What is physiotherapy?
Physiotherapy is a type of therapy that uses movements to help heal injuries and alleviate chronic health conditions. Physiotherapists use manual therapy, which is based on a high standard of research, to move you in order to heal the injury or condition. They can also be helpful for people with chronic health issues.
Physiotherapy helps you restore, maintain and maximize your body strength, function, and movement. Physiotherapists treat your muscles, bones and joints through carefully selected motions and stretches. They have in-depth knowledge of how the body works and specialized skills to assess, diagnose, and treat symptoms of illness, injury and disability.
Physiotherapy includes rehabilitation, prevention of injury & disability, managing acute & chronic conditions, and the improvement & maintenance of optimal physical performance. Physiotherapists also promote health and fitness, and educate patients on preventing the re-occurrence of an injury.
What does Physiotherapy treat?
Physiotherapy focuses on both prevention and rehabilitation. Treatment can be for problems caused by injury, illness, or disability.
Here are some examples of conditions that are commonly treated by physiotherapy:
- Cardiorespiratory- providing support, prevention and rehabilitation for people suffering from diseases and injuries that affect the heart and lungs (e.g. Asthma).
- Cancer, palliative care and lymphedema- treating, managing and preventing the fatigue, pain, swelling, and stiffness of the muscles and joints.
- Neck and back pain often caused by problems in the skeleton or muscles (AKA Musculoskeletal).
- Neurological damage- for patients who have experienced a loss of mobility due to brain or spinal cord trauma, or patients who suffer from neurological diseases such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis. Physiotherapy can help restore movement and mobility, helping to improve quality of life.
- Orthopedic- problems and pains in the joints, muscles, bones, and ligaments, such as arthritis or the side effects of amputations.
- Whiplash or motor vehicle accidents- overseeing rehabilitation from motor vehicle accidents.
- Sports Injuries and post surgical rehabilitation- rehabilitating injuries and aiding the proper recovery from surgery.
- Chronic pain- managing or preventing pain and its impact on function in patients.
- Pelvic problems such as bladder or bowel issues related to childbirth.
Physiotherapy has many applications, please contact us to learn more about how our physiotherapists can help.
What to expect at your appointment
Every physiotherapy appointment is all about you and your particular needs. For an initial assessment, the physiotherapist will look at your medical history, assess and diagnose your condition, make a treatment plan that sets goals for you and prescribe a course of exercises and any assistive devices needed. A physiotherapy session usually involves hands-on treatment, including manual therapy to stretch stiff joints and therapeutic massage to loosen tight muscles. There may also be machines involved with your treatment, such as electrical machines that can help address pain or help to stimulate weak muscles. An individualized home exercise program will also be prescribed that may involve a combination of stretching and strengthening exercises.
These techniques are used depending on the nature of the injury, or the problem being treated by the physiotherapist. Here are some common physical therapy techniques:
- Manual manipulation- moving joints and soft tissue helps to improve circulation, drain fluid from the body, and relax overly tight muscles.
- Electrical nerve stimulation- small electrical currents delivered to affected areas helps to suppress and block pain signals to the brain.
- Acupuncture- needles stimulate the nervous system and work to dull pain, release muscles, boost the immune system and regulate various body functions.
- Demonstration- teaching proper movement patterns allows patients to help heal themselves.
- Functional testing- testing a patient to assess his/her physical abilities.
- Device provision- prescription, fabrication and application of assistive, adaptive, supportive and protective devices and equipment.
A physiotherapists goal is to get you moving. That means getting you to a place where you can be at your best functional capacity, maintaining that and then helping you to prevent future injuries. Physiotherapy is most effective when you collaborate with your physiotherapist.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
What is the difference between a physiotherapist and a physical therapist?
Physical therapy and physiotherapy are the same profession. There is little difference between the two terms, so they can be used interchangeably. In Canada, the profession is most commonly known as physiotherapy. The same applies to the terms “physiotherapist” and “physical therapist”
How much is a physiotherapy session?
Our initial assessment starts at $110. Follow up treatments vary based on time, a 45 minute session is $85. For a full breakdown of pricing and the latest prices, please check our fees page.
How many physiotherapy sessions will I need?
Your physiotherapy treatment is individualized to meet your needs, so it’s not possible to provide a specific number of sessions necessary for results. However, on average, people require around 5 sessions in order to achieve their desired outcome.
Do I need a referral to see a physiotherapist?
In Ontario, Physiotherapy is considered primary health care, so a doctor referral is not needed. However, if you have physiotherapy treatment coverage through an extended health benefit plan, the insurance company may require a doctor’s referral.
If you have any more questions about physiotherapy and how it can help you, please reach out to us. Additionally, the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario has a great patient resource centre.
Award winning clinic in East Gwillimbury
We’ve won numerous awards for our services, and we’re passionate about helping you recover, manage pain, or improve physical performance through Physiotherapy. Our clinic is located in East Gwillimbury, and proudly serves residents of Newmarket, York region, and beyond. If you have any questions about Physiotherapy, or if you’d like to make an appointment, please contact us at (905)251-0162 today.
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