Physiotherapy After Surgery Can Significantly Improve Your Recovery Process

Surgery Coming Up? Physiotherapy Can Help You Get Back to Your Life Faster with a great recovery process!

Facing surgery can be a little scary. Not only are you unsure how the operation itself will go, you may not be clear about what to expect once the anesthesia has worn off. Fortunately, our physiotherapist can walk you through the precise recovery process for your surgery.

Call today to schedule a consultation. In the meantime, these reasons to attend post-surgical rehab will shed some light on how physiotherapy leads to a better recovery.

1. Reducing the amount of scar tissue from surgery

Surgery and scar tissue go hand in hand. Anytime a surgeon has to cut layers of skin, fatty tissue, connective tissue, and muscles, they must repair them as well.

In the process of the body finishing what the surgeon started, scar tissue forms. Scar tissue forms from inflammation and irritation around joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, making it difficult for the area to move.

Once scar tissue has formed and solidified, it is difficult and painful to break. The sooner a physiotherapist can help create movement in the area that has been affected by surgery, the less scar tissue will develop, the less pain a person will have during recovery.

Even though physiotherapy is often uncomfortable right after surgery, it is far less painful than waiting to begin rehabilitation.

2. Moving safely and comfortably, as soon as possible

A physiotherapist will often begin the therapy process within 24 hours of surgery. Multiple studies have found that patients who are up and moving right after surgery have faster recovery times than those who are allowed to rest and recover before rehabilitation. Patients who have a knee or hip replacement are required to stand and walk within 24 hours.

Patients who have surgery on other areas of the body are often referred to a physiotherapist even before surgery, so they can begin therapy as soon as they are discharged from the hospital. The sooner you begin rehabilitation after surgery, the faster your recovery, the better your outcome.

3. A physiotherapist is a movement expert

We often forget that a physiotherapist is a medical specialist. Not only have they completed extensive training and education, they are also skilled diagnosticians.

In your first meeting, your physiotherapist will assess your current movement capabilities and discuss your surgical procedure. They will then schedule your post-surgical rehab appointments in a way that is appropriate for your goals and procedure.

Your first thought may be, “It’s too soon!” or “There’s no way I’ll be ready.” Trust their skill, experience and expertise. Committing to physiotherapy the way it is prescribed, with the recommended timing and order, will have you back to optimal health much faster than fighting the process.

Common reasons for surgery

People may require surgery for a variety of reasons.

It may be required to remove diseased tissues, fix a broken bone, implant an electronic device, remove an obstruction or to explore a condition for the purpose of diagnosis.

Common surgeries include appendectomy, Cesarean section, hip replacement, coronary artery bypass, and low back surgery.

Find relief after surgery with passive and active therapies

Once our physiotherapist has isolated the underlying cause of your chronic joint pain, we can prescribe techniques to help you start feeling – and moving – more like your old self.

Physiotherapy for joint pain may start with passive exercises, in which we move the afflicted joint for you to increase its pain-free range of motion.

Exercises that reduce the amount of weight on the joints can also be extremely helpful. For instance, we may recommend swimming or water walking as a means of exercising the hips and knees without also forcing them to bear your full weight.

Other types of exercises can also help you overcome your joint pain while improving joint function. Strengthening exercises help by reinforcing the muscles and connective tissues that serve the joint. Corrective exercises and neuromuscular re-education can help you maintain a straighter, more symmetrical posture.

Last but not least, physiotherapy offers a variety of helpful modalities beyond exercise. We may treat your joint pain with heat, ice, and manual therapies such as massage, just to name a few.

Looking for help? Contact us!

If you are facing surgery, don’t wait to schedule your appointment with a physiotherapist.

Not only will they be able to outline your rehabilitation schedule and recovery process, they may also have valuable insight into things you can do now to prepare for your surgery date.

Call our office today!

Say Goodbye Your Chronic Back Pain With These Helpful Tips!

Did You Know Physiotherapy Could Help Provide Chronic Back Pain Relief?

Do you periodically find yourself disabled by bouts of back pain? Do you experience ongoing back pain that never gives you a moment’s relief?

Whatever form it may take, chronic back pain can put all kinds of limits on your life — until you finally start taking the necessary steps to address it head-on.

But you don’t have to schedule major surgery or allow yourself to become addicted to prescription painkillers just to keep this lurking monster at bay.

Conservative strategies such as physiotherapy and smart lifestyle practices can help you manage your chronic pain for life. Ask our physiotherapist to evaluate your conditions and recommend specific treatments!

