Acupuncture

Q. Does Acupuncture hurt?
Ans.
Acupuncture should not hurt. Feelings of apprehension are commonly felt because of general fear of needles. However, the needles are very small and are unable to injure soft tissue or arteries.

Q. How long does Acupuncture treatment take?
Ans.
The needle may only be inserted and stimulated for up to a maximum of 20 minutes. The type of musculoskeletal injury (acute and or chronic) will dictate the extent of time, use of electro stimulation and number of needles required.

Q. Are the Acupuncture needles clean?
Ans.
THI health care practitioners use sterile one-time use needles with every patient. Common practice for acupuncture therapy sessions at THI is to open each acupuncture needle in front of the patient and to review and reiterate informed consent for acupuncture.

Q. Is Acupuncture covered by insurance plans?
Ans.
THI health care practitioners have completed their acupuncture at an accredited institution that has provided a designation number that can be used for extended health care coverage. Most insurance plans have acupuncture coverage within paramedical services. If you are unsure of the details of your extended health care plan simply your insurance company.

ART®

Q. How does ACTIVE RELEASE TECHNIQUES (ART®) differ from other types of manual therapy?
Ans.
Active Release Techniques (ART®) soft tissue management system is so different from other manual therapies because it has been granted a medical patent. In order to become an ART provider, each professional must complete extensive hands on instruction and written/practical testing unparalleled by other soft tissue programs.

An ART provider is trained to palpate and treat more than 300 muscular and fascial injuries and over 100 nerve entrapments (pinched nerve) which often cause numbness and tingling.

Q. What is an ART treatment like?
Ans.
Every ART® session is actually a combination of examination and treatment. The ART® provider uses his or her hands to evaluate the texture, tightness and movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Abnormal tissues are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements.

These treatment protocols – over 500 specific moves – are unique to ART®. They allow providers to identify and correct the specific problems that are affecting each individual patient. ART® is not a cookie-cutter approach.

Q. Does Active Release Therapy (R) hurt?
Ans.
ART® is a manual therapy technique that involves movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Depending on the nature of the injury; acute (NEW) or chronic (OLD) will dictate if the therapy session will be uncomfortable. ART® is effective in the management of soft tissue injuries because of its aggressive approach to repairing injuries and the use of movement to areas that are damaged due to low oxygen (hypoxia), strains (muscle), sprains (ligament) or poor blood supply. THI health care practitioners are experienced in the management of soft tissue injuries and will minimize any discomfort that may be experienced during the therapy session.

Q. How does Active Release Therapy work?
Ans.
ART is a patented, state of the art soft tissue system/movement based massage technique that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fasciitis, knee problems, and tennis elbow are just a few of the many conditions that can be resolved quickly and permanently with ART. These conditions all have one important thing in common: they are often a result of overused muscles.

Q. Is Active Release covered by insurance plans?
Ans.
At THI the health care practitioners utilize ART® as a form of therapy in conjunction with their professional designation.  THI Therapy includes ART® and will be provided by the THI health care practitioners and thus covered by most insurance plans.

Chiropractic

Q. Is Chiropractic safe?
Ans.
Yes.  Chiropractic is a complementary and alternative medicine health care profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractors emphasize manual and manipulative therapy for the treatment of soft tissue and joint injuries. Chiropractic is widely recognized as one of the safest drug-free, non-invasive therapies available for the treatment of muscle and joint complaints.  No health treatment is completely free of potential adverse effects. The risks associated with care from chiropractic therapy, however, are very small. Many patients feel immediate relief following chiropractic treatment.

Q.What education has a chiropractor obtained?
Ans.
Great majority of Chiropractors have undergraduate degrees (Kin, BSc, BA).  In addition Chiropractors are required to complete a four-year Doctor of Chiropractic degree, which includes three years of applied sciences and one year of internship.  Over 4,400 hours of education/training including three years of EBM (Evidence Based Medicine), research, methodology and critical review courses. Please be aware that the above-mentioned education, training and hours are based on CMCC’s (Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College) requirements.

Q.What should I wear when I come in for my appointment?
Ans.
It is best to wear comfortable athletic clothing for THI Therapy sessions involving chiropractic therapy. THI Therapy sessions will involve movement (active care) and corrective exercises.

