Conventional musculoskeletal physiotherapy
The core techniques associated with physiotherapy are:
- mobilising techniques to loosen stiff and / or painful joints.
Passive mobilisations may be used so that the therapist uses techniques to help loosen a joint, or active techniques may be required where the client does certain movements to assist in the release of a stiff joint. Often both techniques are combined.
- management of inflammation and swelling
The cause of inflammation or swelling can be very varied. Treatment may differ depending on whether the swelling is acute or chronic. Techniques used may include, but not be limited to the use of compression methods, graded exercise to assist in improved blood and lymphatic flow or to strengthen weak muscles and ultrasound for local areas..
- rehabilitation via exercise and / or stretching and movement re-education. Exercise may include a graded strengthening programme for specific areas including core stability for back pain. Balance and proprioception exercises may be necessary after a joint injury, such as a sprained ankle, or to help prevent falls. Stretching exercises are often required after a sports injury or surgery. Gait re-education may be necessary after an injury or operation on the leg to improve walking ability and re-learning how to move a limb may be necessary after any surgery or injury.
- pain relieving modalities
All of the above can provide pain relief. Electrotherapy in the form of ultrasound can be useful for local areas of pain, if appropriate. Scars can also be a source of pain and may need treatment (see below). Myofascial release can be useful in relieving both chronic and acute pain.
Advice and education is always given. All treatments are planned specifically for the individual.
Not every physotherapist uses exactly the same techniques as it depends on what further training they have done post graduation. So even if you have had physiotherapy before without much success I may be able to offer other treatment options not always offered by every physiotherapist.
Myofascial Release (MFR)
Myofascial release (MFR) is a manual technique which involves applying gentle sustained pressure to the fascial connective tissue. Please see the 'Myofascial Release' page for more information. I often suggest MFR for those with pain in multiple sites. It is very useful in treating chronic pain conditions.
Muscle Energy Technique (MET)
MET is a manual technique, generally using gentle active contraction of a muscle with a joint placed in a specific position, in order to improve the movement at that joint. I have found it particularly effective in treating back, neck, sacro-iliac (S.I) joint and rib pain. Specific tests are done to check whether the symptoms are stemming from the joint and whether this technique is appropriate.
Scar management is the treatment of scar tissue. Scar tissue is necessary to heal a wound or injury but if there is excess scar tissue or if it heals in a shortened positiion it can become problematical. I may be able to assist in the management of post surgery or small wound scars. Treatment is most effective while the scar is going through it's initial formation process however old scars can still benefit from treatment. Different modalities such as myofascial release, ultrasound, stretching or possibly silicone gel sheets may be used in scar management.