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Information provided on this site is meant to complement and not replace any advice or information from a health professional.
The intended mission of the site is to help people dealing with total knee replacements and other physicalities realize they are not alone.

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How To Stay Healthy During Hot Summer Days

Hi everyone. Summer season in the USA is winding down and with that comes a ton of outdoor events. Combine those fun-filled events with warmer/hotter temperatures and you can easily overdo it without realizing it. You need to learn how to be healthy during hot summer days. This is key to avoiding, and/or lowering your risks of heat-related illnesses.

Some of you have contacted me asking about ways to stay healthy in these warmer temps. I have written previously throughout this site about living with the after effects of a fractured C-1. This fracture severed the nerve that sends signals from my body to mind about overdoing it. In other words, I cannot tell when I am overdoing it until I start to get sick..by that time symptoms quickly appear and build upon each other. So….Here are some things I do to ward off emergency/paramedic trips:

* Use the buddy system. There is a reason safety experts across the board suggest people use the buddy system. You watch each other’s back. One of the beginning signs of any heat-related illness is getting flushed. Another person can spot this sign before you can.

* Carry minimal weight around. The more weight you carry around, the more energy your body exerts.

* Use an umbrella. Check with the event staff to see if these sun savers are allowed. A light-colored one will protect better than a dark-colored one. Golf umbrellas are excellent for this purpose.

* Wear light-colored clothes. Light colors reflect the sun. Dark colors attract, or absorb, the sun waves. That seems common sense, but I am regularly surprised how so many people wear black clothes, then complain about the heat. Apparently, this fact is not as well known as I previously believed.

* Use sunscreen. Protecting your skin from the sun’s rays will help keep you cooler. Be sure to use a SPF that suits your individual physiology and needs.

* Drink cold water. This is another common sense solution, but must be mentioned. Get a hold of an insulated container. Fill it with cold water and ice beforehand. Buying cold bottled water on-site can cost a pretty penny.

* Put a frozen ice pack into an insulated cooler. Place your food and beverages on top of it. Place extra ice over the contents.

* Use ice. Rub it over your face, hands, neck, back, and chest. Do this periodically throughout the event/day.

* Use a spritzer. Fill a spritzer bottle full of cold water. Spray yourself throughout the day for an instant cooling.

* Wear a hat. The larger brim, the better. Your hair will also thank you. Sun exposure burns hair very quickly.

* Cover your skin. Exposed skin not only burns easier, but heats up quicker. Protect your skin.

* Wear lightweight fabrics. Gauze is superb. Some companies make action wear clothing that keeps you cool. It costs a little more, but is worth it.

* Women: wear sundresses and/or skirts. Perfect way to do your best to beat the heat.

* Wear sunglasses. Sunglasses with ultraviolet protection keep damaging sun rays from entering your retinas and eyes, in general. Believe it or not, it does help to keep your eyes cool.

* Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of cold water and/or electrolyte-enriched drinks. Drink them even when you are not thirsty. Dehydration can lead to all kinds of emergency sicknesses.

* Wear comfortable footwear. Flip flops are great. Sandals are another popular option, but not everyone can comfortably wear them. Know what is good for you. Remember to put sunscreen on your feet.

* Eat cold food. That’s the purpose of an insulated cooler. Fill it with chilled sandwiches that you make at home. It will save you money and health.

* Wear the proper socks, if needed. Keeping your feet cool is crucial for keeping your body temperatures within a safe range.

Well, that’s about it for now. When I think of more, I will update this article.

Find interesting? Kindly share…

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






TKR Comment Concerns

Hi everyone. I wanted to take a short moment and apologize for poor communication issues lately. For some reason outside of my control, I have not been receiving email notifications of many tkr comment postings to my site.

This has caused a delay in a few areas, as discussed below:

1) Personal response time. I take great pride in knowing that I provide quick feedback to every one of you who takes the time to leave a tkr comment. That is one of the reasons this site is so popular. If I do not receive a notification, it goes without saying that I cannot personally respond to you. Knowing this response is being hindered is completely unacceptable to me.

2) TKR comment approval times. Some of your comments may be posted on my site a week before I receive notification. This is not good comment posting protocal.

3) TKR comment posting times and dates. If I cannot approve your comments, they cannot be published on my site. Hence, your questions and concerns may appear unanswered.

