Are you experiencing pain after an injury or general, unexplained discomfort that includes stiffness and aching muscles. Then a course of physical therapy treatments may help to restore your body’s movements and functions to normal. Physiotherapy covers the treatment of a wide range of problems and disorders to help restore mobility and flexibility to the body.
What is Physiotherapy?
Physiotherapy is a practice that helps in diagnosing, assessing, and treating the symptoms of an injury, illness, or disability by physical methods and techniques. Physical therapy involves exercise movements with or without special equipment along with education on how to improve the physical function of the body and motivation for rehabilitation from mobility disorders caused by an injury, disability, or illness.
Physiotherapists mainly treat injuries in order to reduce pain in the tissues and bones of the body but also to improve the physical function of the body in order to achieve overall health and well-being. They are trained to help an individual regain and maintain various body functions and movements after injury, long illness, or due to disability. Their knowledge includes science disciplines like anatomy (the structures of the body), physiology (how the body functions), and neuroscience (the study of the nervous system). They have the skills and knowledge essential for the diagnosis and treatment of physical disorders and the prevention of physical injuries.
How Can Physiotherapy Help You?
The wide scope of physiotherapy means it can help people of all ages from infants to the elderly to recover from a wide range of physical ailments. Some of the benefits include:
– Orthopedic disorders, sports injuries, spinal issues, fractures, and headaches are some of the most common types of problems physiotherapists treat on a daily basis in clinical settings.
– Problems related to the joints, muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons of the body.
– Neurological disorders of the brain and spinal cord such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, cerebral palsy, stroke, and spinal cord injury. Physical therapy sessions can help patients to obtain muscle control, and fine and gross motor skills to slowly restore body functions until strength, mobility, and flexibility are obtained.
– Cardio diseases can be managed by physical therapy. The heart and lungs respond well to physiotherapy intervention with guided exercise and resistance training for patients with shortness of breath or decreased endurance.
– Therapeutic exercises, manipulation, and soft tissue massage during physiotherapy treatments can help improve endurance, range of movement, muscular imbalances, mobility, and postural imbalances.
– Physical therapy may include trigger point therapy and stretching to relieve pain and stiffness.
– Children with cerebral palsy can benefit from physical therapy as it helps to reduce spasticity and improve postural control. It includes the use of assistive devices to maximize functional independence. Therapy sessions also include educating family members to help sustain at home what has been learned during therapy.
As can be seen, there are many advantages to physiotherapy but there are a few disadvantages:
– Some patients experience a certain amount of pain during therapy depending on the type of problem being addressed
-Swelling or inflammation from stretching the muscles and tendons may be uncomfortable but normal as the body is known to respond by increasing blood flow and fluid (edema). Ice packs can help to reduce the swelling.
– Results cannot be completely guaranteed and many patients stop treatment when they don’t see results. This could cause re-injury and pain. It is recommended to persevere for the duration of the treatment period.
– A long-term period of physiotherapy can become expensive.
– Long-term treatment and the pain involved can increase stress levels in some patients.
– Some elderly patients with physical disorders may not be able to perform the prescribed exercises due to their age and body limitations.
We hope the above information has highlighted the advantages of physiotherapy and how it can benefit you, whether you have a physical problem or would simply like to improve your physical flexibility and mobility for health or sports reasons.