How To Remove Tonsil Stones Physically

Tiny tonsil stones are barely detectable and are usually expelled or swallowed in a cough. As they develop larger, they begin to induce discomfort or irritation. Please read on for some recommendations on removing tonsillitis without the need of a physician’s assistant.

Tongue Trick

It is normally possible to weaken tonsil stones without having the need to place something in your mouth. Rubbing or massaging the tongue towards the back of your throat might properly perform the trick. It is possible to also attempt holding the head back, elevating your tongue against the roof of your mouth and swallowing.

Cotton Swab

One particular preferred technique to get rid of a tonsil stone is to push a finger or moistened natural cotton swab towards the base of the stone and force it upwards to squeeze it out. The drawback to performing this is the fact that it could activate the gag reflex. As a way to avoid this, you could try first coating the tonsil with an aesthetic-throat-spray.

Carbonated drink

Gargling on a daily basis with water and vinegar solution may possibly well work to eliminate the stones eventually. You could also try having many glasses of sugar-free, fizzy beverages on a regular basis. The fizzing activity can help to ease the tonsil stones from their crypts.

Ear-curette

For those who have a manicure set, you are able to discover a tool handy for dislodging tonsil stones. An ear-curette appears to be like a little superficial scoop with an extended handle. It really is intended to remove ear wax. Its size and shape are appropriate for extracting the stones from the tonsil crypts.

Waterpik Irrigator/Pressurized Water

You could try out employing pressurized water to flush out stones from its crypts. Basically, fill a clear turkey baster with standard water, position it in the tonsil and press the bulb to launch a jet of water. Should you happen to obtain a Waterpik-irrigator, you might be somewhat much more precise. Be sure to adjust it for the smallest setting in the event you wish not to cause harm to the tonsils.

Medicine Dropper

A medicine dropper could also be employed to get rid of little tonsil stones through suction. Initially, utilize the dropper to coat the tonsils with brine. This makes the stones substantially easier to view. Next, press the bulb of the dropper and point its tip at the stone. Right after you launch the bulb, the stone ought to become drawn into the tube.

Surgery

This option is going to be only for those that have severe cases of tonsil stones. You will need surgery to remove large stones and your doctor can determine whether or not you truly need this type of option. Most often the surgical procedure doesn’t require full anesthetic and most people found that only minor discomfort followed the procedure.

It’s an easy thing to get through, but if the issue becomes chronic, then surgery is going to be the only answer moving forward. Always seek medical attention if you’re dealing with severity in the throat as you could have something far more difficult to remove than most people realize. Try natural remedies before going for anything difficult to implement, as most people can get rid of the issue with salt water rinses in the mouth

Any time you attempt any other home treatment options for removing tonsil stones, use common sense. Under no circumstances should you place tiny, sharp items into the mouth? A toothpick or needle may not just severely hurt your tonsils; it may possibly turn out to become unsafe if lodged in the throat. Never attempt any technique that may possibly harm fragile tissues.

Knowing how to remove tonsil stones is helpful, but it’s much better to prevent them from occurring in the first place. Good oral hygiene is the key. Brush your teeth when you wake up in the morning and before you go to bed. Brush or scrape your tongue to clean away bacteria. Gargle with an antiseptic mouthwash or baking soda solution daily. If you’re prone to tonsillitis, you may also wish to gently brush the surface of your tonsils with a soft toothbrush to loosen any that may be forming.Consider your safety when carrying these practices.

9 Ways to Alleviate Pain and build your Bones

September is Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month, which makes it the perfect time to load up on these beneficial foods. Fruits and vegetables are crucial to a healthy diet, but did you know certain types can reduce inflammation and strengthen bones? The following nine fruits and veggies offer a tasty way to alleviate pain and build your bones!

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FIGHT INFLAMMATION

Dark Leafy Greens: In your body, there are pro-inflammatory molecules called cytokines, which increase inflammation. Vitamin E can actually fight these molecules and reduce their amounts within your body. It can limit, for instance, the amount of damage the heart experiences from these harmful molecules, thus preventing heart disease. One of the best natural sources of Vitamin E is dark leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, broccoli, and collard greens.

