A physical therapist helps people regain mobility after an injury or surgery or manage chronic condition symptoms. In addition to speeding up the recovery process, physical therapy also improves mobility. A fall can cause a decrease in mobility, a broken bone, chronic pain, and depression in some people. It is common for seniors to suffer from chronic conditions such as diabetes and arthritis.
Older adults can relieve or manage debilitating symptoms through private physical therapy or an in-house program at Riverview Retirement Community. As a senior who struggles with mobility, getting the right therapy can be a huge help if you want to improve your health. Let’s take a closer look at a few benefits of physical therapy for seniors.
Reduced Risk of Falls
Over 30,000 older adults die each year from falls related to falls, according to CDC statistics. It is most common for elderly patients who have fallen to undergo physical therapy due to their injuries. It is, however, possible to minimize the risk of a fall by working with a physical therapist before it occurs.
Fall risk increases with poor balance, coordination, and muscle weakness. Physical therapy for seniors aims to improve their range of motion, muscle strength, balance, and flexibility. It is possible to remain active as a senior without increasing the risk of injury.
Faster Injury Recovery
Loss of mobility, muscular atrophy, and other serious health complications can occur after surgery or during a prolonged illness. Physical therapy can help seniors resume movement in a safe and supervised environment. Therapy exercises are designed to reduce chronic pain, relieve muscle stiffness, increase strength, and increase flexibility.
Chronic Condition Treatment
People of all ages are affected by several chronic health problems that affect their quality of life. However, seniors are more likely to suffer from Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, strokes, osteoporosis, and lower back pain than younger people. The benefits of regular therapy are evident in the improvement of various chronic conditions.
In older adults, nerve pain, arthritis, and muscle and joint pain are often common problems they suffer from as they age. There is no doubt that doctors can prescribe drugs to ease pain, but they can also have unintended side effects.
Certain conditions can be effectively managed with the help of physical therapy without causing dangerous side effects. Physical therapists use massage therapy and other treatments to treat pain at its source, including:
- Electrical stimulation
- Water therapy
- Ice and heat
- Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT)
Support Senior Independence
Physical therapy is most beneficial for older adults in helping them lead independent, confident lives. Seniors can avoid falling if they work with a physical therapist. Drugs aren’t the only way seniors can regain strength, balance, and flexibility.
Older adults are not only becoming physically fit, but they are becoming mentally healthy as well. Combining all these efforts allows one to maintain a more robust immune system and live healthier lives.
The physical health of seniors can dramatically affect their overall quality of life. By working with a qualified physical therapist, seniors can regain their independence, reduce the risk of falling, recover faster from injuries, and manage their pain naturally.