A Physiotherapist’s role in your health care is very important, such as:
- Assessment of movement, strength, endurance and other physical abilities.
- Assessment of the impact of an injury or disability on physical function.
- Assessment of physical preparation for work and sports.
- Program planning and education to restore movement and reduce pain.
- Individualized treatment of an injury or disability based on scientific knowledge and a thorough assessment of the condition, environmental factors and lifestyle.
Physiotherapists provide valuable health care for people throughout their life – from birth to old age. For instance, physiotherapists can:
- Prevent and treat sports injuries;
- Restore and increase range of motion in joints;
- Increase co-ordination;
- Counsel and education in pre- and post-natal care;
- Design user-friendly homes and workplaces;
- Educate clients in the use of devices such as canes, crutches and wheelchairs;
- Help injured individuals return to work successfully.
BENEFITS OF PHYSIOTHERAPY:
- Physiotherapy can make a difference in an individual’s ability to live an active, healthy lifestyle. For many seniors, disabled or chronically ill people, physiotherapy is the key to restoring and maintaining a level of physical function that permits independent living. Physiotherapy is one way to successfully push physical limitations to secure the Freedom to Function.
- Physiotherapy benefits include decreasing pain, improving joint mobility, increasing strength and coordination and improved cardiorespiratory function. Everyone can benefit from physiotherapy whether you are living with a chronic illness, recovering from a work injury or suffering after a sports activity.
- Physiotherapy increases your independence and gives you the Freedom to Function in your home, workplace or your favorite leisure activity. Physiotherapy offers a range of specialized services of benefit to patients with heart and lung disease, traumatic, workplace and athletic injuries, amputations, arthritic joints, stroke, brain injury, spinal cord and nerve injury, cancer and pre- and postsurgical needs
Osteopathy is a form of drug-free non-invasive manual medicine that focuses on total body health by treating and strengthening the musculoskeletal framework, which includes the joints, muscles and spine. Its aim is to positively affect the body’s nervous, circulatory and lymphatic systems.
This therapy is a unique holistic (whole body) approach to health care. Osteopaths do not simply concentrate on treating the problem area, but use manual techniques to balance all the systems of the body, to provide overall good health and wellbeing.
Dr. Andrew Taylor Still established the practice of Osteopathy in the late 1800s in the United States of America, with the aim of using manual ‘hands on’ techniques to improve circulation and correct altered biomechanics, without the use of drugs.
Osteopaths respect the body’s natural ability as a self-regulating mechanism and only intervene when pain or discomfort is present. The benefits of osteopathy are the general improvement in mobility and structural stability of the body. In turn, other systems of the body such as the circulatory, nervous and lymphatic systems function more effectively and for a number of general conditions, minimal treatment is required.
The body is often able to take care of itself, to compensate for injury. However, in some instances, the injury is greater than the body’s ability to adapt or heal. In other instances the body is not currently capable to regroup to be able to heal itself. This inability may be created by a number of reasons, and the injuries, sometimes even minor ones, start to create a problem.
In those cases, treatment is necessary to restore the balance within your body and assist your body to be able to use it natural reserves and strengths to heal itself. Osteopathic treatments are based on enabling your body to function properly.
Benefits of Osteopathic Treatment
Removes the underlying cause of pain
- Reduces pain and stiffness in muscles and joints
- Increases range of motions in the joints
- Treats spinal problems resulting from poor posture or spinal disk injuries
Relieves chronic pain through non-invasive treatment
- Decreases the stress on the joints
- Reduces tension in the body
- Relieves tension headaches and migraine headaches
Helps the body to adapt to hormonal and structural changes during pregnancy
- Reduces scars and adhesions
- Treats trauma resulting from accidents (Sport injuries, Motor vehicle injuries)
Encourages the body to heal itself
- Increase circulation
- Reduces blood pressure
Massage therapy is a comprehensive intervention involving a range of techniques to manipulate the soft tissues and joints of the body. The purpose of massage therapy is to prevent, develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function or relieve pain. It is a clinically-oriented health option that achieves undeniable results in the relief of an array of discomforts stemming from stress, muscular overuse and many chronic pain syndromes. Several research studies have illustrated that massage therapy is become accepted as a useful addition to conventional medical treatments, and by a mixture of populations. The therapeutic process is a partnership between client and therapist, working together towards common and realistic goals.
