Sunflower Health & Wellness’ Unique Approach

Sunflower Health & Wellness, founded by Brenda Stephens, combines traditional medicine with complementary therapies to treat the whole person–body, mind, and spirit. SHWC takes a more holistic approach to caring for patients and requires the active participation of the patient towards their healing. Dr. Brian Paris sits down with Brenda Stephens to learn more about her unique practice.

Dr. Paris: Can you share the history of the creation of Sunflower Health & Wellness?

Brenda Stephens: I am a family nurse practitioner who provides primary care, as well as a certified clinical aromatherapist. I wanted to combine the two into one practice, so I started SHWC in October of 2014.

Dr. Paris: Does Sunflower Health & Wellness accept insurance?

Brenda Stephens: Yes, we accept most major commercial insurances like BCBS, Cigna, Aetna as well as Medicare & Medicaid.

Dr. Paris: What are integrative medical therapies?

Brenda Stephens: Integrative medical therapies combine traditional allopathic treatments with complementary alternative therapies to treat a number of different conditions.

Dr. Paris: What is a “green” patient?

Brenda Stephens: A “green” patient is one that is very concerned about their health & wellness, preferring to use alternative therapies as opposed to allopathic medicines.    

Dr. Paris: Our culture is riddled with chronic diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and obesity. How does your practice differ from the traditional approach to treating these common conditions?

Brenda Stephens: At Sunflower Health & Wellness, we approach chronic disease from three different perspectives: medical, nutrition and emotional. We aim to help patients find out why they are overweight and work towards solutions to help them lose that weight permanently.  

Dr. Paris: Our current nutritional paradigm is a major factor in keeping people sick, overweight and unhealthy. What is the underlying philosophy of your nutrition program and why does it work?  

Brenda Stephens: Our nutrition program is intended to be individual and focus on whole, natural foods that are healthy and appealing, which makes it much easier to stick to the program. We really work together as practitioners to help the patient on their weight loss journey, customizing our programs to help the patient reach their weight loss goals.

Dr. Paris: What other conditions do you treat at Sunflower Health & Wellness?

Brenda Stephens: We are especially interested in patients with insomnia, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia which are all conditions that can be difficult to treat allopathically. We use essential oils, acupuncture, massage, nutrition counseling, reflexology and sometimes medications to treat these conditions.

Advanced Wellness Systems is dedicated to empowering patients to live more active and healthy lifestyles, regardless of where they are in their personal journey. Call (301) 710-9777 to schedule an appointment today.

Dr. Brian Paris Examines “Healthy Baller”

Dr. Brian Paris of Advanced Wellness Systems sits down with Blair O’Donovan, Co-Owner and Lead Trainer of Healthy Baller, to get the inside scoop on the state-of-the-art sports performance center that has a fresh take on training student athletes in Montgomery County.

Healthy Baller specializes in performance testing, training and nutrition, but Blair says what makes the performance center so unique is Healthy Baller’s personal, hands-on approach. “Part of working as a Healthy Baller team member is you have to know every little bit about your athlete, what their goals are and what their direction is,” Blair explains. Much like Dr. Paris, Blair is passionate about creating strong bonds and relationships with his clients at Healthy Baller — forming a “Healthy Baller tree,” as he calls it.

Blair and his Healthy Baller team also implement a dynamic training method, that prioritizes movement over weightlifting and bodybuilding. “We want movement to be a high priority here. Because if the kids are moving well, they’ll have a much less chance of being injured,” says Blair. Dr. Paris agrees, noting that although there are more trainers, knowledge and fancy equipment available in 2016, he sees more injuries today than ever before.

Over the last several years, Advanced Wellness Systems and Healthy Baller have developed a strong relationship, due in part to the value both Dr. Paris and Blair place on heart and hustle. “If there’s an [injury related] issue that we just are not familiar with or just feel like it needs a higher level of attention, the first call we make is to Advanced Wellness,” says Blair. “I’ve never experienced any group treat pain and treat clients as comprehensively as I’ve seen done there.”
Watch the full Healthy Baller interview here to learn how the sports performance center is bringing athletic training to a whole new level.

Knee Surgery Not Best Solution to Relieve Pain

A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine reveals that knee surgery combined with physical therapy provides no better relief of knee pain symptoms than physical therapy alone. The study involved participants who presented symptoms of a degenerative meniscus tear. Half of the patients underwent surgery, while the remaining participants experienced a sham procedure. The results? Patients who received the meniscus surgery reported no greater improvement than those who received the placebo procedure.

In the past, surgery was the best option to eliminate knee pain, but now there is a better alternative. Our “I HATE KNEE PAIN” program is designed to relieve knee pain quickly and effectively, while keeping our patients out of the operating room. This non-surgical treatment uses an all natural substance that is injected into the knee joint using a state-of-the-art Diagnostic Imaging device. This device allows the substance to be placed into the area surrounding the knee joint with 95% accuracy, resulting in significant knee pain relief with zero recovery time. This FDA approved procedure has revolutionized the way that knee pain is treated and prevents patients from going under the knife.

