Three Common Health Problems Women Over 40 Didn’t Know Physical Therapy Can Help
Men get most of the credit, but everybody knows women make the world go ‘round. Whether you’re putting in extra hours to work towards to your next promotion, running around after three kids in five different directions, or spending your pre-retirement years shaping your office’s you-20-years-ago, it’s hard to make time for yourself. Unfortunately, even Superwoman can’t save the world if she has constant back pain or is always in the bathroom. Physical therapy offers many solutions to keep women happy and healthy. If you’re experiencing any of the following problems or interested in learning more about physical therapy for women’s health, Rue and Primavera can help.
If locating the nearest bathroom is your sixth sense:
Physical Therapy to improve bladder control
Do you plan your commute around bathroom breaks and shudder at the thought of a middle airplane seat? Studies show 68 percent of women ages 42-64 experience urinary incontinence at least once per month. Frequent urges to go to the bathroom, bladder control issues when coughing, sneezing, and laughing, and frequent accidents are all indicators of incontinence and pelvic floor weakness.
We don’t want trips to the bathroom running your life. At Rue and Primavera, we use a system called Biofeedback to reduce symptoms and strengthen your pelvic floor. This process electronically monitors automatic body function to give you better control of your body’s activity. We’ve used this treatment to help hundreds of women improve bladder control and stop planning their days around bathroom breaks.
If you’re sick of taking Tylenol and wishing the pain away:
Physical Therapy to reduce pelvic pain:
Many women experience discomfort around their periods, but frequent and recurrent pain is reason to seek medical attention. Endometriosis, Fibroids, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, and urinary problems are some common reasons for pelvic pain in women over 40.
Physical therapy can help alleviate pelvic pain regardless of the cause. Physical therapists can help find the root of your pain, then find the best solution to make it go away.
If achy bones are keeping you from feeling strong and standing tall:
Physical Therapy for osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a medical condition characterized by low bone density, bone weakness, and loss of tissue. It’s often caused by hormonal changes and vitamin deficiencies. More than half of Americans over 50 experience osteoporosis and women are significantly more likely to develop the disease than men.
People with osteoporosis are more likely to suffer from broken bones and have difficulty healing, slouching posture, and limited mobility. Physical therapy can offer both preventative and curative solutions for osteoporosis. At Rue and Primavera, we focus on improving bone strength and improving posture to keep you moving and keep your bones strong.
Take action, feel better
We believe in a world with happy, healthy women living their best lives. That’s why one of Rue and Primavera’s primary goals is to offer a variety of solutions to female health problems and improve women’s health on Whidbey Island and beyond. We’d love to start a conversation about how we can start helping you, so let’s get in touch.
The number of knowledge workers – or non-routine cognitive employees in the U.S. workforce – is rising at a rapid pace. Unfortunately, workplace health and wellness isn’t keeping pace with the number of people working in front of a computer screen for the majority of their days. It’s estimated that by the year 2030, more than half of all American adults will be obese. Aside of company-wide wellness programs and fitness initiatives, it’s important that employees take their personal wellness while on the job very seriously. Studies have shown that leading a sedentary lifestyle can have serious implications for your expected lifespan, mental wellbeing, and everyday mood, further enforcing the importance of keeping an active, energetic daily routine no matter your professional or area of expertise.
While it can be difficult to implement a truly ergonomic and movement-friendly solution to an existing office or workplace, there are plenty of strategies to keep moving throughout the day and stay motivated to change your lifestyle for the better.
1. Change Up Your Posture
The results are in: sitting kills. Staying in the same position throughout the work day won’t only have an impact on your midsection, but the company’s bottom line may also suffer as a result of your lack of movement. A weak core isn’t the only downside, though – studies have shown that circulation, muscle tension, and organ damage can result due to long-term immobility and poor posture. Experts say that sitting upright with relaxed shoulders, elbows at a 90-degree angle, and feet flat on the floor is the best posture to help avoid aches, pains, and development of more chronic conditions in the future.
2. Be Mobile in Work Mode
Some workplaces encourage in-person meetings and communiques to help boost employee movement throughout the day. Even if you have a small group meeting or a team check-in, try and make the meeting mobile, taking a loop around the office, block or neighborhood to keep everyone active and engaged.
3. Do Errands
If your schedule and your office environment are conducive to it, try squeezing in a few errands around town during the workday or on your lunch break. A quick trip to the bank, post office, or grocery store won’t just get you up and moving, it’ll help you conquer your to-do list and better focus on your professional workflow throughout the day.