While many individuals might provide “massage”, massage therapy should be provided by a Registered Massage Therapist (RMT). An RMT is an individual who has completed a diploma program at a recognized school of massage therapy and who has passed a registration examination offered by the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario.
THE BENEFITS OF MASSAGE THERAPY
There are tremendous benefits to be achieved through regular massage therapy treatments from a Registered Massage Therapist. Whether your need is to have a moment of relaxation, reduce muscle tension or attain relief from chronic pain, a therapeutic massage can enhance your overall sense of emotional and physical well-being as well as your quality of life.
Massage therapy benefits people of all ages. While it benefits the injured, the ill and the stressed, the strength of massage therapy in preventing illness and conditions before they develop cannot be overlooked. Massage therapy can be used in the treatment of both acute and chronic stages of conditions.
The following is a list of conditions for which massage therapy, when provided by a Registered Massage Therapist, can prove beneficial:
|Anxiety and depression||Asthma and Emphysema|
|Back, leg, and neck pain||Cancer|
|Carpal tunnel syndrome (repetitive strain)||Chronic Fatigue syndrome|
|Fractures and edema||Gastrointestinal disorders|
|Headaches||Inflammatory conditions such as arthritis and bursitis|
|Insomnia||Kyphosis and Scoliosis|
|Multiple sclerosis||Parkinson’s disease|
|Muscle tension and spasm||Palliative care|
|Post-surgical rehabilitation||Pregnancy and labour support|
|Sports injuries||Strains and sprains|
|Stress and stress related conditions||Stroke|
Massage Therapy as Part of your Health Maintenance Plan
Therapeutic massage is an important part of your health maintenance plan, by:
Reducing or eliminating pain
Improving joint mobility
Improving immune system functioning
Increasing lymphatic drainage
Reducing depression and anxiety
Reducing tension within muscles
Increasing body awareness
The classical Chinese explanation is that channels of energy run in regular patterns through the body and over its surface. These energy channels, called meridians, are like rivers flowing through the body to irrigate and nourish the tissues. An obstruction in the movement of these energy rivers is like a dam that backs up in others. The meridians can be influenced by needling the acupuncture points; the acupuncture needles unblock the obstructions at the dams, and reestablish the regular flow through the meridians. Acupuncture treatments can therefore help the body’s internal organs to correct imbalances in their digestion, absorption, and energy production activities, and in the circulation of their energy through the meridians.
The modern scientific explanation is that needling the acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These chemicals will either change the experience of pain, or they will trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones which influence the body’s own internal regulating system. The improved energy and biochemical balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body’s natural healing abilities, and in promoting physical and emotional well-being.
The World Health Organization recognizes the use of acupuncture in the treatment of a wide range of medical problems, including:
- Digestive disorders: gastritis and hyperacidity, spastic colon, constipation, diarrhea.
- Respiratory disorders: sinusitis, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, recurrent chest infections.
- Neurological and muscular disorders: headaches, facial tics, neck pain, rib neuritis, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, various forms of tendinitis, low back pain, sciatica, osteoarthritis.
- Urinary, menstrual, and reproductive problems.
Acupuncture is particularly useful in resolving physical problems related to tension and stressand emotional conditions.
In the past 2,000 years, more people have been successfully treated with acupuncture than with all other health modalities combined. Today acupuncture is practiced widely in Asia, the Soviet Union, and in Europe. It is now being used more and more in America by patients and physicians. Acupuncture treatments can be given at the same time other techniques are being used, such as conventional Western medicine,osteopathic or chiropractic adjustments, and homeopathic or naturopathic prescriptions.
To enhance the value of a treatment, the following guidelines are important:
- Do not eat an unusually large meal immediately before or after your treatment.
- Do not over-exercise, engage in sexual activity, or consume alcoholic beverages within 6 hours before or after the treatment.
- Plan your activities so that after the treatment you can get some rest, or at least not have to be working at top performance. This is especially important for the first few visits.
- Continue to take any prescription medicines as directed by your regular doctor. Substance abuse (drugs and alcohol) especially in the week prior to treatment, will seriously interfere with the effectiveness of acupuncture treatments.
- Remember to keep good mental or written notes of what your response is to the treatment. This is important for your therapist to know so that the follow-up treatments can be designed to best help you and your problem.
