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Should I Use Heat or Ice on an Orthopedic Injury?

If you’re dealing with an orthopedic injury, you’re likely wondering what the best way of managing the injury is. Ideally, you’ll have an appointment with an orthopedic expert lined up, but you might have a few days before the appointment during which you need to treat the injury. In other cases, you might simply be trying to manage chronic pain. Do you do so with heat or ice, though? It actually depends on the type of injury you’re dealing with.

Using Heat

If you’re dealing with arthritis or any other type of chronic joint pain, heat is the way to go. By applying heat to an area, you’ll increase the blood flow and help loosen up the tissues around the joints. However, it’s important that you do this before you begin any type of activity that you know is going to cause you pain. You don’t want to use heat after the activity, nor should you apply heat to any sudden injury. Only use the heating pad to treat your chronic condition as a pre-emptive solution.

Using Ice

While heat helps with chronic conditions, ice is the solution for acute (sudden) injuries. If you’ve hurt yourself within 48 hours, apply ice to the area where you have swelling. It will help reduce the swelling, stop muscle spasms, and even reduce the pain. You can also use ice for treating any chronic condition, but you want to do so after you’ve worked out or done any other activity. Here, the ice is used to help with inflammation. Never use ice before you’re active.

Tips for Controlling Pain with Heat and Ice

There are a few ways you can use heat and ice to help deal with chronic orthopedic pain. Using heat before an activity and ice afterwards will help minimize the amount of pain you feel while you’re active and during the rest of the day. You do, however, want to avoid using both heat and ice on any area you know has poor circulation or that has a lack of sensation. Also avoid both types of treatment on any area that is infected.

Every person and every injury is unique. If you’re not certain whether to use heat, ice, or neither, contact the experts at Maximum Orthopedics to discuss your specific injury and treatment plan.

  • Posted on: Apr 30 2019
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Temporary vs Permanent Disability Benefits

If you’ve been injured in an auto accident, on the job accident, or other type of injury that has left you unable to work for months, years, or for the rest of your life, you need to seek out disability benefits. These benefits will allow you to maintain your current state of living while you deal with medical bills, physical therapy, and adjusting to your new way of living. Before you begin the process of applying for benefits, though, you need to understand the differences between temporary and permanent disability so you know which one to pursue.

Temporary Disability

Temporary disability, as the name suggests, is designed to temporarily help you cover your bills and medical costs until you can return to work. You will likely be awarded temporary disability if you will eventually fully recover and be able to return to work. It’s meant to help you remain financially stable in the short term. It can cover injuries such as broken bones or illnesses such as severe cases of the flu. Anything that makes it impossible to do your job or to handle routine tasks such as walking or preparing meals can make you eligible for temporary disability.

Note that a number of insurance companies and even state governments don’t offer this type of disability. Even those that do will have a maximum amount of time you can take advantage of temporary disability benefits.

Permanent Disability

If, on the other hand, you have been injured to the point that you will be permanently impaired, you can apply for permanent disability. This type of disability is designed to provide you with financial assistance for the rest of your life. This type of long-term disability is only awarded if medical experts have determined that you will not recover completely and will always have a disability. Losing a limb, for example, could qualify for you for permanent disability if it means you cannot do the job you’ve been trained to do. In addition to being injured, it’s also possible to be born with a qualifying disability such as blindness.

Determining which type of disability is right for you often requires a medical specialist. The experts at Maximum Orthopedics can help you apply for the correct type of disability.

  • Posted on: Apr 15 2019
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Why It’s Important to Seek Medical Assistance After an Auto Accident

Some auto accidents are so severe and scary that you don’t really have a choice regarding medication attention—you may need help just getting out of your vehicle. But other auto accidents aren’t as bad. You might have a few bumps and bruises, but overall, you don’t feel like you’ve had any injuries bad enough for medical attention, so you wave off the emergency services or decide not to go to your doctor. Unfortunately, this can be a major mistake. There are several reasons why it’s important to seek medical assistance after any auto accident.

You May Be Hurt More Seriously than You Realize

Whiplash and other injuries can take hours, if not days, to cause you pain. When you’re in shock from a car crash and your adrenaline is going, your body dulls the pain. Later, though, you may realize just how badly you were injured. If you don’t seek medical attention right after the accident, it may be difficult to conclusively show that the crash is the cause of your injuries. This is especially true if you wait several days.

The earlier you’re examined, the better, because it may be possible to deal with your injuries while they are still mild. If you go days or even weeks before you see a doctor, you may have caused additional damage to your body, making what was a fairly minor injury much worse.