What exactly is chronic back pain?

If you’ve ever injured your back in a car crash, high-impact sports injury or work-related accident, you know just how bad back pain can get.

As horrendously painful as that acute back pain may be, however, at least it goes away at some point. Chronic back pain hangs on long after an acute injury or other ailment should have resolved it through healing.

Chronic back pain is pain that persists for three months and longer. This type of pain can be due to a variety of reasons, including arthritis of the spine, aging, disc problems and myofascial pain syndrome.

Technically, back pain is categorized as chronic if it continues for at least 3 months -and in many cases, chronic back pain can haunt sufferers for years. This is especially true if your back pain stems from an irreversible or progressive condition.

About 20 percent of people who have back pain will have it develop into chronic back pain with persistent symptoms. Chronic back pain ranks number three on the scale for the most burdensome conditions for Americans.

What caused my back pain to develop?

The first step in addressing your chronic back pain is having some understanding of its cause.

Chronic back pain can be caused by many underlying issues, from an acute injury that failed to heal correctly to chronic health problems such as:

  • Degenerative disc disease, a condition in which the spinal discs bulge and flatten
  • Arthritis in the facet joints that mobilize your spinal column
  • Chronic muscle or connective strain due to stress, overuse or repetitive motion
  • Muscle knots associated with fibromyalgia, myofascial pain syndrome and other chronic problems
  • Physical or postural imbalances that lead to chronic muscle strain and soreness
  • Congenital deformities such as scoliosis
  • Excess weight from obesity or pregnancy
  • Herniated discs that compress spinal nerve tissue

Chronic back pain doesn’t always limit itself to your back.

Conditions that involve pinched nerve roots may send pain and other odd sensations into your upper or lower extremities.

What can physiotherapy do for chronic back pain?

Don’t fall into the trap of feeling helpless against your chronic back pain. Our physiotherapist can analyze your current condition to determine the exact cause of your symptoms.

We can then prescribe, not just physiotherapy exercises, but an entire way of living that helps you maintain optimal day-to-day comfort. Here are some tips you can incorporate into your new pain-management routine:

  • Sleep differently – Switch to a different type of mattress or adjust your sleep position to minimize nighttime (and next-day) pain.
  • Exercise – Regular physiotherapy exercises to strengthen your core muscles (including the muscles of the abdomen, pelvis and lower back) can stabilize your spine and ease muscle pain.
  • Change your ergonomics – Move things around in your workplace so that you can reach frequently-needed items with a minimum of stooping, bending or twisting.
  • Pursue stress reduction – Yoga, meditation, and other stress-busting techniques can help you keep your back muscles relaxed.
  • Improve your nutrition – Emphasize anti-inflammatory foods, “nature’s medicine” for chronic pain. Our physiotherapist can also prescribe exercises to help you lose weight, thus taking pressure off of your spine.

The exercises your physiotherapist prescribes to you will help retrain the deep muscles of your back. Your physiotherapist will show you how to use the right spinal and abdominal muscles before beginning any exercises to stabilize the spine. Manipulation is another technique to alleviate chronic back pain. Short and rapid thrusting movements are done over a joint to reduce pain and increase mobility.

Ready to find relief?

Ready to learn more about how to fight chronic back pain? Contact Be Active Physiotherapy and Wellness today!

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Physiotherapy After Surgery Can Significantly Improve Your Recovery Process

Surgery Coming Up? Physiotherapy Can Help You Get Back to Your Life Faster with a great recovery process!

Facing surgery can be a little scary. Not only are you unsure how the operation itself will go, you may not be clear about what to expect once the anesthesia has worn off. Fortunately, our physiotherapist can walk you through the precise recovery process for your surgery.

Call today to schedule a consultation. In the meantime, these reasons to attend post-surgical rehab will shed some light on how physiotherapy leads to a better recovery.

1. Reducing the amount of scar tissue from surgery

Surgery and scar tissue go hand in hand. Anytime a surgeon has to cut layers of skin, fatty tissue, connective tissue, and muscles, they must repair them as well.

In the process of the body finishing what the surgeon started, scar tissue forms. Scar tissue forms from inflammation and irritation around joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, making it difficult for the area to move.

Once scar tissue has formed and solidified, it is difficult and painful to break. The sooner a physiotherapist can help create movement in the area that has been affected by surgery, the less scar tissue will develop, the less pain a person will have during recovery.

