Stretch PT & Total Wellness - April 2018

513-874-8800 Painless News

April 2018


While the Stretch Physical Therapy clinic and the wonderful patients we serve are two of the most important parts of my life, it often feels like everything revolves around my 4-year-old grandson, Hollis. As our first and only grandchild (so far), my husband and I adore him, and he animates our days with plenty of excitement. Hollis lives about 45 minutes away, but when he’s with his dad, they always make time to come down and spend the evening with us, usually during the weekends. He’s the most personable little guy you’d ever have the pleasure of meeting. When you look into his eyes, there’s something about them that makes you feel like he’s an old soul, a fact reflected in every aspect of his personality. He’s so eager to please and spend time with those he loves, jumping headlong into whatever task you’re teaming up on.

he’s particularly fond of “helping” me cook. But no matter what he’s doing, whether he’s teasing our wheaten terrier in the backyard or just hanging out, he’s an absolute joy to have around the house. Hollis especially loves to take baths, always eager to try out one of my scented bath bombs. In fact, he loves the bombs so much that he gave them as gifts last Christmas. One day, a couple weeks before the holiday, Hollis and I were relaxing at the house when I realized I needed to go out and run a few errands. So, I told him we could get his Christmas shopping done on the trip. First, I took the little sugarholic to Esther Price, where he personally picked out a gift for each member of his family, from his Grandma Ellie to his dad and stepmom. He was eager to get everyone a candy that they specifically would like, so a lot of thought went into every selection. Then, of course, at his insistence, we went to Bed Bath & Beyond and picked out bath bombs for everybody. It may sound like I’m spoiling the little guy — but hey, I’m his grandmother and I’m allowed to! If you meet him, you’ll understand how difficult it is not to shower him with gifts and affection; he’s just such a charming soul. I feel lucky for every minute he spends with us. “... it often feels like everything revolves around my 4-year-old grandson, Hollis. As our first and only grandchild (so far), my husband and I adore him ...”

He’s game for anything. We’ll

often take a trip down to the indoor

playground at Jump & Jack’s. It’s a blast to just watch him go wild clambering over

the obstacle course. Back at home, he’ll sit on my lap, and we’ll watch YouTube videos of crazy Play- Doh demonstrations or clips of Mickey Mouse. Sometimes, he’ll join me at the stove;

Hollis and me

–Kim Nartker



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While most physical therapists will not recommend surgery unless there is clearly no other avenue for a patient’s recovery, there is certainly a wide array of circumstances that warrant going under the knife. Following surgery, most patients should undergo a bout of rehabilitative physical therapy to steer the postoperative recovery process in a positive direction. However, recent research indicates that although rehabilitation is definitely important, it may not actually be enough to get the most out of a treatment. In addition to postoperative rehabilitation programs, many modern health care providers have begun recommending 4–8 weeks of exercise- based physical therapy before undergoing surgery. This pre-emptive therapy is sometimes called prehabilitation, and it can offer a host of benefits for surgical patients. These advantages include faster recovery times, fewer days spent in the hospital, lower incidence rates of surgical

complications, less pain, higher activity levels, and general improved fitness following surgery. All these benefits converge to bring about a happier, healthier patient who is more likely to return to doing what they love without worry. Though the research on prehabilitation is steadily expanding, displaying benefits for all kinds of conditions, the current data shows that prehabilitation works best for the following procedures:

train for a marathon. Considering the stress most surgeries put on the body, it only makes sense to adequately prepare. However, it’s important that any prehabilitative measures are carefully guided by a professional. The exercises must be rigorous enough to strengthen and prepare the patient before surgery, but it’s vital they don’t further injure or worsen the patient’s condition. If a therapist is able to maintain this delicate balance, they can motivate and guide their patient toward positive outcomes for years to come.

Joint replacement

Correction of spinal disorders, particularly stenosis

Heart surgery


In essence, prehabilitative patients are training for their surgery the same way a runner might

Te s t imo n i a l


“I have had a long history of back pain, starting frommy stint in the Army, which was almost 10 years ago. Since then, I’ve had flare-ups every few years. The last flare- up started about two years ago. The doctors and other physical therapists I saw did not help much. Coming to Stretch has been a totally different experience. The combination of laser and physical therapy here has been totally effective. My pain was reduced, and I now have a fluidity of movement that I have not felt in years. The laser is very relaxing and seems to help initiate the physical therapy session with great results.” –Ethan Boger 2

What Sciatica Sufferers Need to Know Patients’4Most BurningQuestions Answered

Q: Which exercises should I do? A: The exercises that will provide the most relief for your sciatica depend on the particular cause of your condition, whether it’s a herniated disc, stenosis, arthritis, or a pelvic or SI-joint problem. People with a herniated disc typically have pain when bending forward, twisting, coughing, or sneezing. Stenosis or arthritis usually causes pain in those 50 years or older when they’re standing or walking. And SI-joint or pelvic issues cause pain in the thigh that worsens after sitting for long periods of time. Q: How do I maximize my chances of eliminating pain? A: The single best way to fix your sciatica for good is to work alongside an experienced physical therapist who understands the complex interactions in your body. The experts at Stretch Physical Therapy can help you live a life free from the

