5 Ways Physiotherapy Can Help You Avoid Risky Treatment Methods

Have you been suffering from chronic pain, or pain lasting longer than three months? If so, you are not alone. According to the American Academy of Pain Medicine, at least 100 million Americans are living with chronic pain. Because of this, there has been a larger and larger demand for prescription pain medications within recent years. To put this in perspective, in the year 2013 alone, physicians prescribed nearly a quarter of a billion opioid prescriptions. That equates to about one bottle per person living in America! This rising demand for pain medications has led to the opioid crisis we face today, due to the excessive abuse and overdose of the drug. Opioids contain dangerous and addictive chemicals that many people have unfortunately fallen victim to.

In response to this public health epidemic, many people have been searching for safer pain relief strategies. Luckily, physiotherapy has been a successful solution. Whether your pain is acute or chronic, a physiotherapist can help you get back to your normal life through natural and non-invasive treatments, without the need for potentially dangerous drugs.

How does physiotherapy relieve pain?

Physiotherapists are highly experienced in the fields of movement and dysfunction. With their knowledge, they are able to provide a combination of passive and active therapy treatments that are aimed at relieving pain due to injury or another condition. They are able to do this in several ways, including:

1. Providing techniques and services that have been studied and supported by scientific research.

Rigorous study and strong research are just two of the many ways that the successes of physiotherapy have been proven. These studies have provided credible evidence toward physiotherapy treatments, illustrating how they can significantly reduce a vast number of pain-related conditions. The implementation of care backed by scientific research allows physiotherapists to greatly improve their patient outcomes.

2. Using a series of techniques that have little-to-no side effects.

Some common treatments that physiotherapists provide include massage, ultrasound, joint mobilization, electrical nerve stimulation, and diathermy. These are all natural treatments that have a very low risk of side effects, especially when compared to other methods of pain relief, such as surgery and medication.

3. Addressing pain at its root.

Part of the reason why physiotherapy is so successful is because it gets to the base of the problem in order to alleviate pain completely, rather than just masking the issue. Pills may be easier to pop in your mouth for pain relief, but their success is short-lived. The effects of many medications only last for 12-24 hours, meaning you’ll have to continually pop pills if you want to maintain your relief. Essentially, it masks the pain but doesn’t fix the problem.

Fortunately, physiotherapy does. Your physiotherapist will perform a thorough evaluation at your initial appointment, in order to determine where the pain is stemming from and what the best treatments for it will be. Physiotherapy gets to the root of the problem in order to provide long-term relief, whereas medication only works in the short-term.

4. Implementing individualized exercise programs for your needs.

In addition to your passive treatments, your physiotherapist will create an active exercise plan for you that is specifically tailored to your recovery process. Physical activity can help in reducing your pain significantly, in addition to reducing swelling, improving range of motion, promoting healing, and increasing overall strength and endurance.

5. Increasing your activity.

Participating in physiotherapy is an engaging process that can inspire you to take a more active role in your pain management. Physiotherapy sessions last anywhere from 30-60 minutes, allowing you to work closely with your therapist to achieve your goals. At the end of the day, physiotherapy is the only natural, risk-free, and active method of pain relief, providing long-lasting effects.

If you or a loved one are currently dealing with pain, contact BeActive Oakville today. We would be happy to schedule a consultation with one of our physiotherapists to discuss how they can help you get back to a normal, active, and pain-free life!




Discover How You Can Become Healthier, Stronger, and More Active With Physiotherapy

A healthy, strong, and active lifestyle is what everyone strives for. However, it is not always easy to obtain, especially for those suffering from chronic pain. The very thought of going out and exercising with your aches and pains may leave you feeling uncomfortable. However, there is fortunately a simpler solution to gaining the active lifestyle you desire. Physiotherapy can help you achieve optimum levels of health and fitness, all while reducing your pain. If you are looking for a healthier, stronger, and more active lifestyle, contact BeActive Physiotherapy & Wellness today!

How do I begin?

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle takes work, but once you get into the groove of it, it becomes much easier. For example, eating nutritious foods is one of the easiest ways to improve your health (although we know those sweets are hard to kick.) Physical activity is the hardest aspect to get in the habit of doing, especially if you are being held back by chronic pain. Some people try to mask their symptoms with anti-inflammatory or pain-relieving medications, while others unfortunately give up on the idea of being active all together. Luckily, there is an alternative option: physiotherapy.  With the help of a physiotherapist, it is possible to reclaim your pain-free, healthy lifestyle, and get back to doing the activities you love.

