Our Doctor Blog

Keeping the Hips Healthy

The hip joint is part of the foundation of our body; our weight bearing, our walking and general day to day movement. Part of what constitutes healthy hip function is a free range of motion in all directions and the strength and stability to allow us to move with ease. This comes form a combination of our supporting muscles, ligaments, cartilage and bone density.
The joint is a ball and socket design, and classified as synovial; meaning it has a capsule that surrounds it, and is filled with synovial fluid. This fluid is an important lubricator of our joints, and also helps with nutrient and waste circulation in cartilage and joint surfaces. Healthy forms of movement and weight bearing exercise help keep this fluid nourishing our joint surfaces, which is important in maintaining longevity in our joints. Bone density is another important factor in our weight bearing bones and joints. By staying active and putting weight or stress through your bones, your body responds by strengthening the existing bone tissue. Coupled with healthy sources of calcium and vitamin D, your bones will have the tools they need for healthy structure and support. Supplements can add further benefit in healthy joint surfaces and cartilage; chondroitin sulfate, glucosamine sulfate and hyaluronic acid are some examples of supporting nutritional therapy. Consult with your health care provider for further information.
Some examples of healthy exercise can include pool exercise or aquatic therapy, yoga, walking, running, bike riding or tai chi. It’s a good idea to integrate a stretch routine into your day, maybe in the morning to help fight stagnation in muscles and joints that may accumulate as we sleep. Using a foam roller is another great way to promote circulation and flexibility in the gluteals, hips and things. Strengthening your hips and core is another good way to help prevent pain and maintain your function; whether it’s your golf swing, jazzercise, or just being active in general. This can be done just with your body weight or a simple resistance band, going to the gym isn’t mandatory to add meaningful exercise to your routine. Consulting with your chiropractor, physical therapist or personal trainer are great resources to help you in this category.
It’s important to remember that movement, exercise and healthy dietary choices help maintain the function and health of our joints and connective tissues. Part of Newton’s first law states that objects in motion stay in motion, and objects at rest remain at rest; which can also be said for our joints and bodies!

What is Yoga Therapy?

A therapy first developed more than 100 years ago in India is helping contemporary Salem people lead less painful, more dynamic lives.

Salem’s Leah Fish says the therapeutic yoga sessions led by Dr. Zohra Campbell at Indigo Wellness Center have sped her healing from a compression fracture; Rebecca Woodcock, who faces the challenges of an artificial knee, scoliosis and a “lumbar region completely compromised from nerve damage in the lower back” has experienced increased flexibility and reduced pain and reports the practice has helped her “regain that sense of movement and that sense of confidence in your body that is as important as anything else.”  Christine Hannegan says she can’t imagine life without her therapeutic yoga at Indigo.

Significantly more training is required to conduct yoga therapy sessions than to teach traditional yoga classes.  Practitioners such as Campbell – the only one in Salem – must study the subject for 300 hours (200 hours are already required for traditional yoga teachers) and learn how the therapy improves the physical and psychological status of individuals with Parkinson’s disease, how it can ease the transition of teenage girls from incarceration to society and how it improves the flexibility of elderly individuals, according to the International Association of Yoga Therapists.

Supporters cite Scientific evidence for the effectiveness of yoga therapy, especially as a treatment of depression, anxiety and schizophrenia so soundly that practitioners like Campbell now work in areas as diverse as early childhood education programs or helping children with autism, assisting veterans afflicted with cancer, breathing difficulties or PTSD or supporting patients who suffer from insomnia or autoimmune illnesses, among other ailments.

“I love this direction that my work is taking,” Campbell says.  “I entered a 300- hour yoga therapy training more than two years ago with the intention of bringing my chiropractic and yoga worlds together.  I was blown away at learning how current brain science and neurobiology are explaining how and why the practices of yoga: movement, pranayama, and mindfulness are so beneficial to mental health and general well-being.”

Indigo client Leah Fish is afflicted with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome on both hands and recently suffered a compression fracture brought on by osteoporosis.  A yoga student since 2000, Fish began taking therapeutic yoga at Indigo Wellness about a year ago to address loss of flexibility, increased pain and healing times.  She was delighted with the results.

“The orthopedist said I healed faster and better because I did yoga,” she says.  “That was the best news.  They say, ‘mind, body and soul,’ and it’s true, I’ll tell you!”

After the introduction of yoga therapy in the late 1800s, the practice received new, wide recognition in North America in the 1980s when Dr. Dean Ornish published a study of the effects of lifestyle intervention on heart disease.  Ornish’s study showed that heart disease could be reversed through lifestyle changes including therapeutic yoga, meditation and diet.  In the 1990s, Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease was approved for health insurance coverage, making yoga therapy an official part of medical procedures.

… to read full article written by Salem Weekly, click HERE.