Even though physiotherapy is often uncomfortable right after surgery, it is far less painful than waiting to begin rehabilitation.

2. Moving safely and comfortably, as soon as possible

A physiotherapist will often begin the therapy process within 24 hours of surgery. Multiple studies have found that patients who are up and moving right after surgery have faster recovery times than those who are allowed to rest and recover before rehabilitation. Patients who have a knee or hip replacement are required to stand and walk within 24 hours.

Patients who have surgery on other areas of the body are often referred to a physiotherapist even before surgery, so they can begin therapy as soon as they are discharged from the hospital. The sooner you begin rehabilitation after surgery, the faster your recovery, the better your outcome.

3. A physiotherapist is a movement expert

We often forget that a physiotherapist is a medical specialist. Not only have they completed extensive training and education, they are also skilled diagnosticians.

In your first meeting, your physiotherapist will assess your current movement capabilities and discuss your surgical procedure. They will then schedule your post-surgical rehab appointments in a way that is appropriate for your goals and procedure.

Your first thought may be, “It’s too soon!” or “There’s no way I’ll be ready.” Trust their skill, experience and expertise. Committing to physiotherapy the way it is prescribed, with the recommended timing and order, will have you back to optimal health much faster than fighting the process.

Common reasons for surgery

People may require surgery for a variety of reasons.

It may be required to remove diseased tissues, fix a broken bone, implant an electronic device, remove an obstruction or to explore a condition for the purpose of diagnosis.

Common surgeries include appendectomy, Cesarean section, hip replacement, coronary artery bypass, and low back surgery.

Find relief after surgery with passive and active therapies

Once our physiotherapist has isolated the underlying cause of your chronic joint pain, we can prescribe techniques to help you start feeling – and moving – more like your old self.

Physiotherapy for joint pain may start with passive exercises, in which we move the afflicted joint for you to increase its pain-free range of motion.

Exercises that reduce the amount of weight on the joints can also be extremely helpful. For instance, we may recommend swimming or water walking as a means of exercising the hips and knees without also forcing them to bear your full weight.

Other types of exercises can also help you overcome your joint pain while improving joint function. Strengthening exercises help by reinforcing the muscles and connective tissues that serve the joint. Corrective exercises and neuromuscular re-education can help you maintain a straighter, more symmetrical posture.

Last but not least, physiotherapy offers a variety of helpful modalities beyond exercise. We may treat your joint pain with heat, ice, and manual therapies such as massage, just to name a few.

Looking for help? Contact us!

If you are facing surgery, don’t wait to schedule your appointment with a physiotherapist.

Not only will they be able to outline your rehabilitation schedule and recovery process, they may also have valuable insight into things you can do now to prepare for your surgery date.

Call our office today!

Chronic Pain Can Make Daily Life Problematic – Physiotherapy is the Solution

Solve Your Daily Aches and Pains with Physiotherapy

Chronic pain affects more than 100 million people in the U.S. and 20-30% of the global population, reports the National Institutes of Health Office of Disease Prevention. Moreover, experts predict chronic pain will increase in prevalence as people age into later adulthood.

Finding relief for pain also continues to evolve, especially as health providers become more concerned over the use of narcotics and opioids to treat chronic pain.

However, understanding more about chronic pain and obtaining physiotherapy may alleviate your pain.

How can I tell if my pain is chronic?

Although pain is a natural way for the body to alert a person of a problem, it can rise to a heightened level. Chronic pain persists for weeks, months or even years, explains the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

When pain is unrelenting, it results in severe impacts on daily life. Chronic pain may include pain associated with arthritis, cancers, infection and even when no past injury or health problem exists.

Furthermore, chronic pain generally affects the back or a specific muscle group.

As stated by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke,

“While acute pain is a normal sensation triggered in the nervous system to alert you to possible injury and the need to take care of yourself, chronic pain is different. Chronic pain persists. Pain signals keep firing in the nervous system for weeks, months, even years.

There may have been an initial mishap — sprained back, serious infection, or there may be an ongoing cause of pain — arthritis, cancer, ear infection, but some people suffer chronic pain in the absence of any past injury or evidence of body damage. Many chronic pain conditions affect older adults.

Common chronic pain complaints include headache, low back pain, cancer pain, arthritis pain, neurogenic pain (pain resulting from damage to the peripheral nerves or to the central nervous system itself), psychogenic pain (pain not due to past disease or injury or any visible sign of damage inside or outside the nervous system).

