What does your pillow do to you?

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What does your pillow do to you?

With approximately one third of our lives spent sleeping, it is essential to have good quality sleep in order for the body to maintain normal physiological function and biological processes [1,2]. However for many of us, a good night’s rest is interrupted by uncomfortable neck pains that most likely will wake us during the night and persist throughout the day. Studies have shown that problems sleeping and in sufficient time of rest can also be indirectly linked with increased risk of diseases, hormonal changes, sleeping disorders and associated stress [3]. So you may ask, what can be done to ensure you get a more comfortable nights’ rest and reduced neck pain?

Studies have concluded that the proper selection of pillow can significantly reduce neck muscular tension and pain, improving an individual’s overall quality of sleep [1]. Poor neck support increases the work of neck and upper back muscles during sleep, causing increased biomechanical stress and morning pain [2]. Therefore the posture we adopt during a night’s rest can be related to musculoskeletal injuries of the neck and upper back, with muscular tension found to be a contributing factor to constant headaches [2].

 

What can be done?

Muscular tension and neck pain can therefore benefit from an appropriate pillow type as an adjunct management strategy to neck exercise training [1,4]. There are many various pillows on the market designed to help create the most relaxed position for the neck joints and surrounding muscles. How do you know what pillow to choose?

Here are some tips:

  • A pillow that has firm support to cervical lordosis (neck contour) which holds the head and neck region sufficiently in a neutral alignment to the upper back, reducing the biomechanical load to these regions [2] 
  • A neck pillow with the appropriate shape and consistency [5] 
  • A pillow of the correct height that will correctly support the cervical lordosis [5]
  • A one size fits all approach does not exist.

 

What has studies shown?

Studies have found that after 18 months of use of a supportive pillow, 84% of users achieved clinically important relief from neck pain [1] Compared to conventional pillows cervical pillows were shown to be effective in reducing neck pain and discomfort [1]

Another study found that muscle activity was higher in those with shoulder and neck pain, with a change of pillow height to a more suitable height significantly lowering the amount of muscle activity [2]. This study also showed that a pillow height of 10 cm not only had the lowest muscle activity but also resulted in similar muscle activity on both side when in side lying positions. They concluded that the best perception of comfort was associated with better head and shoulder alignment which produced the lowest amount of muscular activation [2]. A study that compared the comfort of certain material types of pillows found that memory foam pillows performed best with reduced waking pain and improved sleep quality, whilst the feather pillow performed the worst [6].

However, changing a pillow may be beneficial in improving a night rest and reduce pain, but for those who experience acute and chronic neck pain clinical treatment is most advantageous in conjunction with a suitable pillow.

 

How can Physiotherapy help?

  • Provide suitable tailored maintenance strategies to decrease muscular tension, pain and headache symptoms
  • Create a personalised exercise and stretching program to increase neck and upper back muscle strength
  • Undertake a postural and movement assessment of neck and upper back and provide recommendations on adjustment of seating posture
  • Help assist you with selecting the correct pillow for you through analysing posture and upper back and neck biomechanics
  • Provide education to encourage self-management strategies.

 

If you have any questions regarding neck pain and sleeping posture please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

 

References

  1. Erfania P, Tenzif S, Guerriero RC. Assessing effects of a semi-customized experimental cervical pillow on symptomatic adults with chronic neck pain with and without headache. Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association. 2004;48(1):20-28.
  2. Sacco ICN, Pereira ILR, Dinato RC, Silva VC, Friso B, Viterbo SF. The effect of pillow height on muscle activity of the neck and mid-upper back and patient perception of comfort. Journal Of Manipulative And Physiological Therapeutics. 2015;38(6):375-381.
  3. Lavin RA, Pappagallo M, Kuhlemeier KV. Cervical pain: A comparison of three pillows. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. 1997;78(2):193-198.
  4. Helewa A, Goldsmith CH, Smythe HA, Lee P, Obright K, Stitt L. Effect of therapeutic exercise and sleeping neck support on patients with chronic neck pain: a randomized clinical trial. The Journal of Rheumatology. 2007;34(1):151-158.
  5. Persson L, Moritz U. Neck support pillows: a comparative study. Journal Of Manipulative And Physiological Therapeutics. 1998;21(4):237-240.
  6. Gordon SJ, Grimmer-Somers K, Trott P. Pillow use: The behaviour of cervical pain, sleep quality and pillow comfort in side sleepers. Manual Therapy. 2009;14(6):671-678.

