Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation is a process that provides palliative care to an individual by re-establishing normal functions of the body. Often, when a person is diagnosed with an illness, his/her functional capacities get limited. Rehabilitation helps mitigate the consequences of any ailment or injury and improves the quality of life.
Physiotherapy is a type of rehabilitation that helps a patient regain his/her physical strength.
What are physiotherapy and rehabilitation?
Physiotherapy is carried out by physiotherapists to ensure the healthy physical condition of a patient. Physiotherapists are professionals trained to treat any condition that interferes with patients’ physical functioning.
They may perform physical examinations to diagnose the type of treatment a patient needs, which varies from person to person. The most common techniques they use include exercises and stretching, acupuncture, and so on. While rehab centers provide rehabilitation, physiotherapy involves both center and home visits.
Who qualifies for physiotherapy and rehabilitation?
According to the World Health Organization, rehabilitation is beneficial for over 2.4 billion people worldwide. The demand for physiotherapy has gone up, considering several factors, including:
Injuries or accidents: Injuries from sports accidents need physiotherapy as a priority treatment. Physiotherapy is also useful for those who have amputation or disability, such as in the spine or the brain.
Pain: Pain in the neck, back, or joints is generally the first symptom. Chronic pain or stinging sensation like pins and needles indicate that you need an early visit to a physiotherapist to evaluate the cause.
Changes in physical movement: Sometimes, you may notice some unusual changes in your body strength. Standing for long periods of time, needing support while walking or climbing stairs, and losing balance can be challenging.
Postoperative procedures: In surgical procedures such as knee or hip replacement, physiotherapy can help facilitate post-surgical recovery.
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Why are physiotherapy and rehabilitation conducted?
Physiotherapy is a therapeutic procedure that may be carried out for the following reasons:
Ensuring independence: After surgery or accident, many people become dependent on family members even for basic activities such as eating, brushing teeth, combing, etc. That may happen in old age as well. Physiotherapy empowers them by engaging them in regular exercises so that they can be self-dependent for these tasks.
Prevents illness: At the onset of arthritis, a person may experience pain, stiffness, or swelling in the joints. Physiotherapy can help prevent severe diseases such as arthritis if treatment is provided at the initial stage.
Avoids drug use: Certain medications can have side effects on the body's internal organs. For instance, painkillers should be taken in moderation. Physiotherapy, being a natural procedure, can help in avoiding unnecessary drug consumption.
What are the advantages of physiotherapy?
Physiotherapy can have innumerable advantages such as:
- Improves the motor abilities and flexibility in movement.
- Ensures an active lifestyle that can be accomplished through exercises.
- Encourages mental well-being along with physical well-being.
- Prevents any injuries by promoting fitness through regular exercises.
- Physiotherapy ensures quick and sustainable healing.
What are the risks or complications?
While physiotherapy is a non-invasive and painless procedure, some risks may be there. These can include:
- Inadequate maintenance of therapy tools such as heating pads, machines, acupuncture needles, etc.
- Wrong evaluation or assessment of the health condition of a patient or giving him/her inappropriate treatment. Visit a doctor if you observe no results from physical therapy.
- Physiotherapy can lead to complications such as stiffness or muscular fatigue. Inform your therapist about the same.
Since physiotherapists provide treatment separately, a prescription from a doctor is not mandatory. However, if you have undergone any treatment under the supervision of a medical professional, notify your physiotherapist about the same.
No, physiotherapy does not demand any significant changes in eating or lifestyle habits. If there are any, you will be guided before initiating the therapeutic procedure.
Physiotherapy aims at rebuilding physical strength and developing motor abilities that may be impaired. It cannot guarantee treatment for your health conditions.