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Physical Therapy Isn’t Just For Pain. It Can Keep You Healthy For Life.

Physical Therapy Isn’t Just For Pain. It Can Keep You Healthy For Life.

You know that physical activity is good for you. The benefits are well researched, and the list is impressive.

Here’s just a sampling:

  • Releases endorphins to make you feel good and fight depression
  • Helps control weight
  • Prevents diseases like stroke, diabetes, and some forms of cancer
  • Improves sleep
  • Helps you live longer

Recent studies even show that physical activity strengthens your immune system, with a protective effect against COVID, and that staying active through middle age protects your brain as you age.

Physical activity is a wonder drug. If it was a pill, you’d buy it and take it every day. But even though activity is free, less than 25% of Americans meet the CDC recommendations for activity. We clearly need help.

 

Exercise shields from disease

Physical Therapists Are the Experts in Human Movement

To be active, you need to be able to move. Physical Therapists do more than help you recover from surgeries or major injuries. They are the experts in human movement. Sure, you could see a strength coach to lift weights, hire a personal trainer, go to a yoga class to work on your flexibility and balance, and see a chiropractor for adjustments. But that seems like a lot of people when a PT can help you with all these things and more. Nobody knows more about human movement or looks at your health the same way a PT does. Your PT can help you with every aspect of movement including strength, range of motion, flexibility, endurance, balance, and coordination.

As medical professionals they can help you with injuries or other issues. Your PT can work with your doctor to help use activity to manage things like diabetes, cholesterol levels or blood pressure instead of prescriptions. Your PT is also trained to work with people of all ages, so you can develop a long-term relationship and they can continue to adjust and modify your routine as you age or your goals change.

People need PT to stay healthy

Stay Healthy for Life

Staying active has a long list of benefits both now and in the future. But chances are you’re not moving enough to make the most of those benefits. Most people need help. Physical therapists are the most qualified professional in existence to help keep you healthy now and in the future. So don’t think of your PT as someone you see when you need help with pain or an injury. Think of them as your partner and coach working to help you stay healthy for life.

Movement is the key to the healthier future

lET US HELP YOU GET AND STAY HEALTHY

Schedule your PT Appointment now.

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Holidays an Ideal Time for a Refresher on Proper Lifting

Holidays an Ideal Time for a Refresher on Proper Lifting

Digging out boxes of holiday decorations, hauling packages to and from the car, hiding gifts away on the higher shelves at the back of your closet … the Holiday Season certainly requires its fair share of bending, lifting and reaching. This, coupled with the cooler weather, makes December the ideal time for a refresher on proper lifting methods. 

Back pain, after all, can put a real damper on the Holiday Season. 

As one of the most common conditions treated by physical therapists, back pain and injury will even about 80 percent of all Americans at some point in their lives, making it one of the top causes of disability in the U.S. Fortunately, it’s a condition that’s preventable, and one of the ways of doing this is to learn proper lifting techniques. 

But, preventing back pain isn’t the only concern when we talk about proper lifting. Using the proper techniques for lifting and carrying awkward and/or heavy objects is about minimizing strain on the entire body. 

The goal, in other words, is to put yourself in a position that allows the body’s musculoskeletal system to work as one cohesive unit, without putting too much strain on one area, such as the lower-back or shoulders. 

So without further ado, strongly consider the following tips for proper lifting during this Holiday Season … and throughout your lifetime: 

Warm Up: 

Don’t ever assume your body’s ready to lift heavy objects without first being thoroughly warmed up. Take the time to stretch you lower back as well as your legs and hips. Also, do a few jumping jacks to get the blood flowing to the muscles in your body. 

Get Close 

Avoid reaching for a heavy or moderate-sized load. Get up nice and close to the box or object to minimize the force (in the arms, shoulders and back) needed to lift, and always hold it close to your body. 

Bend & Lift with the Knees 

We’ve all heard this before, and it’s true. But in doing so, keep your back straight and your body upright as you lower yourself to the object in question, then use your legs to rise back up. 

Get a Grip 

This seems to go without saying, but if you can’t get a strong, comfortable grip on the object in front of you – even if you know you can carry the weight – don’t try to be a hero. Find someone to help you or an alternative way of getting the object from A to B, such as a hand cart or dolly. 

Reverse the Steps 

When you get to where you’re going, set the item down just as you picked it up – but in reverse. Keep it close to the body, lower with the legs and move slowly and deliberately. You can just as easily injure yourself setting objects down as you can picking them up. 

