Just as there is with any type of medicine, there are also different types of physiotherapy. Physiotherapists practice in many different areas and physiotherapy is used to treat a variety of conditions, illnesses and diseases as well as in rehabilitation of patients who have suffered a broken bone, back or neck injury or even a stroke or heart attack.
One of the most common types of physiotherapy involves those who work with back and neck injury patients. These therapists gently manipulate the spine to either lessen stiffening from a neck injury, ease muscle tightness in the neck or back, or even manipulate a herniated disc back into place. These physiotherapists are very familiar with the spinal column and how it affects our health. Many people seek treatment from such physiotherapists whenever they have a back or neck injury, both of which are very common. Others seek treatment from such physiotherapists to alleviate symptoms from migraine headaches, which many believe is the result of a misaligned spinal column.
Other different types of physiotherapy include therapists who work with people who are immobilized in a hospital. Although they may not be able to move, for many different reasons, it is imperative that blood circulation continues in their extremities. Although there are special “boots” that patients can wear to continue blood circulation in their legs, physiotherapists often work with such patients, including those in a coma, to insure that movement continues in the extremities and atrophy does not occur.
Still yet other types of physiotherapy involve working with injured people who are trying to walk again after a spinal injury or stroke. This takes much time and can be painful for the patient, but he reward can be the difference of spending the rest of their lives in a wheelchair or being able to use their legs again. In cases such as this, a physiotherapist is invaluable and can make a great impact on the patient’s life. This is one reason why, unlike doctors, physiotherapists make a concerted effort to befriend their patient and establish a bond.
Other types of physiotherapy concentrate on helping those with illnesses such as Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Cystic Fibrosis, Muscular Dystrophy and other disabling and life threatening conditions. Others treat children and are called pediatric physiotherapists. They mainly concentrate on children with disease present at birth or those with broken bones.
There are many different types of physiotherapy and all have a great benefit to the medical community. Over the past few decades, more people have opted to go into this profession that offers patients recovering from illness, accident, surgery or who have a disease or condition that requires movement, a chance to live a longer, more productive and pain-free life. Physiotherapists practice in hospitals, rehab facilities and even in private offices. Some physiotherapists specialize in treating homebound patients, such as the elderly, and make home visits periodically to maintain movement for those who are bedridden or unable to walk.
Physiotherapy is a growing science and well respected in the medical community. There are many different types of physiotherapy and newer developments within this scientific field are emerging all of the time.