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Going on a Cruise This Summer? Don’t Bring Motion Sickness Home With You!

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It’s normal for you to feel as if you’re still at sea once you return home from a cruise. You continue to feel as if the floor is moving and your body is swaying, rocking, and bobbing as you try to sleep or stand in the shower. For most people your sea legs tend to ware off within a day or so. But there are people that suffer from the continual sensation of this sea-like motion for weeks or even longer. This disorder is called mal de debarquement syndrome.

Mal de Debarquement Syndrome

If you do find yourself not getting past the sea sickness, you should talk to your doctor. After taking all things into account they may refer you to an audiologist, an ear, nose and throat specialist, a neurologist, or a physical therapist that specializes in vestibular rehabilitation. Good for you, Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, has lead Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to be experts in vestibular rehabilitation for over 20 years!

Physical Therapy Can Help

Managing mal de debarquement with physical therapy can help to improve balance and reduce dizziness-related symptoms. After a few months on a vestibular program most people feel better and are no longer suffering from the motion sickness sensation. But what if you want to go on a cruise again? Yes, the sea sickness will come back!

A doctor may prescribe medication such as an anti-anxiety drug for a short period of time. But the best course of action to fight mal de debarquement is physical therapy.

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our physical therapists have perfected our vestibular rehabilitation program! Our personalized programs help to shake our patient’s sea legs off. Don’t let this rare disorder hold you back from making memories!

 

Call us to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

1111 W Town and Country Road Ste 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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3 Reasons to Stand Tall – Part 2

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sedentary

We hope you have been checking your posture throughout your day since our Part 1 post! Posture can affect your health in many ways! Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to know 3 ways that poor posture affects your health:

  1. Thoracic outlet syndrome – Poor forward head posture and slouched shoulders restrict nerves and blood flow in the lower neck and upper chest that limits the blood supply to your arms. Patients with thoracic outlet syndrome experience mild tingling and or numbness in the arms, causing pain and bad circulation.
  2. StressPosture can affect you mentally too! The pain you experience due to poor posture can translate into mental stress, decreased motivation, and overall mood.
  3. ArthritisIn the long run, poor posture can be extremely detrimental to your joint health and be a contributing factor to developing arthritis. Small changes in posture can help to prevent long term problems in the future.

Correcting your posture throughout your day is key! At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our expert physical therapists are experienced with working with patients who suffer from the symptoms of bad posture. By correcting your posture, you can help to correct your overall health. Our caring, compassionate, and empowering therapists are here to teach you simple stretches, exercises and modifications to make correct posture second nature.

Call to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

1111 W Town and Country Road Ste 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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Zap Your Pain Away with Our Laser!

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From TMJ to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, and from shoulder strains to knee injuries, muscle and joint pain can seem like an unsolvable and despairing burden. Thankfully, Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, and her expert physical therapists at Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center have discovered the miraculous ML830 Cold Laser for these and many other troublesome conditions.

 

Dr. Chadwick Smith, professor of Orthopedics at USC says, “the ML830 Cold Laser has clearly proven its clinical value treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, and had become the industry standard”. But how can a laser be so effective?

The ML830 Laser…

  • Reduces pain sometimes after one treatment. Most conditions take between 2-9 treatments to completely alleviate symptoms. Chronic conditions may require more treatment.
  • Reduces inflammation By following instructions from your therapist, you can prevent further injury and prevent pain.
  • Increase tissue healing by sending photons (light) into injured tissues without being absorbed by skin, fat, or blood.
  • Increases tissue cell repair and strengthens the tissue.

 

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our knowledgeable and caring staff uses the laser for many of our patient’s injuries and painful conditions.

 

Call us today to schedule one free treatment with the ML830 Laser! (714)997-5518

1111 W Town and Country Ste 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

 

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Running with back pain? Focus on your CORE!

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Americans who are recreational runners and distance walkers are susceptible to low back pain. According to the Journal of Southern Orthopedic Association, 14 percent of American runners suffer from back pain. A recent study by Ohio State University proved a correlation between deep core muscle weakness and low back pain in runners. The study had adults go through a simulation that showed weakened deep core muscles, especially the deep erector spinae, which seems to be most responsible for controlling running kinematics.

Research concludes that the best way to reduce the likelihood of low back pain in runners is to focus their training, strengthening, and stabilizing on their core muscles. Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to know that physical therapy can properly address these running impairments. Our expert physical therapists can develop a plan of care to improve function, decrease pain, regain mobility and improve your quality of life. At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our therapists will evaluate your symptoms and create the best plan of recovery for you!

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center for any questions or to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

1111 W Town and Country Road Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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Slip and Falls Happen Ever 11 Seconds- These 3 Tips Might Help!

