Creating a clinic like Reactivate Muskoka has been a career dream for Drs. Chad Barber and Rich Trenholm.
The two recently moved the clinic to a larger facility at 10 Howland Drive.
“We worked on this for years. It took a long time to get to this point but we wanted it to be the right team and the right personalities together, which we have now,” says Dr. Barber. “The idea is to be able to offer each patient exactly what they need under one roof. Our treatment plans are more efficient this way because we each have a specific skill set and if we use that efficiently it works out in favour of the patient. When you have someone in a lot of pain, where they want to get back to a specific activity, different phases of that process might fit different disciplines of healthcare. We have the ability to transition somebody from one to the other in the most effective way to maximize the positive outcome.”
The patients at Reactivate Muskoka are diverse and so are their treatment plans.
“Not everybody is a high-end athlete and not everybody is an athlete but we have the same message: movement is medicine,” says Dr. Barber. “We have patients who come in with sports injury, we have patients who come in with chronic posture-related issues, some people just want to move better, some people want to feel healthier and stronger, and some people are just in acute pain. Diversity is a key component to how we operate.”
The team of chiropractors, physiotherapists, registered massage therapists, and sports medicine physicians all have the same vision of a non-intimidating environment, where the patients feel comfortable asking questions and feel like they’re part of the care.
“We want to work with the patient and have them involved with the process,” says Dr. Barber. “We’ve built this space because we want to engage beyond the rehabilitation and offer programming that will cater to all members of the population. We created the space to be really diverse as well. We have a lot of ideas on programming and that’ll be the next step.”
Sometimes people can be nervous if they’re referred to a chiropractor, but Dr. Barber says it’s worth a consult.
“We have such a vast skill set that we can always come up with a treatment program that would suit the patient’s comfort level,” he says. “Rather than live in pain, I think it’s worth trying to see if we can find something that would help.”
For Dr. Travis Bissonette, it was a Grade 10 career class that set him on the path to becoming a chiropractor with Reactivate Muskoka.
After a chiropractor spoke to his class, Dr. Bissonette shadowed the doctor in the workplace. Dr. Bissonette liked how he interacted with patients and explained how the hands-on treatment could relieve their pain.
“I’ve always been interested in the human body and how to help it heal,” he says. “It’s important to take the time to listen to people and explain what you think is going on with them and how you can help.”
Dr. Bissonette describes chiropractic treatment as a way to relieve pain in the muscles, joints, and nerves through hands-on treatment, along with exercise.
“Our main focus is chiropractic manipulation of the joints, which is a great way to help you move better and feel better,” he says. “If a patient is nervous, one thing they can count on is a chiropractor is going to take the time to listen to your story to understand what you’re nervous about. We always do things with the patient’s consent. You’re in the driver’s seat. We’re the coach and we’re in this journey together to help you feel and move better. We don’t always have to utilize adjustments, we do a lot of muscle work as well and different stretching techniques and exercises.”
Dr. Bissonette says patients can feel confident they’re getting the care they need with the variety of services available at Reactivate Muskoka.
“It’s a really collaborative team and I think the patients benefit from that,” he says. “It’s nice to have everything our patients need under one roof.”
The Reactivate team recently welcomed Dr. Megan Fisher. A recent graduate from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College in Toronto, following a Kinesiology degree from Queen’s University, she provides traditional and sports chiropractic treatments, medical acupuncture, and soft tissue release.
“My treatment philosophy emphasizes the importance of engaging patients in their own care through education and exercise-based medicine,” she says. “I work with my patients to come up with an individualized treatment plan that fits their needs, combining manual techniques including soft tissue therapies, joint mobilization/manipulation, and/or acupuncture with active care and therapeutic exercise.”
She is a certified strength and conditioning specialist and frequently works with young athletes.
“While athletes of all ages are susceptible to injury, young athletes in particular are constantly growing and going through changes that may alter their movement mechanics. As athletes age and their sport demands increase, these altered movement patterns can lead to poor performance and injury,” notes Dr. Fisher. “Getting assessed by a chiropractor, physiotherapist, or other movement specialist can be a proactive way to identify and correct biomechanical insufficiencies, and to build strength and movement patterns that support the demands being put on the athlete.”
Dr. Fisher knew she wanted to start her career “in a multidisciplinary, collaborative setting where I had the opportunity to learn from and work with other clinicians, and Reactive fits that bill perfectly. There is so much depth and diversity to the team of practitioners and movement specialists, and the movement-based medicine model of treatment suits my background and practice style perfectly.”
To learn more about Reactivate Muskoka’s chiropractic team and services, visit reactivatemuskoka.com.
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