All You Need To Know About Physiotherapy.
What is physiotherapy?
Physiotherapy is a healthcare profession dedicated to improving quality of life by decreasing pain and restoring optimal movement and function.
The healthcare professionals who provide physiotherapy services are called physiotherapists. They are highly trained individuals and are skilled at identifying and treating various injuries and diseases and pre-and post-surgical rehabilitation.
Whatever your needs are, you can see a physiotherapist at any time. Because physiotherapists are direct-access practitioners, you do not require a referral from your doctor to see us.
What do Physiotherapists treat?
Physiotherapists are trained in various aspects of health and wellness and offer various rehabilitation services such as:
- Preventing and treating clients with conditions and injuries that involve muscles, ligaments, tendons, joints, nerves and bones. Physiotherapists frequently treat some common issues: back and neck pain, disc-related conditions, sciatica, headaches, rotator cuff strains, carpal tunnel, tendinitis, arthritis, sprained ankles, knee ligament injuries, and many others.
- Managing neurological and vestibular disorders like concussions, vertigo, neuronitis, labyrinthitis, or Meniere’s disease that may cause dizziness, headaches, nausea, balance deficits, double vision, nystagmus, and poor eye tracking.
- Providing rehabilitation in people who have suffered spinal cord damage or people with neurological diseases such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis.
- Providing rehabilitation and support for people suffering from diseases and injuries that affect the heart and lungs, like heart attacks or COPD.
- Helping patients get back to normal after surgeries like joint replacements, ligament repairs, fractures and amputations.
- Addressing women’s health concerns like pregnancy and birth, post-partum care, incontinence and pelvic floor dysfunction.
What treatment techniques do physiotherapists use?
Physiotherapists employ a combination of techniques, depending on the nature of the injury and the problem they are treating. The most common physiotherapy techniques are:
- Exercise: Using specific exercises and stretches to target muscle imbalances, weakness, poor movement patterns, poor range of motion and functional deficits.
- Manual therapy: Mobilizing joints and employing soft tissue techniques to reduce pain and muscle spasm, improve circulation and range of motion.
- Intramuscular stimulation (IMS): IMS (also known as dry needling) is the practice of inserting acupuncture needles into the affected muscles in order to reduce pain, muscle spasm and tension to restore optimal movement. Electrical stimulation may also be used in combination in some instances.
- Virtual reality: Using virtual reality headsets to assess neurological and vestibular disorders by precisely tracking and monitoring eye movement during various complex tasks to create the most precise and effective treatment plan for you. These high-tech devices can then use this information to create individualized rehabilitation programs that get you to perform various tasks and games to help improve your symptoms.
- Electrical muscle/ nerve stimulation (EMS/NMES): Using precise electrical currents to help suppress and block pain signals, increase muscle activation, and improve muscle strength or endurance.
- Bracing, taping, splinting: Use of various assistive, supportive and protective devices and equipment to improve pain, function, or to protect the area from further harm.
What should I expect from my first physiotherapy appointment?
Your first physiotherapy appointment will be an initial assessment. At Advantage Sport Medicine and Physiotherapy, you and your therapist will have a dedicated 60 minutes of one-on-one time to perform a detailed subjective history and objective examination.
In the subjective history, your physiotherapist will ask specific questions to get a better understanding of your past medical history and your experiences with your injury or disease/ condition.
The objective assessment involves having the therapist observe your movement and your limitations and perform a series of active and passive tests to identify potential causes of your symptoms. These tests may temporarily irritate your injury even further, but this may be necessary for your physiotherapist to isolate the cause of your issues.
By conducting a thorough assessment, your physiotherapist can gather as much information as possible before making a diagnosis and creating an individualized treatment plan, just for you.
What should I expect in my follow-up?
Your next appointments at Advantage Sport Medicine and Physiotherapy will be 30 minutes of one-on-one time with your physiotherapist where you can discuss any issues or progress that have come up since your previous session. Your therapist will also reassess some of the tests from the initial assessment to objectively measure any progress you have made. Your therapist may also employ different treatment techniques as well as progress your treatment plan if appropriate.
Why See Us?
Our unique clinic based in Edmonton and St. Albert offers multi-disciplinary services and a top-tier group of therapists to help you achieve your goals. At Advantage Sport Medicine and Physiotherapy, our dedicated team of physiotherapists, athletic therapists, kinesiologists, strength and conditioning coaches, and sports medicine physicians will help you develop a tailored rehabilitation plan.