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Apr 24, 2007

Physical Therapy And Arthritis: Getting Back What's Been Taken

By Greg Marsh

Physical therapy can do what nothing else can do for your arthritis. Medications can lessen the pain and help to slow the progression of your condition. Surgery can help to fix the severely damaged joint. But, physical therapy can help you to get back what arthritis has taken from you. Most doctors will provide you with a treatment plan that will include some forms of arthritic physical therapy unless your body is beyond that point. While it will not be the only thing that your doctor has you do, it will be a key component to helping to get yourself back on track.

What’s The Goal?

Physical therapy has one goal when it comes to arthritis. That goal is to help you to improve the use of your joint so that you can get back into doing the things that you like and need to do without pain. Since your joints are at a point that they are being attacked, it is important to give your joint the help it needs to strengthen your muscles and to help increase the range of motion you have. The process can include a number of different things, but usually involves working with a practitioner who is skilled in improving those aspects of your joint health. With time and persistence, much of what you’ve lost can come back to you. For most, the need to get this back is well worth the work that it takes to get to that point.

You can benefit from many aspects of physical therapy. For example, if you are overweight, even slightly, with the right physical therapy you can shed the pounds and take stress off your joints by doing so. You’ll increase your body’s chances of dealing with the pain and inflammation better, too, if you are at a healthier weight. In addition to that, you also learn a lot about your arthritis. You get the benefit of being informed so you can make decisions daily that will encourage a healthy lifestyle with arthritis.

You also learn a wide range of techniques that will help you to monitor and improve your pain levels. By doing simple things, such as using your muscles correctly to minimize pain, you can actually lessen the severity of the pain you feel. You also learn how to modify your activities to increase function of your joint or not to hurt it further.

Probably the most important aspect of physical therapy and arthritis is working on your muscles. By increasing the strength of your muscles in the area, you decrease the activity and workload of the joint. Muscles that are stronger can help to compensate for a weaker joint. You also get to improve the amount of movement you have with that joint. By increasing the range of motion you have, you lessen the impact that arthritis has had on your daily life.

Don’t skip the physical therapy. Don’t assume it’s a waste of your time. What it is happens to be one of the most effective ways of treating the arthritis pain and movement loss that’s happened to you.

For important information from Greg about rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, click the link.

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