Physiotherapy is a rehabilitation profession with a presence in all health care delivery streams in Canada: hospitals, long-term care facilities, home care, community-based clinics, schools, private practice clinics and primary care networks. In all provinces, physiotherapists are registered to practice with their corresponding provincial regulatory College.
While physicians are referred to as MDs and nurses as RNs, physiotherapists or physical therapists are often referred to as PTs. The professional titles for this leading rehabilitation health care professional are physiotherapist or physical therapist.
Physiotherapy is a drug-free health care practice. Physiotherapists work in partnership with individuals of all ages to break down the barriers to physical function whether that means working with patients pre and post surgery, helping people come back from illness and chronic disease, injury, industrial and motor vehicle accidents and age related conditions. Physiotherapists also play an important role in health promotion and disease prevention. Physiotherapy is the treatment of preference for many who suffer from pain whether in the back or neck, or joint pain such as hips, knees, ankles, wrists, elbows or shoulders.
Physiotherapy has proven to be effective in the treatment and management of arthritis, diabetes, stroke and traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury and a range of respiratory conditions offering those afflicted with tools and techniques to acquire and maintain an optimum level of function and pain free living.
What is a Physiotherapist
A physiotherapist is a university educated health professional and a recognized member of your health care team.
Physiotherapists work in many areas including: cardio-respiratory, orthopedics, neurology, paediatrics, women’s health, seniors’ health, and sports.
When you see a physiotherapist, he or she will complete an extensive assessment that may include your health history, evaluation of pain and movement patterns, strength, joint range of motion, reflexes, sensation and cardio-respiratory status. In addition, the physiotherapist examines relevant x-rays, laboratory tests, medical records and surgical notes. Based on this assessment the physiotherapist establishes a diagnosis and works in partnership with you to develop individualized goals and treatment programs.
Physiotherapy treatment can include therapeutic exercises, manual therapy, acupuncture, electrical modalities such as TENS or ultrasound, and work hardening. A physiotherapist promotes independence. Emphasis is placed on what you can do for yourself and on education to prevent future injuries or disability.
Physiotherapy can make a difference in an individual’s ability to live an active, healthy lifestyle. For many seniors, disabled or chronically ill people, physiotherapy is the key to restoring and maintaining a level of physical function that permits independent living. Physiotherapy is one way to successfully push physical limitations to secure the Freedom to Function.
Physiotherapy benefits include decreasing pain, improving joint mobility, increasing strength and coordination and improved cardio-respiratory function. Everyone can benefit from physiotherapy whether you are living with a chronic illness, recovering from a work injury or suffering after that weekend hockey game.
Physiotherapy increases your independence and gives you the Freedom to Function™ in your home, workplace or your favorite leisure activity. Physiotherapy offers a range of specialized services of benefit to patients with heart and lung disease, traumatic, workplace and athletic injuries, amputations, arthritic joints, stroke, brain injury, spinal cord and nerve injury, cancer and pre and post surgical needs.