Physical Therapy can be the best and life-changing treatment for people who have been suffering a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). A TBI is determined when an injury to the brain damages or changes the way it works. Hits to the head, car accidents and falls are the most frequent cases of TBI and many of those injuries are initially determined as a concussion.
It’s typically only when changes in routine or physical capacity appear that a traumatic brain injury is recognized. It’s not only football players and soldiery personnel that can sustain a TBI.
Children under age four are likely to falls and cover injuries during play or as the result of some kind of harm. Even a “mild” injury is a kind of traumatic brain injury.
Indications vary broadly depending upon the location of the injury and the part of the brain that’s affected. Patients may need to relearn how to perform tasks others take for granted.
Physical Therapy Benefits for Traumatic Brain Injury
Those with a Traumatic Brain Injury may have problems turning over in the area or keeping balance while meeting, holding or walking.
Patients may feel weakness in the neck or limbs and even have difficulties sleeping down in bed. Physical Therapy New York, NY can help traumatic brain injury patients with:
– Increasing Stability, Coordination, and Security
– Improved alertness and attention
– Muscle power, versatility and mobility
– Increased injury levels and less weakness
– More normal movement designs
– A reaction to health, sports and recreational assistance
Traumatic brain injuries can create a wide range of signs. People may become more painful to touch, light and noise. Differences in behavior and emotional answers are simple.
People may have trouble managing their sentiments and experience exciting confusion. The differences may be so dramatic that the patient may not even look like the same person to loved ones.
A traumatic brain injury can occur in a coma from the time of impression. Depending upon the severity of the injury to the brain, patients can need important recovery but still be incapable to respond to their regular work or complete functionality. Traumatic brain injury is more popular than many people think and is ranked as a severe public health problem.
Experienced physical therapists can help with knowledge and credentials for security devices and things to reduce the potential for a traumatic brain injury. They give the best therapy and recovery for your symptoms if a traumatic brain injury occurs. Specific exercise and stretching plans will be increased to help sustain physical capacity, flexibility, variety of movement and coordination.
What are Hamstring Injuries?
There are three hamstring muscles that connect the pelvis to the leg: semitendinosus, semimembranosus, and biceps femoris. These muscles are responsible for straightening the hip and bending the knee.
A hamstring injury can occur when the muscles are being stretched out excessively. This often occurs during high-speed running with sudden starts or changes in direction. Other factors may include sprinting, hurdling, kicking, or heavy lifting.
People with prior hamstring strains are prone to recurring symptoms. Hamstring weakness, increasing age, muscle tightness, inadequate warmup before exercising, and overworking are all risk factors for injury.
How Can a Physical Therapist Help?
If patients are experiencing pain/discomfort, he/she should avoid aggravating activities like walking or working out. It’s important to not overstress the area before symptoms exacerbate. A therapist may advise you to ice at home 3 to 4 times a day to bring down the inflammation.
A physical therapist will work with the patient to design an individualized treatment plan based on the patient’s injury, pain, and goals. Each treatment plan may include manual therapy, range of motion exercises, strengthening exercises, and functional training that are safe and appropriate for recovery.
In severe cases where surgery is inevitable, physical therapy can provide consistent postoperative care. Hamstring injuries are quite challenging to overcome because of their high incidence rate, slow rate of healing, and persistent symptoms.
In fact, subsequent injuries from returning to a sport or physical activity are more severe than the original. Because of this, it is essential for patients to comply to a program.
Can this Injury or Condition be prevented?
Here are some precautions patients can take:
– Warmup before performing demanding activities.
– Gradually increase the frequency and intensity of an activity.
– Perform exercises to strengthen hamstring muscles.
– Listen to the body! Stretch and use ice after a workout if needed.
Physical therapy is one of the most common treatments for hamstring strains, helping to One such physical therapy technique, known as deep stripping massage, can be used in combination with other commonly used treatment.
The impacts of deep stripping massage effects in an improved hamstring length in less than three minutes, increasing flexibility, but do not affect the durability of the muscle.
The use of kinesiology strip, a type of elastic adhesive, has also shown to be effective at recovering muscle flexibility and decrease the chance of pain.
