Rehabilitation Q & A
Who Needs Rehabilitation?
Although the idea of rehabilitation after a broken bone or joint surgery may be the first thing that springs to mind, you might not realize rehabilitation goes beyond these to encompass other medical conditions. Neck or back surgery, for example, can result in physical limitations or pain that can be helped with rehabilitation. A soft tissue injury can cause muscle pain and stiffness, limiting the ability to walk or move. Rehabilitation can help with all of these conditions. Someone who has had a stroke might also benefit from our rehabilitation services, especially if the stroke affects mobility. “Prehabilitation” -- preparing for a scheduled surgery with exercise and strengthening techniques -- can also be helpful in many cases.
What are the Goals of Rehabilitation?
Rehabilitation has two major goals. One of the most important is pain relief. It's very difficult to exercise and regain strength when you're hurting. Gently stretching muscles can improve flexibility, which decreases muscle spasms and can reduce pain. Putting a joint through range-of-motion ("ROM") exercises also helps maintain or improve flexibility. Exercises can strengthen muscles and improve circulation, which helps damaged tissues heal. Massage helps muscles relax, which makes it easier to exercise and decreases pain. The second major goal is the strengthen the body so it can handle the demands placed on it during recovery and daily living.
What Does Rehabilitation Include?
Rehabilitation can encompass a variety of techniques. For example, massage therapy helps relieve muscle tension and stiffness, which decreases pain and makes it easier to exercise. A chiropractic adjustment ensures that your body is in proper alignment, which reduces stress on muscles and joints. Part of rehabilitation is to teach you how to use your body correctly, to prevent new injuries and promote good posture, which helps relieve pain. Stretching and strengthening exercises help you heal and regain function. When all of these techniques are combined, there is a synergistic effect that promotes healing and wellness.