Geriatric Physiotherapy

What is Geriatric Physiotherapy

Often known as Geriatric rehabilitation, Geriatric Physiotherapy is a brand of physiotherapy that helps in managing physical issues in elderly people. With growing age, various pain-related problems start to arise. That’s when you need the help of a Geriatric Physiotherapist to work for the elderly community. Geriatric physiotherapy will mainly focus on the people in the aging process. Geriatric Physiotherapy will help the aged people or the elderly to improve their present physical strength and balance. They will help the older community to build confidence and also keep them active for a longer period of time.

With growing age, your body undergoes various degenerative issues, which will lead to loss of strength in the muscle tone. It will restrict flexibility and mobility. You will experience some changes in emotional and social functioning with an increase in your age, which in turn, will affect the quality of life and well-being. Geriatric care is vital as it involves loads of intervening and preventive measures to offer final care and support, essential for improving and managing quality of life and functional independence.

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Types of Geriatric Physiotherapies

The present nature of Geriatric Physiotherapy is to assess and treat, focusing on the physical nature of the person’s condition. For older adults, physical tasks are the major starting point for the treatment. Interventions must include assessment of a person’s abilities and difficulties in performing tasks like transfer on or off the chair or bed, general mobility, and more.

Assessing the older adult will help the Geriatric Physiotherapist to identify the underlying impairment impacting the task. There are few techniques that expert uses, which will differ from the ones, taught for all age groups. It can be a manual technique as used in a clinic setting or functional intervention in the adult’s home.

Proper care needs to be taken with special treatment techniques and more time needs to be given for learning and practicing the exercises. The treatments will include rest, compression, ice, and elevation. However, the therapist might also need to assess the skin’s condition to allow for safer use of ice or effects of the compression.

When to See Physiotherapist

There are so many conditions, well treated by geriatric physiotherapy assessment. If you are facing any of the problems mentioned below, it is time to visit a physiotherapist right away.

  • Joint pain:

Joints will connect bones within your body. It will bear weight and support you during movements. Primarily, joint pain is caused by inflammation of the lining of the joint, any injuries, arthritis, hemarthrosis, and gout. If left untreated for long, it can restrict mobility and lead to instability to perform daily work.

  • General weakness:

After a certain age, everyone faces general weakness. One of the major attributes is the degenerative changes, which will come with age resulting in stiff joints, poor muscle tone, and more. It gets worsen if there are other chronic conditions like endocrine problems, neurological issues, and musculoskeletal issues.

  • Postural instability:

It is one condition where the aged person fails to maintain an upright position. It is the imbalance and loss of the righting reflexes. Geriatric Physiotherapy like balance exercises will improve postural instability and help patients to get back to their normal state.

  • Balance impairment:

In the elderly, balance impairment means loss of normal functions of bones and muscles. It is the common result of arthritis and orthostatic hypotension. Some of the other factors behind this problem are numbness in the legs and feet, blood circulation issues, eye problems, and taking multiple medications. Geriatric Physiotherapy like balance exercises will improve bone and muscle functions.

Risks of lack of physical activity in elderly people

Lack of physical activity in elderly people will lead to some bed-ridden results, which can degrade the condition of bones and muscles even more. Without regular exercise, people over the age group of 50 will experience a range of health issues. Some of those are:

  • Less Physical endurance
  • Reduction in the muscle mass
  • Reduction in strength
  • Reduced joint flexibility and mobility
  • Reduced coordination and balance

How to prevent pain in elderly people

Safe pain treatment like geriatric rehabilitation physiotherapy is always available for older adults. Most adults will feel pain as a natural part of their aging and won’t tell anyone about their problems. But, it is vital to visit a doctor for immediate pain relief.

Even though there are end numbers of pain relievers that are safe for older people, but doctors will take special precautions while prescribing medications. However, going for stretching and basic general exercises will keep pain at bay, and older adults won’t even have to take pain killers as a remedy. So, daily exercises, eating good food, and staying hydrated are some ways to prevent pain.

Geriatric Physiotherapy Treatments

Before you proceed further to give a neurological physiotherapist a call for help, it is important to learn about the treatment approaches available. These are mostly incorporated with a selection of the following treatments, as mentioned below:

  • Geriatric physical therapy:

This therapy places special emphasis on the needs of aging adults and will help to treat conditions like cancer, osteoporosis, arthritis, and joint replacement, and balance disorders. It comes with specialized programs.

  • Orthopedic physical therapy:

Here, the therapist helps in treating injuries of the musculoskeletal system and recovers from orthopedic surgeries.

  • Cardiopulmonary physical therapy:

This therapy is great for increasing endurance and functional independence when somebody suffers from cardiovascular or pulmonary conditions like heart attack and more.

  • Neurological physical therapy:

Here, the focus remains on the body and brain. It helps to treat patients suffering from neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease, ALS, and more.

Related Conditions

Apart from relieving older adults from pain, Geriatric Physiotherapies can help to treat other neurological issues, orthopedic conditions, and muscle pains among individuals.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to choose the best Geriatric Physiotherapist?
Checking out the working experience, credentials, and authentication certificates will help you come up with the best Geriatric Physiotherapist for help.
How much time does it take to complete Geriatric Physiotherapies?
It depends on the type of Geriatric Physiotherapy performed and the condition of the patient.

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