Physical Therapy And Pediatric Physical Therapy – An Overview


It is also known as physiotherapy. People consider it a part of primary healthcare in several parts of the world and prescribe it in conjunction with other medical treatments. If you have suffered an injury recently which has restricted you from performing daily tasks and activities, your doctor will recommend this form of intervention. 

Physiotherapy restores health and excellent functionality in the body by alleviating pain and discomfort. In turn, people can resume their daily tasks. The physical therapist thoroughly evaluates the patient and questions him about his history, lifestyle, and injury. He uses this information to draft a suitable therapy routine to improve health and enhance recovery from injury. He will also educate the patient and advise him on lifestyle changes to maintain good health and prevent injuries in the future. Physiotherapy often boosts the healing process of the body post-injury than it would without it.

Is physical therapy better than surgery?

After receiving an injury, physical therapy provides a helpful and non-invasive way to recovery. Comparing the two, physical therapy is a much better treatment option because it enables easy and smooth recovery for the patient. Surgery requires more money than physical therapy and, it is associated with a lot of risks and has considerable downtime for the patient. Although physical therapy is safe and often very successful, it is a time-consuming treatment option. And to see the best results, the patients must be patient and consistent with their exercise regimen. 

Mode of working

Physical therapy takes time. At the first session, the therapist analyzes the patient and assesses his needs. He inquires about the patient’s symptoms, pain, medical history, movement, and sleeping cycle to understand the patient’s problems. The objective of physical therapy is to figure out what conditions you have and why you are suffering from those conditions. And to realize how this creates a limitation in your daily life. Based on this information and his medical expertise, the physical therapist addresses each problem to find a solution. To reach a diagnosis, he also performs several tests to understand the patient’s condition. The therapist assesses the patient’s ability to move, bend, walk and climb stairs. He also checks the patient’s gripping strength to identify an injury to the upper limb and gauges posture and balance.

Is physical therapy beneficial?

It amplifies performance by eliminating or decreasing pain in muscles and joints. People also prevent themselves from reexperiencing muscle pain by regularly performing therapeutic exercises, hot/cold compresses, and taping. Stretching is also an integral part of physical therapy which, permits the patient to move in a wide range by reducing tension in muscles and helping to lubricate the joints. The cardiovascular benefits of physical therapy are also many. It helps build stamina and endurance when patients perform cardio as a part of therapy because cardio improves breathing patterns. If needed, a physical therapist can also fit a patient with assistive devices like a cane or crutches. As a part of physical therapy, doctors can also install a custom-made upper extremity orthosis to protect the injury and facilitate healing while making it easier for the patient to perform everyday tasks.

 1) Benefits of physiotherapy for athletes

It is of supreme importance for athletes. During physical therapy, the athlete can become aware of the weak areas of his body that are most prone to getting hurt and can use this knowledge to learn how to move in a way that prevents injury. Physical therapy provides a different way to manage pain which decreases the players’ dependence on potent painkillers which, are harmful to health. Some physiotherapy is vital after participating in violent and physically challenging sports like rugby or football, in which there is intense physical impact. If the athletes perform therapeutic exercises afterwards, it reduces the chances of developing muscle tension and pain. 

2) Women’s health

Physical therapy is crucial for maintaining good health in women. It is particularly significant during pregnancy when lower back pain is persistent. Physiotherapy improves body posture and relieves tense muscles thereby, decreasing pain. It also helps strengthen muscles of the pelvis which, improves bladder control and helps overcome uterine incontinence.

What is Pediatric Physical Therapy?

Pediatric physical therapy solely focuses on children involving working with them and their families. The purpose of this is to help children reach their maximum potential, so they perform best and independently at home, school, and the community. Pediatric physical therapists specialize in motor development and body functionality in children. They use this knowledge while evaluating and examining each child to prepare a most suited therapy routine for each child’s problems.

How does it work?

It starts with the pediatric physical therapist involving the family in preparing and following the therapy program for each child. This is achieved by first questioning the family to identify the child’s needs and recognizing other areas where the child is lacking. He may require help with muscle and joint function, mobility, and the development of sensory faculties. He may be struggling with maintaining good posture, a sense of balance, and good cardiopulmonary status. The pediatric physical therapist devises developmental activities which are engaging and fun to deal with these issues while making the child feel at ease. He also seeks help from other health care professionals to provide assistive devices like orthotics, wheelchair seats, and prosthetics to a child if required. Pediatric physical therapists usually treat children falling between the age of a newborn and eighteen years. Their expertise covers bone/muscle problems, sports injuries, gene-related disorders, and brain/spinal problems in children, all of which can limit their daily functioning. 

A pediatric physical therapist makes it more convenient for children to execute their daily tasks by helping them learn how to make their bodies stronger and use them in a way that is best for their lifestyle. Children are encouraged to play with props that build their muscles. To work on balance and coordination, the children participate in activities that require walking and hopping. A pediatric physical therapist also assigns daily workouts that the children can regularly do at home to ensure steady progress.  

Down Syndrome

Children with Down syndrome should have pediatric physical therapy daily because it decreases their dependence on others by enabling them to perform basic day-to-day activities. Such children can reach their maximum potential if they have help from a pediatric physical therapist during their native years. Regular physiotherapy also prevents these children from succumbing to heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and some tumours associated with inactivity in this condition. It also develops their communication skills, making it easier for them to converse with other people. This helps improve their overall social outlook, making it easier for them to mix with other people and prevent depression. 

Final Thoughts

A physical therapist is a highly trained and board-certified doctor who is an expert in evaluating peoples’ health, injuries, and any limitations to compose an effective plan to monitor the therapy. He usually works with a doctor and other healthcare professionals to propose treatments that are best for their patients. They perform massages, hot and cold compressions, hands-on treatment, and exercises to increase movement as a part of therapy. 

Thank you for reading!