Thursday, December 19, 2013

Prevent snow shoveling related back/shoulder injury.

What a snowy day! 

Hope all of you out there shoveling are paying extra attention to prevent back/shoulder injury from shoveling the heavy snow.

Hire someone with snow blower to do the job will be great! But if you like to treat the snowy day as extra work out time, here are few tips for preventing snow shoveling injury: 

  • Put off the shoveling until afternoon. Many disc injuries occur in the morning when there is increased fluid pressure in the disc.
  • Limber up! Warm up before shoveling. Get those muscles ready for the heavy duty work.
  • Wear a pair of shoes with good tread. No slipping, no fall, no breaking bones!
  • Lifting small amount of snow with frequent trips. Your back will thank you for it.
  • Bend your knees, not your back when lifting.
  • Avoiding twisting.
  • Frequent breaks by standing up straight or bend backwards.

Now, try not to hurt yourself for the next couple days of shoveling. But if you do, come visit us to get the injury taking care of. It could be a quick fix with Kinesio taping. Don't want till it flames up.

Be safe out there!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Incontinence Program

Incontinence Program

Do you have to visit bathroom often? Do you have urine leakage problems? You might suffer from a common condition called urinary incontinence.

What is urinary incontinence (UI)?

Urinary incontinence is the uncontrolled loss of urine.  Most urinary incontinence happens when pelvic floor muscles are too weak or too tense. Childbirth is one of the main causes of UI. Other causes include overweight, neurologic injury, physical problems associated with aging, and history of pelvic surgery. Although women experience UI twice as often as men, it can happen to anyone at any age.

There are three main types of  UI:

  1.  Stress incontinence—Leakage happens with coughing, sneezing, exercising, laughing, and lifting heavy things.
  2. Urge incontinence---You may experience strong sudden urge followed by instance bladder contraction and involuntary loss of urine. This is sometimes called “overactive bladder”
  3.  Functional incontinence—People with this type of incontinence may have physical disability that keeps them from reaching a toilet. For example, a person with dementia may not schedule himself for a trip to the bathroom in time to urinate.

In addition to urinary incontinence, some patients may also experience a variety of complaints:
  •      Chronic unexplained pelvic pain that radiates to the back and groin. Sitting, voiding, or sexual activity in women can aggravate the pain.
  •       Burning during urination.

Incontinence Program

Our incontinence program utilizing a combination of the following non-invasive treatment techniques:

  •     Manual therapy techniques to relax muscle and decrease pain.
  •       Therapeutic exercises to strengthen pelvic floor muscles.
  •       Education or lifestyle/environment modifications.
  •       Electrical stimulation to strengthen very weak muscles.

Incontinence program is highly effective and can often reduce the need for medication and may eliminate the need for surgery.

Call today to keep the leaking under control and save money by decrease the need of using incontinence products.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

What is Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD)?

What is Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD)?

Manual Lymphatic Drainage (also called lymphatic massage, lymph massage, post liposuction massage, MLD massage ) is a gentle manual treatment technique that is based on 4 basic Vodder strokes: the “ stationary circle”, “pump”, “rotary”, and “scoop”. During your MLD treatment, your Certified Lymphedema Therapist will utilize these four basic techniques and other advanced techniques to active your healthy lymph notes and lymph vessels. This will create a “ suction effect”, which allow accumulated fluid to move from one area into another area with normal lymphatic drainage.

The goal of Manual Lymphatic Drainage is to reroute the stagnating fluid around blocked areas into healthy lymph vessels, which drains the lymph fluid into the venous system.

MLD is not to confuse with traditional Massage such as “Swedish” or “therapeutic massage”. In order to achieve muscle relaxation, massage is generally applied with considerably more pressure than MLD. With MLD, the amount of pressure is sometimes described as the pressure applied while stroking a newborn’s head. More pressure in this case does not mean better. Too much pressure could damage lymphatic structures and increase Lymphedema/edema.

Who can benefit from it?


            Post breast cancer surgery is the highest incidence of lymphedem. After the removal of lymph nodes by surgery, or/and the use of radiation therapy, the lymphatic system of arms/breasts has been damaged. It causes abnormal accumulation of water and proteins in subcutaneous tissues. If the condition left untreated, the swelling will continue to progress over time and present enlarged arm or breast. This will also increase the risk of developing shoulder pain, recurrent cellulites or infection, and social withdraw from abnormal looking arms.
             MLD is one of the important components of the treatment and control of Lymphedema. For Lymphedema care, the components of Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT) are: Manual Lymphatic Drainage, Compression Therapy, Decongestive Exercise, and Skin Care.
            Usually a CDT treatment for Lymphedema is about 3-6 weeks depends on what stage of lympehedme is. Generally, for the first 2 weeks, it is ideal to receive MLD 5 times a week.


            Whither you are having cosmetic surgery, total joint surgery, or other kinds of surgery. We encourage you and your physician to include MLD as part of your recovery plan as you will gain lots of benefits from MLD. Plus, through OTLife, Inc, with your physician’s prescription to OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY, MLD service is generally covered by most of insurance company.