Red Tomatoes: Tomatoes and other red fruits and veggies, such as red carrots, watermelon, pink grapefruit, and papaya, are delicious ways to decrease inflammation inside the body, especially for inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, colitis, and ischemia. Each is a great source of lycopene, a plant chemical that has positive health-related effects. Unlike other fruits and vegetables, cooking tomatoes actually increases the concentration of readily absorbed lycopene.

Garlic and Onions: These pungent vegetables have anti-inflammatory chemicals that can work similarly to pain medications like ibuprofen. Both work great for swollen joints, and garlic in particular can help ease injury-related and chronic back pain. Onions, shallots, leeks, and scallions contain quercetin, an anti-inflammatory antioxidant that limits the effects of inflammatory chemicals within the body. Chopping or crushing garlic or onions releases an enzyme that forms allicin, which breaks down to create sulfenic acid, an inflammation-fighting compound.

Berries: The red and blue colors found in berries come from anthocyanins, powerful chemicals that have been shown to be anti-inflammatory in nature. Raspberries in particular prevent arthritis and gout pain, and eating strawberries reduces the level of CRP, an inflammation-causing protein, in your blood.

Tart Cherries: Drinking the juice from these little nutritional powerhouses has been found to increase athletes’ performance while allowing them to reduce their use of pain medications. That’s because the chemicals in tart cherries protect against muscle damage, inflammation, and pain. 1 cup each day of tart cherry juice or 1.5 cups of the whole fruit can help alleviate some of your worst symptoms. Just make sure they’re tart, not sweet!

STRENGTHEN BONES

Dark Leafy Greens: You may have heard that calcium, a mineral that builds strong bones, comes mainly from milk products. However, did you know dark leafy greens and other vegetables also contain calcium? 1 cup of either cooked spinach or collard greens contains around 25% of your daily calcium! Add these, bok choy, or kale to a green smoothie to pack a bone-building punch!

Grapefruit: Grapefruit – both its juice and pulp – has been scientifically proven to improve bone mineral deposits and slow the rate of bone density loss. The high antioxidant levels found in grapefruits could be responsible for these bone-strengthening properties. Drink its juice or have a half for breakfast.

Broccoli: If spinach and kale don’t spark your interest, broccoli is a great alternative that is full of Vitamin K, which is linked to greater bone density and reduced bone loss. This vegetable, like its leafy green relatives, is also a great dietary source of the bone-building mineral calcium.

Oranges: Not only are oranges full of vitamin C, but the ascorbic acid found in many supermarket orange juices can aid calcium absorption. Starting the day off with a glass of OJ can have a positive impact on strengthening your bones!

Inflammation still bothering you? Feeling a little weaker in the joints and bones? Contact us today to find out how, along with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, Physical Therapy could help!

Children with the Cancer can get back in Game

Imagine for a moment that your young child has been diagnosed with leukemia. You bring them to all of their appointments with their cancer care team, holding their hand the entire time. You watch as they slowly weaken from chemotherapy sessions, but encourage them with optimistic words. You pray anxiously for the day when the oncologist tells you that your child is in remission, and they can get back to their healthy, normal life. 

Finally, that day comes. Your child is in remission, and they have been cleared for physical activity. You see their face light up with the idea of getting back on the soccer field with their friends. A week or two later, you stand saddened on the sideline as your child runs slowly and laboriously, taking several breaks to catch their breath. They watch as their friends race by them after the ball. As a parent, you feel angry, disheartened, and helpless.

For the families of children with cancer and other blood disorders, this story is one that plays out all too often. After treatment, the first thing many kids want to do is rejoin their friends in sports and Physical Education class. If they get back on the field too early, though, they run the risk of becoming seriously injured. If a child is cleared for sport, but returning right away could be dangerous, what acts as the bridge between treatment and normal physical activity?