A person may have two or more co-existing chronic pain conditions. Such conditions can include chronic fatigue syndrome, endometriosis, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, interstitial cystitis, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, and vulvodynia. It is not known whether these disorders share a common cause.”

Why did my chronic pain develop?

Treating chronic pain means managing the original cause. For example, someone living with tissue damage from a past fall or accident needs to address the actual issue.

It could be a herniated disk, poor posture, obesity, arthritis, past fractures or nerve damage. The list seems endless. Of course, another cause includes damage to the muscle or a ligament, also known as strains and sprains respectively, reports the Mayo Clinic.

Moreover, certain health problems may increase risk for damage to joints and muscles as well, contributing to a loss of motion and the buildup of tension.

For those without a root problem, turning to medications can feel like the only solution. However, a quick scan of recent news reports reveals many dangers exist in medication treatment for chronic pain, especially opioids.

Physiotherapy and chronic pain relief

As opioid overuse became a public health crisis, health providers started to think about other ways to manage chronic pain.

According to Move Forward PT, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends the use of non-drug approaches overuse of prescription painkillers.

Unlike medications, which simply place a proverbial bandage over the issue, physiotherapy works to address the root problem. Since causes of chronic are often associated with damage to a joint or muscle group, improving the range of motion of joints may improve symptoms.

In this case, more movement of joints encourages the body’s natural response to improve mobility and muscle tone, endurance, and strength. As a result, pain decreases.

For people with known injuries, treating injuries with physiotherapy serves additional purposes. These include improving circulation to the joint and tissues to promote healing, as well as helping a person learn to move the joint without risking additional damage.

The long car ride is an example of how failure to move frequently contributes to soreness. Over time, the limited motion will cause pain during movement. So, routine treatment with a physiotherapist may reduce the risk for chronic pain, as well as improve symptoms for those living with it today.

Solve the issue of chronic pain with physiotherapy

Chronic pain does not always require advanced medication treatment.

Instead, physiotherapy and understanding more about the causes of chronic pain may be the best solution, and in fact, they carry less risk for injury, resulting in fewer side effects and elimination of the risk for addiction.

To learn more about how therapy could help with your chronic pain, schedule your appointment online today.

Dealing With Morning Achiness? Find Relief with Physiotherapy

Say Goodbye to Achy and Painful Mornings with Physiotherapy!

Are you suffering from aches and pains in the morning? Unfortunately, millions of people experience sore muscles and stiff joints in the morning.

There could be a variety of reasons for this, with the severity of pain ranging from mild to even severe in some cases. Aches and pains in the morning are not only uncomfortable, but can at least temporarily limit your mobility during the day.

Call our office to find out how we can help you eliminate aches and pains in the morning and throughout the day.

Physiotherapy and pain relief

Staying hydrated, eating healthy, and getting enough exercise can help reduce aches and pains in the morning. Working with a physiotherapist can also help.

A therapist will conduct a thorough evaluation of your current health, sleep habits, and medical conditions. A physiotherapist can also teach you exercises you can do in the morning when you first get out of bed. A routine prescribed by your therapist can target specific problem areas such as your back or shoulders.

A physiotherapist can also recommend different sleep positions that may be able to decrease the pain you experience each morning. A physiotherapy program can be created that will specifically treat your aches and pains. This could include manual therapy, hot and cold therapy, and sensory re-education.

Why am I experiencing aches and pains?

Accidents, injuries, and chronic health conditions could all be reasons for experiencing ongoing pain.

Aches and pains in the morning, however, could be the result of the following:

  • Diet – A diet that is high in fast food and processed foods can cause inflammation in the joints. Excessive amounts of sugar and red meat could also contribute to aches and pains.
  • Arthritis – If you’re suffering from any type of arthritic condition, pain and soreness may be more of a problem in the morning.
  • Inflammation – Chronic low-grade inflammation is sometimes the culprit when experiencing morning aches and pains. Inflammation and morning stiffness often increases with aging.
  • Poor Sleeping Positions – Aches and pains in the morning are often related to awkward sleeping positions. Sometimes pain is due to the wrong type of mattress or pillow.

There are several symptoms you might experience if you’re sore and achy in the morning.

Pain is often located in the neck and back area, although you may also experience pain in your legs, arms, and shoulders. Stiffness will often accompany morning aches and pains.

