Be Proud Of Your Scars

Hi everyone. How do you view scars? A few of you have asked me how do I deal with my tkr scar? The scar left behind is quite large and very noticeable. Well, your viewpoint determines whether scars are a badge of honor or an embarrassment. I say you need to be proud of your scars. Here’s more…

NOTE: It was wonderful to see what Princess Eugenia did about showing her scoliosis scar. Apparently, she had her wedding dress designer make it a point to display her scar, not hide it. She wanted to show others that scars are nothing to be ashamed of. Good for her…:) October 2018.

Obviously, scars can be the result of quite a few things. This article talks about the physical appearance of scars upon one’s body. These may have occurred due to surgeries, medical procedures, life’s experiences, or other such occurrences.

According to the cosmetic industry, scars are considered yet another area of imperfection. This industry is attempting to lead us to believe that scars are something to be ashamed of. Scars are being promoted as taking away from our natural beauty, according to this powerful, multi-billion dollar industry.

Turn on the television, visit social media sites, or pick up a magazine and you will find ads about scar-eliminating products. The ad will likely show a person explaining the dramatic/negative effects a 1/4-1/2″ scar has upon them. The totally debilitating scar is the main concern of one’s existence, according to this ad. The ads can be very convincing. I say “spare me”.

Or, go to the store and peruse the shelves filled with products claiming cosmetic improvements to one’s appearance. It’s mind-boggling. It’s bad enough that the cosmetic field has us convinced that our natural state is improper, but to try to convince us that scars are a sign of deficiency? Come on.

My viewpoint? Scars are a sign that one has encountered a battle and lived to talk about it. My total knee replacement scar is about 10″ long. Yours is probably about the same.

My philosophy? Add it to the collection. The outside of my thigh has another 10″ scar that is 40 years old. And, there are others. They all have a story behind them. 🙂

Scars are not something to be ashamed of, or hidden from view. Weather permitting, I wear shorts and my scars show. If someone doesn’t like seeing them, they don’t have to look.

Moral of story:
Be proud of your scars and treat them like a trophy. Show them off when you can. Talk about them in a comfortable manner with others. Share the experience behind them. Not everyone can regale your tales like you can. 🙂

When you notice someone staring at your scar (and it will happen), wait for them to say something. Over the years, my experience shows most will not. Those who do, do so out of true concern. Just answer questions honestly. You have nothing to be embarrassed about.

Be free to say to whoever will listen… “Want to see my scar?” Do it with enthusiasm and proudness. Then, show it off while gazing fondly at it. (You may get some strange looks when you do this, though. 🙂 )

Some scars are the result of carelessness or errors on one’s part. An example of this is using power tools incorrectly, or improper use of fireworks. Now, I would think those scars would need a little more story embellishment.

Scars are a sign of survival. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. The only alternative to survival is death. You choose.

End of my “soap opera speech” for the day. Hope this helps others going through the same thing. 🙂

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.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.


Scoliosis and a Total Knee Replacement

Hi everyone. Due to numerous requests, I am reprinting this article about living with scoliosis and a total knee replacement. My total knee replacement is due to fracturing my femur 40+ years ago in an auto accident. During recuperation, the femur was misaligned and shortened, resulting in a leg length discrepancy and scoliosis. Hopefully, this insight can help you..

After having fractured my femur (the largest bone in the body), my gait was altered. In turn, this caused my spinal column to become malformed -“S”shaped. I developed scoliosis, curvature of the spine. Mine is happening from my waist down, the lower spine.

The scoliosis curved by spine so I now need a 2” shoe lift. Luckily, my spine condition has not caused me any severe problems – as I have heard other people experiencing.

A great exercise for dealing with scoliosis, for me, is to stretch from my waist to toe. (Like touching my toes, only I touch the ground with my wrists).

Also, another great exercise involves getting in the push up position and then arching my back like a cat and then reversing ..or “curving” it while looking up.