4) Other. Some other tkr comment concerns I may think of after turning off my computer.

Also know that I am diligently working on rectifying this situation as soon as feasibly possible.

Please accept my sincerest apologies for any inconvenience or negativity.

Marie B (aka Booktoots)

Find interesting? Kindly share…

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






Shoe Lifts: Little Known Benefits

Hi my favorite readers! Wearing shoe lifts, whether they are noticeable or not, provides many benefits. It can be easy to focus on the negative, but what’s the point in that?

I previously wrote about being grateful for my 1.5” shoe lift. And..seeing that the post received such positive feedback, I thought I’d talk about it again. Enjoy!

Some may think that wearing shoe lifts is a hindrance. After all, not everyone wears one and the wearer could be on the receiving end of some strange looks. I know, I have worn one for 37 years. Part of my recuperation from my tkr includes adjusting my shoe lifts. So..that is why I have figured out reasons to be grateful for wearing them.

Puddle Conquering. Depending upon the thickness of one’s shoe lift, puddles can easily be walked through. Your shoe will not get wet, unlike your “regular” shoe. This statement applies to shallow streams, also.

Self Defense Tool. If someone starts to give the wearer a hard time, shoe lifts can be used to place a heavy kick to the groin. The extra weight will make for an extra punch.

Convenient Bug Squasher. The extra weight of shoe lifts can provide for an easy elimination of bugs that are otherwise hard to kill (such as immensely oversized cockroaches known as Palmetto bugs….yikes!!). All one needs to do is get a quick “whack!” or stomp in and the little critter will be saved a lingering death. Be sure to apologize to them before the killing process, though. They usually don’t mean any harm.

It Helps Mobility. Of course, the best reason for wearing a shoe lift is the fact that it balances out one’s legs and gait. It makes getting around easier and less painful. There’s nothing funny about this. Just a plain and simple, hard, cold fact. It has helped out tremendously since my total knee replacement.

Hoping this helps others going through the same thing. Do you have similar stories to share? Feel free to post your comments….

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Find interesting? Kindly share…







TKR Forums

Hi everyone. After doing research into knee replacement recuperation, I came upon a few new forums discussing various aspects. It seems that forums talking about knee replacement, knee injuries, knee surgeries and other joint ailments are on the rise due to so many of us undergoing various procedures. Part of the reason is the aging of the baby boomer populations. Increasing numbers of our age group are needing this surgery. We’re special..:)

So…I wanted to take a moment and thank everyone for your support and input into making this a beneficial and successful site that offers a communication platform for all to participate in. It wouldn’t be possible without all of your help. 🙂

Keep improving with every passing day!

Find interesting? Kindly share…

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






Another TKR Flexibility Exercise Using an Exercise Bike

Hi everyone. Many of you have contacted me recently wondering about using an exercise bike for tkr (total knee replacement) rehab. This equipment played a crucial role in my tkr recuperation. Even 8 years post-tkr, I still use it to work on my knee’s flexibility. Here is more insight…

Get on a stationary bike. Of course, make sure everything is set to your personal preferences. Preventing injury always needs to be a key concern of anyone, any time. It is far to easy to cause more damage than good by having equipment set up incorrectly.

Instead of pedaling forward (which is hard enough when recuperating from a tkr), pedal backwards. And…hold on tight. This is easier said than done. When I first did it, the pain and difficulty were immense. With diligent practice, they both decreased over time. It is an excellent way to work on the hamstring muscles.

What also works for me is starting my exercise regime by pedaling forward. I do that until my tkr is not so stiff. This usually lasts a couple of minutes. Then, I pedal backwards. The movement is by no means fluid. Whatever it takes. I do the backwards gig for a bit and then return to my forward pedaling.

I also put in some stretching exercises using the pedals to stretch my outer tkr knee. Ouch…works, though.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing. Find interesting? Kindly share…

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Stop Complaining & Start Working

Hi everyone. Our mental attitude affects everything. I know that’s a common sense statement, but it makes for a great opening line. Many people, with or without realizing it, are in a permanent state of complaining. Everything is fatalistic, not worth trying, and simply worthless. Complaining is constant on every level, from the conscious to subconscious. These individuals enjoy being around other complainers. Do you fall into this mindset?

