Engaging in the care of a loved one with a chronic health condition is an act of profound compassion and dedication. This article from Pain Alleviated offers a comprehensive guide to innovative and effective strategies for providing care. By understanding and implementing these methods, caregivers like yourself can significantly enhance the quality of life and well-being of those enduring ongoing health challenges.
Extend Understanding and Compassion
Offering a listening ear and a compassionate heart lays the groundwork for effective support. Understanding and empathizing with their experiences and emotions, and providing a supportive presence, can be immensely comforting. Such empathy strengthens the emotional bond and offers solace during times of physical and mental hardship.
Gain Insight into Their Health Condition
Educating yourself about your loved one's health condition is essential for providing effective support because the knowledge enables more effective communication with healthcare professionals and informed care. This may be worth reviewing if you're considering deepening your understanding by pursuing further education, such as a master's degree in nursing.
Engaging in an accredited online program can deepen your understanding and enhance your ability to assist, all while balancing your other responsibilities. This commitment to learning signifies a profound dedication to their well-being.
Provide Support during Medical Appointments
Accompanying your loved one to medical appointments is a concrete way of showing support. Providing transportation and companionship eases their logistical burden and offers emotional reassurance. Being present during these visits allows for a better understanding of their medical needs and treatments, fostering a more informed caregiving approach.
Foster Nutritional Well-being
Preparing meals that cater to the specific dietary needs of your loved one is a practical and nurturing form of support. Cooking nutritious, balanced meals that align with their medical requirements plays a significant role in managing their condition. This approach not only aids in their physical health but also provides a sense of normalcy and comfort through the enjoyment of carefully prepared meals.
Navigate the Maze of Health Insurance
Assisting in navigating health insurance is a crucial aspect of caregiving. Help your loved one understand their options, emphasizing they can’t be denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions.
Research and choose the right health insurance policy together to alleviate any stress and confusion associated with this often complex process. You may also need to help your loved one complete paperwork and communicate with insurance providers. Your support in these areas can relieve a significant burden on your loved one and ensure they receive the benefits they are entitled to.
Enhance Home Accessibility
Making adaptations to your loved one's living environment to suit their needs is vital. Even simple modifications to enhance accessibility and safety can significantly improve their daily life, promoting independence and comfort. From installing grab bars in the bathroom to rearranging furniture for easier mobility, these changes demonstrate a thoughtful and practical approach to their care.
Collaborate on Stress Reduction
Developing and practicing stress-reduction techniques together is crucial for mental and emotional health. Engaging in relaxation activities and emotional well-being exercises, especially during challenging times, helps manage the symptoms of their condition and strengthens your bond. This collaborative approach to stress management can significantly improve their overall quality of life.
Supporting a loved one with a chronic health condition through these unique and compassionate strategies can profoundly impact their life and well-being. Each approach, from emotional empathy to practical assistance, plays a vital role in enhancing their daily experience.
Providing holistic care strengthens the bond of understanding and support while laying a stable foundation as your loved one navigates their health journey. Remember that you don’t have to have it all figured out to be helpful; sometimes, you just need to be present to show your support.
The path to wholesome well-being often starts with small, impactful decisions. In this article, we present a list of easy-to-adopt strategies, spanning from your head down to your toes, which can rejuvenate your daily life. These are all geared toward supporting a harmonious existence, encompassing physical, emotional, and environmental wellness.
Water is the elixir of life. A well-hydrated body promotes efficient bodily functions, radiant skin, and heightened energy levels. Aiming to drink a minimum of eight glasses daily is a smart rule of thumb. Remember, the benefits of choosing water over sugary or overly caffeinated drinks are immense. In the realm of healthy living, this is a foundational step everyone can take.
Navigating Alcohol Intake and Seeking Help
While the occasional glass of wine or beer might be pleasurable, moderation is key. Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to various health concerns, both mentally and physically. If anyone feels trapped in the clutches of addiction, seeking assistance is crucial. The best inpatient drug rehab centers offer guidance, ensuring a brighter, sober future. When selecting an inpatient facility, it's important to take into account factors such as accommodations, accreditations, treatment approaches, location, and feedback from previous patients.
