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10 Benefits of Physiotherapy - What can it help with?

In this article

  • Introduction
  • What is Physiotherapy?
  • Why Physiotherapy?
  • 10 Benefits of Physiotherapy
  • What Can Physiotherapy Help with?
  • Types of Physiotherapy
  • What’s Involved in Physiotherapy?
  • How to Find a Physiotherapist

Introduction

Whether you’re suffering from an injury, experiencing pain, or simply looking to improve your overall body function and movement, you’ll want to consider physiotherapy.


In this article we look at what physiotherapy is, why it’s beneficial, and what you can expect from physiotherapy treatment.

What is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy, also known as Physical Therapy (PT), is the treatment provided to promote, maintain, rehabilitate, and strengthen your physical health and improve your overall well-being. Physiotherapists are registered university educated health professionals and movement experts who treat injuries and conditions that impact movement. Your physiotherapist's goal is to improve your quality of life. They take a holistic approach, addressing not only the physical aspects of your well-being, but also your emotional, psychological, and social well-being using rehabilitative interventions that include education, manual therapy, and other modalities. Physiotherapists work with people of all ages (even kids) to develop customized programs designed to restore and improve functional ability and movement.


They help individuals whose function and movement are impacted by:


  • Disease
  • Health conditions
  • Injury
  • Environmental factors
  • Aging
  • Disorders
  • Body composition issues

Why Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapists use the best available evidence to design treatment plans specific to your unique needs and goals. They help to:


  • Improve and restore movement and function
  • Manage pain
  • Reduce symptoms of conditions and diseases
  • Recover from and prevent injury

10 Benefits of Physiotherapy Treatment


1. Pain Reduction and Management

Pain is a sensation triggered by chemicals released in the body where disease and injury have occurred. Not all pain is created equal. We tend to categorize pain as related to or coming from a damaged structure (acute, nerve, referred, mechanical) or primarily being centrally driven (typically chronic pain experienced by a heightened sense of threat from the central nervous system). Pain is multifaceted and complex, so physiotherapists use a combination of diagnosis and education to understand your pain and empower you to manage it, along with a combination of manual therapy, therapeutic modalities and exercise therapy to decrease your pain, modulate your pain perception, and promote healing. As time passes,your level of pain should decrease as the tissues have healed and as your physiotherapist has addressed calming down the central nervous system.


2. Strong Muscles and Joints

Although physiotherapists are not physical trainers or fitness trainers, they have extensive in-depth training in exercise prescription for special populations and effective physiotherapy treatment often involves exercise therapy by incorporating individualized exercise programs. Proper and consistent practice of these movements can improve your muscle and joint function and strength as well as your bone density and cardiovascular health.


3. Better Movement and Balance

Physiotherapy involves stretching and strengthening exercises to help restore your ability to move, maintain balance and stability, and prevent falls. Being able to move better increases your confidence, allows for independence, and gives you the benefit of enjoying all aspects of life's physical pleasures and demands.


4. Recover From Surgery

There is almost always some level of discomfort after surgery, if not significant pain. The good news is that physiotherapy can use a variety of modalities to aid in post-surgery rehabilitation and pain management. To help yourself maintain a positive and focused mindset, you’ll want to set goals with your physiotherapist. This will keep your rehabilitation progress on track, and give you something to work towards.


5. Restore Pre-Injury Activity

Your return to pre-injury activity will vary depending on several factors, including: the severity of the injury, your pre-injury level of fitness, your age, and the demands of your activity. Physiotherapists target your injury from multiple angles to restore your functionality, strength and flexibility. The goal is to get you back to your pre-injury activity as quickly and safely as possible, while also reducing the odds of your injury or condition from occurring again.


6. Drug-free Treatment

Rather than relying solely on medication to manage a condition, physiotherapists combine exercise therapy, manual therapy, and various treatment modalities including shockwave therapy, ultrasound therapy, therapeutic taping, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), cryotherapy, and thermotherapy. This multimodal approach reduces your dependency on medicine, and instead offers a healthier and more sustainable method of recovery.


7. Accurate Diagnosis

The goal of physiotherapy is to address your pain, help you recover, and achieve your lifestyle goals. However, many individuals suffering from physical pain or discomfort are often sitting in frustration regarding their progress and pain. The most common problem is an inaccurate diagnosis and a lack of understanding of what is going on and why there is pain. The most successful physiotherapists do a comprehensive evaluation and assessment right at the start to identify the root causes of your symptoms.


8. Improve Fitness and Athletic Performance

Athletes or physically active people who want to perform better in their sport or elevate their fitness, often look to sports physiotherapy as a way to maximize their performance potential. Physiotherapists use various strategies to improve body functionality and strength.


9. Improve Mental Health

There is a strong fundamental link between mental and physical health. Everyone who has experienced physical suffering understands the impact it has on your emotional and mental well-being. Physiotherapy helps to improve your physical health so you can live a happy, pain-free, and enjoyable lifestyle.


10. Avoid Surgery

Surgery may not be needed if physiotherapy helps you eliminate pain or heal from an injury. Even if surgery is required, you may benefit from pre-surgery physiotherapy. You’ll have a faster post-surgery recovery by going into a surgery stronger and in better shape.

What Can Physiotherapy Help With?

