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Did you wake up with a scratchy throat?

Maybe you’ve just starting coughing or feel extremely tired for no reason?

Are your kids or people from work getting sick around you?

Well, it’s cold and flu season, which means you might want know the difference between cold and flu symptoms, along with what your treatment options might be. Here are the symptoms, treatment options, and prevention plan for both illnesses:


As the common cold and the flu are both respiratory illnesses, their symptoms are very similar, which can make distinguishing between them very difficult without seeing a medical professional. 

  • Cold: On average, cold symptoms are far milder than flu symptoms. You will develop symptoms gradually and will likely involve a runny or stuffy nose, but will rarely run a fever or suffer from more serious conditions. Other symptoms include a sore throat, sneezing, cold, mild tiredness, and headaches. Colds do not usually result in further complications and will resolve themselves in a few days.  
  • Flu: In general, flu symptoms are more severe and last longer than the common cold. Usually, you will have a fever, cough, sore throat, running nose, body or muscle aches, intense fatigue, headaches, and chills. Unlike a cold, the symptoms come on quickly and can last up to a week or more, though most people start feeling better after two to five days. Severe tiredness can last up to two weeks. It’s important to seek out a help from a medical professional with a flu because this illness can have serious associated complications, such as sinusitis, pneumonia, bronchitis, or ear infections.

Treatment Options

If you think you have the flu instead of a cold, it is essential to get to a medical professional early for testing! The first 24 hours from the onset of flu symptoms is crucial for diagnosis and treatment, as catching it early could significantly shorten the time you are feeling poorly. While you don’t need to seek out medical help for a cold, it is just as important to start treating your cold early as this might shorten the length of the illness. If your cold hasn’t resolved itself in 7-10 days, you should see a doctor. Because the common cold and flu are viral infections, antibiotics are not effective in treating either illness. Here are a few treatment options:

  • Cold: The best treatment option for a cold is getting plenty of rest, lots of fluids, and taking decongestants, pain relievers, or fever reducer medicines. Some people find relief from natural treatment options like vitamin C, zinc, and saline rinses. Hot honey or lemon tea are great for sore throats, while cough drops can help relive cough and throat irritation.
  • Flu: Like having a cold, fluids, rest, and the previously mentioned natural remedies are the best treatment options, along with decongestants, pain relievers or fever reducers. Sometimes, you may be given prescription antiviral drugs in certain cases, but these must be taken within the first 48 hours to work. Talk with a medical professional for more information about treatment options.


To avoid catching the common cold or flu this year, practice good hygiene and avoid being around others who are sick. It’s also best to prevent the flu by getting a flu shot, which not only benefits you, but will protect vulnerable populations around you, such as young children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems. Other prevention options include adopting healthy lifestyle habits by getting plenty of sleep having a well-balanced diet, managing stress, and exercising.

If you or a loved one is sick with the cold or flu, remember to frequently clean any surfaces you or they touch, which include door knobs, the refrigerator door, remote controls, and toilet handles. This will keep the illnesses from spreading to others or giving it back to yourself once you are better!

Take Action

Feel like you’re developing a cold or the flu? Make sure to call Apple Wellness Group at (865) 769-9685 to schedule an appointment today.  Follow us on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram, or subscribe to our Newsletter for more information.



The shoes on your feet are more than just fabric stitched and glued together, they have a life cycle. Whether you are a runner, walker, on your feet working, or simply going from point A to point B, what you wear on your feet is very important. Choosing the right shoe for your biomechanics and knowing the life expectancy of your shoes is crucial for staying injury free and maintaining proper gait.

You, as the consumer, have hundreds of shoe brands to choose from- as if choosing a decent shoe wasn’t hard enough! Focus on comfort, stability, and the overall shape of your foot, not the color or cost- function over fashion! This is a valuable investment and you will save money by preventing injuries which is more beneficial in the long run. Going to a store with a free foot analysis or being fitted by trained employees that put you in the right shoe is a good place to start.

It is important to remember that your feet are your foundation -keeping your feet healthy can help keep you healthy. Our body goes through the complex set of steps that make up our gait (or walking cycle) and the energy from the ground is absorbed and transferred up through the ankles, knees, hips, spine, to the head. If your gait is off you are sending that imbalance all the way up your skeletal structure and causing your body extra strain. Some injuries may come from ignored care to your feet such as shin splints, plantar fasciitis, Iliotibial band syndrome, low back pain, runner’s knee, or joint pain from extra stress.

With every step while walking your shoe is getting an impact of 2-3 times your body weight, and while running, your shoe is getting an impact of 4-5 times your body weight. When your shoes are worn down they are less able to absorb that impact efficiently. This is why most shoes are only projected to last 350-500 miles. Don’t wait until your shoes look like they are on their last leg because by then it is too late.

Signs your shoes are dead:
-Sole tread pattern worn down
– Heel worn more on one side
– Compressed midsoles
– Uppers broken down around the ankle
– Also: try the twist test – if you hold a shoe at both ends and twist, a shoe with no support or even an old shoe will twist easily while a shoe with support and rather new will feel firm. The shoes that twists should be replaced.

So where can you send those old, retired shoes? Nike started the Reuse-a-Shoe program in 1990 and have recycled over 28 million shoes. Just drop off your pair of shoes at a Nike store (7 stores in Tennessee-2 being in Pigeon Forge), and each layer of your shoes donated will be shredded and used for playgrounds, basketball courts, running tracks, and football goal posts! Also, another option if your shoes don’t have too much wear and tear on them is donate them to the Nashville based charity, Soles4Souls, or any other groups with a mission of giving in mind!

