Ask Your Physiotherapist about Pain and Injury Management

As a physiotherapist I get asked many questions on a daily basis that range from all types of pain and injury management. This blog post answers many of the questions you or someone you know may have been wanting to ask. If you want to ask your physiotherapist about pain and injury management, then feel free to write a question in the comments section below and I will do my best to respond as soon as I can.

Q. My mother fractured her wrist. The plaster has just come off. When should she start physio?

A. It is strongly advisable to start physiotherapy straight away. Your mother needs to get the wrist moving and to regain strength as soon as possible so that she can get back to normal activity. Leaving physiotherapy for too long may lead to ongoing pain, weakness and stiffness in the wrist and hand.

Q.I get a lot of shin pain since I started running. How can I overcome this?

A. Shin problems like this can occur due to a combination of factors. They include overuse, poor foot wear and poor recovery. They can also be due to tightness or weakness in the surrounding muscles, like the calf. Poor foot mechanics, such as pronating rear feet, can also be involved. The good news is that your physiotherapist can help greatly.

Q. I get recurrent chest pain. My doctor said it was “musculoskeletal”. Can physiotherapy help?

A. As long as your doctor is sure that your chest pain is not due to heart, lung or other serious problems, then it is worth consulting a physiotherapist. In many instances, chest pain can be due to problems in the mid back (thoracic spine). Tightness, poor posture, and overuse (e.g. playing too much golf), can also contribute.

Q. Is heat an effective way of relieving pain?

A. A recent study (Spine, 2002), has indicated that heat may offer better pain relief than over the counter medication for lower back pain. In the study, subjects wore a low level heat wrap for 8 hours a day and this gave better pain relief than medication. Heat relaxes spasms, improves blood flow and works as a counter-irritant in an injured part.

Q. I have an arthritic knee and my specialist said to see my physiotherapist for exercises. What will this involve?

A. There are many different exercises that might help an arthritic knee. The main focus of exercises for the knee is to strengthen the muscles at the front of your thigh. These muscles (the quadriceps) support and stabilise the knee. Recent research has indicated that thigh strengthening exercises lead to improvements in levels of pain and disability in people with arthritic knees.

As you can see your physiotherapist can help all of these problems. Your local physio will typically use hands-on type treatment, but you will often need to do exercises to stretch and strengthen your local muscles and soft tissue.

If you or anyone you know is experiencing these kinds of problems or would like some advice, then visit a trusted and reliable physiotherapist at Joslin Physiotherapy and Nutrition or call today to book your appointment on (03) 9912 2000.



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