Wise Nutritional Additions
Even with a balanced diet, some nutritional gaps might persist. A daily multivitamin can be a strategic ally, fortifying your body with essential nutrients. However, as with all supplements, it's recommended to seek expert advice to understand what's best for individual needs, ensuring one's journey toward healthy living is well-informed.
Creating a Home Sanctuary
Your surroundings deeply influence your state of mind. Organized, clean spaces foster a sense of peace, reducing stress and enhancing productivity. With numerous online resources offering cleaning and organizing tips, it's easier than ever to create a serene sanctuary at home. A calm, tidy space truly aligns with the philosophy of healthy living.
Eating More Whole Grains
Refined grains often equate to empty calories with little nutritional benefit. In contrast, whole grains brim with essential nutrients that our bodies crave. They provide sustained energy and aid in digestive health. Choices such as brown rice, barley, and oatmeal are not only flavorful but healthful. Indeed, incorporating them into our diet resonates deeply with a commitment to healthy living.
Adding Healthy Spices and Herbs
A sprinkle of herbs and spices can transform a dish, adding a burst of flavor without the health concerns associated with excessive salt. With options like rosemary, thyme, cumin, and cilantro, culinary adventures await. Each time you reach for these natural flavor enhancers, you're making a choice in favor of healthy living.
Smart Movement Choices
Prolonged periods of sitting are associated with several health risks. Setting timely reminders to stand or stretch breaks this sedentary cycle. Even brief walks can have significant benefits. These moments of activity not only rejuvenate the body but also combat lethargy. Overall, such actions play a pivotal role in enhancing our general wellness.
The Power of Posture
Our spines bear the weight of daily life, literally. Ensuring you maintain a straight back, whether seated or standing, can prevent long-term ailments. Correct posture supports proper organ function, facilitates breathing, and radiates confidence. This seemingly simple act is a testament to the comprehensive nature of healthy living.
Embarking on a journey filled with these straightforward strategies can be the turning point in one's quest for total well-being. Each choice, whether related to diet, activity, seeking help for addiction, or environment, reflects a commitment to oneself. As the saying goes, "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." Start today, embrace these tactics, and watch as your life flourishes in the embrace of healthy living.
Experience relief from pain and discomfort with Pain Alleviated. Visit our website today to discover natural remedies, expert advice, and effective solutions.
Let's face it. Good posture is important. Not only does it make you look more confident, but it also helps you avoid pain and injuries in the long run. Unfortunately, poor posture has become all too common in recent years thanks to the rise of sedentary lifestyles and the increased use of technology. If you're looking to improve your posture, then you've come to the right place. Today, guest writer Laura Carlson shares ways that you can start standing a little taller today.
1. Exercise Regularly
Verywell Fit notes that there are specific exercises that you can do to help improve your posture. These include things like yoga, Pilates, and even basic stretching exercises. Just a few minutes each day can make a big difference in how you carry yourself throughout the day. This includes something as simple as getting out for a stroll around the neighborhood or a public park. If you’re fortunate enough to live or work in an area with a high Walk Score, you have the added convenience of ample space and places to walk, jog, or ride your bike.
2. Consider Replacing Your Mattress
According to The Natural Sleep Store, if your mattress is too soft, then it can actually contribute to poor posture. That's because when you sleep on a soft mattress, your spine doesn't have the support it needs to maintain its natural alignment. As a result, you may find yourself waking up with back pain or stiffness. A firmer mattress will provide the support your spine needs and help improve your posture in the long run.
3. Practice Yoga
Yoga is an excellent way to improve your posture since it involves both stretching and strengthening exercises. In addition, yoga helps to increase flexibility which can also help improve your posture. There are many different poses that can help with posture, so be sure to ask your instructor for guidance if you're new to yoga.
4. Avoid Tech Neck
One of the biggest culprits of poor posture is "tech neck." This is when you spend hours hunched over looking at a screen — whether it's your computer at work or your phone when you're scrolling through social media. To avoid “tech neck," be sure to take breaks often and practice proper ergonomics when using technology.