There’s a chance your morning aches and pains could be from your mattress

According to Spine Health, “Sleeping on the wrong mattress can cause or worsen lower back pain. Lack of support from a mattress reinforces poor sleeping posture, strains muscles and does not help keep the spine in alignment, all of which contribute to low back pain.

Sleep comfort is also sacrificed if a mattress does not match one’s individual preferences. A mattress that provides both comfort and back support helps reduce low back pain, allowing the structures in the spine to really rest and rejuvenate during the night.”

While the Better Sleep Council recommends replacing your mattress every 7 to 10 years, the way you feel in the morning is a better indicator that it’s time to replace your sleep surface.

If your mattress was once comfortable but now seems to be at the root of your aches and pains, it may be time to replace it. Physical changes like injuries, surgery and weight change can also change your body’s position as you sleep, necessitating a faster change in your mattress.

What else should I know about morning aches and pains?

Feeling achy and sore in the morning can be different from other types of pain you experience at other times throughout the day.

After an intense workout you might have sore muscles from overexertion. If you’ve experienced an injury of some sort, this can also cause pain. Aches and pains in the morning occur after you’ve been sleeping for several hours.

Morning pain and stiffness is usually not a cause for concern. Harvard Health Publishing states that if stiffness lasts more than 30 minutes you’ll want to see a doctor. These could be signs of more serious conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or polymyalgia rheumatica.

Find relief today!

Contact our office in Oakville, ON to learn how physiotherapy can help eliminate your aches and pains.

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Living With Achy Hips and Knees? Kick Your Pain to the Curb with Physiotherapy

Find the Relief You Need with the Help of a Physiotherapist!

Are your hips and knees in pain when you wake up? Are you in pain when you go to bed? Are the activities you do between sunrise and sunset impacted by chronic hip and knee joint dysfunction?

You don’t have to give up hope of living with less pain—or become reliant on the medicine cabinet, either.

At our physiotherapy clinic, we have an experienced physiotherapist staff who can help you find more ease, strength, and confidence in your day-to-day life.

We invite you to call us and find out how we can help. Read more to learn what we do every day for our patients in hip and knee pain!

5 reasons you should consider physiotherapy for hip and knee pain

1. Move with ease and without pain

Many of the impairments you and your physiotherapist work to correct—including weakness, poor posture, and limited range of motion—may have been caused or worsened by things you’re unknowingly doing.

This includes sitting too much, using poor body mechanics, breathing improperly, and having an ineffective ergonomic set-up at work. A physiotherapist can educate you about ways to move in more energy-efficient and safe ways to enhance the overall effects of your care and reduce the risk of re-injury.

2. Improve the health and fitness of your joints

When you see a physiotherapist for hip or knee pain, he or she may use joint mobilizations or manipulations to help promote healing and attract circulation to the inner joint surfaces.

These techniques have also been shown to reduce pain and improve joint alignment…and they feel good, too! When complemented with services like massage and the Active Release Technique, physiotherapy can help you get physical and mental relief.

3. Participate in treatment methods that are safe, effective, and non-invasive

You don’t have to rely on over-the-counter or prescription painkillers to ease those achy, stiff, swollen joints!

Physiotherapy modalities that have been shown to ease pain, reduce spasms, increase circulation, and promote healing include electrical stimulation, diathermy, cold laser therapy, dry needling, and therapeutic ultrasound.

4. Enhance your range of motion and improve your joint strength

Increasing muscle strength and mobility of the connective tissues around your joints (including the tendons, muscles, fascia, and joint capsules) will help your joints feel better and move better.

This can also help you improve your functional activity tolerance, which is essential for work, leisure, and simple daily function.

5. Reclaim your life!

According to the Arthritis Foundation, exercise is one of the best ways to manage hip pain and knee pain caused by osteoarthritis.

By implementing some or all of the above interventions in a customized treatment plan, a physiotherapist can help you get back to regular exercise in a way that is safe and effective for you, based on your current abilities, goals, and needs.

This is especially helpful if you’re currently on a fat loss journey since being overweight is a major risk factor for knee and hip pain.

What’s causing my hip and knee pains?

Hip and knee pain can be caused by a great number of problems.

Some of these are related to musculoskeletal misalignment, poor posture, and/or excess weight; others occur as the result of natural aging or unhealthy sports/work habits.

