What is Physiotherapy
Physiotherapists are specially trained and regulated practitioners who consider the body as a whole, rather than just focusing on the individual aspects of an injury, illness or disability.
Physiotherapy helps to reduce pain and restore movement and function by involving the person directly in their own care through exercise, manual therapy, education and advice. Physiotherapy also helps to maintain health for people of all ages and to reduce the risk of injury or illness in the future.
What to expect?
At your first appointment a detailed history will be taken and you will be asked questions about:
The problem(s) you have
How and when it started
What you are finding difficult to do
Your general health and any medication you are taking (please bring names)
This questioning gives an indicator as to what could be causing your problem and is essential to the assessment.
The area will then be examined. Depending on the area this can mean undressing to your underwear so you may wish to bring shorts/vest. The movement of your joints, muscles and nerves will be looked at to see if there is any restriction. This is done through observation of movements, special tests and palpation. Your strength and posture will also be examined to help determine the cause of your problem.
A treatment plan will then be decided between yourself and the physiotherapist. Treatment is very individual to each person and based on the latest evidence based practice. Treatment will be aimed at achieving your goals and restoring your function. Treatment options include mobilisations, exercise, acupuncture, soft tissue manipulation, taping, posture advice and lifestyle advice. Restoring your function and quality of life is at the forefront of treatment, enabling you to maintain indepedence.
Exercise: Tailored exercises to help your body move with less pain and to build strength. Exercise can be recommeneded to improve your general health and mobility. The aim of physiotherapy is to help you manage in the long term and continuing to do exercises is often the key.
Manual Therapy: This includes mobilisations of joints and soft tissue. Hands on treatment to help relieve pain, joint stiffness and muscle tension so that the body can start moving better. Whilst improving movement in different parts of the body it can help to promote relaxation.
Education and advice: Physiotherapist are well placed to advise on things that affect our daily lives, such as posture, sleeping positions, lifting and carrying techniques. General health and well being advice can be given regarding taking effective regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight. You will be provided with expert information on your condition.
Acupuncture: This can be used to help reduce pain and promote recovery in many areas of the body by inserting fine needles into specific points of the body, This is often used in combination with other physiotherapy treatment.
Transcutaneus Electrical Stimulation (TENS): a small, battery-operated device is used to deliver an electric current to the affected area, with the aim of relieving pain.