7 BEST EXERCISES FOR FACIAL GLOW

Do you envy that radiant skin and facial glow of celebrities? Sick of covering your patchy, dull skin under make up? Want that beaming face for your D-day?

Do not worry. Even you can achieve that perfect skin and radiant glow without spending heaps of money on expensive cosmetics or salons. Here are some of the best exercises to get that glow you always longed for-

1. Mouth wide open

· Open mouth wide (as much as you can) and hold this position for 10-15 seconds

· Relax and repeat 10 times

· This helps in increasing tonicity of the muscles

2. Tongue out

· Keep mouth wide open and at same time stick your tongue out

· Hold for 15 seconds and relax. Repeat 10 times

· Helps in increasing blood circulation and remove wrinkles

3. Fish pose

· Suck your cheeks in like a “fish” with pursed lips

· With pursed lips try to smile as hard as you can

· Hold this position for 10 seconds, relax and repeat this exercise 5 times

4. Pout pose

· Make a pout and try to smile

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax and repeat 5 times

5. The “O” pose

· Make an “O” and try to smile

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax and repeat it 5 times

6. Breathing exercises

· Take a deep breath from one nostril keeping the other closed

· Hold the breath for few seconds and exhale from the other nostril

· Repeat 10 times

7. Facial massage

· A proper facial massage for 10-15 minutes with all the strokes can work wonders

· It will enhance blood circulation and relax facial muscles resulting in increased glow

All these exercises will surely help you attain a beautiful and youthful skin with that glorious and radiant glow. Learn More

SLEEPING ON TUMMY IS RELAXING BUT CAN COST YOUR HEALTH!

With our tiring lifestyle and multitasking, we barely get anytime to sleep. After a long tiresome day, we just want a good night’s sleep. With all the distractions in mind we never care to give a thought to our sleeping posture. Lots of people have a habit of sleeping on their stomach. It can help you with reduction of snoring and managing sleep apnea but is most certainly not good for your back and neck. As per Mayo Clinic, sleeping on your stomach puts a strain on your back and spine because most of your weight is in the middle of your body. This makes it difficult to maintain a neutral spine position when you’re sleeping.

You tend to develop neck pain also as while sleeping on stomach you turn your head to a side causing neck twisting. With time, neck problems may increase. As far as moms-to-be are concerned, sleeping on stomach is out of question. A 2012 medical study suggests that sleeping on your left side when you’re pregnant can increase healthy blood flow and provide optimum oxygen levels for you and your baby (1).

Despite all the bad effects, some people are too reluctant to change this habit due to the blissful comfort it provides. Here are few tips that can help you:

  • Use a thin pillow. The flatter the pillow, the less angled your neck and the head will be.
  • Choose your mattress right. A slightly firmer than average bed may be very helpful.
  • Putting a pillow under pelvis can help. It will keep your back in a more neutral position, taking the pressure off your spine.
  • Stretching in the morning for 2-3 minutes will help but always start stretching session with a little bit of warm up and be very gentle with it.

The habit of lying on tummy should be discontinued as it can lead to major issues of the back and neck. Try lying on your back or your side while relaxing during the day, and then it might just become your habit during the night.

Exercising After Child-Birth

As per American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, after pregnancy, it is okay to gradually resume exercising as soon as you get a go ahead from your doctor or midwife, and as long as you feel up for it. If you had a normal uncomplicated delivery, you may start exercising in just a few days. Exercises like walking, modified push-ups and stretching can be done. If you have had a complicated delivery or a C-section, then you would require to allow proper time for your body to heal. Post healing, you can consult your doctor and start with mild exercises.

You can start doing Kegel Exercises as soon as possible. This will help you deal with incontinence. Starting physical activity after pregnancy totally depends on how active you were during your pregnancy and how smoothly your child-birth went. Do not force yourself to do exercises. Be guided by how you feel and how much energy you have. A person who had normal delivery may feel different from the woman who had a C-section. Whatever be your circumstances, keep it gentle. Hormones during pregnancy and breast-feeding can affect joints for several months after child-birth. Be careful and do not do high-impact activities soon. As soon as your strength returns, you can extend your walking routine by speed and take long walks. But whenever you feel a bit tired, sit back and relax.

With Cesarean birth, 6 Weeks’s time is needed for healing. During this while, you can start with light walks, and can start working out after consulting your gynecologist.

