Benefits Of Physiotherapy And Types!
“Physiotherapy helps to restore movement and function when someone is affected by injury, illness, or disability. It can also help to reduce your risk of injury or illness in the future.” – NHS UK
Specially trained Physiotherapists/Physical Therapists provide physiotherapy or Physical Therapy.
Physiotherapists either work at hospitals, clinics, or community rehabilitation centers as part of multi-disciplinary teams. They run their own clinics individually or alongside other therapists (speech, occupational, vision, etc.), or they offer treatment at home.
It involves a holistic therapy approach that includes the patient in his/her own treatment.
Physiotherapists use the following modes of treatment:
- General advice and education to patients on topics such as posture, lifting and carrying techniques, devices, and gear to be used for exercising, etc.
- Prescribing tailored exercises and movement routines – These routines are created to improve general mobility, to strengthen various parts of the body.
- Manual/ Hands-on therapy – The physiotherapist uses his/her hands to relieve pain or soreness in specific parts of the body. This is also done to provide resistance when the patient does his/her exercises under the supervision of the physiotherapist.
Problem areas that can be treated using physiotherapy are the following:
- Bones, joints, and soft tissues – Back, neck, or shoulder pain including sports injuries
- Nervous system– Motor issues arising from health conditions such as MS, Parkinson’s, or multiple sclerosis
- Blood circulation in the heart – after a heart attack and after any major coronary surgery
- Promote better lung capacity – improving breathing, treating conditions such as cystic fibrosis, chronic obtrusive pulmonary disorder
- General improvement in the physical activity and prevention of any injuries
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Types of Physiotherapy
Physiotherapy is divided into various types on the basis of the treatment being provided. Most patients require a combination of two or more of the following types of physiotherapy as the conditions treated are not mutually exclusive. The types of physiotherapy provided are as follows:
- Orthopedic physiotherapy – This is the basic Musculoskeletal therapy that provides for mobility issues occurring on account of overuse of certain parts, injuries, bad posture, or to improve general mobility range. This type of physiotherapy is mostly rehabilitative in nature and is also recommended after fractures and other accidents to restore normalcy of movement.
- Community-based rehabilitation – This type of physiotherapy, as the name suggests, is provided to groups and on a larger scale than all other types of physiotherapy. It includes a lot of general education and advice on many fronts. We are advising office-goers on the right sitting posture, telling people how to take breaks and stand up occasionally, advising ladies on kegel exercises to build pelvic strength—recommending general exercises to people in old age homes, etc.
- Cardiovascular and pulmonary therapy – This is physiotherapy provided to patients who have difficulty breathing, have problems with blood and air circulation or have undergone heart surgery. The main aim of this type of physiotherapy is to improve breathing and blood circulation.
- Sports physiotherapy – This is physiotherapy provided specifically to athletes to ensure optimum performance in their sports, prevent injuries, and help them recover from injuries. This type of therapy is very specific and covers all sports and athletic injuries, including advising patients on whether or not they need to undergo surgery or not.
- Neuro-physiotherapy – This is the type of physiotherapy that is provided to both children and adults to help them overcome neurological conditions. On the basis of age, it is divided into the following two categories:
- Pediatric physiotherapy – This is therapy given to children who suffer from neurological disorders which may arise on account of genetics, accidents, and birth disorders. Examples of conditions affecting children are Cerebral palsy, Global developmental delay, Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Autism spectrum disorder, etc. Therapists with the use of a combination of games, exercises, and other props help children to enhance their gross and fine motor skills, reduce their tactile defensiveness, improve their overall cognitive abilities, and increase their attention span.
- Geriatric physiotherapy – This is therapy provided to older patients who suffer from strokes, paralytic attacks, Parkinson’s, Arthritis, and other similar conditions. The aim of the therapist, in this case, is to, by the use of exercise and other movement routines, help the patient to restore up to a certain level of body function as best can be done given their limited functioning on account of the condition.
Benefits of physiotherapy
Physiotherapy has shown miracles over the years if patients co-operate with their therapists and follow the prescribed routine and exercises. The following are benefits of physiotherapy
- Reduction or elimination of pain – Therapeutic exercises and hands-on therapy help to facilitate muscle, joint, and tissue mobilization to reduce pain and prevent it from arising again.
- Avoiding surgery – In some cases, therapy helps to strengthen the affected part enough, to eliminate the need for surgery. In case the surgery is still needed, the patient goes into the surgery with the affected part much stronger, and hence the recovery is much faster, and the surgery process is much smoother.
- Mobility improvement – Stretching and strengthening exercises help to restore mobility. They ensure that soreness and stiffness are reduced and movement capability is enhanced.
- Recovering from neurological conditions – Physiotherapy helps to improve gait (manner of walking) and balance. In conditions such as stroke, patients often have balance issues, and these can be addressed by undergoing sessions with a physiotherapist.
- Recovering from injury – Physiotherapists understand why injuries occur, and which injuries are common to which sport and hence can design recovery plans suited to each specific injury, allowing the athletes to recover much faster.
- Prevention of injury – Knowing which body parts are prone to injury, physiotherapists can create strengthening plans for athletes to ensure that they are not susceptible to injuries that can arise from muscle wear and tear.
- Improving lung and heart capacity – Post-operative care is vital for patients and physiotherapy forms an integral part of bringing the patient back to normal. Breathing exercises help to restore optimal lung capacity and blood circulation.