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Physiotherapy (PT) helps people recover from surgery, an accident or injury. PT also helps when a person’s body is not functioning at what is considered normal for them—perhaps they had a heart attack, stroke or fall; or are dealing with a neurological disease; or even facing aging and incontinence. Physical therapy helps when the body is changing in a way that is affecting function and quality of life. A physiotherapist evaluates a person from the standpoint of their mobility, balance and strength. What are they having difficulty doing? What do they want to get back to doing? The basic premise of physical therapy is that you’re looking at the person’s physical dysfunction and determining the steps to take to improve the person’s physical condition
There’s always an element of patient education to help people discover what they are doing on a daily basis that could be contributing to their problem. Physiotherapist may need to re-educate a person on lifting something correctly or moving properly. During a PT session, the therapist usually applies hands-on techniques such as joint mobilization for a stiff joint, or soft-tissue work of stretching or massaging tight muscles. Some physical therapists also do manual manipulation(Chiropractic), which uses careful, directed manual force to improve mobility in joints, connective tissue or skeletal muscles.
PT always involves exercises of some sort, from a low-level stretch all the way to a well-rounded strengthening program. Physical therapy modalities are rehabilitation technologies that relieve pain, reduce swelling, decrease muscle spasms and improve circulation. These modalities include Matrix Rhythm Therapy, Pulse Electromagnetic Therapy, IFT, ultrasound, trigger-point pressure, dry needling, soft-tissue oscillation, electrical stimulation, traction, biofeedback, heat and ice. The exercise prescription and hands-on techniques are central to each PT session.
Physiotherapists sometimes push people beyond their limit or comfort zone a little bit, encouraging them to go beyond what they think they can do. Physi0therapists try to look at things objectively and implement different tests with patients. We try to empower people to kind of fix themselves. We don’t want them to have to keep coming back. Ultimately, we’re trying to get people to a point where they can maintain themselves and do their exercises at home or at the gym and go on with their lives. We push people so they can be independent and not reliant on us, medication or other treatments.
Most of the tomes people go to Physiotherapy treatment only two or three times a week depending on convivence . The responsibility for improvement falls on the individual, too. The stretching and strengthening exercises are really something that has to be done almost daily. You’re not going to get the progress or improvement you need just relying on going to your therapy visits, so you have to do exercises at home. And, by the way, we can always tell if someone is being good about doing his or her home exercise program or not.
Physiotherapy treatment is not a quick fix. People in general are notorious for looking for that quick fix. PT follows the way our anatomy and bodies operate. There’s a certain amount of time that is required for certain types of tissue in the body to repair themselves. If you try to speed up the process, you could experience a re-injury. So physiotherapy takes some patience and perseverance, and you’ve got to keep up with the program to experience the gains. Physical recovery happens in stages, and you have to be present for the whole program, from beginning to end, if you want long lasting results.