The Most Common Physiotherapy Treatments for Healing & Wellbeing
Physiotherapy Malvern - Every year, thousands of Australians seek out some form of physical therapy for injury recovery, chronic pain, sore and stiff bodies and to promote better general health.
These people generally seek out physiotherapy via medical references from doctors or other healthcare professionals, or by direct referral from a friend. As Physiotherapists are primary care practitioners, you can visit us at Ace Sports Clinic without a referral from your GP.
Though most people will be familiar with the term physiotherapy, this is actually a banner for a range of therapies and treatments that help the body heal and rehabilitate after injury, help people manage physical pain, and increase flexibility, range of motion and strength.
Below we will discuss the benefits of physiotherapy, what techniques and methods are most commonly used, and what other physical therapy modalities are offered and applied here at ACE physiotherapy, Malvern.
The most common treatments used in physiotherapy
Physiotherapy seeks to restore, promote and maintain physical health in people recovering from a medical procedure or surgery, have suffered an injury that affects their physical strength and range of motion, or has left them with, or creating chronic pain and discomfort.
Healthcare professionals like physiotherapists, osteopaths and chiropractors use a range of diagnostic techniques including physical examination, strength and mobility testing, palpation and incorporated laboratory and imaging diagnostics like X-ray, CT-scanning and MRI imaging to select which therapy is best for any given condition.
Depending on the results or findings, physiotherapists can offer a range of treatments that have been proven most effective for the injury or physical issue that has been isolated. Physiotherapists are also able to prescribe rehabilitative and performance exercises that will get you back to your best.
Below we will look at some of the main techniques used by physiotherapists in Australia, and how they help people recover from negative physical conditions, improve their performance or gain optimal health. Read on to learn more.
ROM (range of motion) exercises
In the early stages after injury or corrective surgery, it is important to give your body the professionally recommended time of rest and recuperation, allowing your body to do the amazing healing it does naturally.
These recommendations may include things like regular icing to reduce swelling and inflammation, compression to aid in healing and support, and balanced periods of movement and relative rest as recommended by your primary healthcare provider.
After this period, your body may need some help to regain its strength and promote a normal range of motion. ROM exercises are some of the most common therapies applied by physiotherapists.
ROM therapy promotes movement in the injured joints and tissues incrementally as the condition improves, and encourages improved circulation, helping the body perform all its incredible natural healing functions.
Incrementally and intentionally increasing the range of motion in joints and tissues like muscle and ligaments help prevent muscular atrophy and joint stiffness that occurs after long immobility periods. ROM exercises also help re-align injured tissue and remove swelling.
It would seem one of the most commonly used physiotherapy techniques involves helping the body to heal itself, and reminding it how to function normally after injury or medical intervention.
Electrotherapy has become more popular among physiotherapists in recent years and appears to yield impressive results for patients. This electronically generated, energy-based technique involves applying electrode pads to the skin over the affected area.
Electrical pulses are then fed through the electrode pads causing the muscles to contract and release independently; this, in turn, helps prevent muscular atrophy, increases muscular movement, and may also help the body deal with pain more effectively.
Quite often, this type of therapy is used in conjunction with other treatments, such as ultrasound and massage.
Japanese chiropractor Dr Kenzo Kase developed Kinesio-tape in the 1970s. This product has seen significant advancements with the development of new textiles and compounds over the last few decades. It continues to help people recover from injury and is often seen on professional athletes to enhance their performance.
Kinesio-taping offers a wide range of potential benefit to injured joints and tissues including:
- Pain alleviation
- Joint and muscle support
- Improved healing in soft tissue
- Reduced muscle fatigue and soreness
- Enhanced healing and more
Sometimes, your body just needs a little support and assistance to regain its strength, balance, mobility and durability.