This method is essentially equal to human skin in both thickness and flexibility and is generally used by professionals for managing injuries and the different types of physical ailments.
To give yourself the best chance of stopping hamstring injuries in the first place, it is a great approach to heat up and stretch before any type of physical activity. Improve the strength of your exercise slowly, as going too hard too fast improves the possibilities of muscle injury exponentially.
Stop exercising as soon as you feel you may have hurt yourself. Finally, concentrate on strengthen exercises to help increase your muscle strength. Healing hamstring damages or the majority of muscle pains for that thing can be much harder than preventing them in the first place.
By holding to the suggestions and recommendations outlined in this article, you can be sure that you are working to the best of your strength while maintaining your safety in mind.
Ultrasound is a long heating therapy that can help increase circulation and extensibility during the injured muscles of your hamstring. Your PT may use this treatment although analysis shows that the use of healing ultrasound in musculoskeletal treatments may not allow the benefit that was once considered.
Massaging the injured muscle can help promote injury mass movement.
Electrical stimulation may be used to achieve various goals during your hamstring rehab. Your PT may use e-stim to improve manage your pain, reduce injury or improve the way your hamstring muscle contracts.
Some physical therapists use kinesiology taping methods to help enhance the way your hamstring muscle functions. It can also be used to reduce swelling and beating around your hamstring muscles. There is insufficient research about the use of K-tape, so consider the use of this modality with your therapist.
After difficult hamstring strains, you may be needed to walk with crutches while things are healing. Your PT should inform you how to walk well and how to progress from using an assistive device to walking normally.
Ice may be utilized during the critical stage of pain to manage swelling and to reduce pain that you are feeling.
Your physical therapist may use moistened heat packs to help relax your hamstring muscles and to increase muscle extensibility before stretching.
The most significant treatment your therapist can offer you is a healing activity. Your PT will guide special activities for you to do in the clinic, and a home activity plan will possible be appointed for you to do regularly. This assists you get power of your hamstring strain rehab and sets you in the driver’s seat with your responsibility.
Exercises for a hamstring strain may include:
Static and dynamic hamstring stretching exercises can help to enhance the way your hamstring functions. Remember, the damaged tissue creates injury tissue as it is healing, and one of the best ways to improve this tissue is with the action that happens with stretching. While stretching, you should assume a stretch or tear in the injury site, but it should respond to your baseline responding within moments of holding the stretch.
Lower extremity strengthening workouts
After a hamstring strain, your PT may guide strengthening exercises for your hamstrings and the surrounding muscles. Exercises should begin slow and be painless. As your injury improves, you can progress to more intense strengthening exercises.
Hip and core strengthening exercises
Analysis shows that having your bones and essence tissues strong can be an efficient way to return to normal activity after a hamstring strain. Excellent bone growing and effective inside strengthening may be ordered through your hamstring rehab.
Agility tools including jumping and dancing. As your rehab improves, your PT may have you interlace in extra superior activity tools such as hopping and jumping. Learning to jump and land properly can help protect your hamstrings (and other lower extremity joints and muscles) from injury as you return to active participation in sports.
Stability and Proprioception Activities
Struggling to manage suitable balance and lower extremity awareness may be a part of your hamstring strain rehab. This can help assure that your tissues are running properly to retain your bones, knees, and ankles in the right position while walking, jogging, and dancing.
No time for the gym but still want to be healthy and stay in shape? Well, bodyweight exercises can benefit you! Even without additional weight, these exercises can build strength, muscle, and fitness while helping people lose weight. The goal is to use your own body weight as resistance, by pushing, pulling, or lifting it. And if you don’t have time, don’t worry! These exercises can be done whenever and wherever.
Your physical therapist will most likely include body weight exercises into your treatment program. He/she will cater the regimen to the specific condition at hand. Such exercises include strength training to build muscle and cardio to keep the heart strong.
Based on the patient’s starting point and age, the therapist will determine the pace of each session with the quantity of exercises and how many repetitions to perform. With body weight exercises, patients can complete their full range of motion without restraint, allowing joints to move freely and decreasing the risk of injury. You’ll be able do these exercises at home with little to no cost, as equipment is not needed.