Your hip or knee pain may stem from:

  • Infections
  • Bursitis, an inflammation of the friction-reducing sacs surround the joints
  • Tendinitis, or stretched ligaments
  • Osteoarthritis, a painful inflammatory condition involving deteriorated joint cartilage
  • Runner’s knee, an instability of the kneecap
  • Postural/alignment issues that throw your body off balance, straining the knees or hips
  • Traumatic injuries, such as dislocation of the joint

Our physiotherapist can often tell the cause of your hip or knee pain from its location.

For example, pain along the inside of the hip is more likely to be caused by a problem with the bones or cartilage. Pain along the outer side is typically caused by a problem in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments.

Ready to find relief?

The sooner you seek physiotherapy for knee or hip pain, the better. Research shows that patients who rehab their hip or knee pain with physiotherapy within 15 days of symptom onset have less need for pain injections, medications, or surgical intervention.

Tired of spending every day in pain?

Contact our clinic today to schedule an appointment with a physiotherapist and heal from the inside out.

Stretching is Extremely Important, Both Before AND After Workouts

Did You Know Stretching Both Before and After Workouts Could Help Decrease the Risk of Injury?

Do you make time to go to the gym a few times per week? If so, you should commend yourself for your efforts.

But at our physiotherapy clinic, we notice an interesting trend with a lot of our active patients: they go to the gym regularly, but they largely neglect stretching and mobility work.

We’re not sure why this is so common—maybe because stretching doesn’t seem as “exciting” as an actual workout.

But proper stretching before and after exercise has many proven health benefits and can improve your workout, too!

Talk to a physiotherapist today about which types of stretching you should focus on and find out which areas on your body have a limited range of motion and flexibility.

In the meantime, keep reading to learn why stretching is so great for your body and mind.

Stretching and physiotherapy

There is a reason why stretching is a staple of physiotherapy. The act of stretching can do wonders for your health. In fact, according to Physiopedia,

“Stretching exercises have traditionally been included as part of a training and recovery program.

Evidence shows that physical performance in terms of maximal strength, number of repetitions and total volume are all affected differently by the each form of stretching – static stretch (SS), dynamic stretch (DS) and Pre-contraction stretching, Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation stretching (PNFS) being the most common type.

Stretching can help improve flexibility and range of motion about your joints. Improved flexibility may: Improve your performance in physical activities; Decrease your risk of injuries; Help your joints move through their full range of motion; Enable your muscles to work most effectively.”

Stretching provides numerous benefits to help your body keep itself healthier. One of the most important of these is stress relief. Everyday life throws lots of challenges at you, and the resulting stress can be held in your muscles.

This leads to tightness, spasms, and chronic discomforts such as headaches and neck pain. Stress also floods your body with “fight or flight” hormones such as cortisone and adrenaline. These imbalances can suppress your immune function, making you more vulnerable to viruses and other diseases. Hypertension is yet another dangerous consequence of chronic stress.

Regular stretches help your body release all that pent-up stress. By relaxing and loosening your muscles, you can maintain better control over your blood pressure, avoid chronic muscle pain, and keep your immune system ready for anything.

What can stretching before and after workouts offer?

1. Preparing for exercise ahead of time.

Dynamic stretching before a workout can help your muscles, ligaments, tendons, joint capsules, and other tissues become loosened up and prepared for exercise.

Pre-workout mobility also increases core body temperature and stimulates increased blood flow throughout the body so your tissues will have adequate amounts of oxygen to work.

Meanwhile, stretching after a workout helps you cool down appropriately and reduce tissue tightness and pain.

2. Working out better!

A personalized stretching routine that addresses your specific areas of postural imbalances and tightness can help you improve your range of motion.

When you combine this with strength training and aerobic conditioning, you can expect to function more efficiently during your workouts and enjoy greater stamina, power, and speed.

Since pre-workout mobility also prepares your body for exercise, it’ll also help you safely reach your desired workout intensity more quickly since you’ll be able to start a workout already warmed up and ready to go.

3. Relieving stress.

Stretching regularly—especially when combined with deep breathing and mindfulness exercises—is a great way to ease mental stress and even reduce signs and symptoms of depression and anxiety.

4. Reducing injury risk.

Some studies do show that stretching may reduce your risk of muscle strains, ligament sprains, joint damage, and other painful injuries common with sports and athletics.

5. Enhancing your health.

Regular stretching has been shown to improve your blood pressure and heart rate as well as maximize your overall mobility, especially as you age.

The importance of warm-ups

You may have heard that stretching “cold” muscles isn’t ideal—which is true. Our bodies need to be adequately warmed up prior to stretching—otherwise we increase our risk for injury and tissue damage.

