Say No to Sciatica Today with Physical Therapy!

The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the human body. It extends from the lumbar spine through the buttocks area. Sciatica is pain that results from the irritation of the sciatic nerve. Generally, pain is felt in the lumbar area and behind the thigh. The pain can also radiate to the lower limbs. Sciatica can make bending and walking very difficult. The most common cause of sciatica is lumbar disc herniation, but it can be caused by a back injury and disc degeneration. Sciatica is also referred to as lumbar radiculopathy.   Diagnosing and Treating Sciatica Sciatica is diagnosed with a medical history and physical exam. A CT scan or MRI may be performed to locate the root cause of sciatica. According to Move Forward, “Conservative care like physical therapy often results in better and faster results than surgery or pain medication.” A physical therapist will work with you to:  
  • Reduce sciatica pain.
  • Improve motion.
  • Improve flexibility.
  • Increase strength.
  • Educate you on how to stand, bend and twist.
  • Return to normal activities.
  A physical therapist may use several types of treatments to reduce pain and symptoms of sciatica. Active treatments include motions, stretches and specific exercises to accelerate healing and give pain relief. A physical therapist will teach you different motions that you can do at home for pain relief. If a physical therapist discovers any weak muscles, you will be given corrective exercises for core strengthening. The strengthening exercises in physical therapy not only focus on the lower back but the abdominal muscles, hip muscles and glutes. All of these exercises help strengthen the spinal column, including the tendons, ligaments and supporting muscles while keeping the spine in proper alignment.   The stretching exercises in physical therapy target muscles that are inflexible and tight. Hamstring stretching is an important part of a physical therapy treatment program to alleviate sciatica. An aquatic exercise program may also be recommended by a physical therapist. You can do exercises easily with the buoyancy of water.   Passive treatments may include electric therapy, heat therapy, ultrasound or massage therapy. All of these different modalities help reduce pain, stimulate blood flow and accelerate healing. Electrotherapy uses electricity to reduce pain, strengthen muscles, ramp up circulation and improve physical function. Massage therapy helps alleviate sciatic nerve pain. It loosens tight back muscles that may be pressing on the sciatic nerve, and it increases the release of endorphins for pain relief. Heat therapy helps relax muscles and reduce inflammation.   All around, physical therapy for sciatica is a non-invasive, multifaceted treatment and an effective treatment plan that is targeted to the root cause of sciatica. A physical therapist will devise a personalized treatment just for you. The goal is to help you live a pain-free life. Say “no” to surgery and opioids with physical therapy.   You can say “no” to sciatica with physical therapy. Plus, you’ll learn how to prevent sciatica in the future by doing home-exercise motions that your physical therapist has taught you for maintenance. By practicing good posture, proper body mechanics and staying in good shape, you can also prevent sciatica from occurring again.   If you’re suffering from sciatica, be sure to give our office a call for a one-on-one consultation with one of our physical therapists. A comprehensive exam will be performed, and our physical therapists will get you on the road to recovery. Get back in the game with physical therapy. You’re just a phone call away from living a pain-free life.

Back & Neck Pain? Physical Therapy Can Help!

Many people have back pain and neck pain. As a matter of fact, studies reveal that 90 percent of people will experience either back pain or neck pain at least once in their lives. It’s not always easy to isolate those regions of the body that are causing back pain or neck pain. Pain can radiate to the arms, legs and even the head. Each episode of pain can progress more, last longer and travel further from its origin. If you figure out the cause, you may wind up needing pain management or even surgery.

The Benefits of Physical Therapy for Back Pain and Neck Pain

Physical therapy for back pain and neck pain is focused on the structures that support the spine, including ligaments, tendons, muscles and joints. Some types of active physical therapy for neck and back pain include specific stretches, exercises, adjustments and even aquatic exercise. The buoyancy of water takes pressure off of the cervical and lumbar spine while you’re performing the exercises.

Passive physical therapy includes different modalities, such as ice and heat therapy, massage therapy, electrotherapy and ultrasound. Ice or heat therapy increases blood flow for healing, reduces swelling and pain and loosens up stiff muscles. Massage therapy relaxes muscles and helps reduce pain. With electrotherapy, electrical impulses are sent to the sensory nerves to alter pain signals. It’s a mildly warm sensation that reduces pain and relaxes muscles.

A Physical Therapist for Neck and Back Pain

Before treatment even begins, a physical therapist will perform an examination to determine the root cause of your back or neck pain. A goniometer may be used to measure your range of motion. A strength test will also be performed. Spinal mobility will be measured along with palpation to locate sore or tight muscles. A full medical history will be taken in addition to your symptoms. You can discuss the things that you are now not able to do. A physical therapist will also ask you to perform certain tasks in order to determine your functional mobility. In sum, a full assessment of your physical condition will be done, and a personalized treatment plan will be created to target the cause of your back or neck pain.

