THE ROLE OF PHYSICAL THERAPIST IN GERIATRIC PHYSIOTHERAPY

Elderly people lose their body strength, mobility, flexibility, and movement due to aging. Geriatric physiotherapy treatment offers preventive and curative measures to protect and enhance the quality of life of senior people. Physiotherapy for old people offers a chance to improve mobility & balance, build strength, boost confidence in their physical condition, boosts joint range, and enhances strength & flexibility which leads to a better and enhanced lifestyle. 

PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR THE ELDERLY

As we age, our body goes through several deteriorating changes leading to a decrease in strength in the muscles which affects mobility and flexibility. We experience changes in social and emotional functioning, affecting our quality of life and general well-being. Providing physical therapy to senior people can often be very challenging as it involves patients with a mix of problems like neurological, musculoskeletal, and other problems often found in the same person. Geriatric physiotherapy helps aged people to improve their physical balance and strength, as well as to keep them active. Geriatric care is pertinent as it involves a pattern of preventive and intervening measures to provide the care and support essential to improve and manage functional independence and the quality of life. 

Geriatric physiotherapy for older people aims to help seniors maintain functional independence and overall well-being. With some exercises, older people can regain strength and movement and their lives can become easier with increased movement and flexibility. The following exercises can help elderly people improve strength and balance:

  1. Single limb stance

It’s best to start with a simple balance exercise for seniors. Here’s how you do this one: stand behind a steady, solid chair (not one with wheels), and hold on to the back of it. Lift your right foot and balance on your left foot. Hold that position for as long as you can, then switch feet. The goal should be to stand on one foot without holding onto the chair and hold that pose for up to a minute.

  1. Walking heel to toe 

You might read this and wonder, “How is walking an exercise to improve balance?” This exercise makes your legs stronger, which enables you to walk without falling. Put your right foot in front of your left foot so that the heel of your right foot touches the top of the toes of your left foot. Move your left foot in front of your right, putting your weight on your heel. Then, shift your weight to your toes. Repeat the step with your left foot. Walk this way for 20 steps.

  1. Standing on one leg

Balance disorders are among the leading contributors to injuries in elderly people. Thus, learning to stay balanced is important to avoid harm. This doesn’t necessarily involve performing difficult movements. To get started, you can hold onto a chair or other support fixture and balance on one leg. The aim here is to maintain the center of gravity of your ankle. After some time, switch to the other side. The basic physical therapy exercise for the elderly helps to provide a baseline idea of how strong your sense of balance currently is.  

  1. Agility ladder exercise

Ladder drills are popular with professional soccer and football athletes for increasing agility, speed, and quickness. The players run down a flat ladder (usually made with rope or tape), and step in and out of the ladder as quickly as they can. Agility ladder exercises for seniors are a modified version of the athletic drills. They can be categorized as advanced balance exercises for seniors.

HOW WE CAN HELP

The specialists at Physio Experts are trained to assist you in performing certain difficult tasks which will include exercises and stretching. We have facilities with world-class equipment that can help address all sorts of problems related to movement and restore the normal functioning of the body. If you’re in the Kanata area and are looking for geriatric physiotherapy for senior people, please do visit Physio Experts as we offer individualized physiotherapy services that help our clients get the best quality treatment. Physio Experts Physiotherapy Centre is a Kanata-based clinic providing one-on-one appointments with registered physiotherapists. Our team strives to deliver the highest quality of care. For more information, check out our reviews.

Everything you need to know about chronic low back pain

Chronic low back pain or CLBP is associated with neurochemical, structural, and functional cortical changes of several brain regions including the somatosensory cortex. Complex processes of peripheral and central sensitisation may have an impact on the development of acute to chronic pain. To put it simply, CLBP is an unexplained pain in the lower back that persists for more than 12 weeks.

Who is at a higher risk of developing CLBP?

This condition is found more in women (70.3 per 1000 population) than men (57.4 per 1000 population) and elderly who are at a higher risk of experiencing chronic back pain. Factors like old age, previous back pain problems, accidents that have caused the condition to occur and psychosocial disorders were factors that affect the recovery.

