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Cherry Creek Wellness Center News Archive

How to Prepare For Your First Session of Physical Therapy in Denver

Are you about to attend your first session of physical therapy in Denver? You may be unsure of what to expect. There’s no need to be nervous if you’ve never been to physical therapy before. Prepare yourself for your first session with a physical therapist by learning what to do before you arrive, and what you should expect once you get there.

Before Your Appointment
If you were not referred to a physical therapist by your doctor, take some time to find a physical therapist that is highly qualified and has a strong reputation within the community. Consult with friends and family members to see if they have any recommendations, or contact your doctor to ask for suggestions.

Once you have scheduled an appointment, sit down and write a list of all of your symptoms. Also, jot down notes to remind yourself when you start to experience the symptoms. For example, if you only feel pain in your knees after exercising or first thing in the morning, write this down so the physical therapist can help you pinpoint the problem. You may feel nervous or overwhelmed once you’re in front of the physical therapist, which can cause you to forget to say certain things. Make sure your physical therapist knows everything by writing it down ahead of time and bringing these notes with you to the appointment. Learn how to prepare for a physical therapy appointment.

During Your Appointment
The first session of physical therapy is an opportunity for the physical therapist to get a better understanding of what’s causing you pain. The physical therapist will begin by asking you questions, and then performing an examination. What’s included in the examination? That all depends on what’s ailing you. For example, the physical therapist may examine your posture if you’re complaining of constant pain in your back and shoulders. He may also ask you to do basic activities such as walking or laying down so he can see whether you need to make any changes to your body’s positioning.

After the examination, it’s your turn to ask questions. Physical therapists are more than willing to answer any questions or concerns you may have about treatment. How long will it take for you to recover? What changes can you expect to see? Will treatment hurt? Don’t be shy—physical therapists are eager to make you feel more comfortable, so they don’t have any problem with answering these types of questions.

After the First Appointment

The physical therapist will be able to create a customized treatment plan based on what he has learned about you during the examination. But, a treatment plan will not be effective unless you commit to it. Schedule your appointments in advance, and talk to your physical therapist to see if you should be doing anything at home in between your appointments to speed up your progress.

At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we are devoted to helping our patients in every way possible. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!

Avoiding Common Springtime Injuries With Tips From Cherry Creek Wellness Center

March 15, 2017

Winter will soon be over, which means spring is on it's way! Before you tear off your heavy winter jacket to head outside and enjoy the warmer weather, make sure you read these tips from Cherry Creek Wellness Center to avoid common springtime injuries:

Wear protective gear.

Spring is the perfect time to play a game of baseball or hop on a bike, but these physical activities can lead to injuries if you’re not wearing the proper protective gear. One of the most important things you should be wearing is a helmet, as these can greatly reduce your risk of being injured. Be sure to choose the appropriate helmet for the activity you have planned. A good fit is important, so shake your head back and forth before you get moving to ensure your helmet doesn’t wiggle around too much. Learn more about choosing the right bicycle helmet.

Pace yourself.

If you haven’t been physically active during the winter, you should plan on giving your body plenty of time off to promote recovery and prevent injuries. It’s important to ease your way back into exercising and being active, otherwise you may strain your muscles or overexert yourself.

Practice good form when gardening.

Many people look forward to spring so they can begin gardening again. Gardening has many benefits, including the ability to reduce stress and lower blood pressure, however it can also lead to injuries if you’re not practicing the proper form. Make sure you have kneepads to protect your knees while you’re kneeling in the dirt. You should also avoid staying in the same place for an extended period of time or twisting your body when shoveling dirt. Try to get up and stretch every five to ten minutes so you don’t feel aches and pains later.

Be careful when using a ladder.

