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  • Proper Pillows for Sleeping in Different Positions: Part Two, Accommodation Pillows

    Posted on April 21, 2015 by Core Products

    In our last post we discussed knowing the two different kinds of pillows before diving into the decision process.

    Let’s take a closer look at some of our accommodation pillows which, for the most part, are also memory foam pillows.

    Generally, accommodation pillows are created more for people with long-term conditions or a recent injury. We often hear these types of people consider support pillows to be a bit too much or too aggressive for their needs.

    Memory foam pillows allow people to get a good night’s sleep no matter what the cervical condition. The name says it all. These pillows accommodate by conforming to whatever a patient’s cervical situation is.

    The Double Core Select Cervical Pillow and Double Core Cervical Pillow let you select the support you need. The two lobes allow you to change the level of support you desire without having to change pillows. The Select edition allows you to swap out the color-coded lobe inserts on the fly as you see fit.

    Our Core Memory Foam Cervical Pillow conforms to the unique shape of your neck no matter how you fall asleep. This pillow will help alleviate neck pain and can cut back on snoring. Why not also give your partner a good night’s rest as well?

    Looking for a smaller, convenient travel option? The AB Contour Cervical Pillow is small enough to pack and the satin cover helps prevent unsightly face wrinkles and can help keep your hairstyle in place.

    If you’re looking for a simple pillow to support your neck in its most natural position, consider the Core Basic Cervical Pillow. This pillow helps alleviate tension in the neck and can help promote healing in individuals recovering from an injury.

    The Econo Wave Cervical Pillow allows air to circulate while providing support thanks to the waved surface (see here). Two lobe sizes offer different support levels when choosing this soothing pillow.

    View Part 1 of 3 in the Proper Pillows for Sleeping Series


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  • Proper Pillows for Sleeping in Different Positions: Part One, Knowing the Different Types of Pillows

    Posted on April 17, 2015 by Core Products

    Choosing the right pillow for a patient’s needs (or your own needs) can be a difficult undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be! Everyone’s sleeping habits and sleeping needs are different so it’s important to start by understanding the different kinds of pillows out there in order to choose the right pillow.

    The main two types of pillows offered here at Core Products are accommodation pillows and support pillows.

    Typically, accommodation pillows are best for people dealing with a long-term condition or a recent injury. Support pillows are best for the average patient or person who needs extra support around their neck to get a proper night’s sleep. Support pillows create support under the cervical spine and keep one’s body in alignment.

    The next step after knowing the different kinds of pillows is even more important: choosing the right pillow. Doctors generally make a determination based on the cervical condition of their patient.

    If you are rehabbing an injury or have a long-term condition, try out an accommodation pillow. If you don’t have either of those, here are a few questions to ask yourself:

    -  At night, do you like to put your arm under the pillow?

    -  Do you fold your pillow or roll an end up?

    -  Do you often stack pillows on top of each other?

    You are subconsciously searching for more support if you’re doing any of these things. A yes response to any of these questions means a support pillow is probably right for you.

    View Part 2 of 3 in the Proper Pillows for Sleeping Series - Accommodation Pillows


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  • Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) could be the Cause of Your Chronic Back Pain

    Posted on April 13, 2015 by Core Products

    Ankylosing Spondylitis is a relatively difficult disease to diagnose that is often mistaken for back pain caused by mechanical issues such as injury. AS is a chronic, inflammatory, autoimmune disease that attacks the spine resulting in back pain and, in some cases, pain to the shoulder blades, hips, and even feet.

    Rather than brought on by an injury, heavy lifting, or physical strain, back pain caused by AS is due to inflammation in the spinal joints, referred to as inflammatory back pain (IBP). In contrast, back pain caused by injury or strain is referred to as mechanical low back pain (MLBP).

    So why are you just recently starting to hear people talk about AS? It was previously thought to be a fairly rare disease, but has garnered more attention in recent years as doctors have discovered a much higher prevalence in the U.S. Current estimates predict that 1 out of every 200 adults in our country may have AS. If that estimate is correct, over 1 million Americans are affected by AS–close to the number of people diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis!

    Here are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about AS:

    Q: What groups are susceptible to AS?

    A: AS usually affects younger adults, with symptoms starting to arise between ages 20 and 30. While it was prior belief that men were much more likely to have AS than women, new research has suggested that there is no gender bias.

    Q: What causes AS?

    A: It can be genetic, but most people won’t know if that applies in their case since the majority of Americans struggling with back pain resulting from AS don’t realize it’s being caused by a medical issue, and therefore are never diagnosed or aware of the disease.