Why a Specific Treatment Plan Is Developed

A specific treatment plan is developed since the cause of your back or neck pain can vary. It may be due to disc herniation, degenerative disc disease, a sports injury, whiplash, osteoarthritis or poor posture. A herniated disc occurs when the gel-like material of the disc bulges or leaks out. Degenerative disc disease occurs when there is wear and tear on the discs. Osteoarthritis is wear and tear on the facet joints and can cause friction when bending, pinch a nerve root and result in sciatica. And it’s not uncommon for athletes to incur sprains and strains to the neck or back regions when engaging in sports.

The good news is that physical therapy has been proven to help with neck pain or back pain regardless of its root cause. If you’re suffering from neck pain or back pain, call our office today to see how physical therapy can help get you back in the game and live a pain-free life. Our physical therapists are certified and experienced. They’ve helped many others and can help you too. 

Contact our Highland, UT physical therapy clinic today and learn how we can get you on the path to recovery. There’s no reason to suffer in pain when we have the solution.

Try Physical Therapy for These 5 Common Causes of Shoulder Pain

Physical therapy is a safe, effective and non-invasive treatment option that is designed to relieve pain resulting from a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions, sports injuries, workplace injuries and more. Regular appointments with a physical therapist are ideal for people of all ages. Patients typically see a physical therapist to help manage chronic pain symptoms and prevent future injury. One of the biggest reasons new patients visit our physical therapist each day is to address chronic shoulder pain. Shoulder pain can be caused by a number of different factors and make completing daily tasks nearly impossible without treatment. If you or a loved one is experiencing shoulder pain, physical therapy can help!

Top 5 Most Common Causes of Shoulder Pain

The average person probably doesn’t give much thought to their shoulders as they go about their day. But your shoulders actually do quite a lot of work to help you complete everyday tasks, and if they become strained or injured, you could be left experience severe shoulder pain. Some of the most common causes of shoulder pain include:

Tendinitis

This is a common condition that causes inflammation in the shoulder area and has been known to send many people straight to the physical therapist for relief. The condition typically affects those who are very physically active or people who work at a job that requires them to complete lots of repetitive motions. For example, if you’re an athlete who plays tennis a lot or you work as a professional painter, you could be at risk of developing tendinitis in your shoulder. If you are at a high risk for tendinitis, it is very important to remember that along with physical therapy, resting your shoulders regularly can help to prevent chronic pain.

Frozen Shoulder

Frozen shoulder typically occurs after an injury or alongside another shoulder condition. Most physical therapists recommend that patients with frozen shoulder get plenty of rest in between physical therapy appointments to avoid developing scar tissue in the shoulder. If scar tissue does develop, the muscles surrounding the shoulder can eventually freeze up as well, restricting your full range of motion and resulting in chronic pain.

Bursitis

The shoulder is a complicated joint that is made up of an intricate network of many moving parts. One of the key components that make up the shoulder is called bursa. The bursa contains tiny sacs of fluid that work to keep the shoulder joint lubricated. If the bursa becomes irritated or inflamed, you can develop bursitis and will need to schedule a physical therapy appointment as soon as possible.

Tendon Tears

The tendons in your shoulder can tear as the result of an acute injury or certain degenerative conditions. Overuse, the natural aging process and sudden injuries often cause the tendons to split or tear. Whether a patient is experiencing partial or a full tendon tear, the pain can be very intense and require regular appointments with our skilled physical therapist.

Impingement

Shoulder impingement can occur when the top part of the shoulder blade puts a great amount of pressure on the underlying soft tissues in the arm each time that it is lifted away from the body. As the arm lifts, the shoulder blade rubs against the tendons and bursa. If left untreated, impingement in the shoulder can result in bursitis and/or tendinitis.

Physical Therapy Can Provide Fast Relief for Shoulder Pain

If you or a loved one have been experiencing recurrent or prolonged shoulder pain, it is important to speak with a physical therapist as soon as possible. Physical therapy is a safe, non-invasive and holistic treatment option that can help patients of all ages and activity levels.

 

Call our offices today at 385-498-3757 or click here to learn more about the benefits of physical therapy and begin your journey toward living a pain-free life!

Relieve Hip and Knee Pain For Good with Physical Therapy!

Both the hips and knees are areas in the body where several muscles, tendons, and joints are joined together to help you achieve complex movement. If there is damage and subsequent pain in these areas, it can be difficult to perform daily activities. There are several specific ways that physical therapy can help relieve hip and knee pain. Call RX Rehab Physical Therapy to find out how a trained physical therapist can help you relieve the pain in your hips and knees!

Common Hip and Knee Conditions

There are several specific conditions that often affect the knees and hips. These conditions can occur due to repetitive motion, traumatic injury, or chronic disease.

  • Arthritis – Arthritis is a condition that involves inflammation of tissues that surround the joints. This condition can cause knee and hip pain. A physical therapist can teach you correct posture and proper movement techniques to protect your joints.
  • Strains & Sprains – Strains happen when a muscle or tendon is stretched excessively or torn. A sprain is a stretched or torn ligament. Ligaments may even rupture, causing bruising, pain and limited mobility. A physical therapist can help you recover more quickly while showing you exercise techniques to reduce pain.
  • Meniscus Tears – This is one of the most common knee injuries people experience. A torn meniscus can cause stiffness, swelling, and varying degrees of pain. This condition could be the result of a sudden injury or repetitive motions. You’re at higher risk if you’re engaging in aggressive pivoting and twisting of your legs. A physical therapist can provide non-surgical treatment for a torn meniscus.
  • Bursitis – Bursitis occurs when a small sac of fluid known as the bursa becomes inflamed. This is often caused by overuse or repetitive injuries. Bursitis can occur in a variety of locations in the body including the knees and hips. Physical therapy can aid in recovery and the reduction of pain.

