Treat Painful Arthritic Symptoms with Physical Therapy - Not Drugs
When a person is living with arthritis, especially in a weight-bearing joint like the knee or hip, taking an opioid painkiller for relief can be very tempting.
The unfortunate truth is, however, that while opioids can temporarily relieve pain, the arthritic bones still continue to grind together, making the underlying cause of the condition even worse.
That's before even considering all of the addictive qualities of opioids. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an average of 130 people die from opioid overdoses every day here in the U.S. Since 1999, the number of opioid-related deaths has multiplied sixfold.
Instead of turning to opioids for your arthritis aches and pains, consider the chemical-free alternative to arthritis pain: physical therapy.
Contact FYZICAL Therapy and Balance Centers of Bradenton, FL to learn more about how working with a physical therapist can relieve the symptoms of your arthritis and help you live more comfortably.
How can physical therapy help treat arthritis pain?
If you have been diagnosed with arthritis, working with a physical therapist can help you learn strategies to manage your symptoms without having to resort to analgesics.
During your first appointment, your physical therapist will ask you specific questions regarding your medical history. You will also be asked to describe the arthritic symptoms that you are experiencing, and how they may be affecting your daily life.
Your physical therapist will also likely have you perform a few simple tests during your first appointment, which may vary depending on which joints are being affected by arthritis. These tests will be used to determine how far your arthritis has progressed, in order to assist your physical therapist in developing the best possible treatment plan for you.
Overall, you can expect your physical therapist to test the range of motion in any and all of the affected joints, as well as your strength and balance.
Manual therapy is likely to be part of your treatment plan for arthritis management. This specialized type of therapeutic massage not only relieves stiffness and pain in arthritic joints but can also help loosen up tissues and widen your range of motion.
Body mechanics will be another part of your treatment plan for arthritis. Your physical therapist will teach you the right ways to perform daily activities with minimal impact on your arthritic joints. This will help in preventing that grinding sensation when you move, and will also help prevent your arthritis from getting worse. Body mechanics will be another part of your treatment plan for arthritis. Your physical therapist will teach you the right ways to perform daily activities with minimal impact on your arthritic joints. This will help in preventing that grinding sensation when you move, and will also help prevent your arthritis from getting worse.
Exercise and weight management may also be part of your physical therapy treatments, if necessary. Depending on the location of your arthritis, your therapist may recommend water exercises in a pool for joint relief.
The goal of many of the aforementioned treatments is to increase your strength so that muscle structures can better bear your weight, without putting undue strain on the arthritic joints.
Common symptoms of arthritis
Arthritis symptoms can be managed with the help of physical therapy.
Some of the most common symptoms that arthritis sufferers have to deal with include:
- Joint pain: Arthritic joints may hurt during or after physical movement.
- Achiness and stiffness in the joints: The joints are especially stiff upon waking and may feel sensitive or painful when touched.
- Decreased mobility: An arthritic joint can restrict your range of motion, to the point where you are unable to carry out daily tasks like you used to.
- Grinding sensations: Arthritis is a result of lost cartilage, the material in the joints which acts as a cushion and lubricant between bones. The loss of cartilage can make it feel as if the patient's bones are grinding together when they move.
- Swollen tissues: The pain and inflammation associated with arthritis can cause tissue swelling near the impacted joint. The area surrounding the joint might feel warm to the touch.
Discover the benefits of our holistic treatment methods today
Physical therapy can help you manage arthritis pain without turning to potentially harmful opioids or other painkillers.
Contact FYZICAL Therapy and Balance Centers of Bradenton, FL today to schedule your first appointment with a licensed physical therapist.