Do you plan on cleaning out your gutters, washing your windows, or applying a fresh layer of paint to your house? If so, you’re going to need a ladder. Be careful! Many people injure themselves on ladders because they don’t really know the safest way to use them. If you’re using a ladder for spring cleaning, make sure it’s placed on a firm, flat surface and held in place by a friend or family member. You should never have to reach too far when balancing on one of the ladder’s steps. If you find yourself extending your arms to reach something, instead of losing your balance and falling, carefully step off of the ladder and move it over. Remember, a piece of furniture is never a good replacement for a ladder. A stool or chair is not designed to keep you steady while you’re in the air, so don’t put yourself at risk of falling and hurting yourself by using one instead of a ladder.

At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we are devoted to helping our patients prevent and treat pain during all four seasons. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff.

Specialized Physical Therapy and Osteoporosis

March 8, 2017

Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones that develops when the body doesn’t create enough bone, loses bone, or both. People with osteoporosis have weaker bones than most, and are at a high risk of sustaining breaks or fractures after an accident. In fact, it is estimated that one out of every two women and one out of every four men over the age of 50 will break a bone because of osteoporosis. See a physical therapist’s guide to osteoporosis. Luckily, specialized physical therapy can help these individuals manage this devastating condition. Here’s how:


If you have recently been diagnosed with osteoporosis, you may be unsure of what to do next. A physical therapist can help you understand what osteoporosis is, how it affects your body, and what you need to do to protect yourself. Talking to a physical therapist is much better than doing your own research online because a physical therapist will be able to provide you with customized advice based on your condition.


Because people with osteoporosis are at a higher risk of breaking or fracturing bones, falls can be dangerous, especially for those over the age of 50. A physical therapist can help those with osteoporosis improve their balance with core strengthening exercises so they don’t have to worry about falling and seriously injuring themselves.

Weight-Bearing Exercises

Weight-bearing exercises can strengthen bones, which is something every patient with osteoporosis needs. But, trying these exercises at home can be intimidating—not to mention dangerous—so it’s best to have a physical therapist right by your side. Some examples of weight-bearing exercises that you may be asked to do include jogging, tennis, and stomping.

Resistance Exercises

Resistance training is another way to build bone strength, so this will also be incorporated into your physical therapy plan if you have osteoporosis. Physical therapists will have all the tools you need to perform resistance exercises, including resistance bands and small weights. As you move through the different exercises, a physical therapist can stand right next to you and correct your form to ensure you don’t injure yourself.

Back to Basics

When you have osteoporosis, you may find that certain everyday activities such as bending over or laying down lead to aches and pains. But, you don’t have to live your life in discomfort. A physical therapist can show you how to adjust your body to make yourself more comfortable. Some therapists may even visit your home to see if any changes need to be made in your environment. Learning the proper way to get through these daily activities will help you prevent serious, painful injuries down the road.

Do you suffer from osteoporosis? Physical therapy can help—even if you’ve never had an injury. At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we’re devoted to helping patients of all ages recover from injuries and strengthen their bodies in a safe way. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!

To Be or Not To Be Gluten Free?

Lynn Tandler, Nutrition Consultant - March 3, 2017

Polls show that between 17 and 40% of American adults have eliminated or reduced gluten in their diets. As gluten-free options increase in supermarkets and on restaurant menus, more and more people are wondering if they should do the same. This article will discuss what gluten is, what the symptoms of a gluten intolerance are, and reasons not to eliminate gluten.

View the Recipe for Gluten Free Pad Thai Below!

What is gluten anyway? More than half of Americans do not know what it is, according to a 2015 survey by NSF International. Gluten is a mixture of proteins found in foods made with wheat, rye, and barley. It is responsible for the elastic nature of dough, which helps the dough hold together and rise, and what gives bread its chewy texture. The two major proteins that make up wheat gluten are gliadin and glutenin. Gliadin is the portion of the gluten that some people react negatively to. When digested these proteins break down into many different peptides, (essentially strings of amino acids). Problems develop when our digestive systems can’t fully break down all of these peptides and the gluten starts to attack the body. According to Tom O’Bryan, a clinical nutritionist and founder of the Gluten Summit, “there is a cheesecloth-like coating covering your small intestine’s villi. Every time you eat gluten, you tear the cheesecloth a bit, but it regenerates and heals. But, at some point, you don’t heal anymore”.  This is the point when gluten becomes a problem and a sensitivity or intolerance develops.