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What is Osteoarthritis (OA)?

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What is Osteoarthritis (OA)?

What is osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a complex degenerative non-inflammatory joint disease that affects the whole joint including subchondral bone, articular cartilage, ligaments and muscles that surround a synovial joint1 [1]. It is characterised by progressive cartilage loss, subchondral bone remodelling and formation of osteophytes narrowing the joint space [2]. Low-grade local synovial inflammation occurs believed to be a result of release of inflammatory mediators from the degradation of articular cartilage [3]. OA is the most common type of arthritis that leads to a gradual decline in health, physical function and well-being if not managed correctly [1]. Hands, hips, lower back, knees and feet are the areas that are most affected by OA.

OA is commonly referred as a “wear and tear” form of arthritis as it is thought to occur as a part of an aging process, however it has been found that aging is not a predictor of OA [1]. The aetiology of OA is however due to the result of excessive mechanical stress applied in context of susceptibility modifiable and non-modifiable factors such as age, genetics, gender, ethnicity, local mechanical factors, obesity and joint injury [2]. OA is a highly preventable and manageable disease, with 70 per cent of cases within Australia preventable by avoiding excess weight gain and joint injuries [1].

 

How common is OA?

OA currently affects one in 12 Australians and is the leading cause of chronic pain and disability world-wide [1,4]. Although the incidence of OA has been found to increase with age, osteoarthritis can occur at any stage, with more than half of the people being of working age [1 ]. It is estimated that within the next four years, the prevalence of OA will have doubled due to the higher rates of obesity also placing people at a higher risk of death compared to a general population [2].

 

Common Causes and Contributing Factors of OA

The causes of OA are not well understood however it has been shown that several biomechanical, genetic, behavioural and environmental factors contribute [1].

Person-level factors [5]

  • Genetics
  • Excess weight and obesity
  • Gender: Higher prevalence in women, incidence rates increases around menopause.
  • Age: Main risk factor however not an inevitable factor of OA

Joint- level factors

  • Abnormal joint irregularity, joint malalignment, muscle weakness and ligament rupture are some local mechanical contributing factors that increase susceptibility and progression of OA [2]
  • Joint injury and certain repetitive joint loading occupational activities [2]

 

 Common Symptoms of OA [6]:

  • Limited/reduced range of motion
  • Stiffness
  • Clicking or cracking sound
  • Mild swelling around joint
  • Pain- worse at the end of day
  • Tenderness
  • Muscle weakness
  • Mild effusion
  • Joint and limb deformity

 

How can physiotherapy help?

Currently physiotherapy treatment and management of OA is focused on reducing mechanical loads and symptom management [1]. Physiotherapy management includes the use of a variety of low impact exercise programs which has been shown to be effective [7]. Exercise based treatment approaches such as walking programs to water and land based strengthening programs have been proven to be beneficial in managing symptoms of OA [7]

Other management strategies include [4]

  • Electrical based therapy
  • Prescription equipment/aids
  • Taping
  • Weight loss program
  • Manual therapies
  • Education on pain and self-management.

Studies has found that the benefits of exercise in OA in relation to pain and physical function has a similar effect to that gained by analgesic and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications with fewer side effects [2] Physiotherapy treatment and management will be tailored to target each individual taking into account specific risk factors and patient characteristics.

If you have any questions regarding managing OA better, please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. At Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

 

References:

  1. Arthritis A. Time to Move: Osteoarthrtis. http://www.arthritisaustralia.com.au/index.php/reports/time-to-move-arthritis-reports.html: Arthritis Australia;March 2014.
  2. Hunter DJ. Osteoarthritis. Best Practice & Research Clinical Rheumatology. 2011;25(6):801-814.
  3. Berenbaum F. Osteoarthritis as an inflammatory disease (osteoarthritis is not osteoarthrosis!). Osteoarthritis and Cartilage. 2013;21(1):16-21.
  4. Larmer PJ, Reay ND, Aubert ER, Kersten P. Systematic review of guidelines for the physical management of osteoarthritis. Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation. 2014;95(2):375-389.
  5. Palazzo C, Nguyen C, Lefevre-Colau M-M, Rannou F, Poiraudeau S. Risk factors and burden of osteoarthritis. Annals of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine. 2016;59(3):134-138.
  6. Michael JW-P, Schlüter-Brust KU, Eysel P. The epidemiology, etiology, diagnosis, and treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee. Deutsches Arzteblatt International. 2010;107(9):152.
  7. Rosedale R, Rastogi R, May S, et al. Efficacy of exercise intervention as determined by the McKenzie System of Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy for knee osteoarthritis: a randomized controlled trial. journal of orthopaedic & sports physical therapy. 2014;44(3):173-A176.

