Why Consider Physiotherapy As a Treatment for Your Pain?

Limited range of physical movement and pain are caused by trauma or repetitive motion. These can turn into injury over a period of time. Human beings search for the quickest and easiest way of relieving the discomfort, whenever there is any type of deterioration in health.

For people who want to look beyond the drugs to counter the swelling and throbbing, visiting a physiotherapist is an ideal option. There are medical conditions which can be easily treated with physiotherapy, but people often neglect this option and end up getting a surgery or live in constant pain.

Trauma

The pain caused by sudden impact due to an accident is easily identifiable. Trauma is experienced either immediately or even after two-three days of the accident. Sometimes, the pain is unbearable, causing much discomfort to the patient. In such situations, it is advisable that you should visit a doctor as soon as possible. The doctor will operate you either with surgery or drugs.

If medication is prescribed and you are not willing to take it, then after consulting your doctor, you can visit a Physio. Medication can offer temporary relief, but physiotherapy provides permanent relief. A physiotherapist can also help to avoid surgery in many cases.

Repetitive Motion Syndrome/Disorder

In many cases, out of nowhere a patient starts feeling pain in joints and muscles or swelling in a body part. You also might have faced similar situations when you wake up with stiff elbow or your knees aching or wrist swollen. There may not be any sign of a fall or accident, even then the pain keeps reoccurring, it should be addressed immediately.

You may have noticed that after a period of time you are unable to do basic household chores or in case you are professional, then you start suffering from back pain or wrist ache. Even while jogging, your muscles seem to ache more than before. All these signs are of constant strain which is faced by your body. These can be treated easily by making a regular visit to an expert Physio.

How a physiotherapist helps you?

– An expert Physio will first analyse your condition and by studying your reports. The whole rehabilitation period will largely depend on the severity of the injury.

– You may find the whole rehabilitation process a bit slow, but what is important to understand that the results will be permanent. If the pain or swelling is neglected for a longer period of time, then later it can only be treated by surgery. With timely physiotherapy treatment, you may even avoid the surgery.

– Specific areas are targeted by Physio’s which helps to provide strength the tendons and muscles of the injured body part. The Physio will not only treat your injury, but will also teach you how to avoid future injury.

– Your physiotherapist may even ask you to move your knee, arm or elbow in opposite motion. This is mainly done to counter the discomfort.

What Is The Osteopathy Myofascial Release?

Osteopathy is one of the youngest medical practices being administered today. Its main purpose is to help patients who have problems with muscles and bones. It aims to pinpoint the root cause of the problem to help the patients completely recover.

One of the approaches that are being done in osteopathy is Myofascial release. It is a kind of therapy that targets the soft tissues of the body. Some tissues in the body, when constricted, result to pain and immobilization. The main idea of this approach is to relax these soft tissues such as the muscles and the lymph nodes to help the patient in relieving pain and bringing back normal movement range.

There are many reasons why soft tissues become restricted and constricted. According to studies, among these problems include overuse, inactivity and infection. If you are an athlete, you are likely to use many parts of your body for long hours. This can lead to overuse of the soft tissues resulting to pain and damage. If you encounter an accident, there is a high possibility that you will also experience trauma. Trauma or strong impact on the body may cause the fascia or the muscles to tear. If you lack physical activity, your muscles will become stiff. Once they become stiff, they will not be able to support vigorous activities over a period of time. This is the reason why muscles become easily sore and damaged when you exercise after a long time. Myofascial release does not only address the soft tissues in your body. It is also helpful in improving your connective tissues and helping them recover from damage.

There are two main categories and two main techniques involved in Myofascial release. Let’s talk about the categories first – passive and active. In the passive approach, the patient is suggested to relax while the therapy is being administered. In the active approach, the patient is suggested to do several resistance exercises to target the soft tissues.

As for the main techniques, there is the direct and the indirect technique. In the direct Myofascial release, tension is applied. The physicians usually do this by massaging the muscles and the nerves with their knuckles and elbows. The force applied is helpful in releasing the restriction. The main aim of this technique is to reach the deep tissues and improve their health. On the other hand, the indirect Myofascial release does not apply so much pressure on the body of the patient. Instead of forcing the restrictions to be released, the physicians wait for them to be naturally released. This is done through mild stretching.

