By: Coco Ang, PT
Physiotherapy is used to help people regain mobility and move around as they used to before they developed conditions that limited their functionality. Physiotherapy involves exercise therapy, electrotherapy and muscle manipulation to reduce discomfort and immobility associated with surgery and a range of illnesses.
There is no specific medical reason why people ought to go to physiotherapy; it is designed to improve quality of life and help maintain health even if you have not been diagnosed with mobility issues. Common physiotherapy programs include:
- Customized exercise regimes designed to improve strength, range of motion, and functioning
- Mobilizing and manipulating joints to reduce pain and stiffness
- Techniques to manage breathing conditions, fatigue and pain management
- Skin and wound care
- Retraining and improving tolerance through comprehensive testing
- Providing equipment to overcome physical impairments.
Physiotherapy is immensely beneficial in preventing the onset of many injuries and illnesses. Recent developments in standards of physiotherapy have incorporated multi-dimensional approaches to educate, along with creating specialized exercise plans to reduce the risk of developing health conditions.
Physiotherapy is most commonly used to treat musculoskeletal conditions that stem from overuse of and injury to muscles, ligaments, tendons and bones. Athletes in particular are at high risk of orthopaedic trauma and would deeply benefit from physiotherapy.
Methods of treating orthopaedic trauma through physiotherapy include:
- Massage therapy
- Shockwave therapy
- Manual therapy
Common conditions that physiotherapy may help with are:
Lower Back Pain Management
25% of all Canadians have experienced lower back pain at some point in their lives. Research indicates that the use of physiotherapy in addition to educational programs can help reduce the prevalence of Lower Back Pain and relieve chronic back pain in the short term.
Ankle and Foot Injuries
The feet and ankle are the most injury prone areas for athletes. Those who have experienced injuries of either of the two body parts would understand that even though these are not life threatening, they develop into chronic conditions that are difficult to recover from. Physiotherapy allows successful rehabilitation for those who have suffered injuries in these areas to restore full functionality.
Orthopaedic problems such as: Achilles Tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, ankle sprains and heel spurs are very easily treated through careful and consistent physiotherapy.
Knee injuries are the most likely to develop into chronic conditions that leave people with long lasting mobility issues. For conditions such as ligament tears and tendon lesions, the reconstruction after operation leaves the muscle weakened and incapable of proper activation.
Physiotherapists can recommend exercise regimens that would allow the muscle to regain strength and help improve overall functionality.
Tennis elbow is a commonly occurring condition that causes pain in the elbow, due to an inflammation of tendons in around the elbow. There is little consensus on how to best effectively manage the condition; however, the use of physiotherapy in the form of massage and customized exercise regimens that include stretching and strength training have shown to be some of the more effective treatment methods.
Sports & Exercise Medicine Institute clinics are greater Toronto area based sports medicine, physiotherapy and massage therapy clinics that offer a wide range of services such as sports medicine physicians, Electroshock therapy and massage therapy, among others.