Should My Shoulder Hurt After A Flu Shot?

I recently had a patient ask me where a flu shot should be administered. This may seem like an odd question since I am a Doctor of Physical Therapy and not a family physician. However, the reason she asked is because she had received another type of shot 2 weeks prior and her left shoulder had been painful since. She was due to have a flu shot and was concerned that her shoulder would be re-aggravated.

With flu season quickly approaching and because my patient asked me about this, I felt compelled to address an unfortunate situation that has occurred at least 3 times in recent years. I have cared for patients who received a flu shot only to discover shoulder pain within minutes to hours after the injection. Their pain persisted and ultimately resulted in a trip to the orthopedist and a prescription for physical therapy.

Flu shots are typically administered in the meatiest or thickest portion of the deltoid muscle of the upper arm. However, on rare occasions, the person administering...

Continue Reading...

“My daughter plays basketball and 2 of her friends just suffered ACL tears. How can I decrease the risk of an ACL tear with my daughter?”

This is a common question I get asked, especially when a teammate or the news reports on a high profile professional athlete tearing their ACL (anterior cruciate ligament in the knee).

Anytime an injury hits close to home, people become instantly aware that they could be at risk for injury too. It can be a little scary because sports are supposed to be fun. No one plays a sport and thinks they will get injured. In fact, most of the time people think that getting injured will never happen to them.

This is a myth. Injuries do happen and they can happen to you, your son, your daughter, and even your spouse. 

Let’s look at some facts to show that while ACL injuries seem like a very common occurrence, the incidence of ACL injuries is low compared to the number of athletes participating in sports.

  • According to ncaa.org, “nearly 8 million students currently participate in high school athletics in the United States.” ...
Continue Reading...

Natural Pain Relief - Feeling Better Faster

If you google “natural pain relief”, you will be inundated with a countless number of commercial products, supplements, herbs, etc. You could have your own small pharmacopeia of over-the-counter remedies. 

The question is do any of these products actually work?

Besides natural pain relief options, you have the option of prescription medications. With the rise in opioid use and abuse, many physicians are a bit more stingy with prescribing pain medication and many patients are shying away from wanting to even start them. Unfortunately, there are still too many people dependent on both prescription and over-the counter medications to mask their pain - whether it be physical, psychological, or emotional pain that grips them.

What happens when the prescription medications no longer work or the physician stops prescribing them?

Many people turn to alcohol and/or illegal substances to self-medicate. What starts out as one drink turns into another and another and another....

Continue Reading...

How Do I Get Rid Of A “Kink In My Neck”?

As I write this blog, I am reminded that September 6th is National Read A Book Day.

Have you held a book in your lap and after reading it for awhile, tried to look up but felt a “kink in your neck”?

Or, maybe your son or daughter stayed up late cramming for an exam and then complained about a “kink in their neck” the next morning?

In my own personal experience, I have awakened with a “kink in my neck”.

Why does this happen?

One of the most common reasons the “kink in the neck” occurs is because of muscle imbalances. 

What’s out of balance?

Stand up wherever you are right now.

Stand and move your chin to your chest to look down at your feet. Do you feel a pull in the back of your neck?

Imagine standing or sitting in this position for 1 hour. The muscles in the back of your neck would get nice and stretched but the muscles in the front of the neck would get nice and tight. 

When someone is reading for awhile and...

Continue Reading...

My People Are Winning!

Now that you have learned about the One Big Thing called INSURANCE that likes to dictate how you receive your physical therapy care so you can feel better, get in the way of you and your physical therapist deciding what is best for you, and refuse to pay a fair value for services delivered, I hope you can appreciate why I decided to change the game so you and and I could both WIN.

 

Throughout my 20+ years as a PT, I’ve created and developed the Feel Better Faster Formula to care for My People. I’ve already had this formula on my website and have created videos talking about it. The Feel Better Faster Formula guides you through the following steps to help you WIN!

  1. Decrease pain and tightness
  2. Improve the way you move
  3. Feel stronger and more balanced
  4. Get back to doing what you need to do
  5. Get back to doing what you want to do

 

This part is not new. What IS new is that as of May 20th, 2019 I will be moving all services online. This means you will have access to...

Continue Reading...

A Hug For Me!

Yesterday, I shared how many hours I had to work to meet the demands of insurance requirements. I loved working with my patients but the documentation on the electronic medical record for 3 hours every night was killing me.

