Tag Archives: Sports Injuries

TMJ syndrome

TMJ syndrome

TMJ syndrome is broadly classified into 2 syndromes.
The temporo- mandibular joint (TMJ) is the synovial joint that connects the jaw to the skull. These joints are located just in front of each ear.

TMJ syndrome

Classification of TMJ syndrome

TMD is broadly classified into 2 syndromes:
• Muscle-related TMD (myogenous TMD), sometimes called TMD secondary to myofascial pain and dysfunction
• Joint-related TMD, or TMD secondary to true articular disease

Causes of TMJ syndrome

• trauma
• disease,
• wear and tear due to aging
• oral habits, such as chewing gum, tobacco, candy or ice

  • grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw

 

Signs and Symptoms of TMJ syndrome

• Pain in the jaw
• Clicking and popping sound in the ear
• Pain while chewing the food
• Stiff and sore jaw muscles
• headaches

Treatment for TMJ syndrome

general

  • • including heat to the joint,
    • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
    • avoiding chewing gum, candy, ice, or tobacco
    • stress reduction.

    • wear a mouth guard at night
    • avoid activities that require you to keep your mouth open such as fellatio
    • avoid eating food that is hard to chew such as steak

If you are interested in knowing a bit more about this syndrome, check out this link .

 

Physical therapy techniques for TMJ syndrome may include:

• Jaw exercises to strengthen muscles and improve flexibility and range of motion.
• Heat therapy to improve blood circulation in the jaw.
• Ice therapy to reduce swelling and relieve pain.
• Massage to relieve overall muscle tension.
• Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS),
• Movement of the temporomandibular (TM) joint to release scar tissue that restricts muscle movement and to improve range of motion.
• Ultrasound therapy- to reduce pain and swelling and improve circulation.

If you have any further queries please call PhysioNow. Our experienced Registered Physiotherapists would be happy to help you recover from TMJ syndrome.  There are Registered Physiotherapists at each of our locations that are trained specifically to assess and treat this injury.  Assessment takes about 40-50 minutes and each treatment typically takes about 30-40 mins.  Resolution of TMJ syndrome can be quite rapid with some patients only requiring a few visits for the pain the stop.

Call today!

Heat therapy

Heat and Cold therapy

How it works

When we apply Heat therapy, it improves circulation and blood flow to  that area due to increased temperature. Heat therapy can relax and soothe muscles and heal damaged tissue.

Heat therapy

Types

  • Dry Heat therapy includes sources like heating pads, dry heating packs, and even saunas. This heat is easy to apply.
  • Moist Heat therapy includes sources like steamed towels, moist heating packs, Theratherm heating pads that take moisture from the air, or hot baths. Moist heat may be slightly more effective as well as require less application time for the same results.

Contraindications

  • diabetes
  • dermatitis
  • vascular diseases
  • deep vein thrombosis
  • multiple sclerosis (MS)

 Heat is useful for relieving:

  • osteoarthritis
  • strains and sprains
  • tendonitis, or chronic irritation and stiffness in the tendons
  • warming up stiff muscles or tissue before activity
  • relieving pain or spasms relating to neck or back injury, including the lower back

Cold therapy

How it works

Cold therapy is also known as cryotherapy. It works by Louis- hunting reaction theory. When we apply Ice to an injured site, it reduces the blood flow by vasoconstriction. After some time, it causes vasodilatation and increases the blood flow to the area. This process goes on continuously. This reduces inflammation and swelling that causes pain, especially around a joint or a tendon. It can temporarily reduce nerve activity, which can also relieve pain.

Types of Cold Therapy

There are a number of different ways to apply cold therapy to an affected area. Treatment options include:

  • ice packs or frozen gel packs
  • coolant sprays
  • ice massage
  • ice baths

Cold treatment can help in cases of:

  • osteoarthritis
  • a recent injury
  • gout
  • strains
  • tendinitis, or irritation in the tendons following activity

Contraindications

  • people with sensory disorders
  • uncontrolled diabetes
  • You should not use cold therapy on stiff muscles or joints.
  • Cold therapy should not be used if you have poor circulation.

Here’s a general guide that helps you to decide which to use heat or ice : https://www.healthline.com/health/chronic-pain/treating-pain-with-heat-and-cold#cold-therapy

In General,  use ice for the first few days after an injury.  Beyond that, heat usually does the trick.  There is some evidence that suggests that using ice beyond the first few days can actually slow down injury healing.  It pushes away the healing agents that help you to get better.

If you have been injured and need advice or treatment, please call PhysioNow today.  We are always happy to help!

Benefits of massage therapy 

Benefits of Massage Therapy

There are many Benefits of massage therapy.  Below you will find some of the injuries that benefit most from massage therapy.

