Physical therapy has become a very important part of our lives. People who suffer from injuries or diseases often seek out physical therapists for their expertise. Physical therapy can also be beneficial for those who want to improve their fitness levels.
Physical therapy is a type of healthcare that involves treating patients through exercise, massage, heat/cold treatments, electrical stimulation, and other techniques. The goal of physical therapy is to restore function and mobility after injury or illness.
Here are six ways physical therapy can make a difference in your daily life:
Improves balance and prevents falls
Balance is a key component of good health, but it’s also one of the most common reasons people end up in the emergency room or hospital. In fact, more than half of all injuries are related to falling, according to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC). And while you may be able to get back on your feet after an injury, if you’ve had multiple falls, you’re at greater risk for future problems. That’s why it’s important to take steps now to prevent falls from happening.
One way to do that? By working with a physical therapist who specializes in fall prevention. Physical therapists have been shown to reduce the number of falls by as much as 50 percent among older adults. They help patients develop strategies to improve their balance, strength, coordination, and endurance so they can avoid falls.
Manages age-related problems
As we grow older, our bodies begin to break down. Our muscles lose mass, our bones become brittle, and our joints stiffen. These changes can lead to pain, muscle weakness, and even arthritis. But there are things we can do to slow these processes down.
A physical therapist can help us stay active and keep our mobility intact as we age. For example, physical therapists can teach us how to exercise safely and effectively, especially when it comes to exercises like walking and standing. They can also work with us to manage any chronic conditions that might cause joint stiffness, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, fibromyalgia, and other musculoskeletal disorders.
When we talk about improving mobility, we often think about getting out of bed, going downstairs, or taking a walk. But mobility goes beyond just being able to stand up straight and move around. It includes having the strength to lift heavy objects, bend over, reach above our heads, climb stairs, carry groceries, and pick up small children. Because mobility is so closely tied to overall health, physical therapists play a vital role in helping people maintain their independence as they age.
Manages heart & lung disease
Heart and lung diseases are some of the leading causes of death worldwide. According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular disease accounts for nearly 17 million deaths each year, making it the world’s top killer. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is another major problem. COPD affects millions of Americans, causing shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing. Both of these conditions require regular monitoring and treatment. Fortunately, physical therapists are trained to assess and treat both heart and lung issues. They can provide noninvasive forms of treatment, including breathing techniques, stretching, strengthening, and aerobic activities.
Reduces or eliminates pain
Pain is something we all deal with at some point in our lives. Whether it’s a minor ache or a debilitating condition, pain can make everyday tasks difficult. Pain can also interfere with sleep, which makes it harder to function throughout the day. If you suffer from chronic pain, you know firsthand that managing it can be challenging. Physical therapists specialize in treating the pain associated with various conditions, such as arthritis pain, cancer, diabetes, fibromyalgia, headache, hip/knee replacement surgery, low back pain, neck pain, joint pain, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, sports injuries, and more. By combining specialized training with advanced technology, physical therapists have the skills needed to diagnose and treat pain.
Ready to get your health back on track?
Physical therapy can help improve your quality of life. For more information, contact Rehab For Life today! We provide personalized effective rehabilitation programs so that you can maximize your function quickly and safely. We want you to overcome your injury or impairment just as much as you do! Contact us today to get started!