In 2006, Professional Physical Therapy Chief Clinical Officer and founder Rob Panariello joined together with Paul Fick, Certified Athletic Trainer and Director of Business Relations at Professional, to create a program that fills this gap. Back in the Game brings recently cleared childhood cancer-survivors back up to the same level of fitness and agility as their peers by combining Physical Therapy with modified Physical Education exercises. Kids participate in running, stretching, light lifting, and coordination and agility activities to get them back to everyday physical activity much quicker than they would without guidance.

The Back in the Game program also has a positive effect on overall confidence. “These kids are so deconditioned from treatment,” said Paul Fick, “that everything changes when they participate in Back in the Game. They have neurological and physical recovery, yes, but one of the biggest changes we see is the increase in confidence – not only in them, but in their parents as well.”

Families also benefit from Back in the Game. Siblings, who often fall off the radar during the treatment journey, participate in bonding activities with their brother or sister at the end of each class, and parents witness and celebrate their son or daughter’s amazing resiliency and triumphs.

“[My son] has benefited from this program in so many more ways than I ever imagined. The trainers were so helpful and caring.  They gave him the confidence and drive to be the best he can be. He came out of every session with a smile and was so proud of what he accomplished,” said Cindy Polo, the mother of a young brain-cancer survivor who took part in this spring’s session of Back in the Game. “As a parent there is nothing better than to see your child so happy and proud after going through all he has. This experience has been the most inspirational thing. It has touched our family in ways you can’t imagine. Our only regret is that we didn’t start this sooner.”

Perhaps one of the greatest underlying purposes of Back in the Game is the reinstatement of a hope that sometimes goes missing during treatment. It is with that hope that a family comes together again and a child boldly overcomes the obstacles in his path to live out the life he or she has always dreamt of.

When Aches and Pains are Cause for Action

Aches and pains happen to everyone, and occur during sport, at home or at work. Whether it’s a pain in your shoulder when you reach to grab something falling off a shelf, tightness in your back when your bat makes contact with the ball, or a quick twist of your ankle during a run, our daily activities may put us at risk for injury.

These injuries are soft tissue injuries and are usually the result of a sudden, unexpected or uncontrolled movement like stepping awkwardly or rolling your ankle.

An injury is not always cause for alarm. So, when is it okay to just shake it off?

After your injury, one of the first things you can do is apply the RICE formula and wait a few days before determining if you are ready to resume your regular routine.

The RICE formula is:

  • Rest: Take time to rest, and avoid activities that may cause pain
  • Ice: Wrap ice cubes or a frozen item in a towel, and apply to the affected area
  • Compression: Apply a bandage that covers the whole joint; do not restrict circulation, as that will cause more pain
  • Elevation: When possible, raise the injured limb above your heart to reduce swelling, and support it with cushions or a sling when you are not active

You may be asking yourself, “When do I seek professional help from an Orthopedist or Physical Therapist?” If you experience a pop or crack sound, accompanied with pain at the time of your injury you should seek immediate attention.

If your symptoms do not improve within 24-48 hours, it is suggested you seek medical attention immediately – especially if you experience any of the following, as it may be a sign of tissue damage:

  • The intensity and progression of the pain continues to increase
  • Swelling is not subsiding
  • Bruising is getting worse
  • You are unable to put weight on, or use, the injured area
  • The area surrounding the injury is also painful
  • You experience numbness, and/or ‘pins and needles’ sensation

When in doubt, get help! Getting to know your body and when to go to the doctor can help you get back to your normal activity sooner. Consulting with a Physical Therapist or an Orthopedist will provide you with an appropriate diagnosis along with hands-on-treatment and exercises that can promote a speedy recovery.

Laser plus Physical Therapy and Healing Process

Laser Therapy has been used for almost 60 years around the world to treat a variety of conditions, but it wasn’t until 2002 that the FDA approved its use in the U.S. The FDA ruling came after a study showed that laser treatment alleviated serious Carpal Tunnel pain, and now Laser Therapy is being used to treat everything from sports related injuries and bone fractures to joint conditions and muscle injuries. 

