“Today was my last day for my treatment on my left arm. The pain I was in from the torn rotator cuff has been relieved. The staff and Dr Lemoine were very pleasant. I would recommend them to my friends.”
If you are suffering from an injury, surgical procedure, or medical condition, manual therapy may be for you. Physical therapists have a variety of treatment options they can offer patients. Manual therapy is one of the most common.Manual therapy offers double benefits, not only promoting healing of the affected area but also provides relaxation to the tissues in the surrounding areas. A physical therapist uses a hands-on method to improve a patient’s soft tissue and joint restrictions, as well as alleviate pain in the musculoskeletal system. This is accomplished by using passive joint and hand movements to improve the patient’s range of motion, improve inflammation and swelling, and ease up on restrictions the patient has that hamper their ability to engage in day-to-day activities.
Manual Therapy Benefits
There have been multiple studies that confirm the excellent results that manual therapy yields when combined with a course of exercises developed by a physical therapist specifically for the patient.
Some of the benefits of manual therapy include:
- Decreases patient’s sensitivity and pain
- Flexibility improvement
- Joint mobility improvement
- Motor control improvement
- Motor recruitment improvement
- Overall function improvement
- Quality of movement improvement
- Reduction in muscle spasms
- Reduction in muscle tension
- Reduction of pain
There are other important benefits to manual therapy that many patients find comforting. First of all, this therapy is not only safe, but it is also painless and non-invasive. There are also no harmful medications that you have to wait to see if they will work and no frustrating or even dangerous side effects.
Even better, most patients see improvement in their condition after just one session of manual therapy.
Types of Manual Therapy Techniques
Manual therapy is a hands-on treatment by clinicians to treat muscle aches, joint pain, and limited range of motion. It encompasses a variety of techniques including soft tissue mobilization of muscles, specific joint mobilization, and joint manipulation.The three most notable forms of manual therapy are:
- Manipulation is the application of a rapid force into a joint(s). Manipulation is often associated with an audible popping sound called cavitation. It is usually used on the arms, legs, neck, and back. During this type of manual therapy, the physical therapist will gently apply strength to a certain part of the patient’s body. This slight pressure gently stretches the soft tissues in the area. This helps brings the tissues back to normal.
- Mobilization is a slower, more controlled process of articular and soft-tissue stretching intended to improve joint mobility. Mobilizations are painless and secure, enabling the patient’s range of motion to gradually increase. Mobilization is often used when the patient is suffering from a restricted joint (usually causing intense pain with injury).
- Soft tissue massage is typically the repetitive rubbing, stripping, or kneading of muscle and fascia tissues to facilitate healing – nothing like the kind of massages you would get at a spa. Soft tissue massages by a physical therapist are geared towards breaking up scar tissue and adhesions that are a result of an injury or any type of inflammation. This method of manual therapy also helps to increase the patient’s blood supply and circulation, which is especially beneficial to the healing of the affected soft tissue and muscles.
More specific methods include:
- Soft Tissue Mobilization
- Joint Mobilization
- Muscle Energy Techniques
- Passive Range of Motion
- Myofascial Release
Manual therapy has been proven to be an important part of an overall conservative treatment plan for a variety of conditions including:
- Adhesive Capsulitis
- Shoulder Impingement
- Shoulder Stiffness/Limited Range of Motion
- Tennis Elbow (Lateral Epicondylitis)
- Golfers Elbow (Medial Epicondylitis)
- Pinched Nerves
- Limited Joint Range of Motion
- Capsule Tightness
- Postsurgical Stiffness
- Much More
Manual therapy is typically part of a complete treatment plan that is customized for your specific needs. Give us a call to learn how we can incorporate manual therapy into your rehabilitation program.
Contact Our Clinic Today
If you are having issues with joint or tissue pain, have suffered an injury, or dealing with a condition that a physical therapist can help with, contact LeMoine Physical Therapy to schedule a consultation with one of our dedicated physical therapists and find out if manual therapy would be a good treatment option for you. Call our office today.