 

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Middle back pain and left arm pain

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Middle back pain and left arm pain

Question

A 50 years old female, Mrs L., presents with middle back pain and left arm pain gradually developed over the weekend without clear mechanism of injury. The only potential reason that she could think of was gardening. She had ongoing back stiffness; otherwise she is normally healthy and active. What could be the cause of her problem?

 

Clinical examination

Mrs L’s left arm pain is provoked when she is reaching forward. Her left shoulder range of movement is normal. She has reduced neck and middle back range of movement, specifically cervical retraction and thoracic extension.

In neurological examination, Mrs L’s biceps and triceps jerk reflex are normal. Her strength and sensation were also normal. On palpation, her left mid thoracic area is stiff and her arm pain is also provoked.

It appears that Mrs L’s left arm symptom is related to her left thoracic spine.

 

Management

Mrs L’s left arm symptoms and thoracic spine stiffness are reduced after some thoracic spine joint mobilisation. She was then given some cervical and thoracic mobility exercises to restore her loss of range of movement. Her symptom is almost completely abolished in two weeks.

It is not uncommon that sometimes the arm pain that patient experienced come from a different body part, typically cervical or thoracic spine. A systematic examination procedure will help identifying the source of the symptoms, and aid an appropriate management approach.

 

If you have any questions regarding suspicious arm pain and need and assessment, please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. At Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

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Conservative Management of Meniscal Tear

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Conservative Management of Meniscal Tear

History

A 47-year-old male presents with an acute left knee injury from rotational standing up movement from a seated position at lunch. He felt immediate pain in the medial side of his knee and reports a locking sensation when attempting to straighten his knee. What can physiotherapy do to help.

 

Clinical Examination

The patient was unable to weight bear on his left leg as he could not straighten his left knee due to pain and catching sensation. During passive range of motion movements, his knee could be flexed to full range, however was painful at end of range and when moving leg back into extension. Passive patella movement did not reproduce his symptoms, though symptoms reproduced upon palpation of medial border of knee cap and medial knee joint. No swelling was evident at time of review, however this is expected in the acuteness of his injury.

His mechanism of injury and clinical presentation indicate an acute torn flap of his medical meniscus.

 

Management

Small meniscal tears can be managed conservatively if a person’s range of motion is not greatly affected, have minimal swelling and are able weight bear. The first phase of conservative management of an acute meniscal tear includes maintaining knee extension range of motion and providing stability to the knee to reduce any risk of further injury. Small amplitudes of passive accessory movements were undertaken in attempt to normalise joint range of motion. He was provided with education regarding the importance in maintaining knee extension and encouraged to undertake light knee extension stretching techniques to aid in this. Kinesiology tape was used to strap his knee to promote healing, support, reduce swelling and assist in pain reduction. The patient responded well with dry needling to his hamstrings and calf muscles which assisted in off-loading the knee joint from muscle tightness. Following the initial treatment, the patient had a reduction in pain symptoms and ability to weight bear as tolerated through left leg.

Over the next two to three weeks, the focus was to eliminate swelling and achieve full range of motion and focus on hamstring and quadriceps strength. Through the completing all home strengthening and stretching exercise program, this patient improved well and could obtain full range of knee extension with a reduction of pain and an increase of muscle strength. He was provided with full range squats and lunges as a progression to his hamstring and quadriceps strengthening exercises with added endurance training program for his hip external rotators. After another few weeks, he could return to his home-based fitness program and work schedule without any issues.

 

If you have any questions regarding your knees or are interested in seeing if we can help you, please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

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Ankle Sprain from Basketball

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Ankle Sprain from Basketball

Question

A 15 years old boy presents with a recent right lateral ankle sprain from landing on someone’s foot and rolled inwards during basketball. What should he do to facilitate return to sports?