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Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionistsees countless slip and fall injuries every year. They are more common than you’d expect!  ¼ of Americans over the age of 65 fall each year. Every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall. It is not just older populations that need to be careful- falls can happen to anyone.

“All too often, people take their footing for granted. It’s typical for someone to walk around at full speed without ever looking down at the ground. This may be fine when there are no obstacles and the ground is made of something that gives good traction, but it can result in tripping or slipping if there’s something unexpected in the way or the ground has become icy,” says Dr. Samantha Stuart, D.C. from Portland, Oregon.

We’re sure you don’t need too much convincing on the topic of how detrimental falls can be. Are you curious how you and your loved ones might be able to avoid becoming one of these statistics? Here are 3 tips to keep in mind.

  1. Slip and fall accidents often happen in icy, wet, oily or slick conditions. Sidewalks, which are normally safe, become slippery and dangerous. Painted crosswalks on the road become very slippery when they are damp. Even in better weather conditions, some dirt on the ground could have you flailing like a mad-man to keep your balance!
  2. Remember to look down while you are walking. Many accidents stem from tripping over objects, or slipping on wet surfaces. Practice quick intervention by quickly cleaning any water spilled in the home, or clearing your path of objects left by you or your children.
  3. If you are have fallen once or more, speak with your doctor. There may be a reason you have fallen that you are not aware of. The issue might even be correctable, such as balance or an unusual gait or walking pattern.

If you have fallen, or feel you are risk for falling, call Walker Physical Therapy & Pain Center to start your personalized plan of care for vestibular rehabilitation with an expert physical therapist!

Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center

714-997-5518

1111 W. Town & Country Rd. Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

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5 Things Most People Don’t Know About Hip Pain

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People with an active or athletic lifestyle know that minor muscle aches and pains are inevitable. Typically with rest, ice and a massage, our aches and pains normally resolve themselves. But what if the achy conditions don’t clear up right away? Hip pain is common among active individuals and it’s important to understand what your body is trying to tell you. Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to know 5 things that most people aren’t aware of.

  1. Backs, hips, and knees have a tricky way to mimic each other when it comes to pain. You may feel as if the problem is your hip but it can actually be your back. Seeing a medical professional is the best way to figure out where the pain is really stemming from!
  2. Hip pain can feel more intense because of bursitis, tendonitis and arthritis. These problems are typically treated with non-operative measures such as medication, anti-inflammation injections, and physical therapy.
  3. One of the most common reasons for hip pain is osteoarthritis. Patients with arthritis often have a parent, sibling, aunt or uncle with arthritis also.
  4. Groin pain can sometimes be mistaken as a problem at the hip joint. Normally when a suspected groin muscle pull doesn’t seem to improve, it’s osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis pain typically ranges from time to time, so patients tend to have good and bad days.
  5. Hip arthritis treatment is improving! There is a new minimally invasive hip replacement procedure called the “anterior approach”. It is important to see an orthopedic specialist to talk about the best treatment options for your symptoms.

 

Seeing a medical professional is the best way to receive an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. While hip pain can be limiting, its often easily treated once accurately diagnosed.

 

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center for any questions or to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

 

1111 W Town and Country Rd Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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Trying to Get Over a Cold? Know When to Fight It With Exercise!

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A strong immune system is the key to avoid getting sick and to get over a cold. Research has proven that regular exercise will help to build your immune system! By doing physical activity at a moderate intensity for 30 minutes about 3-4 times a week you will increase your body’s production of T-cells. These important cells are your body’s natural defense against infections and bacteria. By building your immune system, you will stay healthy more often and you can continue your exercise regime. But do you know when you’re too sick to work out? Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to know how to determine if it’s okay or not to exercise.

She uses the “above the neck- below the neck rule”; if your signs and symptoms are above the neck (stuffy nose, sore throat, ear ache) – you are okay to exercise. If your signs and symptoms are below the neck (vomiting, diarrhea, fever/chills, coughing/chest congestion) – take the day off from exercise.

It’s also important to always keep a few things in mind! You should always avoid physical activity anytime your body temperature rises above 101°. You should also avoid the gym if you are within the first 1-3 days of your cold. Although exercise it’s important, it’s best to do yourself and others a favor and know when to stay home to avoid spreading your germs. If all else fails, there is always at home exercises that you can do to burn some calories!

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center for any questions or to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

 

1111 W Town and Country Ste 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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It’s the First Day of Spring – Garden the RIGHT Way

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With warm weather around the corner, gardening becomes the perfect past time! But the sad reality is that many people find gardening to be painful to their backDr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to practice these basic body mechanics as you work in your yard!