Myofascial release suggests that by releasing the restrictions of the soft tissues, pain and other discomfort will go away. Once the constrictions are gone, the patient will be able to move freely again without any problem. This practice is still new but it promises a lot in the medical field.

Physical Therapy Treatments for Carpal Tunnel

It is estimated 260,000 carpal tunnel surgeries are performed each year in the U.S. However, early in the disorder, CTS is reversible. Unfortunately, if not treated, over time the insulation on the nerves may wear away, and permanent nerve damage may develop resulting in the need for surgery.

There are several physical therapy treatments which can treat CTS. Whichever methods the physical therapist chooses, the main goal is to release the pressure from the median nerve and to reduce the amount of swelling, inflammation, damage and scar tissue in the patient’s wrist and carpal tunnel. By releasing the pressure on the median nerve, carpal tunnel symptoms are alleviated.

By healing the tissue damage in and around the carpal tunnel, we’re able to minimize the chance of pain, loss of motion, atrophy, and loss of grip strength and hand control.

5 treatments for carpal tunnel

  1. Rest: Rest is important for initial healing because without an appropriate amount of rest the patient is at risk for increased inflammation, pain and re-injury of their wrist. Unfortunately, carpal tunnel can be caused by repetitive injury done in the workplace, so it may be impossible to have complete rest, which leads to the importance of physical therapy treatments in looking to alleviate the symptoms of CTS.
  2. Splinting: A removable wrist splint (brace) is usually the first course of action in treatment. The splint is able to keep the wrist at a neutral angle without applying any force over the carpal tunnel, which lowers the pressure on the nerve in the wrist. Sometimes, this may actually cure the problem if used for a few weeks. However, it is common that the splint helps alleviate symptoms and further treatment is required to heal the injury.
  3. Cold Compression Therapy: The cold compression therapy wraps have an active temperature exchange unit that maintains cool temperature and compression to the wrist, which immediately reduces swelling and helps reduce pain and inflammation. This immediate reduction in swelling aids in reducing pressure on the nerve in the wrist, which causes pain in the carpal tunnel.
  4. Low Level Laser Therapy: A recent study published with the National Center for Biotechnology showed that low level laser therapy significantly improved grip strength, functionality and lowered pain in carpal tunnel patients.
  5. Ultrasound Therapy: Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves directed toward the inflamed area of the wrist. The sound waves are converted into heat in the deep tissues of the hand, which opens the blood vessels and allows oxygen to be delivered to the injured tissue. Ultrasound is often performed along with nerve and tendon exercises.

In the United States, people spend an average of 444 minutes every day looking at screens, or 7.4 hours. That breaks down to 147 minutes spent watching TV, 103 minutes in front of a computer, 151 minutes on a smartphones and 43 minutes with a tablet. This kind of lifestyle creates more risk for developing carpel tunnel syndrome. It’s important for patients to seek treatment early when CTS is reversible in order to avoid the complications of wrist surgery.

Starting My Journey Towards A Knee Replacement

After having my knee replacement operation, I met many people who had this operation or were expecting to have the operation in the future.

I was asked many questions. So I decided to put pen to paper and tell the story of my journey towards my knee replacement. In this article I shall document the phases I went through to arrive at the operation. As well, I shall detail the symptoms that occurred and culminated to make the knee replacement necessary.

It all began in 1999 when I suffered soreness in my right knee after running. I sought advice from my GP. He advised an x-ray which found some damage to my knee joints. At this point the damage was minor but I was advised to give up running to slow down the rate of deterioration of the knee. This I did. I replaced the running with walking to help maintain my fitness now I was in my late fifties.

My next indication of an increasing problem with my knee came in July 2007. Mild pain and soreness occurred on the inside of my right knee. An x-ray found that the deterioration had increased particularly on the inside front section of my knee near my knee cap. My GP. advised me to go to my physiotherapist to get exercises to strengthen the knee. The physiotherapist gave me a series of exercises to strengthen the muscles on the inside of the knee to protect the damaged part of my knee. These exercises were to be done on both knees.