 

Clinical examination

In observation, the patient has mild lateral ankle swelling but no bruises. He is able to walk without pain. Symptoms are provoked during eversion and lunging. His anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL) is tender on palpation. Ligament stability tests (anterior and posterior drawer tests) are negative.

The examination findings suggest that he has a low grade right ATFL sprain.

 

Management

A combination of education, RICE (rest, ice, compression and elevation) approach will be appropriate to manage his acute symptoms. In this scenario, his symptoms are able to further reduce with joint mobilisation and strapping. 

Over the next two weeks, he is able to gradually progress his exercises from range of movement exercises to proprioception and strengthening exercises, specifically single leg balance and single leg heel raise. He was able to perform thirty repetitions in single leg heel raise which is clinically indicative for exercise progression and trial return to modified sports. 

It is indicated from research that the reinjuring rate after the first ankle sprain within the first year is remarkably high, up to eighty per cent. It is also suggested that proprioceptive (balance) and ankle strengthening exercises will significantly reduce the risk of recurrence, and the exercises program should at least last up to two months. It is important to be aware that free of symptoms and ‘feeling good’ do not always mean the ankle function is fully recovered.

 

If you have any questions regarding ankle sprain and ankle braces, and need an assessment, please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

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ACL Tear

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ACL Tear

History

A 15 years old female Miss K who is a netballer presents with a right ACL reconstruction surgery one week ago. Her surgeon has referred her to do physiotherapy. What does she need to do in rehab?

 

Clinical examination

The patient is walking with two crutches. Her knee is moderately swollen. Her wound is covered by wound dressings. Her knee extension range is -5 degrees (meaning it’s in a slightly bended position) and her flexion range is about 20 degrees, both motions are limited by pain and stiffness.

 

Management

It is expected that ACL reconstruction rehabilitation to be a lengthy process. It generally takes at least six months to twelve months to return to sports. Most surgeons would provide the patient and the physiotherapist a rehabilitation protocol, but it is common to have variations which depend on the graft choice and individual factors.

Initial stage of ACL-recon for Miss K focuses on swelling control and restoring her loss of knee extension range. This is critical as it allows her to walk with normal gait as soon as possible and avoid the development of compensation strategies. Her treatment includes manual therapy, compression therapy, and inner range closed chain quadriceps exercises. 

In six weeks times, Miss K has recovered full knee extension and ninety per cent flexion range of motion.

Depends on the sports type, most patients can return to sports after six to twelve months. In between this six to twelve months, there is a variety of exercises need to be covered to allow successful return to sports. That includes improvement on proprioception, strength, balance, flexibility, agility, functional strength, plyometric ability and sports-specific skills.

As Miss K is very compliance to her rehabilitation program and keen to return to sports. She performs her exercises well and on schedule. She is able to return to low level netball in nine months.

 

If you have any questions regarding your post operative rehabilitation or are interested in seeing if we can help you, please give us a call at (02) 8411 2050. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, to help you get back in action as soon as possible. We are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Waitara, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble.

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Knee Pain whilst Running

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Knee Pain whilst Running

In this episode of our case review, we take a look at a challenging group to treat - runners.  The most important rule of treating them - never tell them NOT to run.

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Low Back Pain in the Office

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Low Back Pain in the Office

In this case review, we take a look at an office worker struggling with back pain.  She was treated efficiently and was back to full function much quicker than she anticipated.  We take pride in utilizing the most effective methods using the least number of sessions to get you back to 100%!

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Shoulder Pain after a Fall

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Shoulder Pain after a Fall

In a new website feature, we take a look at real cases and dissect them for you.  This gives you insight into how the physiotherapists here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy work.  Each case will feature a different injury.  Please keep in mind that each individual is unique and it is short sighted to apply the results and finding to another individual.

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Did you know?

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Did you know?

Good news!  Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy is now an NDIS approved provider.  If you or someone you know needs to access services via the NDIS you can send them our way or give us their contact details and we can do the rest.  If you are wondering what I am talking about, here is a link to more information on them.

If you have read the link and ready to take the next step towards a better you,  give us a call. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, as well as advice on the best course of action for your condition to get you back in action sooner than you could’ve imagined.  We have an expertise in musculoskeletal physiotherapy and are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Hornsby Heights, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Wahroonga, Waitara, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble. So give one of our physiotherapists a call on (02) 8411 2050 to get started on a journey to a better you. 

