Denver Physical Therapy & Wellness

TMJ Treatment Tips for Fall Allergy Flair-Ups

November 7, 2018

Fall allergies can be frustrating enough. Itchy eyes, stuffy and/or running notes, sneezing… they are quite an uncomfortable nuisance. When you also suffer from TMJ disorder, the two paired together can make for an unpleasant fall. Don’t worry, there are things you can do to help. Take advantage of these allergy and TMJ treatment tips for relief. 

Allergies and TMJ Disorder

The TMJ is located in and around the same place as allergies. Sinuses line around the nose, between one’s eyes and along cheekbones. When working properly, sinuses stop bacteria from getting into the lungs. Allergies can cause those sinuses to swell or become infected. During the fall, many types of allergens in the air can confuse the body. 

The immune system takes allergens like pollen or ragweed for invaders. To combat them, it causes all of the unwanted symptoms. All of this can make things even more painful for a person with TMJ disorder. Allergies can increase inflammation in problematic areas, worsening TMJ disorder symptoms. The key to relief is to combat allergies and take precautions to calm the TMJ. 

Reducing Allergies

If you suffer from fall allergies, use some of these techniques for relief: 
  • Take an antihistamine 
  • Reduce your time outside on days the pollen count is high
  • Keep windows shut so outdoor allergens do not get inside
  • Purchase a furnace filter that helps combat allergens in the air
  • Wash your bedding regularly, using a hot sanitizing wash that will kill any allergens
  • Use a dehumidifier to reduce moisture in the air that can harbor allergens
  • Protect your eyes outside by wearing glasses instead of contacts or sunglasses
  • Keep your house clean and do a routine dusting daily or almost every day
  • Vacuum or sweep floors regularly
  • If you spend the day outdoors, change immediately after you get home and preferably take a shower too (to rid yourself of allergens)
  • Do not leave clothing or towels outside to dry
  • Ask your doctor or allergist if you are an ideal candidate for allergy shots

TMJ Disorder Comfort

In addition to finding techniques that help you reduce or eliminate allergy symptoms, use these resources to reduce pain due to TMD: 
  • Do not eat foods that are overly chewy that cause an added strain on your jaw (steak, gum, crunchy foods, etc.)
  • Depending which works better for you, use hot or cold packs on your face to reduce inflammation and calm muscles
  • Use a mouth guard when you sleep to help you from clenching or bruxism
  • Ask your doctor about anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxers to calm tense muscles
  • See a physical therapist to learn what temporomandibular joint (TMJ) exercises relieve pain

As you seek ways to find relief for your TMJ pain while combatting fall allergies, Peak Physical Therapy & Wellness can help. Our staff is experienced in treating TMJ disorder, helping you to reduce swelling and pain. We strive to help you feel your best so you can perform best at work, home, and exercising. Contact Peak PT & Wellness Center closest to you today and schedule your appointment. 

Using Parker Physical Therapy to Prevent Injuries

October 31, 2018

When many people think about Parker physical therapy, it’s associated with recovering from an injury. However, physical therapy is crucial for preventing injuries too. This applies to everyday injuries doing normal activities, as well as sports. With millions of sports injuries and issues from the workplace, it is important to speak with a physical therapist to learn best practices. 

Preventing Injuries with Physical Therapy

Did you know you can avoid painful and costly injuries simply by seeing a physical therapist? Also, did you know that you do not have to be an athlete to learn ways to avoid injuries? From workplace mishaps to exercising, seeing a local physical therapist can help you avoid an injury in any environment. This does not mean you need a weekly visit as you may with an injury, but a yearly check-in similar to one with your primary care physician. 

At this appointment, you can discuss with a physical therapist your day-to-day. Tell them about your favorite activities, how you function at work, exercises you do, sports you participate in, and anything else you do during the day. From there, the physical therapist can learn your existing form and routine. They will be able to spot any issues that can be detrimental longterm and develop a plan for you to correct those behaviors. In addition, your physical therapist can introduce you to exercises and stretches to reduce minor aches and pains that you may be treating with medications or topical creams. Your physical therapist can help you work through any old injuries and give you techniques and exercises to do to avoid re-injuring yourself again. 

Training for an athletic event in the future, such a marathon? Include a physical therapist into the conversation. They will provide valuable tips for training to ensure your strength and success. When you begin to think proactively rather than reactively with your health, you can avoid costly visits to the doctor. Plus, you will physically feel better under the guidance of a physical therapist—helping you be more productive and happier. 

