Keeping you current on all things LBPT
I ’ve been passionate about being a physical therapist for a long time. That might seem like an obvious thing for a practicing physical therapist to say, but there’s a reason behind it. I really started to discover my passion for PT while volunteering in a hospital setting. I loved working with patients and helping them. There was an exhilarating challenge to it. But it was difficult to dedicate the time I wanted to because I was expected to see patients every half hour and was unable to devote the amount of time my patients deserved. I loved the work, but I needed to be in a place where I could really focus on my duties and be a resource patients could rely on. I made the choice to open my own clinic because I wanted to spend at least one hour with each patient. That was my big thing. I desired to practice in my own way. Nine years later, that drive still propels me. Of course, the way I work and how I run the practice has changed quite a bit over those nine years. One thing that motivates me more today is collaborating with everyone who works at the clinic. Our team members are all self-motivated and need to be heard. As the practice grows, I’ve thought more about the type of clinic where I would have loved to work when I started practicing. That’s what I want Lake Burien to be, and collaboration is a big part of that. As a clinician, there’s something rewarding about not just offering PT but being able to guide a patient through the entire healing process. When a new patient comes to me, I get to go on a journey with them. Yes, I share my knowledge of biomechanics and the musculoskeletal structure. But more than that, I get to show patients how to treat their pain independently and find a greater understanding of why they are experiencing it. As I’ve mentioned in the past, it’s a very educational, if not transcendent, experience.
how pain works, I’ve found that the word very much applies. Since we work with patients who are in severe pain, they are often mentally in a very dark place. They battle doubt, worry, anxiety, and depression. When you can no longer do what you love because of pain — and you haven’t immediately found the cause — that can have a huge effect on your mental well-being. I wanted to change our patients’ perspectives, find answers, and help them climb out of these dark places. I spoke to a patient recently who came in with severe leg pain. This patient had been a contra dancer and loved to hike. But with such intense leg pain, he could no longer do these things. The discomfort had taken him away from just about everything he loved to do for a full year. I worked with this patient and really got down to the “why” of his pain. After a handful of visits to the clinic, things started to change. After only a few months, he was able to get back to what he loved to do. He went hiking through the Enchantments and even started attending dance conventions. In fact, this past summer, this patient attended a convention that kept him on his feet for 30 hours over a weekend. All the while, his leg pain was gone. When people face pain, all too often, the pain impacts many facets of their life. It limits their ability to participate in social engagements, physical pursuits, and sometimes their work. Their mental health suffers and we make sure to take that into account when they are treated at LBPT.
I can say that, through our approach, we’ve done just what we set out to do. And at the end of the day, that is why I love being a physical therapist.
P.S. My birthday is on Thursday, Feb. 28! To celebrate, we’re having cake and free screens! Be sure to check out all the details in this month’s insert!
–Dr. Orit Hickman
I’m well aware “transcendent” isn’t a word often associated with physical therapy, but as I’ve practiced PT and learned more about
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Therapy Lights DO THEY WORK OR ARE THEY ALL HYPE?
e n e f i T o u c h No matter your age or athletic ability, you can benefit from yoga. For those of you who don’t know, yoga is a form of meditation and a methodical exercise practice that benefits the body, mind, and spirit. There are many variations of this ancient practice, including forms that emphasize physical well-being and others that focus more on meditation and relaxation. At Lake Burien Physical Therapy, we practice rehabilitation yoga. It’s a kind that can benefit anyone recovering from surgery or injury. It’s also well-suited for those who have had joint replacements and need a form of exercise to acclimate or improve their range of motion. Plus, it’s simple enough that anyone can pick it up easily. Yoga is all about getting in touch with your body. Some exercises focus on breathing and can attune your senses to your body and mind. One Harvard Medical School study found that people who practice yoga The winter months can be dreary for folks who live in northern regions. The days are shorter and the sky is often obscured by clouds. This bleak weather can lead to seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. Depression, moodiness, and lower energy typically affect people with SAD more during the fall and winter months. The disorder has several different causes, but a primary one is a lack of sunlight, which can have an impact on your body’s internal clock. The winter climate can also reduce your serotonin levels, which influence your mood. Low serotonin can bring about feelings of depression. To address this problem, manufacturers developed light therapy devices. Therapy lights, or “happy lights,” are bright lamps that can sit on your desk or end table. They simulate natural sunlight and are marketed as mood boosters that treat symptoms of SAD. But do these therapy lights actually work or are they just placebos? The answer is both . There are a lot of therapy lights on the market, but they’re not all equally effective. The difference is their output. While most lights attempt to simulate sunlight, some devices have weaker output, which means your body and brain won’t respond the same way they do when in natural sunlight.
For instance, some lights are marketed as having “5,000 lux” or “10,000 lux.” There is a big difference between the two. Normal daylight (not direct sunlight), has the equivalent of 10,000–25,000 lux. Direct sunlight can have anywhere from 30,000–100,000 lux. Average office lighting puts out less than 500 lux. In order to be effective, you need a lamp with at least 10,000 lux. After about 30–45 minutes of use, you should notice a boost in mood and energy. While therapy lights are safe and come with few side effects, they are not suited for extended use. Many lights come with a warning not to use them for more than an hour at a time. Using them for longer than an hour can cause eye strain, headaches, and irritability. Therapy lights are not a cure-all. They can help, but they’re a short-term solution. If you feel the effects of SAD or experience depression, consult with a health professional to determine what solution is right for you.
“were more aware of their bodies” than those who didn’t. When you’re aware, you’re in tune, and you feel better.
