Physiotherapy is a branch of medicine gaining traction over the past few years. It refers to the treatment of injuries and injuries through physical methods like massages, temperature treatments, and exercise regimen instead of using medicine or going through surgery.
It benefits everyone regardless of age, gender, or build, especially those who are suffering from trauma or ailments - from post-surgery stiffness, chronic lower back pains, sports injuries, and even musculoskeletal conditions. Physiotherapy helps you develop your fitness levels and allows you to strengthen your body before the ailment or injury.
Benefits of Physiotherapy
1. Relief from Pain
The main reason people see a physiotherapist such as the Healthmax Physiotherapy Whitby in Canada is to help them deal with pain. Usually, pain comes in many forms from a variety of reasons.
While some people experience pain due to a sudden accident or as an effect of an ailment, others fall victim to chronic pain brought about by a wrong habit over long periods of time.
Regardless of the cause, physiotherapists can help you ease or manage your pain, if not completely eliminate it. Also, according to the American Physical Therapy Association, physical therapy helps us manage pain and reduce dependence on opioids such as painkillers. This, in turn, helps you keep your kidneys safe.
2. Prevent Recurrence of Past Injuries, and Reduce Risk of Future Injury
Physiotherapists are trained specialists not just in the management and the mitigation of pain but in finding its source and working on it. Depending on the nature of the illness or injury, they will find the time to teach you the proper posture and movement of your body.
Moreover, these movements reduce additional stress on your joints, easing pain and stiffness, and maximizes the effects of exercise.
3. Benefit from a Personalized Approach
One of the reasons why physiotherapy has increased in popularity is that it recognizes that there is no “one size fits all” approach to wellness. Registered physiotherapists make an assessment of your pain, its causes, and checks your physical capacity.
Then, usually taking into consideration other factors like clinical history, physical attributes, they start to design a personalized recovery program that is continuously assessed and adjusted as you go along.
Physiotherapy: From Wellness to Fitness
A study published in the Canadian Family Physician discussed the role of a physical therapist in attaining fitness. The increased focus in the field of physiotherapy has significantly added to our understanding of why certain techniques and methods in physiotherapy work.
Therapeutic ultrasound is one of the treatment modalities commonly used in the therapy sessions, it is designed to provide heating to soft tissues in the body such as muscles, joints, tendons, and even ligaments. It has been found that if the ultrasound machine is calibrated correctly, it has the ability to increase the body’s collagen production and even increase the permeability of cell membranes.
Aside from ultrasound, another medium that has found wide use in therapy are lasers. Instead of sound waves, it uses light to provide heating and reduce inflammation, stimulate blood flow and tissue regeneration.
Since it was first used in the 80s, it has been continuously used for treating a variety of skeletomuscular conditions. In fact, there are physiotherapy clinics that specialize in this kind of treatment.
In treatments involving pain mitigation caused by injuries from accidents or surgeries, a common treatment used by physiotherapists is the transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulator or TENS. Other similar treatments involve high-voltage galvanic stimulators, faradic stimulators, or interferential therapy that are fundamentally similar to TENS aside from the frequency and voltage level used.
These processes utilize electrical current passing through nerves that block pain reception. Studies show that these methods also stimulate endorphin release and consequently increase the pain threshold. This leads to a variety of effects such as an increased range of motion, movement, and endurance.
This effect, however, led some people to use TENS for the explicit purpose of fitness even without the background of physical recovery or rehabilitation. From this, a new range of physiotherapy modality, called Electronic Muscle Stimulators or EMS, has sprung to life.
TENS uses low-voltage to stimulate nerves with the desired effect being pain reduction while EMS uses low-voltage to stimulate muscle contraction. However, both methods have been shown to have medical implications, as shown in this 1997 study
Physiotherapy as a science is still young as it is only starting to systematically explain the reason why its techniques work. As a field in general, a lot of methods utilized in its recovery programs stem from quasi-therapeutic principles taken from either traditional or experimental means.
While the continuous influx of studies uncovers the underlying scientific basis for its effectivity, the average person can’t deny that it does grow in popularity because it mostly works. The care and attention a physiotherapist applies to each patient’s needs not only eases the pain but helps them maintain an improved level of wellness even long after they have recovered.
The posture and movement habits a physiotherapist instructs ensure that no stress is further applied to the soft tissues of our body, significantly reducing the risks of chronic pains which are usually acquired over a long time of misuse.
Also, some modalities previously dismissed as a novelty are now gaining integrity thanks to further research and their effectivity now has solid reasoning behind them. With these pieces of information now available, it is safe to say that physiotherapy, in general, contributes to improving one’s well-being.