Bodyweight exercises are considered “closed chain” which is the scientific term for saying moving the body through space instead of an outside object. Closed chain exercises have been proven to increase lower body strength by 31%, whereas, open chain exercises only increases it by 13%. The reason is because moving the body through space increase the amount of muscle fibers used. Thereby, yielding more results.
If you’ve been sitting at your desk all day, it’s probably best to not go and sit down on a machine at the gym once again. Body weight physical therapy helps patients reestablish good movements. It allows movement in multiple ways that can activate muscles in the back, knees, and shoulders, thereby, keeping them healthy. This may be a better alternative to machines that can be limiting.
Examples of bodyweight exercises include planks, push-ups, squats, sit-ups, marching, and lunges. Since physical therapists are professionals in body movement, it’s best to consult one to see which exercises are appropriate for you when dealing with an injury.
The shoulder is one of the most common body part in which injuries take place. There are multiple underlying conditions that can cause pain and limitations on movement. Shoulder problems can be obtained in many ways such as a fall, strain from reaching an object, or injury from sports.
However, most conditions emerge over time from overuse or simply aging. If left untreated, minor irritations and symptoms can exacerbate and become greater, more limiting problems that are harder to treat.
Common types of shoulder pain include:
- Tendonitis/Tendinopathy: This condition results in the inflammation of a tendon causing motions such as reaching up or across the body to become painful. If left untreated, it can progress into a “frozen shoulder,” where the person loses some or all of his/her normal range of motion.
- Bursitis: Bursitis occurs when the fluid filled sac (bursa) that cushions the tendons and joints, become irritated or inflammed. It may lead to symptoms such as pain and stiffness.
- Impingement: Another condition that can lead to inflammation and pain is impingement of the tendons and bursa by surrounding bones. These symptoms can limit everyday activities such as reaching overhead, lifting, or carrying objects.
- Rotator Cuff Injury: This occurs when the muscles that aide in movement weaken or tear causing weakness, pain, and limited range of motion.
- Arthritis: Arthritis can also cause stiffness and pain during motion. This condition causes the tissue or cartilage that protects the joints to wear down.
- Postural Dysfunction: Using computers or sitting for extended periods can lead to muscle imbalances in the shoulder which can progress to pain and injury.
Physical Therapy for Shoulder Pain
Although some injuries may require surgery to fix the “damages”, physical therapy alone can be used as treatment. In fact, shoulder pain physical therapy is effective in treating most shoulder conditions and injuries.
During the initial evaluation, the physical therapist will conduct a series of tests and assessments to determine the appropriate diagnosis and treatment plan. They may measure the patient’s strength, range of motion, evaluate his/her posture, and/or perform screening tools to pinpoint the exact area of injury.
The best treatment plans are individualized to each patient based on their needs and pain level. They may include exercises to increase strength, mobility, and flexibility, which are important factors in preventing the development of chronic shoulder issues.
The physical therapist may also use passive treatments such as a cold or hot pack, electrical stimulation, and/or ultrasound to alleviate pain and increase blood flow to the area. They may also conduct manual therapy such as mobilization or massage if deemed appropriate.
Since many shoulder conditions have the ability to become more severe, it’s important to seek help right away. Physical therapy may lasts between several weeks to several months depending on the condition and whether the patient underwent surgery. It’s important to adhere to the treatment plan and remain committed to obtain optimal results and faster return to normal routine.
Hip pain can occur on the outside of your hip, upper thigh, or outer buttock from problems with any muscles, ligaments, tendons, and other soft tissues surrounding the hip joint. It can be felt in simple functional activities such as walking, running; sit to stand, and climbing stairs, therefore, limiting our daily lives.
There are many factors that can cause hip pain including physical injuries, previous injuries, repetitive use, pregnancy, strenuous physical activities, age, and musculoskeletal conditions. Even the type of shoes a person wears can lead to hip pain.