Other benefits include improved flexibility and balance. These become more important as we age or deal with injury. Many yoga stretches and exercises help keep joints strong and can reduce aches, pains, and inflammation. The benefits of yoga are not just physical. The practice can also help relax the mind. It makes use of many breathing exercises that help reduce anxiety and stress. A calmer state of mind reduces blood pressure and allows you to get a more restful night’s sleep. That way, you wake up feeling great and ready to take on the day. With all these potential benefits, now is the time to get out there and start exploring what yoga can do for you. To learn more about our ongoing gentle yoga classes, visit LakeBurienPT.com/wellness/yoga. Attending a class would be a great way to prepare for the coming spring!
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3Ways to Get the Most Out of a Hawaiian Vacation For many people, Hawaii is a land of sun and relaxation. It’s an escape from the dreary, wet winter of the Northwest. A visit to the islands is also the perfect antidote to seasonal affective disorder (SAD). These reasons, and many more, make Hawaii a popular vacation destination on the island of the same name — a museum dedicated to preserving the heritage of Native Hawaiians. Hiking Hawaii has incredibly diverse hiking opportunities. How you approach it really comes down to what
for people in and around Seattle. Hawaii is accessible, being only an inexpensive six-hour flight away, and a stay there is the perfect way to bring a little sunlight back into your life. Throughout the Hawaiian Islands, there are countless destinations to explore. Whether you are interested in history, hiking, wildlife, or simply relaxing on the beach, you will find exactly what you are looking for. Here’s just a small sampling of what you can expect from a Hawaiian getaway. History When it comes to those seeking relics of yesteryear, one of the top destinations is Pearl Harbor. There you will find museums and historical sites dedicated to remembering World War II and the people who fought valiantly and lost their lives during the Pearl Harbor attacks in 1941. There are also many museums and sites dedicated to the long and rich history of the islands themselves, including the Kauai Museum
you want to get out of your experience. You can hike near volcanoes, through lush jungles, or along the coast. Plus, there is something for nearly every skill level. For a relatively accessible trek, there’s Ka’ena Point Trail on Oahu. It’s 3.5 miles long and relatively smooth. In fact, the trail is the remnant of a rail bed and dirt road. It’s great for hiking and biking. Find the excursion that best suits you by visiting DLNR.Hawaii.gov/dsp/hiking. Pure Relaxation If you wish to sit on a beach somewhere, taking in the sun and sounds of the surf, Hawaii has you covered. Want to experience a black-sand beach? Head to the Big Island to Punalu’u Beach. The dark earth makes for a remarkable sight made possible by the island’s volcanic past. For something a little more accessible, Hapuna Beach on the Big Island is another great option. The fine white sands are perfect for relaxation between dips into the warm Pacific waters.
Escape to the Land of Sun and Relaxation
F i o r
For a sinfully delicious Valentine’s Day dinner, turn to this classic Italian steak preparation. It’s simply flavored with rosemary and lemon, allowing the meat to take center stage.
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2 bone-in porterhouse steaks
1/4 cup olive oil 2 sprigs rosemary
• Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste • Lemon wedges, for serving
1. 30 minutes before cooking, remove steaks from fridge to bring them to room temperature. 2. Heat a grill or large cast-iron skillet to high. While heating, brush steaks with half the oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. 3. Place steaks on the hottest part of the grill or pan and cook for 5 minutes. 4. Flip steaks and baste with remaining oil, using rosemary sprigs as a brush. If cooking in a pan, place sprigs next to steaks after basting. 5. Cook for 5–6 minutes for medium-rare. 6. Let steaks sit for at least 5 minutes, slice against the grain, and serve with bone.
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15811 Ambaun Blvd. SW Suite 140 Burien, WA 98166
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For the Love of Physical Therapy
Do Therapy Lights Really Work? How Yoga Can Make a Big Difference
Hawaii: Your Wintertime Cure Bistecca Alla Fiorentina
Prepare for an Adventure in Lapland
S w e d i s h
like Abisko National Park, one of the first established national parks in Sweden.
close to 24 hours of sunlight from June through early August. Between the boulder fields, mountains, and stunning glacial lakes, hiking here is a treat. While hiking, you may spot reindeer herds or lemmings (a small rodent similar to a hamster) racing around rocks. The Sami people have herded reindeer for thousands of years through this very land. In the summer, keep an eye out for blueberries, lingonberries, and the brightly colored cloudberries. Because of the Arctic climate, weather conditions can change quickly from sunshine to rain and heavy fog, so it’s best to dress in layers and bring wind and rain protection if you plan to venture into the backcountry. The fantastic scenery of Swedish Lapland awaits you, no matter when you decide to take your trip. What are you waiting for?
Traveling to Abisko is an adventure in and of itself. From Stockholm, the fastest option is to take one of only two airlines that fly into Kiruna, then travel by train to Abisko. Despite the challenge of getting there, adventure- seeking visitors from around the world arrive each winter to experience the Arctic beauty. Winter attractions include ice skating, snowshoeing, and the Scandinavian sauna (this last one is a must any time of the year). Befriend a Scandinavian and you might be treated to some pickled herring or even a princess cake, a raspberry-filled dessert covered in marzipan. Scandinavians cherish their public lands, and the trail systems are well taken care of. Hikers and backpackers can enjoy the stunning beauty in both late spring and summer, as well as a chance to see the midnight sun. Because of its far-north location, Swedish Lapland receives
If you’re eager for a new adventure in 2019, you’ll surely find it in Swedish Lapland. With trail systems that take you into the Arctic Circle, the northernmost region of Sweden is home to national parks, glaciers, reindeer, the beguiling midnight sun, and spectacular night skies. Though winters are cold, one benefit of traveling to the region in this season is to catch a glimpse of the night sky. The northern lights are visible from a few remote locations
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