Vital Care PT January 2018




(623) 544-0300


As a new year begins, many people make resolutions to lose weight, eat healthier, or rid themselves of bad habits. I don’t particularly make New Year’s resolutions. However, I am a proponent of goal setting. The beginning of a new year is an ideal time to set goals, because you feel refreshed. Many people like to set ambitious, lofty goals because they can yield big results. Personally, I prefer realistic, short-term goals throughout the year. Short-term goals are easier to track and complete, and you experience a little bit of satisfaction each time you reach one. With that in mind, I encourage you to do the same. If you want to ensure your success, I suggest writing down your goal. If your goal is not written down, it doesn’t exist. Vital Care Patients ENTER TO WIN Find the misspelled word in this newsletter and call (623) 544-0300 for your chance to win a $10 gift card! CALL 623-544-0300

“If your goal is not written down, it doesn’t exist.”

When it comes to patient wellness, goal setting is a little different. After an initial evaluation with a patient, I figure out what’s going on within their body and determine the appropriate course of treatment. After I explain to my patient what is wrong and what needs to happen to fix the issue, we sit down together to create functional goals for their treatment plan. Functional goals are realistic, measurable, attainable, and specific. A patient can’t just say, “I want to decrease pain.” That goal is too general. Instead, their goal should sound like, “I want to reduce pain in this specific area of my body, during a specific activity, in this certain amount of time.” For example, a good physical therapy goal would look like this: “Able to tolerate 20 minutes of walking without low back pain within 8 weeks,” or, “Able to perform sit-to-stand transfer from an armless chair without hip pain or difficulty within 4 weeks.” After our goals are set, we devise a treatment plan. For example, if a patient’s goal is to be able to get out of a chair with ease and stand without pain, we prescribe specific exercises to accomplish that goal. This includes exercises at the clinic as well as ones that can be performed at home.

If we see that a patient is not progressing toward attaining a goal, we reassess and change the plan of care as needed. Sometimes the patient just needs more time, and we adjust the goal accordingly. However, we’re pretty accurate at estimating the length of time treatment takes, so almost every patient reaches their goal within the anticipated time frame. We never let a patient set an unrealistic goal. We want the end result to be success, not disappointment. One of the most important aspects of attaining a physical therapy goal is following through with the at-home exercise program. If you don’t do your exercises at home, you won’t get better as quickly, or at all. We can’t fix everything in two one-hour, in-office sessions per week, so patients must assume some responsibility outside the clinic.

Good luck on your goals this year. Happy New Year! We will see you soon!

–Andrea McWhorter

Contest for past and present Vital Care PT patients only. | 1

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I s Y our L ifestyle R etireme WHY RIGHTSIZING MAKES FOR B

Clear Out Unneeded Goods If you’ve been in the same home for years or decades, you probably have more stuff than you need. Start by discarding anything that’s broken, damaged, or simply not getting any use. You should also make sure you’re not acting as a storage unit for friends or family members. If they don’t have the space for something, it shouldn’t be your job to hang on to it. Eliminating clutter will free up your space and allow you to treasure what you have. Move Into a House You Can Fill Once all of your children have left the nest, you’ll often find that you don’t need as many rooms. Selling your home and moving into one that isn’t half-empty will generate some extra cash and help you to live more efficiently. As an added bonus, you’ll often find that a cozier home increases happiness. The less time you have to spend on home maintenance, the more you can devote to the activities you love. Change Your Mindset Too often, we suffer from the urge to “keep up with the Joneses.” If our

As you approach retirement, it’s important to make sure your lifestyle is tailored to fit the end of your working life. This concept, known as “rightsizing,” can make your savings last longer, which provides you with the freedom to enjoy your later years. Kathy Gottberg, author of “Rightsizing: A Smart Living 365 Guide to Reinventing Retirement,” defines the concept as “conscious choices for a better lifestyle that more closely fits your new needs in retirement.” The earlier you can begin rightsizing, the more prepared you’ll be for the days when you no longer have an income from work. For most of us, what really matters when we retire is spending time with loved ones and having memorable experiences. Nobody’s greatest regret is not having enough stuff. With that in mind, here are a few tips that will prepare you for a fruitful and fulfilling retirement.

neighbor buys something, we want it too. But to really rightsize, you should resist the urge to meet other people’s standards.