 

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Pain in your jaw?  Trouble with chewing ? Jaw clicking? Let’s take a look at the TMJ....

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Pain in your jaw? Trouble with chewing ? Jaw clicking? Let’s take a look at the TMJ....

So what’s the TMJ?

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the small joint of the jaw located between the temporal bone of the skull and the lower jaw bone called the mandible [1]. These two bones are separated by a disc which acts as a cushion between these bones as the jaw opens and closes and moves side to side [2]. The TMJ plays an important role to functions we do on a daily basis – chewing and speaking, yawning and swallowing.

Temporomandibular disorder (TMD) occurs when the TMJ and its associated structures and musculature stop functioning correctly and can result in pain, clicking, popping and locking within the joint [3]. However sometimes jaw pain is not so straight forward.  For example, pain may be felt in the jaw but may actually originate from other areas of your body such as the neck [2]

 

How common is it?

TMD is a very common problem affecting up to 33% of individuals within their lifetime[4]. More women than men experience TMD which may be related to hormonal factors, and it is more common in people between the ages of 20 and 40[2]. Approximately one third of the population have at least one TMD symptom [4].

 

Common causes and contributing factors to TMD:

  • Injury to the jaw, temporomandibular joint, or muscles of the head and neck – such as from a heavy blow or whiplash [5]
  • Grinding or clenching the teeth, which puts added pressure on the TMJ.  Grinding and clenching particularly at night is called bruxism [2].
  • Disc dysfunction where the disc is displaced forward and causes a click as the mouth opens and closes [6].
  • Presence of osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis in the joint [1]
  • Habitual overuse of facial muscles – for example biting fingernails [2]
  • Missing teeth and/or having an underbite or overbite [5]
  • Poor posture [7]

 

 Common symptoms of TMD include:

  • Pain or tenderness in the face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew, speak, or open your mouth wide (pain may occur on one or both sides of the face) [8]
  • Limited ability to open the mouth very wide [1]
  • Jaw may get get stuck or lock in an open or closed mouth position [9]
  • Clicking, popping, or grating sounds in the jaw joint when opening or closing the mouth (which may or may not be accompanied by pain) or chewing [6]

Other symptoms of TMD include toothaches, headaches, neck aches, dizziness, earaches, hearing problems, upper shoulder pain and ringing in the ears (tinnitus) [10].

 

How can physio help?

Physiotherapy is recommended before expensive dental splints or surgery are considered because it has been shown to reduce pain and disability associated with TMD [3, 11].  In fact, studies have shown that physiotherapy may be more effective when compared to dental splints [12-13].

 

What can I expect from my physiotherapy consultation?

  • We will take a thorough history to understand your current condition and relevant past history
  • This is followed by a physical examination to examine the TMJ and its associated structures.  You will be asked to perform certain movements which will allow us to assess any impairments. A gloved finger may be used to assess the jaw and its muscles [1].
  • Postural assessment and movement of the upper neck, middle back and muscle tension will be included [7].
  • An explanation of the findings from our examination and education on your condition
  • A treatment plan tailored specifically to you and your symptoms which may include manual therapy, soft tissue release and a tailored home exercise program [4].
  • Referral to other health practitioners or for imaging if needed [1].

 

If you are worried by pain and clicking in your jaw and/or have headaches give us a call. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, as well as advice on the best course of action for your condition to get you back in action sooner than you could’ve imagined. All our physiotherapists an expertise in musculoskeletal physiotherapy and are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble. So give one of our physiotherapists a call on (02) 8411 2050 to get started on a journey to a better you. 

 

References

1. Magee, D.J., Orthopaedic Physical Assessment. 2008, St. Louis, Mo: Saunders Elsevier.

2. Dym, H. and H. Israel, Diagnosis and treatment of temporomandibular disorders. Dent Clin North Am., 2012. 56(1): p. 149-61, ix. doi 10.1016/j.cden.2011.08.002.

3. Murphy, M.K., et al., Temporomandibular Joint Disorders: A Review of Etiology, Clinical Management, and Tissue Engineering Strategies. The International journal of oral & maxillofacial implants, 2013. 28(6): p. e393-e414.

