Work-Life Balance: 10 Ways to Add Exercise to Your Daily Life

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on July 26, 2022

10 Ways to Add Exercise to Your Daily Life   The modern world is built around convenience. We’re constantly looking for ways to make every aspect of our lives just a bit easier and more efficient. As a result, we end up moving less and becoming sedentary. We spend much of our day seated at a desk, at a table, in a car or on a train or bus. Physical activity ends up becoming a …


child on a bike

Nature is Therapeutic: The Value of Outdoor Play for Sensory Issues

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on June 14, 2022

What are Common Signs of Sensory Issues? We don’t have to look very far to see signs of sensory issues. These issues can take on many forms. Some children are overly sensitive to incoming sensory information and may become easily overwhelmed by sensory experiences. Others are under responsive and require more extreme sensory input to elicit a response. Some are sensory seeking and are constantly looking for more sensory input. Sensory issues can also take …


child playing twister

Things to Do on a Rainy Day: 10 Rainy Day Activities With Kids

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on June 1, 2022

You’ve checked the forecast on www.accuweather.com and have found that your day home with the kids isn’t the bright, sunshiny day you had hoped for. It’s chilly, rainy, windy, or anything else that doesn’t make spending the day outside sound like a good idea anymore. What are some rainy day activities that you can do? You and your family have been cooped up in the house for months and you’re bored of the same thing. …


Speech Therapy Activities for Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on May 17, 2022

What is a Traumatic Brain Injury? A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an acquired brain injury that is the result of an external physical force to the head or other way of dislodgement of the brain. There can be focal damage in an open head injury, such as a gunshot wound, or diffused damage in a closed head injury, such as a concussion. Although TBIs can affect people in any age group, adolescents (15-19 years …


Supporting Your Child’s Speech and Language Development: 5 Engaging Activities for Speech and Language Practice at Home

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on May 3, 2022

Stuck at home with your child? Wondering what you can do to help your child further develop his/her speech and language skills? Try some of these home speech therapy activities to support your child’s speech and language development. At this point, most parents are wondering how their children’s teachers do what they do day in and day out! Being home all day, every day can lead to boredom and a lack of routine. But, don’t …


How to Call Your Insurance Company for Therapy Services

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on April 19, 2022

When starting therapy, there are different ways to go about paying for it. Most of the time you’ll be able to submit it to your insurance company and they will be able to pick up some of the patient responsibility for you! If you are wondering how much they will pick up, you can call them to see what your therapy benefits are. Do you need to call your insurance company but have no idea …


The Best Games for Occupational Therapy: Fun with a Purpose

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on April 8, 2022

Games…there are all types out there! Board games, card games, strategic games, silly games, fast-paced games, hour-long games. Most people play games for  fun and pure enjoyment but underneath the fun and competition there are many different purposes to consider and secretly address.  Growing up, games were a constant in my family. We had shelves full of puzzles and games to play. That enjoyment has spilled over into my Occupational  Therapy sessions with patients of …


Tips from a Physical Therapist to Improve Balance at Home

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on March 22, 2022

It is not uncommon for people to take a quick stumble in their house and wonder why. As individuals age, it is unfortunately very common for an individual to have an unexpected fall. One in every 3 adults over the age of 65 take a  serious tumble in their life.”Aging. however, isn’t the only reason people lose their sense of stability,” says A. Lynn  Millar, PhD, a professor of physical therapy at Winston-Salem State University. …


10 Everyday Home Items as Exercise Equipment

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on March 8, 2022

Getting a good workout at home doesn’t mean you have to break the bank or get any sort of fancy equipment. You can create your own gym with some everyday items around the house and still feel the burn!  Think of it as a way to do your Physical Therapy exercises at home. Here are 10 items you probably have at home that you didn’t even think about using for your next workout: Laundry Detergent …


Supporting Your Child’s Speech and Language Development

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on March 3, 2022

5 Engaging Activities for Speech and Language Practice at Home Stuck at home with your child? Wondering what you can do to help your child further develop his/her speech and language skills? Try some of these home speech therapy activities to support your child’s speech and language development. At this point, most parents are wondering how their children’s teachers do what they do day in and day out! Being home all day, every day can …


Improve Your Endurance and Feel Better: Tips from Physical Therapists

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on February 15, 2022

Cardio & Muscular Endurance Getting winded walking to the bathroom? Feeling fatigued earlier in the day than you used to? Your endurance may be to blame. Most people think of endurance as a marathon runner, after many miles of running, crossing a finish line in a crowd and drinking a huge bottle of water. Our endurance is so much more than that. It is a product of how well our cardiovascular system is working, how …