    Q: What are the signs and symptoms of AS, and how do they differ from those for MLBP?

    While the pain may be similar or identical, studies have demonstrated some common disparities between patients with IBP from those with MLBP. Prolonged morning stiffness lasting over 30 minutes is a distinguishing sign of inflammatory back pain (although not determining). In conjunction with the disparity in morning pain experienced, IBP patients are much more likely to wake up very early in the morning due to pain in comparison to MLBP patients, while both groups studied were equally likely to wake up at other times throughout the night resulting from their pain.

    IBP also has a slower onset, whereas most MLBP has a very acute onset. Another strong indicator is improvement from rest and exercise. AS patients are more likely to report pain relief from exercise but not rest (which was actually linked with worsening the pain), while MLBP patients report the complete opposite (most experienced improvement from rest but no noticeable trend was found between exercise and pain relief).

    Q: Is there a way to medically test for AS?

    There isn’t a medical test per se, but a rheumatologist will be able to determine AS to a fairly accurate degree by evaluating x-rays, medical history, and blood work to test for HLA-B27. The majority of IBP patients in studies conducted tested positive for HLA-B27 (89.1% of sample), a protein found on the surface of white blood cells that helps the body’s immune system tell the difference between its own cells and foreign, harmful substances. In contrast, very few patients with MLBP are carriers of the HLA-B27 protein.
    Q: What is the treatment for AS?

    Common treatment includes medication, exercise, and in some cases physical therapy. NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are the most common medications used to treat the pain and stiffness for AR. More recently, biologics (aka TNF Blockers) have demonstrated promising results for effectively treating the pain in the joints and spine. Aside from medication and exercise, practicing good posture and applying heat/cold therapy can help to reduce the pain and soreness.

    If you are under 45 and have begun experiencing chronic back pain that worsens with rest, you may have Ankylosing Spondylitis. Schedule an appointment with a rheumatologist to be evaluated for the other signs and symptoms to determine if your back pain is inflammatory rather than mechanical.

    Sources:

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/art.21619/full#tbl1

    http://www.spondylitis.org/about/as_diag.aspx

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003551.htm


    This post was posted in Company

  • Easy Ways to Go Green for Earth Day 2015

    Posted on April 9, 2015 by Core Products

    Earth Day is just around the corner and it’s never too early to start thinking about how we can lessen our impact on the environment and even improve our own health.

    Now, going green is easier than you probably think. Here are a few quick and easy ways to reduce you and your family’s environmental impact as well as your monthly bills! (Who doesn’t like lower bills?)

    Monitor water usage. Every little bit counts, right? Turn off the water while washing dishes or brushing your teeth. If you have a leaky faucet or toilet you could be wasting hundreds of gallons of water. If bottled water is a guilty pleasure, try an at-home filtration system instead to reduce the waste produced from all of that plastic packaging.

    Reduce how often you drive. Staying off the road one or two days a week will greatly reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions you produce. If you have to drive around town, combine your errands into one trip to cut back on time and gas. Think of how much money you’ll save at the pump trying one or both of these!

    Commute without your car. Consider walking, running, or biking to work, class, or wherever else you need to go. This will reduce the amount of greenhouse gases you produce while also getting in some daily exercise (two birds, one stone). If walking or biking is out of the question, public transportation or carpooling are great alternatives.

    R-e-c-y-c-l-e, recycle. Recycling helps reduce pollution and cuts down on the amount of items that end up in our landfills. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of placing recyclable items in a different container or holding onto them for a little bit longer until you come across a recycling bin. When debating between two products in a store, pick the one with less packaging.

    Start composting. Composting biodegradable waste also helps cut down on the amount of amount of items reaching the landfill. Compost is a great natural fertilizer that’ll help lower your landscaping or gardening costs, too.

    There are SO many ways, tips and tricks for one to help out even just a little bit and get involved on Earth Day and beyond. We’ve compiled a few links with some more ideas below:

    http://www.50waystohelp.com/
    http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/a18573/ways-to-go-green/
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/22/easy-ways-to-save-earth_n_5168684.html


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  • Natural Solutions for Allergy Season

    Posted on April 6, 2015 by Core Products

    While most yell “Yipee!” for spring being near, a lot of people start to groan because it also means allergy season is upon us.

    For some, allergies can be worse than the common cold and leave them feeling quite miserable. There are lots of medications to help but for every allergy symptom there is also a natural method for dealing with the discomfort.

    Allergy Symptom: Stuffy Nose

    Natural Solution: Neti Pot. A Neti Pot is an Ayurvedic medical treatment that has been around for a while. The Neti Pot uses a saline solution (distilled water and salt) to rinse the sinuses and keeps the nasal passage moisturized and clear. It can look strange using one but it can also be tremendously helpful.