What are the symptoms?

  • Pain and discomfort in the gluteal (buttock) region. One can experience pain in the centre, on either of the sides or both sides of the lower back which may or may not cause pain in the buttocks, hamstrings, or calf.
  • A sharp radicular pain travelling down the leg due to nerve root irritation).
  • Palpation of the lumbar spine may result in tenderness with frequent muscle spasms.
  • Pain may be aggravated by bending, arching back, rotating or combined lower back movements.

How can physiotherapy help?

Physiotherapy assesses the severity of the problem and designs a personalised treatment plan that includes a specific exercise regime that will aid in reducing the pain and improve motor function.

PhysioExperts designs an Individual exercise program, after a careful physical examination and understanding the patient’s clinical history. We deliver a customised exercise program specifically designed to cure the patient’s chronic lower back pain. We only provide supervised exercise programs that include home exercises, supervised training with regular therapist follow-ups.

We encourage the patient to increase the intensity of the exercise based on the severity of the patient’s condition. Stretching and muscle-strengthening exercises were the best types of exercises for improving pain and function.

How long does it take to recover?

In normal cases, patients with back pain recover in 6 weeks and worst cases, it may go up to 12 weeks. It is very important to understand that the recovery phase after the 12th week is slow and uncertain.

In conclusion, chronic low back pain is a slower recovery process. However, with the proper care and following the exercise program diligently can help you to get back to an active life faster. PhysioExperts always strives to move you to better health.

5 common reasons why your muscles are sore?

Muscle soreness can occur after overexertion or injury during physical activities. When muscles are overworked than their original capacity it causes the microscopic damage to the muscles fibres which results in muscle soreness or stiffness.

There can be several why you are experiencing muscle pains and aches; even for those who live a sedentary lifestyle.

As the top physiotherapy clinic in Ottawa we are listing down the possible reasons why people feel muscle soreness. Let’s have a look.

Strenuous exercise

Starting afresh or coming back to your workout routine can be difficult as your muscles are not yet adapted to the increased demands that such activities require. As your body is trying to adapt to your fitness regiment, you may experience minor muscle pains or stiffness for the first few days of your workout, and that’s common. This condition is often referred to as delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS. A muscle pain that begins within 8 hours post exercise and prolongs for 48 hours post exercise. A mild muscle soreness is a natural outcome of almost any kind of physical activity.

Too much soreness post exercise can hamper your movement and can be counterproductive to the goal of improving your core strength and fitness.

Injury

Muscle soreness can also be due to sports injuries and accidents that can cause bruising, and strain. Physiotherapy is an effective way to help heal muscle strain and reduce pain.

The treatment for these injuries are classified based on the severity of the injury.

In case of a first degree muscle strain, the patient may suffer mild injury and we advise rest and no activities in such cases. While in the second degree strain the patient may feel some bruising, muscle stiffness and weakness. In such a scenario, we assess the severity of the condition and devise a treatment plan for faster recovery. Lastly, the third degree muscle strain is a complete tear which can be painful and significant bruising is visible. The patient may feel loss of strength and mobility in the affected limb. Medical assessment is a must to determine if surgery or immobilization is required during the initial healing phase and when ready, our  physiotherapy will be introduced to guide faster recovery.

Stress

In stressful situations, your body produces stress hormones that may increase muscle tension and pain sensitivity. Due to which you may experience random migration of pain in various muscles groups throughout your body. It can be difficult to identify how it all started. But lack of sleep or excessive emotions and poor breathing functions can contribute to muscle stiffness.

We’re here to help you identify the cause of stress, create a positive change to help you feel better.

Medical conditions

Many medical conditions and syndromes can also contribute to muscle pain. Common painful conditions can include: arthritis, polymyalgia rheumatica, fibromyalgia, disorders of the endocrine system and diabetes also present with muscular pain.

Proper diagnosis is very important to implementing a successful treatment program.

Woman muscle pain during running training

Vitamin & mineral deficiencies

Studies have also shown that muscle soreness is often a symptom of vitamin deficiencies in our body. Vitamin D is the most common deficiency that is causing muscle soreness. Vitamin D is important for good bone health. Insufficient vitamin D can affect your body’s capacity to absorb calcium from our diet. 