S udoku

W ord on the S treet EILEEN AND MIKEL’S STORIES “When I arrived for my PT, I could not sit for long periods of time. My backside was stiff and sore, and I could not bend over very far. I would wake up with pain in my lower back and bottom side. Thanks to Andrea and Abby giving me the exercises to do at home — plus the exercises done at PT — I can now function 90 percent better in everyday life. They were patient and took the time to answer any questions. It was so very appreciated. Thanks!” –Eileen B. “All of your staff helped me after hip surgery. I became stronger and was able to return to work. Everyone was friendly and helpful in my rehabilitation. Thanks to all of you, and God bless your healing hands.” –Mikel B.

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Retirement should help you make the most of your life, not anyone else’s. Before you make a purchase, especially a large one, ask yourself what’s motivating your decision. If it’s not going to make your life better, leave it on the shelf.

PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR ANKLE IMPINGEMENT A twisted ankle is one of the most common injuries. Most times, twisted ankles can be treated with ice baths, rest, and elevation. But when you experience ankle impingement, when soft or bony tissues are compressed within the ankle joint, you need to see a physical therapist for treatment. Ankle impingement often happens when the foot is pointed downward sharply, and it typically affects people who perform repetitive tasks that involve squatting or stair climbing, as well as many athletes. Ankle impingement can be categorized into two types, anterior and posterior ankle impingement. Anterior ankle impingement involves pain in the front of your ankel. Inflammation and swelling occur as a result of repetitive stress at end-range position of the ankle, such as when you jump, squat, or descend stairs. Anterior ankle impingement can lead to bone spurs (bony overgrowths) in the joint if left untreated. Posterior ankle impingement is indicated by pain in the back of your ankle during activities that involve pointing your toes. The pain is caused by compression of soft or bony tissue between the shin bone and the heel bone. Large amounts of force occasionally may cause small pieces to break off the ankle bone, which can become compressed when you move your foot or toes downward, toward the sole of the foot. When you see a physical therapist for ankle impingement, they will perform an examination to evaluate your ankle strength, range of motion, sensation, and structural stability as well as your balance. Your physical therapist will also gently move your ankle to see if you are suffering from anterior or posterior impingement. Once you’ve been diagnosed, your physical therapist will design a specialized treatment plan and work with you to achieve your functional goals. This may include pain management through ice massage or electrical stimulation, range of motion exercises, muscle-strengthening exercises, balance exercises, and functional training. If you have been experiencing swelling and pain in your ankle, give Vital Care Physical Therapy a call at 623-544-0300 for an evaluation and treatment.

L eftover T urkey R amen


• 1 leftover turkey carcass • 6 scallions, divided • 8 slices ginger • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms • 16 cups water

• 4 eggs • 4 ounces bacon • 4 portions fresh, not instant, ramen noodles • 2 cups leftover turkey, shredded


1. Remove most of the meat from the turkey carcass, shred, and set aside. Put carcass in a large stockpot, along with 3 scallions, ginger, mushrooms, and water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 3 hours. 2. Place eggs in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then immediately remove pot from heat and let sit for 4 minutes. Transfer eggs to an ice bath to cool. 3. Cook bacon until crisp. Drain, chop, and set aside. Chop remaining scallions. 4. Once the broth is done simmering, prepare the fresh noodles according to package directions. Divide noodles among 4 bowls and cover with broth. Add shredded turkey, chopped scallions, chopped bacon, and an egg to each bowl. Recipe inspired by | 3


(623) 544-0300 Fax: (623) 544-0239

14545 W. Grand Ave. #108 Surprise, AZ 85374

THIS ISSUE I nside Why I Prefer Goals to Resolutions PAGE 1 Are You Ready for Retirement? PAGE 2 The Dangers of Ankle Impingement Recipe of the Month PAGE 3

Adventure Is Waiting PAGE 4


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There will never be a better time to take the trip you’ve dreamed of for years. Adventure is out there; don’t keep it waiting any longer.

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