The goal of any therapy or treatment for osteoarthritis is to alleviate pain and control symptoms as much as possible. To do that, there are different approaches and ideas as to what works best. Doctors and therapists are always watching the progress of their patients to find out if they need to go in a different direction with their treatment recommendations.
OsteoArthritis Pain Recovery
One very important step towards managing osteoarthritis symptoms is physical therapy. Those with arthritis experience pain and discomfort from stiff joints. When they feel pain in their joints, they are less likely to want to use those joints in an attempt to avoid more pain. However, by not moving joints with arthritis, the stiffness will only get worse. This is why doctors will often implement a physical therapy schedule when treating patients with arthritis.
Working with a physical therapist can help those with osteoarthritis learn how to exercise and loosen up joints without doing any further damage to those joints. The goal of the physical therapist is to get their patient back to normal, everyday activities as effectively as possible. They will focus on range of motion in joints and building strength in muscles surrounding the joint.
In some cases, when a patient’s osteoarthritis has escalated to a more serious situation, they might require the use of a cane or walker to get around. This can be stressful at first if they are not used to using a walking device. Physical therapy can be the perfect solution to helping patients become more comfortable walking with a cane, crutch or walker.
Physical therapy not only focuses on exercise and movement, but it also helps patients learn how to properly rest their joints. If a patient is experiencing inflammation and pain in multiple joints, they might benefit from bed rest to help avoid fatigue. For those who are only experiencing pain in a specific area or joint, a physical therapist will teach them how to rest the individual joint.
Additionally, a physical therapist will help the patient understand when it is appropriate to use ice or heat to help relieve joint pain. Heat can relax muscle spasms that may occur around inflamed joints. In some cases, a physical therapist may treat a stiff joint with heat before exercising to help with movement.
When you work with the team at Arrowhead Health Centers, we incorporate many different techniques and methods to treat your osteoarthritis joint pain. We often bring in a physical therapist as part of your customized Recovery Game Plan to help increase your mobility and range of motion.
To learn more about the treatments we use or to set up a free consultation, give us a call at 623-334-4000, option 9.