    Allergy Symptom: Dry, Itchy Eyes

    Natural Solution: Spicy Food. A taste of wasabi will get those eye ducts open and help lubricate dry eyes. There are lots of over the counter lubricating drops as well that help.

    Allergy Symptom: Wheezing/Coughing

    Natural Solution: High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters help keep airborne particulates at bay and lessen breathable allergens in your home.

    Allergy Symptom: Chest Congestion

    Natural Solution: Peppermint herbal tea. Hot steamy peppermint tea can open up the chest and work as a decongestant and expectorant.

    Allergy Symptom: Sleep Problems

    Natural Solution: Sleeping can be uncomfortable and allergies can make you very drowsy. To ensure you have a good nights sleep, try a shower with eucalyptus drops to clear everything before you go to sleep. Also be sure you are aligned properly while sleeping which will help keep your sinuses draining properly and your breathing level. Try the Core Basic Cervical Pillow for optimal sleep comfort.

    Special Note: The buzz about honey and allergies. As the saying goes, if you eat a bit of wild honey native to your local area every day you can become inoculated against the irritating effects of pollen, which should lessen your allergy symptoms. Believe this if you will (and who doesn’t love a bit of honey every day?) as there have been no formal studies to prove this as effective. In theory, if you become used to your local bees’ pollen, you will possibly – over time –have less allergy symptoms. You also would have to consume a tsp of honey every day and like many other natural remedies it takes a while to build up in your system. Whether it works or not, it is not a quick fix or remedy if you are currently suffering from allergies. It’s best to start this method before allergy season is in full swing.


    This post was posted in Company

  • Ideas for Natural Pain Relief

    Posted on April 2, 2015 by Core Products

    Jeanie Rub MassagerNatural methods

    Sometimes all we need to cure what’s ailing us is a bit of good lovin’.

    Core Products offers a wide variety of drug-free ways for natural pain relief and, in a way, provide a bit of self-loving.

    If you’re suffering from headaches, neck strains, back pain, or other aches a cervical support pillow or other type of orthopedic pillow might be all the relief you need. The right pillow for your sleeping style and ailment will help properly align your spine and be a better long-term solution than taking over the counter pain medication night after night.

    Perhaps your ailments are from physical activities like exercise or working on your feet all day. Utilizing some style of personal, at-home massage therapy can do wonders for not only relieving minor aches and pains but also one’s overall happiness and comfort.

    Tennis elbow? Wrist pain? Knee soreness? Ankle issue? Consider picking up an extremity support to help relieve pain and prevent an old injury from becoming a new injury.

    Please visit your doctor if you’re experiencing any acute or long-lasting pain as you may be suffering from something more serious than a cervical pillow can fix. Ask your doctor what he/she recommends and what options are available to you. If you don’t want to simply take oral pain relief

    If your doctor informs you that natural pain relief is an option, visit our website and shop by pain area.


    This post was posted in Company

  • Core Products - Community Partner of the Year 2014

    Posted on March 30, 2015 by Core Products

    Phil Mattison, Core Products International

    Phil Mattison, Core Products International

    Minnesota’s loss; Wisconsin’s gain

    Our next award is a new one for this year – Community Partner of the Year. There are many good choices around Osceola but Phil Mattison and Core Products stood out from the rest for the owner’s and company’s support of community non-profit entities such as the Osceola Medical Center, the OMC Health Foundation, The United Way and specifically, Wheels & Wings. Phil has served on the Osceola Airport Commission for 20 years but he DOES receive reimbursement for that – a whopping $25.00 a year. Since Phil has been on the commission, the airport has been expanded and the number of runways and hangars have doubled. Income has also increased. The commission also operates with a nearly balanced budget each year. Does anyone know the reason whether the commission breaks even on their budget each year or goes over? It’s the amount of snow. If there is less snow, the airport can be used more so income increases.

    Core Products was founded in 1988. Phil’s motivation to choose Osceola as Core’s headquarters was pure and simple – Wisconsin offered a much better business climate with tax incentives in place at the time than Minnesota. Over time, Phil also has come to highly respect the culture and people of our small town. He feels workers here are the best in all regards: they are highly educated, easy to communicate with, have the best work ethic, and they understand the importance of the quality of the product - all of which makes for a positive culture for work. Core Products currently employs a total of 120 employees in plants in Osceola, Chetek and Toronto, Canada. The Toronto company, Therapeutica was a competitor of Core Products and when the owners wanted to retire, Phil purchased the company. They are presently in the process of turning the company over to Core.

