Physical therapy usually requires a time commitment and can sometimes be uncomfortable. Patients who wonder if physical therapy can help them or is worth the effort may consider the following benefits.
Physical therapy can help patients experiencing chronic or acute pain due to a wide range of conditions, including:
- Sprains and strains
- Degenerative disc disease
Therapists may apply various techniques to reduce muscle tension and inflammation. Common pain-relieving modalities include passive and active movement, ultrasound, and heat and ice applications.
Increases Range of Motion
Joints that are flexible and fluid can improve a patient’s ability to move, recover from an injury and avoid future injuries. Also, stretches and other targeted exercises bring oxygen and nutrients to affected joints and muscles, improving flexibility, strength and mobility.
Physical therapists can teach patients how to move their bodies to avoid injuries. For example, they may recommend techniques for lifting, pulling, and pushing heavy objects to prevent muscle strains and tears or demonstrate how to activate various muscle groups to avoid muscle overuse injuries.
Weak leg and core muscles, dizziness and numbness from injuries and neurological, vestibular or nerve abnormalities may cause poor balance and falls. Physical therapists teach patients exercises that enhance flexibility, strength and posture and reactivate nerve pathways to improve their sense of their bodies in space and prevent falls.
Cardiac patients often undergo physical therapy to restore their lung capacity and stamina. For such patients, breathing and endurance exercises can dramatically improve their life quality.
Patients who undergo physical therapy soon after their injuries can improve their recovery rates by avoiding compensatory muscle and joint movements that could cause further problems. In addition, physical therapy techniques reduce inflammation, ease movement, improve strength, send nutrients to the injury site via blood flow to encourage post-injury healing or improve impaired body function.
Chronic inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues can lead to painful tears or muscle and joint constriction. Sometimes, these conditions require surgery to restore proper use of the affected body part. Physical therapy modalities may help patients avoid the discomfort and financial costs of surgery by reducing inflammatory pain, improving movement, and promoting blood flow that promotes healing naturally.
Physical Therapy Is Worth The Effort
Although physical therapy requires patience and commitment, most people find that it is worth the effort because it is an effective alternative to surgery and chronic discomfort that can improve someone’s quality of life.
Schedule an evaluation with a local physical therapist such as LeMoine Physical Therapy to learn more about how you can benefit from physical therapy.