If you have any questions about your shoes, don’t be afraid to ask someone in our office! Our providers assess shoes on a daily basis and can give you some great tips for picking out your next pair. We can also build custom orthotics for those who may need a little more support than your regular shoes can provide. Contact our office at 865-524-1234 for more information today!

-Written by Audrey Springer, CTA, CXT


Springtime brings warmer weather, lush green landscapes, and blooming flowers; unfortunately, for many of our patients that also means lots of yard work, joint pain, and back pain. Gardening and yard work often involve repeated lifting, bending, kneeling, and laboring. After a long winter of taking it easy, the sudden increase in workload can be a huge shock to your system which leads to a rise in injury risk.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to reduce your chances of injury. By following these simple steps, you can prevent months of pain and discomfort.

1. Stretch before and after going out. With all of the bending and lifting that come with gardening, it is important to stretch your quads, hip flexors, pecs, and traps. Those muscles do a lot of the work and tend to tighten after overuse.

2. Watch your form. “For hoeing, raking, and leaf blowing, let you power come from your legs instead of your arms,” says physical therapist, Jamie Ligon. “Oftentimes, people make their arms do all of the work when simply shifting back and forth on your legs can keep you from overextending your arms and hurting your shoulders, wrists, and neck.” Also, when lifting, remember to breathe! Exhale as you tighten your tummy to engage your core muscles. “It is vitally important to STABILIZE your trunk before you mobilize your limbs with pushing, pulling, lifting, and lowering objects.”

3. Take a break. It is easy to start a project and not want to break until the job is done; however, that is when you are most vulnerable for injuries. Every 30 minutes, take a water break and check in with your body. Is your heartrate normal? Do you have any extra tension, pain or tingling in your muscles? Scan your body for signs of fatigue before resuming activity. If your vital signs seem off, take a break inside before returning to your project.

4. Gear up. Sometimes preventing injuries is all about having the right gear. Make sure you are wearing supportive shoes that cover your toes and if you are planning on kneeling or lifting, consider additional gear like knee pads, a back brace, or wrist brace. Also, don’t forget about sunscreen!

5. Rest and replenish. Gardening might not feel like exercise but in reality, most people burn anywhere from 200-600 calories an hour when they are working outdoors. Make sure you take some time to rest after your project is done. Apply ice to any muscles or joints that are in pain. Also, consider a high protein snack to replenish lost calories. Don’t forget to drink lots of water!

Follow these steps to avoid gardening injuries. If you have suffered from a yard work injury, contact our office as soon as possible. By treating the pain early, we can help calm the problem before it gets worse.

Remember, it can take several days for muscle soreness and joint pain to pop up after overexerting yourself. If you find that you are in pain several days after your workout, it could still be from a gardening injury. Come in and let us help you get back to the projects you enjoy!

-Written by Hope Ealey


If you want to track your calories, analyze your sleep, or check the number of steps you take in a day, you have probably considered a wearable activity tracker at some point. Even if you don’t own a piece of wearable technology – a smart device worn on the wrist or clothing- you have probably seen one. These activity trackers have taken the world by storm with their ability to measure key health factors.

The most popular and well known wearables are the FitBit, Jawbone UP, and Nike+. 71% of Americans who have a wearable claim the technology has improved their health -this fad may have potential! Most models on the market can track your heart rate, calories, sleep patterns, and steps taken, while some of the more expensive models have GPS, text messaging, email, and blood oxygen monitors. A large portion of these also have Bluetooth so you can connect your cellphone for visual tracking and long-term goal setting. WARNING: Do not let the extra features stray you from the reason you bought a wearable in the first place. These devices were intended for weight loss, physical fitness, or stress management and even the basic wearable has all those capabilities.

It is safe to say 2015 is going to be the biggest year for these activity trackers and smart devices, as 68.1 million are projected to be sold by the end of the year. The challenge with these is connecting our fixation of recording information and changing our behavior. According to The Journal of the American Medical Association, linking the gap between the data and our behavior determines whether or not your money is well spent. When you have your plan of action and health goals already, using the wearable device as a motivating factor and not the solution is going to be your best bet. These devices make you more aware of your food intake when you have to actually log the calories or they make you take that extra walk at night to reach your step goals for the day. Simply, the value comes from the information from the device and what you decide to do with it.

The future for wearables is looking to reach high levels with new technologies still developing. Hopefully in the near future, diabetics will be able to check their blood sugar levels through their skin without pricking themselves multiple times a day. Also, this year Apple Inc. is releasing their first wearable that will include a built-in health coach. Wearable activity trackers have so much potential; however, it is important to remember that all of these fancy features do not change the fact that, just like a gym membership, it only works if you use it.

If you would like more information about how you can get started with a medically-managed exercise routine, contact our office by calling 865.524.1234. Many of our staff members use wearables in and out of the office and we can help you set up a workout routine that includes your wearable.

-Written by Audrey Springer, CTA, CXT

Western Ave. / I-640

4307 Ball Camp Pike
Knoxville, TN 37921
Office: (865) 524-1234
Fax: (865) 524-2169

Monday: 8am - 5:30pm
Tuesday: 7am - 5:30pm
Wednesday: 7am - 11:30am
Thursday: 7am - 5:30pm
Friday: 7am - 5:30pm
Saturday: 8am - 11am
Sunday: Closed

Cedar Bluff

312 Prosperity Drive
Suite 101
Knoxville, TN 37923
Office: (865) 691-3155
Fax: (865) 694-8093

Monday: 8am - 5:30pm
Tuesday: 7am - 5:30pm
Wednesday: 2pm - 5:30pm
Thursday: 8am - 5:30pm
Friday: 7am - 5:30pm 312 Prosperity Drive
Suite 101
Knoxville, TN 37923
Office: (865) 691-3155
Fax: (865) 694-8093

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