Incontinence. Even reading that word made you want to turn away. It’s an initial warning sign that the strength of your pelvic floor is compromised in some way and no longer has the strength to hold the contents of the pelvis. The initial symptoms are leaking urine and can progress to the point of pelvic organ prolapse.
Pelvic health is the conversation no one wants to have, so, unfortunately, incontinence has become all too common. And millions of people are suffering in silence. And with the number of incontinence products and adult diapers popping up in stores, we’ve normalized the issue. But being incontinent at any phase in your life is anything but normal. And people feel hopeless for a solution.
There are several different types of incontinence. I won’t get into the technical definitions here but will describe how you know if you’re experiencing incontinence. If you find yourself leaking every time you...
“Becoming an Old Person in Training makes it easier to think critically about what age means in this society and the forces at work behind depictions of older people as useless and pathetic.” -Ashton Applewhite
When most people talk about aging, they portray this picture of decline. Hold onto this misguided belief the best years are behind them. Sadly the anti-aging message is pervasive in our society. And the increasing rates of social isolation among older adults speaks volumes about our views on aging.
But what if instead, we looked at aging as a time of growth? How drastically does that change this image?
There isn’t something specific about aging that causes a state of decline. Your beliefs are what cause change with age. Nothing more. By telling ourselves we've gotten "too old to..." we initiate the process of decline. If we'd just admit that yes, we are in fact getting older, embrace this fact, and view aging as an opportunity for further growth we’d...
In recent years, research continues to find that physical mobility is one of the strongest indicators of the risk of chronic disease as we age. In hospitals around the country, staff members at all levels are being trained to help screen patients for mobility upon admission and before their return to home. Walking is now considered a 6th vital sign and physicians are increasingly encouraged to screen their patients for their walking ability.
In the clinic, we often aren’t seeing clients until they’re having a problem with their mobility. It’s our mission to make sure everyone has an awareness of subtle warning signs before there’s a problem. Upon every initial assessment, we screen our clients for 5 natural movements that give us a comprehensive picture of their mobility and help them guide their course of action.
Below is the list of movements we perform at every initial assessment. If you can perform the 5 below movements AND maintain your...
A common theme I’ve noted in my work as a physical therapist is a loss of confidence in all areas of life that usually accompanies a decline in physical function, particularly in adults over the age of 60.
Once it happens, it leads to a long road rebuilding this confidence and often leaves those it happens to never getting back to the place they were before.
And it makes so much sense. A loss of physical abilities leads to difficulty leaving home, participating in much-loved activities, and creating a dependency on others for survival. This quickly leads to a feeling of isolation, depression, and loneliness which further perpetuates the cycle of decline.
So, armed with this information how can you prevent this from happening in your future?
On one hand, it’s not entirely possible to prevent every medical event. Even those who make all the right lifestyle choices can still end up with a chronic condition. On the other hand, however, we can all choose how we...
Think you can’t find enough time in your day to exercise? You’re likely just missing out on opportunities to move more throughout your day without changing much.
Try out any one of these movement tips to get more action out of your day!
The other night, I was watching my one-year-old son attempt to pick up a garden hose in the backyard. Starting in a deep squat, he kept trying to stand up with an object that was heavy relative to his size. Standing unsupported is a skill he's yet to master, and here he was trying this unknown skill to him. After about 50 tries, he finally got it and I'll never forget that smile on his face.
Chronic pain is the leading cause of disability in the United States, with an annual cost estimated to be about $100 billion. These costs are associated with healthcare expenses, lost income, and lost productivity. A majority of adults experience acute pain at least once in their lives with about 28% later developing chronic pain.
With the nation’s growing opioid epidemic, there's been considerable emphasis on understanding the sources of chronic pain. Many mistakenly believe that tissue damage is directly correlated with a person’s risk of developing chronic pain. Statements from medical professionals to their patients which include “Your MRI shows that you have the spine of an 80 year old and you can expect to be in pain for the rest of your life” or “just avoid stairs or squatting entirely if your knees are hurting” just further exacerbate the myths surrounding chronic pain.
There is much confusion regarding body alignment, movement, and pain...
Do you understand the health benefits of exercise but have always struggled to maintain a routine?
Or do you not know where to get started in the first place?
If this sounds like you, you are in the right place!
If you struggle with exercise, it's possible to get more movement in your day with a few simple adjustments to your surroundings. And to illustrate this point, I will start with a story about a broken kitchen appliance.
About a month ago our food processor broke. Panic ensued. It was a much-loved kitchen appliance, one that we use daily for dishes like pesto and hummus.
Rather than running out to buy a new one, however, we decided to see what would happen if we didn't replace it. At least not right away. It seems like an unconventional choice when we live in a world where we can replace anything instantly, but stay with me here.
We used a little creativity to find ways to accomplish the...
Do you wake up feeling stiff every morning?
Does it take an hour or two after waking up for that feeling to go away?
Or does that feeling linger all day?
One of the most common questions we get asked is if this is a natural part of aging. Our clients wonder if this is just inevitable or if there is something that can be done to prevent this.
We're here to tell you this DOES NOT have to be a natural part of aging, and that yes, there is plenty you can to avoid waking up with that feeling every morning!
Flexibility, also known as range of motion, can be improved and maintained at any age. Our tissues get stiff because we stop using them, not just because of old age.
We need to take a closer look though because only working on flexibility is not a great solution either. It's vital to keep a good range of motion of all of our joints as we age, but to function at our best we must also have the strength to control our...
How much time do you spend thinking about how you move throughout the day? If you're not getting the health results you want as you age, your movement is likely a huge factor!
Movement really comes down to a matter of convenience. Today, moving more to accomplish daily tasks is viewed as an inconvenience.
We now have access to devices serving the sole purpose of making our lives easier, from electronic kitchen appliances, to phones, to vehicles. These devices externalize the work of our muscles, effectively outsourcing the work of our body. And we tend to rely more and more on these devices as we age.
“Upgrading” our products results in doing less work throughout the day. This is promoted by advertisers as a sign of status, progress, and luxury. A device that results in less work is the ultimate end goal and this message is thrown at us from every direction.
However, these "conveniences" come with a major downside...
Humans were intended to move. Our movement...