I want to continue our discussion of "easy" ways we can treat arthritis by starting with the toughest issue of all: weight. Like it or not, increased body weight is not good for your knees (or your hips, your back, your blood pressure, your...). I could give you lots of statistics like, in the past 15 years obesity rates have doubled, or one out of three kids are now considered obese. I could tell you this, but there is an easier way: go down to the local supermarket and look for yourself.
Notice I said supermarket- not Main Street or a high school basketball game or a Town Hall meeting. In these latter three examples, people made a choice to do an activity they don't have to do. When it comes to shopping for food, EVERYONE does it and thus you'll see a big cross-section of your local population. Start keeping a tally as you walk down the aisles. Unless you live in a college town, you will be horrified.
What we have done in America, and more and more around the globe, is build ...
Walk this Way As someone with lifelong asthma, my upper and lower back are places that hold an extreme amount of tension. This is not uncommon for asthma sufferers. After a bad bout of bronchitis, my back and chest can hurt for weeks. Even during daily activities, I may notice chest heaviness on an allergic day. Back tightness is ever present. So, keeping my back, spine, chest and lungs healthy is a top priority. Sometimes the back has its own way of telling you what to do however, and major discomfort or spasm forces the body to stop, rest and regroup. Within the last ten years I've only had two lower back "incidents," by that I mean back-spasms. One was before my first alumni reunion weekend in Vermont. I woke up and I couldn't stand up straight. I went to my family chiropractor who gave me an adjustment and I was able to attend the weekend. The second incident occurred after I was lifting a television set (I know, I know). I felt my ba...
Treating the cause often improves the gait. For example, gait abnormalities from trauma to part of the leg will improve as the leg heals.
Physical therapy almost always helps with short-term or long-term gait disorders. Therapy will reduce the risk of falls and other injuries.
For an abnormal gait that occurs with conversion disorder, counseling and support from family members are strongly recommended.
For a propulsive gait:
Encourage the person to be as independent as possible.
Allow plenty of time for daily activities, especially walking. People with this problem are likely to fall because they have poor balance and are always trying to catch up.
Provide walking assistance for safety reasons, especially on uneven ground.
See a physical therapist for exercise therapy and walking retraining.
For a scissors gait:
People with a scissors gait often lose skin sensation. Skin care ...
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