The problem with my knee ‘came to a head’ in September 2012. I had significant swelling of the knee and upper calf. A new x-ray was ordered. It showed significant deterioration to the knee that indicated I should see a specialist and return to my physiotherapist for exercises to strengthen my knee still further.

I saw the specialist who, on seeing the x-ray, said a knee replacement would be necessary soon. He asked me two questions. The first was the knee keeping me awake at night. The answer was “no”. The second question was how far could I walk? I told him I had walked through eighteen holes of golf the previous day. He indicated to me that the knee replacement could be put ‘on hold’.

The physiotherapist gave me a series of exercises to strengthen the knee muscles further and advised that I should ride a bike 20 to 30 minutes a day on an easy course as this would increase the strength of the muscles around my knees rapidly causing little or no further damage to my knee. I saw him again a week later. He noticed quite a significant improvement in my muscle strength around my knee in just that week.

Then in late January, 2013, after playing golf the knee and calf became swollen and began to ache mildly. The swelling did not go down. So, in mid-February with the swelling still there and pain and discomfort running down my leg, it was time to return to the knee specialist to put in train plans for my knee replacement.

In conclusion, I should point out the various symptoms I had over the years.

Initially, apart from the soreness around the knee, they were:

. I was bandy because I was unable to extend my right knee/leg fully.

. The sciatic nerve going down my right leg would ache right down to my big toe.

. At night, at about 8.30 pm., I would suffer restless legs for at least 30 minutes.

. Often my feet seemed to be hot.

. My feet would feel uncomfortable in bed and keep me awake. So, to sleep at night, I would need to wear socks even in the summer.

. Sometimes, I could only sleep on those nights if I sat in a reclining lounge chair.

In the final phase, more and more symptoms were present as time went on. By late January 2013, the following were occurring:

. a pain or ache around my knee was always present;

. the knee calf and ankle remained swollen;

. the sciatic nerve was uncomfortable;

. getting in and out of the car was difficult;

. walking up and down stairs was becoming difficult and lastly,

. a localised pain developed in the front inside of the knee around the kneecap area.

PEMF Treatment’s Health Benefits

PEMF is a mode of treatment that has proved to be a success in many studies conducted by the National Institute of Health. PEMF, otherwise known as Pulse Electromagnetic Field is a technique that can be used to correct a number of medical conditions in a cost effective and timely manner. It is very simple to understand how PEMF works. The system emits a series of pulsating frequencies onto the affected area which in turn creates a kind of penetrating energy within the cells to heal you and give you a number of medical benefits.

Over the last decade, Medics studying PEMF technique have seen tremendous improvement in patients who were treated using the method. According to research findings by the National Institute of Health, a group of 58 patients with bone fractures were tested and the results were beyond expectation. The success rate for patients who were treated with this technique averaged between 75%-77.4% compared to control experiment that was conducted within the same duration of time and realized a success rate of about 45% only.

Clearly, there is a fundamental relationship between living organisms and magnetic fields. At least, there is enough evidence to support PEMF effectiveness from studies that have been carried out and published in numerous medical journals, textbooks and other sources concerning this discovery. The effectiveness of this mode of treatment cannot be undermined because it is a holistic approach to most medical conditions involving pain.

Another study by Sherman R. and his team entitled “Double Blind” investigated the effectiveness of PEMF technique in combating pain. They observed a number of patients suffering from migraines (a medical condition that is characterized by severe headache, a feeling of nausea and inability to face direct light) and discovered that PEMF can reduce pain by almost a 100%. During the first month of conducting the experiment, they closely monitored the participants. It was reported that 73% of them reported a tremendous improvement after a continuous exposure to PEMF, 45% reported at list a significant decrease in the headaches, while 14% recorded a total relief of headache pains.

Energy medicine, as it is commonly referred to, is soon going to revolutionize the current modes of treatments involving pharmaceuticals and surgery. International Journal of Neuroscience puts it very plain. They have shown that very weak magnetic fields, in a way, syncs with human brain or heart tissues to create a special metabolic effect within the cells of mammals. Apparently, geomagnetic forces (which are earth’s constant magnetic field) are too strong to initiate this kind of communication. This is where PEMF comes in handy. They have shown that the weak electromagnetic waves have a tendency of altering and promoting cell alignment, which may trigger healing and pain relief.