Everyone complains at some time or another. However, half of the population loves complaining so much that it becomes ingrained in their personalities. Instead of viewing setbacks as hidden opportunities, these people see everything in black. Negative thoughts and language take over.

Cases in point:

Instead of doing physical therapy exercises that can improve flexibility and comfort, the person chooses to focus on the immediate pain level. “Oh, I don’t do those exercises. They hurt too much. What’s the point?” are the thoughts that are both verbalized and internalized. So..the person has a reason for living in continual pain, discomfort, and “sympathy mode”. It draws attention to them. The individual believes those exercises won’t work, and by golly, they won’t. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Some people are lucky enough to have walking aids that increase motoring speed and skill. Please remember..not everyone can afford these items or have access to them. That is why I say some are lucky to have the items. Musculoskeletal pain levels likely diminish when these aids are used. But are they? No, complainers choose to focus on the drawbacks of using these items.

Focusing on the drawbacks fuels the fire that hinders pedestrian and motorized traffic. Instead of using the aids to make mobilizing easier an attitude of “Let them wait. They don’t know what I’m going through,” is adopted by the individual. “That walker is too difficult to fold up. It gets in the way, etc.” So, a cane is used that completely alters the individual’s body alignment. It exacerbates the pain and discomfort. This is but one example.

Kindly take some time to notice your everyday attitude. Is it one of viewing life as a creative “can do” challenge or one of viewing life as a horrible existence? The decision is yours.

Find interesting? Kindly share with others..

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






Gratitude Works Wonders

Hello everyone. Any one who has been through a total knee replacement knows that it takes a lot of recuperation and hard work. (That’s an understatement!) Sometimes it just doesn’t seem like it’s going to get any better. I regularly hear from readers who express this. You are not alone. I have a story I wanted to share about this.

While going through physical therapy, I was put on the stationary exercise bike. This was very difficult, caused a lot of pain. I downright dreaded it and every moment involved. The experience was two-fold, though. I dreaded it since I knew what a hard time I had with it. I could not make a total revolution without experiencing immense pain and discomfort. On the other hand, I wanted to do it since I knew how helpful it was for my recuperation process.

One day, as I was bicycling, I was griping up a storm. Life was miserable, I was in pain, and I hated that damn machine. Gripe, gripe, gripe. Then, I turned and looked at the lady laying next to me on the workout mat… She had no legs. Both of her legs were amputated at the knee.

To say I felt awful, is an understatement. How could I possibly complain about my one knee when someone else has no legs? Wow… Reality hit hard that day. It’s strange how the universe works. Suddenly, things were put into perspective.

This isn’t to say that I don’t complain (who? Me?) about the tkr recuperation process still – I just think more often about how much worse it could be.

So, be grateful for what you have every day. Yes, I know, sometimes it is easier said than done. However – Gratitude works wonders. 🙂

Find interesting? Kindly share…Thanks!

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






Happy July 4th, 2016 Independence Day

Wishing everyone a joyous, festive and safe Independence Day, July 4th weekend. Happy Independence Day to all my U.S. readers. For my Canadian readers, happy belated Canada Day. 🙂 Enjoy the barbeques, good food, fellowship, and…if you have a chance…watch the the traditional holiday favorite movie starring James Cagney.

Titled “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, Cagney won his only Academy Award for portraying George M. Cohan. Cohan was the first nonmilitary person to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his lifetime musical achievements. It’s the best!

July4

July4th

Always remember to be grateful for our freedoms, that we sometimes take for granted. Again, Happy July 4th, Independence Day 2016.

Pay respect to the power of fireworks by placing safety first when using or watching them.

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






TKR Exercise Is Critical

Hi everyone! One of my readers sent me this article about the importance of exercising after a total knee replacement. I thought it was interesting and wanted to share it again. The powerful data never grows old…

Exercise after knee replacement critical..
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2009-02/uod-eak020209.php

It may be uncomfortable at first, but doing exercises to strengthen your quadriceps after you’ve had knee replacement surgery due to osteoarthritis is critical to your recovery. In fact, it can boost the function of your new knee to nearly that of a healthy adult your age.

That’s the finding of a University of Delaware study published in the February issue of Arthritis Care & Research.

