A physical therapist, or physiotherapist, uses both manual therapy as well as mechanical or electrical therapy to aid a patient’s recovery process and prevention. They use a number of physiotherapy equipment to reduce and relieve pain, repair the joint and muscle, and to make the patient more comfortable during his or her visit.
A physiotherapy chair, bed, couch, or table is among the various type of physiotherapy equipment. This is generally a flat cushioned bench with cushioned head support and two to seven adjustable sections. The sections adjust to lay the patient completely flat on the back, or stomach, or can be folded into different degrees to become a chair or exercise table. The physiotherapist uses this to keep the patient comfortable while examining and diagnosing. It is also used while the patient performs specific exercises, or for massage therapy.
For exercise a physical therapist might bring in hand and leg weights, elastic bands, and exercise balls as part of their physiotherapy equipment. A balance ball chair is a large air filled ball securely attached to a small stool set on rollers with back support. The client may use this type of equipment for exercises that require support for less strain on the spine and back.
To relieve pain, acute and chronic, physiotherapy equipment such as a TENS, or Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation, system may be used. A TENS unit provides the patient with temporary pain relief without the added use of drugs, narcotics, or painful shots. The attachments are set on the skin over the affected area where the machine sends tiny electrical currents, or pulses to the nerves. The pulses scramble and block pain signals before they reach the brain and are said to raise the level of endorphins produced by the brain. Portable versions come as battery operated handheld devices.
Often included in a physical therapist’s physiotherapy equipment arsenal are items used in electrotherapy and ultrasound. Ultrasound devices generally consist of a round handheld wand, or probe. This probe is placed on the patient’s skin with the use of ultrasound gel to transmit ultrasonic waves through the skin. The vibration of the tissues produce heat that helps reduce pain while relaxing and repairing muscle tissue. Ultrasound can also produce a pulse for tissue relaxation when heat is not desired. Ultrasound can also be used to give medications that are needed below the skin. Usually used for patients unable to take needle injections. Often ultrasound wands come attached to a large electronic device connected to a cart.
Each physical therapist has her or his own method of treatment. These examples are just some of a long list of physiotherapy equipment used to treat patients.
The term physiotherapy associates often refers to a group of health professionals and therapists dedicated to helping patients heal from injuries, illnesses and disorders that require outpatient care. Such professional physical and occupational therapists work in a small setting, such as a clinic, generally outside of a hospital, but not always. Physiotherapy associates clinics are branched throughout the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and throughout the world.
As a group they offer a variety of health services depending on the individual needs of their patients. Besides clinics, sports physiotherapy associates may hold jobs in schools, or athletic clubs. Their goal is to help educate, train, and help patients recover from injury or disease.
Physiotherapy associates play an important role in body recovery. Many offer services that cover pediatrics with evaluations for children under the age of 21. The child begins an appropriate treatment once the therapist and parent agree the child will benefit from physical therapy.
Many physiotherapy associates offer therapy for assisted living. Generally, the patient goes to the clinic for rehabilitation techniques. The physical therapist doesn’t visit the patient at home. Their aim is to help the aging restore and maintain mobility, as well as increase their activity level to stay fit and reduce hospitalization.
Some hospitals refer sports related injuries to a specialist under physiotherapy associates from their hospital branch, or private practice. This includes knee, tendon, ligament, broken bones, and wrist injuries. Today it is more common to find sports physiotherapy going beyond treating injuries. There are programs to instruct athletes in techniques to keep muscles from strain, exercise programs to strengthen the body, and patient programs formed to teach the science of certain games such as golf, or tennis in hopes of preventing injury before it happens.
Patients and families with a member who has gone through a stroke will find the help they need at such clinics. Therapists are trained to work with mobility and speech problems.
A few clinics also offer drug rehabilitation, of which may or may not include in-patient care.
Beyond the practice of medicine, numerous clinics offer alternative medicine, or holistic treatment to patients who request it. Depending on the clinic this may include alternative practices like hypnotherapy, aromatherapy, Reiki, reflexology, herbs, and sometimes crystal healing. Though the majorities use aromatherapy, reflexology and herbal medicines more often, the other forms are slowing gaining popularity.
Hospitals and phones include physiotherapy associates listings. Job search engines, such as After College, list places in need of physical therapists. Many branches include information about their clinics and services on their website.