    Phil’s journey to his involvement with Wheels & Wings happened over the course of years. He took his first flying lesson at Osceola’s airport and has flown his own plane ever since. Phil has high praise for our airport. It has the best flight school in the area with Woody Minor as a Designated Examiner. This is a BIG deal for the airport reports Phil.

    Several years ago, Phil owned the hangar close to the main parking lot where the Wheels & Wings pancake breakfast was served. Phil was asked if he would allow the hangar to be used for the breakfast. He said sure. That first year, the pancake equipment blew every fuse in the place. The next year, Phil had the hangar rewired to accommodate all the equipment. The breakfast has continued to be a popular event and is still held in that hangar (even though Phil no longer owns it). In 2014, 800 plates of pancakes were served.

    Several years ago when Classic Motorbooks was sold and moved out of Osceola, Phil and Steve Mueller agreed to keep the car show part of Wheels & Wings going. They moved the car show up to the airport. The last year that Motorbooks sponsored the event, an air show was added. Extra ordinances were needed but it proved to be a very popular draw for Wheels & Wings attendees. That year they also wanted to add drag races but could not do that for liability reasons. The radar run was added instead. Now that is one of the most popular offerings at Wheels & Wings.

    Two years ago, Phil realized that more could be done with the air show. He attended the conference of the International Council of Air Shows and learned lots about air shows. For liability concerns, the air show needs to be run by a legal entity. This is why the Wheels & Wings Corp. was founded. Adaw Jarchow, from Baake Norman Law Office provided the legal work necessary and Wheels & Wings, Corp is now organized and has its 501(c) status. The Wheels & Wings Board of Directors includes one member representing the Osceola Chamber of Commerce, the Village of Osceola, Osceola Lion’s Club and the Osceola Airport Commission. The present board is Bob Wolf, ?????? Rod Turner, Bernie Desmarais. It is important to note that Phil is not on the board.

    Last year the Wheels & Wings board was organized but much work still needed to be done to actually host the event. There have been some growing pains with this transition from a small town event into a premier air show. Some are happy with the changes; some are unhappy but to keep the event going, more revenue is needed. 2014 saw an important sponsorship from Central Bank to help fund added traffic control, parking personnel and of course those porta potties. Over 8,000 people attended the event this year. Phil has high praise for Germaine (she is a godsend says Phil) for the hard work and skills she provides. Scott Lindahl is also in need of many thanks for stepping up and developing the new Wheels & Wings website. Thanks to you both.

    Wheels & Wings, Corp volunteers started meeting right away. There are board meetings, weekly meetings, steering committee meetings, and marketing committee meetings. This past year, at least one Wheel & Wings group was meeting every week. Wheels & Wings, Corp is a real entity now and will require more “care and feeding” moving forward but the people and interest are definitely there.

    So what’s the payoff for an event of this magnitude for our small town? Wheels & Wings brings about 10,000 potential customers in the Osceola area. This translates to about four times our population coming into town for one day. What other town can do that? Once people see what we have to offer, they have many reasons to come back. After all, we have great small town appeal, low crime, great schools and a great lifestyle here.

    Phil asks, “How good can we be as using this as an economic development tool?” People come, they stop in stores and restaurants. If you can get people to show up once, it’s much easier to get them to come back a second time. This is a great selling opportunity for Osceola. Demographics show that people who attend air shows are higher educated and have higher incomes. Attractive tax credits also make this a good time for new business in Wisconsin or for businesses to relocate. Phil feels “the airshow is a marketing tool like none other.”

    Phil states: “The Wheels & Wings airshow is how we can make the best Osceola we can make!”

    Many thanks Phil and Core Products for your support of our town and Wheels & Wings.


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  • Healthy Race Preparation Tips for Runners

    Posted on March 26, 2015 by Core Products

    With race season upon us, we compiled a few tips and recommendations for runners who are training or preparing for an upcoming event.

    Fuel your body with the right foods.

    To achieve peak performance, your body needs certain nutrients that will promote bone health and muscle functioning. Here are a few food items to fuel your system when training for a race:

    -  Eggs: The protein in eggs contains all of the critical amino acids that promote muscle recovery after strenuous exercise. Eggs are also a powerhouse for vitamin K, which is essential for maintaining healthy bones.

    -  Sweet Potatoes: Aside from a good source of vitamins A and C, sweet potatoes are rich with potassium, iron, manganese and copper, which are critical for healthy muscle functioning and in turn, help strengthen performance during training and on race day.

