Trismus after radiation – some great research!

A lot of things suffer when you can’t properly open your mouth:   Speaking, chewing and swallowing can all become compromised. So often I hear from clients that these side effects of cancer treatment are ‘better than having cancer.’ What if someone who received radiation treatment for head and neck cancer could be cancer-free AND have near-normal mobility? Radiation can contribute to dense and immobile soft tissues such as muscles and tendons.  In the face and neck, this can lead to difficulty opening the mouth – otherwise known as trismus. A recent study shows promise in its exploration of the use of manual therapy to soften radiation-toughened soft tissues and improve mouth opening.  A single session of. manual therapy was found to improve mouth opening in people who had received radiation treatment. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology/article-abstract/2790038 Hopeful news indeed for anyone who is seeking full recovery after cancer treatment.

Does a detox massage even exist?

Everyday it seems like a new client comes looking for a detoxifying massage or lymphatic drainage treatment. At this point, there is no proof to the belief that massage can help to detoxify the body. In fact, it really isn’t known exactly what a ‘detox’ is. That doesn’t stop theories from popping up. Your massage therapist can offer a treatment that supports improved flow of lymph fluid and a massage that helps you to feel significantly better than before the treatment. However, they can’t guarantee that your body has fewer toxins after the massage. Ask questions, do your research. Clear expected outcomes explained before the treatment begins can ensure that you are getting the treatment you really want.

Sitting is not benign

Sitting seems to be relaxing. Why is it, then, that long periods of sitting can lead to numbness, tingling and tired legs? Look at the image of the blood vessels, nerves and lymphatic vessels that cross the front of the hip. All of these essential conduits get compressed when we sit. Imagine lightly squeezing a nerve or blood vessel for 8 continuous hours. It stands to reason that, after years of this, our legs don’t feel that great. Stand, move, stretch….whatever it takes throughout your work day to take some of the pressure off of your hips and all of the important vessels involved in sitting.

Hey heroes!

If you’re reading this, you’re a hero for making it through a year of pandemic. We have survived, but may be a little worse for wear. Not only our minds, but our bodies have taken a hit over the past 12 months. Not enough exercise, poor work ergonomics at the kitchen table and unrelenting demands on our time and energy have left us more than a little depleted. This is not a message to do more or try harder. It is an acknowledgement that you are nothing short of a hero for still trying. Congratulations!

So you fell on the ice….

Icy sidewalks under a thin layer of snow are, to say the least, treacherous. At some point all of us take a fall. It may take the form of windmilling arms or a quick thunk on the back side. Your body and the ground make a hard collision. Stiffness and bruising are usually the result. They are painful but typically resolve on their own within a few days. If pain persists beyond a few days, it is advisable to seek medical help. Many a bruise covers deeper injury such as a chipped tail bone or a small fracture. Pain that lasts and doesn’t get better can be a sign that help is required for full recovery. Wishing you a safe winter!