Treatments

Your treatment plan can involve a number of techniques which are aimed at providing pain relief and restoring function.  For further information on each treatment modality please see below:

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a safe and effective way of providing pain relief, there is a growing body of evidence which shows that it is effective in stimulating endorphins (natural pain killers) in the body, relieving muscle tension and stimulating the natural healing process all of which help to restore normal function and movement.  I have over 8 yrs experience in using acupuncture on a wide range of pathologies and have had work published in Acupuncture in Medicine Journal (2010).

Manual therapy / Manipultion

Joints can often stiffen up especially after injury or if you are in pain.  In addition, stiffness in these joints can itself lead to pain and aching due to lack of synovial fluid (the joints natural lubrication) which nourishes the joint cartilage.  If a joint remains stiff for too long then this can predispose the joint to develop premature arthritic changes.

Joint stiffness can led to compensatory body movement which can have a negative effect on the surrounding joints, muscles and ligaments. Often this compensatory movement can lead to further injury or pain due to overuse of specific joints or added tension in the muscles.

Gentle joint mobilisation techniques can be applied to restore normal movement of your stiff, achy joints. In cases where joints are very stiff a manipulation may be required. This is where the joint is carefully positioned and gently thrust by the therapist to restore full movement. Often the patient will feel or hear a small pop or click as the joint is manipulated. Mobilisations and manipulations are safe techniques.

Exercise therapy

Exercise is an essential component of your rehabilitation and return to normal function, it is typically used in combination with other physiotherapy treatments to speed up your recovery and to prevent the reoccurrence of your injury and pain.

You will be prescribed an individual exercise protocol to help speed up your healing process, correct faulty biomechanics and restore your normal movement.  By doing this you will be able to self manage your symptoms by preforming your exercises and prevent then need for further physiotherapy in future.

Extensive research has shown that in cases of low back pain that the deep postural muscles may not return to normal function and strength despite the resolution of pain.  In some cases this resolution of pain is only short-term and requires longer term progressive exercises to prevent re-injury.  Evidence has shown that exercise focusing on strengthening the core muscles can prevent low back pain from re-occurring.  I am pilates trained and use pilates based exercises to prevent further low back pain, I have also developed and managed individual and group core stability classes within the NHS and private sector for this condition.

Advice and Lifestyle Management

At the initial assessment you will be advised on the diagnosis to your problem, given an estimation of how many sessions are required and advice on how to self manage your condition.

By following this advice you will accelerate natural healing processes thus ensuring you get better in the minimum number of treatment sessions possible.  All advice given to you will be evidence based and follow national guidelines.  I can also provide simple ergonomic advice and am happy to liaise with your employer regarding optimum seating and other measures that may be required to aid your recovery.  If required I can liaise with you GP to help with graded return to work programs.

Electrotherapy

Ultrasound is a form of electrotherapy.  Research has demonstrated that ultrasound can be used in the acute stages of injuries to help accelerate healing processes, however it is only useful when injured tissue is inflamed (hot, swollen and red) which is generally only within the first two-to-three weeks post injury. After this stage ultrasound is not particularly effective, at this point in your rehabilitation alternative treatment modalities will be used to help relieve pain and restore function.

Soft tissue and deep tissue massage

Massage therapy is a soft tissue technique that is used to stimulate or relax muscles.

Benefits of Massage Therapy:

  • Releases excessive muscle tension
  • Speeds up recovery after injury
  • Improves muscle performance and body posture
  • Helps in early recognition of potential problems thus preventing injury
  • Increases joints range of motion and muscles flexibility
  • Promotes pain relief in those with sciatica, back pain and muscle aches
  • Brings general mental and physical relaxation and higher level of energy
  • Stimulates mental alertness, brighter thinking and positive attitude

Taping

In the acute stages of injury the combination of protection, relative rest, ice, compression, elevation, and support (PRICES) is used.  Support provided in the form of taping around the damaged tissue can ensure that the damaged tissue heals in the correct position.  Failure to abide by this early management can lead to chronic problems.