The Medical Report Helps Your Court Case

If you’re suing for personal injury from an auto accident, having a medical report from that same day can greatly help. It shows that you recognized your injuries were severe and that you sought medical assistance right away. This medical report can also backup any injuries or pain that develop later. If you don’t have a medical report, the defendant in the case may be able to show that your injuries weren’t connected to the accident.

Help Is Available—Make Use of It

If emergency services were called to the scene, there’s no reason not to let them at least give you a quick check-over to make sure you’re not injured worse than you thought. They’re already there, so let them do their job. Even if you don’t go to the ER, it also doesn’t hurt to make an appointment with your doctor after the accident. It’s always a good idea to be cautious after an accident. Even a minor fender bender can result in serious whiplash. Contact Maximum Orthopedics after any car accident to ensure you truly aren’t hurt too badly.

  • Posted on: Mar 26 2019
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Is My Injury Severe Enough to File Worker’s Comp?

If you’ve been injured on the job, but your injury doesn’t seem major, you may wonder if it’s worth going through the work to file a worker’s compensation claim. You may get treatment and not even need to take time off work. However, there’s always the case that you’ve injured yourself worse than what you realize. If you have been injured, but it doesn’t seem too severe, there are still some steps you need to take to determine if you need to file for worker’s comp.

Will You Be Off Work at All?

If you do need to take some time off work, it’s likely that you do need to file a worker’s comp claim. If you’ll only be off for the afternoon or for a day or two, your injury will likely be ruled too minor. However, if you are off work for more than that, you may want to consider worker’s comp, especially if it will take more than a week for you to recover.

How Extensive Are Your Injuries?

If you can take care of your injury with a standard first-aid kit, it’s not enough to file a worker’s comp case. Small cuts, scrapes, and bruises are considered too minor. Anything that requires an ambulance or a visit to the emergency room, however, is likely going to be severe enough to qualify for worker’s comp.

Do You Have Recurring Injuries or Pain?

If you have one headache due to being exposed to something at work, it’s likely not something worker’s comp will cover. However, if you’re in a work environment where you are constantly exposed to something that gives you headaches, it can be considered a hazard and is most likely covered by worker’s comp. So even if your injury doesn’t seem severe, if it’s recurring, you may still have a case. Issues that get worse over time can also qualify for worker’s comp. For example, your carpal tunnel syndrome may continue to get worse over time until it needs treatment.

Seek an Expert’s Opinion

While your thoughts on your injury are important, you’re most likely not a trained medical expert. What seems fine to you may actually be a sign of severe damage or injury. That’s why it’s important to visit Maximum Orthopedics when you’ve been injured at work. We will evaluate your injuries and help you determine if you should file a worker’s comp claim.

  • Posted on: Mar 1 2019
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Managing Your Pain Without Surgery

No one wants to deal with pain, especially not long-term chronic pain. But sometimes it may seem like the options—drugs or surgery—simply aren’t any better. Who wants to take medications for the rest of their life, especially if those medications have horrible side effects? Surgery can also be risky. Fortunately, there are some pain management techniques that do not require either.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy can help you stretch and relax your muscles, reducing pain and giving you greater mobility. Physical therapy is generally directed by a professional, at least at first, so that you what exercises to do and how often to do them. This is necessary because if you don’t perform the exercises just right, you may hurt yourself further. Some physical therapy may require weights or other additional equipment or may be done in the water.

Massage

Massaging injured muscles can also help relieve the pain and improve your range of motion. There are various types of massage that can help with different pain. Deep tissue massage may be needed for severe pain, while more gentle options may help others. According to studies, massage can actually help decrease your pain for months.

Alternating Hot and Cold Treatment

Another type of treatment you may make use of is to alternate hot and cold options. This involved using a heating pad to help with inflammation and then an ice pack to reduce swelling. Sometimes you alternate heat and cold, while other times, one or the other may be more beneficial. It all depends on the type of pain you’re dealing with.

Acupuncture

Another option is to try acupuncture. This traditional Chinese treatment can actually be very helpful when dealing with chronic pain. While the idea of having small needles stuck in your body may sound like it would cause more pain than it would cure, acupuncture is surprisingly effective.

A Combination of Treatments

Often, what really works for a patient is a combination of different treatments. Physical therapy when combined with cold treatment, for example, may be the key to managing your pain. For others, it may be massage and hot treatment. It often depends on your specific type of pain, where that pain is located, and its underlying cause.

