Suffering From Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

NEWSLETTER

StaffSpotlight

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JoAnn Keller, OTD, OTR/L, CHT I have a confession to make: I have a horse. Some of you know that, most of you don’t because I don’t talk about it very much at work. I’ve owned, ridden, and trained at least one horse for most of my life. When I was about five years old, my siblings and I (with support of our parents) broke open our piggy banks and took an ice cream bucket of change and dollar bills to my babysitter to buy her horse when they were moving to the city. I “got the bug”, and haven’t been able to escape it!

Photo By: Amy Enderle

It’s gone from being a slightly crazy hobby to being a grand passion. I love the power and freedom that comes with galloping on horseback. I love the process of taking a young horse who doesn’t know much (and might even be somewhat dangerous!) and teaching it to do new and increasingly complicated things, with ever-more subtle cues. I love the smell of hay, shavings, and horse and the feel of their breath when I lean in close to scratch their face or neck. I love hearing a gentle nicker when I enter the barn and call their names. My current horse is Olievia. She’s a Holsteiner/Thoroughbred cross, built for jumping and dressage (like ballet for horses or the compulsories in figure skating!). She’s 18 years old and has been with me for the last 12 years. I am so grateful to be part of her journey, and to have her be part of mine. You might see more of us as a pair in upcoming newsletters!

NEWSLETTER

Hello to all of you! It’s spring (really, it is) and we are starting to think about summer! We had a GREAT response to our “Free Screening” offer. We have filled all of our available spots, and are running a wait list. We are so excited to see those of you who are coming in!

INSIDE: • PATIENT SPOTLIGHTS • SUDOKU • DO YOU SUFFER WITH CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME? • EXERCISE FOR YOUR ARMS • WHAT IS A CHT? Are you in Pain? Call Today And Start Feeling Better Fast! 425-368-7943

Photo By: Amy Enderle

Spring and summer are a great time to be active outdoors and in the yard. Don’t forget to take care of your hands through this time – take breaks, break large projects into manageable chunks, and use good tools to help reduce the strain on your hands and arms. Hope to see you – stop in and say hi, even if you don’t need our services! JoAnn Keller, OTD, OTR/L, CHT

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Patient Spotlight “I feel grateful!” “I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for being such a kind, skillful professional. Those qualities often seem difficult to find in the medical community, and I feel very grateful to have found them in you!” - Amy H.

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This Month’s Sudoku! The goal of Sudoku is to fill in a 9×9 grid with digits so that each column, row, and 3×3 section contain the numbers between 1 to 9. At the beginning of the game, the 9×9 grid will have some of the squares filled in. Your job is to use logic to fill in the missing digits and complete the grid.

5 9

6 3

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1

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3 6 1 9 4 6 1 9

8

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Large print sudoku from largeprintpuzzles.com

Do You Suffer With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? THERE IS NATURAL RELIEF

Ifyousufferfromtinglingornumbnesstothe thumbandfirsttwofingersorhavepain,you may have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS). Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a collection of symptoms that affects people of all ages, but occurs more in women in the 30-64 y/o age range. In addition, women who are pregnant, often suffer with CTS. If you type, write, do repetitive lifting or gripping throughout the day you are at greater risk for developing CTS. What are the symptoms? There is a thick band of tissue around the bottom of your wrist called the carpal ligament. This is much like a bracelet and forms the top of the carpal tunnel. CTS is a compression of the median nerve, which travels through the carpal tunnel in the

wrist.With repetitive movements, swelling or injury to the wrist, the carpal ligament can become tight, causing pressure onto the nerve below. The median nerve supplies the sensation from your thumb, 1st and 2nd fingertips. This is why people suffering with CTS feel numbness or tingling to these areas. However, if the pressure on the nerve continues for too long, damage can result affecting the muscles controlling the hand. CTS can also become painful, even with burning sensations. At times, with severe cases, surgery is required and therapy is neededtofacilitateafullrecovery.However, the key to preventing surgery is having therapy quickly when the symptoms start

occurring. If pressure can be relieved to the nerve,thenervehasachancetohealgreatly reducing the need for surgery. How can CTS be helped? The good news is that our experts have years of experience and training treating people with CTS. There is a lot that can be done to quickly relieve the symptoms, reduce the inflammation and relieve the pressure on the median nerve. In addition, for long-term results our therapists know the right techniques to gently stretch the carpal ligament and show you how to prevent re-injury. For more information on our specialized programs call us today to find out how we can help you live a pain- free life!

WRIST FLEXOR STRETCH Try this movement For Carpal Tunnel.

Helps Flexibility

www.simpleset.net

Useyour unaffected hand to bend the affected wrist up as shown. Keep the elbow straight on the affected side the entire time.

Why Choose Hands For Living?

• Expert, caring, and cost-effective evaluation of your injury or concern. • Information about what has happened and what can be done to help. • Specialized exercises and instructions to complete between sessions. • Comfortable and precise customorthoses (splints), if needed, to protect your elbow, wrist, or hand or improve motion. • Care of wounds, scars, swelling, and injuries to tendon, nerve, bone, muscle or soft tissue. • Practical ergonomic instructions to prevent injuries.

Always consultyour therapistorphysicianbefore startingexercisesyouareunsureofdoing.

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Patient Spotlights

What is a Certified Hand Therapist?

“Thank you all!” “My therapist was amazing, kind, caring and

compassionate. She was very knowledgeable about my injury and was supportive and patient during treatment. Keep up what you’re doing! Thank you for all your help and knowledge during my difficult time of recovery.” - Christina B.

Certified HandTherapists (CHTs) are occupational therapists or physical therapists who have a minimum of five years of clinical experience, including 4,000 hours or more in direct practice inhandtherapy. JoAnnandLaurieareCertifiedHand Therapists who have successfully passed a comprehensive test of complex clinical skills and theory in upper quarter rehabilitation. Helen is working toward her certification in hand therapy and works closely with Laurie and JoAnn. All of our therapists are required to commit to our continued professional development and competency by recertifying every five years. Hand Therapy is the art and science of rehabilitation of the upper limb, which includes the hand wrist, elbow and shoulder girdle. It is a merging of occupational therapy and physical therapy theory and practice that combines comprehensive knowledge of the structure of the upper limb with function and activity. Using specialized skills in assessment,planningandtreatment,handtherapistsprovide therapeutic interventions to prevent dysfunction restore function and or reverse the progression of pathology of the upper limb in order to enhance an individual’s ability to execute tasks and to participate fully in life situations. The intricateanatomyofthearmandhandfrequentlyrequires verydelicatesurgery,oftenwithmicroscopictechniques. The technical complexityof these kinds of surgeries necessitates a high level of competence bytherapists with advanced skills in upper quarter rehabilitation during postoperative recovery. Ourtherapistsmustbeknowledgeableabouttheseadvanced surgical techniques and postoperative therapy programs to become CHTs. Theymust also remain current with changes in hand therapy practice.

“Kind-hearted!” “My therapist informed me well in the dos and don’ts of healing, was considerate of my pain tolerance and helped me not rush the healing process. My therapist was kind-hearted and truly values her patients and puts their wellbeing first.” - Stefan H.

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