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Losing a limb is a devastating blow for anyone. It requires a team of professionals to make the adjustment to life without the limb. A physician, a prosthetist, nurses, and a psychologist are all needed. Add to that list a physiotherapy service, which will help with amputee rehabilitation.
The benefits of physiotherapy for amputee rehabilitation are numerous. For one, amputees will need help in overcoming phantom pains. These are pains where the limb used to be. The sensation really is in the nerve that would lead to that limb if it were still there. Physiotherapy can use its own techniques to treat this pain.
Most amputees will be getting a prosthetic limb. Some feel that it should be enough to learn how to put it on. It is not an automatic thing to get used to a prosthetic limb. Many patients have them for years without ever having normal functioning with them. This is one reason amputee rehabilitation is so important.
Physiotherapy can benefit amputee rehabilitation by gradually getting the patient accustomed to using a prosthetic limb. The physiotherapy plan for this will be based upon the needs and abilities of the patient.
The patient will probably need help during amputee rehabilitation to learn balance all over again. This is especially true is the affected limb is a foot or leg. However, having an arm that is of a different weight than the other may be unbalancing as well. Physiotherapy can help with these problems too.
One thing people going through amputee rehabilitation need to realize is that gait is a good deal of the battle. If one walks correctly, people will not even be able to detect one’s limp, even with a prosthetic leg. This skill can be learned from physiotherapists.
If a patient has waited a long while before seeking physiotherapy after surgery, a problem may arise. Certain muscles may become overdeveloped and others weakened. This happens because, without proper amputee rehabilitation, the patient relies on one set of muscles to the exclusion of others. A proper plan of physiotherapy can address this issue.
People who have lost a limb will need an individualized exercise program. Physiotherapy can provide such a program during amputee rehabilitation. This will take into account the different movements needed by amputees to perform normal exercises.
Manual therapies, such as massage, are a part of amputee rehabilitation with physiotherapy. This can relieve much pain and tension in the muscles that are overworked in getting used to their new situation. Other treatments can be used. Some of them are heat, acupuncture, ultrasound, and electrical stimulation.
There is a need for physiotherapy in amputee rehabilitation that no other discipline can fill. It is a basic kind of help that anyone who has lost a limb can use. Some amputees decline treatment because they do not think it is necessary. Others feel overwhelmed by their loss. If there is a way to convince amputees to get physiotherapy to help them with their rehabilitation, they will find recovery a much smoother path.