If you suffer from constant sciatic pain radiating down one side of your buttock or leg, it can be difficult to think about anything else. That’s one reason we encourage patients suffering from sciatica to seek treatment as soon as possible. Address the issue before it worsens, so you may return to the things you love to do. You probably have questions about the treatment process, and we’ve got answers! Q: How long will this take to go away? A: In general, it takes 4–8 weeks to eliminate sciatic pain and return movement and strength to normal levels. But it may take another 1–4 months of treatment to get back to all the activities you want to do. This recovery time depends on several factors, including overall health, diet, rest, stress levels, and consistent adherence to your treatment plan. Luckily, most patients feel marked improvements in their condition within only 2–3 visits. Even better — once a patient makes it through all three phases of treatment and they’ve returned to their favorite activities, it’s unlikely the pain will ever return. Q: Do I need any special equipment? A: At Stretch Physical Therapy, we take a minimalist approach. There’s no need for big, fancy, or expensive equipment in your home. Most of your prescribed exercises can be done with a ball, exercise bands, and a bit of space.

pain of sciatica, injections, medications, and surgery. Give us a call to schedule a free consultation, and take the first step toward uprooting your pain!

Don’t resort to surgery at the first recommendation. Get a second opinion and learn how to heal naturally without medications and long recovery times. Call Stretch Physical Therapy at 513-874-8800 and eliminate your back pain for good!


Mint Pea Soup


With the beautiful spring weather, peas will soon be ripe enough to slip out of their pods. In honor of the season, this recipe pairs peas and pearl onions with mint to make a refreshing soup.


• • • • •

3 pearl onions, diced 3 tablespoons olive oil 6 cups fresh or frozen peas 5 cups vegetable stock

• • • •

1 tablespoon agave nectar

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt to taste

Pistachios for garnish

3/4 cup freshmint, plus more for garnish


1. Place pot on stove over medium heat. Add olive oil. Add onions and cook until translucent. 2. Add peas and stock. Cook until peas are just tender and still bright green. Remove from stove and allow mixture to cool for 5 minutes. 3. Put the mixture in a blender. As you blend, add mint, agave, lemon juice, and salt. 4. Once blended, pour into a bowl, garnish with mint and pistachios, and serve! This soup can be served hot or chilled depending on the weather and your preference. 513-874-8800


Phone: 513-874-8800 Monday–Thursday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.


4851WunnenbergWay West Chester, Ohio 45069


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KimNartker’s Sugarholic Grandson

How Physical Therapy Can PrepareYou for Surgery

AWord FromOne of Our Patients

Answering Sciatica Sufferers’Most Burning Questions

Spring Greens Soup

HaveYouTriedThis Natural Healing Remedy?

Earthing: Sleep Like You’re on Vacation

Have you ever fallen asleep on the beach after swimming in the ocean? If you have, you know it’s the most restful and relaxing sleep imaginable. You might have thought it was just the result of warm sunlight and vacation vibes, but research suggests you may have been experiencing the effects of a practice called “earthing.” Earthing, sometimes referred to as “grounding,” helps bring our bodies into a natural balance. The theory states that our bodies naturally develop a positive charge. As leading nutritionist Dr. John Briffa explains, “During the normal processes of metabolism, the body generates what are called ‘reactive oxygen species,’ which are commonly referred to as ‘free radicals’ ... Free radicals lack sparks of energy known as ‘electrons.’”When a molecule lacks electrons, it gives off a positive charge. An unbalanced positive charge contributes to inflammation, which can then cause many chronic diseases, including heart disease. You should balance

your natural positive charge with a negative charge. How can you safely expose yourself to a negative charge? Just let your skin touch the earth. Earth gives off a mild electric charge, with plenty of electrons to balance out our overabundance of free radicals. There has yet to be a large-scale scientific study about the benefits of earthing, but current research is promising. One study published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found earthing helps reduce blood viscosity, which is a major factor in cardiovascular disease. Another study in the Journal of Inflammation Research showed that earthing might speed up healing. Firsthand accounts from individuals who practice earthing often report lower stress levels, increased energy, and better sleep. Many people who practice earthing make it a point to walk outside barefoot on grass, soil, or sand at least once a day. You have to be careful where you

walk, as you don’t want to get cut on sharp rocks or broken glass. An alternative to walking barefoot is to use an earthing pad, which can imitate the negative charge of our planet inside your home. Earthing is quickly gaining a following in the health community. If you are looking for a natural way to improve your overall health and sleep better, why not try taking a walk? Just remember to leave your shoes behind.


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