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Samantha (Sam) Bassett’s not sure how or even if she injured her lower back, but several years ago, it began to hurt. She saw the doctor and found out that she had two herniated discs — at L5 and S1. They are the lowest parts of the spine and bear the most weight, which means they’re most at risk of degenerating or being injured.

At the time, she was taking a gentle yoga class at Jade Integrated Health in Portland, Maine. “The only time I felt relief from pain was in yoga,” she told me. “We’d do legs up the wall with the bolster and Lauren, the instructor, was helping me do very gentle things to keep my body moving.”

She stayed under the care of her doctor and getting physical therapy, but only yoga seemed to ease her pain. She was also on 800 milligrams of Ibuprofen every day, which upset her stomach. A shot of cortisone directly into her spine hurt so much she was referred to a back specialist. “He said you need surgery, you need to have your cartilage removed and your bones fused,” Sam said. “I thought that sounded like a horrible idea. I just didn’t want to do it.”

New business in Brunswick

- JULIETTE LAAKA, The Times Record

A new business has opened in Brunswick that offers a mix of Eastern and Western medicines to focus on a mind-body health connection.

Husband and wife team, John and Nancy Charlebois, who live in Cape Elizabeth and have operated a 16-year practice in Portland, offering acupuncture and physical therapy, have opened Jade Integrated Health at 12 Windorf Circle.

Check Out John & Nancy’s News Center 6 Segment!


Fit at Five: Fabulous over 50

Kelly Labrecque, WCSH

(NEWS CENTER) — It’s one of the most versatile and effective forms of exercise for women 50 plus.
It’s Yoga– and– it can help men and women stay fit and trim and well as strong and relaxed.