Similar to “TMJ,” oral-facial pain is a term which typically encompasses and wide variety of symptoms and diagnosis. Most often, patient experience pain with chewing and/or clenching the teeth. This can be caused by either the muscles of mastication or irritation of the trigeminal nerve, a very important cranial nerve in the face. 

FOOT & ANKLE PAIN

Proper function of the foot and ankle complex is extremely important, as it is the upright body’s initial contact point with the ground. It is essential for proper balance, ambulation and proprioception. Unfortunately, ankle sprains are a common occurrence amongst active people and can occur with both normal daily motions and higher-level activities. Furthermore, inflammation of the bottom of the feet and toes can produce difficulty with weight bearing activities. Specifically diagnosed conditions, which are commonly treated in physical therapy are: Plantar Fasciitis, Ligament Tears, Ankle Sprains, Achilles Tendonitis, Heel Pain, Shin Splints, and Post-Surgical Conditions.

TREATMENTS

While conditions and diagnosis vary, foot and ankle pain often require the initial reduction of inflammation in those regions. Supportive ankle braces are occasionally recommended for temporary stress relief of the foot and ankle complex. The subsequent goals of physical therapy intervention focus on returning the normal functional mobility. The foot and ankle dictate the function of the more proximal joints of the lower extremity, further illustrating the importance of these joints.

MANUAL THERAPY

Manual therapy is used to decrease pain and improve the mobility of the joints of the foot and ankle. These techniques are essential in restoring range of motion and proper joint mechanics. Manual stretching, joint mobilization and soft tissue relaxation are consistently utilized to help patients reduce pain restore their functional movement.

THERAPEUTIC EXERCISE PROGRAMS

Therapeutic exercise and re-training of the activities of daily living are essential components in the rehabilitation of the foot and ankle. Eliminating repetitive, poor motor patterns and promoting pain free joint function greatly reduces the stress on the ankle and foot. Restoring a balance and weight bearing activities promote normal function without subsequent soreness. 

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