For example, invest in a stand for your laptop so you don't have to hunch over when working from home. You’ll also want to look into ergonomically appropriate furniture. Then, you can more easily adjust where you hold the device to read, which allows you to avoid the strain that causes “tech neck.”
5. Consider Your Height
When people are shorter, they tend to not have as much of an issue with their posture as taller people do because they have to elongate their bodies and look up in order to see what’s going on around them. In addition, being taller can lead to back problems because of the extra weight that your spine has to support. As a result, taller people should be especially mindful of their posture and take steps to improve it.
6. Visit a Chiropractor
For some people, back pain is caused by subluxations — when one or more of your vertebrae become misaligned. Chiropractors are trained professionals who specialize in correcting subluxations and restoring proper alignment. If you're dealing with back pain or poor posture, then visiting a chiropractor may be a good option for you. The good news is that many insurance plans cover chiropractic care, so look into your options, including what’s available through your provider through ACA and Medicaid.
7. Keep Your Medical Records Organized
If you have chronic back pain or other issues that affect your posture, then chances are you've seen multiple doctors and specialists over the years. Keeping all of your medical records organized can be helpful if you ever need to see another doctor or specialist since they'll be able to easily access your history. This will also save you time and hassle down the road.
8. Get Regular Massages
Massages aren't just relaxing — they can also help improve your posture. Posture Stars explains that massages help release tension in muscles and connective tissue, which can lead to improved range of motion and less pain. As a result, getting regular massages can help keep your muscles loose and relaxed, making it easier for you to maintain good posture.
9. Wear Comfortable Sho
Wearing shoes that are comfortable and offer support can help reduce stress on your feet, ankles, knees, and hips — all of which can lead to improved posture. Comfortable shoes also help promote proper alignment which can further reduce stress on these joints. When choosing shoes, be sure to select ones that offer arch support and cushioning to prevent injury and promote comfort.
Pursue Your Best Posture
We often take our posture for granted, especially as we sit increasingly close and hunched over our computers and devices. Improving your posture may seem like a major task, but it's definitely achievable with some effort and dedication. By following the tips above, you'll be well on your way to standing tall and proud in no time!
Pain Alleviated can get you moving and feeling better in just a few weeks. Reach out today to get started!
The first question I get is often, “So, what do you guys do?” The answer really is, perhaps contrary to our name, is that we do not focus on the pain! We focus on the movement. It is our firm belief that the pain is really coming from one’s movement habits, that is, the way we sit, stand, and (mostly) the way we walk.
Take, for example, shin pain while walking. The common approach to help shin pain while walking would be less activity, less walking, maybe an ice pack, etc… But the answer is really that shin pain while walking is caused by HOW one is walking.
The pain may stem from the ankles caving inward. The pain may come from not rolling on the outside of the foot and the toes not “gripping” the ground. The pain may be from one foot turning out. The shin pain while walking may be the result of the feet not taking the body’s weight, ultimately from the steps being too large.
So when you come to Pain Alleviated, we will work directly on how you walk! That is our whole approach. Change the way you are walking into a gait that is more aligned, and the pain (most often) will take care of itself.
The thing is, nobody (almost ever) notices the way we walk. 99.99% (my estimate) of people take this daily motion for granted. Until something goes wrong and there is pain. Then it becomes the most important thing in life. Yet even then, people don’t know how to fix it. That’s where we come in! We will work with you to develop a walk that is more aligned, more natural, the way the body was designed to move.
Take the example of shin pain while walking. This pain may stop you from achieving your goal of 10,000 steps per day. But before we go for quantity, let’s focus on quality. By quality, I mean working on the walk itself. Once you have developed the walk correctly, attaining 10,000 steps in one day will be much easier. So will other activities like jogging, jumping, lifting, etc…
The shin pain while walking is letting you know something is wrong. Work with us to find out what that is, but most importantly, how to change it!
Ed Ledgard's recent certification from The American Council on Exercise (ACE) as a personal trainer is a significant accomplishment that will help him establish a strong foundation for his career in fitness. The ACE-CPT (Certified Personal Trainer) certification is widely recognized and respected within the fitness industry, and is considered a benchmark of excellence for personal trainers.