Gluten intolerance is a fairly common problem. There are several gluten intolerance conditions. Celiac disease (CD) is the most serious form. It is an autoimmune disease that affects about 1% of the population.  Non-gluten sensitivity (referred to as NCGS) is a less serious form of gluten intolerance that affects about 13% of the population.
Gluten intolerance can have many different symptoms that can include gastrointestinal troubles (diarrhea, bloating, indigestion, or constipation), inflammation, headaches, joint and muscle pain, rashes, fatigue, skin problems, brain fog, and even depression. For many people, symptoms may not develop for many years. The symptoms listed can be attributed to other causes as well. But, if you regularly experience some of these symptoms without an apparent cause for a prolonged period, then you may be reacting negatively to the gluten in your diet.
What can you do? If you think you might be sensitive to gluten, then the recommended first step is to ask your doctor to test you for celiac disease and wheat allergies. If the results are negative, consider trying a gluten-elimination diet under the supervision of a nutrition professional. “It is important to be wary of potential nutrient deficiencies when cutting out gluten because you are cutting out sources of fiber, B vitamins, and iron in particular,” says Lisa Cimperman, at the University of Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center (see more info below).
Experts agree that eliminating gluten from the diet can lead to better digestion, less inflammation, more energy, and improve thyroid function. There can be neurological benefits such as less headaches and brain fog also.
Eating a gluten free diet means avoiding foods that contain the grains rye, barley and wheat. This includes pizza, pasta, cakes, cookies, cereals, and bread unless they are gluten-free. There are also common sources of hidden gluten such as alcohol, sauces, soups, and stews (thickened with flour).
If you are avoiding gluten, here is a list of foods that can boost your gluten-free diet and provide some of the nutrients (fiber, iron, and B vitamins) that you may be missing in your diet:
 Fiber Iron B Vitamins
 gluten-free oats  red meats  red meats
 Brown rice  pork  poultry
 lentils  poultry  shellfish
 beans  seafood  salmon
 quinoa  beans  eggs
 peas  dark green leafy veggies  dark green leafy veggies
 almonds  raisins  nuts
 broccoli  peas  

In conclusion, listen to your body! If you are experiencing some of the symptoms listed above for a prolonged period of time on a regular basis then talk to your doctor to explore the possibility of a gluten intolerance. If you are not experiencing any of these symptoms and you regularly eat glutinous foods then it is not a problem for you. Also, be careful not to confuse “gluten-free” with healthy. Just because a cake or cookies or breads are gluten-free does not mean they are good for you. Be careful that you are not swapping your usual glutinous foods for gluten-free junk foods that may have even more calories and sugar. It is still important to read the labels to see if the ingredients are nutritious. If this is confusing for you then consult with a nutritionist for nutrition education or a grocery store tour.

Recipe for Gluten Free Pad Thai

Article by: Lynn Tandler, Nutrition Consultant
Cherry Creek Wellness Center – Wheat Ridge
303.333.3493 ext. 2

Wellness Center in Denver Explains How to Choose the Right Athletic Shoe

March 1, 2017

No matter how many stretches you do or how perfect your form is, if you’re not wearing the right athletic shoe when you exercise, you could easily injure yourself. Buying athletic shoes is not just about finding a style that matches your workout gear. It’s about finding the shoe that will provide you with the support and comfort you need to stay injury-free. According to the experts at Cherry Creek Wellness Center in Denver, here’s how you can choose the right athletic shoe:

Do a wet test.

There’s no way to know which type of athletic shoe you need until you get to know the shape of your foot. To do this, perform a wet test, which involves dipping your foot into water and then stepping on a solid surface such as a piece of paper or concrete. Now, step back and look at the shape your foot created. If you can only see part of your heel and upper foot, and the two areas are narrowly connected, this means you have high arches and will need a cushioned shoe. However, if you can see the majority of your foot in your wet footprint, this means you have either low arches or flat feet, so you will need a shoe with a lot of support. Learn more about the wet test here.