  1. Whiplash Injury

    A common injury from a motor vehicle accident, whiplash is a neck sprain resulting from the sudden forces typical of a car crash.

    Symptoms

    • Neck stiffness
    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Paresthesia
    • Shoulder, back or arm pain

    Benefits of massage therapy

    Massage therapy can be used for the treatment of both acute and chronic conditions. RMTs can work with a wide variety of patients, of all ages, in the treatment of illness, injury rehabilitation and disability.

  2. Fibromyalgia

    Fibromyalgia is associated with widespread chronic pain, fatigue, memory problems and mood changes. It occurs more often in women than in men. It is not a disease, but rather a syndrome that can be managed.

    • Benefits of massage therapy
    • The first will be relaxation to improve sleep.
    • The second benefit is improved muscle tonicity
    • A fifth benefit is diminishing the effects of any anxiety or depression
  3. Low Back Pain.

    The low back is susceptible to strain because of its weight-bearing function. Connection in movements, such as twisting and bending can cause Low back pain. Muscle strain is caused when muscle fibers are over-stretched or torn. Inflammation is common at the site of injury.  This is usually accompanied by pain with movement.

    Causes

    • Facet joint disease
    • Osteoarthritis
    • Muscle strain
    • Mechanical pain
    • Degenerative disc disease

    Benefits of massage therapy

    Some benefits of Massage therapy for Low Back Pain include the following:

    • Reduced pain.
    • Improved joint mobility.
    • Improving circulation.
    • Improving lymphatic drainage.
    • Reducing muscular tension.
  4.  

  5. Pregnancy

    Massage Therapy performed during pregnancy can:

    • Reduce anxiety
    • decrease symptoms of depression,
    • relieve muscle aches and joint pains,
    • improve labor outcomes and newborn health.

If you or someone you know could benefit from Massage Therapy,  please call PhysioNow. Our highly experienced Massage Therapists would be happy to help you!

Concussion

Concussion

The topic of concussion has been in the media quite frequently in the last several years. Top athletes, like Sidney Crosby, have definitely put concussion in the spotlight.

Crosby was unable to return to his game for almost a whole year because of persistent symptoms related to concussion. Furthermore, research has shown that 96% of deceased ex-NFL players have a form of brain damage called Chronic Traumatic Encephelaphathy (CTE), which may be related to repeated head traumas like concussions.

Safety Of Athletes Involved In Contact Sports

Concussion

This calls into question the safety of athletes involved in contact sports. In contact sports, there seems to be a higher incidence of these injuries.

However, concussions do not just happen to the famous pro-athlete. They can happen to athletes playing at any level or any age. They can do more than take away playing time.

Rowan Stringer, a high school rugby player, sadly made headlines in the media in 2013 after she lost her life to Second Impact Syndrome (SIS). This occurs when multiple concussions occur in rapid succession. SIS specifically affects the peadiatric and adolescent populations.

Concussions can also happen to anyone who is involved in an accident involving some form of head trauma. This includes falls and motor vehicle accidents. It is important to understand, that concussion is a serious injury.

If not managed appropriately, it can lead to persistent symptoms. Concussion can prevent you from returning to your beloved sport and/or regular life activities including work and family.

What Exactly Is Concussion?

So, what exactly is concussion and why does it have such a major impact? The changes that happen with concussion happen at a deep cellular level of the brain.

The injury starts with some form of trauma to the head, which creates stretching of the cells in the brain. These changes are microscopic and most often not picked up on imaging exams. As a result, concussion is often labelled as an invisible injury process.

Symptoms of Concussion

These chemical processes produce symptoms such as headache, nausea, dizziness and fogginess that are classic to concussion injuries.

Another major hallmark symptom of concussion is fatigue. This feeling of persistent tiredness is due to the energy crisis in the brain that results from the initial cellular stretching. These symptoms can wreak havoc on a person’s life and take them out of their sport or work.

How long do Concussion symptoms last?

Although the chemical reactions from the initial trauma take about 7 to 10 days to stabilize, the symptoms that are experienced by the patient can last for several weeks and months or even years. The lasting symptoms happen as a result of the changes that have been made to the different processing systems of the brain.

These changes produce an inability to make sense of either the visual or vestibular information in our environment. This overwhelms the brain and further aggravates the symptoms. It is vitally important, that appropriate management strategies have to be in place to treat these symptoms in an effective and timely manner so that an individual can return to their life.

How Do You Treat Concussion?

