“Take time out of our day to decompress and find the best outlet for you.”, With Dr. Sarkis Bedikian

Manage stress — take time out of our day to decompress and find the best outlet for you. We all need something different, whether it be exercising at the gym, reading or yoga. Dr. Sarkis Bedikian is an Orthopaedic Surgeon at MidAmerica Orthopaedics. He believes in doing all he can in the pursuit of returning […]

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Manage stress — take time out of our day to decompress and find the best outlet for you. We all need something different, whether it be exercising at the gym, reading or yoga.

Dr. Sarkis Bedikian is an Orthopaedic Surgeon at MidAmerica Orthopaedics. He believes in doing all he can in the pursuit of returning his patients to a full, active lifestyle. Whether the issue is a worn hip or knee in need of replacement or revision, Dr. Bedikian strives to dramatically improve the quality of life for his patients. He views himself as a partner and counselor in helping his patients achieve their optimum health and sense of well-being.

Dr. Bedikian earned his doctorate in osteopathic medicine from Midwestern University/Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine, where he also completed an Osteopathic residency and Orthopedic Surgery internship. Additionally, he has completed an Adult Reconstruction Fellowship at the University of Chicago. Dr. Bedikian has published numerous orthopedic papers and received honors and awards including recognition for medical leadership, induction into academic honor societies and graduating summa cum laude from Wayne State University. He is professionally affiliated with the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the Illinois Osteopathic Medical Society and the American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopedics, among others.

Thank you for joining us! Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?

Early on in my career, I once had a 90-year-old patient with two different joint problems at the same time — a prosthetic hip dislocation and a loose knee replacement. This was a complex problem because at her age, joint replacement surgery is very high-risk, and I had never operated on two joints at once. As we live longer and longer, it’s a new challenge to take care of an older patient with a without risking injury or death. After consulting with her family, I was able to perform a successful surgery without any complications. The surgery allowed her to sit in a chair more comfortable and it was a blessing in disguise that everything went perfectly.

Can you share with our readers a bit about why you are an authority in the fitness and wellness field? In your opinion, what is your unique contribution to the world of wellness?

My unique contribution to the world of wellness stems from what I hear from my patients all the time — they say I’m open, honest and I communicate with them, and that’s what they look for the most in a doctor. When they come and see me, they get complete honesty on their situation and how to resolve it, and I try to give them as much information as they can to make an informed decision. It makes them feel comfortable how I answer their questions because doctors often don’t communicate very well. In today’s day and age, face-to-face communication can be a challenge especially in the way we rely on social media.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

Over the course of my life, I’ve had several people who’ve helped me get to where I am today. When I was younger it was my family, during training it was my mentor, and now in private practice, I have my wife to discuss day to day issues with and help me think about how patients are feeling. The orthopedic stuff isn’t the hard stuff, it’s really a challenge to communicate with my patients and help them make the best decisions. It’s been a process throughout my life and career to not only have people to look up to but also people to lean on.

We all know that it’s important to eat more vegetables, eat less sugar, exercise more, and get better sleep etc. But while we know it intellectually, it’s often difficult to put it into practice and make it a part of our daily habits. In your opinion what are the 3 main blockages that prevent us from taking the information that we all know, and integrating it into our lives?

Three things that are the biggest challenges for people looking to form new healthy habits include a lack of knowledge or understanding what the barriers are that are preventing us from forming this new habit. Second, access is often a challenge — people have to ask themselves: with my income can I sustain a better lifestyle and incorporate this into my life and my family? Overall, the biggest challenge for patients is a lack of support, it can be easier to do something with a partner, and it’s tough to start something new on your own.

Can you please share your “5 Non-Intuitive Lifestyle Tweaks That Will Dramatically Improve One’s Wellbeing”? (Please share a story or an example for each, and feel free to share ideas for mental, emotional and physical health.)

  1. The most important lifestyle tweak is to take care of your body because then your body will take care of you. We need nutrients to get any result we’re seeking — both mentally and physically.
  2. Recognizing a problem early on and seeking medical help. People are often hesitant to go to the doctor, whether they are too proud or overwhelmed at the idea of finding someone they can trust.
  3. Research is important. Before starting a new diet or supplement you should do the research — ask your doctor and get other opinions.
  4. Manage stress — take time out of our day to decompress and find the best outlet for you. We all need something different, whether it be exercising the gym, reading or yoga.
  5. Exercise — make sure you can stay active to decompress, burn calories and maintain overall health. Our bodies are made to move. Figure out your outlet and try to enjoy it.

As an expert, this might be obvious to you, but I think it would be instructive to articulate this for the public. Aside from weight loss, what are 3 benefits of daily exercise? Can you explain?

The first benefit of exercise is mental. It helps you decrease stress and clear your head. Another benefit is the pure enjoyment of your activity, such as playing a sport like a tennis or bowling. A third benefit is the maintenance of your body — we have joints and our joints want to move! If you feel you’ve been pressing pause on your life and physical activity because of joint pain, it’s important to take action and address it. On, you can learn about treatment options to manage your pain and resume the things you love to do.

For someone who is looking to add exercise to their daily routine, which 3 exercises would you recommend that are absolutely critical for someone experiencing joint pain in their hip and/or knee?

  1. Stair climbing — it helps to strengthen the quads and hamstrings
  2. Walking — it’s a simple way to get moving.
  3. Sitting and standing exercises — it’s important to incorporate exercises the strengthen the back and core

In my experience, many people begin an exercise regimen but stop because they get too sore afterwards. What ideas would you recommend to someone who plays sports or does heavy exercise to shorten the recovery time, and to prevent short term or long term injury?

The most important thing to consider for prevention of injury is to stretch before and after a workout. Strength training is also important because we lose muscle condition as we age. Overall, people should look for exercise routines — like daily stretching — that is easily incorporated into their everyday routines. It’s important not to neglect your core. The core helps us with everything from standing straight, walking, sitting to sleeping

There are so many different diets today. Can you share what kind of diet you follow? Which diet do you recommend to most of your clients?

The most important thing is to have a healthy diet overall. Especially when healing our bodies from surgery, we need to support our bodies with enough nutrients and hydration. For high-risk patients, I recommend that they address their overall well-being and make lifestyle changes before surgery.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?

My motto is, “If I take care of my body, my body will take care of me.” I’m human and there are days where I don’t do these things, and I try to take care of myself despite a busy schedule.

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