Sitting for long periods of time during Covid-19?

<a href="https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/people">sitting image above by freepik - www.freepik.com</a>by KATE SERODIO, DPT

Does Pre-Covid-19 seem like forever ago?  We’re now in week 4 and many of us are feeling like it’s been an eternity.  We no longer have our luxury at work desks, chairs, and routines.  But instead we’re left in our personal homes with our new work stations consisting of high top stools, a recliner, the couch, kitchen table, or your home office chair which you’re sure is the reason you’re now having some weird pain/sensation on the outside of your leg.  To make our working conditions even more complicated many of us have children that interrupt you with every other thought.  In fact, this tiny paragraph took me an hour to write secondary to the constant interruption and demands of the children’s online learning and my newly appointed position of Head of Homeschooling.  I miss the day when I had no idea what a zoom meeting was! 🙂

We are all on the struggle bus together!  We have no idea how long this ride will be but hopefully we can get off at the next stop, May 4th, right?  In the meantime, I’d like to help you with a simple adjustment you can make to help you get rid of your back or leg pain and or prevent it from ever happening.

Many of us, including myself, are experiencing sciatic pain.  Sciatic pain can present itself in many ways.  You could have pain anywhere from localized to your back to all the way down your leg to your foot.  The pain could be mild to severe and present itself as numbness, tingliness, burning or a pulling/tight feeling.  Nerves are complicated and don’t always make sense.  But if they’re starting to talk to you it’s very important that you don’t ignore them as they will soon become very angry and make sure you have no choice but to listen.  Anyone that has had a severe case of sciatica knows what I’m talking about.

So, what can you do to keep your back and sciatic nerve happy?

Above is a video I made, showing you 3 tIps on things you can change immediately in your home office or living room! (ALSO EXPLAINED BELOW)

TIP #1 Sit on a wedge or pillow: this increases the angle at your hips and decreases the neural tension on your sciatic nerve.  Sitting at a 90deg will actually put more pull/strain on the nerve.  The goal is to have your knees lower than your waist putting you more into a standing position vs sitting.  You should feel an immediate relief in your back and if you have any leg symptoms going on they should also be reduced or completely eliminated.

TIP #2  Don’t sit so long!  Set a timer for 20minutes.  Or drink so much water that your bladder puts you on a timer.  Your body isn’t meant to be in any one position for longer than 20minutes.  You’re asking for trouble if you go beyond this time.   Get up and move/change positions or how about you stretch!

TIP #3  stretch? Yes, one the best things you could do for your back to prevent constant disc bulging from sitting is to do the opposite of what you’ve been doing for the past 20+minutes.  Yes, stand up and simply arch backwards.  Repeat 20x

STAY SAFE & HAPPY!  We are open if you need us… just call!

(image of woman sitting image above by freepik – www.freepik.com)

HPT Helps ~ Donate Food or Take What You Need!

Give Food - take what you need at Hampton Physical Therapy in NHFriends & Patients,

We realize there are some of you who are out of work and perhaps in need of some help. And there are some of you who are still working who might like to help others during this difficult time. 

FUN afterschool center in Hampton, NH - partners with Hampton PT

Both Hampton Physical Therapy locations (Seabrook & Hampton) as well as FUN located at 40 Stickney Terrace, Hampton (provides quality after school programs) are going to leave a donation box just outside our front doors. We have put a few food items in it to get things started and will keep adding as the days progress.

If you would like to GIVE a donation, please bring non perishable goods
(and/or gift cards to support local restaurants) 
and leave them in the box. 

PLEASE feel free to TAKE some of the items for your family or friends
who are 
in need of food supplies!

We will keep you all posted on the progression of our little” food bank”.

WHEN we get back to a more “normal” life, if there are food items still available in the boxes, we will donate to our area organizations who supply food items for those in need.

If you need us – we are open and being conscientious of social distancing, sanitizing, and wearing masks. We want to continue to provide care for all our patients.

Feel free to call us at 603-474-2259 or 603-929-2880.

Physical Therapy services are labeled as an essential service. Private practices like ours have been encouraged by our professional association to remain open as a safer alternative to urgent care and emergency room during the Covid-19 crisis. We can assist in evaluating, triaging, and caring for non-emergent musculoskeletal injury. Emergency rooms and urgent care centers must preserve their staff and equipment for real emergency care at this time.

We are strictly following all screening and cleaning measures recommended by the CDC.

Thank you for understanding the severity of the situation and doing your part to keep the community safe.

Direct Access ~ Take Charge of Your Healing!

by LISA WHELDON

As a physical therapist I frequently get asked by people that are dealing with an injury, “well how do I get an appointment with you, do I need a prescription or a referral?”. The world of insurance can be a very confusing thing for the consumer. At Hampton Physical Therapy our front office does their best to explain and break down how your individual insurance works before you even start your first visit. We want to make things as easy as possible to get you started in our clinic and provide quality care. Several insurance plans including Medicare and other PPO’s (preferred provider organizations) are considered to be direct access and the state of NH allows for direct access.

Many people don’t know that NH is a direct access state. This means that if you need physical therapy you don’t need a referral from your doctor. You can come in for treatment on your own. So you can refer yourself, just call our clinic and we will schedule you as soon as possible for an evaluation. At Hampton Physical Therapy we are all doctors of physical therapy. DPT’s are highly-trained in how to recognize “red flags” and refer out to physicians immediately if needed. DPT’s learned the proper screening tools to deem if you are appropriate for therapy. We will refer you out to a physician for possible diagnostic imaging to rule out a pathology that is not appropriate for therapy. With direct access the APTA enabled PT’s to be the preferred licensed professionals to treat musculoskeletal disorders.

Direct access is a way to save money for not only the insurance company but the consumer as well. Many insurance companies now recognize the cost savings and improved access to care that come with direct access and do not require a referral for payment1. For example: these savings are evident in the area of low back pain costs. Chronic low back pain is a high cost in the healthcare industry and by getting early access we can save over 50% in cost. If a patient receives PT within 14 days of onset of pain it can minimize the average total cost of care by 50%2. That is major savings for the health care industry and for the individual by getting a patient in PT the following day after their injury and starting treatments like dry needling, spinal manipulation, and corrective exercises.

Without the need for a referral the option to choose where you want to go for treatment is much easier. You don’t have to wait to book an appointment with your PCP or an orthopedic doctor which can sometimes take weeks. At Hampton Physical Therapy we can typically get patients in within 24 hours of calling, if they have a flexible schedule. We have 2 convenient locations on the Seacoast of NH, located on Route 1 in Hampton and Seabrook, NH. We even offer FREE Discovery Visits! A discovery visit is a free consultation with a therapist for a potential patient to come into the clinic and discuss their current condition and see if physical therapy is something that can help them. Frequently the discovery visit leads to the patient being a formal patient. We have therapists trained in spinal manipulation, dry needling, vestibular rehab, modern strength training, and Graston Technique™ . So it’s that easy to save money and get quality care! Feel free to book an appointment for either a free discovery visit or for your initial evaluation today at 603-474-2259 or 603-929-2880.

REFERENCES:
1. Neil. (n.d.). Direct Access in Practice. Retrieved June 25, 2019, from http://www.apta.org/DirectAccess/

2. Direct Access: The Truth About Seeing a PT First. (2017, May 24). Retrieved June 25, 2019, from https://ptcentral.org/2017/05/direct-access-truth-seeing-pt-first/