Since 2002, we’ve seen Laser Therapy effectively treat the injuries of your next-door neighbor and professional athletes alike. The bottom line: when paired with Physical Therapy, Laser Therapy is a breakthrough treatment that can speed up healing and return patients to the activities they need (and often love) to do.

 

So, how does Laser work? Our cells have the ability to absorb photons emitted by Laser Therapy and convert them to usable energy. The added energy aids in pain relief and healing at a rate a patient wouldn’t otherwise experience.

 

Laser Therapy is performed by a Physical Therapist, and is a painless process that takes between five and ten minutes. To achieve the best results, expect to try six to twelve sessions of the therapy. If you have any other questions about Laser Therapy, including how to get started, just ask your Physical Therapist. The staff at Professional Physical Therapy is eager to answer any of your therapy questions.

Children’s Backpack Safety

As our children are settling in to their classrooms – the hustle and bustle of homework, school sports, and extracurricular activities also begins. The last thing parents and their children need to worry about are injuries, soreness, and back pain that can result from carrying heavy backpacks every day. While we can’t tell our teachers not to give our children homework, we can better protect our children and utilize best practices for packing and using backpacks.

Choosing a Backpack:

1. Pick a lightweight pack with a padded back. (i.e. the smaller the student, the smaller the backpack)

2. A pack should have two wide padded shoulder straps, multiple compartments, and a waist belt.

3. While packs on wheels may be good options, they are not easy to roll through snow, grass and are difficult to pull up stairs.

 

Backpack Usage Tips:

1. Limit the load to less than 15% of student’s body weight (do not place lunch bags or unnecessary items (computers, cell phones, pencil boxes or books in bag)

2. Use all compartments and place heaviest books/items closer to the spine

3. Use both shoulder straps when carrying backpack and tighten them so that the pack rests in the middle of the back no more than 4 inches below waist line

4. Wear waist belt if available to distribute weight evenly.

 

The Benefits of Exercise You Didn’t know Existed

There is no denying that exercise provides many health benefits to people of all ages.  In a recent article from The New York Times, exercise was referred to as a “wonder drug”, and reviewed how physical activity can positively affect many different medical conditions.  The article examined studies, as well as evidence-based data, to support the noted benefits.

Conditions discussed in the article include:  musculoskeletal diseases such as arthritis and back pain, cardiac disease, high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, pulmonary disease, depression, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and fatigue, as well as treatment of elderly patients.  In some conditions and circumstances, exercise was also found to be superior over drugs in impacting overall health and decreasing mortality.  The recommended amount of exercise is 150 minutes per week (30 minutes per day for five days), and this may be accomplished simply by walking briskly.

In over 20 years of practice, my first line of treatment for patients with all musculoskeletal conditions was recommending a pain-free exercise program, tailored to each patient.  For example, in a patient with knee arthritis, where running may exacerbate the problem, I would recommend a low impact activity such as swimming, cycling or yoga.  For specific exercise programs, I would refer patients to physical therapists, who are most qualified to supervise and implement these programs.  Licensed physical therapists utilize their medical knowledge and clinical experience to create a comprehensive, individualized rehabilitation program for each patient.

Owen Lennon PT, DPT, OCS, at Professional Physical Therapy, agrees with Dr. Levy stating, “As a physical therapist, it is very rewarding to see patients realize the benefits of exercise. Many patients are becoming more aware of the rising cost of prescription drugs and potential side-effects, and are looking for alternatives. When patients successfully complete a course of care with a Physical Therapist, and then change their lifestyles to include regular exercise, they are taking a major step forward in their overall health. The New York Times article describing exercise as a “wonder drug” is very accurate. Unfortunately, it may be one of the most under-utilized “treatment modalities”. Through our daily interactions in the clinic, we are working to change that.”

So the next time you’re handed a prescription for pharmaceuticals, consider consulting with a healthcare professional to develop a customized fitness program, specific to your condition, that will help maximize outcomes.

How to Keep Your Feet Firmly Planted on the Ground

Did you know that every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the Emergency Room for a fall-related injury? Fall Prevention Awareness Week is quickly approaching in September, and to celebrate, Professional Physical Therapy is supplying you with tips on how to protect yourself from becoming one of these ER casualties!

