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TMJ and TMD Relief: TMD Treatment Without Surgery | Life’s Work PT

If you’ve ever had pain in your jaw, you may have heard the term TMJ. The temporomandibular joints are the joints that connect the jawbone to the skull. These joints work during jaw movement such as opening and closing the mouth, talking and chewing; and, like any area of the body, injury and overuse can cause problems. Problems with the joints, muscles and other tissue in this area is called Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD). Essentially, something is wrong with the joints that connect the mandible (the jaw bone) to the skull, and this usually involves the muscles that work to …Read More

Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy for Pregnant and Post Partum Women

Pregnancy changes the body in many ways. Most of these changes are positive, meant to keep both mother and the baby healthy. But there is one common, unwelcome change: according to the American Physical Therapy Association, between 50-70% of women will experience low back pain and 45% or more experience pelvic girdle pain during or after pregnancy. Many different factors contribute to pain: hormonal changes decrease stability in joints and ligaments, and due to the changes that happen in the body, posture and center of gravity change. Additionally, women are increasingly more active when they have their first child; a …Read More

Physical Therapy for Runners: How to Safely Train & Build Strength

The more we learn about health and injury, the more the saying “Exercise is the best medicine” rings true. Here in Portland, running is one of the most popular recreational activities and it’s easy to see why. More and more evidence points to the benefits of running including preventing Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and even some cancers. That’s in addition to the positive impact it can have on our overall physical and mental health. Unfortunately, most runners will deal with an injury of some sort due to the repetitive stresses running puts on the body. …Read More

5 Easy Tips to Avoid Back Pain While Gardening

The start of summer means the start of gardening season in Portland. While gardening is a great way to get outside and stay active, it can also lead to unwanted back pain. Thankfully, here are five easy things you can do to stay safe and avoid back pain and injury while gardening. 1. Use Good Posture When Lifting The most important thing you should remember when gardening is to use good lifting mechanics in order to prevent low back injuries. Avoid bending forward as this will put excess strain on the lower back. Focus on bending through the knees and …Read More

Physical Therapy Facts: Top 10 Things to Know About Pain

Why do we feel pain? What is our body telling us? Learn the top 10 things you should know about pain and how physical therapy can help treat it: 1. Pain is a protective device. Things shouldn’t hurt for no reason. In a healthy body, pain is a sign that something is wrong. It’s a signal from your brain that there is something that needs attention. You wouldn’t ignore a check engine light on your car, so treat pain the same way. 2. Pain doesn’t give us specifics. It doesn’t tell us what is going on in the tissues of …Read More

Do I Sit Too Much? How Often You Should Exercise & Be Active

Did you know the average office worker sits up to 13 hours a day? Our society is built around sitting – at your desk, in your car, and in front of the television. Doctors and researchers have been warning us about the dangers of prolonged sitting for years; prolonged sitting is associated with higher risks of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, cancer, depression and pain. An expert even described sitting as “more dangerous than smoking; it kills more people than HIV and is more treacherous than parachuting. We are sitting ourselves to death!” The more we learn about how dangerous to …Read More

The Essential Soccer Mom First-Aid Kit for Sports Injuries

Portland is an active city and most children participate in at least one athletic activity. While physical activity is incredibly important and the benefits are numerous, injuries do happen. It is important for parents to be prepared and have a basic understanding of simple first aid. While most parents are not physical therapists, being prepared can help them feel at ease knowing they are ready to handle minor injuries. Ready Your First-Aid Kit While there are many things that can go into a first aid kit it is important to choose items that are easy to use and that are …Read More

Reducing & Preventing Back Pain with Workplace Ergonomics

In the last 50 years, the workplace has gotten more and more sedentary. As office jobs became increasingly prevalent, the posture-related pain increased as well. In addition, even though we were sitting more and more, the workstation wasn’t usually set up to promote good posture and biomechanics. Thankfully, as we have learned more about the effects of prolonged sitting, an increasing number of workplaces and companies are taking the initiative to provide good and ergonomically correct workstations to help prevent pain. This is important because spending our working lives in poor postural positions can negatively affect us as we get …Read More

How to Successful Treatment of Cervicogenic Headaches

Cervicogenic Headaches Headaches are a common condition which many people suffer from every day. As those who experience headaches know, headache pain can be debilitating and have negative effects on work, relationships, and a person’s ability to function in everyday life. There are many types of headaches, and headaches caused by neck pain are called cervicogenic headaches. These type of headaches can be successfully treated with physical therapy. How to Distinguish a Cervicogenic Headaches While neck headaches can be confusing to diagnose there are several prominent symptoms. In cervicogenic headaches, pain is usually focused on one side (although it can be …Read More

Sports Injury Prevention for the Weekend Warrior

For many office workers, the weekend is playtime, especially in a city like Portland. When the clock hits 5:00 on a Friday, many of us head out for hiking, recreational sports leagues, and numerous other physical activities. While many individuals go months and years without an injury, so-called ‘Weekend Warriors’ are at higher risk for injuries due in part to the limited time they have to devote to their skill, sport, or activity. Think of it this way, an elite athlete has trainers and specialists who make sure that person is strong enough to perform, plays with good technique, and …Read More