It has also been reported that patients suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) can have their visual memory and perspective corrected just by getting exposed to electromagnetic field of low frequency and intensity. Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a disease that causes the victim to partially lose their vision. It disrupts communication between the Central Nervous System and the eye. Thanks to PEMF treatment, which can correct the problem just by a mare exposure to the electromagnetic fields.

Well, if you are wondering, PEMF is a painless procedure, and instead a session of PEMF will make you feel relaxed while doing a great job on the go. All a patient is required to do is to lie on a bed surface equipped with a PEMF system. No unnecessary physical activities or movements, only plentiful of rest, sometimes you might even fall asleep during the procedure.

What Is Your Thoracic Region?

The spine has different regions depending on the location in the body. In this article, we are going to talk about your thoracic region – where it is located and how you can maintain its health.

The thoracic region is the region in your spine which is located in the upper back. It runs from your neck area until your rib cage area. It is very important for you to learn the different parts involved as this region is mainly responsible for a lot of back problems.

Your thoracic spine is made up of four main structures. Each structure serves a unique purpose. First in the list are the bones and the joints. The thoracic area consists of 12 vertebrae located at the middle part of the spinal column. These bones are often referred to as T1 to T12 where T means thoracic. T1 or the uppermost bone is connected to the lower neck area while the T12 or the bottommost area is connected to the upper rib cage area. If you try to analyse the bones, you will see that the bottommost is the largest while the uppermost is the smallest. This is very important to ensure that the spine has a good balance and support.

Second in the list are the nerves. Your thoracic region will not be complete if there are no nerves attached to it. The spine is the bony structure that protects the spinal cord – the long line of nerves that send messages to and from the brain. The part of the cord that is located in the region is the thinnest. The nerves located here are responsible for sending signals to the organs of the upper body which are mainly located in the chest and the abdomen.

Third in the list are the connective tissues. The bones of the vertebrae are attached together by the ligaments or the connective tissues. They are important to ensure that the bones are stable. It is also important to note that every vertebra has a disc. The disc is made up of nucleus and annulus which protect the nerves from being damaged. The nucleus works as the shock absorber while the annulus serves as the main protector as it is made up of strong ligaments.

Fourth in the list are the muscles. The muscles that are located in the thoracic region are interesting. They are arranged in a layered manner. The muscles do not only help connect the bones together but also to the other bony structures such as the ribs.

These are some of the basic things you need to know about your thoracic spine. It is very important that you take care of this area to avoid experiencing back pains. You can do extension exercises to improve the condition of this region. Visit your doctor from time to time and have your spine checked for possible problems.

How Physical Therapy Helps Elderly People With Diseases

As we age, our bodies lose their ability to function as well as they used to when we were younger. After living a full life, our muscles, joints, and bones wear down, and we need extra help to stabilize our health and wellness. Physical therapy is a great service for the elderly, especially those who are suffering from diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, cerebral palsy, and multiple sclerosis. Here are some of the ways that physical therapy helps elderly patients to cope with these debilitating diseases.

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects a person’s movement. Parkinson’s is often seen as hand tremors and slurred speech, and commonly causes stiffness and the slowing of the body’s movements. Physical therapy helps those with Parkinson’s by developing aerobic exercise routines for them, which can help reduce stiffness and improve the body’s mobility, balance, and posture. Those who suffer from this illness also experience varying degrees of depression, and regular exercise can also help with those symptoms.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia that causes problems with a patient’s memory, thinking, and behavior. The condition normally worsens over time and makes it difficult for the patient to even perform daily tasks. Physical therapists help those with Alzheimer’s by designing exercise routines for them. Studies have shown that exercise can improve memory, delay the onset of Alzheimer’s and dementia, and delay the decline in the ability to perform daily tasks in those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Those who are suffering from this illness also are prone to falls and breaking bones, which physical therapists can also treat when necessary.

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a disorder of movement, muscle tone, or posture that is caused by some kind of problem that occurred with a patient’s developing brain, most often before birth. Those who have the disorder suffer from imbalance, exaggerated movements, abnormal posture, and uncontrolled movements. Although the effects of this disorder do not worsen with age, people with cerebral palsy still experience increased problems as they get older, such as increased pain, difficulty walking, and falls. Physical therapy helps elderly patients who have cerebral palsy by giving them exercise routines that can help them to maintain strength and prevent joint problems.