In such a case, the body draws the calcium from your bones, which eventually leads to osteopenia or weaker bones. If not treated on time, this condition progresses to osteoporosis.  Although osteoporosis is caused only in the presence of a fracture but in case of poor bone health, muscles tend to become weak and sore.

If you too are experiencing muscle soreness due to the above mentioned reasons, visit us or book a free consultation call with our registered PTs today. ‍

Our role as a physiotherapist in COVID-19

As COVID-19 has been a dreaded nightmare for all of us, we all should exercise caution at all times. We understand that as a physiotherapist, we are in direct contact with our patients. Therefore, to avoid the spread, as a precaution we have kept our clinic closed for now.

As physiotherapists, we are also the first contact practitioners, which means that we are in a position to take responsibility for the early identification of the novel coronavirus. It is, therefore, our responsibility to be familiar with COVID-19 symptoms and prevent its transmission. As a part of the physiotherapy community, we are sharing some of the key considerations that we ought to follow with due diligence:

Staying updated with the current scenario. We are constantly following WHO’s and Ottawa Public Health’s evolving resources and keeping ourselves abreast with the current statistics and news.

Being responsible is our oath. We are keeping an objective view of the current crisis. Our staff and our patients may look upon us as a leader to provide the right information to help them make decisions and also provide reassurance that we can take care of them at this time of need.

Exercising caution at all times. We’re following the infection prevention and control (IPC) guidelines and are practising social distancing and promoting everyone to stay home. We’ve rescheduled our appointments and have opened digital service via Telehealth Care so our patients can still connect with us in case of emergencies.

We are happy that the federal government is including the essential role and contributions of physiotherapists to fight Canada’s COVID-19, and making new investments to mitigate the impact of the virus on Canadians. Together we will overcome COVID-19 with compassion, command and conviction.

PhysioExperts is committed by using telehealth to deliver quality care to our patients. Through this medium, we promote ourselves to help you stay connected with us anytime, anywhere.

During your telehealth virtual appointment, we will prescribe exercises, track your progress and advise precautions. We also help you use whatever resources are available at your home to optimize your care.

What you get?

  • Virtual appointments are secure and private just like in clinic sessions
  • Get a 30 min – 60 min session with an experienced Physical Therapist 
  • Easy to connect video sessions on your phone, tablet or laptop

We’re extending our expert care with Telehealth. We are available from Monday – Friday, 9 am – 8 pm. Book online: https://experts.janeapp.com or book via email: info@physioexperts.caor book via call: 613.672.6000

COVID-19: Our responsibility as physiotherapists

The novel coronavirus is the biggest disruption we have ever experienced in the world. 

People are getting anxious and are unaware and lack clarity on this changing situation. As a responsible physiotherapy clinic in Ottawa, PhysioExperts team would like to share important information with everyone. Please take time to read and share with your colleagues, friends and family.

Since March 2020, the province of Ontario has witnessed over 19,000 positive cases with an average number of 400 cases coming daily. This is a serious problem and we would like to promote social distancing as the first step to stop this pandemic. The objective is to reduce the spread and delay its transmission to the peak and reduce the number of cases over time to relieve the pressure on the healthcare system.

According to the WHO report the incubation of the virus is somewhere between 1 and 14 days with symptoms most likely emerging after the 5th day. Therefore, healthcare professionals are promoting 14 days of self-isolation. So, it’s important to stay protected at all times. It’s very important that you follow proper hand hygiene, follow social distancing and make use of your Personal Protective Equipment(PPE)  applicable to prevent the spread of infection. 

Hand hygiene is equally important to reduce the infection from spreading. Wash your hands with soap for a minimum of 20 seconds. The reason is, the virus can stay in your hands for more than 30 minutes, which is enough to make your sick. In case of emergencies, always exercise caution and wear surgical hand gloves and a face mask. Use an alcohol-based sanitizer if you don’t have immediate access to soap and water. 

We only promote the right information and always try to stop the spread of the virus as well fake news. Stay home and stay safe.