    -  Oranges: If you don’t like this vitamin C-packed citrus fruit, consider taking the vitamin in supplement form. Vitamin C has been proven to alleviate muscle soreness after a challenging workout.

    Invest in a pair of properly fitted, supportive running shoes.

    If you’re not already an avid runner, you may not realize the importance of the quality of shoe you train and race in. Not only does proper fit and support matter for comfort and performance; running in old or unsupportive shoes can lead to injury. Get fitted and evaluated by an establishment that specializes in running shoes.

    Don’t skimp on stretching.

    One of the key tips to injury prevention is spending an adequate amount of time stretching after a run. If you have any particularly tight areas, consider getting a massage to relieve the tension, as ignoring it will only increase the likelihood of pulling a muscle.

    Leave yourself a recovery day.

    It can be easy to get carried away in the face of an upcoming race and overstrain your body with long runs and strenuous workouts. However, doing so has more potential to harm than help, as your muscles need sufficient time to recover in order to function at peak performance.

    Incorporate core strength and conditioning into your training plan.

    This is especially important for new runners or people who are pushing new distances. If your body isn’t in proper shape and you push too hard too quickly, there is an increased likelihood that you will only end up injuring yourself. Build up slowly, and work in muscle building exercises for your core to support your running performance and prevent injury.


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  • Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) Tips for Pain Relief

    Posted on March 23, 2015 by Core Products

    Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, commonly known as TMD, TMJ or TMJD, is a group of jaw conditions that causes many of its sufferers a great deal of pain.

    The temporomandibular joint is a hinge that connects your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull and helps you move your jaw. TMD occurs when there is a dysfunction of the connective joints. Symptoms often include:

    -  Pain around your face, jaw or neck area when you chew, talk or open your mouth wide (yawning)
    -  A “locked” jaw feeling
    -  Clicking sounds when you open and close your mouth
    -  Swelling on the side of the face

    Professionals are unsure what causes TMD but contributing factors include grinding teeth at night, clenching down and physical trauma to the jaw (e.g. from an accident or fight).

    Since little is still known about the disorder’s causes, treatments can be challenging. Studies have shown that about 20% of Americans suffer from TMD and most of them are female. There are currently no FDA approved medications specifically for TMD but over the counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like naproxen or ibuprofen, can help relieve some discomfort and swelling.

    If you are having pain and think you may be suffering from TMD, visit your dentist or physician.

    In the meantime, try these self-care habits to help alleviate some of the discomfort.

    -  Eat soft foods
    -  Apply an ice pack or moist heat every 15 minutes (15 on/15 off)
    -  Avoid gum chewing
    -  Avoid wide yawning
    -  Find techniques for relaxing and reducing stress
    -  Try not to let your teeth touch top to bottom as much as you can to relax your jaw
    -  Don’t rest your chin on your hand
    -  If you play contact sports, wear a mouth guard

    Your dentist may prescribe stronger pain anti-inflammatory medications such as muscle relaxants if they feel it is necessary. The most common medical recommendation is an oral appliance or bite guard that you can obtain from your dentist. The bite guard is used at night while sleeping to prevent clamping down or grinding the teeth. When clenched all night the muscles around your joint can become quite inflamed and cause great pain upon waking up.

    Surgical procedures such as jaw replacement and bite realignments have been explored and are practiced by some doctors. Be aware that these procedures are quite controversial and tend to have high risk of complications and irreversible damage.


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  • Dealing with Back Pain

    Posted on March 18, 2015 by Core Products

    Back pain is no minor problem. If you’re experiencing continuous back pain schedule a visit with your doctor as soon as possible.

    For chronic back pain sufferers there are a few options to take that your doctor will probably recommend. The first is a pain reliever or anti-inflammatory to help manage any pain.

    Physical therapy is often beneficial for back pain caused by a pinched nerve. Exercises with the guidance of a professional PT will help strengthen the back and/or core muscles. Taking care of these muscles should help take some of the pressure off of one’s spine and the nerve causing an issue.

    Another option for back pain sufferers is to consider wearing a back brace. Core Products offers a number of back relief options. If you find yourself sitting for long periods of time, a back brace might not be a realistic option. However, something like attaching better lumbar support back cushions to your office chair is a great alternative.

    If something is seriously wrong surgery might be the recommended path. Again, minor back pain? First try some over the counter options to see if it’s a one-time, passing issue. Continuous or sharp, piercing back pain? Please see a doctor.

    No one should have to deal with crippling back pain for the rest of their lives. There are plenty of options available to provide relief from chronic back pain and everyone here at Core Products is more than willing to help you find what’s right for you and your back.


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