time within the same time frame. Depending upon the nature of the individual's condition and preference, a patient may opt for one choice over the other. Another important consideration is if the patient will see the same therapist for each appointment.


A Recipe for Lifelong Care
Your physical therapist will have an array of treatments that may be employed to ease pain, heal injuries and rehabilitate. Both passive and active methods are available. Passive treatments such as ultrasound will make you feel better, but they shouldn't be the only therapies used. Treatment should include manual therapies administered by the therapist or his/her licensed assistant.

Even after you've selected your therapist, pay attention to billing and the way claims are filed. Claims should be submitted promptly and the practice's billing department should be willing to speak with you should an error occur. Patients shouldn't be surprised with a bill six months after the treatment was provided.

Your musculoskeletal and neurological health is in the hands of your physical therapist and he/she should be someone with which you feel comfortable. Physical therapists can help you with pain relief, healing and rehabilitation of an extensive array of injuries and chronic conditions. Choose wisely for a lifetime of mobility.

Physical Therapy For All Types of MS

Four "types" of MS have been defined and each follows a course of symptoms. Relapsing and remitting is the most common type in which new symptoms can clearly be seen and during remission few if any symptoms may be apparent.

Symptoms include weakness and numbness on either side of the body, vision disturbances and loss, and pain and tingling throughout the body. Tremors, slurred speech, dizziness and fatigue are present, along with electric shock sensations that occur with certain neck movements. Changes in temperature can make symptoms worse.

There's no cure for multiple sclerosis, but physical therapy can help:

  • Strengthen muscles
  • Exercise to maintain flexibility, balance and coordination
  • Alleviate stiffness and spasms
  • Speed recovery after an attack
  • Address neurological symptoms
  • Improve comfort levels
  • Lessen fatigue

Clinical isolated syndrome represents the first time that symptoms are observed, but the individual may not go on to develop MS. Primary progressive MS displays steadily worsening symptoms culminating in disability. Secondary progressive MS begins with a cycle of relapsing and remitting that progress to disability.

Multiple Sclerosis, Physical Therapy and You

Multiple Sclerosis, Physical Therapy and You
Many people are familiar with the term multiple sclerosis (MS), but few know just how unpredictable and disabling the disease can be. MS affects the central nervous system and disrupts the normal flow of neurological impulses between the brain and the body.

Mystery still surrounds the disease and the exact cause isn't known, making it even more frustrating for patients and their families. It may have a genetic component and be triggered by environmental elements. Women are more likely to develop multiple sclerosis than men and symptoms vary widely in type and severity.

With MS, the body's immune system begins to attack the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. It targets myelin, a substance that surrounds the nerves. When myelin is damaged, it forms scar tissue and the damaged nerves don't transmit signals clearly from the brain to the rest of the body, resulting in a variety of symptoms.

MS is more common in temperate climates and an extensive array of viruses has been linked to MS. Smokers are more likely than non-smokers to experience symptoms of MS. Those with multiple sclerosis experience mood swings, forgetfulness and depression, along with bladder, bowel and sexual dysfunction.

Solutions for Multiple Sclerosis

Solutions for MS Challenges
Your physical therapist will focus on delaying symptoms, alleviating those you do have, and managing the disease. A specialized exercise and stretching program will be developed to address weakness in the legs and gait problems that are common in MS.

Manual manipulation and adjustment of the neck and spine help with gait and movement problems and relieves pressure on the nervous system, allowing better transmission of signals between the brain and the body. A program that includes tai-chi or yoga is helpful for breathing, flexibility, strengthening, and can be performed while sitting or standing.

The use of therapeutic massage is beneficial for improving circulation, relieving stress and inflammation, soothing the neurological system, and addressing depression. Complementary therapies may be implemented that includes acupuncture, dry needling, and hydrotherapy. Difficulty walking can be helped with gait therapy to help reduce falls and injuries, improve your stability, and increase balance and coordination.

As the symptoms of MS increase, you may find that canes, crutches, walkers or wheelchairs help improve mobility and your physical therapist can help you learn to use them effectively. Advice on nutrition and dietary supplements is available to help you stay healthy, lessen inflammation, and address any deficiencies in your diet. Your therapist can also aid you with therapies to lessen breathing difficulties.

Physical therapy can assist with all the symptoms associated with multiple sclerosis to help ease pain, reduce inflammation, and improve movement. Assistive devices, therapies to calm the neurological system, methods to delay the onset of disability, and accommodations to aid in performing everyday tasks are all available to improve your quality of life.