According to yoga practitioners, this yoga maneuver is titled the cat pose. Like many of you, probably, I was doing this stretch way before yoga became “the current craze”. It’s always interesting to see how exercises take on new forms and practices. 🙂

I also like to lay on a flat surface and bring my knees to my chest. This stretches my lower back.

As long as I have had scoliosis, it is not something that has ever caused me extreme discomfort. I have been blessed in that matter. Perhaps it’s because I eat healthy, wear my shoe lift, exercise regularly, am medication-free, and take care of my health. Whatever the reason, I am truly grateful.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing. Of course, these exercises may not work for you. Always be safe and consult with your medical care provider before starting any new exercise.

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.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through similar situations.

Find interesting? Kindly share…Thanks!






Breathing Is A Gift: Treasure It

Hi everyone. Do you every think that breathing is a gift? It is so easy to take it for granted when all is going well. Here is a real-life story to provide more insight into why you need to treasure it.

As many of you already know, I fractured my C-1 (first cervical vertebrae) in 1975. One of the after effects is breathing difficulties. Shortness of breath is a daily occurrence for me ever since. There are many trigger points that enhance its impact.

Improper pillow. You probably see commercials about the importance of having a comfortable pillow. Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to buy a good-fitting, comfortable pillow? I have. The process is termed..PITA. If you don’t know what that stands for, just …as the saying goes…GOOGLE it.

Pillows can seem so worthwhile in the market, while feeling them up. It’s only when getting home and actually using them that the truth comes out. Either too full, too flat, too fluffy, or too cumbersome.

The wrong pillow affects my breathing. It may affect yours, as well. This occurs when the vertebrae are misaligned. Pain shoots everywhere from my head to my toes. (Especially my neck.) A misaligned neck makes breathing very difficult. It hinders sleeping, also. Not good….

There are many nights when sleeping on folded towels is the solution. Or, simply laying flat. Flatness provides instantaneous relief. Nice…

Mattress. A good mattress makes all the difference, also. Pillow-top versions do not feign well with spinal alignment. Some consider these versions “romantic”, not me. Give me a firm mattress any day and twice on Sunday.

Regularly rotating and turning the mattress will help even out mattress wear-and-tear. A mattress that needs rotating will cause spinal misalignment – hence, shortness of breath.

Poor posture. This is common sense, but must be mentioned. The older I have gotten, the more I realize not everyone has common sense. Shortness of breath occurs more often when my neck is misaligned.

Poor diet. After 40+ years of living with daily shortness of breath, I know for a fact that processed foods, in particular, hinder my breathing. It may be the preservatives, excess sugar/fat/additives, or handling. Whatever it is, I minimize my usage of these “foods”.

Stress. Isn’t stress the cause of many health problems? You bet it is. Whatever shape or form it takes, excess stress hinders breathing. I would think we all share that dilemma. It’s only when realizing it that we can change it. Sometimes it is much easier said than done.

OK…I think that’s enough for now. You may be wondering why I choose to write about breathing on a blog that mainly discusses total knee replacement concerns. It is because I have been experiencing increased bouts of shortness of breath lately. I blame it on the pillow. It also happened during my tkr recuperation.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

MORAL OF STORY: Never take your breathing for granted. There are those who would give almost anything for the delight of effortless breathing. Breathing is a gift…Treasure it.

Find interesting? Kindly share it….

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.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

How to Get the Most Out of Physical Therapy After Knee Replacement Surgery

Hi everyone. With so much information available knowadays about getting the most out of your total knee replacement, I thought it would be worthwhile to share a guest post written by the experts at The Joint Replacement Therapists. I am certain this insight about physical therapy after knee replacement surgery is the key to your success. Enjoy…
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Physical therapy is an integral part to any individual’s knee replacement recovery. There are thousands of physical therapists and physical therapy clinics throughout the country, and the majority of physical therapists are professional, knowledgeable, and caring.

Your therapists will provide you with all the information and resources you require to have a successful knee replacement. What you get out of your rehab after surgery will be a direct reflection of what you put into it.

With that being said, we’d like to share our advice for how to get the most out of your physical therapy after your knee replacement surgery.

