12 Nov TelePT for Osteoarthritis
If you have Osteoarthritis (OA), you probably have enough pain sometimes that you don’t want to move at all. One thing every patient with OA should remember is that the best solution for OA is movement. Movement improves blood flow, increases mobility, and strengthens muscles. Unfortunately, many patients with OA instinctively decrease their activity in response to pain.
Patients with OA often present with very distinct signs. By definition, an arthritic joint will be inflamed. A patient with arthritis in the knee will have a bulbous, or larger than normal knee. There will be decreased movement (ROM) at the affected joint. That same knee might not straighten all the way and probably won’t bend much beyond 90 degrees. Lastly, the muscles that control the movement of the joint will often be weak. Quadriceps, hamstrings, and calf muscles are the primary suspects with knee OA. Hip and core muscles are also usually weaker than normal. As a result, people with OA experience pain in the affected joint and have a difficult time performing normal daily activities.
Do these symptoms sound familiar to you? You say you need help with inflammation, ROM, and strength…..then a PT is the right person for the job. We are the experts at decreasing inflammation, increasing ROM, and strengthening muscles, especially with patients who have OA.
Patients with Osteoarthritis are ideal candidates for Telehealth Physical Therapy. Treatment does not typically require extensive manual therapy and the most effective interventions for arthritis involve movement and exercises that can be performed at home. After a thorough Physical Therapy evaluation, a typical program involves the following:
Education on reducing inflammation from Osteoarthritis:
- Heat and cold modalities – ice and heat are both every effective short-term solutions
- Self-guided manual techniques – much easier than you might imagine
- Movement – safe, progressive activities to increase blood flow and lubricate stiff joints
We help you restore movement with:
- Gentle soft tissue techniques – we have lots of ideas and tricks for you to get to those elusive knots and tight spots
- Stretching – elongating shortened muscles relieves pressure on stiff joints
- Active Range of Motion exercises – reinforce mobility
Strengthening the muscles that move and support your arthritic joint using:
- Non-weight bearing exercises for strengthening with with minimal force on your joints
- Weight bearing exercise to activate multiple muscle groups for greater overall strength
- Functional activities like squats and stairs to safely simulate real life challenges
We treat a large number of patients with Arthritis. We realize that our role is not to cure OA. That’s not likely to happen. Our objective is to assist our patients who have OA by reducing pain and restoring function. Our Telehealth Physical Therapists get the opportunity to work very closely with you to achieve your objectives. After several sessions, when you’ve achieved your goals, the next phase of OA management begins. Now you simply need to continue doing the exercises prescribed by your PT. If you have OA, remember that the best thing you can do is move. TelePT can help you do that and get you back on track to a normal pain-free life.