Physical Therapy – Another Option for Living with Autism

Autistic Development Through Physical Therapy

Autism is a lifelong condition and physical therapy can help in multiple ways to keep patients of all ages healthy and maintain a better quality of life. Physical therapy is beneficial for:

  • Improved Physical Conditioning
  • Weight Control and Management
  • Better Balance, Stability and Coordination
  • Improved Eye-hand Coordination
  • Better Interactive Skills
  • Increased Fitness and Stamina
  • Improved Body Awareness

Physical therapy may also have a positive effect on social behavior, sensory skills and communication. The development of motor skills is interconnected with social interactions, communication and sensory skills. Physical therapies provide ample opportunities for multiple types of interaction and communication.

There are no specific tests for ASD, but a variety of assessments are helpful in diagnosing autism and its severity. Parents often experience guilt that they didn't recognize the signs of autism in their child sooner, but they shouldn't. Autism symptoms can range from very mild to severe and many patients are high-functioning individuals who demonstrate few symptoms.

Physical Therapy - Another Option for Living with Autism

Physical Therapy - Autism

Autism is often viewed as a condition of the mind, but it also has a strong physical component that can be addressed through physical therapy. People of all ages with autism often have difficulty with motor skills, along with issues concerning balance, coordination and muscle tone.

Patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) typically have movement related problems and the sooner that physical therapy intervention is introduced, the better able the therapist is able to counter many of the difficulties associated with ASD. Impaired communication skills in autism often result in restricted social interactions during which individuals would obtain physical activity.

ASD is far more likely to affect males. It results in delays in posture development, functionality, and motor skills. Early detection and diagnosis are essential, but the early signs of ASD are often overlooked or go unnoticed until a child fails to achieve milestone behaviors typical for their age.

People with autism often display repetitive behavior patterns that serve as self-stimulation such as rocking, spinning and hand flapping. Short attention spans for subjects that aren't preferred, along with obsessive interests in performing actions are common.

The specific causes of ASD are unknown, but the condition may have genetic, biological and environmental elements with symptoms that can be mild or very obvious. Autistic individuals of any age may have very specific routines they must follow when performing tasks such as getting dressed and can become agitated if those routines are disturbed.

Solutions for Autism

POther Solutions for Autism

Your physical therapist provides treatment for your child and works with you to understand the challenges your youngster faces. Strategies for continuing care at home will be provided and you'll learn about precautions you can take to set boundaries to keep children safe. Your physical therapist will also consult and work with teachers for accommodations that make life easier, safer, more comfortable, and promotes learning.

Children and adults with autism will benefit from a customized stretching and exercise program to meet the requirements of the individual, with options for modification as needed. Treatments will focus on maintaining muscle function and improving balance, coordination and stability. Assistance with mobility aids is also available.

Weight management can be difficult if you have autism. Physical therapists can help with nutritional advice and dietary supplements that help with weight control and address any deficiencies that may exist.

If you or your child has autism, your physical therapist has a wide variety of therapies and treatments to help in managing the condition, maintaining health, and helping with various facets of development. Treatments and strategies are designed to assist you or your child function at the highest level possible for success and an improved quality of life.

Let Physical Therapy Reduce Your Fibromyalgia Related Pain

Our promise to you.
We will never settle for "average". It is our promise to provide and advance superior physical therapy services while adding uniquely specific and related services to serve the our community and surrounding region with the utmost quality.

Brain Changes and Fibromyalgia
The heightened stimulation of nerves that's present in fibromyalgia causes changes in the brain. Certain chemicals are present in higher levels than usual in the brain. Over time, the body's pain receptors become more sensitive and over react to any type of pain signal. Many fibromyalgia patients also experience an increased sensitivity to touch, odors, noise and light.

Physical therapy is effective for relieving the myriad of symptoms that accompany fibromyalgia. It can help:

  • Relieve pain
  • Better posture
  • Improve muscle flexibility
  • Maintain range of motion
  • Build strength
  • Reduce muscle tension
  • Improve balance and coordination

Fibromyalgia is an elusive and chronic disease that's often misdiagnosed and misunderstood. It takes years for some patients to receive a definitive diagnosis. The combination of symptoms varies widely among individuals and can rapidly change within the space of a single day due to changes in the weather.