In addition, keep from twisting or reaching while lifting and/or carrying a load. Don’t rush through the process of lifting, and if you’re tired, put the work off until later 

And finally, if you do feel pain during or after lifting, or you have an injury or condition you feel is holding you back from moving properly, visit a physical therapist for a full assessment prior to trying any sort of heavy or awkward lifting. 

Physical Therapists Adapt to Keep Clinics Safe

Physical Therapists Adapt to Keep Clinics Safe

While the coronavirus pandemic continues to be front and center in the news and in the thoughts of many people, other health issues have not gone away. People are still getting back and neck pain, overuse injuries and hurt while at work. Many of these people would benefit from seeing a physical therapist, but some of them are reluctant because of concerns over COVID-19. That’s understandable, PT clinics are busy places, with lots of people coming and going, right? They used to be, but things are different now. Just like every other business and public place, PT clinics have made changes to allow them to continue to serve patients while keeping both patients and staff safe. Here are some common changes clinics have made to reduce the risk of COVID spreading among patients and staff.

How would you like to schedule your next PT appointment?

Online PT

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In Person PT

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Scheduling and patient flow

  • Clinics have reduced the total number of people they see each day to allow for social distancing in the clinic
  • Many clinics are using a staggered schedule to avoid people coming in at the same time
  • Many clinics have implemented a “virtual waiting room” having people wait in their car and notifying them when their clinician is ready via a phone call or text message
  • When possible, clinics may be using separate entry and exit points

How would you like to schedule your next PT appointment?

Online PT

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In Person PT

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Treatment

  • Clinics may be screening patients and staff as they enter the building using questions, temperature checks, or other means
  • Clinics may have designated areas for each clinician and their patients to reduce contact between different groups of people
  • Equipment will likely be spaced out further than you’re used to and there may be less of it to allow for more distancing between patients
  • Many clinics are leaning more heavily on telehealth when appropriate for patients to reduce the number of patients physically present in the clinic

How would you like to schedule your next PT appointment?

Online PT

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In Person PT

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Physical therapists are medical professionals who were trained to deal with infectious diseases and keep people safe long before COVID-19 existed. By making changes throughout their workflows and patient experiences, physical therapy practices have reduced the risk of spreading COVID among their staff and patient populations, while continuing to deliver needed services to the public. If you are in need of PT treatment, but are hesitant to go into the clinic, give your PT a call and talk about what policies and procedures they have in place. To reduce or eliminate going into the clinic, ask about using telehealth either exclusively or in combination with in-person treatment. This is a time of uncertainty, but people are reacting with flexibility and creativity. Don’t let concerns over COVID keep you in pain or from the treatment you need.

At Active Kare Physical Therapy we take all the safety precautions to keep our staff and our patients safe and provide our patients excellent treatment.

How would you like to schedule your next PT appointment?

Online PT

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In Person PT

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If you still have any question, call us at (248)432-1618

Active Kare Physical Therapy in Sterling Heights, Michigan

 ...Get Back Your Active Life

Why You Need a Physical Therapist on Your Healthcare Team

Why You Need a Physical Therapist on Your Healthcare Team

With health in sharp focus as a result of the pandemic, now may be a good time to look at the team of experts you have in place and see if there are any improvements you could make. You probably have a family doctor, dentist, and optometrist. Maybe you have some specialist physicians, a trainer, or a massage therapist. If a physical therapist isn’t a part of your healthcare team, you’re missing out on taking care of a big part of your health. To understand why you need a physical therapist, you need to understand what they do.

Physical Therapists Help You Do Things

The American Physical Therapy Association defines PTs as “health care professionals who diagnose and treat individuals who have medical problems or other health-related conditions that limit their abilities to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives.” So physical therapists help you do things that you have trouble with. That could be going for a hike, playing with your kids, or getting through a day of work without pain.

Physical Therapists Reduce Pain

Chronic pain is a huge problem worldwide. A big part of that is low back pain. Statistically, around 80% of people will have low back pain in their lifetimes. Physical therapists are trained to treat pain without surgery or medications. If you have back pain, an arthritic knee, neck pain, or an old injury that won’t go away, a PT may be able to help.

Physical Therapists Keep You Healthy

The APTA goes on to say that “PTs work with individuals to prevent the loss of mobility before it occurs by developing fitness- and wellness-oriented programs for healthier and more active lifestyles.” That means that a physical therapist can help you determine your risk for injury, choose the right fitness program, and improve the quality of your life by improving your health and ability to move.

Physical Therapists Can Help You Live Longer

It’s well known that the risk of many of the leading causes of death can be reduced by exercise. Some of these conditions would include heart disease, cancer, lung disease, diabetes, and stroke. By helping you move better with less pain, finding the right exercise program, and helping you to make healthy lifestyle choices, a PT could help you live longer.

