As winter approaches, people living with arthritis may experience an increase in symptoms due to the colder weather. Arthritis is a chronic disease that affects millions of people worldwide and can cause inflammation and pain in one or more joints. Fortunately, physiotherapy can be a helpful treatment option for managing arthritis symptoms.
Physiotherapy offers several techniques that can benefit people living with arthritis, such as exercise therapy, manual therapy, education, and advice.
Exercise therapy is a type of physiotherapy that focuses on physical activity to manage pain, improve joint flexibility, and increase muscle strength. Aerobic exercise, such as walking, cycling, and swimming, can help improve cardiovascular fitness, while strengthening exercises can help protect the joints.
Manual therapy involves the use of manual techniques such as massage, joint mobilisation, and manipulation to alleviate pain. It also reduces inflammation, and improve joint function. Manual therapy can be particularly useful for people living with osteoarthritis (OA) or rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who often experience joint stiffness and pain, limiting their mobility and overall function.
Physiotherapists can also provide education and advice to people living with arthritis, offering information on joint protection techniques, exercise modification, and self-management strategies such as weight management.
Research has shown that physiotherapy can have potential benefits for people living with arthritis. Studies have found that physiotherapy can improve pain, function, and quality of life in people living with RA. It has also been found that people with knee OA who received physiotherapy experienced significant improvements in pain, physical function, and walking distance compared to those who did not receive physiotherapy.
Arthritis can be a challenging condition to manage, especially during the winter season when symptoms may flare up. However, physiotherapy is a non-invasive and effective treatment option that can help reduce pain, improve joint function, and increase physical capacity for people living with arthritis. If you’re looking for a way to manage your arthritis symptoms, Morgan and our team of physiotherapists at Physio and Fitness Clinic can help you.