Aquatic physiotherapy (also known as hydrotherapy) is an alternative way of doing physiotherapy that offers a range of benefits that are more difficult to achieve on land when undertaking rehabilitation. There are a small number of research studies completed, but they do support the improvements that can be made in the neurological population and in other populations such as people recovering from joint replacements.
The properties of the water offers the therapist ways to either promote relaxation and flexibility of a limb, or promote more activity and build up strength and stability within a body part depending on how the exercise is set up and progressed. The therapist will use a range of techniques and equipment to facilitate the best outcome for the stage of the condition that is being managed.
Specific issues can be addressed such as muscle weakness, joint contracture, spasticity and inco-ordination. Tasks can be modified to practice everyday activities in a safe, supported way such as sit- to stand, balance, use of arm and hand, and walking. The level of complexity of these tasks is gradually progressed in the water.
The warmth of the water and the graded pressure can be important to help manage painful conditions and extra fluid in limbs. Generally, the water enhances the overall feeling of well being and gives confidence feel movements that are difficult on land.
There are many conditions that benefit from treatment in the water including:
- Strokes, head injuries, spinal cord injuries
- Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson ’s disease
- Peripheral neuropathy, muscular dystrophies
- Cerebral palsy
- Post fall recovery and balance retraining to prevent further falls
- Chronic pain
- Joint replacements and reconstructions
- Spinal surgery
Water may not be the best place for everyone to use for therapy. We do need to do a screening assessment to check, understand your underlying health condition and the goals you are working toward. To get the best from your water therapy integration into land based exercises and movements is essential.
Neurospace is fortunate to have access to Hartley Hydrotherapy pool, which is usually around 34 degrees. We offer continuing therapy services at the pool, or intermittent treatment to set your own individualised program with reviews.
Feel free to make further inquiries with our reception team.