4. Wright, E.F. and S.L. North, Management and Treatment of Temporomandibular Disorders: A Clinical Perspective. The Journal of Manual & Manipulative Therapy, 2009. 17(4): p. 247-254.

5. Sharma, S., et al., Etiological factors of temporomandibular joint disorders. National Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery, 2011. 2(2): p. 116-119.

6. Naeije, M., et al., Disc displacement within the human temporomandibular joint: a systematic review of a 'noisy annoyance'. J Oral Rehabil, 2013. 40(2): p. 139-58.

7. Ries, L.G.K. and F. Bérzin, Analysis of the postural stability in individuals with or without signs and symptoms of temporomandibular disorder. Brazilian oral research, 2008. 22(4): p. 378-383.

8. Svensson, P., et al., Relationships between craniofacial pain and bruxism. J Oral Rehabil, 2008. 35.

9. Lobbezoo, F., et al., Principles for the management of bruxism. J Oral Rehabil, 2008. 35.

10. Manfredini, D. and F. Lobbezoo, Relationship between bruxism and temporomandibular disorders: a systematic review of literature from 1998 to 2008. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod, 2010. 109.

11. Haketa, T., et al., Randomized clinical trial of treatment for TMJ disc displacement. J Dent Res, 2010. 89(11): p. 1259-63.

12. van Grootel, R.J., et al., Towards an optimal therapy strategy for myogenous TMD, physiotherapy compared with occlusal splint therapy in an RCT with therapy-and-patient-specific treatment durations. BMC Musculoskelet Disord, 2017. 18(1): p. 76.

13. Amorim, C.S.M., et al., Effectiveness of two physical therapy interventions, relative to dental treatment in individuals with bruxism: study protocol of a randomized clinical trial. Trials, 2014. 15(1): p. 8.

 

 

 

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Kinesio tape - FACT or FICTION?

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Kinesio tape - FACT or FICTION?

Kinesio tape (kinesiology tape) is a type of elastic tape made of cotton strip and acrylic adhesive. It is latex-free and water proof and usually wearable for multiple days. It can expand to 60% of its original length. It is designed to promote healing and recovery. It can provide support to joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments without limiting the range of movement. Kinesio tape also assists in pain reduction and lymphatic drainage. This is due to the lifting ability from the tape which stimulates the somatosensory systems and increases interstitial space.

 

Taping Method

There are many different application techniques and methods depending on the examination findings and the aim of the application. Here are some simplified examples.

Shape:

  • Fan cut – For swelling control e.g. lymphedema.
  • I cut (vertical) – For relaxing muscles or facilitating muscle contraction.
  • I cut (horizontal) – For unloading target tissues such as muscle fibres, ligaments or tendons
  • Y cut – For fascia release.

Tension (stretch percentage of the tape):

  • 10-15% - to relax a muscle
  • 15-30% - to activate a muscle
  • 30-50% - to release fascia
  • 50-80% - for supporting high tensile structure such as tendon or ligament
  • 100% - for mechanical correction

Other kinesio taping properties and uses

Kinesio tape could be worn 24 hours a day for a few days continuously (even weeks we’ve seen on some patients) and it is water proof. This means that the tape can be used throughout the process of whole recovery, from the inflammatory phase to repair and eventually the remodelling phase. Moreover, patient or athlete who found rigid tape helpful often can use kinesio tape as a progression to weaning off tape completely while they perform their rehabilitation exercises.  

 

Verdict of using Kinesio Tape

Clinical usage is based on assessment findings, subjective opinion, objective improvement, and patient preference, and it works better in skilled hands

The biggest criticism of using kinesio tape as treatment for some people was the lack of evidence in its benefit. However, besides the clinical benefits we see from patients, there has been growing evidence to show the advantage of using kinesio tape, and most likely there will be more in future.

 

If you are wondering if kinesio tape can improve your performance or help you heal,  give us a call. Here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy, we can give you an accurate diagnosis and treatment, as well as advice on the best course of action for your condition to get you back in action sooner than you could’ve imagined.  We have an expertise in musculoskeletal physiotherapy and are conveniently located near Beecroft, Cherrybrook, Hornsby, Hornsby Heights, Normanhurst, Pennant Hills, Wahroonga, Westleigh, West Pennant Hills, and West Pymble. So give one of our physiotherapists a call on (02) 8411 2050 to get started on a journey to a better you. 

 

Reference

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