manual therapy athletic advantage physical therapy

Manual Therapy for Effective Pain Relief

A Hands-On Approach: Effectively Treating Pain With Manual Therapy

Have you recently sustained an injury? Are you recovering from a surgical procedure? Is your illness or ailment causing you discomfort or preventing you from living your normal life? If so, you would likely benefit from manual therapy treatments.

When some first-time patients participate in physical therapy, they may think their treatments will be painful or uncomfortable, due to their painful condition. However, that is very rarely the case. Our physical therapists have several tools in their arsenal that are meant to relieve your pain, while simultaneously improving your body’s function. To learn more about how our manual therapy services can help you achieve relief and recovery, contact Athletic Advantage Physical Therapy today to schedule your appointment.

Manual therapy explained:

Manual therapy is a specialized treatment performed by licensed physical therapists. During this treatment, your physical therapist will manipulate joints and soft tissue with nothing more than their hands. There are hundreds of techniques that may be utilized, but your PT will design a specific plan of care and use techniques that are specific to your anatomical needs. Manual therapy is used as a way to relieve pain, reduce swelling, decrease restriction, improve range of motion, and mobilize joints.

How safe is manual therapy?

Very! Manual therapy is a non-invasive treatment option that doesn’t require any harmful pain-management medications. Your physical therapist will use a variety of techniques aimed at mobilizing soft tissue and joints in ways that facilitate pain relief and healing.

Our physical therapists are highly-trained medical professionals who understand both the capabilities and limitations of your body. While many of these skills are learned at all physical therapy schools, our PTs have had additional training in advanced manual therapy techniques.

How is manual therapy performed?

There are several different types of manual therapy. Some of the most common include, but are not limited to:

  • Manual Traction. Manual traction is done by applying gentle pressure to certain areas of the body, in order to provide a stretch. One of the most common areas to receive manual traction is the neck; however, your physical therapist may also recommend it for different areas of your body. When manual traction is performed as a treatment for neck pain or neurological symptoms in the upper extremities, your physical therapist will have you lie down on your back while they gently stretch the spaces between your vertebrae. This is done by taking the base of the skull in one hand and the chin in the other while applying slight pressure. This treatment in conjunction with additional manual therapy and strengthening interventions, has been correlated with decreased pain and dysfunction.
  • Soft Tissue Massage. Massage treatments performed by a physical therapist are a bit different than those you might receive at a spa. They are meant to be more therapeutic in nature, rather than relaxing. At Athletic Advantage Physical Therapy, we use therapeutic massage treatments as a way to manipulate the soft tissues. This is done through deep pressure and rhythmic stretching, allowing your physical therapist to find and mobilize areas of your body that are heavily restricted. By doing this, your physical therapist is also able to break up any scar tissue or adhesions in the affected body part(s).
  • Mobilization/Manipulation. Joint restrictions are very common and may be found anywhere throughout the body. These restrictions can occur for many reasons and in conjunction with limitations in surrounding soft tissues. Fortunately, our physical therapists are trained in loosening restricted joints by applying graded pressure at a low velocity. Mobilization and manipulation techniques are safe, effective, and painless. They also allow for a breakdown of the affected joint’s barrier, resulting in an improved range of motion. This is specifically helpful for individuals that have had a surgery or chronic pain that has restricted mobility over an extended period of time.

For more details contact our physical therapist at Allen, TX.