Just because it doesn’t involve movement doesn’t mean it’s not helpful to your general wellbeing. Meditation in the workplace is becoming more and more prevalent and for good reason. Studies have shown that those who take 10-15 minutes on a daily basis to sit quietly and process their thoughts perform better at work, miss less time due to illness, and feel more productive. Furthermore, those who meditate are also more averse to pain, less likely to develop heart disease, and have a stronger immune system compared to a control group.
5. Switch to a Standing Desk or Stability Ball
Getting up and walking around aren’t the only things you could be doing to protect your health at work. Many companies have wellness and health programs designed to supplement a greater effort in wellbeing and health, budgeting for workplace upgrades such as standing desks, ergonomic improvements for spine and posture support, and exercise or stability balls to help improve balance and posture throughout the day.
6. Try Calisthenics
A bodyweight strengthening routine performed a few times throughout a standard workday can provide tremendous benefits to your overall health and general physique. Calisthenics, a form of bodyweight exercise, requires no equipment and can be performed virtually anywhere, burning fat and helping to improve posture, flexibility, and functional everyday movements. This is a good introduction to the basics of calisthenics that you can adopt in your daily routine.
7. Set a Goal, Hit a Number
Wearable technology has made keeping track of daily fitness a breeze, if not a complete afterthought. Fitbits are the clear leaders in this field, but Apple, Microsoft, and Nike all have technology-driven fitness wearables and software to track daily dietary intake, number of steps walked, stairs climbed, calories burned, and more.
If you’re concerned about the amount of physical activity you’re getting at work or are otherwise suffering from repetitive stress injuries such as carpal tunnel, contact Rue and Primavera in Whidbey Island to begin correcting imbalances, weaknesses, and body tensions.
Your hands are constantly at work, and they are an integral part of everything you do! But our hands can be injured or limited by painful joint pain such as arthritis, significantly reducing your ability to move and function in everyday life.
Arthritis and joint pain affects millions of people around the world. In the U.S. alone, more than 52.5 million adults report having doctor-diagnosed arthritis, and it is estimated that by the year 2040, about 78 million adults will have doctor-diagnosed arthritis. Many people can’t or don’t want to use medication to relieve the extreme (sometimes debilitating) pain caused by arthritis, and studies have found that a hands-on approach can naturally relieve arthritis pain symptoms.
This hands-on approach is known as hand therapy, where an occupational or physical therapist will perform rehabilitative, manual therapy to the hands and upper extremities. According to an article from altMD.com, “Hand therapy helps to maintain movement through hand exercises … It offers acute or chronic pain management techniques, desensitization as a result of nerve injury or trauma, sensory re-education following a nerve injury, a personalized exercise program designed to increase dexterity and manual strength, and most importantly, an opportunity to retrain a person to handle the tasks of everyday life—any household or personal task, whether it is personal hygiene care, or vacuuming, or washing dishes.”
Hand therapy incorporates a variety of techniques such as mobilization and stimulation of soft tissues, hand exercises, re-training, stretching and even splinting to help you regain comfort and functionality in your hands, pain-free!
The benefits of hand therapy for arthritis treatment are particularly notable:
Back pain can be one of the most debilitating problems that individuals can experience. The spine is so central to overall functionality, and back pain in some areas can restrict or even prohibit movement. About 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain; low back pain is the most common.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Back pain is the leading cause of disability in Americans under 45 years old. More than 26 million Americans between the ages of 20-64 experience frequent back pain.”
Back pain is exhausting, but also makes it difficult to sleep. Debilitating pain in your back affects your ability to do housework, and is one of the most common reasons for missed work. Individuals who suffer from chronic back pain often face frustration from their supervisor or employer for missed work, and their loved ones feel helpless to relieve their pain. Then, the depression sets in.
I see it all the time. If only we could see you before it gets to this point. Once you have pain shooting all the way down your leg, it means that a nerve is being compressed. Nerve pain is awful. I know, I have had it. But I knew what to do early on to stop it in its tracks. That is what I want to do for you, and I can give you tools and exercises that you can do on your own at home to relieve and treat back pain.
Now, if you do have pain shooting down your legs, we can still help. I do not believe in “No
pain, no gain.” I believe in “No pain, huge gain!” Your treatment and exercises should not be painful. They should be pain-relieving and restoring of normal muscle balance.