Physical therapy is a medical field that assists individuals in restoring and maintaining physical health. The practice is performed by licensed medical professionals and promotes a wide array of improvements in physical wellbeing for people of all ages and types. Physical therapy can especially benefit older individuals who are either experiencing natural decline from aging or are recovering from illness or accidents. With the right physical treatment, seniors can recover their mobility and maintain a healthier life. Read on to find five ways that physical therapy can benefit seniors.
1. It Restores Lost Functions
One of the primary uses of physical therapy is the way the process can help people recover from declining physical health. With older age comes natural decrease in mobility, flexibility and other natural bodily functions, which can be restored and maintained through therapy.
Those who are recovering from a medical emergency such as a stroke are also recommended to undergo rehabilitation through physical treatments. In the event of such medical conditions, loss of motor functions is inevitable, but thankfully can be recovered with a proper physical therapy program. As bodies naturally age, accidents can happen, but the proper treatment programs in medical facilities can help patients recover safely.
2. It Improves Balance
With age comes a natural loss in balance and maintaining one’s stability while standing and walking. The act of maintaining a solid balance requires many bodily functions to be properly tuned. Such functions include but are not limited to having a healthy circulation of oxygen into the blood, having accurate peripheral vision and maintaining muscle strength. Physical therapy can help improve each of these functions to help patients keep a stable balance during everyday activities.
3. It Helps Reduce Pain
Aches and pains are inevitable as a part of the aging process. Individuals afflicted with arthritis may find the constant pain in their joints makes enjoying daily life a challenge. Physical therapy can help lessen pain experienced from common arthritis to pain endured during an accident or serious illness.
While pain in some instances cannot always be fully cured, physical treatments from a professional at a medical center can help reduce discomfort and make daily activities more feasible to accomplish without as much strain.
4. It Builds Muscle Strength
Muscle strength is not just for bodybuilders. Having strong and functional muscles is crucial to going about your daily life comfortably. With weakened muscles, simple movement is hindered and ordinary tasks become more difficult to accomplish. A body starts to wear down with age, so maintaining it is critical for staying healthy.
Whether a patient is in the process of recovering from a medical condition or has lost muscle strength just from either age or inactivity, physical therapy can help restore atrophied muscles. A physical therapist can put those experiencing decline in muscular strength in a daily fitness program to build back those lost functions. Patients who undergo training may be surprised at how much the quality of their life improves just by having stronger arms and legs.
5. It Improves Flexibility
Along with restored muscle strength helping in movement and core strength, having stronger arms and legs via physical therapy sessions can improve one’s flexibility. The ability to have full movement and range of one’s limbs is important for functioning in daily life.
A lack of flexibility can occur both from natural age as well as the result of recovering from a medical condition, and physical therapy can help build back these important skills along with general core body strength.
As bodies grow older, they become more prone to physical decline and health risks. For anyone who suffers a sharp decline in any form of physical health, seeing a medical professional for PT sessions can help restore those declining functions. Physical therapy can benefit people of any age group, but as more problems can arise with age, seniors can potentially see great improvements from sessions at medical facilities.