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Four Ways Physiotherapy Can Help Patients With Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal Cord Injury in AlbertaAccording to a report compiled by the VancouverSun, around 86,000 Canadians are living with spinal cord injury in the country with its frequency increasing at an alarming rate of 4,300 new cases every year. A Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) usually is the result of a slip and fall or motor vehicular accident in which your spinal cord gets injured. A direct consequence of this injury is a loss of motion or paralysis.

Other issues associated with an SCI are a loss of mobility and balance, difficulty in breathing, chronic pain, and weakness in muscles. Beyond, physiological problems, an SCI also has an adverse effect on a person’s psychological and emotional well being. Physiotherapy is essential for patients to recuperate from this injury and restore the maximum mobility to their limbs. Regular exercise and massage therapy with a qualified professional also benefit a patient with spinal cord injury in Alberta in the following ways:

1) Helps in Elevating Pain

An injury to the spinal cord usually results in weakened muscles and chronic pain. A Physical Therapist (PT) uses different techniques such as massage therapy, acupuncture and dry needling to alleviate pain from the patient’s muscles and prescribes movements that strengthen the muscles and reduce the frequency of spasms.

2) Increases Mobility

A direct outcome of a spinal cord injury in Alberta is a loss of motion which directly affects the lifestyle of the patient and prevents him from performing everyday activities such as reading and sitting up. Depending on the severity and the type of the ailment, a physiotherapy expert plans an exercise routine for the patient. This helps the patient in performing regular activities without risking the recurrence of pain and injury. With the help of specific stretching exercises, a PT also helps in restoring the maximum mobility to the patient’s muscles.

3) Improves Balance

Due to acute, chronic pain and weakness in the muscles, most patients experience a significant loss in balance and alignment post a spinal cord injury. A physiotherapist uses different vestibular rehabilitation techniques such as advanced balance and gait training and specific vestibular exercises to help patients improve their balance and alignment. A PT will also make sure the transition to the mobile device such as a wheelchair is streamlined and comfortable for the patient.

4) Facilitates Breathing

A spinal cord injury has a direct impact on your chest muscles making breathing difficult for most patients and increasing the chances of lung infection. Depending on the severity of your injury, a physiotherapist uses different exercises to make breathing easier. Regular deep breathing exercises with an expert also help in increasing lung function and reduce the probability of infections.

A physiotherapist, post a thorough assessment of your condition, devices a personalized and appropriate physiotherapy program which focuses on your specific needs. This also helps in keeping the patients motivated throughout the recovery process reducing the chances of depression or despondency. The goal our physiotherapy team is to help patients maximize their recovery potential and return back to their original lifestyle as best as they can. Consult our experts at Emerald Hills Physio & Sports Clinic to know more rehabilitation from a spinal cord injury in Alberta.