Ergonomic Strategies for Using a Suitcase

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on February 15, 2022

Effects of a Heavy Suitcase Lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling, carrying, holding, and dragging heavy loads involve static and dynamic efforts, which cause strain on muscles and joints, and wear and tear on the back.  Tips for Selecting the Right Suitcase Size: Buy different size suitcases for different occasions. The size should reflect the length of your trip. •  Type: If traveling by air, select wheeled luggage. If traveling by car, select duffels or garment bags.   …


Children & Nutrition: Tips from a Licensed Occupational Therapist

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on February 1, 2022

Have you ever said, “Just eat the chicken…it is the same as a chicken nugget! “ What about french fries, mashed potatoes, hash browns, and the very dreaded baked potato?! They seem the same to most of us but there is such a big difference to kids and adults with sensory and feeding issues. Introducing your child to new foods or transitioning to healthier alternatives can be a challenge. Our team of licensed occupational therapists …


Prevent Back Injury: Physical Therapy in Erie, PA

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on January 18, 2022

How to Prevent Injury When Moving or Lifting Heavy Furniture There are many things that can lead to needing a Physical Therapist. Hurting yourself while moving something is a common reason! Moving or lifting heavy furniture or objects is something that comes up for many people at some time or another. Whether you are rearranging a room, getting rid of something old, or cleaning your carpets, items that may be heavy need to be moved …


Former Governor Tom Ridge Finds Hope in Recovery

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on January 7, 2022

  Source: WGAL News 8 Today Originally Posted on December 28th, 2021 by LORI BURKHOLDER WGAL News 8 is bringing you an exclusive interview with former Pennsylvania governor and the first U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge. He shared his journey following a health scare over the summer. “I’m getting better every day by increments. I can tell. I’m doing great. Fabulous. Better than I was a couple months ago, that’s for sure,” he …


Winter Speech Therapy Activities for Children at Home

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on January 6, 2022

Winter Speech Therapy Activities for Children at Home Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?  The holidays may have ended, but, let’s face it — the snow is here to stay for a while! This time of year in Erie, PA there’s usually plenty of snow to build a snowman (or five). Building a snowman with your child can be a fun and engaging way to incorporate some speech and language fun! Below are a few …


Tips to Stay Safe and Prevent Injury While Shoveling Snow

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on December 22, 2021

Tips to Stay Safe and Prevent Injury While Shoveling Snow It’s beginning to look a lot like…winter in Erie, PA. Our licensed physical therapists put together a list of tips to keep in mind when clearing the snow in order to decrease your risk of injury and stay safe during this “Season of Snow”. Don’t let it stick – Before going out, spray your shovel with cooking spray. This prevents the snow from packing up …


What Are Phonological Processes? – What You Need to Know

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on November 23, 2021

What Are Phonological Processes? I’m sure when you hear the term “phonological processes”, you wonder “what are those?” Phonological processes are common patterns of speech sound errors in children under 5. There are many different types of processes that can occur. If you hear someone mention one of these terms, now you will know what they mean! Examples of Phonological Processes Final consonant deletion—when the final consonant sound is omitted in words  ha instead of …


MS and Cold Temperatures: Combat Cold Intolerances

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on November 16, 2021

Many people are already aware that heat often worsens symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). But for some, colder temperatures can be just as problematic. While excess heat exacerbates certain symptoms of the disease, lower temperatures can also increase symptoms and lead to more challenges. Symptoms include increased pain, decreased mobility,  muscle cramping, stiffness/tightness, spasticity, fatigue, and even decreased mood, leading to increased levels of depression.  Here are some ways to combat these symptoms of cold …


“What Does My Insurance Mean?”

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on November 2, 2021

“What Does My Insurance Mean?” So, you have concluded that you need therapy services but are not sure what costs will be your responsibility. You will hear words like “Deductible”, “Coinsurance” and “Authorizations” but what does all this really mean? We are here to help. We have compiled a list of the most commonly asked about insurance terms, and their definitions to help you better understand how they relate to you, your therapy services, and …


What Kind of Therapist Do I Need? Niagara Therapy

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on October 19, 2021

What Kind of Therapist Do I Need? When therapy services are required, oftentimes, we simply go to the facility or therapist that our doctor or a friend directs us to. However, that doesn’t mean that is the right facility or therapist for you. Each of us is unique in our needs and should do a little research to find the place that best meets our needs as an individual. Here are some things you will …


The glymphatic system and sleep helps napping woman fight neurological disease.