Start Before Surgery

Rehab begins before surgery. This is known as prehab or preoperative rehab. Numerous studies have shown the benefits of physical therapy and physical training before surgery. Individuals who train and exercise before knee replacement surgery have better range of motion, strength, and overall function after the surgery.

This leads to a quicker recovery. (See our blog post titled: What is Prehab? )

Learn About Pain

Pain is complex and many factors in your life contribute to pain including physical, social, psychological, emotional, and environmental. The more you can learn about the contributors to pain, the more you’ll be able to make positive lifestyle changes to manage the pain effectively.

Understand the Process and Have Patience

Recovery takes time. You may only notice small improvements initially, and that is okay. The average course of outpatient physical therapy can last 12-16 weeks, but you may not experience 100% recovery for up to 6 months. Keep doing all the right things and eventually it will pay off with a great recovery and outcome.

Follow Instructions

Everything your physical therapist tells you is for a reason. Any instructions we provide is based off the goal of you having a full and positive recovery with no avoidable setbacks.

Ask Questions

Your physical therapists, and all the healthcare professionals, are there to help you. Do not feel intimidated to ask any and all questions. Being well-informed and knowledgeable regarding all aspects of your recovery will only benefit you more. There are no stupid questions.

Be Consistent

You won’t notice much change in strength or range of motion after just one therapy session. However, if you remain consistent with your exercises and activities, and regularly attend therapy, little by little you will see the fruits of your labors.

Consider Your Complete Health

Many factors play a role in your recovery after knee replacement surgery. Consider all aspects of your health and determine where you can make some positive changes. Consider things like nutrition, sleep, emotional health, mental health and more.

Continue After Therapy Ends

Your recovery does not stop once you are discharged from physical therapy. It is important to continue with all the exercises you learned in physical therapy and perform them on a regular basis.

It is also important to find ways to maintain the health of your knee and whole body. Great activities to try include walking, aquatic exercises, yoga, and much more.

About the Authors

The Joint Replacement Therapists, Doctors Jordan and Luke Pedersen, are two physical therapists and the founders of the Joint Replacement Therapists website at The Joint Replacement Therapists.

Jordan and Luke are orthopedic therapists who have worked with many individuals before and after joint replacement surgery.

They realized the shortcomings with a lot of the educational material available to individuals considering joint replacement surgery. The Joint Replacement Therapists strive to provide thorough evidence-based information in an organized manner for individuals considering or planning joint replacement surgery.

Their hopes are the information gained will help decrease patient anxieties and improve confidence regarding the entire joint replacement process.
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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.

Booktoots’ Healing 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.







How To Fit Exercise Into Your New Year’s Resolution

Hi everyone. The New Year is here and many resolutions involve getting in better shape. I regularly hear how there is no time to exercise. Here are some tried-and-true tips on how to fit exercise into your New Year’s resolution:

Isometrics
These maneuvers involve simply tightening your muscles. Tighten one muscle, like your butt, and hold for a few seconds. Release tension and relax. Repeat with other muscle groups.

Isometrics are particularly helpful when recuperating from a tkr – total knee replacement. Tighten your thigh muscles (quadriceps) to rebuild strength lost by incisions made.

Planks
These dandies give you an all-body workout. Start out by doing only one minute and gradually build up your time and endurance.

Get onto the floor with your arms and legs extended. It’s the position used when doing a push-up. Place your body weight onto your hands and feet. Straighten your elbows. Hold in your stomach (core) muscles. Breathe normally as you hold this position for one minute – or less – to start.

When done correctly you will feel your arms, stomach, shoulders, back, and leg muscles all working in sync.

Stretches
For an excellent back, neck, and leg stretch, stand and gently bend over to touch your toes. Let your head hang freely. Stretch as far as possible. Hold this position for as long as comfortable.

For an easy leg stretch, sit with your legs stretched (extended) in front of you. Keep your heels on the surface, toes pointed toward the ceiling. Gently move your upper body forward until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings (backside of your knee/leg). Hold this position for 10 seconds.

Gently and slowly return to your starting position. Repeat as needed.