All this information is helpful, but, how would you know you are too early for exercises-

1. Vaginal discharge becomes redder and starts to flow more heavily

2. Bleeding restarts after you thought it had stopped

3. Pain in joints or muscles while doing any kind of exercise

Only exercising is not enough. You also have to manage your diet early after pregnancy. This can affect your mood and energy level, and it can affect your lactation as well

Be patient, do not rush on doing exercises. Always remember, a healthy body is better than a lean body. Read More

BEWARE LADIES! YOU ARE MORE PRONE TO BACK PAIN

We all have had back pain at some point in life. In some of us, it just comes and goes, and in others, it stays long enough to cause a greater disabling effect. Back pain can be caused due to old age, weak muscles, injury, bad posture and much more. It is one of the leading causes of chronic pain in Americans. However, interestingly, as per a study, women are more likely to develop chronic low back pain and sciatica as compared to males. Beware ladies! According to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention’s Summer Health Statistics for U.S. Adults in 2009, 30% of women suffered from low back pain, compared to 26% of men.

Pregnancy is one of the commonest cause of back pain in women. Several studies indicate that about 50%-70% of women experience back pain while pregnant. The increased hormones, additional weight, postural changes, and stress all contribute to the back problems. Loss of minerals from bones during pregnancy can be a major contributing cause for back pain in pregnant women. Between the age of 30 and the onset of menopause, women lose bone density more quickly than average, causing the bones to become more prone to fractures. Osteoporosis can lead to compression fracture in spine.

There are several other problems related to back that are more common in females like coccydynia, compression fracture, degenerative spondylolisthesis, fibromyalgia, piriformis syndrome, sacroiliac joint dysfunction and spinal osteoarthritis. Women are 5 times more likely to develop coccydynia which is most common after the age of 40. Degenerative spondylolisthesis usually occurs above the age of 50. Men to women ratio is 3:1. About 80% to 90% of those with fibromyalgia are women, generally between age 40 and 75. Women are 6 times more prevalent with piriformis syndrome than males. Piriformis syndrome mimic sciatica pain. Differences in pelvic structures, hormonal factors, and the impact of pregnancy are often cited to explain why women have chronic back pain.

Beware ladies! the answer to all these problems is adapting a healthy lifestyle. Proper diet and regular exercises can keep you fit and going. If you feel pain in back, do not avoid it and contact your physician. Physical therapy plays a very major role in dealing with back pain and its complications. Be careful, live pain-free. Read More

SCOLISIS IN BIKE RIDERS

Bike riding is the easiest way of transport. Also, undoubtedly, just the mere sound of a good bike’s engine gives that adrenaline rush like nothing else. But do you know how it affects your spine? Prolonged sitting on a motorbike can be very hazardous to the spine and its associated structures (1). Back problems in bike riders beat the numbers of car drivers facing similar concerns due to lack of back support in bikes. Back rest provides a comfortable sitting position. To balance the stress equilibrium mal-positioning in bike riders, the spine does some compensatory biomechanical changes and but become more prone to develop various spinal problems like increased lumbar lordosis, kyphosis, slouch postures or tilted shoulders in the process. However, the condition that has worst effects is scoliosis (2) (sideward bending/curvature of the spine).

If the scoliotic curve gets worse, the spine also rotates or twists along. Scoliosis however can be congenital (from birth) or acquired. In bike riders, the condition can become worse when the rider puts his wallet in the back pocket. Symptoms may vary from back pain, paraspinal muscle tenderness, restricted breathing, and other problems. Physical therapy works best for symptomatic relief, and long-term treatment. Exercises to strengthen back muscle and eliminate scoliotic curve include:

  • Back stretch – Sit in long-sitting position (sitting on the floor with legs stretched out completely to the front) and try to touch your feet
  • Back strengthening – There are numerous ways of strengthening the back. Best and easiest way is to lie down on your stomach with arms at the sides and lifting both the legs straight up in the air.
  • Spine extension – Lie down on your stomach with arms by the sides and palms down. Raise your head and chest up from the floor. Hold this position and relax.
  • Pelvis tilted push-ups – Be like a straight line from knees to shoulders and do push-ups.
  • Side stretch – Stand with one arm overhead and one arm at side. Bend to the side opposite to raised arm.

The “DOs” for a person with scoliosis

  • Try to maintain a good posture.
  • Use quality mattress.
  • Do stretching and strengthening exercises regularly

The “DON’Ts” for a person with scoliosis

  • Do not overstress.
  • Do not sit for long at a place. Learn More

BACK PAIN WITH WEIGHTLIFTING IN GYM

In the United States, more than $50 billion is spent each year trying to treat back pain.Major cause of this back pain is either occupational or gym injuries. Moderate weightlifting helps in developing back strength. But when you tend to overdo it going the extra mile, you may straight be heading towards straining your back or even causing disc prolapse. Hurting back may not only keep you from hitting the gym for a while but can also lead to lifelong problems.

Low back pain is one of the most common health problems in the society and causes considerable disability, work absenteeism, and use of health services. It is said to affect 50%-80% of us in our lifetime, and 15%-30% of us at any given time. During any 6-month period, 72% of adults will report lower back pain and 11% will report disabling lower back pain.