With so many accidents, illnesses, diseases and disorders cropping up in the modern it is of little wonder why more and more hospitals, clinics and private practices advertise openings for various physiotherapy jobs.
Some physiotherapy jobs require the physical therapist to see patients at the hospital, while others allow the therapist to visit patients at their place of residency. Length of time needed for therapy depends on the problem. Therapy can last for up to four weeks to six months, or longer. Whether a person is seen under inpatient or outpatient care also depends on the rules and requirements of the physiotherapist’s job.
Mention physiotherapy jobs and many people think of hospitals and a therapist who aids people with leg, or arm injuries. In actuality, physiotherapy jobs exist beyond hospitals. Therapists are found in schools, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and clinics, and home care agencies. They can be hired alone, or part of a team.
Acute care is one type among the many physiotherapy jobs available. This covers patients with severe illnesses or diseases whom are in need of a swift, but short-term treatment. Physiotherapy jobs in this field also provide care for patients in the emergency room with severe conditions such as a heart attack, those who are in shock from a sudden injury, and the quick onset of respiratory conditions such as asthma attacks.
Physiotherapy jobs in orthopedics demand the evaluation, diagnosis and therapy of injuries, diseases and disorders relating to the musculoskeletal system. Training in this field requires knowledge of the human skeletal system, the repairing and mending of bones, muscles, tendons and joint behavior. Physical therapists use their training in manual techniques and exercise to help the patient recover at a faster rate with minimal distress to their system. Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and Multiple Sclerosis patients are also treated in this field.
Physiotherapy jobs in Geriatrics give therapy and counseling to the aging. Most of these jobs require the therapist to go directly to the patient’s home, or nursing home in order to perform the type of care that is needed. Specially trained physical therapists know how to care for patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, high blood pressure and other diseases often known to affect the elderly.
Pay rates differ between hospitals and practices. Because of the overwhelming need for physical therapists, hospitals and clinics are always adding more jobs to their listings. A physical therapist searching for physiotherapy jobs in his or her branch of medicine may search hospital listings and in classified ads both in local papers and on the Internet.
In health care, anything and everything with claims to help the patient is documented. Case studies are done on everything from the effects of prescription medicine on a person to what type of chair best supports the back. Medical journals include articles on documentation in physiotherapy to keep doctors and others in the health care profession up to date with new methods, ideas that work and those that fail.
Documentation forms and papers generally consist of an introduction to physiotherapy, or the physical issue, a background of physiotherapy, methods tried in the past, methods attempted, guidelines that were followed, or created, medical discussion, and anything else the author, or authors thought to be important to the subject.
Documentation in physiotherapy is an important legal requirement for all professional health care providers. Because of its importance, more areas and physiotherapy cases are being studied, evaluated and documented to show their worth to the community at large.
Documentation in physiotherapy has been issued from study after study on physical therapy for the elderly. While few studies remain inconclusive, or appear to show no change between those receiving physical therapy and those who did not, most documentations prove physiotherapy is beneficial to elderly patients.
A documentation in physiotherapy management of adults with lower limb prostheses conducted by a small group under the British Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Amputation Rehabilitation write a paper with detailed information that lists the need for evidence based clinical guidelines, the aims and objectives of their guidelines, the development process, consensus and external review.
More extensive documentation in physiotherapy is needed within the area of childrens health, including childhood diseases and disorders, such as Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Cystic Fibrosis, development, and speech and language disorders, or injury to the spine, head or neck.
The term, documentation in physiotherapy, also includes providing health care workers with information on guidelines to follow, patient and hospital policies, and strategies centering on physical therapy. These guidelines may be used universally, or by hospital to hospital requirements.
It is also a term for a personal program, or software with forms for physiotherapists to fill out with such things as patients name, cause of illness, therapy used and what methods worked best. Medical software companies sell programs that detail and help health care professionals answer questions when creating documentation in physiotherapy. PhysioGraphic is one such product that can be found online, or in medical catalogs. It is a program suitable for handheld computers, such as PDAs (Personal Digital Assistant) that a doctor may carry around with him or her while visiting patients.
About had the biscuit with all the lower back pain you’ve been having? No wonder, lower back pain is one of THE most irritating things you will ever have to put up with. Looking for lower back pain help? Something you can do without drugs and can do in combination with massage therapy and physiotherapy?
No doubt the thought of even getting up sends shivers up your back, but there’s nothing else for it but to do some of the suggested things in this article in order to get lower back pain help that makes a difference.
