Physical therapy helps people of all ages with medical problems, injuries and health conditions that limit their ability to move and function.
PTs use therapeutic exercises NC Center For Physical Therapy and manual therapy procedures to reduce pain, or remove it, such as joint and soft tissue mobilization and massage.
PTs also teach you how to use your body correctly to avoid future injuries. This can include learning how to sit up straight, walk on your feet without putting your heels down, or other movement habits that may cause injury.
1. Pain Relief
Pain can be a frustrating and debilitating experience. But it doesn’t have to be.
Physical therapists are trained in movement and can help you reduce pain. They will evaluate you based on your movement patterns and tailor your treatment plan to your unique health issues.
Unlike medications, which mask pain sensations and do not address the cause of pain, physical therapy treats the root issue of your pain.
Your physical therapist may perform hands-on treatments for your symptoms, such as heat/cold applications or electrical nerve stimulation (e-stim). They also teach you special exercises to help your body move more easily and safely.
You’ll be taught gentle aerobic exercise routines and stretching techniques to increase your range of motion and strengthen muscles. Strengthening exercises can help take pressure off nerves in your joints, including your spine, knees, hips, and elbows. Combined with stabilization exercises, these can be a powerful recovery tool.
Physical therapists can help patients build muscle strength to improve overall physical performance, including their ability to perform daily activities. This helps prevent injury and reduces the need for surgery.
Depending on your NC Center For PT fitness level and the stage of recovery you are in, a physical therapist will work with you to determine the best strengthening exercises for you. These exercises can include light, low-intensity resistance training.
After an injury or surgery, muscles can weaken quickly. These weak muscles can make it difficult to move, walk, or stand without assistance.
A PT can help restore your movement with therapeutic exercise, manual therapy procedures, and soft tissue manipulation techniques like massage. These treatments can also minimize pain and reduce the need for prescription drugs.
Stretching is essential in maintaining a normal range of motion and flexibility in joints and muscles. This can prevent scar formation after an injury or surgical procedure.
3. Reducing Headaches
If you suffer from frequent headaches, the pain can put a damper on your daily life and interfere with your ability to perform day-to-day activities. Rather than taking prescription or over-the-counter medications that may do nothing to help the problem, consider physical therapy for your headaches.
Physical therapists can evaluate the source of your headaches and develop a plan to reduce their frequency and intensity. They can also help you learn to manage your symptoms at home by improving posture, drinking plenty of water and fitting healthy exercises into your daily routine.
Headaches can be caused by a variety of issues, including poor posture, fatigue, dehydration and stress. They can also be the result of an underlying condition, such as a traumatic injury or chronic disease like arthritis.
4. Improved Balance
Improved balance can reduce your risk of falls and injury, including sprains. It can also prevent hip fractures, one of the most common injuries in older adults.
Your body’s ability to balance is a learned skill that can be improved through physical therapy exercises. The most important muscles involved in balance are your legs and core, but you can also train your proprioception (the sense of where you’re in space) through a variety of exercises.
Exercises that strengthen the core and hip stabilizers can help you develop better posture and improve your overall balance. They’re also a great way to avoid injuries like back pain and arthritis.
A physical therapist will Physical Therapy Clinic design an individualized program to address your specific balance issues and goals. These sessions can last a few weeks to several months with regular visits.
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