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Physiotherapy for Arthritis Sufferers

Posted Oct 15th, 2022

For people who live with arthritis, accomplishing daily tasks can feel like an insurmountable obstacle due to joint pain, inflammation and swelling. Couple this with being unable to predict when you might have a bad day and it's easy to feel discouraged. Today, our Stittsville physiotherapists explain how physiotherapy is an essential component of arthritis treatment and pain management. 

If you or someone you love lives with arthritis, you are likely intimately acquainted with the physical weakness, painful joints and swelling and inflammation that often flare up in people who suffer from this condition. You may feel exhausted by mid-day if you've had problems sleeping. 

In addition to impacting your everyday life and well-being, these symptoms can be difficult to predict and plan around from day to day; you may feel better one day and worse the next. 

Checking every day chores such as cooking and cleaning off your task list, exercising regularly, enjoying normal hobbies and recreational activities and even playing with your pet or feeding your grandchildren can feel like a monumental task if pain and inflammation are particularly severe that day. 

While adults aged 65 or older are the demographic most likely to suffer from arthritis, people of all ages (including children) can be impacted. With that in mind, your doctor or health team may recommend physiotherapy and other treatments can help sufferers manage symptoms and remain as active as possible. 

In this post, we'll discuss arthritis and share how physiotherapy at our clinic in Stittsville can help. 

What is arthritis?

Another word for "joint inflammation", osteoarthritis is an umbrella term for more than 100 rheumatic conditions and diseases that impact the joints. Inflammation can also affect ligaments and tendons around the joints, and you may notice a sudden or gradual onset of symptoms. 

The two main types of arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. 

Rheumatoid Arthritis

The joint capsule is lined with a tough membrane that surrounds all the parts of the joint. In people with rheumatoid arthritis, the body's immune system attacks the lining (synovial membrane), which swells and becomes inflamed. The disease can eventually progress to destroy cartilage and bone within the joint. 

Osteoarthritis

The hard, slick coating on the ends of the bones is joint cartilage, which cushions the ends of the bones and helps the joints function nearly without friction. 

However, if the cartilage is damaged, bones can grind together. Wear and tear may occur over many years, leading to restricted movement and painful symptoms. An infection or injury of the joint can also cause wear and tear to progress more rapidly. 

How can arthritis be managed with physiotherapy treatment?

Your doctor or health team may recommend a number of treatment methods to manage your arthritis, including physiotherapy. A physiotherapist can complete a thorough assessment to determine how arthritis is impacting your mobility and functioning. They'll then develop a personalized treatment plan to help you get back to being active while protecting your joints. 

A physiotherapist can:

  • Help you set attainable goals so you can find the right balance between activity and rest 
  • Assist you in managing your condition 
  • Offer advice on managing pain and avoiding exercise-related injuries, along with reassurance 
  • Address any questions or concerns

The results of our assessment will determine which specific services and treatments we recommend to help ease symptoms and make daily life more manageable. These treatments may include:

What are the benefits of physiotherapy for arthritis sufferers?

Your physiotherapist can tell you how to prevent, treat and manage your pain and other arthritis symptoms. They can also help you improve mobility and quality of life by:

  • Alleviating pain 
  • Strengthening muscles
  • Reducing inflammation 
  • Helping you regain movement in your joints 

Our team at Motion works Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Centre in Stittsville looks forward to working with you. 

Your physiotherapist can create an exercise and treatment plan tailored to your needs. This plan may also specify general daily activities you may find enjoyable, such as walking, to help you stay active and independent as you manage this life-changing disease.  

Our physiothrapists can alleviate arthritis pain and other symptoms using a variety of methods.

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Have a question? Our team is here to help.

(613) 831-4054