What is physiotherapy?

3 Mar 2014 | Physiotherapy

If you are ill, see your Doctor. If you are injured, see your Physiotherapist. Physiotherapy is professional healthcare position that addresses injury and some illness. Physiotherapists are highly trained experts in movement and function who work in partnership with their patients, assisting them to overcome disorders, which may have been present from birth, acquired through accident or injury, or are the result of ageing or life-changing events. Physiotherapy is the treatment of disease, injury, or deformity by physical methods such as massage, heat treatment, and exercise rather than by drugs or surgery.

Physiotherapy can help to recover from injury, reduce pain and stiffness, and increase mobility. A physiotherapist can also help you prevent further injury by listening to your needs and working with you to plan the most appropriate treatment for your condition, including setting goals and treatment outcomes. In short…. PAIN REDUCTION!!

As first contact practitioners, a doctor’s referral is not required to see a physiotherapist. Physiotherapists, doctors, and other health professionals will often work as part of a team to plan and manage treatment for a specific condition.

What sort of treatments do physiotherapists use?

Physiotherapists are trained to assess your condition, diagnose the problem, and help you understand what’s wrong. Your treatment plan will take into account your lifestyle, activities, and general health.

The following are common treatment methods physiotherapists may use:

  • manual therapy including joint mobilisations
  • exercise therapy specific to the injury or disability
  • massage and deep tissue work to reduce stiffness and pain
  • muscle re-education to improve balance and overall control
  • breathing exercises to improve lung function
  • soft tissue mobilisation (massage)
  • acupuncture or dry needling
  • hydrotherapy (pool therapy)
  • assistance with use of walking aids, braces, splints, casting etc.

Where will you find a Physiotherapist?

Physiotherapists work in all sectors of healthcare, including public and private hospitals, private practice, rehabilitation centres, sporting clubs and community health centres.

What qualifications are required to practice as a physiotherapist?

Physiotherapy courses vary across the country and entry may be through a bachelor, masters or professional doctorate program. Physiotherapists are required by law to be registered with the Physiotherapists Registration Board in the state or territory in which they are practising.