Penrose Physical Therapy
27
Mar 2019
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

“I Didn’t Realize My Balance Was That Bad!”

The last few weeks we’ve seen a lot of people coming into the clinic with balance issues, worried about falling. It’s a common problem that we see quite a lot. However, not a lot of people know that physical therapists can help with your balance. We like to have a bit of fun when we’re testing balance, to make it easier for people to do. We like to play ‘one-legged darts’ and do the ‘can you walk in a straight line?’ test, to find out just how steady (or how wobbly) people are on their feet. After we’ve done these little tests, everyone always says: “I didn’t realize my balance was that bad!” And it’s true! Most of us rarely realize we have a problem with our balance until it’s made obvious to us. Even though not all of us have superhuman balance like gymnasts, we need a certain level of balance. It helps us go about our daily activities without falling over and hurting ourselves. So I wanted to share the most common signs and symptoms to look out for. Especially when it comes to wobbly balance and an increased risk of falls. One of the most common ones is ‘dizziness’. Everyone has a dizzy spell now and then. But the word ‘dizziness’ may mean something different to different people. For some people dizziness might be a fleeting sensation of spinning. While for others it feels intense and lasts a long time. If you find yourself feeling as though the room… Read More
20
Mar 2019
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Did You Know That It Is NOT Normal To Shrink?

I work with clients 40+ and I often hear them say with a chuckle; “Yep, I’m shrinking and my feet are getting bigger.” Honestly, this is no laughing matter. If you shrink more than 1/2 an inch a year or more than 1.6 inches in your lifetime then you likely have had a fracture in your spine (the vertebral column) due to soft bones, or what we call osteopenia and osteoporosis. Don’t panic. It’s healed but it has healed in a way that has left you shorter. Think of soft bones/osteoporosis like butter. If you slouch or work in front of a computer every day (which is almost all of us) then that can load the vertebrae/bone and cause a “silent compression fracture”. A “silent fracture” means you do not feel it happen! You only notice the loss of height or the shrinking over time. Can we help people gain height? Yes, but not by causing the bones to grow. We have seen patients gain an inch in height by stretching the tight posture muscles. Or by giving them posture activities and yoga type exercises. It is a myth to think that shrinking comes with age. It’s also a myth to think you can’t do anything for the rounded upper back posture. You can improve that rounded upper back posture and certainly prevent it from getting worse. If you are a pre or post menopausal woman with a rounded back you certainly need to keep reading. It’s amazing… Read More
13
Mar 2019
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Balance: “Why Does My Wife Keep Falling Over?”

A gentleman called the clinic the other day with growing concerns about his wife and asked us: “Why does my wife keep falling over?” He continued to tell us that his wife, Sally, 71, has good health, but she’s been having difficulty controlling her balance lately. With each fall she loses confidence – so much that she’s scared to leave the house without him, or their daughter. Losing your balance is a scary thing. And it’s something we hear people worrying about all the time. It’s not uncommon that as we get older we begin to feel unsteady on our feet. People have told us that when they’re out doing their grocery shopping, they have to rely on the shopping cart. Other times they lean on a loved one to help them get around safely… Fear of falling spoils their confidence to leave the house alone, or even move around the house independently. It’s a worrying thing that happens. Most of the time, people don’t understand why it’s happening to them all of a sudden. So why is it that falls are one of the main causes of accidents and injuries in people aged 65+? Here’s just some of the reasons why falling can become more of an issue as we get older… Poor eyesight and difficulties with hearing properly are one of the most common changes that comes with ageing. Any issues with hearing and eyesight will make you feel unsteady. Let me explain… The inner ear has five, hair-like sensors… Read More

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