The Glymphatic System and Sleep: How Sleep Fights Neurological Disease

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on October 4, 2021

  The Glymphatic system is a recently discovered macroscopic waste clearance system that uses a unique network of perivascular channels surrounding the brain and central nervous system. As the Lymphatic system removes waste and transports nutrients and proteins throughout the body, the Glymphatic system does so surrounding the brain. There is a system of tiny tubules that carry spinal fluid, entering the spaces between brain cells, and picking up waste along the way. These vessels …


Female speech therapist helps young blonde girl with learning to speak

What Is The Difference Between Speech and Language?

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on September 22, 2021

  There are major differences in the areas of speech and language. However, both areas are equally important.  Speech is how we produce words and sounds. Language refers to how we use these words in order to communicate our wants and needs.  There are three different areas to consider when talking about speech: articulation, voice, and fluency.   What is Articulation? Articulation refers to how we make speech sounds using our tongue, lips, and mouth. …


Young boy pushes away bowl of soup at lunchtime.

Dealing with Picky Eaters: 10 Questions About Your Child’s Eating Habits & How You Can Help

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on September 15, 2021

  Have you ever felt as if your child is a picky eater?  Maybe your child will only eat certain tastes or textures, or maybe your child won’t even sit at the dinner table with the rest of the family.  Some people will tell you that your child will “grow out of it” but sometimes there is more to picky eating than meeting a milestone. Often, there are underlying sensory concerns, social-emotional issues, or motor …


Black mom reads to daughter pointing out words and pictures in playroom

Language Development Activities for Toddlers & Infants to Encourage Speech & Language Development

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on September 7, 2021

  Children begin learning language skills from the moment they are born and continue learning throughout their lives. Speech and language development is an important part of development in young children, and there are ways that parents can help encourage these skills at home. When thinking about ways to encourage speech and language development at home, it is important to remember that words are not the only way children learn to communicate. Non-verbal communication plays …


School-aged girl and boy with backpacks wearing masks on the first day of school

Back to School: Preparing Students for the New School Year

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on August 18, 2021

    It’s hard to believe that it’s already that time of year again to get your child back into their school routine. Many children can often feel anxious about returning to school, even under typical circumstances, however, it has been especially difficult the past year with all of the changes, and new protocols. For parents and students alike, the transition back into a more typical school routine after extended periods at home may be …


Female pediatric speech therapist worths with young child on speech techniques

Does My Child Have a Speech Sound Disorder?

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on August 4, 2021

  All children are unique, and develop speech and language skills at their own pace. No two children will ever be alike. When children are learning new sounds and words, there will often be errors in the way that they produce these sounds.  This is expected, and often children will correct these speech sound differences on their own. However, sometimes these errors can continue, and may be a sign that the child has a speech …


Young woman communicates with a hand on an elderly woman's shoulder

Communicating with Dementia Patients: Speech Therapy, Nonverbal Communication & More

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on July 27, 2021

  Patients with dementia may have difficulty understanding or communicating verbally, communicating when you have dementia, or know a loved one with dementia, can be challenging. There are a variety of ways that you can help yourself or a loved one to communicate more effectively.  Non-Verbal Communication Non-verbal communication is one method of communication that is effective with dementia patients who find conversation too difficult. Non-verbal communication is communicating without the use of spoken words. …


Adult hands make a paperclip chain with large handful of colored paperclips

Hand Therapy Activities to Improve Hand Control in Adults at Home

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on July 13, 2021

  Hand control and fine motor coordination are imperative for everyday self-care and household tasks as well as for play activities. Quite often, when a loved one has had a stroke or other neurologic event, brain injury, or condition, these abilities are diminished. Sometimes, these skills can even be delayed in children. Here are a few hand therapy ideas that are easy to implement at home for improving fine motor coordination and hand control in …


Female physical therapist wearing blue scrubs helps a male patient with shoulder mobility

Fascial Counterstrain Therapy Pain Management Treatment in Erie, PA

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on July 6, 2021

  Fascial Counterstrain (FCS) is a form of strain/ counterstrain that was originally developed by Dr. Larry Jones and modified by his last student, Brian Tuckey. It is a passive manipulation of the body’s deep fascia to reduce sympathetic hyperactivity and reduce inflammation and protective muscle spasm of the sympathetic nervous system.   What Makes Strain-Counterstrain Therapy so Different from Traditional Exercise-Based Therapies? While traditional therapies focus on muscles, tendons, bones, and ligaments, Fascial Strain-Counterstrain looks …


Bird feeder made by children out of a used paper roll

Sensory-Friendly Summer Activities in Erie, PA: How to Build a Bird Feeder

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on June 30, 2021

  Are you looking for a sensory-friendly activity to do with your child this summer?  With over 26 common backyard birds sighted throughout the summer months in Pennsylvania, why not make a bird feeder? To build a bird feeder that will attract birds all summer long and provide an engaging, simple activity that will delight your kids only requires a few household items: An empty toilet paper roll; peanut butter; bird seed in a dish, …


Young boy runs on a dirt road

Running Gait in Children: My Kid Runs Funny, Should I Be Concerned?

