As a practising physiotherapist, I’ve had all manner of physiotherapy-related questions from clients over the years. These have ranged from the “Aren’t I too old?” right through to the perfectly reasonable “Won’t doing that hurt me even more?”. As well as understandable concerns, a lot of the questions stem from misconceptions, largely perpetuated by misinformation on the internet.
Most people tend to think of physiotherapy as something that is intrinsically linked with physical injuries, sustained during accidents or whilst undertaking sporting activity, but that’s only half the story (probably less than half, in fact). So here are some little-known facts and insights into the profession and some of the issues it can help alleviate.
1. Treating Vertigo
Classified as a sensation of whirling and a loss of balance usually associated with great heights, many people suffer his phenomenon with their feet firmly on the ground. In these people, the condition is usually caused by an infection of the vestibular system which is linked to balance. However, using physiotherapy can reduce the symptoms by reconditioning the body parts responsible for balance. By utilising exercise that improve balance when walking, head and eye movements to counteract dizziness, many sufferers report improvement after just one session.
2. Improving Mental Wellbeing
Not just designed to improve flexibility, range of motion and overall strength, physiotherapy treatments also carry huge benefits for mental health. With the wide variety of massages practised these days, such as those offered at our Newcastle physiotherapy clinic, it’s possible to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system to drastically reduce symptoms of stress and high blood pressure, resulting in the release of feel good endorphins.
3. Helping Tackle Obesity
As the leading cause of premature death worldwide, obesity is a wide-spread epidemic. Although many assume that governments and doctors are the only professions that can change this, physiotherapists also have a valuable role to play. This is because obesity leads to restricted movements and ultimately discourages an individual from engaging in physical activity. Using a medley of treatments such as bio-mechanics, rehabilitation exercises and nutritional advice, physiotherapists can help people overcome their barriers and lead a healthier lifestyle.
I hope this has gone some way in demonstrating the breadth and wide variety of benefits that physiotherapy bring, and that you’ll consider looking into physio as a potential solution to more than just sport injuries in the future.