Let Physical Therapy Reduce Your Fibromyalgia Related Pain
Those who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia are happy to finally know what's wrong, but they're often depressed when they contemplate living with the condition. There's no cure for fibromyalgia, but physical therapy is effective in alleviating the symptoms and improving quality of life.

Physical Therapy | Reduce Fibromyalgia Pain

No one knows for sure what causes the disorder, but it's believed that fibromyalgia amplifies the way the brain processes pain signals. The condition is marked by pain, stiffness and fatigue. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and patients experience flare-ups during which symptoms worsen.

Sleep disorders and poor sleep quality due to restless leg syndrome and sleep apnea are common. Individuals experience mood and memory problems and have difficulty paying attention or concentrating. Other symptoms that individuals may experience include depression, cramping in the lower abdomen and headaches.

More women develop fibromyalgia than men. People who suffer from TMJ disorder, tension headaches, anxiety or depression, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are more likely to develop fibromyalgia, as are those with rheumatic diseases such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.

Some cases of fibromyalgia can be linked to a trigger that includes excessive psychological stress, trauma to the mind or body, or an infection or surgery. Other instances are a collection of symptoms that accrue over time. The disorder tends to run in families, indicating a genetic link.

Professional Help For Fibromyalgia
You don't have to face the difficulties of fibromyalgia alone. Your physical therapist has therapies designed to ease pain that also helps keep you mobile. He/she can show you relaxation techniques to relieve the stress of living with a chronic and painful condition.

Physical Therapy | Reduce Fibromyalgia Pain

One of the best things you can do for yourself is obtain a neck and spinal alignment. The spine is the super highway of your body's neurological system and aligning the spine allows the body to better transmit signals between the brain and the rest of the body.

Exercise is a key ingredient of fibromyalgia treatment to maintain muscle tone, neurological health and mobility. A customized program of exercise and stretching will be developed that factors in your pain and level of ability. The program will be one that can be modified as required to meet your changing needs. Assisted exercise is an option if you've lost muscle tone and strength.

Therapeutic massage has an extensive range of benefits that include reducing pain, promoting circulation and alleviating stress. It helps with detoxification and stimulates the immune system. Depending upon your symptoms, cold and cryotherapies can be employed to alleviate pain, swelling and inflammation, along with electrical nerve stimulation or ultrasound therapy.

Aqua therapy may also play a part in your treatment. Water is soothing to the body and mind. It buoys the body, making movement easier and less painful. It offers a type of resistance training that strengthens the body.

You'll encounter many challenges managing fibromyalgia and your physical therapist will be with you ever step of the way. Together, you can keep your muscles strong and active, relieve pain and get the sleep you need, and improve your level of function for an improved lifestyle.

Heel Pain and Injury

Our promise to you.
We will never settle for "average". It is our promise to provide and advance superior physical therapy services while adding uniquely specific and related services to serve the our community and surrounding region with the utmost quality.

Easy Does It
An injury to the heel can have a variety of causes, from arthritis and heel spurs to stress fractures and tendon injuries. It's important for individuals not to overwork the heel. People who aren't accustomed to extensive running, jogging and similar activities should never attempt participation without proper preparation.

Physical therapy can prepare your feet for rigorous usage and relieve the effects of overuse. Physical therapy can help in multiple areas that include:

  • Foot or heel supports
  • Remedy gait problems
  • Reduce plain, inflammation and swelling
  • Identify mechanical dysfunction
  • Increased foot support
  • Improved flexibility
  • Build strength and endurance

Pain in the heel and bottom of the foot may be caused by micro-tears in the ligament that's responsible for supporting the arch. Any type of heel pain may develop over time and it can appear suddenly, representing an acute injury. If left untreated, heel and Achilles tendon pain worsens and can transition into a chronic condition.

Jumping Girl

Heel Pain and Injury: The Physical Therapy Solution
The feet bear the weight of the body upon them, but the heel of the foot receives little thought unless it begins to hurt. Pain can originate under the heel (plantar fasciitis) or the back of the heel in the Achilles tendon. Inflammation, swelling and pain are common complaints associated with the heel.

An injury to any part of the heel can be extremely painful, producing inflammation and swelling. Individuals may have difficulty flexing their foot up or down, standing on their toes, or even walking. A heel injury may also result in a tingling sensation indicating the need for immediate medical care that will often require rehabilitation with a physical therapist.