Things to remember

  • Be Reasonable – Most important and foremost advice is to be reasonable with weightlifting. Overextending or flexing your back muscles against the weight while weightlifting can result in injuries such as muscle strains/spinal injuries.
  • Choose Wisely – When starting a new weight training program, the exercise you choose should focus on support..
  • Warm-up/Cool-down – Proper warm up and cool down phase is required while gymming.
  • Gradually Step-up – Start with minimum weight and then gradually increase the weights.
  • “The Right Way” – You can always use less weight but do more repetitions.
  • Wear a Belt – Wearing belt while lifting weights is must, though there is no firm evidence that belt protects the back while weightlifting.
  • Do Smooth Movements – Do not perform weightlifting with jerky movement as it suddenly puts a lot of strain on your muscles.
  • Consult Physical Therapist/Trainer – You can always consult your physical therapist can show you how to do these exercises correctly as part of your ongoing treatment.

Back pain and weightlifting are not the opposing forces. Problems will not arise if exercises (weightlifting) are done in moderation. Weightlifting keeps you in shape and helps prevent any future injuries that may come from lack of back exercises. Be careful. Happy gymming!

TAMING THE MENOPAUSE MONSTER

Menopause is considered as a big milestone in a woman’s life. This natural process marks the end of reproductive years. Menopause usually occurs between the age of 45-55 years. But nowadays women are facing menopause at the age as early as 40 called as ‘premature menopause’ and menopause before the age of 45 is called as ‘early menopause’.

It is not very difficult to understand the early signs. You may experience hot flushes, reduced libido, night sweats, irritability, tiredness, breast tenderness, mood swings, vaginal dryness, urinary incontinence, aches and pains. This is due to hormonal fluctuations. But the major health concern that occurs with it is occurrence of osteoporosis and increased risk of heart disease. If you have a family history for heart disease, this is a major health concern.

Menopause is inevitable. It is better to be mentally prepared for it and adapt a healthy approach to manage the symptoms. You should maintain a healthy and balanced diet with decrease in caffeine and alcohol intake. Some women face irritability and mild depression. Try to overcome it as this is just a phase of life. If the symptoms persist longer than 2 weeks then talk to your doctor or psychiatrist.

Women with menopause are unsure of their health and they feel that they are losing control of their bodies. Exercising is an extremely a great way to regain some of the control. Regularly exercise at home for 30-45 minutes. This will help in improvement of general health, bone and heart health. It gives feeling of relaxation and well-being along with possibility to improve hot flushes. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, women younger than 65 should spend at least 150 minutes a week on moderate-intensity aerobic exercises like walking, dancing and cycling.

It is unpredictable when the menopause symptoms begin and stop. But learning to cope with symptoms is totally in your hand. With a positive outlook and support, you can begin the next phase of your life pretty comfortably. Read More

DEFY AGE WITH HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

You must have encountered many advertisements regarding anti-aging products and many revitalizing products that offer you to keep young and beautiful. Well these products work or not may very well be a myth, but if you want to lead a healthy longer life it is better to incorporate healthy habits, not for how the World sees you, but for your own self. Even at the age of 64, famous TV host and model from Argentina, Graciela Alfano has a flawless face and a sculpted body. When asked about her youthful appearance she said “it is the result of healthy lifestyle.”

As per a research, it has been found that most serious aging occurs at cellular level. Many of our lifestyle habits like nutrition, exercises, sleep and stress management enhance body’s ability to repair cellular damage that is inevitable as we grow older. Here are a few tips that can help you reverse the ticking clock:

  1. Eat well – A healthy balanced diet can boost your immune system and keeps you healthy. Stop eating junk food. You can totally indulge in healthy variety of food like lean meats, high nutrient fish, whole grains, fruits and veggies. Include food that are high in antioxidants and lean proteins encouraging healthy skin and shiny hair. Bid goodbye to smoking, alcohol or drugs. Drink adequate water.
  2. Exercise religiously – The American Heart and Stroke Foundation claims that it is vital to your overall health to make sure you get regular physical activity. It not only keeps you healthy but also decreases the risk of getting diabetes and heart related diseases. As per a study from National Cancer Society of National Institutes of Health, regular leisure time (i.e. 2.5 hours of moderate exercise or 1.25 hours of vigorous exercise/week for age group of 18-64 years) extends life by approximately 4.5 years. Adequate sleep is also important.
  3. Relaxation exercises – To ease out stress from life, try relaxation exercises. Psycho-neuro-endocrinology, meditation, yoga and other relaxation and deep breathing exercises reduce stress, clear mind, improve happiness, creativity and promote decision making, productivity and focus.
  4. Intimacy – Many researches have concluded that intimacy and longevity is related. A study published in British Medical Journal showed that greater level of intimacy has shown many physical and emotional benefits.
  5. Social life is important – As per Mayo clinic, solid friendship can reduce stress, increase happiness and improve self-confidence. Take time out of your busy schedules for friends and family.
  6. Have a proper sleep – Research by Psychiatrists at University of California states that people who do not get at least 6.5-7 hours of sleep each night live shorter lives.