Narrow down your options by the activity.

What do you plan on doing in your athletic shoes? Some shoes are designed for runners, while others are designed for people who lift weights or do aerobics. If you plan on running, choose running shoes, otherwise look for a shoe that is marketed as a cross-trainer, which means it is ideal for exercises performed on a flat, hard surface.

Don’t shop for shoes in the morning.

Believe it or not, the size of your foot will increase and decrease throughout the day. In the morning, your foot is at its smallest, but throughout the day, it begins to expand as you get up and moving. It also expands when you exercise, so it’s best to shop for shoes towards the end of the day. This way, you are trying on shoes at a time where your feet have expanded to the same size they will be during a workout.

Look for comfort.

Many people believe that shoes need to be “broken in” before they are comfortable, but that’s not true. If a shoe isn’t comfortable right when you put it on, it’s not the best shoe for your foot. Get up and walk around the store while wearing the shoes to ensure your feet are comfortable. If you feel pinching or discomfort, ask the salesperson to see another shoe instead of hoping that the shoes will become more comfortable after you wear them a few times.

At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we are devoted to helping our patients prevent and treat pain. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!

Wellness Center in Denver Discusses How to Comfortably Sit At Work

February 22, 2017

By now, you’ve probably heard of the damage you’re doing to your body by sitting at a desk for eight hours a day. But unfortunately, if you have an office job, there’s not much you can do to prevent sitting for this extended period of time. However, there are ways that you can limit or prevent pain, for example, by positioning your office supplies correctly and ensuring you have the proper equipment. According to Cherry Creek Wellness Center in Denver, office workers should follow these tips:


If your keyboard is not positioned correctly, you could develop painful conditions such as carpal tunnel. Sit in your desk chair and test to see if your keyboard is in the right position. First, slide forward in your chair to make sure you can comfortably fit your knees underneath the slide out keyboard tray or desk. Next, place your hands on the keyboard and pretend you are about to begin typing. Check the alignment of your elbows and forearms. Your elbows should be at an angle of greater than 90 degrees, and your forearms should have a slight tilt.  Now, look at the rest of your body. If you had to raise your shoulders or stretch your arms too far out in order to reach the keyboard, you will need to make adjustments.

Computer Monitor

The proper positioning of your computer monitor can help you prevent neck strain caused by leaning forward to get a closer look at your screen. The monitor should be directly in front of you so you never have to twist your neck to see it clearly. You should also test its position to make sure you are not tilting your head upwards or downwards in order to read items on the screen. To make sure your monitor is far enough away from you, hold your arm out in front of you. The monitor should sit about 20 to 26 inches away, which is about the length of your arm. Learn more about how to sit at a computer to prevent pain.

Computer Mouse

When using a mouse with your desktop computer, make sure you are controlling the movements through your elbow instead of your wrist, which should be kept straight at all times. Try not to use a mouse that has a curved design, as this can throw off the alignment of your wrist. Although wrist rests are designed to prevent pain, research has shown they can actually put more pressure on the wrist. Avoid using these wrist rests and focus on keeping your wrists aligned and controlling the movements with your elbow instead.

Are you feeling aches and pains after a long day of sitting at a desk job? At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we’re devoted to helping patients of all ages recover from injuries and strengthen their bodies in a safe way. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!

Preparing For Massage Therapy at Cherry Creek Wellness Center

February 15, 2017

If you’ve been injured and told to try physical therapy, your physical therapist may suggest massage therapy as part of your treatment plan. Massage therapy can help with a number of injuries and ailments, including low back pain, tight muscles, muscle spasms, and even anxiety. Learn more about stress management and the benefits of massage therapy. But, if you’ve never received massage therapy before, you may be wondering what you should expect during your first massage. Here’s what you need to know to prepare yourself for massage therapy at Cherry Creek Wellness Center:

Wear what makes you feel comfortable.

