FAQ/Self Help

8 Rules to Computer Ergonomics
Back Pain
FREE pre surgical class.
Knee pain
Need a referral to an MD or specialist?
Should Physical Therapy hurt?
Shoulder and Neck pain

8 Rules to Computer Ergonomics

Is most of your time during the day spent at the computer? Whether we need the computer for work or organizing our daily routine, it seems these days, our computer is a necessary component of our daily life. Many of us using the computer are finding it to be painful. There are many ways we can avoid pain at the computer

  1. Make sure that when you are sitting up straight, that the top line that you would type is at eye level and directly in front of you.
  2. Make sure that your elbows are at about 90 degrees and you have slight extension at the wrist when meeting the key board.
  3. Keep the mouse close to you, preferably at the level of the keyboard.
  4. Make sure that you have lumbar support that is actually touching your low back. When you have the right amount of support you should feel your shoulders fall and relax.
  5. Your knees should be equal to or below the level of the hips.
  6. Your feet should be out in front and preferably propped up at a slight angle. Avoid tucking your feet under your seat.
  7. Avoid holding the phone with your neck or reaching for the phone often. If you handle a lot of calls or talk for long periods, get a head set.
  8. Get up out of your seat once an hour for at least 10-15 minutes. Our bodies were not designed to sit for 40 hrs a week.

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Back Pain

Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work days in the U.S. Back pain can have various sources or combinations of sources which may include discs, muscles, nerve, facet joints and or SI joints. Poor posture, poor body mechanics, sedentary lifestyle, ergonomics and muscle weakness or imbalances, frequently, are the cause of most non-traumatic injuries. Following an acute back injury, using ice up to once an hour for 15 minutes over the first 48 hours is most beneficial. If after the first 48 hours the pain has subsided significantly but there is still a lot of stiffness, then heat may be applied once or twice a day for no more than 12 minutes. Heat often feels good on back pain. However, the user must be careful not to abuse it, as too much too often will result in more inflammation. If the pain remains, continue to use ice regularly. If the pain is not debilitating, short 5-10 minute walks 1-3 times a day are beneficial as long as the pain does not increase. Back pain sufferers may also benefit from gentle leg stretches while lying on their back. However, you should seek immediate medical attention if you experience pronounced unresolved weakness, numbness or sudden incontinence. You should also plan to see your doctor if pain does not gradually improve within 2 weeks or if symptoms steadily progress down the leg without relief.
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FREE pre surgical class.

Are you having surgery and don’t know what to expect? Sign up for a Free Pre-op class for knee, back, hip or shoulder surgery.
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Knee pain

If you experience a traumatic knee injury which results in an audible pop along with significant instability, swelling and or pain, do not hesitate to seek medical attention. If the knee is swollen and or painful, ice and elevate the knee for 15 minutes each hour for the first two days and then 3-5 times a day there after. Unless specifically instructed to use heat in the case of a blood clot, avoid using heat on the knee. Gentle pain free stretching of the calf and the hamstring are beneficial. As soon as the pain and swelling allows, it is very important to make sure that you can get the knee straight. If you cannot straighten the knee for walking, then you should use crutches. Initially focusing on tightening the front of the leg by pushing the back of the knee down into the surface below is beneficial in jump-starting the muscles of the knee. If there is a problem with bending, laying down and bending the leg up as comfortably as possible is important in maintaining range of motion as long as pain is not increasing.
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Need a referral to an MD or specialist?

Do you have an orthopedic injury and need a referral to see an orthopedist or neurologist? If you have seen your general doctor and are now looking for a orthopedic or neurosurgeon , we can guide you to the right MDs. Just send us an email and we will be more than happy to assist you.
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Should Physical Therapy hurt?

Generally the answer is no. However, with some injuries and some surgeries a certain amount of pain is expected. Some manual techniques used in therapy can result in pain. However, the pain should not last more than 24-36 hrs. If at that point, pain/swelling/range of motion have not improved or gotten worse, then the therapist may need to change course. With the exception of long course post surgical programs, if your therapist continues to use the same program/techniques for weeks on end with no results and no change in the pain cycle, then you might want to consider a new therapist.
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Shoulder and Neck pain

With many shoulder and neck problems, proper posture can go a long way towards keeping pain under control. Proper posture involves keeping your shoulder blades down and back as if attempting to pinch them together from the bottom tips. This can keep your head and shoulders from jutting forward when in the sitting position. Does your neck bother you in bed? Try rolling up a small towel and placing it inside your pillow case at the base of your neck. This can work well with a medium to thin thickness pillow. If it helps a little, a real cervical pillow might help even more. Visit the relax the back store for more info on cervical pillows.
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