Everyone has an occasional pain in the heel after extensive walking, jogging or sports activities and it typically disappears within a day or so with rest. Heel pain that interferes in standing, walking, or lasts a week or more can be helped with physical therapy.

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain resulting from running and jogging, obesity, and excessive standing. Pain may be present when people take their first few steps in the morning or after sitting down for an extended period of sitting.

Jumping Girl

Treat The Pain with Physical Therapy
Your physical therapist can help you reduce the risk of injuring your heel with specific stretches, exercises and warm-ups that will prepare your foot for action. He/she can help you choose the right shoes for specific activities. Footwear varies widely and a shoe that's appropriate for power walking won't be appropriate for jogging or running a marathon.

Many people have developed mechanical dysfunction in their gait that leads to improper foot placement. Your physical therapist can examine your gait while walking, jogging and running to determine if retraining or realignment is necessary. He/she can help if arthritis or chronic conditions are involved.

Orthotic devices can be prescribed to ease pain and distribute weight more evenly for comfort. If you're overweight or your employment requires extensive time in a standing position, your physical therapist can recommend accommodations and ergonomic solutions to relieve stress on the entire foot and the rest of the body.

Manual manipulation may be employed to improve flexibility and mobility. If heel pain is caused by a weakness in the lower leg, hip or core, you'll have access to technologically advanced methods to strengthen those areas and improve endurance. Pain in the heel can originate in the back and spinal adjustments are effective for relieving pain in any part of the body.

Therapeutic massage and electro-stimulation may be used to loosen tight muscles in the calf and foot, relieve pain, and reduce inflammation and swelling. Braces and assistive devices can be obtained to provide support. Your physical therapist may also use dry needling, acupuncture, and joint mobilization to treat and reduce the risk of injury.

You don't have to be a world-class athlete or compete in marathons to experience pain in your heel. It can result from an incorrect step, being overweight, or participating in active endeavors without the proper warm-up. No matter what the source, your physical therapist can help with preventative measures and treatment if an injury has already occurred.

Physical Therapy for Patients with Lupus

Help for Lupus Patients

Physical therapy is an important part of treating the symptoms of lupus. It offers an effective way of dealing with the disease that has multiple benefits that include:

Help for Lupus Patients

  • Pain relief
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Improved mobility
  • Restores physical functionality
  • Strengthens bones, tendons and ligaments
  • Maintains cardiac function
  • Prevents weight gain
  • Improves sleep
  • Limits or prevents permanent disability

The physical therapist will test and measure a variety of functions before developing a customized treatment plan. He/she will examine motor function and range of motion, strength and muscle performance, respiration and posture, along with balance, coordination and endurance.

Physical Therapy for Patients with Lupus

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease marked by inflammation in which the immune system attacks healthy tissue, along with bacteria and viruses. It affects all parts of the body, including skin, joints and organs. People with lupus go through cycles of remission and flare-ups in which symptoms worsen.

The disease is most often seen in women, but men and children can also have the condition. It's not contagious, but it does make individuals more susceptible to illnesses and infections. People can have lupus for a significant length of time without knowing and diagnosing the disease is difficult as it mimics other conditions.

Lupus affects all areas of the body, but takes a particular toll on the brain and central nervous system, blood vessels and blood, lungs, heart and kidneys. One early symptom for some patients is a "butterfly" rash that appears across the cheeks. No two cases act the same, but all patients report joint stiffness, swelling and pain.

Skin lesions may appear, along with headaches, confusion and memory loss. Chest pain, dry eyes and shortness of breath, along with fever and fatigue are common. Lupus patients experience whitening or bluing of the fingers and toes when they're exposed to cold temperatures and during stressful periods in their life.

There's no cure for lupus and some people seem to have a predisposition for developing the disease. The onset of the disease and symptoms thereafter can be triggered by a diverse range of factors ranging from medication to sunlight.

A Holistic Approach To Lupus

Help for Lupus Patients

Your physical therapy will have a holistic approach to mitigate the symptoms of your disease and work toward the prevention of disability. A specialized exercise program will be developed that speaks to your level of function, mobility, pain and fitness level.

Multiple methods are available that may include clinical Pilates, yoga and manual manipulation if you have difficulty participating in exercise on your own. Ultrasound and electrical stimulation may be employed to reduce swelling and relieve pain.

