TUNE UPS STOP BLOW UPS
Previous discussions have touched on the idea that the world around us and the act of living in it imposes stress on our bodies that compounds with time. As a result of this, sometimes we experience pain, discomfort or distress when our body's ability to reverse the strain of living cannot keep up with the ongoing demands of our lives. This attritive force can be reduced with self-care strategies like adequate rest, hydration and nutrition, as well as light exercise and mental health strategies.
Broadly these are good ideas, but as has also been mentioned, sometimes it's not feasible to engage in self-care on an ongoing basis. Rehabilitation and repair are habits that need to be maintained, and like all habits they require investitures of time, energy, resources and knowledge. Sometimes the demands of life necessitate that these elements of personal capital are reallocated to other priorities. It's hard to hit the Tan if you're stuck late in the office working crunch-time to make a deadline. It's hard to hit the gym when the gyms are closed because of the Coronavirus Pandemic. It's hard to relax at home when your housemates are having a blue in the room next door.
The result of this unfortunate reality is that more often than not, the strains of life exceed our body's ability to reverse those strains, and we experience discomfort or injury. Such blow-ups result in lost time and participation in the other domains of life, and while it is paradoxical that the demands of life can make life more difficult to engage in, the fact is that this is a result of the way our world is organised. We are obliged to participate in behaviours to sustain ourselves and our families, and those behaviours subject us to a toll. Sometimes we as individuals can't meaningfully address the toll on our bodies, and that's okay because we have the means to manage it.
In these cases, having a good relationship with a healthcare provider is essential. Allied Health, Physiotherapy in particular, can help decrease the onset of these blow-ups by attending to stress-related factors ahead of time. Proactively engaging with a healthcare provider can help you identify potential risk areas in life and in the way that you do things. It's a stitch-in-time-saves-nine situation: the sooner a potential risk factor is identified then the sooner a solution can be put in place.
It's the same principle behind servicing the engine of your car, having your gas meters checked, or going to the dentist for a checkup. All of those systems; your engine, your utilities, and your teeth, work daily to keep you as a person running, and while one of them failing might not be catastrophic, it is inconvenient and easy to avoid.
You wouldn't drive on creaky brakes. Why walk around on creaky knees?
Seeing your clinician for tune-ups and to touch base has a preventative effect. Not only that, but having an ongoing relationship with a specific provider means that at any time you have someone who not only understands your physical health but you as a person, and you can feel free to contact or come to them for help. Providing an Accessible and Flexible operating model means that patients are Supported throughout their care, and that care can be more Effective as a result. This is even more important in our contemporary society: the increased preference for people under 40 to rent and move around means that they are less likely to form ongoing relationships with healthcare providers. This diminished or absent relationship introduces a potential gap in the delivery of care, which can have flow-on effects given that problems faced by a young person can compound and intensify over the life-course if not dealt with sooner.
Tune-ups and proactive care can prevent blow-ups of symptoms down the line. It's important to consider how you treat your body; what fuel do you put in, how hard do you run the engine, how much work do you do that puts strain on yourself. You wouldn't miss a service, so don't miss your appointments!
See you in clinic.