This doesn’t mean you should never stretch at all before a workout, however. A simple 5-minute warm-up such as light jogging, brisk walking, and arm circles and leg swings is usually sufficient to get your joints and tissues warmed up and prepared for mobility work.

For many folks, dynamic stretches are the most effective for pre-workout mobility. Meanwhile, they’ll save static stretches and foam rolling for after the workout. Wondering what works best for you?

Our physiotherapy staff is happy to help you problem-solve and figure out the best routine for your body.

Want more help? We’ve got you covered!

If you’d like to become more disciplined with a mobility routine and need some inspiration and education on the best mobility moves your body needs, schedule an appointment with a physiotherapist today.

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Herniated Discs Can Be Painful – Here’s How to Tell if You Have One

Did You Know Physiotherapy Could Help Relieve Pain Caused by Herniated Discs?

Could you have herniated disc pain? This type of pain can sneak up on you. You’re sitting comfortably watching TV and when you stand up, there’s a sharp pain that radiates through your back.

If you’re experiencing pain in your lower back, you just might have a herniated disc. Contact our office in Oakville, Ontario for a consultation and evaluation, so you can get a proper diagnosis.

Herniated discs, defined

The spine consists of 33 bones referred to as vertebrae. The vertebrae are cushioned by discs made up of a gel-like substance. This cushions the discs and prevents friction.

It’s the discs that allow movement of the spine, such as bending over. However, if a disc slips out of place between the vertebrae, you have a herniated disc.

This condition is also known as a ruptured disc or slipped disc. A herniated disc can cause extreme pain if it irritates the surrounding nerves.

Why do herniated discs develop?

A disc herniation is often caused by age-related wear and tear. This condition is known as disc degeneration. With age, the disc loses water content, which makes them more prone to tearing and less flexible. Twisting and turning when lifting something can also cause a herniated disc.

Even a fall or strike to the back can result in a herniated disc. Excessive weight, occupation and genetic disposition can be the cause of disc herniated, too. Sometimes, people are unable to determine what caused their herniated disc.

“The most common symptoms of a herniated disc are arm or leg pain, numbness or tingling and weakness.” You may feel pain in your calf, thigh and buttocks. If you have a herniated disc in the neck, you’re likely to feel pain in the arm and shoulder.

When you cough or sneeze, the pain may shoot into your leg. Numbness or tingling may be felt in parts of the body. You may also be unable to lift items, as the muscles served by the affected nerves tend to weaken.

Physiotherapy and herniated disc pain relief

A physiotherapist will design a specific treatment program to reduce pain and speed up your recovery, so you can return to your normal activities and lifestyle. Typically, recovery can be achieved within two to eight weeks with the help of a physiotherapist. A physiotherapist will conduct an in-depth evaluation and outline specific treatment for patients with herniated discs.

Physiotherapy may include stretching exercises, massage, ice and heat therapy, electrical muscle stimulation, pelvic traction and ultrasound.

A physiotherapist will also choose specific treatments to help restore movement and reduce pain. Passive movements may be performed on you by a physiotherapist and then you can progress to active exercises on your own.

Stretching exercises will also be done, which can be done at home. Other modalities of treatment for herniated disc pain include hot and cold therapy, massage, electric stimulation, ultrasound and soft tissue mobilization.

According to research, physiotherapy often plays a big role in herniated disc recovery. Physiotherapy entails a holistic approach with both active and passive treatments. Not only is pain relief a result of physiotherapy, but a physiotherapist will teach patients how to prevent further injury.

What does a PT treatment plan for herniated discs look like?

According to SpineUniverse,

“Physiotherapy often plays a major role in herniated disc recovery. Its methods not only offer immediate pain relief, but they also teach you how to condition your body to prevent further injury.

There are a variety of physiotherapy techniques. Passive treatments relax your body and include deep tissue massage, hot and cold therapy, electrical stimulation (eg, TENS), and hydrotherapy.”

Our physiotherapist can check your symptoms against X-rays, postural evaluations, and other factors to confirm the presence and location of a herniated disc.

In addition to analyzing your symptoms and performing various tests and measures, a physiotherapist can help you determine if you have a herniated disc by assessing your medical history and lifestyle.

While the most severe cases might require surgery, physiotherapy can help many sufferers overcome their symptoms the natural way.

Physiotherapy to treat herniated discs focuses on building the strength in your back muscles, optimizing your posture, and increasing your pain-free flexibility.

