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A Quick Fix for Vertigo

Many people think vertigo is something that only happens as we age, but that’s really not the case. Jessica is in her early 20’s and she recently experienced some severe symptoms, which she originally thought could be the flu. It turns out, she had a case of vertigo.

A Quick Fix for VertigoThis particular morning should have been like any other, but instead of waking up and feeling ready to start the day, Jessica knew that something was off. When she sat up in bed she began to feel very dizzy. She laid back down and tried rolling over and that’s when the room began to spin uncontrollably. Jessica sat back up slowly and waited a few moments for the room to slow down, eventually the dizziness mellowed out enough for her to get out of bed.

As she got ready for work Jessica did everything very carefully in an effort to prevent the dizziness from coming back, although she still didn’t feel completely normal. As soon as she got to work she went to the restroom and it hit her again. The dizziness was so severe, she sat down and stayed there for what felt like several minutes, until the spinning began to slow down.

At this point Jessica told a coworker she wasn’t feeling well and just as she sat down at her desk she immediately began to vomit. Her coworker instantly pegged her condition as vertigo, something that she had once experienced herself. To Jessica’s surprise, her coworker explained that seeing a physical therapist at Northern PT helped her feel better rather quickly.

We were able to get Jessica in for treatment that morning and she didn’t need a referral from her doctor – she was able to walk right in. She began working with Terri, who eased her mind and explained the different aspects vertigo. Jessica reported that after being treated her symptoms decreased and by the end of the day she was back to feeling normal again.

We checked back in with Jessica a week later and we’re happy to report that she hadn’t felt an ounce of dizziness since being treated by her physical therapist. We’re so glad her coworker was able to recognize the signs of vertigo quickly so we could begin helping in her recovery process. Vertigo is often triggered by a change in the position of your head and people typically experience a few of the following symptoms:

  • Spinning, tilting, feeling unbalanced being pulled in one direction
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Abnormal or jerking eye movements
  • Headache
  • Sweating
  • Ringing in the ears or hearing loss

Symptoms can last a few minutes to a few hours or more and may come and go. Vertigo can be a terrifying condition and because it comes on suddenly people often panic and aren’t sure where to turn. If you’re experiencing the symptoms listed above, give us a call so we can determine if you do have vertigo and begin treatment right away.

 

We also spoke with Ryan, a teacher in the Coopersville school district who had a severe case of vertigo. After just one session with one of our physical therapists, he experienced tremendous relief from his symptoms. Read his story here.

Advocating for Patient Care & Physical Therapy

Like all physical therapists, Corey Kuipers loves to help others. He cares deeply for our profession and wants to ensure a bright future for his patients. One of the best ways he’s found to achieve this is through advocacy – by ensuring the voices of his patients are heard on Capitol Hill.

Corey is a physical therapist in our Coopersville clinic. He has a contagious passion for raising awareness about the role of physical therapy, the value physical therapy brings to health care, and the quality of care that patients receive. In 2017 he went to Washington, D.C and Lansing, MI., to advocate on behalf of our profession and the patients we serve. We sat down with Corey to talk about his experience, and how he initially became interested in the advocacy portion of our profession.

Advocating for Patient Care & Physical TherapyCorey (second from left) is pictured on Capitol Hill

Why were you initially drawn to the advocacy side of physical therapy?
I grew up in politics. My dad served as both a State Representative and State Senator in Michigan so I learned from a young age that if you want something, you have to advocate for it and speak with those who can elicit these changes. Serving in a liaison role for Northern Physical Therapy has been a great opportunity to collaborate with policy makers in multiple efforts to advocate for policy changes that seek to address both the immediate and long-term needs of our profession. These issues include payment reform, innovative healthcare delivery, improved access to care for patients and consumers, advancement in quality initiatives, and demonstration of the benefits of physical therapy.

Advocating for Patient Care & Physical TherapyCorey, who is pictured here with members of the APTA, is also is a member of the MPTA Legislative committee

What brought you to Capitol Hill to advocate on our behalf?
Physical therapy often gets overlooked, or even forgotten about, by the federal and local branches of government. This is, in large part, due to the fact that they don’t know the services we provide. In order for our profession to thrive and allow patients easy access to PT, we all need to advocate policy makers, consumers and payers on the value and integrity of physical therapy. We need to be a voice to our patients and our communities. With the ongoing opioid epidemic, this is our time to advocate for safe alternatives to pain relief.

Advocating for Patient Care & Physical TherapyCorey (far right) was one of five from the state of Michigan that attended the Federal Forum in Washington, D.C.. He visited the offices of two United States Senators and 14 United States Representatives. They discussed issues surrounding the Repeal of the Medicare Therapy cap for outpatient services, Sports Medicine Licensure clarity act, and the SAFE PLAY act and youth concussions.

 

What advice do you have for those who may want to advocate to their legislators but don’t know where to start?
When people hear about advocacy, especially when it comes to advocating to those in the government, they tend to shy away for fear that they lack knowledge on certain issues, or fear of being looked down upon. The reality is, legislators are human, and are seeking to learn more about issues that are important to you, their constituents. When it comes down to it, they need you to be happy. They are going to listen to what you have to say because they want your support. At the end of the day, legislators are people, just like you and me.