What exactly is physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy is generally comprised of three important phases: pain relief, strengthening, and functional integration. Some people are apprehensive toward physiotherapy because they believe it will hurt them; however, the opposite is usually true. Physiotherapy is aimed at pain relief and strengthening, and your physiotherapist will make sure that your treatment plan won’t bring you any pain or discomfort. This is achieved through several treatment services, such as ice and heat therapies, stretching, bracing, and ultrasound.

An active lifestyle is also dependent upon movement. Your physiotherapist will cater your treatment plan around specific movements designed to increase your strength, flexibility, balance, and overall mobility. He or she will assist you with many of these exercises, but will also provide some simple ones that can be done at home.

The end result of physiotherapy is living the life you want, free from painful limitations. That can only happen when you apply the concepts you learn from your treatments to the outside world. Your physiotherapist is as dedicated as you are, and will encourage you to achieve all the goals you set forth in the beginning.

How will physiotherapy help me?

The purpose of physiotherapy remains the same, no matter what you are seeking its services for. Perhaps you are still suffering from the lingering pain of an injury. Perhaps you are recovering from a surgery and trying to get your range of motion back. Perhaps your joints simply aren’t what they used to be, and you are looking for relief. Whatever the case may be, physiotherapists are dedicated to relieving your pain and getting you back to your peak level of physical health.

A physiotherapist is a movement specialist, educated in analyzing mobility issues with walking, running, jumping, bending, stretching, and almost every other form of physical activity. Your physiotherapist can pinpoint problem areas and create a customized treatment plan aimed at improving those areas. Through in-office sessions and at-home exercises, patients strengthen their muscles and joints, improve their balance, build endurance, and experience pain relief, all without the unwanted harmful risks of drugs or surgery.

What should I expect?

Everyone has different needs based on the conditions of their bodies. There is no cookie-cutter approach to health and wellness, as one treatment plan may not work the same for one person as it would for another. Your physiotherapist will work closely with you to evaluate your mobility, balance, range of motion, and severity of pain. Your physical goals will also be taken into account when creating your treatment plan, as well as any health risks that may be holding you back. At your initial evaluation, you may be asked to perform basic movements, such as sitting down, standing up, walking, lifting, stretching, or other motions. Once your physiotherapist has a clear picture of what you need, he or she will begin constructing a treatment plan to help relieve your pain and achieve your goals.

In the end, an active lifestyle is more than possible, even if you struggle with chronic pain. If you are looking to improve your health, strength, and physical activity, look no further – we are here to help. Contact our Oakville, ON office today and get started on your journey toward better health and wellness!




The 5 Simple Steps to Relieving Pain and Increasing Energy

Pain can be extremely limiting, as it can hold you back from many of the physical activities you’d like to do. However, there are luckily some quick and effective ways to relieve your pain and increase your energy, so you can get back to doing the physical activities you love. By incorporating physiotherapy into your physical routine, you can achieve your goals as fast and painlessly as you’ve always dreamed! Call BeActive Physiotherapy & Wellness today to find out more about how our physiotherapy services can help you.

1. Eat the right foods.

The food you eat is what fuels you throughout the day. Certain foods can provide you with more energy, in addition to relieving the pain you feel. A few of these include:

  • Salmon. Salmon provides omega-3 fatty acids, which help to relieve neck, back, and joint pain.
  • Ginger. The ginger plant has been known to relieve pain from migraines, as well as muscle aches and nausea. It is typically used as a spice and can be easily sprinkled into a meal.
  • Cherries. Cherries increase antioxidants, which can relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Hot peppers. This spicy treat has been known to relieve arthritis pain. Even if you aren’t a fan of the spice, a serving as small as half a teaspoon could help bring some relief.

2. Look at what you’re sleeping on.

Did you know that approximately ⅓ of your life is spent sleeping? Because of this, it is important to make sure that your mattress is right for you. The mattress you sleep on can affect the way your body feels when it’s awake. Since everyone sleeps differently, it is recommended that you choose a mattress according to your sleep style:

  • Soft mattress. Side sleepers generally benefit from a softer mattress, as it is easier on their sides.
  • Firm mattress. If you sleep on your back, a medium-to-firm mattress will help with those backaches.
  • Memory foam. If you toss and turn all night, or if you switch positions repeatedly, you may want to try out memory foam. It may help you stay in one place, as it forms to the shape of your body.

