Yes. Physical therapy can not only alleviate your joint pain, but substantially improve quality of life whether you’re an elite-level athlete recovering from an injury or an older individual experiencing joint pain with routine activities of daily living.
People suffering with arthritis often limit their physical activities in a misguided attempt to reduce their pain. But not moving the joint causes degenerative changes that further worsen pain and stiffness. The goal of physical therapy is to improve your mobility and joint function to the point that you can return to your active lifestyle without experiencing pain.
Depending on the cause and severity of your joint pain, your physical therapist will put together an exercise program that is designed to improve joint range of motion as well as strengthen your muscles to better stabilize and support the joint. You will also learn how to protect your joints when performing everyday activities such as getting in and out of a car, climbing stairs, or lifting objects. Your therapist may also recommend assistive devices that are designed to reduce joint stress and make your activities easier.
Apart from learning special exercises to help you move efficiently, other modalities of physical therapy include massage therapy, heat and cold therapy, and TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) therapy which can effectively alleviate your joint pain.
Furthermore, physical therapy can help reduce your need for pain medication when dealing with chronic pain and may delay or put off the need for more invasive treatment such as joint replacement surgery. Even when joint surgery is inevitable, physical therapy is always an indispensable part of your post-surgical recovery.
If you have been suffering from chronic joint pain and stiffness that is preventing you from doing the things you enjoy, visit your doctor or a qualified medical professional to find out about how you may benefit from physical therapy.