Yoga with Jessica: Low Lunge

low lunge 1.jpgI apologize for my absence during October. Have you ever had a day, week or even a month of hectic, busy, whirlwind activity? That was my October- a family wedding a few hours away, subbing 2 yoga classes (in addition to my 4 classes a week) and extra hours at my regular job. Whew! And, just like that, October is gone!

Now we are into November and Thanksgiving is closing in fast. Thanksgiving is a time of reflection and gratitude. I am very grateful I had the time and ability to devote to all my extra duties during October. I admit that I felt a bit overwhelmed at times and guilty for not getting my October blog completed. However, the guilt was temporary. I had to choose to let go of a few things so I didn’t drown in the busyness and exhaustion. I chose to take care of me…something that yoga has taught me.

For this month’s pose, I’d like to focus on the low lunge. The low lunge is an energizing pose with the ability to help clear your mind. With that clear mind, you can focus on all you have to be grateful for in this busy season.

This position can be quite simple and basic, or you can deepen and sink into it. The low lunge improves flexibility and strength in your hips, legs, and knees. As you become stronger and steadier, you can add your arms upward to improve shoulder, arm, and core strength. This is a MUST do position if your job entails a lot of sitting or if you travel a lot. The low lunge position can even be modified so you can do it from your chair.

Play around with this pose. Let it open and strengthen those hips and legs. Find your version of the pose, sink in, clear that mind and tune into your gratitude.

From my home to yours, have a blessed Thanksgiving.

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Which is better for aches and pains- heat or ice?

Ice or heat

Pains and aches are unwanted feelings that seem to affect everyone. There really is not a question of if you will ever hurt, but more of a question of when and where. With pain being as common as rain in April, medical professionals have developed ways to modulate its nagging. Just as we use an umbrella to lessen the effects of those spring showers; we can also use heat and ice to lessen the effects of pain. These techniques have been around for ages and work well. One of the most common reasons people resist using heat and/or ice is due to a lack of understanding when and how to use each modality.

Which one should I use?

  • Heat: Heat is best used for aches and pains that are termed chronic in nature, or have been going on for a long period of time. These aches and pains are the nagging and lingering aches that seem to never go away and you can’t really put your finger on when they started. Even more specifically heat is best used for aches and pains that are associated with a muscle. Your muscles are close to the surface which the heat can affect the most.
  • Ice: Ice is best used for aches and pains that are termed acute, or just started in the last few days. These aches and pains are normally sharp, and you remember what happened to start them. Even more specifically, ice is best used for aches and pains that are associated with swelling.

Does time of day or activity level affect whether I use heat or ice?

  • Heat: Heat is best in the morning or prior to an activity. Heat helps decrease stiffness which will help you move better, and hopefully with fewer pains and aches.
  • Ice: Ice is best towards the end of the day or after activity. Ice helps reduce soreness and decrease swelling. Typically both swelling and soreness increase with activity. Thus, applying ice after activity or after a long day will help reduce your pains and aches.

How should I apply heat or ice?

  • Heat: Heat is best when applied to the sore area is a loose fashion. It is best to have a barrier between the heat source and your skin. This will help avoid any burns or adverse effects between the heat and the skin. A tip which will help increase the effects of the heat is to also drape a towel over the top of the heat source. Performing this extra step will help keep the heat around the area that you are trying to treat.
  • Ice: Ice is best when applied to the sore area in a snugly wrapped fashion to increase the direct contact area. It is best to have a barrier between the ice source and your skin. This will help to avoid frostbite or other adverse effects on your skin. An extra tip is to wrap the ice source in a towel that is dampened with cold water. This will allow the ice to stay cooler for a longer period of time.

What are the time frames for heat and ice?

  • Heat: Heat can be applied for around 15 to 25 minutes. At this time it is best to take the heat source off and let the area of the body return to its normal temperature. Another factor to monitor is the condition of the skin. When using heat it is common for increased moisture to be present on the skin that you are treating. You want to let the skin dry to avoid break down that could occur. Once the skin and the area being treated return to the state of the surrounding areas, you can reapply. (roughly once every 60 to 90 min)
  • Ice: Ice can be applied for around 15 to 25 minutes. At this time it is best to take the ice source off and let the area of the body return to its normal temperature. Another thing to monitor is the condition of the skin. When using ice it is common for redness to be present on the skin that you are treating. You want to let the skin return to its normal color to avoid reversing the benefits of ice. Once the skin and the area being treated return to the state of the surrounding areas, you can reapply. (roughly once every 60 to 90 min)

If you continue to experience your aches and pains, please consult with your medical provider for further treatment.

