Manual therapy is an essential part of the treatment given by physiotherapist. It is given manually using physical forces. It is also a procedure to assess musculoskeletal conditions.
A physiotherapist is skillful about human body structures; it’s function and motions and is trained in performing manual therapy techniques on patients. After a thorough assessment, manual therapy is included in the treatment plan.
There are different forms of manual therapy where some are slow moving and soothing, whereas some are aggressive according to specific treatment needed to the body.
Types of manual therapy techniques
There are two types of techniques:
- Mobilization: the mobilization technique is low forces hands-on therapy techniques such as kneading, tapping, a stretch that is applied to the joints and surrounding soft tissues to relax, restore muscle functions and improve joint flexibility. Massage therapy, soft tissue mobilization, and trigger point release techniques are few examples.
- Manipulation: manual therapy is also known as manipulative therapy which are large forces techniques such as traction, bone setting, chiropractic, and spinal manipulation high-velocity forces applied to the joints to realign and improve its range of motion.
Effectiveness of manual therapy
The effectiveness of manual therapy depends on the efficient application for the indicated conditions by the physiotherapist. But not every patient with musculoskeletal pain requires manual therapy. Moreover, the therapy may differ from one individual to another, depending upon the conditions they are suffering.
- Gentle muscle stroking, kneading, and stretching may help relax your body, improve blood circulation, improve sleep, and immune system.
- Due to long working hours, the muscles may become tense and tired. Soft tissue mobilization over your neck and shoulder may help relax and restore its energy to keep you going.
- With moderate finger pressure on the swollen limb, moving in the upward direction may help fluid drainage, thus reduces swelling, and help prevent fluid accumulation in the limbs,
- Muscle stretching techniques may help release tension in the muscles, help restore muscle length and its function.
- When the joints are stiff and painful, joint gliding help break adhesions and improve joint range of motion.
- In case of poor posture or malalignment of the spine, manual therapy such as bone setting, chiropractic help align the bone and relieve pain.
Manual therapy is usually combined with physiotherapy exercises for a speedy recovery.
Manual therapy gives treatment to both your soft tissues and joints. It can treat a variety of musculoskeletal conditions.