Physiotherapists are highly trained in prescribing and monitoring the bodies response to exercise. With advanced training in anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, pathology and sports, our physiotherapists in Malvern are the place to start if you are recovering from an injury, want to improve your fastest time or get the right program to achieve your goals. Exercise is one of the best ways to enhance our health and reduce the risk of chronic disease. Exercise positively impacts all systems of our body and by choosing a physiotherapist, you will be sure you are getting the right exercise program for your needs as physiotherapists also have advanced training in exercise for chronic health diseases such as diabetes, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure and weight management. Understanding ‘why’ you are doing an exercise and what it will help with is all part of us involving you and ensuring you don’t get re-injured.
Dry needling reaches into the muscles releasing deep knots, tightness and tension providing pain relief and improved muscle activation. This is an effective treatment for acute and chronic muscle pain, rehabilitation from injury and neuromuscular dysfunction. It works by using a thin filament needle to penetrate the skin and stimulate underlying myofascial trigger points. These active trigger points can be a source of local and referred pain, headaches, tension and ‘sciatica’ type symptoms. Dry needling is based on a medical theory and while it can be uncomfortable, it is unequaled in eliminating active myofascial trigger points to reduce stress and muscle tension.
Ultrasound utilises sound frequencies to penetrate deep into the body's tissue from the skin's surface, generating deep, gentle heat into the affected area.
Although a controversial therapy, there are indications that the deep, penetrative heat created by this ultrasound can relax muscle tissue, increase local blood flow, and aid slow-healing and chronic injuries.
Recent findings by medical science have shown that ultrasound therapy could aid in the healing of bone injury; however, more research needs to be conducted.
Thermo and cryotherapy
Heating and cooling injuries is an old, tried and tested method of helping the body deal with pain, injury and inflammation, and medical science continues to find more benefits to utilising hot and cold therapies to treat physical conditions.
Thermal or heat therapy has a wide range of benefits for sore or injured muscles and joints. Some of these benefits include:
- Relaxation and increased flexibility of muscles tissue
- Improved blood circulation to affected areas
- Effective relief for pain and discomfort
These factors help the body reduce stress, loosen tight tissue, and allow your body to heal itself more effectively.
Cryo or cold therapy is not just useful in the initial treatment of an injury. Its many benefits are gaining popularity the more we learn about the human body's complex dynamics.
Some of the benefits that cryotherapy offers sore bodies and physical injury include:
- Reduction in general inflammation
- Pain relief from reduced nerve activity
- Relief and reduction of arthritic conditions
- Stress relief via pain management and more
Cryotherapy is sometimes performed with customised cold technologies but can be just as effective with the use of ice packs, ice baths and cryo-sprays.
Therapeutic massage, sometimes referred to as STM or soft tissue mobilisation, is an excellent complementary technique to help treat chronic pain and improve recovery post-injury.
Soft tissue massage helps to heat, loosen and relax tight, sore muscles, stimulate blood flow to the affected areas, and reduce tissue swelling around inflamed joints.
Massage therapy also helps people cope with stress and tension, reducing their stress hormone cortisol levels, which allows the body to pay more attention to healing and maintaining a balanced system.
Our physiotherapists will work with you to select the best treatments based on your preference, condition and goals.
Other ACE Sports Clinic treatments
The team here at ACE Sports Clinic offer more than just physiotherapy in Malvern. Our team of highly-trained health professionals believe in taking a holistic approach to our client's health and believe in helping the body work better as a symbiotic system, rather than just treating targeted areas of concern.
In some circumstances, a range of collaborative therapies may be offered to optimise our client's results and have them on the path to an active, healthy and happy life.
Some of the therapies that we use in conjunction with physiotherapy include:
- Chiropractic Care
- Myotherapy or Remedial Massage
- Exercise Physiology or Strength & Conditioning
- Clinical Pilates
If you are seeking physiotherapy in Malvern and surrounding suburbs, call our friendly staff to arrange a consultation, or fill out our online contact form, and one of a team will make contact with you at a time that suits best.