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Role of physiotherapy in geriatrics

Role of physiotherapy in geriatrics


Geriatric physiotherapy is the branch of physiotherapy that relates to the care of older adults. A physiotherapist has a key role in enabling older people to maximise their bodies potential to enhance mobility and independence. The aim of geriatric physiotherapy is to improve a patient’s quality of life and prolong independence and physical well-being.

Many conditions can affect the geriatric population such as an ankle sprain to lower back pain but also age related problems including joint pain, arthritis or osteoporosis. You may also have co-morbidities such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancer, heart disease that will also have an impact on your health. It is well know that poor physical conditioning in older adults can lead to health problems such as stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, respiratory, circulatory problems. Geriatric physiotherapy is wide and encompassing of all conditions that may affect an older adult.

Moreover, as we age our muscle mass reduces in a process called sarcopenia, which is age-related muscle reduction. We may feel increasing frailty or just feel less able to carry out day to day tasks. Sarcopenia affects our strength, endurance and co-ordination. On the bright side exercise can help counter the effects of age-related muscle loss. Falls is also an issue that becomes more prevalent as we age. There are many factors that may be contributing to this and your physiotherapist will assess you to get to the root of the underlying issues.

How we can help our geriatric population

Physiotherapy is a key component in geriatric medicine. Your physical well-being may be impacted on by different health problems and we would like to help.

Your physiotherapist will carry out a thorough assessment of the issue you present with, taking into account your past medical history and how other conditions may impact on this problem. Things like your walking pattern, ability to get up and down from a chair, on and off a bed will all be assessed. Also some balance tests will be conducted to get a baseline for your current balance levels. Your treatment will be completely individualised to suit your needs. From your assessment, key areas will be highlighted and your treatment will aim to improve these issues. Goal setting will also be done

In the clinic we have exercise classes called Stronger for Longer and Healthy Bones. Both classes are targeted for older adults and aim to improve strength, balance and co-ordination. If you are interested in any of these classes please contact the clinic today to get your free trial.

Here at Ballsbridge Physiotherapy Clinic we also offer home visits for patients that are unable to attend the clinic. Our senior Physiotherapist Vivian Hanrahan has many years of experience as a physiotherapist and working with geriatric patients.

If you would like any more information on the treatment or classes we offer please do not hesitate to contact the clinic today on (01) 660 6582 or check out our website.

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