Particularly for seniors, physical therapy is beneficial for improving strength, balance, mobility and overall fitness. For seniors recovering from injury or illness and for those experiencing chronic pain, physical therapy can help relieve pain and restore physical functions to make daily tasks and activities easier. The ultimate goal of the Healing Hands therapists is to keep seniors as active and independent as possible.
Seniors can benefit from a therapy program at Healing Hands for a multitude of conditions including:
- Recovering from injuries such as a broken hip
- Pain in all parts of the body such as knee, back, shoulder, wrist, etc.
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Cerebral Palsy
- And many others
Recovering from Falls
Falling is one of the biggest risks facing the elderly, because it often leads to hip fractures, which frequently cause a downward spiral. According to Jennifer M. Bottomley, PhD, MS, PT, president of the geriatrics section of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and adviser to the surgeon general, one of the main things that brings older people to the physical therapist is a fall. “They want and need to maintain their independence,” she says.
Balance is a key issue with older people. Numerous systems in the body are required to function properly and together — nutrition, oxygenation of blood, muscle strength, joint receptors, vision, inner ear. A customized plan from a Healing Hands therapist can address many of these issues to set up a preventative program as well as recovery from a fall.
Individual Treatment Plans
Every person has an individual background. In their lifetime, a senior may have experienced an auto accident, football or other sports injury, or may have genetic predispositions for certain types of conditions. No two people are the same.
Your Healing Hands therapist will customize a program to meet your specific needs. They will listen to your concerns and address the issues that are affecting you with a variety of treatment tools.
Seniors receiving Medicare are usually eligible to receive physical therapy under plan guidelines. The Healing Hands administrative staff will be happy to check on your eligibility.
Can Physical Therapy Reverse Aging? The human body goes through a number of changes, as one grows older. A decline in muscle mass and bone density can lead to muscle fatigue and joint pain. It’s common for seniors to experience a degree of fear and apprehension prior to exercise.
There is good news. Seniors can remain physically active and lead happy, healthy and productive lives with the help of physical therapy. Exercise in a safe, controlled environment under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist goes a long way in improving quality of life.
Although there are physical limitations associated with aging, the human body can always respond, adapt and grow stronger as long as it is challenged. Physical activity combined with healthy nutrition is important to maintain health and vitality for older individuals.
Healing Hands therapists can design an exercise program to help seniors deal with some of the consequences associated with aging, which include:
1. Increased risk of falls – Falls can occur due to a loss in the body’s ability to maintain balance, posture, and equilibrium. A physical therapist can create an exercise program to improve muscle tone, strength, joint movement, and balance. This can prevent dangerous consequences like broken bones, allowing seniors to stay active and healthy.
2. Pain and discomfort of arthritis – Joint wear and tear can result in osteoarthritis. This leads to joint pain and swelling, which can restrict movement. Physical therapy includes a variety of treatment options including hot and cold treatments, massages, and range of motion exercises. Splints and custom made orthotic devices can also help.
3. Incidence of strokes – A stroke can significantly impact their quality of life. Mobility, speech, memory, and vision can be affected. An exercise program to improve mobility and independence is an essential component of stroke prevention and treatment.
4. Onset of Alzheimer’s disease – This is an irreversible condition that can be associated with old age. It gets progressively worse once it starts. Healing Hands therapists can help maintain the patient’s quality of life by providing exercises to maintain strength and mobility.
5. Osteoporosis – This is a condition characterized by thinning bones that become brittle and prone to fractures. Physical therapy prescribed weight training exercises to increase bone density and improve muscle strength are a cornerstone of prevention.
No one can escape the consequences of aging. However, every single person can plan ahead and maintain strength and mobility to age gracefully. The best way to stay active and healthy is to challenge the bones, joints and muscles in a controlled, progressive manner. That’s why physical therapy is crucial for individuals of all ages, especially seniors.
Remain positive, and ask your Healing Hands therapist about the right and the wrong way to exercise. Challenge your body in a safe, yet progressive manner. Instead of saying “Will this hurt me?”, you should be asking yourself “How can I do this safely and how can I remain active?”
While physical therapy cannot reverse aging, it can certainly help you age gracefully, and live a happy, healthy and productive life as the years go by.
Call today to schedule an evaluation. We can offer you a range of exercises and other treatment options to keep your mind and body feeling younger than you may realize. We look forward to serving you.
Contact us today at 800-401-1306.
We can determine if your insurance will cover the cost of therapy and we will work with your doctor to ensure you have the best care possible!