Physiotherapy helps to restore movement and function when someone is affected by an injury, illness or disability. It can also help to reduce the risk of future injury or illness. It can help you to manage your condition, improve your quality of life and help reduce your risk of injury or illness in the future.
Physiotherapy can be helpful for people of all ages with a wide range of health conditions, including problems affecting the:
- Bones, joints and soft tissue, such as back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain and sports injuries.
- Brain or nervous system, such as movement problems resulting from a stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS) or Parkinson’s disease.
- Heart and circulation, such as rehabilitation after a heart attack.
- Lungs and breathing, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cystic fibrosis.
What will happen when I meet a physiotherapist?
During your first session, a physiotherapist will ask you questions about your condition, general health and lifestyle, what you find easy and difficult to do and what you want to achieve. This will ensure you receive the most effective health and support.
They will examine the area that needs to be treated, such as your knees, back, spine, hips or neck, and this may include applying pressure to help them understand your condition. They may also ask you to walk or lift objects to they can look at your posture or where your body is either strong or has a weakness.
They will use this information to produce a tailored treatment and exercise plan that they think will help you. They will also demonstrate some exercises you can do during your session and at home, as looking after yourself will help you manage your condition. They may also decide you need some other treatments and will discuss this with you.
At the end of the session a follow-up appointment for further treatment will be booked if they feel it’s necessary.
Your treatment will continue until the problem has resolved, you can manage your condition or your progress has not changed.
Risks of musculoskeletal physiotherapy
Some people may experience some temporary discomfort, particularly when they first start physiotherapy. This is a sign that your body is adjusting and responding to treatment.
Benefits of musculoskeletal physiotherapy
- Exercise programmes help to relax, strengthen and take pressure off the joint.
- Physiotherapists use a variety of different manual techniques to relieve pain, promote mobility and to help return the muscles and joints to normal.
- The holistic/biomechanical approach of physiotherapy in the lower limb can improve someone’s pain or function.
- Physiotherapy helps to keep joints and muscles moving and maintains mobility.
- A physiotherapist can tailor an individual exercise plan to suit your needs and provide the best possible advice.
- Physiotherapists use goal setting to return people back to exercise and activities.
- Staying active increases the life of your joins.
- Physiotherapy can be extremely to help reduce and manage pain, perform daily tasks and improve your quality of life.
- It is useful for all levels of osteoarthritis – mild/moderate and severe.
How long will an appointment take?
This will vary depending on your condition, but the first session will usually last longer as the physiotherapist will want to understand your condition and your goals. Future appointments usually last 30 to 60 minutes.
Physiotherapy is provided by specially-trained and regulated practitioners called physiotherapists. They often work as part of a wider team of other clinicians and specialists to ensure all aspects of someone’s care is met. A physiotherapist looks at the person as a whole and will consider their general lifestyle, overall health and wellbeing, including other conditions they may have, and what their goals are so they can tailor their advice and support.
- Physiotherapists can give general advice about things that can affect your life, such as posture and correct lifting or carrying techniques to help prevent injuries.
- They will look at how you move and tailor exercises to improve your general health and mobility, and to strengthen specific parts of your body.
- A physiotherapist may also use their hands to relieve pain and stiffness, and to encourage better movement of the body.