Cameron welcomes new directors

Cameron Hospital is pleased to announce the appointment of three new directors to the management team.
tracy-donleyTracy Donley was named the Community Health Director, and began in her role on September 14. She will be focused on bringing new programs to the area as well as partnering with organizations to improve the available resources in the community.
Tracy comes to Cameron from Infinity PAN and Universal Home Health and Hospice where she served as the Director of Community Outreach. Before her time at Infinity PAN and Universal Home Health and Hospice, Donley served as the Regional Patient Care Director at Nightingale Home Health and Hospice and the Director of Patient Care and Admissions at Life Care Center in Fort Wayne.
She holds Bachelor of Science degree from Northwest State Community College (Archobold, OH), as well as an Associates of Arts degree from Northwest State Community College. In addition, Donley earned her certification in Health Facility Administration and Marketing from Indiana Wesleyan University.
scheibel-amberAmber Schiebel was named the Emergency Department Director, and began in her role on September 25. She comes to Cameron from Dupont Hospital where she served as the Emergency Department Team Manager. Before her time with Dupont Hospital, Schiebel served as the Quality Accreditation Specialist and as an Emergency Department nurse with Parkview Regional Medical Center. She also served as a Nursing Department Teaching Assistant at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.
Amber holds Bachelor of Science degrees in both Biology and Nursing from Saint Mary’s College (Notre Dame, IN) and holds a Master’s Degree from Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. She is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International and has participated as a member of the Indiana Association of Healthcare Quality (InAHQ) and the Northeast Indiana Organization of Nurse Executives (NEIONE).
john-martinsky.jpgJohn Martinsky was appointed as the Laboratory Director. He began in his new role on October 9. John comes to Cameron from Adams Memorial Hospital where he served as the Director of Physician Operations. Before his time at Adams Memorial, Martinsky served as the Vice President of Clinical Services at Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County (WY) and the Chief Quality Officer and Lab Director at Bluffton Regional Medical Center. He has served as an adjunct faculty member at Ivy Tech Community College since 2006.
John holds Bachelor of Science degree from Southern Illinois University (Carbondale, IL) and holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Central Missouri (Warrensburg, MO). He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE), a Diplomate in Laboratory Management (ASCP) and holds the Indiana Health Facility Administrator license.

3 tips for preventing back pain while completing Fall chores

Winter is coming, but before we get to enjoy the wonders of the holiday season we have to get through the Autumn preparations. This typically means a lot of yard work and household chores that need to be done before snow falls. Cleaning out the garage, trimming bushes, cleaning the gutters, and of course dealing with all the leaves are some of the most popular Fall chores. These tasks are a figurative pain in the neck and back, but can very easily become a literal pain. Back pain is one of the most common injuries seen in our society. An estimated 80% of the population will, at some point, struggle with lower back pain. One of the leading causes of back injuries is the result of improper lifting. To help you avoid meeting with your local physical therapist, below are three 3 tips to avoid injury while completing your Fall chores.

  1. Maintain proper posture during all activities or chores. The easiest way to monitor your posture is to pay attention to where your head is in comparison to the rest of your body. If your head is in front of your whole body then you are increasing the pressure being placed throughout your spine.Spinal pressure
  2. Keep your work close to your body. You will place less stress on your muscles and ultimately your back the closer you keep items to you. This tip can be utilized to when racking, lifting, and of course cleaning the gutters. It’s safer to reset your ladder instead of reaching an extra 6 inches.
  3. Keep items close to your body and lift with your legs. I am sure everyone has heard the phrase “don’t lift with your back.” This tip combines the above two and adds a third step; which is lifting with your legs. When lifting an object you should maintain your good posture, keep the items close to your body and bend the legs to get down to the objects. If done correctly when you return the standing position you will use your legs and not your back. Below are a couple of techniques you can try.

squat lifting.jpghalf-kneeling lifting.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breast Cancer: Lymphedema

lymphedemaOctober is National Breast Cancer Awareness month. Approximately 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. However, very few know much about lymphedema, a possible complication of breast cancer.