General Common Reasons Physical Therapy is Used

Physical therapy is incredibly beneficial in a multitude of ways, not just for injury recovery or avoidance. Therapy can help in the following ways: 
  • Balance issues: Senior citizens or people who struggle with balance issues can benefit from physical therapy. Through a specialized plan of exercises, a physical therapist can identify some of the critical issues and develop strategies that prevent dangerous falls. 
  • Arthritis: Those suffering from arthritis can see a physical therapist to learn exercises and techniques to reduce pain. These techniques can also help a person become stronger and have a better range of motion in areas they struggle with. 
  • Avoid surgery: If you have an ailment that your doctor thinks may be best to have operated on, try physical therapy first. In many cases, physical therapy can help a person regain strength and eliminate the need for surgery. Or, if you must have a surgery, see a physical therapist in the weeks leading up to the operation. This can help speed up recovery time and reduce pain. 
  • Headaches and migraines: Physical therapists can help individuals suffering from debilitating headaches and migraines. How? Often times, these issues are caused by tenseness and bad posture. A physical therapist can correct these issues. 
  • Strains: When a person strains a part of the body, it can take a long time to recover if you do not take care of it properly. In addition, using the same repetitive movements can re-injure and area—something your go-to physical therapist can help you learn how to avoid. 
  • Women’s issues: From incontinence to pelvic floor issues, women can see a local physical therapist for relief. Various muscles can be worked and strengthened to reduce or eliminate pain and take the stress out of certain situations. New mothers can also benefit from visiting a physical therapist to regain strength. 

Top Injuries to Seek Therapy

In the event you sustain an injury, whether it be carpal tunnel syndrome from a desk job to tearing your ACL, a physical therapist will do wonders for your treatment. Upon sustaining an injury, one of the first things you should do is practice the “RICE” method, which stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Immediately stop putting pressure and/or weight on the injured area and apply ice or something frozen to help reduce swelling. Using compression around the affected area will help to also reduce swelling as well as elevating it. In addition to “RICE,” call your primary care physician or contact 911 if extremely serious and painful. After you have received care, contact a local physical therapist to aid in your recovery. 

Some of the top injuries include: 
  • Achilles tendonitis: When the Achilles tendon, which connects your heel bone to your calf muscles, is overused or injured, it can be incredibly painful. It is common in sports or routine daily activities that incorporate jumping or running. In addition to care under a professional, a physical therapist will help you regain strength and avoid repeating motions that could cause it to become damaged again. 
  • General sprains and strains: Sprains and strains can occur almost anywhere. Ensuring you take proper care to heal and seeing a physical therapist will help you avoid re-spraining in the future. 
  • Shoulder injuries: Sports or activities where a person is repetitively rotating the shoulder joints can lead to injuries. They can happen with repeated use that causes extra strain, leaving them to become irritated, inflamed, or other issues. 
  • Plantar fasciitis: The band of tissue that connects the heel to the ball of the feet can become painful when it tears or become inflamed. It can become irritated when you introduce new exercises or routines putting added strain on your feet, gain weight or have a job that requires you to be on your feet for hours at a time. Physical therapists can help you develop strategies to reduce inflammation and make this condition manageable. 

If you have never been to a physical therapist before, now is the perfect time to start. Peak Physical Therapy will help you when it comes to preparing for your Denver physical therapy appointment. With several locations, you can visit the Peak Physical Therapy location near you. We will help you identify any potential issues and help you correct them to avoid injury! 

Recover From a Fall with the Help of a Physical Therapist in Parker

October 24, 2018

A fall is one of the most common ways in which an elderly person can injure themselves. Whether it’s due to increasing age, cognitive impairments, medication use, or any other factor, an injury from a fall can become a significant health issue to overcome for older individuals. However, a fall doesn’t have to signal the end of a person’s physical independence, as there are ways to reduce the chances of a fall occurring again. One key strategy which can be employed is to see a qualified physical therapist in Parker to help with fall prevention.

Fall Prevention and Risk Reduction

Physical therapy is not only used to improve and speed up a person’s rehabilitation process, it can also be used as a way to strengthen an individual’s physical health, reducing the chances of a fall creating detrimental health outcomes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are the leading cause of fatal injuries as well as nonfatal injuries for the aging population.