Our physiotherapist may start you with a daily walking regimen before moving on to more strenuous aerobic and strengthening exercises.

Find relief today!

If you’re suffering with herniated disc pain, call us today to schedule an appointment.

Our physiotherapists will review your medical history, test your mobility, test your range of motion and create a personalized treatment plan just for you. Contact us today and we’ll get you on the road to recovery.

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If You Are in Need of More Physical Activity, Try These 7 Tips

Get Moving Again with These Helpful Tips!

Did you know that 80 percent of the U.S. population falls short of the Physical Activity Guidelines recommended by the Department of Health and Human Services? Millions of Americans are risking serious health consequences simply because they do too much sitting and not enough moving around.

You may not find that information shocking, especially if you’re one of those 80 percent. What really might surprise you, however, is just how easily you can give your daily activity level a dramatic boost. Here are seven simple tips from our physiotherapist for adding some much-needed additional exercise to your life.

1. Take your dog for a walk.

Have you ever marveled at the sheer energy and endurance displayed by your dog? Dogs love to walk, run, play catch and explore.

Join in these activities, and you’ll find that your dog gives you one heck of a workout.

2. Get your workout in while watching TV.

There’s nothing wrong with spending some quality time watching your favorite TV shows or movies – but you don’t necessarily have to spend all those hours sprawled on your couch, motionless.

Consider getting a stationary bike or treadmill that you can use while you’re catching up on your stories. You’ll have just as much fun, but you’ll be working out instead of sacking out.

3. Opt for a standing desk.

Standing desks have become all the rage in workplaces, and for good reason.

Standing at your desk instead of sitting can help prevent unwanted weight gain, regulate blood sugar levels after meals, ease back pain, elevate your mood and energy level, reduce your heart disease risk, and add years to your life expectancy. You may even find that you get more work done!

4. Find a yoga studio near you.

Physical activity isn’t always a matter of running or jumping around at a frenetic pace. Yoga offers profound benefits to body and mind by releasing stress, stretching muscles, increasing your range of motion, and helping you master your breathing.

A yoga class offers structured learning as well as a positive social environment.

5. Discover the fun of a new sport.

Getting that extra activity doesn’t have to be a chore; it could just as easily take the form of new fun.

Have you thought of taking up tennis, golf, surfing, swimming, running, or a team sport such as soccer or softball? These sports all offer different physical benefits, and they all get you up and moving.

6. Ride your bike.

If that trip to the corner store takes too much time on foot, maybe it’s time you remembered how to ride a bicycle.

Cycling exercises different muscles than walking, making it a valuable complement to that discipline when you need to go a little farther and a little faster. It also provides you with a significant cardio workout.

7. When possible, walk instead of drive.

Many people automatically get into their cars even for a brief trip to the mailbox or corner store. What if you spent an extra few minutes each day walking instead of driving?

It might not sound like much of a workout, but walking increases the circulation, exercises your legs and feet, sheds excess pounds, keeps your joints limber, and helps to release stress.

Looking for more tips? Athletic training could help!

People most commonly turn to physiotherapy after sustaining an injury. You’re in pain, looking for relief and recovery, and trying to find the motivation to push yourself to get there.

Physiotherapists are trained to help you bounce back from your injury, with just as much strength (if not more!) than you had before the injury. They are dedicated to always helping you reach your peak, whatever that may be.

You can discover the benefits of athletic training with our physiotherapists. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Overcoming injuries. Physiotherapy treatments are some of the best ways to overcome an injury and find relief for your pain. Each treatment is designed specifically to the needs of each individual and the condition of their injury, consisting of exercises and strength-building activities that are unique to their recovery.
  • Refocusing strengths. A physiotherapist can help you focus on improving your strength in areas that you may not have considered. Many parts of the body influence each other, and strengthening one can help with the function of another. Rather than jumping directly into a new form of activity, it makes sense to train your body to react to the new form of stimulation by improving your muscular strength and range of motion.
  • Developing healthy habits. While a physiotherapist can help you reach physical goals, they can also help you work on general wellness goals, as well. For example, regular exercise, a healthy diet, and a strong focus on hydration are fundamental in improving your physical fitness level. A physiotherapist is a great resource to have when focusing on increasing strength and muscular functionality, as they can help you improve in all aspects of health and wellness.

Contact us today!

Are there activities on this list that you’d love to try — if only your body would let you? Physiotherapy could get you back in shape to get into better shape.

Contact our physiotherapist for a one-to-one consultation!

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