Often referred to as physio, physiotherapy uses physical methods, such as massage and manipulation, to promote healing and wellbeing. Physiotherapy treatments are often used to help restore a person's range of movement after injury or illness.
Physiotherapists help and treat people of all ages with physical problems caused by illness, accident or ageing. They also work with people who have mental health problems, stroke patients and children.
Physiotherapy helps people to improve their range of movement in order to promote health and well-being. This can help people to live more independently. Physiotherapists concentrate particularly on problems that affect muscles, bones, the heart, circulation and lungs. Physiotherapy involves a range of treatments, including manipulation, massage, exercise, electrotherapy and hydrotherapy.
Physiotherapy techniques can improve your ability to use parts of the body that are affected by disease or injury. For example, arthritis is a long-term condition that causes painful and stiff joints. Physiotherapy can help to keep the joints mobile and strengthen the surrounding muscles.
By law only practitioners who are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (the regulatory body) are allowed to use the titles 'physiotherapist' and 'physical therapist'.
By using a number of different approaches and techniques, a physiotherapist can help a person overcome injury or short-term health problems, or manage long-term disability.
Who can physiotherapists help?
Physiotherapy can help people of all ages. In particular, physiotherapy can help rehabilitate (restore to health) people who have:
- Had a stroke, when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off
- Heart problems and breathing difficulties
- A sports injury
- Recently had surgery that affects their movement or mobility
Almost all people who have an injury or a physical disability can benefit from physiotherapy, including children and elderly people.
Click here for a list of all recognised bodies and qualifications.