3. Boost your endorphins.

When you exercise, your body releases feel-good chemicals called endorphins, which act as natural pain relievers. It may seem difficult to exercise when you are experiencing aches and pains, but even light movement can provide much-needed relief. You can also boost your endorphins by sniffing a soothing lavender scent, listening to your favorite music, or even eating chocolate. Win/win!

4. Minimize your stress.

While we are aware of the mental toll that stress can take on us, it can also exaggerate physical pain as well. Because of this, it is important to keep some stress-relieving techniques at the back of your mind for when you need them. A warm bath is a great way to simultaneously relieve stress and soothe any aching muscles or joints. Breathing techniques can also help you relax by calming your mind and body. A simple way to do this is to take in two or three deep breaths, releasing them slowly through your nose every time.

5. Visit your physiotherapist.

There are several advanced methods that trained physiotherapists can provide for you, in order to relieve your pain and increase your energy. These physiotherapy treatments address pain at its source, providing long-lasting relief. Some of the specific treatments that a physiotherapist might use include:

  • Ice and heat therapies. Heat works to warm the muscles and tendons, making movement easier and less painful. Ice works to reduce inflammation, also providing soothing pain relief.
  • Massage therapy. A physiotherapist is highly educated on painful areas of the body. Through massage, he or she can manipulate your painful muscles and joints, thus reducing inflammation and providing relief.
  • Ultrasound. Ultrasound produces sound waves that can assist in blocking pain signals to the brain.
  • Aquatic therapy. Water can stimulate nerves and provide resistance for exercise and strength training. It allows for easier movement, which can ease the stress on your body.

These simple steps can greatly enhance your daily routine by reducing your pain and increasing your energy level. If you are interested in learning more information about how you can improve your daily life and find long-lasting pain relief, contact our Oakville, ON office today! We’ll help you get to your best level of physical function.




7 Secrets Toward Motivating Yourself to be Active

For many of us, staying in shape can turn into an “all-or-nothing” attitude. Maybe we had a long day at work, or maybe we have to drive our kids to their extracurricular activities, or maybe it’s dark and cold and we simply don’t want to put in the effort. These are common excuses, and we all feel them. By the time you get home from work, it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day to work out, on top of everything else you have to do. However, there are some simple tips you can add into your daily lifestyle that can allow for more physical activity, without having to hit the gym!

1. Take the longer and more difficult route.

We generally try to get from one point to another in the quickest way possible. We take elevators, we park close to entrances, we enter and exit the doors nearest to us… But other than saving time, this doesn’t add any long-term value. Try making it a habit to take the stairs at work or to park at the back of your grocery store’s parking lot. These simple acts can add significantly more physical activity to your daily life.

2. Get your steps in during lunch.

We all get a lunch break, and we can easily use that time to make healthy decisions. Instead of eating at the office cafeteria, walk down the street to order food (and make sure to get something healthy!) Or, you can use your entire lunch break to take a walk or go to the gym. By opting to do this, you can bring a bagged lunch and eat at your desk either before or after your exercise. This will give you a designated period of time every day for physical activity.

3. Invest in a standing desk.

This may be one of the easiest ways to get exercise – simply by standing in place! While it may not seem like much, standing is significantly healthier than sitting. You burn more calories by standing, and it is incredibly helpful to your posture as it decreases the ability to slouch or hunch over. It also helps in keeping blood sugar steady after a meal, and it encourages more movement overall.

4. Trick yourself into getting up more often.

Ideally, we’re supposed to get up and move around every 30-60 minutes throughout the day to initiate stronger blood flow, and to allow our bodies to stretch and warm up. But how many of us actually do that? (The answer – not many.) However, you can achieve this by tricking yourself into getting up more often. Maybe you use a smaller glass for your water than usual, so you have to get up and go to the sink every time you finish it. Or, maybe you make a trip to the copy room every time you have to use a stapler or hole puncher, instead of keeping your own on your desk. By ridding yourself of these small “conveniencies” that we create for ourselves, you’ll be able to get up and move around much more than you would otherwise.

5. Do chores every day.

By doing chores for 20 or 30 minutes a day, organizational experts believe you can achieve a cleaner and healthier lifestyle. In addition, you can also get a bit of a workout in! Vacuuming, doing dishes, taking out the trash, and doing laundry all demand physical activity. By taking time out of the day to do chores around the house, you’ll be able to get exercise AND do the tidying up that you’ve been putting off. Win/win!