Walking
Walking provides a cardiovascular and musculoskeletal workout. Do it at your own pace. Remember to wear comfortable, well-fitted shoes and socks.

Motto of story: Never let lack of time be an excuse for not exercising. The benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. There is always a way. Just find what works for you. The above-mentioned tips on how to fit exercise into your New Year’s resolution are still working for health-conscious individuals.

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 physical-related concerns.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.







How To Increase Awareness

Hi everyone. Many of you have contacted me asking how you can best share the news about this site with others who may need it. Here are a following suggestions for how to increase awareness. And..thanks!

* Submit this site to your social media groups.

* Mention this site in your visits to other total knee replacement online sites. If you visit other knee forums, it provides a great opportunity to share the word about how this site has been helpful to you or one of your friends.

* Mention it to your offline friends, relatives and others you know who may find the information useful for their particular situation.

* You can also place a link to my site on your blog, website or other online content.
Copy and paste this text:
https://www.booktoots.com

THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR HELP IN TAKING STEPS ON HOW TO INCREASE AWARENESS!

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.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.







Ways To Optimize Your TKR Success

Ways To Optimize TKR Success

Hi everyone. This post is about finding ways to optimize your tkr success. Doing as much as you can, before and after your surgery, will pay dividends beyond your wildest dreams. They will put you back on the road to living a fruitful, healthy lifestyle. Here goes….

Be Frugal
More than likely (if you’re lucky), your health insurance will cover a total knee replacement (herein known as tkr). Still, you must concern yourself with getting the most for your money. There will probably be some out-of-pocket costs (expenses) involved. Get the biggest bang for your buck.

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Healthline

Develop A “Can Do” Attitude
Your train of thought will help or hinder the entire tkr process. If you go into the endeavor with a “I’m dreading, hating, despising this” mode of thinking – you’re doomed from the beginning.

It is natural to have some negative thoughts at times. You are undergoing a life-changing, arduous surgery that requires immense sacrifice, fortitude, and determination. If you think you cannot do it, you will be correct. You won’t achieve success.

It’s a psychological phenomenon known as a “self-fulfilling prophecy”. There are numerous articles, books, and other media that discuss this topic, if you are interested. Just do some research. Or, as is common nowadays..”Google It”.

For a real-life case of children surviving by having this “I Know I Can Do It” attitude, click here:

“I Know I Can Do It!”

Follow Your Physician’s Orders
That seems like common sense, but there are those who refuse to do this. There is a reason your doctor tells you to do something. It is to increase your tkr success.

Do Your Physical Therapy Exercises
This is the toughest part of any tkr recuperation. You need to do guided exercises that focus on all your leg muscle groups. You need to “rebuild” your strength, endurance, and flexibility. And, it will be painful and trying. I guarantee that!

Continue Exercising
Yes, that’s correct. Once your tkr physical therapy recuperation office visits end, do those exercises at home. Keep on doing them. NEVER GIVE UP!

Well, that’s about it for now. I’ll update this article when needed.

Your tkr success is up to you!

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 concern.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.







A Therapy Car For TKR Recuperation? YES!

Hi everyone. We all know the difficulties of getting in and out of a car after having a total knee replacement (aka tkr) surgery. There is some exciting news happening in the medical rehabilitation development field…it’s called a Therapy Car.

I just finished reading a very interesting article in the current issue of Virginia Mason’s newsletter. The Therapy Car was developed by the team members at this prestigious and world-known hospital. The device is in the licensing process for manufacture and distribution worldwide.

The model Therapy Car frame is composed of light-weight connectors and tubing that can be adjusted to simulate different automotive makes and models. There is something for everyone going through the total knee replacement recuperation process. How cool is that?

Before you go out and try to buy one, though – the therapy car is only used under the supervision of an occupational or physical therapist. It’ll be part of the therapy tools we can use during our tkr recuperation.

Find interesting? (And why wouldn’t you?)…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 physical concerns.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physical concerns for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.