            Prior to surgery, at least 1 MLD is recommended 24 hours before the surgery. It drains toxins, excesses fluids, and facilitates the immune system. During surgery, well-decongested tissues also help surgeons to see better and therefore help surgeons to make a clean cut and incision.  MLD prepared the body for the surgery and advanced the healing process.

            MLD can be performed as soon as 24 hours after the surgery to decrease edema, relieve numbness, remove bruising, reduce scarring, increase nutritional supply to the surgical site, and speed up the process of healing.

            Another great benefit of MLD is Pain Relieve. The soothing manual drainage technique provides a stimulus for the “gate-control theory” of Melzack and Wall.
This works best for pain caused by surgery, fibromyalgia, congested headache, and migraine.


            MLD can reduce edema retention in ankles and legs, boost immune system to prevent illness. Relieve pain and decrease stress during pregnancy.

General Contraindications for MLD
  • ·      Acute infection
  • ·      Thrombosis (blood clots)
  • ·      Malignant, untreated cancer

Precautions with MLD

  • ·      Infection
  • ·      Congestive heart failure (CHF)

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


Welcome! OT Life, Inc. is an Occupational Therapy Center.

Our mission is to deliver quality treatment to clients of all ages in the process of their mental and physical recovery, rehabilitation, and health promotion to live a better life with optimal independence and functionality. This includes meeting the physical, psychosocial, emotional, spiritual, and environmental needs of our clients and their families.

Call us if you have Lymphedema!
  •  Can’t find a Certified Lymphedema Therapist around your area?
  •  Do you have chronic edema/swollen on arms and legs?
  •   Did you develop swelling after mastectomy or other cancer treatment?
  •  Do you have recurrent cellulitis and would like to prevent it?  

Call us if you are considering a surgery that will develop edema post surgery!

  • Are you having a total knee, total hip, total joint surgery in the near future?
  •  Are you having plastic surgery in the near future and would like to have speedy recovery?
  • Did you have surgery recently and the edema/swollen just won’t go away?

Call us if you have pain, acute edema after sport injury,
or stiff muscle!

  •  Did you sleep wrong last night and have a stiff neck?
  •  Did you have any sprain/bruise from a sport injury?

Call us if you have senior parents who
had a fall and worry they are going to fall again!

  • Do you want to promote your parents well-being so they can stay in their home independently and safely?
  • Does your parent need walker? Wheelchair? And what kind?
  • What about adapted equipments to help them dress, eat, or cook?

Call us if you need help with home modification for senior parents!

  • Do they need one of those garb bars in the bathroom? And where?
  •  Do they need ramps?
  •  Do they need wider doors?

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Kinesio Tape

Carpal tunnel
Kinesio tape for carpal tunnel syndrome.

Lots of you might wonder what is the colorful tape kept appearing on Olympic games. The tape is called "Kinesio Tape", created by  Dr. Kenzo in 1979. Is it just a fashion statement like most of the reporters stated? Or is it a magic cure?

For me, it is not a fashion statement. And at first, it seems to be a magic cure. I have first hand experience of how the tape instantly help ease my shoulder muscle pain. But after finished my training course with Kinesio Taping Association International , and as an occupational therapist, Kinesio tape is another medical modality/method that I be able to use on my day to day clinical practice. I have many success with using Kinesio tape to facilitate my patients functional gain and decrease pain and edema.

If you are welling to give it a try and find a good therapist, this non invasive method combined with other therapeutic treatment might be the cure for your injury.

What is Kinesio Tape

Kinesio tape is an elastic clothe tape. It has NO medicine on the tape itself. But applied by trained therapist, it can create effective healing affects.

The colors?

It comes with four colors. Although in western world, it does not matter what kind of color you choice. They should all work the same if the application techniques are accurate. However, according to Dr. Kenzo, different color has different chi in it. For example, hot pink is best use for increasing blood flow and generate heat effect. Blue is best use for calm affects. Black is nice to wear for sport events to suite the athletes up for competitions.

Allowing patients/clients to pick the color they like will most likely to increase the chance of having the clients to be compliant with the treatment and to wear the tape for the adequate time frame.

Carpal tunnel
Kinesio tapes cut for carpal tunnel syndrome.

How does it work?

Applied directly on the skin, the breathable adhesive tape plus it's elastic effect will stimulate the receptors bedded in the skin. Depends on how therapist applied the tape, it can stabilize the soft tissue/joints, increase blood flow to decrease pain and increase healing, relax muscle, or facilitate muscle contraction. It can also be used to decrease edema/swelling.

Kinesio tape can be used to treat variety of medical conditions.

  • Orthopedic----total knee, total shoulder, rotator cuff tear..etc.
  • Variety of sports injury.
  • Decrease edema/swelling.
  • For pain management----muscle pain, back pain, knee pain..etc.
  • Repetitive  injury----Carpal tunnel syndrome, gamer's thumb...etc.

In many cases, Kinesio tape helps speed up the healing process and cut down the pain significantly. 

Read to give it a try?

Give us a call at OTLife, Inc. and make an appointment for private occupational therapy. 

We are here to help you achieve your goal and to live the life you love!

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