6. Keep your equipment in sight.

Keep workout equipment in an easy-to-see view around the house. Lay your yoga mat out in front of the TV. Keep your 5-pound weights on the side of the desk. By keeping your equipment in sight, it’ll increase the probability of you using them (because let’s face it, who’s going to rummage through their hall closet to find their yoga mat at the end of the day?) Make it a habit of working out around the house while doing your daily activities, such as watching the news, cooking dinner, or even sitting at your computer.

7. Don’t procrastinate getting physiotherapy treatments.

Physiotherapy is helpful in addressing the aches and pains that may keep you from pursuing your active lifestyle. Many physiotherapy sessions are also workouts in themselves, meaning that you’ll be getting physical activity by attending your treatments. Your physiotherapist can also be used as a great resource when looking for advice on remaining active and adding more exercise into your daily habits. If chronic pain is an issue, your physiotherapist can show you specific moves that streamline the physical challenges.

If you have pain that’s keeping you from maintaining an active lifestyle give our office a call today. We’ll be happy to discuss how physiotherapy can help you live a pain-free and more active life.


Eating Right: A Simple Technique for Reducing Pain and Inflammation

Do you deal with chronic pain or inflammation in your daily life? It isn’t uncommon, but it is avoidable. While exercise is a crucial part of your physiotherapy regimen, proper nutrition can also play an important role. The foods you eat work to fuel your body, and eating the right ones can help you recover much quicker from painful or uncomfortable conditions. Exercising regularly, reducing your stress intake, and keeping a strict nutritional diet all work together to help limit and alleviate your pain and inflammation. For more information on how nutrition can help you, contact BeActive Physiotherapy to schedule a consultation with one of our physiotherapists.

Why we experience inflammation:

Your immune system can naturally respond to injury, ailment, or other harm through inflammation. If you have an infection, wound, tissue damage, or buildup of toxins in your body, the immune response is triggered to deal with it. Without inflammation, injuries wouldn’t be able to heal; however, if this process goes on for too long, chronic inflammation can occur. This can lead to serious health conditions, such as arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, or even some cancers. If you experience persistent pain, it is wise to contact a physiotherapist as soon as possible, as it may mean that the inflammation has become chronic.

Traditionally, chronic inflammation has been treated through strict rest and medication. However, a lack of exercise can actually make inflammation worse, as it constricts joints and causes muscles to stiffen. Additionally, medications come with a whole slew of side effects, some of which can be dangerous and/or habit-forming. Luckily, pain and inflammation can be treated in much easier and healthier ways – such as diet.

Beat inflammation with a nutritional diet!

Nutritionists have had patients report great success in turning around their symptoms by adopting an anti-inflammatory diet. Inflammation is your body’s way of trying to heal, which can be accelerated through a nutritional diet that complements the removal of toxins.

The three basic components of an anti-inflammatory diet are:

  • Lots of veggies!

Raw broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and cabbage are the best options when sustaining an anti-inflammatory diet. They can be cooked if you prefer, but raw vegetables are generally better for speeding up the inflammation process. You’ll want to eat up to nine servings per day, and you can substitute fruits for a couple of those servings to break it up, if it becomes too much. Otherwise, the timeless saying “eat your veggies,” is key.

  • Take it easy on grains and dairy.

In order to strengthen your body’s immune response, you’ll want to avoid simple carbs and sugars. Unfortunately, that means no donuts, no pastries, and no white breads. Dairy products should also be extremely limited, so very little cheese or milk with anything. Whole grains, such as barley, oats, brown rice, and wheat are best.

  • Avoid red meat altogether.

It is best to avoid red meat while participating in an anti-inflammatory diet. If this proves difficult, red meat is okay in small doses; however, it should be an extremely rare treat in your diet. The proteins in red meat require extra work from your kidneys to process, so it will slow down the healing process if you eat a lot of it. One small piece of steak, one time per week, should be your maximum limit. Luckily, chicken and fish are just fine for an anti-inflammatory diet. Enjoy them with all of those servings of vegetables!

More helpful tips:

If you stick to the diet listed above, you should see your pain and inflammation symptoms start to reduce very quickly. In addition to a nutritional diet, you can also help fight inflammation through:

  • Weight loss: If you have some unwanted weight, getting down to your ideal body weight will help with your pain and inflammation.
  • Stress management:  If you’re feeling mentally stressed, your body can become physically stressed – causing more inflammation and a longer recovery rate. Taking time to relax can actually allow you to heal quicker!
  • Daily exercise: Exercise will keep the muscles warm, which can alleviate pain or stiffness, and stop the inflammation from becoming worse.

Contact us today if you’d like to speak with a physiotherapist about pain management or additional advice on how to reduce inflammation!


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