Q.How long or how often do I have to see my Chiropractor?
Ans.
THI Treatment plans for musculoskeletal injuries are 8-10 THI Therapy sessions. This treatment plan can be completed over 4 weeks (2 treatments a week) or 8 weeks (1 treatment a week). There are stages of the treatment plan that will involve passive care (THI health care practitioner delivered). The severity of the injury will dictate the length of time within this phase.  The next progression within the treatment plan is to focus on endurance strength and proprioceptive training. The final phase is full return to activity pain free with a prescription of exercises to prevent re-injury and to recognize poor postural positions that cause injury. These corrective exercises are designed to build confidence and strength. Corrective exercises are prescribed on the first visit to encourage involvement of the patient in his/her healing process.

Q.Do Chiropractors take X-Rays?
Ans.
Some chiropractors utilize x-rays as a method of evaluation. However, THI health care practitioners do not. Radiological images (x-rays) are required if an acute traumatic injury has occurred and a THI health care practitioner suspects structural damage to bone.

Q.Is Chiropractic covered by insurance plans?
Ans.
THI health care practitioners with the designation as a chiropractor have completed their chiropractic education at an accredited institution that has provided a designation number that can be used for extended health care coverage. Most insurance plans have chiropractic coverage within paramedical services. If you are unsure of the details of your extended health care plan simply contact your insurance company.

Custom Orthotics

Q.How can custom orthotics help me?
Ans.
Unfortunately, many individuals have inefficient weight and force distribution in their feet. These can be either structural or mechanical, flat feet for example are very common. Custom orthotics are meant to correct these imbalances, which are usually the root cause of many other ailments such as lower back pain and shin splints.

Q. How does it work?
Ans.
Examination of the lower limb; hip, knees, and feet is conducted first. Observation of standing and walking- gait analysis is also performed. The results provide a distinct picture of the foot mechanics unique to each individual. These custom made insoles redistribute body weight efficiently and take pressure off overburdened areas of the feet, which in most cases are the underlying causes of ankle, knee and/or back pain.

Q. How are custom Orthotics made?
Ans.
Casting Technique:Non weight bearing 3D volumetric cast in subtalar neutral

Technique Used to Create/Manufacture Orthotics:  3D volumetric cast is scanned by technicians. Copolymer plastic is formed over positive to create an orthotic for patient’s specific correction and symptomatic needs.

Raw Materials Used:  Engineered copolymer with complete intrinsic memory and predictability postings, made from extra firm nickelplast (58-65 Durometers).

Q. How long does it take to make custom orthotics?
Ans.
After the testing and analysis are complete, the results are sent to a laboratory where the orthotics is made. The entire process usually takes about 5-7 business days.

Q.How long does custom orthotics last?
Ans.
Longevity of the orthotics will vary with each individual. However, most insurance coverage grant one pair of custom orthotics annually.

Q.What type of shoes can I get for custom orthotics?
Ans.
THI offers a wide variety of shoe brands that individuals can choose from to suit their own personal style. Brands include Nike, Lacoste, Birkenstock and more.  THI exclusively uses The Orthotic Group custom orthotics and footwear.

Q. Are custom orthotics covered by insurance?
Ans.
Yes, most insurance companies cover one pair of custom orthotics per year.  Contact your extended hearth care provider to obtain all required information to submit an orthotics claim.

Registered Massage Therapy

Q.Does Massage Therapy hurt?
Ans.
For the most part no. However, like all forms of manual therapy, there can be discomfort. Depending on your unique goals, Massage Therapy can be uncomfortable when attempting to restructure scars and/or adhesion, or extremely euphoric when releasing tension from overworked muscles.

Q. What if I am not in pain, can I still benefit from Massage Therapy?
Ans.
Yes. Many people underestimate the health benefits of simple relaxation. Eventhough there is always something that can be treated, Massage Therapy can also be used as stress relieving and relaxing tool.

Q. Can I still have Massage Therapy if I am pregnant?
Ans.
Yes. THI Massage Therapist are specially trained to treat pregnant individuals. Modifications will be made, for example it is contraindicated to massage the abdomen in the first trimester. However, it is completely safe to receive treatment from our specially trained therapist.