Author of Creating Your Best Life, Caroline Adams Miller said “It is totally possible to rediscover that zest and optimism you felt when you were younger.” So, gear yourself up and be young again.

 

Old Age Problems and Physical Therapy

You cannot reverse the ticking clock. You sure don’t even need to! The right physical activities and a healthy lifestyle can still make you feel young mentally and physically. But with advancing age, problems gradually seep in and eat-up our health in a parasitic way. However, physical therapy can help you fight these problems, and you can emerge as a winner. Here are some of the health conditions that we develop in old age, and how physical therapy can be the right choice for a longer, healthier, happier and independent life:

  1. Low back ache

It has been observed that low back ache, many a times, is overtreated by surgery. However, physical therapy can successfully deal with it in most of the cases.

  1. Chronic pain

Nearly about 116 million Americans experience chronic pains, that can be treated by physical therapy effectively.

  1. Weakness and lack of strength

Researches show that physical therapy can help in improving strength in elderly people with an appropriate exercise program.

  1. Diabetes

Physical therapy can lower the risk of diabetes with exercises. In America, 1 out of 4 people aging 60 and above has diabetes. Inactivity and obesity is the main reason and physical therapy can help in getting our seniors physically active.

  1. Bladder/bowel problems/incontinence

About more than 13 million people in the US have bowel/bladder problems. Physical therapy has given excellent results in the cases of incontinence.

  1. Cardiac and higher mental conditions

Cardiovascular diseases top the charts in causes of death in America. The mantra to deal with this is “be active and keep your heart healthy”. About 40% or more people above the age of 80 tend to have memory problems. If you are active, you have lesser tendency to have memory issues as per many studies conducted over the years.

  1. Osteopathic problems

The bones that form the basic framework of our body get weaker with the passing years. More than half of American elderly population have osteoporosis. Exercises can prove very helpful in keeping the bones strong.

  1. Balance problems leading to fall

One in every 3 Americans over the age of 65 years of age have problems with balance. With physical therapy, they can not only overcome it but can also gain self-confidence and be independent.

Choose Physical Therapy, keep Moving”

INCONTINENCE – Things You Need To Do

Unable to control that urge? Here’s all you need to know…

62-y/o Tina, when came to my clinic, was a bit shy about discussing her problem. After talking to her I came to know that she is suffering from urinary incontinence. Urinary incontinence is basically any undesired leakage of urine. As per National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney disease, more than 13 million people in USA have urinary incontinence. It majorly involves improper functioning/control of the pelvic floor muscles. One in every 10 persons over the age of 65 experience this. As per Journal of American Medical Association, urinary incontinence affects up to one-quarter of American women.

Why this occurs?

  • Pregnancy and child birth
  • Pelvic fracture
  • Inflammation like cystitis
  • Surgery in vagina or rectum
  • Lack of exercise and muscle weakness
  • Confusion, dilemma, delirium, depression or anger

What can be done?

Incontinence can be treated through a number or ways starting from bladder training to physical therapy, medications to surgery and a lot more. The treatment completely depends upon the cause and based on the severity, your physician decides what’s best for you. You can also consult your physical therapist for better controlling the condition.

How Can Physical Therapy help?

Consult your PT before starting any kind of exercises

  1. Kegel exercises: It is done by squeezing the sphincter. Imagine you are urinating and try to stop urine. This increases tonicity in pelvic floor muscles resulting in better control of bladder.
  2. Stretching and strengthening of muscles: Stretching and strengthening of muscles of pelvic floor also helps in gaining tonicity.
  3. Biofeedback: It can help to make you more aware of the correct ways to use pelvic floor muscles and electrical stimulation can be given to improve awareness of muscle function.
  4. Knack maneuver: It is a voluntary contraction performed in response to a specific situation. Teach about contraction and its appropriate timing e.g. contract pelvic muscles before cough or sneeze.

Things to remember

  • Try to figure out what food irritates the bladder and try to avoid them e.g. caffeine
  • Change behaviors that make symptoms worse
  • Maintain healthy bathroom schedule
  • Maintain bowel regularity
  • Keep yourself hydrated
  • Maintain regular exercise routine and adapt an active lifestyle

If you are suffering from incontinence, do NOT worry. Urinary incontinence has excellent prognosis and people usually overcome it. In rare cases, surgical intervention may be required. Result may vary from person to person but with PT it may take 3-4 weeks to start experiencing changes in bladder functions. Learn More