  1. Know what correct posture is and learn how to check posture throughout the day – back pain normally is result from continuous poor posture habits leading to a loss of flexibility and decreased physical fitness. By understanding how to maintain correct posture, you will protect your spine, muscles, and joints.
  2. Yes, you should warm up before gardening – without preparing your muscles for physical activity, your muscles act like cold rubber bands which aren’t easy to move. By stretching your neck, shoulders, arms, back and legs, you will warm up your muscles to reduce the risk of pain or injury during your time in the garden.
  3. Take breaks – Be easy to your body! Taking breaks every 15 minutes, either for a cool-down stretch or for a glass of water, will help to keep you gardening longer.

These basic habits are important to avoid pain or injury! By practicing these techniques, you will be sure to be gardening all spring long! At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our expert physical therapists are here to help you with these everyday techniques and teach you specific exercises to manage your pain symptoms.

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center for any questions or to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

1111 W Town and Country Rd Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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3 Ways to Ease Knee Pain

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Knee pain is generally caused from the over-use or under-use of the knee joint and muscles. Being active is helpful for joint lubrication and maintains muscle strength to keep the patella aligned. Jumping or landing from a height repetitively, standing on hard surfaces, or doing increased kneeling or standing which your knees lockedare common ways to cause inflammation. Once pain is caused, it’s important to decrease the stress you put on the knee and ensure not to hyperextend (over-straighten the knee) or bend the joint to aggravate the knee anymore. Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, wants you to remember these things when it comes to knee pain!

1. Maintain good posture which your knees are relaxed and you are transferring your weight more onto your heels than your toes. When standing for a long period of time, wiggle your knees front and back from time to time to ensure they are always relaxed and you don’t lock out your knees.

2. Keep your glutes strong! By standing and sitting from a chair without the support of your arms, you will maintain strength in your hips and butt with this everyday.

3. If you are in need of a total knee replacement, physical therapy prior to surgery can assist in gaining range of motion and decreasing swelling during your recovery. By doing these exercises before surgery, you are also strengthening your healthy knee that will be assisting you more often after your surgery.

 

Physical therapy can help ease knee pain and improve mobility! At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our expert physical therapists will develop specific exercise programs to ease your knee symptoms! Our personalized programs provide results in an affordable, fun and healing environment before and after your surgery.

 

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center for any questions or to schedule an appointment! (714)997-5518

1111 W. Town and Country Rd. Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

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6 Causes of Sciatica and Why you Dont Need Surgery

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Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist want to inform you that patients that suffer with sciatica don’t always have to turn to surgery. Sciatica us a common issue that is caused by the irritation from the sciatic nerve, the largest nerve in the body. Pain from sciatica is usually felt from the lower back to behind the thigh and radiates below the knee. This pain can make walking, sitting or standing up an issue.

6 causes of sciatica include:

  1. Trauma– car accidents, falls and sports injuries.
  2. Piriformis syndrome– When the piriformis muscle is tight, injured or stressed, it can compress the sciatic nerve and cause symptoms of sciatica.
  3. Spinal tumors– Tumors, though they are not as common, can compress nerves causing pain in the hip, thigh and groin.
  4. Herniated disk– Disks that are located in between the vertebrae of our spine can become displaced and bulge inward or outward pressing on part of the sciatic nerve. This is one of the most common causes of sciatica.
  5. Lumbar spinal stenosis– Narrowing of the passageways that major nerves pass through in the spine will irritate and compress the nerves.
  6. Spondylolisthesis– When the vertebrae slip out of alignment with the rest of the spine due to disease, previous injuries or surgeries, or excessive physical stress, symptoms of sciatica may occur.

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy, physical therapy can offer the same results for patients with sciatica who have had spinal surgery. The academy reports from the British Medical Journal and states that studies have only shown short-term improvement in patients who have had surgery. After 6 months to 2 years, the difference between surgery patients and physical therapy patients diminishes.

Surgery is not only costly, but risky.

“The significance of this study is that patients may be able to avoid surgery if they realized they can expect a similar improvement in symptoms if they use other ways to manage the pain for 6 months,”

says Dr. Timothy Flynn of Regis University in Denver, CO, and President of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists (AAOMPT).

Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist encourages patients to become educated about their sciatic and back pain. She agrees with Timothy Flynn in his statement:

“Patients should be aware that surgery is not the only option to reduce the symptoms of sciatica.”

Call Walker Physical Therapy & Pain Center to schedule an appointment. Treatment is affordable and effective!

714-997-5518

1111 W. Town & Country Rd. Ste.1

Orange, Ca 92868

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