Advocating for Patient Care & Physical TherapyCorey (left) is pictured with members of the APTA

How would you like to expand on advocating in the future?
I would like to continue to stay involved with the MPTA and attend advocacy events such as state advocacy day in Lansing, the Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce Legislative Breakfasts, and the Federal Advocacy Forum. I believe it’s important to develop a rapport with these legislators and the more they trust you the more likely they are to support your cause. I’m happy to advocate for my profession and would like to encourage fellow physical therapists and other healthcare professionals to become involved in advocating for our patients as well.

West Michigan Legislative Luncheon
In addition to the wonderful work that Corey is doing, Northern Physical Therapy is the premier sponsor for the annual Legislative Luncheon, which is hosted by the Coopersville Chamber of Commerce. This year’s luncheon will take place on Monday, June 19, 2018.

 

 

Northern Physical Therapy is a Grand Rapids Physical Therapy based clinic with locations in Muskegon, Wayland, Lowell, and the surrounding areas. Our goal is to help clients feel great whether they’re suffering from back pain or a sports injury. We offer free consultations at each of our clinics. You don’t have to live with pain!

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Should Physical Therapy Be Used To Prevent Injuries?

Should Physical Therapy Be Used To Prevent Injuries?

While most people don’t have “physical therapy” on their list of annual check-ups, we do see a lot of clients regularly – even when they’re not injured. We often treat people who might notice a slight ache here or there, or maybe they don’t move the way they used to. They begin to think about their future and how they want to live longer, feel great, and be able to keep up with the kids as they age. In order to try to prevent injuries, future back pain, or surgery, many turn to physical therapy as opposed to other forms of pain management like massage, prescription drugs, chiropractic visits, or injections.

WHO CAN BENEFIT
Regular visits to a physical therapist can be very beneficial for just about anyone. But what if you’ve been to therapy in the past, do you need to keep going? Let’s say, for example, you’ve visited a physical therapist for pain in your arm and the pain was completely resolved, there isn’t much of a need to come back in and have your arm looked at annually. However, we often find that patients are rarely 100% healthy in every part of their body. Just because your arm pain has been resolved, the point of a regular check-up is to make sure everything else is functioning correctly and to address other issues before they lead to another major incident. We’ve highlighted a few specific groups of people who can really benefit below.

Athletes can prevent injuries
Most of our preventive athlete clients are looking for ways to keep their bodies functioning in top condition and avoid a future injury. We recommend things like a gait analysis or functional movement screen (FMS) because they allow us to detect potential weaknesses that could lead to an injury later on. If you’re concerned that regular physical therapy checkups could be costly, consider the alternative. Consulting with a physical therapist before training for a marathon is a good idea to avoid a future injury and to learn what your weaknesses are and what you body needs during training. This consultation will cost you considerably less than getting injured, and we often find that even annual visits can prevent injuries. If you come in once and we find a few potential issues, we can give you some exercises to do at home and chances are, you won’t need to return for a follow up visit.

Should Physical Therapy Be Used To Prevent Injuries?Prevent injuries with physical therapy

Medicare Coverage & Skilled Maintenance
There has been a longstanding myth that Medicare does not cover services to maintain or manage a person’s current condition when improvement is not possible. This has been a touchy subject for a number of years, but in order to simplify the details, Medicare will cover skilled therapy to restore or improve a condition, to prevent or slowly decline a condition, and to maintain a condition. If you’re not sure whether you or your loved one falls into any of these categories, contact our offices and we can help you determine what your coverage will be. In any case, people who fall into the category of skilled maintenance would benefit greatly from a regular physical therapy checkup.

WHAT YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW
Nearly every state, including Michigan, allows you to visit a physical therapist without a referral from your doctor or approval from your insurance company. If you have any questions you can call one of our clinics and have us verify your insurance before you come in. We also offer free consultations where we can talk about your health and see if physical therapy is a good option for you.

When it comes to your health, you know your body better than anyone else. Living with pain or an injury is never fun, so whether it’s in a physical therapist’s office or not, learning new forms of physical activity, and ways to care for your body that are safe and appropriate for you, is the most important thing.

 

Northern Physical Therapy is helping patients prevent injuries and feel great by relieving back pain, shoulder pain, knee pain, and helping those who have suffered sprains and strains through a sports injury. We’re located in the Grand Rapids and Muskegon areas with clinics throughout west Michigan. Click to see the clinic nearest you.

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LOCATIONS

Allendale > 6173 Lake Michigan Dr.
Caledonia > 9321 Cherry Valley
Cedar Springs > 308 S. Main
Comstock Park > 4615 W. River Dr.
Coopersville > 25 Conran
Grant > 17615 W. Moore
Lowell > 2050 W. Main
Norton Shores > 6022 Harvey
Sparta > 31 Ida Red
Wayland > 709 West Superior

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