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on June 17, 2021

  It is no secret that children, especially very young children, don’t start out running or even walking with grace. Children tend to look very ungainly when they run and walk, flailing feet, arms, and legs alike. Children differ in the innate ability to learn and execute different skills, such as learning to walk, run, and participate in other gross motor activities. While running gait may differ from one child to the next, some children …


Woman relaxes listening to headphones with ocean in the background

Can Music be Therapeutic? How to Use Music as Therapy to Improve Mental Health

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on June 9, 2021

  Music has a connection to every area of our brain. It can relax us, decrease our anxiety, improve our attention, and also keep us moving. We often connect to different songs or styles of music in different ways. Music can be extremely therapeutic in different ways. Music involves using a person’s connections and responses to music to encourage improvement to a person’s mood and overall well-being. Using music for therapy can range from creating …


Infographic explaining F-A-S-T stroke signs

4 FAST Identifiers of a Stroke and Stroke Rehabilitation

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on May 17, 2021

  May is National Stroke Awareness Month. The best way to prevent a stroke is to understand exactly what a stroke is and how to identify if someone is showing signs of a stroke. A stroke is a type of brain injury that occurs due to an interruption of the brain’s blood supply. A stroke is the number five cause of death and a leading cause of disability in the United States. The effects from …


Open planner for goal setting.

Mental Health Improvement Techniques, Be SMART: How to Get Back into a Healthy Routine After 2020

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on April 30, 2021

  Everyone has had an unexpected year, some more than others. It’s hard to get back to “normal” after our world was flipped upside down during the previous year. For many, mental and physical health have both been greatly impacted. Many are wondering, where do I begin and how can I start to feel like me again. Setting timely and realistic goals will help get you back on track without the additional stressors. Using the …


Young girl in blue dress walking on tip toe

Idiopathic Toe Walking Exercises & Physical Therapy for Children

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on April 13, 2021

Toe walking is when a child walks on the balls of their feet without their heels touching the ground. Children under the age of 2 often experiment with walking on their toes but will typically outgrow it quickly and use a heel-to-toe gait pattern. In some cases, toe walking in children may be a sign of underlying medical conditions, but in most cases the cause is unknown. Idiopathic toe walking refers to toe walking in children …


Two young boys ride bikes to the playground.

10 Child Physical Therapist Recommended Outdoor Activities to Improve Gross Motor Skills

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on March 23, 2021

Gross Motor Skills and Child Development During the course of an average day, we don’t give gross motor skills much thought, but they are integral to activities such as maintaining balance, walking, sitting upright, jumping, and throwing objects. Gross motor skills require the use of large muscle groups that coordinate body movements, and can be critical to child development. Gross motor skills are building blocks to other abilities, including physical strength, reaction time, coordination, and …


Dealing with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in the Winter

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on May 7, 2019

Many people are already aware that heat often worsens symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). But for some, colder temperatures can be just as problematic. While excess heat exacerbates certain symptoms of the disease, lower temperatures can increase muscle cramping, stiffness/tightness, spasticity, fatigue, and even decrease mood, leading to increased levels of depression.  Here are some ways to combat cold intolerance – Stretch – Stay mobile to reduce stiffness. Yoga is a great way to stretch, …


Orange shovel stuck in the snow

Tips to Stay Safe and Prevent Injury when Shoveling Snow

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on May 7, 2019

It’s beginning to look a lot like….. Winter in Erie, PA. Keep these tips in mind when clearing the snow in order to decrease your risk of injury and stay safe during this “Season of Snow”. Don’t let it Stick – Before going out, spray your shovel with cooking spray. This prevents the snow from packing up on the shovel, which weighs it down. The snow will just slide right off. Stay Hydrated – Despite …


Three young girls in snowsuits play in the snow

10 Fun Gross Motor Activities That Will Have Your Children Outside Enjoying the Snow

Posted by Niagara Therapy, LLC on January 28, 2019

Yes, that time of the year is almost upon us…winter weather season. While we may be dreading the snowy commutes to work and tuning up the snow blowers, there’s no reason to stay stuck inside every day when the snow flies. Beat cabin fever with these 10 gross motor activities and games that the whole family will enjoy: 1. Make snow angels: Lie back in the snow and move your legs apart and together as …


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