Arthritis is an inflammatory condition affecting the joints, which can result in pain and stiffness. If not managed properly, it can severely limit a person’s mobility and prevent them from having a happy and active lifestyle.
One of the ways to manage arthritis pain is to engage in physical therapy. It not only helps with pain, some of the techniques used can be very helpful in improving joint function. It is no surprise that physical therapy is part of most treatment plans for arthritis.
In this article, we will explore some of the physical therapy techniques used in managing pain and improving joint function, and where you can receive top-notch treatment for arthritis in Rochester Hills, Michigan.
Why See a Physical Therapist for Arthritis Pain?
If your orthopedic doctor thinks physical therapy can help improve your arthritis symptoms, they will refer you to a licensed physical therapist (PT). A PT can help you with the following:
1. Pain Relief
Physical therapists can use different techniques to help relieve arthritis-related pain. They may use modalities like heat or cold therapy, ultrasound, or electrical stimulation, all of which have been shown to provide relief for patients.
2. Customized Exercise Programs
A physical therapist can develop a personalized exercise program for your specific issue. For example, for back pain from arthritis, a patient’s program may include:
- Core strengthening exercises, such as ab exercises, can strengthen the core muscles and provide a stronger support for the back, easing stress and strain on the arthritic joints.
- Stretching exercises, such as hamstring stretches, are great for improving flexibility and relieving muscle tension in the back.
- Range of motion exercises, such as neck stretches and shoulder rolls, can help improve the mobility and flexibility of the spine.
3. Joint Mobility Enhancement
A physical therapy specialist utilizes manual therapy techniques, such as joint mobilization or tissue manipulation, to improve joint mobility and increase range of motion. These methods can also help alleviate back pain and stiffness and enhance joint function. With time, patients experience a greater ability to move the affected areas freely and without discomfort.
4. Education and Self-Management
Physical therapists can educate patients on better arthritis management. For example, poor posture can worsen arthritis symptoms. They may offer guidance on activity modification and proper body mechanics, such as correct lifting techniques to prevent unnecessary back injuries that can worsen back pain.
A physical therapist can also recommend the use of assistive devices to reduce joint stress and instruct you on how to use them in your daily activities.
Some of these assistive devices include:
- Orthopedic pillows
- Ergonomic chairs
- Braces and supports
- Posture correctors
- Walkers and canes
The goals of assistive devices are to help you move freely and ease the strain on your joints, minimizing wear and tear, as well as pain.
Physical Therapy Services in Rochester Hills, MI
Dr. Bradley Ahlgren of Ahlgren Spine is a highly experienced orthopedic spine surgeon helping arthritis patients achieve lasting relief from their orthopedic conditions. Dr. Ahlgren will evaluate your condition and refer you to a qualified physical therapist who will work with you one-on-one, if it is the most appropriate approach for you.
Being an expert in arthritis treatment, Dr. Ahlgren can also recommend other pain-relieving techniques to maximize your healing and relief. For your convenience, there is a physical therapy clinic located in the same building. Depending on your preference, we can also refer you to a physical therapist that is closer to your home or office.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ahlgren, call our office today at (248) 215-8080, text or call at (248) 840-2053, or use our online form to schedule your visit. Our friendly staff at Ahlgren Spine looks forward to serving you.