Personal training is a rewarding career that allows fitness professionals to work closely with clients to help them achieve their fitness goals. As a personal trainer, Ed will be responsible for developing customized fitness plans for clients, helping them to improve their strength, flexibility, endurance, and overall health. He will also provide guidance and support to clients, helping them to stay motivated and on track as they work towards their fitness goals.
The ACE-CPT certification is designed to ensure that personal trainers have a solid understanding of the human body, exercise physiology, and nutrition. To earn this certification, Ed had to pass a rigorous exam that covers topics such as exercise programming, biomechanics, and client consultation. He also had to demonstrate practical knowledge of exercise techniques and program design, and show that he could work effectively with clients.
The ACE-CPT certification is a significant accomplishment that will help Ed establish his credibility as a personal trainer. It shows that he has the knowledge and skills necessary to develop effective fitness programs, and that he is committed to staying up-to-date with the latest trends and research in the fitness industry. It also demonstrates his dedication to providing high-quality service to his clients.
For clients looking to hire a personal trainer, the ACE-CPT certification is an important consideration. It provides assurance that the trainer has the education and training necessary to develop safe and effective fitness programs. Clients can also be confident that their personal trainer is committed to ongoing education and professional development, and is well-versed in the latest research and trends in the fitness industry.
In conclusion, Ed Ledgard's recent certification from The American Council on Exercise (ACE) as a personal trainer is a significant achievement that demonstrates his commitment to the fitness industry and his clients. The ACE-CPT certification is widely recognized and respected within the industry, and provides assurance that Ed has the knowledge and skills necessary to provide high-quality personal training services. As Ed begins his career as a personal trainer, this certification will serve as a strong foundation for his success.
Walking is what we do more than any other activity, be it athletically or professionally. Yet no one else will teach you how to walk correctly to alleviate pain. Everyone takes this action for granted, that is, until something goes wrong. Walking correctly keeps muscles healthy and accustomed to a certain level of work. It also improves muscle control, which can be very beneficial to your hips and your performance when walking or running.
Proper posture can be learned by doing the right kind of exercise. You might respond, “everyone knows how to walk, just put one foot in front of the other!” But I would say no one walks correctly, with the exception of little kids—about two years old or just after. After that, kids are made to sit down for extended periods of time, and their movement patterns suffer.
The simple truth is, more than I can describe in words, if you want to see what it means to walk correctly, just watch little kids! Their knees remain bent with each step, they take small steps, their upper body shows good posture, they keep their weight on their feet, and their feet roll on the outside portion with each step. Yet once they start to sit for extended periods of time, their walk deteriorates.
By the time they are an adult, bad habits are the norm. Strides get too large, thus “snapping” the knee back with every step. They may “jar” their knee to the side with one or both knees with every step. They may bend over at the hips, putting pressure on the lower back. Their arms swing like a “little” pendulum from the elbow instead of the way they should—from the shoulders. The head may tilt forwards too much, or even worse, to one side. These are general patterns of decline. Everyone walks a little bit differently. Different is good in many parts of life, but in walking, the body functions best when walking a specific way.
For more information on walking correctly, visit www.painalleviated.com!
Your individual movement will guide the choice of exercises. This means individualized exercise is what is important. If you have a weak neck, playing golf for five hours will not help if you walk off the course and continue to hold your head down. But Head Lifts will help to strengthen the neck. If your walk is flat and out of alignment, working out for two hours on an exercise machine will not help if you continue to walk in the same old way. But Low Walks may help. If your back is slouched, playing squash or tennis will not help if you walk away in the same slouched position. But Standing Curls may help.
The best exercise restores an individual to favorable movement patterns. Neck pain may lessen by doing head lifts or visual turns to loosen the neck so that it is used more freely. A back problem may improve when a weak knee is strengthened by Single Knee Bends (hard to believe).
It is one’s movement, not necessarily one’s pain, that guides the selection of exercises. Note that there is really no single exercise or set of exercises that is “good for the low back” or “helps a bad knee.” Yes, walking, dumbbell sit-ups, and forward bends are favorable for the lower back. However, if the lower back problem is ultimately caused by a one-sided walk none of these exercises will really solve the problem.
