How Physical Therapy Can Prevent Injuries
Customized physical therapy may be a useful way to ease low back pain, which affects an estimated 31 million Americans a new study says. Researchers from La Trobe University observed that ‘many patients with low-back disorders persisting beyond 6 weeks do not recover.
Ways a Physical Therapist can Help Prevent Injury
1. Avoid surgery
Surgery can be painful and expensive. Plus sometimes the surgical outcomes are even worse than the pre-surgery condition. For this reason, surgery should be considered a last resort. Of course, when it is required and medically necessary, then it can be a good (or even the best) option. However, did you know that not all surgeries are medically necessary? Some conditions can be treated non-invasive treatment options. Physical therapy is one such option. Many muscular injuries and health conditions can be treated with physical therapy, or physical therapy combined with another non-invasive modality.
2. Improve mobility
There are many studies, including this study from Europe, which have found a strong correlation between physical therapy and an increase in functional mobility. And it’s not hard to imagine how this works. It’s very simple. Naturally, if we practice moving our body and increasing our range of motion, then it is likely to increase with practice. However, despite being something which is simple, it’s something we often forget. Are you taking the time to exercise? If you have past injuries, working with a trained physical therapist can help. Our physical therapists can design exercises for your individual needs.
3. Manage age related issues
Age related issues, such as arthritis and osteoporosis, can greatly reduce mobility. Working with a physical therapist can help to slow down the effects of these conditions. Where surgery is indicated (e.g. a joint replacement), post surgical physical therapy can help regain mobility and range of motion.
4. Manage heart and lung disease
Even if you have a heart condition, it is still often recommended to maintain some level of exercise (although you should of course first consult with your cardiologist). Similarly, for pulmonary conditions, exercise can help strengthen the lungs. But where is the line between pushing yourself enough to be healthy, yet not so hard so as to exacerbate your condition? Physical therapists are here to help. They are trained to help patients with such conditions. Exercises can be controlled, so as to not push the body harder than necessary, but enough to generate positive results.
5. Improve balance and prevent future accidents
One of the best ways to maintain your health is to not injure yourself! But how can we decrease the chances of injuring ourselves? One way is to improve our balance. A physical therapist can work with you to strengthen your body, improve core strength, and lead to greater balance. It goes without saying that great balance should lead to less falls, resulting in less injuries.