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Getting Strong with Exercise After Breast Cancer Add html Getting Strong With Exercise After Breast Cancer By Naomi Aaronson MA Jan Oblak Jersey , OTRL, CHT We are bombarded daily with conflicting messages regarding exercise and diet. If you have had breast cancer, it is even more confusing. Should you exercise after surgery? When should exercise begin? What kind of exercises should you do? Should you use weights if you are at risk for developing lymphedema? What if you feel pain when you exercise? The information that follows can help you to begin an exercise program to increase flexibility and strength in the affected arm and develop better posture after undergoing breast cancer surgery. This information can help to facilitate your recovery and reduce lymphedema risk. It is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, and a physician芒鈧劉s clearance should be obtained before you begin this or any exercise program. Exercise After Surgery Most women are able to begin light exercise to the shoulder, arm Guilherme Siqueira Jersey , back, and hand after the surgical drains are removed. Before you begin, you should talk with your doctor about the exercises that you intend to do. It is important to strengthen your arm after surgery. This will help you to perform daily activities, such as lifting children or groceries, more easily. Strengthening the arm also will help to prevent musculoskeletal problems due to muscle imbalances and weakness. Young women who are put into premature menopause early due to chemotherapy and women who use an aromatase inhibitor as their hormonal therapy are at increased risk of osteoporosis. For these women Gabi Jersey , exercises that strengthen the back, hips, and wrists are a necessity to reduce the risk of fractures. Lymphedema Lymphedema is a chronic condition characterized by the swelling of a body part. It occurs when lymphatic fluid builds up because it cannot drain properly due to malfunctioning of the lymphatic system. Lymphedema is estimated to effect up to 40 percent of women whose breast cancer treatment included lymph node dissection and or radiation. If you are at risk of developing lymphedema, you must proceed slowly with an exercise program. Before you begin any of these exercises, you should consult an occupational therapist or physical therapist who can teach you what exercises to do and can help you learn the right way to do them. Your physical therapist or occupational therapist will probably suggest that you perform exercises that will strengthen the muscles around the shoulder and shoulder girdle Filipe Luis Jersey , as this can facilitate alternative lymphatic pathways and help reduce the risk of developing lymphedema. Exercises that can strengthen this area work on the anterior deltoid, middle deltoid, triceps, and rotator cuff. Exercises that strengthen the lower back and abdominals are important as well. It is necessary that you learn how to do these strengthening exercises properly. Doing the exercises the wrong way may lead to injury and won芒鈧劉t build the muscles that you are trying to focus on. Your physical therapist or occupational therapist may recommend that you wear a sleeve on the affected arm. A sleeve is a type of compression garment. Sleeves provide gentle pressure that helps to return lymphatic fluid back to the heart, they also support the muscle as it contracts. You may need to wear the sleeve while you go about your daily activities as well as when you exercise. Check Your Posture It is important to have good posture while you are exercising. It is quite common to find postural changes after surgery. As you are exercising check and see: Is your head forward? Are your shoulders slumped forward? Is your back hunched? Look into a mirror and try to correct yourself by planting your feet under you shoulders and keeping your knees unlocked. The chest should be lifted with the shoulder blades back. Line up your ears over your shoulders. There should be a gentle curve in your neck and lower back. Warm Up: Neck and Shoulder Rolls Neck rolls and shoulder rolls are a good warm-up that can be done right before you start a formal exercise program or begin your daily activities. Use a deep breathing technique that can assist with pain management and the return of lymphatic fluid to the heart. As you inhale Fernando Torres Jersey , feel your abdominals and chest expand; as you exhale feel them flatten. Take 5 counts to inhale and 5 counts to exhale. It is natural to feel some pain, as you just went through major surgery. But you should not feel a lot of pain. Keep going if you have some discomfort. If you have a lot of pain, stop. Slowly and gradually, while using the deep breathing technique, try to do more rolls each time you exercise. If you find that you need assistance performing the exercises described below ( such as the shoulder lift) or that you are experiencing a lot of pain Diogo Jota Jersey , ask your physician for a referral to an occupational therapist or physical therapist who is skilled in this area. Increase Range of Motion: Stretching One of your goals should be to improve your range of motion. Performing stretching exercises that focus on the armpit and the chest area can do this. These should be done daily for up to two years after surgery to promote flexibility. These exercises can help stretch scar tissue, which can severely limit range of motion, and which continues to form for up to two years after surgery. It is better to do several repetitions of a few exercises over the course of the day rather than perform all of your stretching exercises at once. When you begin, you should do each stretch five times. Your goal is to hold each stretch at the furthest point you can achieve for ten seconds. Gradually increase the time allotted to 15-20 seconds. Then gradually increase the number of repetitions until you are doing each stretch 10 times. If you are at risk for developing lymphedema, you will want to speak with your physical therapist or occupational therapist about how to monitor your arm.