Aqua therapy is particularly beneficial and soothing for lupus. Water buoys the body, allowing you to move easier and with less resistance from gravity and weight. You'll feel approximately one-third lighter than your actual weight when supported by water, which can act as a form of mild resistance and endurance training for sore, painful and inflamed joints.

Therapeutic massage has a range of benefits for your lupus symptoms. It improves circulation, helps detoxify the body, and relieves pain. It's effective for relieving the stress of living with a chronic disease, while enhancing flexibility, range of motion and mobility.

The exercise program will help you feel less fatigued and improve the functioning of blood vessels. If your lupus symptoms are severe, your physical therapist can help with assistive aids for mobility ranging from canes and crutches to walkers, wheelchairs and motorized conveyances.

Your physical therapist has a wide array of therapies and treatments to ease your pain and address the many symptoms of lupus. Physical therapy provides a path to less pain, better mobility, and improved quality of life.

Getting Physical With Tech

The popular names of the injuries may change, but the established treatments of physical therapy can treat, correct and heal all the injuries that technology engenders. Physical therapy treatments are effective for:

  • Relieving pain
  • Aligning the spine and neck
  • Improving posture
  • Relaxing tensed muscles
  • Relieving pressure on the neurological system
  • Addressing migraines and TMJ pain
  • Avoiding surgery

The flashing lights and movements of video games can also produce seizures in those who are susceptible. It's known as photosensitive epilepsy and can occur when people are exposed to the flickering, bright lights and movement patterns of video games. Strobe lights at clubs and the lights of emergency vehicles can also trigger an episode.

Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is occurring in people who use computers more than two hours per day, resulting in headaches, dry eyes and blurred vision. People who play video games designed to encourage people to exercise and dance are experiencing strains and sprains from the unaccustomed movements.

Physical Therapy and Technology Related Injury

Technology Related Injury | Neck Pain
Technology has provided new medical treatments, ways to communicate, and entertainment options, but it's also taking a toll on the bodies of those who use it. Squinting at small screens, selfie-induced tennis elbow, and sitting hunched over computer keyboards, tablets, and video game systems are just some of the ways in which people are causing injury to themselves.

An increasing number of people are seeking physical therapy to relieve pain, tension and injuries involving the neck, shoulder and back, along with stress-related conditions that include migraines and TMJ pain.

Problems with the spine, wrists and palms of the hand are common among those who spend an excessive amount of time playing video games, using computers and talking on cell phones. "Trigger thumb" is the result of tightly gripping video game controllers and smartphones.

Carpal tunnel and repetitive motion injuries are occurring in individuals who text (texting thumb), use keyboards, play video games and take a lot of selfies (selfie elbow). It causes injury to muscles, nerves and tendons that produce pain, tingling and numbness.

Individuals who spend a lot of time on their cellphones or who are sensitive to electromagnetic fields are experiencing tinnitus, a persistent ringing in the ear. On the opposite end of the spectrum are people who wear headphones to block out noise pollution, only to suffer injuries from walking into traffic.

Physical Therapy To The Rescue

Physical Therapy to the Rescue
One of the best ways you can pamper yourself is with a neck and spinal alignment. Your physical therapist will make adjustments that place the spine in the correct position to relieve pressure on soft tissues and the neurological system.

Exercise may seem counter-productive for a body that's already in pain, but your physical therapist can create a custom program of exercises that will help reduce the risk of injuries. If an injury has already occurred, your physical therapist can provide treatment to relieve pain and help you heal.

Heat, cryotherapies, electro-stimulation, and therapeutic massage are effective for reducing swelling, inflammation and pain from a wide range of tech-related injuries. Acupuncture and dry needling may also be employed and the therapies have the advantage of being equally applicable for multiple areas of the body.

If you find yourself tensing up while talking on the phone, playing video games, or using your computer or phone, you may be among the thousands of people that suffer from migraines and TMJ pain. Clenching the teeth places pressure on the jaw joint that can lead to pain and nerve impairment, conditions that can be remedied with physical therapy.

Your physical therapist can provide suggestions and recommendations on adaptive aids and ergonomic accommodations at home and work to mitigate the risk of injury and pain. If you're suffering with carpal tunnel syndrome, your therapist can relieve the pain or numbness and restore normal use of your hand, wrist and arm without the need for surgery.

Physical therapy is beneficial for helping reduce the risk of sustaining an injury from a tech-related source and healing any existing injury you may already have incurred. Technology is a fact of life, but there's no reason to live with the pain of using it when relief is so easily available.