 

Physical therapists have a unique set of skills and expertise that can do a lot to improve your health and quality of life. If you don’t have one, consider adding one to your healthcare team.

Your Physical Therapist Can Help You Keep Your Resolution

Your Physical Therapist Can Help You Keep Your Resolution

Get More Active & Avoid Injuries. Talk to Your PTs How

As the year comes to an end, people begin to set goals and make resolutions. Losing weight & getting into “better shape” are all common. These all require increasing your amount of physical activity. More activity is great for your health, energy levels, sleep, and mood. However, ramping up your activity level too quickly after a holiday season of eating, drinking and being merry can lead to pain, injury and disappointment if your body isn’t ready for it.

Your physical therapist is an expert in human movement, and can help you safely reach your fitness goals. People think of PTs as the person to see after an injury, but a visit before you change your activity level could prevent injury in the first place. An evaluation by your PT will include assessment of your strength, range of motion, and functional movement patterns – think jumping, running, squatting, carrying. Some PTs even like to use a standardized assessment, such as the Functional Movement Screen .

Most common injuries from new fitness routines are caused by underlying weakness, range of motion deficits, or compensatory movement patterns. Your PT will find these during your assessment. They can then prescribe exercises or movements to address the issues found and get you safely moving into the new year!

The other common way people get injured working towards their resolution is with overtraining, or doing too much too soon. Physical therapists are also experts in exercise prescription and program design. Your PT can help you create a routine specific to your needs and goals that will progress appropriately and keep you out of trouble.

So stop only thinking of your PT after you’re injured. In this case, it’s true that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Seeing your physical therapist before you start on your resolution can keep you on track, injury free, and help you reach your goals for the new year!

So, get in touch with your physical therapist today and start discussing about your fitness goals and how injuries can be prevented.

We are located in Sterling Heights and we would love to be a part of your fitness journey this coming new year. Call us at 248-432-1618 and schedule your discovery visit and ask for a Functional Movement Screen .

5 Holiday Giving Options Offering Healthful Returns

5 Holiday Giving Options Offering Healthful Returns

The Holiday Season is a time for giving, and that includes supporting causes and organizations that make our communities stronger.

It’s in this spirit that we share some holiday giving suggestions that offer a more healthful return than simply writing a check.

After all, as physical therapists, it’s our goal to improve lives and the community by helping people move better and live healthier, more active lives.

It’s based on this that we thought to offer some ideas for how people can give back to their communities while, at the same time, also benefiting from various levels of physical activity.

Increase Joy, Reduce Stress

Such an approach to holiday giving isn’t just about contributing to one’s 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity per week, as recommended by the Department of Health and Human Services.

The holidays are a pretty stressful time for a lot of people, and exercise is a proven way to reduce stress and anxiety while improving overall happiness. It just so happens giving and volunteering provide similar health benefits.

Put them together, and you’re likely to experience a more joyful and relaxing holiday season.”

With this in mind, consider following five ways to give back and be fit this Holiday Season:

Volunteer ‘Sweat Equity’

There are lots of ways to volunteer during the holidays, and many involve various levels of physical activity.

Collecting gift donations for a local children’s charity, for instance, or helping sort and deliver food donations for a food pantry, requires time, muscle and (if it’s a charitable year) good endurance.

Do a Charity Fun Run

Running continues to grow in popularity, and so do charity fun runs – even during the colder months of the year.

Registration for these runs typically goes to local charities, and some allow for added individual or team fundraising so you can maximize your donation.

Check your local event calendar for options.

Lend a Neighbor a Hand

Most of us have neighbors who could use a helping hand on occasion, be they elderly, disabled, alone, or short on time or money.

The holidays are a great time to check in with them and see if they could use some help with physical tasks like yard work, clearing the driveway of snow or ice, putting out Christmas decorations, or even childcare.

Walk Your Best Friends

Are animals your passion? Perfect! Animals need exercise just like people do, and most animal shelters welcome volunteers eager to play with and walk the dogs and cats.

Not only is walking great exercise for both people and pets, but spending time with animals can also lower stress and blood pressure.

Arm Your Smartphone

If the interpersonal aspect of volunteering doesn’t quite fit your personality, you still have options.

Some smartphone apps exist (Charity Miles is the most prominent) that allow you to convert workout miles and/or daily activity into donations to reputable nonprofit organizations.

Of course, if one or more of these ideas sound appealing, but discomfort, pain or a movement limitation is holding you back from giving back in this way, come by the physical therapy clinic.

At our clinic, we can assess the issue and put you on a path toward being more active – both physically and as a contributor to your community.