April ’21 Newsletter

April ’21 Newsletter

After a welcome Easter break, we are feeling grateful! This month’s newsletter has all you need to know about what’s going on at the clinic this month. Below you’ll find details of our workplace assessments, an update on term 2 enrolments of our popular group therapy program, as well as a birthday celebration and a fond farewell. Enjoy!

Peter turns 50!
We’re always game for a celebration (and any excuse to eat cake) so we were not going to let St Leonards Physiotherapy’s owner, Peter Sharp’s 50th birthday pass by without fanfare. Many happy returns to Peter! I’m sure all our readers and Peter’s patients will join us in wishing him well! Enjoy your celebrations and congratulations on your half-century!

Hello, goodbye…

When one door closes, another one opens. After many years of hard work, Libby, who, prior to Peter taking on the clinic, was the owner of St Leonards Physiotherapy, is leaving us for pastures new – she is embarking on a new challenge… Retirement! 
Here’s to the start of many years of down time and new hobbies! 

Whilst we lose Libby to quiet life, as well as saying goodbye to our current secretary Yvette who is also moving on, we gain Cheryl who will be on our front desk along with Catherine. We look forward to getting to know both of them!

Term 2 group therapy – Now full!
Group therapy sessions are always very popular and this term they have proven more so than ever – all spaces are now fully booked!

Group Therapy focuses initially on the development of core muscle control in the pelvis and shoulder girdle, before moving on to other parts of the body. The aim is restore natural, normal movement patterns to resolve pain or injury.

We have three class types (Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced) available to suit all levels of ability. If you missed out this term but are interested in future classes, please stay posted over the coming months for details of how to book for term 3.

Workplace assessments

You may not know that as well as helping individuals with ongoing conditions, recovery and injury prevention, we also help businesses and their employees by offering workplace assessments. These can help decrease workplace sickness and worker’s compensation claims by ensuring employees are fit for work, set up correctly at work and managing any workplace injuries… Win win!

We have a range of services including pre-employment assessments, workplace ergonomic education and assessments, as well as individual one-on-one sessions to help prevent injury, or treat a workplace injury. 

To find out more about our workplace assessments or to book a package, please visit our website or contact us: (02) 9438 1782 or enquiries@stleonardsphysio.com.au.

Get fit to ski workshop

Join our physiotherapist Josh for an informative and practical workshop on how to get ready for the upcoming ski season. With COVID halting people’s ski trips, it will be a great reintroduction to the preparation required prior to hitting the slopes. 

In the presentation, Josh will be discussing: 
– Common skiing injuries
– Types of skiing and the differing demands
– Specific exercises to condition yourself in the upcoming months
– Warm up and recovery on the day 
– How to tailor a preparation program 

Please register at the front desk of our clinic in St Leonards or alternatively call on 9438 1782. We look forward to seeing you there!

The Education Quarter

Scoliosis: What is it and how do we treat it?

Have you ever been told that carrying a heavy backpack on one shoulder or sleeping on one side can warp your spine? This isn’t necessarily the case (although carrying heavy backpacks certainly doesn’t do your back any good). There is, however, a condition called ‘scoliosis’ that can lead to the spine becoming unnaturally curved. It is usually first identified in childhood or adolescence, but can affect people of any age.

What is Scoliosis?

Scoliosis is a condition that causes the spine to curve sideways and to rotate. It can be caused by other conditions, such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy, or by issues elsewhere in the body, but the cause of most cases of scoliosis is unknown. In fact, around 80% of cases have no identifiable cause.

There are two main categories of scoliosis:
Structural scoliosis is where there is a physical curve to the spine. Functional scoliosis is where the spine appears to be curved, but this is a result of an irregularity elsewhere in the body, such as different leg lengths. Structural scoliosis is permanent, although symptoms can be reduced. Functional scoliosis, on the other hand, can often be resolved.

Most cases of scoliosis are mild, and it may take a while to notice it at all. However, the more severe the curve, the more of an impact it will have on your life. Some cases can continue to worsen over time. In severe instances, the amount of space within the chest can be reduced, affecting lung function and restricting the heart’s ability to pump effectively. The curve of the spine can also impact other areas of the body, causing pain or muscle spasms elsewhere.

Scoliosis symptoms

Mild cases of scoliosis cause little or no pain, but there are other signs that you can look out for. The most common symptoms of scoliosis are:

  • Uneven shoulders
  • Uneven waist
  • One shoulder blade sticking out more than the other
  • One hip sitting higher than the other
  • In more severe cases, you may experience:
  • Trouble breathing
  • Back pain
  • Muscle spasms

Cases of scoliosis are often first spotted when a friend or family member notices that the person’s clothes are hanging unevenly, or that their spine appears curved when they see them changing or in swimming clothes.

Most scoliosis patients will be identified as children or teenagers – commonly during growth spurts around the time of puberty. However, some cases of scoliosis may go undiagnosed well into adulthood, and some adults will develop degenerative scoliosis as they age.

The impact of Scoliosis

Around 90% of instances of scoliosis are considered mild, and these are often thought to not need treatment as they cause little or no pain. However, even mild curvature of the spine can lead to other issues, such as:
Difficulty maintaining balance
Uneven gait when walking or running
Loss of alignment in the hips
Reduced range of motion due to lessened flexibility in the spine
Muscle aches or spasms
Loss of stability, increasing the risk of injury or damage to tissues
Low self-esteem if the curve is noticeable or clothes appear uneven
Therefore, it’s always worth looking into what treatment options are available if and when scoliosis is first noticed.

Treatment for Scoliosis

In some instances, particularly those of children, it may be necessary to wear a back brace to prevent the curvature from worsening.
Physiotherapists will then focus on developing an exercise routine to strengthen your muscles, increase your mobility and develop core stabilisation. Massage and hydrotherapy can also help to reduce pain and discomfort.
In severe cases, surgery may be required, but this is becoming much less common practice due to advances in early detection programs and bracing treatments. Surgery is always a last resort if all other forms of therapy have not proven effective.

Contact us on (02) 9438 1782 or email enquiries@stleonardsphysio.com.au for a spine check to assess any issues you might be experiencing.

Happy to help.

If you’d like to book an appointment, or have questions about any pain or injury you may be experiencing, please get in touch.