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is a disease of the central nervous system in which attacks from the immune system cause issues between the communication of the brain and the rest of the body as well as permanent damage and deterioration of nerves. Symptoms of multiple sclerosis vary depending on the amount of nerve damage, but this illness may cause some to completely lose their ability to walk. Physical therapists can provide workout routines in the areas of aerobic exercise, aquatic exercise, and even yoga that can help improve a patient’s balance, ability to walk, and possibly slow down the progression of the illness.

Physical therapy not only aids the elderly in the symptoms of aging, but it also helps those who suffer daily from the effects of disabling diseases.

How to Prevent Injury for Physical Therapists

It goes without saying treating patients is a physical job. Not only is extensive knowledge required, but physical strength and stamina are a large part of being successful when working in physical therapy. That being said, treating patients can take a toll on a therapist’s body, putting them at risk for the very issues patients come to be treated for. What’s wonderful about physical therapy are the array of modalities available that are time-efficient and powerful, helping keep physical therapists feeling their best in order to deliver the top quality patient care throughout their career.

Preventative measures are important in insuring longevity within a physical therapist’s career. Here’s a list of some of the most common complaints physical therapists can experience and some simple reminders to help take care of these issues before they become chronic problems.

Top 5 Physical Therapists Physical Complaints

  1. Low Back Pain: Physical therapists spend a lot of time on their feet, leaning over a treatment table and mobilizations patient’s body which can lead to low back pain. In addition to using proper body mechanics remembering to apply heat or ice as needed can help reduce low back pain.
  2. Carpal Tunnel: Extensive manual therapy in addition to mobilizations can lead to overuse of the hands and wrists. Some of my favorite modalities for hand and wrist pain are paraffin wax, ultrasound, in addition to cold compression therapy.
  3. Neck pain: Again, leaning over clients leads to a forward head posture which can create neck pain. Making sure to stretch as well performing chin tucks throughout the day will help maintain a neutral posture. When neck pain occurs, using ice in addition to a traction table can help alleviate pain.
  4. Foot Pain: All that time on the feet means it makes sense there would be some pain at the end of the day. Wearing supportive shoes, taking breaks and doing a quick treatment in a heated whirlpool will help decrease the pain and pressure experienced in the feet.
  5. Hip pain: Another common complaint, hip pain is most likely caused by a number of factors. Luckily, a lot can be alleviated by stretching, using Combination Therapy and kinesio taping to increase the stability of the hip joint.

All of these problems are pretty common complaints among therapists in the clinic. Luckily, treatment using the available modalities, in addition to quality foot-care, therapeutic exercise and stretching can be efficient in resolving these issues and perhaps most importantly be done solo. Meaning, therapists don’t have to wait for the time to get on another therapists schedule to treat any issues they experience throughout the workday.

There is a belief that people in the health field, don’t take care of themselves because they are so busy taking care of other people. While this sounds very noble, that practice won’t help a practitioner sustain themselves or their career. Prevention and dealing with issues as they occur go a long way towards keeping a long, thriving career helping others and maintaining vibrant health.

How to Treat the Pain Associated With Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a painful condition caused by inflammation of the thick, fibrous band of tissue (”fascia”) that reaches from the heel to the toes. This fascia is responsible for supporting the muscles and arch of the foot. The plantar fascia is made of three distinct parts: medial, central, and lateral bands. The central band is the thickest and strongest and is most likely involved in plantar fasciitis pain. Tiny tears are created on the surface of the fascia when it’s stretched too far causing inflammation and pain. In addition to inflammation and pain, the stress on the muscles and ligaments from plantar fasciitis can cause heel spurs. There isn’t a single treatment for plantar fasciitis, but physical therapy utilizes several tools which can alleviate the pain and inflammation.

Plantar Fasciitis accounts for about 10% of runner related injuries and is more likely to affect women than men. Because of the high incidence rate of plantar fasciitis in runners, the primary cause is believed to be microtrauma from repeated stress.