Lymphedema is the swelling that occurs when fluid accumulates in the skin layers due to a compromised lymphatic system. This frequently occurs with lymph node removal and radiation therapy. Lymphedema can occur in the torso, as well as in the chest.

So, how do you treat or prevent lymphedema? Check out the article below for more information on an exercise program to help with issues associated with lymphedema. Also listed below is a link to an article discussing possible precautions to take for those diagnosed with lymphedema.

Breast Cancer: Early Detection

breast cancer.jpgBreast cancer is the most common cancer in American women, except for skin cancers. About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point.

The good news is that early detection can save a life. Breast cancer is sometimes found after symptoms appear, but many women with breast cancer have no symptoms. This is why regular breast cancer screening is so important.  A mammogram – the screening test for breast cancer – can help find breast cancer early when it’s easier to treat.

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month is a chance to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer. Make a difference! Spread the word about mammograms and encourage communities, organizations, families, and individuals to get involved.

To learn more about breast cancer, visit the American Cancer Society website to find the latest information.

 

Yoga with Jessica- Yin Yoga

dreamstime_xl_67715989Ahhhh, fall.  This is my favorite time of the year.  I love the colors, the smells, the warmth during the day and the cool nights.  This is a busy time of year for us as my husband is a farmer, so harvest is approaching quickly.  Of course, the holidays are also quickly approaching too.

I want to take a break from talking about poses this month. Instead, I would like to focus on all the busyness we face as the busy time of the year is quickly approaching. What does a typical day look like for you? Do you work? Do you attend school? Are you focused on a sick family member? Are you trying to keep your kids on track? Are you trying to keep up with social media? As the holidays creep upon us, we tend to get more hurried and more stressed. The word chaotic comes to my mind. In this season, do you ever take time to be completely silent and still for yourself?

I would like to teach you a little about Yin Yoga this month. Back in August, I completed a 30-hour training on yin yoga.  The teacher was extremely knowledgeable and he taught flawlessly.  Everything he said made complete sense to me.  I had this feeling of, “where have you been all my life?”  Oh how much easier school would have been had all teachers taught like him.

We have 3 principles in yin yoga:

  1. Play the edge, specifically, YOUR edge.
  2. Relax your muscles.
  3. Stay relatively still for a relatively long period of time.

Wait, is number 3 correct?  Yes, it is!  In a yin yoga class, you hold the pose anywhere from 2 to 20 minutes! This is the exact reason why this busy season is the perfect time to check out a yin yoga class!  You are busy all day long.  How much of that busy time is spent on you?  Seriously, how much time do you give yourself?  Do you even take time to eat lunch away from your desk?  With the kiddos in sports, are you eating at the concession stand more times than not?  Try a yin yoga class and you WILL be totally focused on you for the entire time.

Yin yoga MAKES you take the focus off everyone and everything else but you. You are in control of the poses, and it is up to you how deep your body will go.  Whereas most yoga classes have some type of music playing in the background, most yin classes are done in silence.  It’s a time of quiet where you come into yourself.

I have now taught 4 yin yoga classes since my training, and I would say 90% of my students LOVED the class.  Yin yoga can be very difficult if you are unable to stay still for a very long time, but it’s not impossible, though.  You’ll learn much about yourself!

In closing, please find time for yourself!  Even if it is not a yin yoga class, please take time to do something just for you.  Go for a walk amongst the colorful backdrop that is fall, watch a sunset, or take a long, relaxing, fragrant bubble bath.  Whatever creates peace & quiet for you.  Be good to yourself!

Namaste

Using Mindfulness Meditation

dreamstime_xl_29933419What is mindfulness meditation? Mindfulness meditation is the process of bringing one’s attention to the current moment. Focusing the mind and increasing body awareness, self-awareness, regulation of emotion and regulation of attention.