Need help managing pain without surgery or medication? Contact Maximum Orthopedics today.

  • Posted on: Feb 26 2019
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Common Orthopedic Surgeries

There are a number of different types of orthopedic surgeries you can have. Many of these procedures are actually very common and often have few side effects. If you’re scheduled for an orthopedic procedure, it may help calm you to know if you’re undergoing one of the most common types of orthopedic surgeries. Here are some of these surgeries.

Joint Replacement

Many people undergo knee replacement surgery, a type of joint replacement. These surgeries are very common and include knee and hip replacement. Once complete, you will need to see your doctor regularly for several months just to make certain that the implant is successful and that there are no issues with it. In most cases, patients regain a great amount of mobility that they had lost and are able to return to living a pain-free life.

If your joint replacement does have complications, your orthopedic surgeon may need to do a revision joint procedure. This means that they remove the defective implant and put in a new one. If you have an older implant, you may also need a revision joint procedure at some point.

Debridement

A debridement is a type of orthopedic surgery that involves removing dead tissue. Sometimes, this much be done before the body can start to heal correctly. This process simply removes the dead tissue. In some cases, some bone also must be removed.

Fusion

When your body is in need of more stability or if you have damage done to your spine or to specific bones, a fusion may be necessary. The surgeon will fuse together the vertebrae in your spine or a bone graft to the fractured bones in order to help them heal and make them stronger. This isn’t always necessary with back or bone injuries, but it is often done to provide more stability and improve healing times.

Soft Tissue Procedures

If you have torn tendons or ligaments, your orthopedic surgeon may need to do surgery to repair them. This common surgery is often necessary before you can start healing.

Carpal Tunnel

Another very common orthopedic surgery is done on those who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome. This surgery helps release the pressure and return a full range of motion to the wrists and hands.

There are a number of other orthopedic surgeries that are very common. If you’re in need of one of these procedures, the experts at Maximum Orthopedics are here to help. Contact us today for more information.

  • Posted on: Feb 1 2019
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Why Managing Your Pain on Your Own Isn’t Always the Best Idea

If you’re dealing with any sort of pain, you may decide to try to manage it yourself. You may not want to deal with doctors, or you may believe you’ll have to pay a lot of money for surgery or some other expensive treatment. Fortunately, pain management can be quite affordable. There are also a number of reasons why managing your pain on your own isn’t a great idea. Here are a few of these reasons.

It’s Not Effective

While you understand where your pain is and how severe it is, you may not understand how to best treat it. Experts in pain management have spent years studying the body and how to relief pain. They keep up with the current research and techniques, too. They will know which treatments will work the best for your type of pain, while you may simply be taking some over-the-counter medications and hoping for the best.

There could also be something much more effective out there that you don’t know about. The method you’re using to manage your pain may only make it a little more tolerable. There could be a technique available that would make your pain vanish or greatly reduce it.

You Could Make Your Pain Worse

Because you may not fully understand how the body works, it’s possible that what you’re doing could actually make your pain worse. Yes, you may have found an exercise, stretch, or other activity that seems to lessen the pain temporarily, but long-term, you could be making the injury worse or hurting another part of the body.

There Could be a Minor Procedure that Will Help

While you should always be hesitant to undergo surgery and make sure you understand all of the outcomes of any procedure, sometimes it truly does help. There could be a minor orthopedic surgery option that could completely remove your pain or improve your range of motion. Without talking to an orthopedic surgeon, you might never learn about such an option.

That’s why it’s a good idea to schedule a consultation with the doctors at Maximum Orthopedics. They will discuss your particular pain needs and help you find the best solution. It could be what you’re already doing, but there’s also a very good chance that there’s a better option for you.

  • Posted on: Jan 30 2019
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Dealing with Arthritis Pain

Dealing with arthritis pain may seem like an uphill battle. Many of the standard pain management techniques often don’t help that much with arthritis because it’s a different type of pain. It’s recurring, and it’s not caused by an injury you can treat with surgery or that you will recover from. Instead, you have to work with experts in orthopedics in order to learn how to avoid arthritis flare-ups and manage the pain as best as possible.

Don’t Rely on Medication

Many people will say that they manage their arthritis pain simply by taking an over-the-counter medication that is labeled as specially formulated for arthritis. These medications can certainly help, but taking them every day is not the best idea. Many do have side effects that occur if you take them too often. Some can cause liver damage, while others may affect your stomach. Even those that don’t have major side effects will become less effective over time. Instead of relying on medication, look at other options.