At Advanced Wellness Systems, we put our patients first with integrative, hands-on care. Our I HATE KNEE PAIN treatment program is tailored specifically to your needs so we can help you reach your health and wellness goals as quickly and effectively as possible.

If you suffer from knee pain give us a call at 301-710-9777 and schedule an appointment today.  

Dr. Paris Discusses Benefits of Massage Therapy with Dana Durand

Dr. Brian Paris, licensed Physical Therapist at Advanced Wellness Systems, partners with Dana Durand, Licensed Massage Therapist, at Dana Durand Massage to provide patients with a full spectrum of wellness expertise.

Dr. Paris: What are some of the benefits of massage therapy?

Dana Durand: There are numerous benefits to receiving massage therapy that go far beyond relaxation. Many studies demonstrate that massage is an effective treatment for reducing pain, stress, and muscle tension. Some other benefits include:

  • Promotes muscle relaxation and increases flexibility and range of motion.
  • Helps improve circulation, which promotes healing and aids in recovery.
  • Decreases anxiety, depression, blood pressure, cramping and muscle spasms.
  • Increases energy levels, reduces fatigue, and enhances quality of sleep.
  • Strengthens the body’s immune system by stimulating lymph flow.

Dr. Paris: How can massage therapy help facilitate rehabilitation from surgery or injury?

Dana Durand: Countless studies have proven that massage therapy helps to accelerate surgical recovery, promoting healing and reducing pain and soreness from a recent surgery. Massage helps bring blood and nutrients to the affected area to repair soft tissue. It can also help to break up scar tissue and keep muscles supple to limit the development of scar tissue. Massage assists the body in pumping more oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, while creating a pain-blocking sensation due to endorphin-like chemicals that are released by the body. Massage therapy also strengthens the immune system, which helps prevent post-surgical infections.

Dr. Paris: What have your patients said about the benefits they’ve experienced from massage therapy?

Dana Durand: My patients see real results from massage therapy. Here’s an example:

“I have been seeing Dana regularly for frozen shoulder. I was dealing with intense pain, a total lack of range of motion, and many sleepless nights. massage therapy, in conjunction with physical therapy have changed my life! After just a few sessions with Dana I noticed a complete difference.” ~Ray S.

Dr. Paris: What has your Advanced Wellness experience been like as a client or as a referral partner?

Dana Durand: Advanced Wellness Systems’ staff has been a pleasure to work with! They are very attentive, professional, and go above and beyond to make you feel comfortable.

Advanced Wellness Systems is dedicated to empowering patients to live more active and healthy lifestyles. Making massage a part of your self-care routine can contribute to your overall well-being and help improve and maintain your health. Call (301) 710-9777 to schedule an appointment today.

Andrew Bloch Talks RPT™ with Sweat RX

Sweat RX Magazine sits down with Advanced Wellness Systems co-owner Andrew Bloch to discuss how his unique pain-relief technique, Reflexive Pattern Therapy™, helped the 12 Labours CrossFit team make it all the way to the 2015 CrossFit World Games.

New to many, RPT™ is a pain relief treatment that uses reflexes as a tool to correct patterns in the autonomous nervous system, Bloch explains to Sweat RX. The technique delivers fast, pressurized contact movements to problem areas, evoking a reflex that provides immediate pain relief.

But Bloch isn’t the only proponent of Reflexive Pattern Therapy™, Sweat RX learns. CrossFit competitor, Teresa Luz believes she never would have made it to the 2015 CrossFit Games if it wasn’t for RPT™. After pulling a ligament in her lower back while performing a deadlift at the Crossfit Atlanta regionals, Teresa found herself in excruciating pain. And with the Crossfit Games just 6 weeks away, Teresa was in a tight spot.

That was, until she found RPT™. After the first session, Teresa’s mobility improved by 60-70% and with continued treatment, she was able to compete with her team in the Crossfit Games and even made it to the World Games. Teresa’s recovery was one of many remarkable comebacks thanks to RPT™, and was even featured in The Washington Post.

Intrigued by Teresa’s story, the Sweat RX interviewer hopped on the table to give RPT™ a try himself. Just like Teresa, he was relieved of his troublesome pain almost immediately.

If you missed Bloch’s interview with Sweat RX, you can find it here.

The Peak Scoliosis Bracing System™

Do You Suffer From Any of the Following? If so, you could have adult scoliosis and the Peak Scoliosis Bracing System™ could be the solution. 