Lateral hip pain (on the outside) is a common category of hip problems experienced by patients. One possible cause for this can be Trochanteric Bursitis, a condition where the bursa, the fluid filled sac that cushions the joints and tendons connecting the gluteal muscles to the great trochanter, becomes irritated or inflamed. It can lead to an onset of symptoms such as pain, limited movement, and weakness of the hip muscles.
However, the most common cause for lateral hip pain is tendinopathy of the gluteus medius and minimus tendons. This condition can lead to tenderness on palpation and pain over the lateral hip and gluteal region when moving or exercising. Although some symptoms may appear mild, they can become severe over time with further agitation, therefore, it’s important to seek help right away. This can lead to a faster recovery time as well.
Arthritis, tendonitis, and muscle strains can also be possible factors. With arthritis, the hip joint becomes worn out resulting in hip, groin, or lower back pain, or even pain going down the leg. This condition can be caused by factors such as injury, repetition of movement, or aging. Tendonitis and muscle strains are caused by inflammation of the muscles and tendons surrounding the hip joint.
Physical Therapy Treatment
A physical therapist may first evaluate the patient’s gait to notice any abnormalities in hip movement during different phases of walking. They may continue with palpation, by touching various structures around the hip to locate the source of the pain.
They may also measure range of motion and strength to help direct treatment and to see if any muscle weakness or imbalance is causing the pain. The therapist may also ask if the pain interferes with daily activities such as walking, climbing stairs, or walking. He/she will take these observations and responses into consideration and create a treatment plan.
Treatments will vary for each person based on their needs and the severity of their condition. A treatment plan may include various manual techniques, appropriate modalities such as heat, ice, ultrasound, and/or electrical stimulation, and specific exercises as the patient progresses.
The hip pain physical therapy program would focus on decreasing or eliminating pain, increasing range of motion, and increasing strength. Overall, the goal is to help patients return to their normal functioning mobility so they are able to resume their daily lives.
Ever get a painful or uncomfortable clicking in your jaw while chewing? Or stiffness as soon as you wakes up in the morning? If you do, you may have problems with your temporomandibular joint.
The TMJ is located where the mandible (jaw) meets the skull. A thin disc separates the bones and it aids the mouth in opening and closing. When it becomes loose, it can shift more than usual resulting in a clicking or popping sensation. In the worst case scenario, the disc can get stuck causing the mouth to remain locked open.
Another factor in developing problems with temporomandibular joint is Arthritis as the disease can damage the cartilage within the joint. The most common symptoms people with TMJ dysfunction experience are pain and limited movement of the jaw joint and surrounding muscles.
TMJ dysfunction is more prevalent among the younger population and 5 to 12 percent of Americans may suffer from this disorder. It’s important to treat temporomandibular joint dysfunction before symptoms exacerbates because it can interfere with diet and sometimes require surgery to fix. Physical therapy is a great route in potentially correcing many problems that can arise from temporomandibular joint.
The physical therapist will start by evaluating the degree of the condition. They may ask you questions about type and duration of muscle, joint, and facial pain, any difficulty with chewing, and any clicking or popping sound present. Manual therapy can be very effective as it helps decrease muscle, joint, and facial pain as well as frequency of spasms.
With this information, they can determine a treatment plan by using a combination of stretching, joint mobilization, soft and deep tissue release, and/or modalities to increase the range of motion and strength of the joint.
They may educate patients on techniques they can practice and good habits to adapt in order to regain normal jaw function. The physical therapist can also help post-operational patients by minimizing scar tissue and tightness of the surrounding muscles.
Good Habits to Remember
- Posture: Be aware of your posture in any setting where you tend to hold your head forward and slouch your shoulders (i.e. sitting in front of the computer or in your car).
- Diet and Chewing Changes: Cut your food into small amounts and stray from opening your mouth wider than the thickness of your thumb. Avoid food that would require prolonged chewing (i.e. gum). Chew your food with your molars instead of your front teeth.
Tongue Positioning: Produce a clucking sound by positioning your tongue on the hard palate of the mouth. Placing the tongue in its resting position can provide muscle relaxation and appropriate nasal breathing which aids in reducing pain.
