Always Wear Sunscreen

Sunburns are easily preventable and action should be taken to prevent sun exposure. To date, scientists and dermatologists continue to recommend the use of sunscreen. Daniel M. Siegel, former president of the American Academy of Dermatology, sums it up eloquently, “Scientific evidence supports the benefits of sunscreen usage to minimize short- and long-term damage to the skin from UV radiation and outweighs any unproven claims of toxicity or human health hazard.” Read on for more information about how sunscreen works, the science behind the safety of sunscreen, and why it is so important to wear sunscreen.

So you think you have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome (abbreviated CTS) is used as an umbrella diagnosis with most people attributing any wrist pain to carpal tunnel syndrome. Actual CTS can be difficult to diagnose as there are similarities with neck injuries, nerve impairment, thoracic outlet syndrome, pronator teres syndrome, sprained wrist ligaments, and trigger point referral pain produce similar symptoms. Massage can be immensely helpful for CTS patients. A therapeutic massage, within pain tolerance, for carpal tunnel syndrome with specific work on the hand, wrist, forearm and shoulder may help decompress the median nerve. Massage that doesn’t exacerbate symptoms has been shown to contribute to improvement in strength, function, and symptoms of patients with CTS. Read on to find out more!

What is Motion Sickness?

My husband and I are headed on our very first cruise this week. In preparation, I have researched motion sickness. Motion sickness is brought about by motion, whether it is from riding in a car, train or rollercoaster, on a boat, or in a plane. It is sometimes referred to as seasickness, airsickness, or car sickness. But it all describes the same thing. Symptoms generally include nausea, dizziness, fatigue, and headache. “Nausea” is actually Greek for seasickness, as “naus” means ship. If the unlucky person is nauseous, the person may vomit. And unfortunately, vomiting doesn’t relieve the nausea and the person will continue to vomit until the nausea is treated. Fun times--who is ready for a cruise?

Are you always tired?

Some people may experience a profound fatigue, which is all encompassing, affecting daily routines, and not alleviated with rest. This tiredness is called “chronic fatigue syndrome,” commonly abbreviated to CFS. Coping with CFS can lead to feelings of anger, guilt, anxiety, isolation and abandonment. The feelings can lead to an increased stress level and exacerbated symptoms, which can make management and recovery more difficult. One treatment that can be beneficial to sufferers of CFS is massage, which can greatly improve the quality of life.

Tinnitus

Are your ears ringing? Many say it’s because someone is talking about you. Or, it could be because something is actually wrong with you. Sorry. It’s called tinnitus (pronounced TINN-a-tus or ti-NIGHT-us). The word tinnitus has a Latin origin that means “to ring or tinkle” [1]. Tinnitus is relatively common, affecting 50 million Americans. Most people describe it as a constant ringing in the ears, but it is defined medically as a perception of sound when there is no actual sound present. Tinnitus can occur occasionally or constantly and the volume of the sounds can fluctuate. Tinnitus can be a frustrating diagnosis to live with. I encourage sufferers to seek multiple and varied ways to help manage the symptoms.

Muscles: The Sternocleidomastoid

The sternocleidomastoid muscle, commonly referred to as the SCM for short, is a muscle on the front of your neck. While it is quite prominent, many people do not realize it is there or how important it is to your daily life. The SCM is one of the muscles commonly affected in a whiplash injury. Additionally, chronically tight SCMs can cause a variety of problems. You may be experiencing some of these problems yourself and not know it. It can cause headaches, earaches, toothaches, twitchy eyes, and nausea.

Active vs. Passive Range of Motion and Why it Matters to You

Active and passive range of motion assessments are commonly used in physical therapist-like settings. Active range of motion, sometimes called AROM (pronounced A-rahm) is the range of motion that a person demonstrates on their own body. You are doing AROM when you move your own leg. Passive range of motion, sometimes called PROM (pronounced pee-rahm), is when somebody else moves that person’s body for them. For example, if you need a PROM assessment in the above example, somebody else will move your leg for you. I use these assessments frequently during massages to help guide me into a more effective massage. And recently, I used these assessments on my husband. Active and passive range of motion can be useful in your day to day life, helping you figure out what might be wrong with your body.

High Heels, Flip Flops, and Foot Binding. Oh my!

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Many people wear terrible shoes in the name of fashion or a mandated dress code. Poor shoes can lead to a litany of short term and long term health issues. If you commonly wear heels, flip flops, pointy toed shoes, or just uncomfortable shoes in general, I urge you to reconsider your shoe choices--it just isn’t worth it. Men are not immune to injuries and pain from shoe choices either. Besides flip flops, which are commonplace among almost everybody, dress shoes designed for men are not always designed with comfort and function in mind.

All About Running Shoes

Running is a cheap and easy exercise to undertake--easy in the sense that you don’t need much equipment and you can run pretty much anywhere. The major equipment you need for running is running shoes. Many people may start their new running regimen with their old athletic shoes dug out from the back of the closet. However, I caution you against this. It will be better for you and your lower limbs if you run in purposefully built shoes. For the new runner, the choices and vocabulary surrounding running shoes can be a bit intimidating. Here are the basics of running shoes.