  • Lower Back Pain
  • Difficulty Breathing
  • Weakness, Numbness or Pain in the lower extremities
  • Feeling as though your body is twisted
  • Feeling as though one shoulder / hip is higher than another
  • Clothing doesn’t fit properly

You could be one of 6 million people suffering from adult scoliosis in the United States. A simple scoliosis screening, offered for free at Advanced Spine & Wellness Center, can determine whether or not you have scoliosis and help you on your way to treatment and relief.

Advanced Spine & Wellness Center also offers a breakthrough solution to debilitating pain caused by adult scoliosis. The Peak Scoliosis Bracing System™ is an unloader brace designed to relieve pain and enhance the quality of life for individuals diagnosed with adult scoliosis. This patented, highly adjustable brace improves posture, enhances mobility and ultimately increases the ability to perform daily activities. Here’s how it works:

Peak Scoliosis Features

Call (301) 710-9777 or click here to fill out an appointment request to schedule your free adult scoliosis screening at Advanced Spine & Wellness Center today.

On Air: RPT™ Strikes Again, Literally

Slapping pain away might sound contradictory, but Reflexive Pattern Therapy™ is a treatment that does just that. On Good Morning Washington, NewsChannel 8 reporter Eileen Whelan takes a closer look at the one-of-a-kind treatment with RPT™ creator Andrew Bloch, who uses gentle slapping, smacking and prodding to relieve chronic pain.

Whelan describes RPT™ as “a breakthrough treatment for pain” and watches as Andrew treats one of his clients, former NCAA basketball player Jon Larranaga. Before meeting Bloch and discovering RPT™, Larranaga suffered from chronic hip pain for a dozen years. Larranaga tells Whelan that “after seeing Andy for really the first treatment, the pain went away.” He goes on to describe RPT™ saying, “It looks weird, it sounds weird, but it works.”

Bloch tells Whelan about how the unusual treatment works and makes such a big difference. Bloch says “I discovered these involuntary pain patterns in the body, and once I treat them I kind of reset the neurological system, almost like a computer or phone. Once you reset that, the pain is relieved almost immediately.” Essentially, RPT™ is a fascinating solution for anyone who wants pain relief to be as easy as pressing a button. Of course, pressing that button might mean taking a little bit of light smacking.

On air, Whelan is so intrigued by RPT™ ,that she decides to test it out herself. After experiencing the full RPT™ treatment, Whelan is shocked by how well it works. Watch the video below:

In the Media: RPT™ Creator Andrew Bloch

Andrew Bloch, DOM, MSPT, ATC knows pain and how to treat it. His breakthrough Reflexive Pattern Therapy™ treatment relieves pain in patients from age six to 102. Bloch tells Today in PT how he’s successfully combined physical therapy and acupuncture to treat even the most debilitating pain immediately.

RPT™ is based on the principles of Eastern medicine. Bloch looks for reactive points that correlate with where the patient is feeling pain. Once he identifies the reactive points, Bloch activates reflexive energy, which, in turn, alleviates the pain. “If you have back pain, I would never touch your back to get rid of your pain,” notes Bloch.

When illustrating the complexity of RPT™ to his patients, Bloch compares the treatment to a light bulb. “If your back pain is a light bulb that is not working, most people work on the light bulb,” explains Bloch. “I treat the light switch.” This method resets the body and provides long-lasting relief.

Reflexive Pattern Therapy™ is exclusively offered at Advanced Wellness Systems in Rockville, MD. Read Bloch’s full interview on www.TodayInPT.com.

ABC 7: Using Physical Therapy to Cope with Chronic Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease is on the rise, putting health officials on high alert. The infectious disease is transmitted to humans through the bite of a tiny deer tick. It starts off as a bulls-eye rash for some, but other early symptoms include fever, headache, and tiredness, The scariest symptom however, is that the disease often goes undiagnosed.

This was the case for Kathy Fowler Silverstein, who suffered from the frightening disease for 15 years before finally being properly diagnosed in 2006. She was featured on ABC 7 News to discuss her terrible experience with the debilitating disease. At her worst moments, Kathy felt “extremely fatigued, couldn’t get out of bed, couldn’t think” and at times “couldn’t even remember things.”

Now, she manages her illness by receiving physical therapy twice a week from Dr. Brian Paris of Advanced Wellness Systems. The physical therapy from Dr. Paris, combined with eating well and keeping stress-free, has Kathy living a relatively healthy life again.

Every year, about 300,000 cases of Lyme Disease are reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Maryland saw an increase in reported cases from 801 in 2013 to 1,373 in 2014, while Virginia saw a similar rise from 925 to 1,346 cases.

While the reasons for the recent spike in reported Lyme disease cases are relatively unknown, some experts think warmer temperatures are improving tick survival. Others believe that improved awareness has led to more diagnoses.

If you find a tick on your body, save it in a bag or container so that it can be tested for Lyme disease. The tests to see if the tick has the disease are much more accurate than the tests to see if the disease has been transmitted to you.