Postural dysfunction, also known as “poor posture”, occurs when we position our spine in unnatural positions such as rounding our shoulders and protruding the head. This can place great stress on the vertebrae as well as the joints and muscles in the surrounding area. It’s important to correct our posture before too much pressure accumulates leading to the onset of more pain.
Essentially our body is designed for movement. It’s not meant to stay stagnant for long but today, more and more people are adapting stationary lifestyles and habits (i.e. sitting at work for long hours, watching television, or using the computer).
As technology continues to boom, more time is spent looking down at phones and tablets causing our bodies to maintain a flexed posture far longer than what’s appropriate. In fact, the ideal stance is where the ears, shoulders, hips, knees, and ankles should be aligned.
A number of factors can cause posture problems including:
- Muscle Tightness: If a muscle continues to be shortened, it will eventually accommodate that position by becoming shorter. For instance, sitting for long periods can cause our hip flexors to shorten, thus, interfering with our gait and causing a flexed forward posture.
- Muscle Weakness: If a muscle continues to be lengthened, it will eventually become weak due to overuse. For instance, sitting for long periods can cause our gluteus Maximus muscle to lengthen which increases the possibility of atrophy. This can cause lower back pain and less hip mobility, ultimately leading to poor posture when we stand.
- Soft Tissue Shortening or Adhesions: When a joint remains immobile, it can become stiff and lose some of it’s range of motion.
- Poor Neuromuscular Control: Injury can alter neuromuscular control, thus, affecting joint stability and posture.
- Inflammation: Inflammation can cause muscle spasms, guarding, and changes in posture.
How can physical therapy help?
Postural Dysfunction Physical therapy is a great method to correct poor posture and restore proper balance. A physical therapist will observe your posture and educate you on good habits to maintain. Most treatment plans concentrate on reducing compensations and strains while aiming towards the optimal load on muscles and soft tissues.
You may also receive an exercise prescription to strengthen specific muscles and to correct body alignment. It’s important to note that’s everyone’s body is designed and shaped differently; therefore, every treatment plan will be individualized to meet goals and needs.
Your treatment plan may include:
- Assessment and diagnosis of postural habits
- Postural education and training
- Manual therapy and soft tissue massage
- Joint mobilization
- Postural taping
- Corrective exercises and movements to improve flexibility, strength, and posture
- Activity modification advice
- Advice regarding ergonomic work stations
Gait defines our manner of walking and any correlated dysfunctions can deviate our walking from the norm. They can transpire from several underlying medical disorders including ones that involve the inner ear, Parkinson’s disease, muscular dystrophy, arthritis, neuropathy, stroke, vertigo, multiple sclerosis, disc problems, and musculoskeletal abnormalities such as fractures.
The onset of gait and balance problems is very common as we grow older. It’s important to treat this issue as it could lead to falling, one of the major causes of injury among the elderly population.
Most treatment plans for balance and gait physical therapy abnormalities involves exercises to strengthen the lower extremities. The main goal is to build up muscle back to its original state or above so the patient can perform activities of daily living without difficulties.
The physical therapist will individualize the treatment program based on the patient’s needs, goals, and how much they can tolerate without injury or onset of pain. Every program would be catered to the patient’s specific condition. The best exercise programs will be changed routinely based on the patient’s progress to optimize muscle strength and balance.
Your treatment may include:
- Pre-Gait Training. Your physical therapist may ask you to perform simple activities that can help improve your gait such as standing on one leg, marching in place, and walking heel first.
- Gait Training. Your physical therapist will observe, educate, and help you retrain your gait. Since an underlying vestibular, neurological, or muscular condition may be present, training will differ from patient to patient. Also, if your doctor requires you to use crutches after a surgery, your physical therapist will teach you how to use them properly while walking and using the stairs. Ultimately, the program will be modified to ensure the safest training.
- Balance and Coordination Training. Your exercise prescription may include balance activities to help stabilize your walking pattern.
- Neuromuscular Reeducation. If any inactive or weak muscle groups are affecting your gait, your therapist may enforce neuromuscular reeducation techniques to activate them.
- Bracing or Splinting. If your gait dysfunction is caused by the weakness or paralysis of a ligament, your physical therapist may teach you how to use adaptive equipment, like a brace, splint, or cane, to help you move.
