How Physiotherapy Helps With Chronic Joint Pain

Health & Medical Blog

Taking painkillers isn't the only way to deal with chronic joint pain; physiotherapy can also help. You will appreciate the significance of physiotherapy in managing chronic pain once you understand what it does to your body. Here are four ways in which physical therapy helps to alleviate pain:

It Improves Breathing

Slowing down your rate of breathing may reduce your level of joint pain. A physiotherapist can work with you to control your breathing to achieve this effect. One way in which controlled breathing helps is that it affects the sympathetic nervous system, which controls blood flow and skin temperature.

An example of a technique that may work is Foursquare breathing. It works like this: you inhale, hold your breath, exhale, and hold. Ensure that you take a count of four for each of the four steps. The four steps make one cycle, and you need to do about ten cycles. Your physical therapist will show you more breathing techniques.

It Optimizes Blood Circulation

Poor blood circulation is a common cause of joint pain, so improving circulation may also alleviate the pain. Poor circulation is problematic because it denies your joint tissues the oxygen and nourishment they deserve. This damages the affected tissues, and your body sends pain signals to inform you of the damage. Your physical therapist can provide deep tissue massages to help you warm up the body and improve your circulation. 

It Strengthens Joint Tissues

Physical therapy exercises increase the strength and flexibility of joints, which reduces the pain. However, engaging in physical exercise if you already have joint pain is a delicate affair because you can cause further damage to your tissues. Therefore, this is something you should only do under the guidance of your doctor or physiotherapist.

It Helps With Weight Management

The more you weigh, the more stress you are placing on your joints. This is especially true of joints on your lower limbs. Therefore, reducing your weight can also help to relieve joint pain. As any health professional will tell you, physical exercise is one of the best methods for cutting weight. Sticking to a good (healthy) diet can help, but it's best if you do it alongside exercise.

Once you start working with a physiotherapist, like Eastern Shore Physical Therapy, you will learn that the benefits of the therapy go beyond the four discussed above. Maximize your gain by following your therapist's advice to the letter. Also, never try new exercise techniques or regimes without running them by your physical therapist first.


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