In normal function, the plantar fascia acts as a shock absorber and support for the arch of the foot. While walking or moving, the plantar fascia is like a spring that simultaneously conserves energy and provides propulsion. Tension increases while the foot is on the ground and is then released during toe-off to help with acceleration.

5 Modalities to Treat the Pain of Plantar Fasciitis

1. Kinesio Tape: Evidence has shown using Kinesio tape is effective alleviating pain and promoting the healing process. The Kinesio tape provides support for the arch allowing the foot to relax, which relieves pressure and the fascia and reduces inflammation.

2. Cold Compression Therapy: Cold compression therapy combines the benefits of ice which helps decrease pain along with compression which helps decrease edema and swelling. Cold compression therapy is useful when treating acute pain from plantar fasciitis, particularly following any stretching done to the foot during a physical therapy session.

3. Ultrasound Therapy: Using sound waves ultrasound therapy stimulates the tissue beneath the skin’s surface. The heating effect of ultrasound therapy aids in increasing blood flow in the plantar fascia which helps reduce swelling and edema, leading to a reduction in pain.

4. Low Level Laser Therapy: Laser therapy applies light (red and infrared) over the plantar fascia. Laser therapy converts light into biochemical energy, which initiates tissue repair in the cells. Additionally the stimulation created by the laser helps reduce pain and decrease inflammation.

5. Therapeutic Stretching: Once the acute pain of plantar fasciitis has been addressed, it becomes important to stretch the calves and feet in order to relieve the pressure on the plantar fascia.

Another one of the primary populations affected by this ailment are those who are overweight. The pain caused by plantar fasciitis makes it difficult for this population to exercise making a cycle of not enough movement but being stopped by prohibitive pain. It’s important for people experiencing symptoms for longer than a week to seek treatment from a physical therapist in order to reduce down time and increase the ability to return to normal activities.

For more information about popular physical therapy modalities please visit our blog at ProHealthcareProducts.com/blog.

Sports Physiotherapy – A Unique, Challenging and Exciting Career Option

In the past, there was a time when the role of sports physiotherapists was to just fetch water to the ground with a sponge to give an injured player some relief. Those days are gone now. Sports physiotherapists these days do way more than just bring a bucket of water and a sponge. They are now well-tuned athletes who must keep up their physical fitness just like sportsmen and women. They need to take very good care of their body and make sure that all the players are in their best health throughout the year.

Any sport involves injuries. But some injuries do not surface as soon as they occur. They often surface when the player least expects them. And then, it is just a series of treatments and medications. To prevent these from happening, physiotherapy is very useful. Sports clubs spend a lot of money each year on physiotherapy and rehabilitation of athletes. They hire the best physiotherapists in the industry to make sure that the players are always fit and healthy.

Sports physiotherapists ensure fast recovery and make the sportspeople ready to get a victory. Sports physiotherapists have to travel wherever the sportspeople go. They travel a lot, see the world and work with people who are excellent in their field.

Obviously, the job of a sports physiotherapist is always in demand. The job profile involves examining and diagnosing injuries, planning the treatment modules, offering advice to the sportspeople on how to attune their lifestyle and exercise regimes to recover quickly and get back to their normal life. They have to administer treatments like manipulation, electro-therapy, hydrotherapy and heat treatment.

If a professional sports team hires a physiotherapist, he/she has to work with the coach (es) and other members who provide medical care and health advice on the right course of action for recovery. This situation is even more probable if the physiotherapist gets a job in a team where one or more players have very, very high reputation.

Entering this profession is not easy. It throws many challenges at you and involves a lot of hard work. After you get a degree in Physiotherapy, you should pursue further studies and specialize in treating sports injuries.

You will need to use your sports-specific knowledge to heal chronic, acute and other injuries. Your services will be available to athletes of all ages. It will help your career if you take part in some voluntary work. You will not get any payment but you will be able to add it to your CV. It will also show that you can take initiative and you have the drive to pursue your career and work with some of the best clubs in your country. If you can successfully secure a job as a sports physiotherapist, you actually have innumerable options.

First, you need to enroll in a reputable sports physiotherapy center where you can receive training and benefit from hands-on practice. There are some gym programs too that you have to enroll in so that you can get the ideal physical fitness to treat athletes throughout the year.