The neck bears a considerable amount of weight; as much as one-seventh of the body’s weight! It’s one of the most unrestrained body parts but pain in this area can limit our range severely. Many people try to alleviate their symptoms by taking pain killers; however, this does not stop the pain from returning. Instead, the best solution is to locate and treat the underlying problem and physical therapy is great in doing just that.
Signs and Symptoms
Neck pain can affect any age group and it ranges from a dull ache to a sharp, intense pain. In more severe cases, it can travel to the arms, shoulders, upper back, chest, and head. In fact, the most common complaint is pain occurring in the form of a headache.
Neck problems can also prevent movement because of muscle stiffness, tenderness, and tension. This can limit our participation in activities of daily living such as looking down to read a book and turning our head to look behind our shoulders.
Types of Neck Pain
The source of most neck pain is strained neck muscles. People can place stress onto the area with the most simplest of actions. Common ways that cause strains, sprains, or spasms include poor posture, looking down at your phone, carrying a heavy bag, and sleeping in an odd position.
Falling or whiplash is another way to cause the problem. For instance, in a car accident, your neck may go backward and then forward, in a whip like motion, a movement likely to harm the area. Other impact or force-related trauma can cause similar injuries.
If muscle knots, tension, or stiffness is left untreated, it can lead to chronic neck pain that lasts for three or more months. It’s capable of spreading to the following areas: shoulders, chest, upper back, and/or arms causing weakness, tingling, and/or numbness to develop.
Thus, it’s important to address neck pain in its early stages before it exacerbates and limit our mobility even more. Apart from physical, additional symptoms of chronic pain include fatigue, depression, and anxiety.
Physical therapy treatment for neck pain may include:
- Applying ice, heat, and/or electrical stimulation
- Muscle energy technique
- Joint mobilization and soft tissue massage
- Cervical traction (light stretching of the neck)
- Postural corrections as well as ergonomics consultation
- Strength and stretching exercises
- Neural mobilization
Neck Stretches: It’s optimal to include stretching exercises in the treatment plan to increase range of motion and flexibility of the cervical joints. It can also relieve the stiffness that accompanies the pain.
Neck Strengthening: Strengthening exercises can improve posture, which in turn decreases recurrent flare-ups of pain.
Aerobic Conditioning: Aerobic exercises can benefit blood flow to the neck and upper back muscles and soft tissues, thus, loosening the muscles and increasing range of motion. Also, after 30 minutes of cardio, our body naturally produces endorphins, a “painkiller” that can help relieve symptoms.
A motor vehicle accident can be something that will change your day or your life. It is very important that injured victim takes professional help after accident.
Physical therapist is one the key provider in treating many motor vehicle accident injuries. Physical therapy can help to promote healing, decrease pain, increase flexibility, increase mobility and restore function. Physical therapy also is a preferable option to surgery, which should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.
Most common injuries after car accidents are head injuries, neck and back injuries, chest injuries, contusion, lacerations, organ injuries, fracture, sprain, strain.
Head injuries, injuries to brain can be very severe. Emergency responders will stabilize patient and take them to emergency room to make sure about injuries and extend of injury. Patient might have x-ray, scans, blood work then physician decides treatment plan. Fractures or other life threatening injuries may require hospital stay and or even surgery.
Most common injury is whiplash. Driver or passenger may have neck pain or muscle pain in upper back with or without radicular pain in hand/arm. Weakness in arm can happen in severe cases. This can happen from sudden jerk to neck which moves neck suddenly forward and backward. This causes strain, sprain in muscles. Patient can have disc problem in some cases.
Some patient also develops back pain from sudden jerk and could have numbness and radicular pain in legs if there is disc involvement.
In most cases, Patient will be referred to physical therapy. Physician will refer a patient to physical therapy after car accidents to treat their pain, aches and to get them back to their prior function level.
At New Age Physical Therapy our skilled physical therapist will evaluate your condition and your needs in detail and plan out your treatment which can bring you back to your normal life. Our goal is always to give you quality care and restore your function to prior functional level.