Each year, one out of every three adults, 65 years old or older, falls, and 83% of falls cause injury.  An even more shocking 49% of falls occur at home.

There are many factors that can contribute to falls, such as normal changes due to aging, visual or vestibular changes, lower extremity muscle weakness, gait abnormalities, certain medications, and your external environment.

Here’s what you can do to reduce your risk of falling:

  • Review your medications and their side effects with your Primary Care Physician.
  • Get yearly vision check-ups.
  • Eliminate external hazards in your home (e.g., remove small throw rugs, remove clutter, keep common items in cabinets within reach, wear appropriate footwear, and make sure there is proper lighting throughout your home).
  • Lastly and most importantly, exercise regularly to keep your muscles strong! Here are a few exercises you can perform at home, twice a day (3 sets of 10 repetitions each) to keep strengthening your muscles:
  • Sit to stand
  • Heel raises
  • Knee kick outs
  • Marching
  • Toe raises
  • Single leg balance

Be sure to perform these exercises in a safe, familiar environment!  If you have any questions or think you may be at risk for falling, you can schedule a complimentary assessment with one of our licensed Physical Therapists.

Prehab – Can You Recover After Surgery

Prehabilitation — or Prehab — in a clinical setting is typically for patients who are heading for surgery. The main goals of Prehab are to preform some prep work to get a joint moving and to get swelling under control before having  surgery.

Some of the many benefits of Prehab include:

  1. Education — a Physical Therapist knows what to expect before, during, and after surgery, which may take away some of a patient’s uncertainty and fear prior to surgery.
  2. It’s a great opportunity to develop trust between Physical Therapist and patient.
  3. Training the muscles you will use prior to your rehab helps develop a memory for the activity, because your physiology has something called “muscle memory.” Post surgery, your body will remember the activity, and this may lessen the time of your recovery.
  4. Working on the restoration of normal range of motion and strengthening prior to your surgery are vital. Patients typically lose one or both of these post surgery, so if you can begin with a fully functional joint, your recovery time may also improve.

Move off your seat and get back on your feet

These 5 tips will help ease the transition from your couch to back in motion.

  1. Dress the part. Wearing comfortable shoes or sneakers when heading outdoors will not only make your feet happier, but you’ll be more likely to turn that 5 minute stroll into a 20 minute brisk walk.  Making this simple move might even lead to taking that parking space that’s a little further from the store, and getting a few extra steps in.
  2. Start Slowly. It’s been a long winter!  Attempting to get right back to your pre-winter activities could be challenging, if not dangerous.

Be sure to warm up:

  • Static and active stretching for your full body is very important, especially when preparing for full body exercises, or activities that require you to do complicated or multi-directional movements, such as strength training, running, swimming, or yoga.

Then build your endurance:

  • Balance your schedule with harder activity days, lower activity days, and days of rest. If you used to run five miles a day, plan on starting with one mile at first and gradually build it back up.
  1. Embrace the Outdoors. You don’t need to have a gym membership to stay active.  Walking, hiking, sightseeing, golfing, swimming, fishing, gardening, biking, jogging, tennis, and volleyball are all perfect activities to get you back in motion.  Add to that the convenience of taking your pets and your children with you, and you’ve got a winning combination!
  2. Stay hydrated. Before doing any kind of exercise, always have your bottle of water with you.  Drinking water replaces the body fluid lost through sweating.  Water also keeps your blood pressure from rising, which helps regulate body temperature.  If you’re working out on a particularly hot and humid day, it’s even more critical to hydrate.  According to the American Council on Exercise, every time you lose a liter of fluid through sweat, your heart rate increases by eight beats per minute.
  3. Vitamin D is Key. The sun is a primary source of Vitamin D, which is needed for bone growth and remodeling, osteoporosis prevention, cell growth, neuromuscular and immune function, and inflammation reduction. Many people are Vitamin D deficient don’t even know it.  Walking or working out outdoors will not only help keep you fit and healthy, but will boost your Vitamin D levels.