There have been many studies evaluating the health benefits of mindfulness meditation. Some of the possible benefits are:

  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Lowering cholesterol
  • Lowering the risk of heart disease
  • Lowering the risk of stroke
  • Relieve stress
  • Decrease depression
  • Improving insomnia
  • Decreasing anxiety and worry
  • Increase productivity
  • Increase concentration
  • Increase happiness
  • Improve well-being and inner peace.

For an introduction to mindfulness meditation click here to sample different forms of meditation.

Sources: US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health  and Mindful

 

Vestibular Awareness Week: Are you feeling dizzy?

It’s Balance Awareness Week so here are some interesting facts about vestibular disorders which can affect your balance!  If you experience any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor about receiving specialized treatment at Cameron’s Rehabilitation Center.  Our Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapists are members of the Vestibular Disorders Association. The vestibular system includes the parts of […]

Diabetes: Do you know the signs?

dreamstime_xl_64347052.jpgAccording to the 2017 National Diabetes Statistics Report, an estimated 30.3 million people in the U.S. have diabetes. Of those, 23.1 million have been diagnosed and 7.2 million don’t even know they have it. That’s a lot of people walking around with a potentially life threatening, undiagnosed disease. After all, the complications of diabetes can be very severe. In the U.S.:

  • The number one cause of death from diabetes is heart attack.
  • The number one cause of blindness

Some other interesting facts from the report:

  • More men have diabetes than women at 15.3 million and 14.9 million respectively.
  • More men are undiagnosed than women at 4.0 million and 3.1 million respectively.
  • More women are diagnosed than men at 11.7 million and 11.3 million respectively.

But before we get to the disease, let’s take an anatomy review. Your pancreas is a large organ that sits behind the stomach and it has two functions. The first function is to secrete digestive enzymes that help break down our food and is done by about 95% of the pancreas. The second function is to make and secrete insulin. Insulin is made in the beta cells of the pancreas and is a very important hormone. Insulin acts like a little key that opens up your cells and allows glucose to move from the bloodstream into the cells where it is burned for heat and energy. Glucose is our body’s fuel and it comes from the carbohydrates in our food. Without insulin, our cells would starve.

So what is diabetes? For the purposes of this article we will talk about 4 types of the disease; type 1, type 2, gestational diabetes, and type 1 ½ or Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adults (LADA).

Type 1 diabetes is considered an autoimmune disease. It occurs when the body makes antibodies that attack the beta cells and kill them off. Once they are all gone, the body can no longer produce insulin. Once diagnosed, type 1 diabetics have to inject insulin for the rest of their life sometimes giving 3 to 7 injections daily. Type 1 accounts for 5-10% of diabetes cases and usually begins in younger children but can develop at any age.Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of the disease. It accounts for around 90-95% of diabetics. Type 2 typically starts with insulin resistance, a condition where the little insulin “key” becomes less effective at opening up the cells. When this happens the pancreas tries to compensate by making more insulin.

Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of the disease. It accounts for around 90-95% of diabetics. Type 2 typically starts with insulin resistance, a condition where the little insulin “key” becomes less effective at opening up the cells. When this happens the pancreas tries to compensate by making more insulin. Unfortunately, in type 2, this usually causes more and more insulin resistance. Eventually, the pancreas can no longer keep up with the demand and the beta cells start to lose their function. Type 2 is considered a progressive disease and tends to get worse over time, however, it can be controlled with a lifestyle change (diet and exercise), oral medication, injected medication including insulin, or any combination of these. Diet, including portion control and carb counting and exercise are always included in the diabetes prescription. Type 2 tends to happen in older adults but with the obesity problem in the United States, we are seeing younger and younger people with the disease.

Gestational diabetes is a disorder where the hormones produced in pregnancy work against insulin making it less effective. It occurs in about 9% of pregnancies. It usually resolves itself after giving birth but does put the mother and baby at increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

Type 1 ½ diabetes, or LADA, starts out like type 2 and is controlled with medication at first. At some point, sometimes after years, the beta cells are destroyed and the person is on insulin like type 1. It occurs in adulthood. Some agencies don’t recognize the term and simply refer to it as slow developing type 1.

Next time I will discuss the technology involved in treatment and care of diabetes.

This article was contributed by John White, a registered nurse and Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) at Cameron Hospital.