Physiotherapy is a treatment which is available to those who
are affected by illness, disease, injury or even the ageing
process. It helps in developing and restoring the body’s
movements and functions.
A physiotherapist has to go
through a difficult and technical training programme within
a university establishment to become a professional. They
are responsible practitioners who have to support their treatments
and methods on well researched and approved techniques.
The aim of physiotherapy is
to recognize problems and get the most out of possible movements
by using a series of individually customized methods.
The physiotherapist does this
by gaining an insight into the client’s lifestyle (social,
psychological and cultural factors), assessing the current
mobility, identifying weaknesses and deciding the outcome
they want. These are
done by using verbal and physical assessments and observations,
until a client’s full history has been understood by
A range of questions are asked
to find out how the complaint occurred such as;
What makes the
What the range
of movement was like before?
How long has
the pain been present and where does the pain begin?
A plan of treatment will be made up after these assessments
have taken place, and each person will have their own individual
programme which may last for one session or numerous sessions
which can last over a long period of time. Many people can
gain from the advice given by a physiotherapist; they are
even able to take a self-help programme away with them that
can be carried out at home.
By observing the present movement
of the client the physiotherapist will decide what activities
are irritating the condition.
There are many physiotherapists
who focus a specific area such as sports physio or with unconscious
patients so they go through training in these specialist subjects.
By a Physiotherapist
There are a variety of treatments
which physiotherapist offer; these are massage, manipulation,
exercise, hydrotherapy and electrotherapy. Manipulation and
massage use different techniques for a differing range of
reasons, they both encourage blood circulation, help reduce
swelling and assist in pain relief.
Exercising will hopefully
help to increase movement by strengthening the musculoskeletal
system. Programmes are provided by physiotherapists for overall
fitness or they can target certain areas of the body for particular
reasons. The exercises are usually repetitive with a steady
increase in time and range.
Electrotherapy is used to
send electrical impulses through the muscles to make the muscles
contract which then overrides the pain messages which are
sent to the brain.
Hydrotherapy uses water to
ease muscular tension and pain and also to increase circulation
and the range of movement. To do this, hydrotherapy uses the
resistance and weightless environment of water.
All of these types of methods enhance the overall well-being
of the patient which with time will help to reduce pain and
the stress linked to it.
Physiotherapists can also
teach you how to reach and maintain a correct posture, also
the right techniques used for lifting and how to steer clear
of general hyper-extension and flexion of the muscles which
can add to the increased risk of developing back pain. When
you start physiotherapy it can be uncomfortable but with willpower
and determination, the discomfort will reduce and the pain
will lessen as the treatment continues and progresses.
Physiotherapy is available
through the NHS and a referral should be made by the GP or
orthopaedic /spinal specialist. Many people benefit from physiotherapy
and the techniques learned through it can be practiced at
home which can help to avoid back pain.