Q. Do I need to be undressed to receive Massage Therapy?
Ans.
No. You dress to your own level of comfort.

Q. Is Massage Therapy covered by insurance plans?
Ans.
Yes. Most extended health insurance cover Massage Therapy.

Wobenzym®

Q. How do I use Wobenzym®
Ans.
Wobenzym should be taken on an empty stomach at least 45 minutes before a meal or at least two hours after a meal. In this way, the enzymes do not digest food proteins, but instead are absorbed into the bloodstream, where they exert their anti-inflammatory effects. For chronic pain relief, three to five tablets three times daily are recommended, according to Antiaging-Systems.com. Five to ten tablets three times daily can be used for more severe chronic pain. Wobenzym can be taken for one to two months or longer for chronic conditions, and one to six weeks for acute conditions. Some people may experience minor digestive disruptions such as diarrhea and excess gas. Smaller doses taken frequently can alleviate this.

Q. Is Wobenzym® a pain reliever?
Ans.
Pain reduction has been well documented in various conditions, including rheumatic joint disease. These analgesic effects are based on the inhibition of inflammation as well as the direct influence on the nociceptors – the nerve cell endings that initiate the sensation of pain. This ability to address both the source of the pain – swelling and inflammation – and to actually relieve the pain by decreasing the noxious stimuli to pain receptors – so that the pain signal is diminished, makes Wobenzym® a very good choice for pain management, especially when it comes to joint pain.

Q. How does this apply to joint pain, which is one of the most common causes of pain?
Ans.
There are different reasons for joint pain – different types of arthritis. Wobenzym® has been shown to be effective in treating all forms of arthritis. A point to remember is the word “arthritis” literally means “joint inflammation”. Yes, pain is often involved, and we could use the term “arthralgia” which means “joint pain”, but the root cause of that pain is inflammation, so our goal is to address the inflammation, which will also relieve the pain. Systemic enzyme support is effective in treating joint pain because of its ability to control the destructive inflammatory processes involved in the various forms of arthritis.

The different forms of arthritis includeosteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, as well as psoriatic arthritis, juvenile chronic arthritis and even gouty arthritis.
Considering patients with osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease:
A 2006 six week phase III, randomized, double blind, parallel group study compared systemic enzyme support with diclofenac the generic name for a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug that is widely used to treat arthritis. Keep in mind that diclofenac can increase the risk of life-threatening heart or circulation problems, including heart attack or stroke – and the longer it is used, the greater the risk. Contrast that to those studies that conclude that Wobenzym® reduced the risk if myocardial infarction. Now, consider this: the 2006 study found systemic enzymes were as effective as diclofenac – and noted that the systemic enzymes were better tolerated.

A 2004 randomized, double-blind, parallel group trial by a different group of researchers came to the same conclusion. Within the six-week observation period, they noted that that systemic enzyme support “can be considered as an effective and safe alternative to NSAIDs such as diclofenac in the treatment of painful episodes of OA of the knee.”

And before that, a 2001 randomized, controlled, single-blind study of seven weeks duration found that systemic enzyme support “is as efficacious and well tolerated as diclofenac” in the management of active osteoarthritis.

A number of studies conclude that Wobenzym® is an effective and safe alternative to NSAIDS in the treatment of painful episodes of osteoarthritis of the knee and hip.

So, we see that systemic enzyme support is as effective as – and in my opinion safer than – nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for the management of osteoarthritis. We see similar results for rheumatoid arthritis and other forms of arthritis.

Q. How is rheumatoid arthritis different that osteoarthritis?
Ans.

As you may know, rheumatoid arthritis (often called RA) is a chronic systemic inflammatory disorder that primarily attacks the joints – although other tissues may be inflamed as well. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, so it is often treated with high dosages of steroid hormones or other powerful drugs like methotrexate, or gold salts, or high dosage NSAIDs.

Because rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease there are increased amounts antibodies, such as Rheumatoid Factor and IgG-RF. This can result in increased circulating immune complexes, which, as we mentioned earlier, are quite pro-inflammatory. We also see increased levels of proinflammatory cytokines such as TFN-alpha (tissue necrosis factor – which, as the name implies, promotes destruction of tissue).As you would expect, there are also increased levels of C-reactive protein.

In contrast to osteoarthritis – which is a degenerative process, rheumatoid arthritis is an actively destructive process.

Q. How does Wobenzym® affect the destructive process in rheumatoid arthritis?
Ans.
The studies show that systemic enzyme support is able to arrest the inflammatory process, and relieve the pain, swelling, and redness of affected joints. A 2001 study reported that in most patients that were “definite signs of rheumatoid arthritis remission appear at the end of the first month” in patients taking 30 Wobenzym tablets a day.