How Physical Therapy Can Help

No matter what condition you have, a physical therapy program can help relieve your pain. Your physical therapist will evaluate your condition and create an individualized program to meet your specific needs. Range of motion and strength measurements may be taken during the physical therapy evaluation. The following are several treatment methods a physical therapist may use to help limit or relieve both knee and hip pain.

  • Manual Physical Therapy –  A physical therapist might use several hands-on techniques to reduce pain in your hips and knees. This could include stretching exercises or a variety of massage techniques.
  • Heat & Ice Physical Therapy – Heat is often used during physical therapy to help increase mobility and lessen pain. A physical therapist may also use ice to reduce swelling and inflammation.
  • Ultrasound Therapy – A physical therapist may use ultrasound to provide deep heating in the tissues. A trained physical therapist can also more easily identify problem areas by using ultrasound.
  • Laser Therapy – Laser therapy is increasingly being used in physical therapy for pain management. It can help increase circulation, improve the growth and reproduction of cells, and can reduce swelling.
  • Home Exercises – A physical therapist can teach you exercises to do at home to alleviate hip and knee pain. Physical therapy techniques can be incorporated into a home exercise program that can become part of your daily routine.

Physical therapy treatment may be able to help you remain pain-free and as active as possible. A physical therapist can create a customized program to treat your particular condition.

Contact our Highland, UT physical therapy clinic today to schedule an evaluation with an experienced physical therapist. Find out today how physical therapy can reduce or even eliminate your knee or hip pain!

 

5 Ways Physical Therapy can Put the Spring Back in Your Step!

Do you currently have an acute or chronic pain condition affecting your daily life? Maybe you’re struggling with back pain, a sports injury or impairments following an auto accident. Perhaps you have someone in your family who is experiencing pain and dysfunction. Whatever you or your loved ones are facing, we encourage you to contact RX Rehab Physical Therapy to schedule an appointment with a physical therapist.

Our physical therapists are experts in human movement and employ a wide range of drug-free, non-invasive techniques that benefit our patients in many ways — far beyond “just” symptom management. Check out these top five reasons why working with a physical therapist can help you reclaim the healthy, active lifestyle you want and deserve:

1. Pain-relieving techniques used in physical therapy have a low risk of side effects.

Unlike many medications and invasive procedures, physical therapy services have a very low risk of side effects while remaining highly effective for reducing pain, swelling, inflammation and other impairments related to injury, illness, and disease. Physical therapy techniques require less downtime and can be modified and safely used on everyone from infants to seniors.

2. Physical therapy services are completely customizable.

A standard physical therapy plan of care is completely individualized to the patient. The chief aims of any plan of care are to address the patient’s unique goals, resolve his or her impairments, and optimize his or her recovery, functional independence and long-term health. These outcomes can be achieved through physical therapy techniques such as:

  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Manual therapy, like massage and joint mobilizations
  • Neuromuscular re-education, like balance training
  • Modalities, like dry needling, electrical stimulation, ultrasound, diathermy, orthotics and prosthetics fitting, and kinesio taping

After undergoing a thorough examination with your physical therapist, you’ll receive an individualized treatment plan that can accelerate your healing. This plan is modified to meet your specific needs and lifestyle and relies on your feedback throughout the process, giving you a more active role in your recovery.

3. Physical therapy can help you avoid opioids.

The current opioid abuse epidemic in our country suggests that these potentially harmful drugs are frequently overprescribed. The CDC recommends physical therapy before opioids for the management of many types of chronic pain. Plus, treatment techniques used in physical therapy are “evidence-based,” meaning they are tested in scientific research studies in order to determine their efficacy, effectiveness and safety.

4. A physical therapist can identify hidden factors contributing to your dysfunction.

A physical therapist won’t just “mask” your pain. Our therapists identify and resolve underlying factors contributing to your current condition and increasing your risk of chronic issues. Common factors include shortened muscles, scar tissue, range-of-motion limitations, muscle activation problems, impaired ergonomics and body mechanics, and postural imbalances. If factors like these are left unaddressed, your symptom relief would likely be temporary at best.

Through services such as patient education, work-hardening programs and other techniques previously mentioned, a physical therapist can address both symptom and cause.

5. A physical therapist can help you maximize functional mobility, capacity and performance.

A physical therapist helps his or her patients improve endurance, core stability, coordination, agility, and other physical skills that can carry over into better performance in sports and everyday life. This is essential for young active people as well as the older population looking to avoid age-related debility.

 

In other words, our physical therapy team can manage your injury or disease now as well as help prevent injury in the future.

 

Ready to find some long-lasting solutions to your pain? To schedule an appointment with a physical therapist today and get started on your journey back to health and healing, contact our Highland, UT physical therapy clinic today.