For this reason, it’s especially important to do everything you can to reduce the chances of a fall occurring as you age. Utilizing the services of a trained physical therapist is one of the smartest and most effective way a person can decrease their chances of becoming a fall victim. Physical therapy will help to strengthen someone’s walking abilities as well as their balance and coordination levels. This is done through a combination of strength-training exercises as well as activities that improve balance, such as dance steps or Tai Chi.

It’s important to keep in mind that every person’s path to recovery will not be the same, and that multiple factors will need to be assessed in order to determine what the right course of action is. In addition to physical limitations, medication use and other impairments need to be taken into account in order to come up with an effective treatment plan that will holistically address all relevant issues. Another strategy a person can employ in addition to seeking physical therapy treatment is to make the home environment safer by removing potential fall risks. Modifying the environment to improve safety, combined with regular physical therapy sessions, is a great way to reduce the chances of falling in the future.

If you are looking to improve your physical health situation and are in need of physical therapy due to an accident or other physical ailments, contact Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness today and we will be happy to assist you with your first steps towards recovery. We have an extensive team of qualified physical therapists and specialists who care deeply about their clients and go above and beyond the call of duty to provide the highest quality treatment in the industry. If you are looking for a therapist who will carefully assess your individual needs and formulate a treatment plan that is specifically tailored to your needs, Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness is your preferred choice for the physical recovery process.

Alternative Ways to Treat Headaches Including Dry Needling

October 17, 2018

Headaches can be debilitating. Nearly all Americans have experienced headaches, sometimes on a regular basis, making everyday tasks and activities a struggle. Even worse, a bad headache can lead you to cancel plans and spend time in a dark room medicating yourself. If you are looking for alternative ways to handle your headaches, there are options to treat or aid with your current treatment plan. From oils to dry needling in Denver, consider one of these options for relief. 

Essential Oils

In the last few years, there has been a rise in popularity with essential oils. These oils are made up of liquid of various plant that some people find helpful for many of life’s issues, including headaches. Oils are a natural treatment, which many like when keeping away from traditional medications. Each type of oil can relax an area, helping to calm down tense problematic areas. 

Oils can be bought almost anywhere, from your local drug store, online, or at the grocery. Before buying, read the tips for buying essential oils so you know the oils you are purchasing are quality. Remember—price and quality do not always correlate, and you do not have to buy the most expensive oil for results. 

If you have pets, use caution with diffusers as some of them can cause illness in your pets. Once you are ready to shop for oils, you can find them at affordable prices, so be sure to shop around to get the best price. Some of the best oils to use for headaches are: 
  • Peppermint: The menthol in peppermint is one of the leading reasons it is helpful for those suffering from a headache. Menthol is known for a calming effect, which can ease tension in the head while experiencing a headache. When applying peppermint oil, it can also help promote healthy blood flow, which can reduce the symptoms of headaches. 
  • Lavender: Lavender itself has been used for relaxation in a variety of ways, so it is no surprise that it is a popular oil used for headaches. Whether used topically or used through a diffuser, it is a fast-acting relief method that can actually calm muscle and reduce symptoms within 15 minutes. Lavender is especially helpful for severe headaches or migraines. 
  • Eucalyptus: For those with headaches due to sinus problems, Eucalyptus is a go-to. It is known as an anti-inflammatory, helping to calm muscles and increase blood flow. It also has traits that make it a decongestant, making it a great option for those needing to clear the sinuses for relief. 

Diet Changes

Did you know the food and beverage you consume could be the leading cause for your headaches? Everyone is made differently, which means your body can react differently to certain things that are consumed. This is why it is important to monitor what you eat to figure out what foods could be triggering your headaches. Some of the most popular foods or ingredients that cause headaches include aged cheese, alcohol, artificial sweeteners, bread, caffeine (which for some, can actually help headaches), chocolate, MSG, nitrates, nuts, oranges, pickled goods, pizza, potato chips, sulfites, and much more. 

The best way to approach food is to figure out which foods trigger your headaches. Do this by purchasing a food journal. Begin taking note of what you eat each day and when you get headaches. You must do this for a long duration of time, so you can compare foods against each other once you are at a place to narrow things down. As you determine possible triggers, eliminate them from your diet. Continue to take detailed notes to help you as you narrow these downs. 