Some people have anxiety about getting a massage because they don’t want to undress in front of a massage therapist. This is nothing to worry about—you can take off whatever you feel comfortable removing. As long as you are comfortable and the massage therapist can reach the affected area, it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing.

Speak up if you have allergies.

Massage therapists will often use massage oils and other products during the course of the massage. If you are allergic to anything, you need to let the massage therapist know at the beginning of the session so he or she can avoid using anything that may irritate your skin. It’s perfectly fine to ask the massage therapist to see the products he or she will be using prior to the session beginning.

Tell your massage therapist when it hurts.

Every patient has different aches and pains, so you will need to let your massage therapist know when you are feeling discomfort. You should never suffer through pain in silence—always be vocal and communicate with your therapist.

Breathe deeply.

Massages can go a long way in reducing stress and anxiety, but you have to allow your body to relax in order to experience these benefits. Throughout the massage, focus on taking deep, slow breaths to calm your mind and body. This breathing technique combined with the massage will help you quickly enter relaxation mode.

Go more than once.

If you’re receiving massage therapy to help you recover from an injury, you can’t expect your problem to heal with just one session. Make sure you talk to the massage therapist about the number of sessions you will need to see an improvement, and then schedule them in advance so you commit to your recovery.

Talk to your massage therapist about your noise preferences.

Some therapists play music during a massage, while others keep the room completely quiet. Some therapists will engage in conversation with you, while others prefer to massage clients in peace and quiet. If you don’t want to talk during your massage, or if you would rather have the music turned off, make this known to the therapist.

At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we’re devoted to helping our patients treat pain through the use of massage and physical therapy. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!

Why Do So Many Millennials Need Physical Therapy in Denver?

February 8, 2017

As you age, you become more likely to suffer from soft tissue and bone injuries, which may require multiple physical therapy sessions to properly heal. However, many young people in the Millennial generation may also find themselves in need of physical therapy in Denver. Why? It could have to do with the way they choose to exercise.

High Intensity Workouts & Millennials

Millennials tend to be pressed for time because of their busy schedules, so they have turned to high intensity workouts so they can still see results without spending hours at the gym. High intensity workouts are tough exercises where people are pushed to their limits and given little to no downtime in between each set or routine. Workouts such as CrossFit or Tough Mudder races have been embraced by Millennials because of their challenging exercises and proven results. However, Millennials who choose to engage in high intensity workouts are beginning to suffer from serious injuries, including hip and knee pain. Learn more about why high intensity workouts are sending some Millennials to physical therapy.

How can these workouts injure so many young, fit individuals? It could be because these workouts focus so heavily on building strength and exhausting the muscles instead of improving flexibility and stretching. High intensity workouts put a lot of stress on the joints and soft tissue, which will eventually cause injuries even if you’re a healthy, fit Millennial.

Common Millennial Injuries Caused by High Intensity Workouts

One of the injuries that many physical therapists are beginning to notice in Millennials is femoroacetabular impingement, which occurs when the ball of the femur doesn’t fit tightly into the hip socket. This can be caused by extended periods of high intensity exercise, especially if the individual is not using the proper form during weight lifting or other types of workouts. According to the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, engaging in high intensity workouts can also increase your risk of developing hip osteoarthritis, which is a type of degenerative joint disease that usually appears as you grow older.

Prevention Tips for Millennials

To avoid ending up in a physical therapist’s office, it’s important for Millennials to create a more balanced exercise schedule that incorporates both high intensity and low impact workouts. For example, instead of doing CrossFit everyday, Millennials should alternate CrossFit and yoga so they can enjoy the benefits of both exercises and keep their bodies strong and healthy. Yoga can help you stretch out your tight, sore muscles and work on your range of motion, while high intensity workouts will allow you to burn a large amount of calories and build strength.

Are you feeling aches and pains as a result of high intensity workouts? At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we’re devoted to helping patients of all ages recover from injuries and strengthen their bodies in a safe way. Are you interested in learning more about our services?  Contact us today by calling 303-333-3493 to talk to a member of our helpful staff!