What does a physiotherapist do?
Physical therapists or physiotherapists are experts in human movement and function and work to help people improve their physical mobility, strength, and flexibility. Their roles include the evaluation, assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of physical impairments, disabilities, and pain caused by injury, illness, or other conditions. Physical therapists are experts in the musculoskeletal and neuromuscular systems and are trained to design personalized treatment plans that address the specific needs of each patient. They use a variety of techniques and therapies, such as exercise, massage, joint mobilization and some modalities such as ultrasound and shock wave, to help patients regain their physical function and reduce pain.
5 Reasons you May Need a Physical Therapist:
Injury Recovery or Post-Surgery Rehabilitation
One of the most common reasons people seek out physical therapy is to recover from an injury. Whether it’s a sports injury, a workplace injury, a fall or a car accident, physical therapy can help patients reduce pain and regain their function. Certain injuries may require a surgical procedure and a tailored rehabilitation program to avoid further complications. Physical therapists work with patients to design treatment plans that include exercises and therapies aimed at improving strength, flexibility, and mobility. They also use manual therapies such as massage and joint mobilization to reduce pain and improve range of motion. In certain cases, physiotherapy can also be recommended to those prior to surgery, to strengthen the areas around it to allow for improved rehabilitation.
Chronic pain can be debilitating and affect a person’s quality of life. Physical therapists can help manage chronic pain by designing a personalized recovery plan. This may include therapies such as shockwave, ultrasounds and manual therapies that can improve range of motion, reduce inflammation, and promote healing. In addition, it will also include manual treatment such as massage or soft tissue mobilization to alleviate symptoms. They will also prescribe exercises to strengthen the surrounding areas. Lastly, Physical therapists also work with patients to develop strategies for managing pain at home and preventing future pain episodes.
Balance & Coordination Issues
Balance and coordination issues can be caused by a variety of factors, including aging, neurological disorders, posture complications and vestibular disorders. Physical therapists can help patients improve this through exercises and therapies aimed at improving strength, flexibility, and mobility. Your physical therapist will be able to diagnose the root of your deficiencies whether it is muscle imbalance or a vestibular disorder and provide an individualized recovery procedure to target the issue. They also work with patients to educate them on the condition, develop strategies for managing symptoms at home, making their homes more easily accessible for them, and preventing future balance and coordination issues.
Management of Chronic Conditions
Chronic conditions such as arthritis, tendinitis, fibromyalgia, plantar fasciitis, multiple sclerosis and many more can affect a person’s physical function and quality of life. Physical therapists can help manage these conditions by designing a treatment plan that includes exercises and manual therapies that can improve strength, flexibility, and mobility. They may also utilize treatments such as ultrasound, shockwave, and laser therapy to help alleviate pain, improve circulation, or enhance healing. They also provide education on proper body mechanics and safe movement practices to help prevent re-injury and manage symptoms at home.
Physiotherapists also are important members of rehabilitation team after a stroke or brain injury.
Physical therapists can provide extremely helpful performance benefits tailored to your sport of activities needs. From weightlifting to team sports and individual sports, physical therapists can provide an abundance of performance enhancing training. Sports PTs can assess your movement patterns, identify areas of weakness or imbalance, and address those issues, which can help prevent injuries and improve your overall performance. They are knowledgeable on the biomechanics of motions such as a jumpshot in basketball, a baseball swing, a tennis serve, and more. Physical therapists can provide technique improvements and design exercises and drills that mimic the movements you will use in your sport, allowing you to become more skilled, confident, and proficient. They can work with you on your required skills, improving aspects such as agility, balance, and coordination. In addition, physical therapists can also work with you to improve your overall athletic performance. They can design exercises to help you build strength, increase endurance, and enhance your overall conditioning. They can also help you develop a specific training program to help you prepare for your sport and provide effective warmups.
In conclusion, physical therapists play an important role in helping people recover from injuries, manage chronic pain, and improve their physical function and quality of life. If you are experiencing any of the conditions discussed in this article, consider seeking out the expertise of a licensed physical therapist at Physiomobility.
Written by Sagar Dama, BSc Kinesiology
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