Common Conditions that Physiotherapists Treat:


  • Arthritis
  • Hachilles ruptures
  • ACL tears
  • Ankle sprains
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Back Pain
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Falls Prevention
  • Fractures
  • Groin strains
  • Hand injuries
  • Headaches & Migraines
  • Hip flexor strains
  • Hyper mobility
  • Hyperextension injuries
  • Incontinence
  • Mid-back strains
  • Neck Pain
  • Pelvic floor dysfunction urinary & fecal incontinence, vulvodynia, dyspareunia, interstitial cystitis, bladder pain syndrome, endometriosis, genitourinary syndrome of menopause, dysmenorrhea)
  • Pregnancy and postpartum dysfunctions
  • Persistent pain (Chronic pain, Acute pain, Nerve pain, Phantom pain, Local pain, Referred pain, Mechanical pain, Chemical pain)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Post-surgical complications (Ankle fractures, ACL reconstruction, Knee replacement, Hip replacements, Arthroscopic surgeries, Shoulder repairs)
  • Running Injuries
  • Sciatica
  • Shoulder Injuries
  • Sports Injuries

Types of Physiotherapy

There are many types of physiotherapy. Some of these specializations can include:


  • Orthopaedic physiotherapy: Treats musculoskeletal injuries, involving ligaments, tendons, muscles, and bones.
  • Geriatric physiotherapy: Helps older adults who develop conditions affecting their mobility and physical function.
  • Neurological physiotherapy: Helps people with neurological conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease, brain injury, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis.
  • Cardiovascular and pulmonary rehabilitation: Benefits people affected by some cardiopulmonary conditions and surgical procedures.
  • Wound care therapy: Helps ensure that a healing wound is receiving adequate oxygen and blood by way of improved circulation.
  • Vestibular therapy: Treats balance problems that can result from inner ear conditions.
  • Decongestive therapy: Helps drain accumulated fluid in patients with lymphedema and other conditions that involve fluid accumulation.
  • Pelvic floor rehabilitation: Helps treat conditions that affect the pelvic floor, such as urinary or fecal incontinence, urgency (fecal or urinary), pelvic pain, and pre- and postnatal complications, endometriosis, genitourinary syndrome of menopause, dysmenorrhea, vulvodynia and dyspareunia.
  • Pre- and postnatal therapy (postpartum physiotherapy): Helps to address lower back pain, incontinence, constipation, pubic bone pain, sacrum and tailbone pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome as a result of physical changes experienced during pregnancy.

What’s Involved in Physiotherapy?


Assessment

During your initial appointment, your physiotherapist will conduct a thorough examination and assessment of your needs. It is a comprehensive intake of your health history, a full-body movement evaluation, and biomechanical assessment.


Diagnosis

The objective of the assessment is to determine a diagnosis of your condition. This requires going beyond the surface-level issues that you’re already aware of, to look for deeper underlying issues that may be responsible for your symptoms. Your physiotherapist will also want to understand why you have the condition, including impairments that either caused or are a result of the condition.


Education

As your physiotherapist learns more about your body, and gains an understanding of where your pain is coming from and its specific triggers, they’ll use their knowledge to educate you so that you are aware of how your body works, and even more importantly, feel empowered to manage your pain.


Treatment Planning

Once your physiotherapist has properly identified and diagnosed the issue, they’ll work with you to create a personalized treatment plan. It will include your personal goals, and a robust plan with exercises and other treatments to help you reach them. To get the most efficient and impactful results, the best physiotherapists use a multimodal approach by using a variety of treatments to address your needs. Your rehabilitation program may include treatments like manual therapy, behavioural modifications, exercise prescriptions, and other treatment modalities.


Physiotherapy Treatment

Your physiotherapist may prescribe any of the following forms of therapy:

  • Exercise Therapy: Improves mobility, decompressing joints, improving muscle stabilization, improving strength, improving balance and enhancing flexibility.
  • Manual Therapy: Decreases muscle spasms, easing mechanical stress on injured joints, and improving fluid exchange to decongest joints and soft tissue where swelling is present.
  • Shockwave Therapy: Sound waves stimulate parts of the body by increasing microcirculation and metabolic activity to treat many conditions, such as plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, patellar tendinopathy, calcific tendinitis, epicondylalgia, trigger points, and achilles tendinopathy.
  • Therapeutic Taping: Relieves pain, unloads muscle and nerve tissue, and improves joint stability for both the athletic and general population.
  • Ultrasound Therapy: Speeds up recovery by providing pain relief and reducing swelling through sound wave vibration in the tissue cells that facilitate nutrient flow and fluid movement.
  • Transcutaneous electrical neuromuscular stimulation (TENS): Used to help modulate pain (also known as electrotherapy).
  • Cryotherapy and Thermotherapy: Uses ice or heat as a therapeutic intervention to decrease pain in joint and muscle as well as soft tissues by improving the symptoms of certain conditions, particularly with musculoskeletal injuries and soft tissue injuries.

Collaboration

You will get the best results if you are invested and engaged in the treatment process. Ask questions, do your prescribed “homework”, and keep an optimistic attitude!


Maintenance

As your physiotherapist incorporates your new program, they’ll evaluate your progress and make adjustments to your treatment to make sure you’re on the right track. When you’ve met your goals, your physiotherapist will put together a maintenance plan that empowers you and suits your lifestyle! The goal is for you to enjoy lasting results.


How to Find a Physiotherapist


  • Track-record: Ask around, talk to people about their experiences, and look at reviews to make sure the physiotherapist has a proven track record of success!
  • Proximity: For convenience purposes, find a physiotherapist that is geographically accessible. If you’re in Mississauga or Etobicoke (Ontario), consider LIFT Physiotherapy!
  • Specialization: Consider the physiotherapists areas of expertise and types of conditions they treat so that you’re being treated by a professional who can truly help you.
  • Compatible Personality: Your physiotherapist will be your partner in recovery, so make sure you feel comfortable around them!

Are you ready to get back to your best self? If so, get in touch with LIFT Physiotherapy to start experiencing the benefits of physiotherapy treatment!

Ready to Get Started?

Please contact us or book a consultation online

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At LIFT Physiotherapy, we specialize in physiotherapy and wellness services in Mississauga. Our team of experienced professionals uses a multimodal approach to help you reach your goals.

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