Physiotherapy has been in existence over the years as a method of treatment to patients who are suffering from various dysfunctions and disabilities. As such, physicians would recommend physiotherapy as an after-care treatment to patients with debilitating conditions as a result of diseases or accidents.
A Brief History
The development of physiotherapy dates back to the ancient times where Hippocrates used massage as a form of treatment in helping people restore their body’s functional and motor abilities. Since then, many patients were healed from their conditions and this led to the introduction of physiotherapy as a profession.
Physiotherapy, therefore, plays a great part in man’s health and as of today massage therapy is still being practiced as a method of relief for patients experiencing chronic pain or constant body aches. However, physiotherapy in these modern times has already gone beyond massage therapy. Physiotherapists are now practicing new techniques which encompass the use of electrical modalities, workout equipment and administration of exercise modules.
Its Main Objective
Physiotherapy is defined as the area of health responsible for restoring, maintaining, promoting and developing a person’s functional ability and maximum movement throughout his or her life. Its main objective is to identify potential areas of movement through intervention, treatment and prevention. Physiotherapy targets the body’s normal functional movement in order for a person to be perceived as healthy. Overall, physiotherapy aims to help a patient reach the extent of wellness and thereby achieve a better quality of life.
A physiotherapist is a university-educated health professional whose main occupation is to provide rehabilitation and massage therapy to patients experiencing functional and mobility problems as caused by ageing, disability, injury and various health diseases. Physiotherapists work in different of areas of medicine including neurology, orthopaedics, paediatrics, cardiorespiratory, senior’s health, women’s health and sports. He or she is qualified to conduct a medical checkup and complete an extensive assessment of a patient covering the following:
- health history
- cardiorespiratory status
- reflex and sensation
- joint range of motion
- movement patterns
- pain tolerance
Before therapy is performed, the physiotherapist comes up with a complete evaluation of the patient’s condition as obtained from medical records, laboratory tests, x-rays and surgical notes. The physiotherapist also considers other aspects of health apart from physical such as psychological, emotional and social well-being of the patient. Based on these, he or she will then create an individualised treatment program intended to meet the specific needs of the patient to achieve normality in body movement and functionality. When the therapy sessions are completed, the therapist will determine if the patient manifests independence in moving normally. He or she also educates the patient on coping with disability and prevention of future injuries.
Physiotherapists provide various therapy techniques such as the following:
- TENS or ultrasound
- manual therapy
- therapeutic exercise
- work hardening
The Importance of Physiotherapy
Generally, physiotherapy is a prescribed treatment to assist patients in recovery from a health condition or injury. One important note is that physiotherapy is applicable to patients of all ages. When a patient is recommended to undergo rehabilitation or therapy, he or she must attend every session as much as possible. All the reasons are stated below:
Range of Motion
If you are suffering from a condition that has been present for a long time and the said condition is already affecting your range of motion, you will continue to experience the same if no intervention is carried out. Without physiotherapy, you will continue to feel less and less capable of doing your normal daily activities. For example, pain and stiffness in your shoulder can lead to case of frozen shoulder. Physiotherapy can address this problem through the combination of different techniques such as massage, exercise and application of electrical modalities.
If you are suffering from chronic pain as caused by accident or injury, physiotherapy helps alleviate it, allowing you to improve a better quality of life. The ability to reduce pain or eliminate pain completely can help you resume your normal daily activities such as enjoying your hobbies or playing your favourite sport.
If you are suffering from breathing issues that are bringing inconvenience to your life, physiotherapy can help you recover from this condition through the facilitation of guided exercise modules. The same technique applies to patients who have undergone cardiac surgery as this will help them regain normality in performing basic body movements.
If you have conditions such as Parkinson’s Disease or have suffered a stroke, physiotherapy aids in improving or correcting the damage. Regular therapy will help compensate for deficits in weaknesses, mobility and gait thereby bring back full or partial bodily movement and functioning. More importantly, it stops the occurrence of further deterioration.
Indeed, physiotherapy is an important field of medicine that promotes healing and wellness to people with or without a health issue. If you think that medicines are no longer effective in treating body pains, it’s time to visit physio Prahran VICand consult with a certified physiotherapist.