So how do you treat concussion if it is an invisible injury? The mechanism may be invisible but the symptoms are definitely not. Therefore, it is important to do a thorough assessment. This helps to understand what the exact symptoms are and which brain systems are at fault.

imPACT Testing

During the initial assessment, the patient will most likely be starting the appointment with a computerized test called imPACT, which is a heavily researched and validated neurocognitive test. This test looks at a variety of categories including verbal memory, visual memory, speed and reaction time. At completion it provides important information on a patient’s performance.

The test can be repeated over time and it can be used to check if there has been any meaningful change in performance. Once the imPACT test is completed, the patient will be assessed by the physiotherapist.

The Physiotherapist will go through a detailed history of the injury and symptoms to get an understanding of what the patient is going through and which brain systems are affected. The Physiotherapist will then go through a series of physical tests that test the visual and vestibular systems.

The therapist will be looking at how the patient is performing on the test and what symptoms are produced with the tests. If there are any other injuries present, such as neck pain, the physiotherapist will assess these issues as well.

Concussion Treatment

With the information gained from the assessment, the therapist will start providing the appropriate treatment to start reducing the symptoms of concussion. The treatment provided will vary from person to person because each case of concussion is unique.

Therefore, there cannot be a cookie-cutter approach to treating this complex injury. A large component of the initial treatment plan will involve education to rest and reset the brain and modify work/home/sport activities to allow for appropriate healing.

FOLLOW UP VISITS

On follow up visits, the therapist will prescribe specific exercises to start healing the affected systems in the brain. These exercises are important to be continued at home. Consistent and regular practice of these exercises will ensure improvement in the symptoms. It is important to understand that these exercises will produce some of the symptoms of concussion but they are meant to do so.

It is in this manner, that the visual and/or vestibular systems are retrained. Once the exercises are mastered at one level, the physiotherapist will continue to progress them to be more and more challenging until the patient is able to perform them without any symptoms. It is through these progressions that the therapist will be able to help the patient return to work and/or play and just life in general.

SUMMARY

Concussion symptoms can be very debilitating and can go on for a long time. It is important to seek out a qualified Physiotherapist trained in concussion management as soon as possible so that these symptoms are not affecting a person’s quality of life and taking them away from the things that they love.

At PhysioNow, we have highly trained Registered Physiotherapists ready to assess and treat Concussions.  Call today to get started on your recovery!

Symptoms of ACL tear

Symptoms of ACL tear

Signs and Symptoms of ACL tear

This blog will talk about signs and symptoms of ACL tear. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament, or ACL, is a very important structure of the knee joint. Its main function is to stop the shin bone from moving too far forward when the knee is straightened. The ACL also prevents the knee from rotating too far inward. As a result, a tear to this ligament can have very negative effects on knee function and stability.

A potential injury to the ACL has fairly easily recognizable signs and symptoms.

Mechanism of injury of ACL Tear

  • The mechanism of injury is very important in identifying an ACL injury. The ACL ligament is often injured when the leg is pivoted with the foot planted. It can also result from a direct blow to the outside of the knee. It is common to see ACL injuries in soccer and basketball because these types of movements happen quite often with these sports.

    Symptoms of ACL tear

  • Signs and Symptoms of ACL tear

  • A key sign of an ACL injury is the distinct “popping” or snapping sound that is heard at the time of the injury.
  • The presence of intense pain near the top of the shin bone also relates to the ACL.
  • The immediate presence of a lot of swelling within 2 hours of the injury is another important symptom of ACL tear.
  • With some other common knee injuries, swelling is very minimal or occurs much later.
  • The inability to weight bear on your knee is another clue that it might be an ACL injury.

How to know for sure if it is an ACL tear

The degree of ACL injury can vary from a partial tear to a full rupture. There are special tests that can be done to confirm the presence of an ACL injury and test the extent of the tear. However an MRI will provide the most detailed information about this type of injury.

Treatment for symptoms of an ACL tear

Surgery may be recommended if it is a full ACL tear. However, some individuals will opt to not proceed with surgical intervention. Instead, they proceed with conservative treatments such as Physiotherapy and Custom Knee Bracing. Patients with partial ACL tears will definitely require Physiotherapy treatment. This will promote healing, regain strength and optimal function.

Symptoms of ACL tear
Custom Knee Brace

Check out this link for further information regarding symptoms of ACL tear.

A fully trained Registered Physiotherapist will be able to guide you through an appropriate rehabilitation program so that strength and stability is restored in the knee. The goal is to return you to play and competition as quickly as possible!

If you or someone you know has suffered from symptoms of ACL tear, please call PhysioNow today. We have fully trained, Registered Physiotherapists ready to help! We also have fully trained staff able to guide you in your decision if you decide that you would like a knee brace. Both off the shelf and Custom Knee Bracing is available at all of the PhysioNow offices. Call today to get started on your recovery.