On the flipside, certain foods and ingredients have been known to help reduce symptoms of a headache. Some of these foods include: 
  • Almonds
  • Avocado
  • Bananas
  • Brown rice or quinoa
  • Caffeine
  • Cherries
  • Eggs
  • Fish (salmon, tuna, etc.)
  • Lettuce and spinach
  • Melons (water, cantaloupe, etc.)
  • Mushrooms
  • Regular or sweet potatoes
  • Yogurt

Also, dehydration is a leading cause of headaches. The recommended minimum amount of water to consume in a day is 64 ounces. However, depending on your activity levels, you may need to replace water more quickly. Start with at least 64 ounces and increase it depending on how active you are, your type of work, etc.

Dry Needling

At your local physical therapy office, dry needling can be performed to help with your headaches. Often mistaken for acupuncture, dry needling is a technique that uses thin, filament needles that are strategically placed into the soft tissue. The areas are known as trigger points, which are essentially knots. Dry needling is popular to treat a variety of aches and pains and can be especially helpful for treating headaches. 

A physical therapist will be able to determine where these trigger points are that could be the cause of your headaches. These areas could be in your neck, back, temples, or other areas. 

Don’t worry, dry needling isn’t painful. It is not like receiving several shots. Most can barely feel the needle going in and a common reaction is a small twitch or spasm in the area. After the twitch, which stimulates the muscle, it then relaxes. Some may experience a sensation of a cramp and some soreness, but it is short-term with great results. At most, you could feel sore for a day, which you can calm with hot or cold treatment and stretches. In order to see some long-term relief, you will schedule a series of visits for the treatment—usually six to eight. Once the needles are inserted, it helps to break up the knots in the area, hence causing relief. 

Using Denver physical therapy to help relieve chronic headaches is a great way to live a pain-free life. The team at Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness are experienced in dry needling trigger point therapy. It is a great way many of our patients choose to find relief—not only for headaches, but for bursitis, sciatica, neck or back pain, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, and more. We have locations throughout the Denver area—contact Peak PT & Wellness to schedule a consultation at an office near you. 

Ways to Use Physical Therapy for Women’s Health

October 10, 2018

Physical therapy for Denver women’s health is a great way to prevent issues and care for existing problems that heavily impact day-to-day. In fact, many women do not realize all the ways visiting a physical therapist can reduce or eliminate health issues. Review all the different ways to take advantage of local physical therapy. 

Prenatal and Postpartum

Physical therapy is great for soon-to-be moms and moms that have just given birth. Through a specific plan and exercises that help with lower back pain common in pregnant women. A physical therapist will also help a woman maintain proper posture during changes in the body. After a baby is born, physical therapy is ideal for any injuries or complications that have occurred. 

Strengthening Adnominal Muscles

Older women, especially those who have given birth, may experience problems with weak abdominal muscles. One of the most common conditions in women is diastasis recti, a separation of abdominal muscles in women due to pregnancy. Women with this condition may experience lower back pain and other issues. A physical therapist can help to strengthen those muscles. 

Working through Incontinence and Bladder Issues

When the pelvic floor muscles are weak, a woman may experience bladder issues or incontinence. Control can be regained when the muscles are strengthened, which can be accomplished by various pelvic floor strengthening exercises. A physical therapist can also help with bladder issues, creating a stress-free life. 

Easing Lower Back Pain

What causes low back pain? It occurs due to a variety of causes. Whether a woman has given birth or not, lower back pain can become an issue. A physical therapist will assess issues that have resulted in pain. From there, stretches and exercises will be used to strengthen muscles. A physical therapist will also help you learn proper form to help you prevent further injuries. 

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Women with pelvic inflammatory disease may experience lower abdominal pain, issues with urination, abnormal bleeding, and other issues. It is a common occurrence with those that get a sexually transmitted disease when bacteria enter the body. It is important to work with your primary care physician as well as a physical therapy when working through this condition. 

Treating Endometrioses

Nearly one in every 10 women suffer from endometriosis, a condition where tissue that lines the uterus expands to other parts of the body. It can grow on a variety of organs in the pelvic region causing painful menstrual cycles, fatigue, heavier periods, nausea, pain during sex, and difficulty conceiving. A physical therapist will help a woman suffering from endometriosis strengthen the pelvic area, leading to relief in a variety of ways. It is important for women to understand their endometriosis and using a Denver women’s health expert to treat. 

There is no reason to live with pain, visit the office of Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness to treat your issues. Our team of talented physical therapists will help you live a happier, pain-free life. Contact Peak PT & Wellness today to find a location near you.