Osteoarthritis: How physical therapy can help ease the pain

Leg Pain

Are you suffering from osteoarthritis (OA) in your knee, hip or shoulder? Many of our patients come to us with symptoms of this common degenerative disease including pain and stiffness in and around the affected joint and reduced mobility in the body. Sadly, there is no known cure for osteoarthritis other than surgery.

However, the good news is that with the help of physical therapy, your quality of life can be significantly improved. Treatments such as osteopathy, chiropractic care, physiotherapy and massage can achieve a great deal in alleviating chronic OA symptoms, improving joint function and slowing down disease progression.

Here at The Health Hub, we have a team of experienced therapists for various physical treatment disciplines, including physiotherapy, chiropractic, osteopathy, sports massage, massage and Pilates. Our highly qualified and skilled physical therapists can help you to:

Manage your OA pain

Common areas of Osteoarthritis are the knee and hip joint, which causes the protective cartilage around the joint to wear away, resulting in painful bone-on-bone friction. Physical therapy can be used to reduce inflammation around the affected joint, promote blood circulation and release endorphins, the body’s natural painkilling chemicals. Some of the manual techniques used by our physiotherapists including acupuncture, osteopaths and chiropractors may give immediate relief, while targeted physiotherapy exercises are designed to strengthen supporting muscles and stabilise the joint, providing long-term benefits.

Increase joint mobility

Osteoarthritis can make your knee, hip or shoulder stiff, leading to a reduced range of motion in addition to painful movements. You may have trouble walking or climbing stairs, getting up from a low chair or lifting your arm. Our physical therapists employ joint mobilisation, soft tissue manipulation and acupuncture, directed at improving the mobility and function of your knee, hip or shoulder joint. We will often compliment this, with Physiotherapy exercises that will help to keep your joints as flexible and strong as possible to slow down the rate of degeneration.

Back Pain Hero

Improve your balance

Lower body OA sufferers (hips, knees, ankles and feet) may have problems with impaired balance, largely as a result of decreased joint function, mobility and muscle weakness which can lead to instability and a greater risk of falls. Our skilled physical therapists can add balance components to functional strengthening treatment, for instance by using different walking distances and elevation, and changes in terrain, to simulate daily tasks and improve your balance.

Work on your posture

Did you know that a poor body posture – the incorrect alignment and positioning of your body – can add extra stress to your arthritic joints? You may not even be aware of your posture, but a good physical therapist can show you simple ways to adjust the way you sit, stand and walk to improve your posture and take the stress off your joints. Your therapist may also suggest simple modifications you can make to your environment, whether at home, at work or even in your car, to help make your daily life easier.

Slow down OA progression

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition, meaning it is likely to get worse over time. That said, there is much that can be done with physical therapy to slow down the rate of decline. Our therapists will work to promote joint health, reduce inflammation and provide additional muscular strength, all of which help to minimise the wear and tear on the joint. With good physical therapy outcomes, you may be able to postpone the need for surgical interventions such as knee or hip replacements.

Contact Us

If you are living with chronic osteoarthritis, rest assured that there are treatment options available to help you feel better and lead a more comfortable and active life. The Health Hub team have a wealth of physical therapy expertise, giving you access to the best available care. As a one-stop-shop for your wellness, treatment and rehab requirements, we offer personalised treatment plans to suit your individual requirements. Contact our friendly, welcoming clinic to make an appointment or book online here.