Look at What Orthopedics Offers

Orthopedic pain management is specifically designed to decrease pain in the musculoskeletal system. This includes pain in the muscles and joints. Arthritis pain is caused by inflammation and swelling in the joints, making it difficult and painful to bend and move. By using orthopedic pain management, you can avoid taking medications.

Your orthopedic course of treatment needs to be customized for your needs. For example, if you have horrible arthritis pain in your knees, part of your treatment may include working to lose some weight. This will help relieve the amount of stress your knee joints are under. You may also work on specific exercises that help improve your joint function and tone your muscles to help provide more support for your body.

Another type of orthopedic solution that can help with the pain from arthritis and can increase mobility involves using heat. Heat can help relax the body, making it easier for joints to move. Electrical stimulation has also been shown to be effective in treating arthritis. If you suffer from arthritis and want to explore alternative options to taking medication every day, contact Maximum Orthopedics to discuss your pain and talk about how you can manage it more effectively.

  • Posted on: Jan 15 2019
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Temporary Vs. Permanent Disability

If you’ve been injured on the job, you may find yourself unable to work. In some cases, this may be a temporary issue. In other cases, however, you may find yourself permanently disabled. Physical therapy and surgery may be able to help you overcome temporary health issues, but if you’re unable to return to your job, you’re going to need some sort of income. That’s where disability payments come in. It’s important you understand the differences between temporary and permanent disability and when each comes into play.

Temporary Disability

Temporary disability provides you with income if you’re injured and unable to work for a short amount of time (often a year or less). New York is one of only five states that offers temporary disability insurance through employers. This insurance pays out some or all of your salary if you’re injured – the actual amount often depends on your policy. It’s important to note that Social Security doesn’t offer any sort of temporary disability.

In addition to temporary disability offered via your employer in New York, you can often purchase disability policies through a number of private insurance companies. These policies may only provide payments for a shorter period of time, and they may not pay out nearly as much.

Permanent Disability

Becoming permanently disabled allows you to receive payments from Social Security. However, it takes more work and more time to be declared permanently disabled. You will need a doctor or other medical professionals to testify that you are no longer capable of doing the work you once did. You will also need to show that you cannot simply learn a new skill and get a job in another field. This process is often frustrating, but it’s also often necessary for those who are simply unable to work again in any field.

This is a very basic outline of temporary and permanent disability. There are many other factors that can play a part in disability, including worker’s compensation benefits if you were injured while at work. Determining how to approach your disability claim can be very confusing. That’s where Maximum Orthopedics can help. Contact them today to discuss your situation.

  • Posted on: Dec 31 2018
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Workers’ Comp Basics for New York

Dealing with workers’ comp can seem like a stressful and scary ordeal. While it’s not always the easiest process, workers’ comp shouldn’t be horrible, either. One of the biggest reasons the process often seems long and difficult is because most people haven’t gone through a workers’ comp claim before. By understanding the basics of the system, you’ll be better prepared to deal with workers’ comp if it comes up.

Your Employer Has Workers’ Comp Insurance

New York requires any business that has at least one employee to carry workers’ comp insurance. There are a few exemptions, including religious orders and those who do casual work, but almost all companies do have workers’ comp, and you can take advantage of it. If you do work for a company that is exempt and has chosen not to offer workers’ comp insurance, you can purchase it through the New York Insurance Department or look into purchase insurance yourself.

What Does Workers’ Comp Offer?

If you have been injured on the job, workers’ comp is designed to provide you and your family with income during the period you’re unable to work. This may only be a week or two in some cases, but it other cases, you may be permanently disabled and unable to work ever again. Workers’ comp will provide income for both of these extremes and more.

If you have been injured on the job in New York, workers’ comp offers temporary and permanent total disability as well as permanent partial disability. In most cases, you’ll receive two-thirds of your average weekly salary if you are disabled. In some cases, these payments will run out at a certain point, while in other cases, you may receive funds for the rest of your life.

You Must Act Quickly

In New York, the law states that you must inform your employer in writing that you have been injured while on the job within 30 days. You also have to submit a claim form to the State Workers’ Compensation Board within two years and see a doctor within two days.

There are many different regulations regarding workers’ comp in New York, which is why you need to seek the advice of an expert as soon as you’ve been injured. The professionals at Maximum Orthopedics have years of experience with these cases and can assist you in making a claim.

  • Posted on: Dec 15 2018
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Should I Use Heat or Ice on an Orthopedic Injury?

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