One of the first things you can do, and you might think it’s silly, but most people don’t know how to sit the right way. Right, you’ve been sitting that way for years now and it’s never bothered you – until now. And now you need lower back pain help to get through the day.
Now about sitting – make sure you are sitting in chairs with straight backs, not those curved office thingies that are supposed to give you lumbar support you don’t even feel. Well the reason you don’t feel it most of the time is because it just doesn’t exist. No wonder you need lower back pain help. In any event, what you do is keep your knees a little higher than your hips by adjusting the seat or, if you prefer, using a low stool to prop your feet up on. When you go to turn, turn your whole body, not just twist at the waist.
Driving is a different kettle of fish. Do sit straight and move the seat forward (unless you have long legs that is). The seat being forward helps you not lean forward to reach the controls but hey, if you’re tall, your arms will likely be long enough to reach anyhow. If you’re going to be on the road for a long period of time, you might want to put a rolled up towel or small pillow or get one of the ergonomic beaded seats for your lower back. These small, yet effective measures will help you diminish lower back pain. Easy measures to get lower back pain help without spending too much.
And now for something completely different! How to stand properly to give your back the right support it needs. Never stopped to think about it did you? Not many people do. If you stand for long periods of time then every so often, rest one foot on a low stool (relieves pressure on your lower back). The trick is to alternate feet every five to fifteen minutes. Remember to keep up with the good posture, which means trying to keep your ears, shoulders and hips in a straight line head pulled up and stomach pulled in. Granted this is somewhat difficult if you are a bit on the large size, but you get the idea.
And sleeping, here’s the more difficult thing to accomplish, but, having said that, it can be done. Just takes a bit of work, and if you have been suffering from lower back pain, help is always appreciated. Sleep on your side with your knees bent. That’s the secret, along with (if this suits you) a pillow under your head to support your neck and a pillow between your knees. Back sleeper are you? Easy, put pillows under your knees and one under your lower back (a small one) and for those of you who sleep on your stomach you put a pillow under your hips.
Now this is if you can remember to do this and if you can keep the pillows in place while you toss and turn at night. It might take a bit of finessing, but you should see an improvement in your lower back pain by trying this. You will of course have a firm mattress, not a soft one (unless you use a ½ inch plywood board under the mattress to support it).
One of the most important piece of equipment used by physical therapists is a physiotherapy couch, or bench. This flat cushioned, vinyl covered chair, bed, table, or couch on an adjustable frame is where the client lays or sits during a therapy session. It is usually comes on rollers for easy movability with foot sections and back adjustments that move in positive and negative degree positions. Some are sold with a small stool for the therapist. It is used in hospitals, clinics, and private practices.
The main part of the physiotherapy couch supports the body and lies in a horizontal position. Equipment comes with a head and neck rest that, depending on the model, may or may not be detachable. This allows the patient to comfortably lie on the back or stomach according to individual need. The couch may include manual adjustments, or electrical controls.
A physiotherapist may choose to use a physiotherapy couch for clients with a variety of ailments, injuries and disorders. Generally it is used in massage therapy for clients with back pain and injury, but is equally useful for working with patients with leg and foot injury.
Some companies, such as Delta, offer additional parts for their couches and tables. These include side supports for keeping the patient from falling, shoulder and arm supports, a vertical lift, manual adjustments for foot sections, a three to seven section table, and the option for thicker cushioning. An advanced physiotherapy couch can be adjusted so that the table lies horizontally flat or tilts up to a forty five degree angle.
Some medical equipment companies are trying to come up with better couch designs. This is due mainly to current couches, or benches being too short for a patient to comfortably rest his or her legs on. At present, therapy couches can be bought with a width up to eighty inches wide.
When a physiotherapist couch is unavailable, a physical therapist may set up a temporary arrangement, such as the use of a bed, floor or table. Pillows and blankets may be used for client support and comfort.
A portable physiotherapist couch is light enough for the physical therapist, or masseuse to bring straight to the client’s home or work place. Instead of an adjustable metal bar frame and system for support, lightweight portable couches are built on a metal, or wooden frame that uses a cable system. The cables tighten to support weight as it is put onto the cushions.
Physiotherapist couches, tables and chairs are sold in a variety of colors with, or without additional hardware. All are made with both the therapist’s and client’s needs in mind.