An earlier study revealed had patients taking 7 to 10 Wobenzym® tablets, 3 times a day for 2 to 4 weeks, and then lowered it to 5 tablets 3 times a day and monitored them for two years. Even at that lower dosage apparent clinical remission was achieved in 80% of patients by the 6th month of treatment.

I know we will want to talk more about dosing in another segment, but this is a good time to point out that in aggressive and destructive inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, we typically see results at the therapy dosage of about 30 tablets a day.

In addition to improvement of pain and other symptoms, we see changes in lab results that monitor systemic inflammation. Another study showed that from 15 to 30 tablets of Wobenzym a day resulted in greater reduction of C-reactive protein, circulating immune complexes and pro-inflammatory cytokines, including TNF-alpha.

In fact, in patients treated with Wobenzym, the TNF-alpha levels were 40% – less than half – of the levels seen in untreated patients.

Just as we saw in osteoarthritis, Wobenzym® protects and preserves joint cartilage significantly better than NSAIDs in rheumatoid arthritis50-60.

Q. What other types of arthritis can benefit from using Wobenzym®?
Ans.
Juvenile chronic arthritis is a group of systemic inflammatory disorders affecting children below the age of 16 years. Because of its inflammatory nature it is often compared to the rheumatoid arthritis seen in adults. It is a relatively rare condition (9 – 25 per 100, 000) which affects girls 2 to 3 times more often than boys. A small study including both boys and girls revealed therapeutic benefits with 4 to 5 months. No side effects were observed. Only two children experienced a relapse in the more than 2 years of follow-up exams. The addition of systemic enzyme support improved both articular signs and extra-articular manifestations in the majority of the children with juvenile chronic arthritis and was able to help limit the use of corticosteroids in some children.

Psoriatic arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that affects about 10 to 30% of people who have psoriasis. A small study showed improvement at about 4 months as well. Now what is interesting, is they only used 9 to 15 tablets of Wobenzym® a day, and patients with rheumatoid arthritis in the same study also required 4 months to improve. So again, in aggressive and destructive inflammatory conditions, I always advise a therapeutic dosage of 30 tablets a day.

Gout is a form of arthritis that affects mostly middle-aged men and postmenopausal women. After 3 weeks of adding Wobenzym® to conventional gout therapy, they saw an improvement of 94.1% compared to only 47.3% with only conventional therapy.

So when you look at the research, you could say that Wobenzym is a good therapy for all forms of arthritis including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, as well as psoriatic arthritis, juvenile chronic arthritis and even gouty arthritis.

Q. If someone is already taking some type of medication for their arthritis, can they still take Wobenzym®?
Ans.
I would have to say yes. There have been Wobenzym studies with patients already taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) such as diclofenac sodium, movalis, phelden, or indomethacin. Some of the studies also included patients taking allopurinol or methotrexate in addition to the NSAID.

Learn more at: Rheumatoid Arthritis

These studies show that Wobenzym®N is actually able to improve the effectiveness of other mediations that are not working. This is important because when the routine medications for severe diseases failt to work, the patient more likely to be put at risk by trying to using stronger mediations with more severe side effects. While it is nice to know that Wobenzym® N can make other drugs work better, we should keep our eyes on the other studies that show Wobenzym® N actually working as good as the drugs.

Q. How effective is Wobenzym® for treating tendonitis?
Ans.
In treating tendonitis of the shoulder, Wobenzym® PS significantly decreases both shoulder pain and disability within the patients receiving the formulation.

Traumeel

Q. When should I appy and/or administer Traumeel?
Ans.
Traumeel is an effective treatment in the following settings:

  1. Muscle and joint pain
  2. Injuries such as sprains and dislocations
  3. Bruising

Common treatment areas include the neck, shoulders, back, knees and ankles.

Q. What makes Traumeel so effective in relieving pain caused by muscle and joint injury and inflammation?
Ans.
The formation of Traumeel combines 12 botanical and 2 mineral ingredients at varying concentrations, each is known in homeopathy to provide a beneficial effect on inflammation or the healing process:

  1. Improve Circulation
  2. Pain Relief
  3. Anti-infection
  4. Faster Healing

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