What is the issue?

As a person ages, our body goes through many physical changes, this is a natural part of the ageing process. Bone density reduces, muscle strength reduces, body fat increases and coordination is affected. Joints also start to stiffen over time. These normal effects of ageing are can have an effect on older persons mobility and balance which can, in turn, make them more likely to fall or avoid movement.

Older people can also be more susceptible to other illnesses such as heart disease and hypertension, diabetes and lung diseases such as COPD. These conditions can have more of an impact on the older person and can affect their daily activities and increase their dependence on others.

How can Physiotherapy Help?

While physiotherapy cannot stop ageing, it can reduce the impact that ageing has on our bodies and lives. As a physiotherapist, I will identify factors that are preventing the older person to carry out their day to day activities to their full and create a treatment plan that will assist with developing their independence and increasing their activity levels. In fact, physiotherapy has been shown to improve many of the factors associated with ageing including strength, balance, coordination, flexibility and pain levels. Ultimately physiotherapy has been proven by research to help older adults to maintain their health, well-being, functional ability and independence.

Physiotherapists can provide advice on how to safely exercise so that older people can realise the benefits of exercise. Exercise can also help to reduce the risk and impact of illnesses that are more likely to affect older people. Research also shows how effective physiotherapists are at treating and preventing joint problems, balance disorders, the risk of falls, strength decline and reducing high blood pressure and obesity.

If you decide that you could benefit from physiotherapy your physiotherapist should start by carrying out a detailed assessment to determine the specific areas that may be having an impact you. This assessment would typically include looking at your strength, range of movement, balance and walking.

Together you and your physiotherapist will set specific goals to help you address the areas that are difficult for you. They will then use this information to design a tailor-made programme.

Physiotherapy interventions that are proven to be effective for older people include stretching and strengthening exercise programmes and practising activities that challenge balance.

An excellent resource can be found here for falls prevention https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/health-wellbeing/fitness/falls-prevention/

To arrange an appointment contact Craig on 07730783128 or via info@vitaphysiotherapy.co.uk