It is important to note that any exercise has its own reward. Anyone who exercises, from lifting heavy weights, to sitting in a chair and moving one’s knees, from jogging 10 miles to lying on one’s back and doing simple knee rolls, knows the great value of exercise.
It is easy to blame a sprained knee on a rock that was in the way, a sudden leap for a ball, an old injury, or a structural weakness. But a sprained knee may well be a weak knee. A strong knee–one that has not been weakened by walking poorly and other inappropriate movement patterns–can take ordinary twists and spills with minimum difficulty.
Only through exercise can the knee be made strong. The basic reason for exercise is to develop a body that can perform when we want it to perform–one that is resilient to the occasional jolts of everyday life. This raises a point pertinent to other approaches to exercise.
What happens when something goes wrong? Should I quit? Or go on, even if it hurts? In our view, there is a real response to the issue of pain. A solution. That solution is–look to the way we move. Herein lies the cause of pain. When we find the cause, we select the exercise to treat the cause.
Finally, an exercise that heads straight for a weakness may be hard, but it will feel great afterwards. You will have no doubt of its effect. The idea behind this is actually simple. First, make an observation about your own movement that is not optimal or off (you can watch yourself walk in a mirror or have someone video your walk). You could also have another person observe your movement and find the same. It could be how you sit, or stand, or cut the grass. For example, let us say the shoulders are too high or too far forward.
Second, pick an exercise that will help correct this issue. For this example, pick an exercise that lowers the shoulders or relaxes the shoulders or brings the shoulders back to a better position. Third, use this exercise to help become aware of the position of the shoulders and apply it to normal every day movement.
Your own movement patterns will guide the selection of exercises to get you moving—and feeling—more in alignment.
For more help in finding the right exercises for you, schedule a 1-1 coaching session at www.painalleviated.com
Many people seek exercise in some form: yoga, walking, working out in a gym, sports, a recommended fitness routine, and so on. Some people work out every day doing something they believe is beneficial. This is good in the sense that movement, in general, is good. The human body is designed to move.
The best reason to exercise is to make life significantly better. In order to make our lives work, the body must be in excellent shape. Look at children. Notice how much energy they have. They are not limited by aches and pains or the fatigue of sitting for hours in a chair. They have lots of energy. They have the will to try new things, experiment, fall, get up again, and play.
This is what exercise should allow us to do. It should give us the clarity of mind to make wiser decisions. It should give us the energy to solve hard problems. It should give us the vibrance to make life fun and enjoyable. These are the larger goals of this approach to exercise. This approach teaches one about relaxation, lightness, and well-being. It works.
Thus, the purpose of exercise is not solely to build muscles. It is not at all to impress someone else. It is not to run a marathon, although that is a great achievement. It is not solely to lift an even heavier weight. Rather, the purpose is living, to your utmost capability.
There will be several direct effects of a sound exercise program. The most obvious is one’s physical health. For my Dad, his exercise program has caused a dramatic physical shift. Joy? A point difficult to believe. That is, for those who have not practiced exercise of any kind. I suggest that this approach of exercise, of all of the different types of exercise, is the most likely to produce a sense of joy while doing the exercises themselves.
You may find this point counter-intuitive. It is possible to enjoy exercising. There are professional skaters who truly enjoy skating. There are gymnasts who truly enjoy gymnastics (I was one of them). I suggest that it is possible for the average person to enjoy doing their exercises, whether or not they are based on the views of this approach. Sensing an exercise–doing it over and over again–builds familiarity. Doing more of that exercise over time builds strength that is noticeable. It produces an awareness of the body, of things that happen in the mind as well as to the body. These effects become observable and enjoyable.
Finally, the right exercise will always make one feel good. Just as a jogger knows the sense of relaxation that comes after a good jog, so too can ordinary exercise bring the same satisfaction. When you finish your exercises, your mind has been with what you were doing. Perhaps you achieved one or two new little physical things, and the sense of well-being is clear. This sense of well-being is accessible to all.
