January 27, 2021
As we humans grow older, we become susceptible to different agerelated conditions. Arthritis, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s, cancer, fractures, joints that require replacement, stroke, decreased body balance, incontinence, and what not! The aged therefore requires special care and attention. That’s where physical therapy comes in. Geriatric physical therapy isn’t just the route to wellness, it also focuses on the treatment of the above mentioned conditions, thereby helping to improve the lifestyle of the adult population
Orthopaedic physical therapy, for instance, focuses on damage and injuries to musculoskeletal variety, as well as assists in recovery after orthopaedic surgeries.
For the aged with cardiovascular conditions, cardio pulmonary physiotherapy plays an important role. For those who have had a heart attack, or those with weak lungs, breathing issues, etc., physiotherapy will work wonders in improving their endurance,as also promote functional independence. Finally, people with neurological conditions such as stroke, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, physiotherapy will help improve their balance and mobility, thus enabling them to carry on their day to day activities. Today, when we’re witnessing a pandemic, we know how susceptible elderly people are, and how physiotherapy is helping them with breathing exercises to enable them to enhance their endurance, mobility and physical functions. Physiotherapy is hence an important and integral part of the treatment for Covid-19.
Geriatrics is the branch of medicine that focuses on health care of the elderly. It aims to promote health and prevent and treat diseases and disabilities in older adults.
Physiotherapy plays an important role in geriatrics rehabilitation. Geriatric physiotherapy became a speciality in the study of physical therapy in 1989. Since then, physiotherapist have worked to understand the problems facing the ageing population. There is a long list of problems geriatric physiotherapists deal with including Alzheimer’s, Arthritis, Balance disorder, Cancer, Cardio Vascular Diseases, Incontinence, Joint replacement, Pulmonary diseases, Stroke, etc.
Geriatric physiotherapy aims to help the elderly to maintain functional independence and overall well-being. It also helps in:
As we age, our body undergoes multiple degenerative changes, leading to loss of strength in muscle tone which restricts mobility and flexibility. We experience changes in social and emotional functioning with the increase in age, affecting our quality of life and general well being. Geriatric care is important as it involves a sequence of preventive and intervening measures that provide the elderly the care and support essential to improve and manage their functional independence and quality of life.
By Venkatesh Kumpala
Mr. Venkatesh Kumpala is the Consultant Physiotherapist at Indiana Hospital
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