The technology utilizes superluminous and laser diodes to irradiate diseased or traumatized tissue with photons. These particles of energy are selectively absorbed by the cell membrane and intracellular molecules, resulting in the initiation of a cascade of complex physiological reactions, leading to the restoration of normal cell structure and function.
The process is curative and therefore results in the elimination of symptoms including pain. In addition, it enhances the body’s immune system response and facilitates natural healing.
The therapy is completely safe and has no adverse side effects.
The technology is highly effective in the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions, arthritis, sports injuries, wound healing and a wide range of dermatological conditions.
SOME PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF LASER THERAPY INCLUDE:
- Endorphins – natural analgesics
- Cortisol – precursor of cortisone
- Growth hormone – instrumental in tissue repair
- ATP – improves and regulates cellular metabolism
In addition, there is –
- Increased protein synthesis – collagen, DNA, fibroblasts
- Venous and lymphatic flow facilitated
- Increased angiogenesis – elevation of oxygen saturation
- Enhanced immune response, etc.
These are just some of the many processes that accelerate cellular regeneration (cartilage, epithelium) and restore normal cell morphology and function.
CLINICAL BENEFITS OF LASER THERAPY:
- Highly effective for many disease conditions
- Eliminates pain
- Reduces the need for pharmaceuticals
- Restores normal range of motion and physical function
- Easily applied
- No known adverse effects
- No drug interactions
- Often makes surgical interventions unnecessary
- Provides a treatment alternative for patients that have not responded to conventional therapies
Homeopathy is based on the principle that you can treat ‘like cures like’, that is, a substance which causes symptoms when taken in large doses, can be used in small amounts to treat those same symptoms. For example, drinking too much coffee can cause sleeplessness and agitation, so according to this principle, when made into a homeopathic medicine, it could be used to treat people with these symptoms. This concept is sometimes used in conventional medicine, for example, the stimulant Ritalin is used to treat patients with ADHD, or small doses of allergens such as pollen are sometimes used to de-sensitise allergic patients. However, one major difference with homeopathic medicines is that substances are used in ultra high dilutions, which makes them non-toxic.Homeopathic medicines (which homeopaths call remedies) are prepared by specialist pharmacies using a careful process of dilution and succussion (a specific form of vigorous shaking).
HISTORY AND SCIENCE OF HOMEOPATHY:
As yet, science has not been able to explain the mechanism of action of ultra high dilutions in the body, but laboratory experiments have repeatedly demonstrated that homeopathically prepared substances cause biological effects.
There is also a growing body of research evidence that homeopathic medicines have clinical effects.
The principle of treating “like cures like” dates back to Hippocrates (460-377BC) but in its current form, homeopathy has been widely used worldwide for more than 200 years.
It was discovered by a German doctor, Samuel Hahnemann, who, shocked with the harsh medical practises of the day (which included blood-letting, purging and the use of poisons such as arsenic), looked for a way to reduce the damaging side-effects associated with medical treatment.
He began experimenting on himself and a group of healthy volunteers, giving smaller and smaller medicinal doses, and found that as well as reducing toxicity, the medicines actually appeared to be more effective the lower the dose. He also observed that symptoms caused by toxic ‘medicines’ such as mercury, were similar to those of the diseases they were being used to treat e.g. syphilis, which lead to the principle he described as ‘like cures like’.
Hahnemann went on to document his work, and his texts formed the foundations of homeopathic medicine as it is practised today.
Homeopaths often see patients with long-term, chronic problems, many of which have failed to respond to conventional medicine. As a system of medicine, homeopathy is aimed at treating the person, rather than the disease diagnosis, and as such can be considered in almost any ill health, where tissue has not been irrevocably damaged.
Most people visit a homeopath with a diagnosis from their doctor, and patients are encouraged to keep their medical practitioners informed as treatment progresses. Some people see a homeopath because they have side effects from conventional drugs, and others because conventional tests have failed to find the cause of their problem.
BENEFITS OF HOMEOPATHY:
There is a growing body of research evidence suggesting that treatment by a homeopath is clinically effective, cost effective and safe. Homeopathy benefits many illnesses and some are below:
- Allergies and upper respiratory tract infections
- Ankle sprain
- Childhood diarrhoea; chronic fatigue
- Ear infections
- Hay fever
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Rheumatic diseases