For more help selecting exercises to help you feel your best, head over to www.painalleviated.com
Watching how someone moves is the foundation for diagnosing what is wrong. Most approaches prescribe exercises based on the location of the pain. This may seem right, but to have lasting results, we must address the underlying movement patterns causing the discomfort. By movement patterns, we mean everyday activities, the way we sit, the way we stand, and (most importantly) the way we walk. Both strong and weak components are evident by how we move.
A walk favoring one side will build up that side, while making the other side weaker. This lop-sidedness might be seen in the back and legs, even in the muscle-mass of those parts. If someone holds an arm and shoulder up high when they walk, this would cause shoulder and neck stress, as well as stress for the heart.
Everyone has weaknesses. By weaknesses, I mean sooner or later something will go wrong and cause problems in health. Health problems built up by weaknesses will be different for different people. They might come out as back pain for someone. They might come out as headaches, fatigue, or pain in the side for someone else. At any rate, built up weaknesses will come out as a limit to activity or to energy in some physical way. Those limits are developing now, even if we are not aware of them.
Imbalances in movement from years of bad movement habits cause certain weaknesses. Exercises that address these weaknesses and bring about change in the movement may not completely bring the body around to the place it ought to be. Nevertheless, such exercises targeting the weaknesses may prevent the body from getting worse and creating greater problems. Such effort can even bring about complete relief from pain.
Observing one’s walk will reveal a large number of problems. For example, a tight arm swing or little arm swing will reveal a tense shoulder. If the shoulders are uneven, or there is a slight tilt of the head, this results in a weak shoulder. Dipping to one side after the foot has landed produces a kind of cross-lateral torque. The above bad movement habits may not seem that important, but they can lead to problems later on.
These problems could take the form of bursitis, neck pain, or heart problems. Such problems may seem dormant now, although effects like stress, fatigue, or less body function might be felt now. These might be considered subtle but important limitations. The big point to appreciate is that weakness is revealed in everyday movement. Our everyday movement patterns, particularly the ways we move that are not in alignment, will reveal both current and potential health problems.
For example, a heart problem is usually only experienced when a person is older and has difficulties. However, the potential for such health problems is shown now by one’s everyday movement patterns. If you could prevent serious health problems from occurring in the future, would you at least try the exercises? I would hope the answer to that is clear.
For help in selecting the best exercises for you, schedule a 1-1 coaching session at www.painalleviated.com
Any exercise affects some muscles more than others. The idea we are talking about here is that pain is caused by body imbalances. Thus, the best exercises are those that strengthen weak areas.
Consider the single-hand push-up against the wall. For this exercise, you stand about two feet from the wall, and put one hand on the wall. Bend and straighten the arm. The exercise will strengthen the shoulder, arm, and side of the upper back. Next, consider the dumbbell swing. Here the person takes a five or ten-pound dumbbell in one hand and swings it from below up to the chest. The exercise will lower the given shoulder.
Part of my Dad’s problem that he sought Bernie’s help for, was a muscle imbalance of the shoulders. He had a tense and over-developed right shoulder, and a weak and lower left shoulder. To correct this imbalance, Bernie prescribed single-hand dumbbell swings for the right shoulder, and single-hand push-ups against the wall for the left shoulder.
Similarly, my Dad’s left leg was noticeably weaker than his right leg. Single leg hops and single knee bends strengthen a weak leg. So, he does those exercises for his left leg. However, his right leg is more tense, and stiff. So, when he stretches by doing forward bends, he spends more time over his right leg. In both cases of the legs, it is obvious which side needs work. For the single-leg hops and single knee bends, the left side will be harder. The goal is to make the weak side equal to the strong side.
Often it is clear there is an imbalance between the sides. One knee may be weak, one shoulder is painful, one leg may not be as strong as the other, or one arm may not reach as well as the other. It is important that this problem not become worse, so exercise to correct the situation if possible.
Suppose one knee is weak or painful if moved the wrong way. The goal is to find the exercise that corrects the everyday movement pattern that is causing the situation. Perhaps the foot is turned out, or the step is not pushing the knee to hold forward. Or maybe the knee is caving inward. There is no need to exercise the other knee. Work on the problem knee. It is that one that will limit you.
For more information on exercising to improve weaknesses, visit www.painalleviated.com