Role of physiotherapy in pain management

Pain management is a way to reduce pain through physiotherapy. It is done without the use of medicines, steroids, injections, and surgeries.

What is the role of physiotherapy in pain management?

Physiotherapists play an important role in managing aches and pains.

The following are the steps:

    1. Diagnosing the root cause of pain
    2. Collaborating with the patient in drawing up a treatment plan
    3. Using the personalised exercise programme to reduce and abolish pain
    4. Regular monitoring to track progress.
    5. Pain education: motivation, awareness, and lifestyle modification wherever required.
    6. Prevention or recurrence management.
    7. Discharge and long-term follow-up

How does the physiotherapist find the reason for the pain?

Pain works as an alarm system in our body, which often indicates the presence of an infection, injury, or pathology in the body. Once the problem is acknowledged, the alarm bell needs to be switched off. This is where pain management treatment comes into the picture.

Pain originating from joints, muscles, nerves, bones, and discs is confirmed through history, movement testing, and special tests which your physiotherapist runs on you to confirm the diagnosis. Based on the structure involved, a treatment protocol is designed which is customised according to the patient. Every patient has a unique treatment plan.

However, the pain as a result of infection or broken bones is referred to physicians.

What are the techniques and machines used for pain management?

The following are the treatments used for reducing pain

  1. TENS, ITS and UST
  2. Dry Needling
  3. Cupping
  4. Education and awareness
  5. Lifestyle management
  6. Posture and ergonomics
  7. Relaxation therapy and mindfulness
  1. McKenzie and Mulligan therapy
  2. Chiropractic
  3. Soft-tissue mobilisation
  4. Tapping
  5. Therapeutic exercises
  6. Goal-oriented functional training to restart activities like returning to the office, sports, or leisure activities such as swimming, dancing, and gardening

Research has proved that a combination of therapies is more effective in pain management.

Is physiotherapy enough to manage pain?

Physiotherapy treatment is a collaborative effort in which both the patient and the physiotherapist work together to understand how pain affects the patient’s activities, desired goals, and preferences.

The physiotherapist, considering the clinical as well as the patient’s goal, draws a treatment plan and helps the patient execute it. In some cases, we even collaborate with physicians, orthopaedics, rheumatologists, psychologists, and family members to achieve a complete reduction of pain. Evidence suggests that physiotherapy has a positive impact on pain reduction.

The use of physiotherapy interventions for managing pain has even shown improvement in depression, anxiety, stress, lifestyle, quality of pain, and reduced productivity at work.

How does physiotherapy help chronic pain with no damage on X-ray or MRI?

If you have pain that does not show many significant problems on X-ray or MRI, then it indicates weaknesses in muscles, alignment of the body, or a stressed lifestyle. These weaknesses cannot be seen in any scan but can only be examined by a physiotherapist. With muscle conditioning, you can restore activities and movements that have become difficult due to pain.

Can I learn to manage my pain myself?

A successful pain treatment done by physiotherapy is when you are trained to manage the pain yourself. It reduces the dependency on painkiller medicines and ointments.

How to avoid steroids for pain?

Zone active physiotherapy clinic has various electro-modalities engineered to reduce pain without the use of steroid injections. Recent research shows when these machines are given in optimum dosage with therapeutic exercises, the effects last a long time.

What are the risks and side effects of physiotherapy for my pain?

Since every human body is unique, their pain is also different. It is important that your physio listens carefully to your history and notices the trend of the pain such as what aggravates and relieves the pain, if there are any red flags or any coexisting medical conditions that can influence the pain.

Considering the individuality of the patient, a personalised exercise plan is designed. There are minimal to no side effects from such treatment.

Please feel free to give us a call or book an appointment to enquire about your pain.


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