I literally went to work at 7:15 AM and left at 5:45 PM. I ate dinner with my girls then they went to bed. From 8-11 PM, I finished my patient notes. My husband sometimes got home from 2nd shift and went to bed before I did!

When I had that intestinal cancer scare in October 2014, for 10 days I thought I was going to die at a young age and leave my kids motherless. It was scary stuff and re-prioritized my thinking. In June 2015, I resigned and opened my physical therapy practice that didn’t take insurance. Do you know that it took 6 months of being home more frequently with my girls for my littlest girl to hug me?

Now she hugs me all the time and it’s the best feeling ever.

 

Did I make the right decision to resign and start my own practice?

...

Continue Reading...

One Big Thing!

Yesterday, I shared that I became a PT because I was allergic to cats!

Even though my dream of becoming a veterinarian was crushed by swollen eyes and tomato-paste colored skin, I was excited to be a Physical Therapist. I wanted to help people get back to doing what they love. I enjoyed using my skills and teaching people how to walk again, how to run again, how to play their sport again, or how to play with their grandchildren again.

Being a physical therapist is super rewarding. I get the privilege to impact people’s lives in a very positive way that is often life-changing for them...and me too. I love my people - yes, they are patients or clients - but to me they are My People. I want to take care of My People!

Here’s the thing, though. PT school did not prepare me. They failed to teach me One Big Thing!

They failed to share that I couldn’t just treat My People and help them get better. They forgot to tell me that this One Big Thing would:

  • Limit the time My...
Continue Reading...

Dr. J’s Soap Opera

You may know me as a physical therapist but what you probably don’t know is that I got into physical therapy because I wanted to be a veterinarian!

Huh?

That’s right! I wanted to be a veterinarian since I was 5 years old. I volunteered at a veterinary clinic when I was 15 and then when I turned 16, they hired me as a “Vet Tech”. I cleaned cages, walked dogs, observed surgery, and gave diabetic injections to cats. I worked as a Vet Tech all through high school and then my freshman year in college, I developed a severe allergy to cats. I always had a “sensitivity” with watery eyes but at this point, my skin was turning red like a tomato and my eyes were swelling shut! I switched my major from Pre-Veterinary Medicine to Pre-Med and hated it!. I loved sports so I switched my major again to Sports Medicine and travelled with the sports teams as a student athletic trainer. Being on the road for almost my entire Junior year showed me that I really...

Continue Reading...

Why Your Activity Level Now Will Impact You Later

Are you among the millions of Americans who have high aspirations for how you’ll spend the extra time during your post-retirement years? Whether you plan to travel the world, pick up fly fishing, spend more time woodworking or sign up for a golf league, your physical fitness level will be a factor.

2010 study suggests that the fitness declines we typically attribute to advancing age are largely caused by living sedentary lifestyles—which are on the rise due to the prominence of desk jobs in the workplace and activity-limiting personal technologies including smart phones and voice-activated remote controls in the home. Still, this runs contrary to the widely held belief that any declines in our physical abilities are caused solely by biological aging. Do we really have control over how active we’ll be in our “golden years”?

In a word, absolutely. The study—which examined 900,000 running times of marathon and half-marathon...

Continue Reading...

Sprain or Strain? What’s the Difference?

I get this question all the time: “Dr. Jeanette, what’s the difference between a sprain and strain?”

Before I can answer that, I need to review a bit of terminology:

ligament is soft tissue that connects bone to bone. A sprain is an injury to the ligament.

tendon is soft tissue that connects muscle to bone. A strain is an injury to the muscle or to the tendon.

 

The severity of a sprain is graded as I, II, or III.

  • Grade I Sprain = an overstretched but not torn ligament- you will feel discomfort and may see mild swelling but you can usually put weight on it; Example: “I rolled my ankle.”
  • Grade II Sprain = a partial tear of the ligament – you will feel more pain than a Grade I, see swelling present with bruising due to broken blood vessels and torn tissue, and you will most likely not be able to put full weight on it; Example: “I twisted my knee.”
  • Grade III Sprain =...
Continue Reading...
1 2 3
Close

“Fill Out The Form To Get YOUR Special Report That Answers The 48 Most Frequently Asked Questions About Physical Therapy” (...It’s Currently FREE!)

Leave Your Details And Get All This Information NOW...