How To Use Ankle Weights During Your TKR Recuperation

Hi everyone. Many of you have contacted me about how to use ankle weights during your tkr recuperation. The two go together like apple pie and ice cream. Here are a some of the most beneficial exercises that helped me during my total knee replacement recuperation period. I still do them years after my tkr, fyi.

1) A simple way to get some flexibility back into the knee, is to securely wrap one of your 2-5-pound ankle weights around your tkr-side ankle. Start walking. Just by walking around, it helps stretch and strengthen your hamstring. The stronger your hamstring, the more secure your bionic knee becomes.

2) Do a knee extension. Start by sitting in a chair with your feet on the floor. Place one of your ankle weights around your tkr-side ankle. Slowly and gently lift your foot from the floor and begin straightening your knee. Be sure to keep your toes pointed toward the ceiling. Hold for five seconds, if possible. Slowly return to original position.

3) If you are like me, your tkr knee will be bent after your total knee replacement. Here is a wonderful maneuver that I used to help straighten my leg: Sit in a firm chair. Lift the heel of your tkr leg onto another chair.

The back of your knee will be unsupported. Then, put one of your ankle weights on top of your bionic knee. Be sure to start out with a lighter weight for safety purposes. Stay like this for at least 5 minutes. It will hurt…

Keep working at your tkr recuperation. It is a long and arduous process, but it will come…..:)

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 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

 

How To Safely Maneuver Stairs, Steps and Ramps

Hi everyone. As you all know, having knee issues presents a unique set of concerns regarding everyday life. One main issue is conquering elevated surfaces. Let’s just say..”It ain’t for sissies.” Here are some suggestions I find helpful on how to safely maneuver stairs, steps and ramps. They all minimize knee stress.

Test the Area
First and foremost, do a safety check. Not all stairs, steps, or ramps are created equally. Check the surface material. Is it wet, dry, asphalt, cement, rubber, etc.? The material will determine your caution level and the type of footwear needed.

Before starting any attempt, make certain you are comfortable using the surfaces. The step may be thicker (steeper) than the standard version we learned to use during tkr recuperation. It may be narrower, have rounded corners, or contain uneven surfaces. All of these factors matter.

For instance, the steeper the surface level, the more physical exertion needed. Rounded corners are easier to misjudge.

FOR UPSTAIR MANEUVERING

Use Railings
I know this is common sense, but I have seen people too proud to use these helpful devices. Forget pride. Hold onto these with a firm grip whenever possible. They were developed for a reason. Always make certain they are securely attached to the wall before using to prevent injury.

Walk Sideways
Instead of taking the surface head-on, turn your body sideways. Place your “good” leg on the surface, then lift your body up until you are firmly on the surface. Don’t rush it. You will feel your quadriceps working.

“One Small Step”
Instead of alternating legs like you would when climbing stairs, place your “good” leg on the surface. Lift your body up until your knee is straight and supporting your body weight. GEntly lift your tkr (or hindered) leg and place it on the surface. Stand upright. Repeat this until you reach the top of the stairs, steps, and ramps.

To visualize this method…, you will be standing (full body) on a stair, step or ramp before moving to the next one.

Use a Cane or Crutch
This may take more time, but what’s the hurry? Remember that it is always better safe than sorry. Place the walking aide in your nonaffected-side hand. Hold firmly and apply pressure to lift your body weight up onto the stair, step, or ramp. When done correctly, your arm muscles will get a good workout.

FOR DOWNSTAIRS MANEUVERING

Walk Backwards
Turn your back to the stairs, steps, or ramp. You may feel strange, but forget what others think. Hold onto the railing, if available. Very slowly start walking backwards, one foot before the other. When done correctly, you will feel your hamstrings (back of knee) muscles working while doing this maneuver to conquer stairs, steps, and ramps.

Walk Sideways
From personal experience…Avoid this method if you wear an external shoelift. For all other interested parties, conquer the elevated surface by pretending you are a crab. Go slow and be successful.

Well, that’s all that comes to mind now about this topic. Do you have any suggestions on how you conquer stairs, steps, or ramps? We would love to hear from you!

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.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.