The authors include Lynn Snyder-Mackler, Alumni Distinguished Professor of Physical Therapy at the University of Delaware, Stephanie Petterson, clinical faculty at Columbia University, Ryan Mizner, an assistant professor at Eastern Washington University, Jennifer Stevens, an assistant professor at the University of Colorado at Denver, and Drs. Leo Raisis, Alex Bodenstab, and William Newcomb of First State Orthopaedics in Newark, Delaware.

“It sounds logical that exercises to strengthen your knee should be a component of your post-operative physical therapy after a total knee replacement, but it’s not the convention at all,” says Snyder-Mackler.

“There are all of these old wives’ tales that strength training is a detriment to the patient and that the new knee should be treated delicately,” Snyder-Mackler notes. “Our study demonstrates that intensive strength exercise as outpatient therapy is critical to begin three to four weeks after surgery.”

Nearly 500,000 knee replacements, also known as total knee arthroplasties, are performed every year in the United States to treat severe knee osteoarthritis, the loss of the cushiony cartilage padding the knee. The joint disease leaves its sufferers with persistent pain and limited function, resulting in an overall diminished quality of life.

While knee replacement alleviates the pain of osteoarthritis and improves function, patients exhibit impaired quadriceps strength and function for such activities as walking and climbing stairs, and the levels remain below those of healthy people of the same age.

In a randomized controlled trial at the University of Delaware’s Physical Therapy Clinic conducted between 2000 and 2005, 200 patients who had undergone knee replacements were given six weeks of progressive strength training two or three times a week starting four weeks after surgery. Half of the group also received neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES).

Their function was compared to that of 41 patients who received conventional rehabilitation and home physical therapy. Quadriceps strength, knee range of motion, and gait were measured in such tests as timed up and go, stair climbing and a six-minute walk.

The group in the progressive strength-training program showed significant improvement in quadriceps strength and functional performance. They also demonstrated substantially greater quadriceps strength and functional performance after 12 months than the group that underwent conventional rehabilitation.

“This study clearly demonstrates the importance of surgeons encouraging their patients to be compliant with progressive quadriceps strengthening during their rehabilitation to enhance their clinical improvement and function post-total knee replacement,” notes Dr. Leo Raisis, a total joint surgeon and adjunct associate professor at the University of Delaware.

“Why undergo a $25,000 elective surgery and then not do as much as you can to get the most out of it and improve your quality of life?” Snyder-Mackler says. “Older people are incredibly motivated—they hurt after the surgery and they want to be better. They need to do this.”

Hope this helps others going through the same thing. Remember, you are not alone. Check back here often for further insight to help your tkr recuperation process.

Find interesting? Kindly share…Thanks!

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






7 Ways to Speed Up Your Knee Replacement Recuperation

Hi my favorite readers. I have had quite a few readers approach me recently and inquire about ways to make the tkr recuperation easier. There is no simple approach, unfortunately. Sharing one of my more popular posts regarding this topic may help you. Good luck!

Having a total knee replacement surgery is only part of the process. Always remember that. How you deal with the recuperation to actually use your new knee is another part. It, actually, is the hardest part. Only you can determine the extent of your success.

  • Here are some ways I have noticed an improvement in my total knee replacement recuperation. My knee is getting better every day because of them. They may work for you. Here goes…

    * Every hour on the hour, get up and walk around. Even if it is for only a couple of minutes. You need to stand up and get your blood flowing. Your level of recuperation (and physical therapist) will determine whether you use a walking aide or not.

  • *Do as much as you can for yourself. Lower your reliance on others when you can easily do it yourself. You will only be hurting yourself.
  • *Know that it will be painful. You cannot get around having pain after a major surgery. Bummer.

    *Take a pain med prior to your exercise. I find that ½ hour beforehand works best for me. This will help make your exercise regimen go easier. Of course, your pain meds will decrease as time goes on and your level of recuperation increases. The sooner the better, I say.

    *Set a goal for your knee flexibility. Find a ‘hash mark’ on the floor that you want to stretch your foot to. Lift your leg farther than an earlier attempt. Your physical therapist can help with this.

    *Keep icing. After every exercise bout, ice your knee area. The best is a simple ice pack. Or, frozen peas and carrots work well.:)

    *Elevate. Keep your leg elevated when not exercising. This helps the healing.

    Recuperating from a total knee replacement takes work, time and effort. Stay with it and you will only benefit. Remember to check back here often to realize that you are not alone.

    Find interesting? Kindly share…

    AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.