Physiotherapy fall prevention tips for Seniors

During the winter months, especially, more than 1 in 3 elderly Canadians (ages 65 and older) are more prone to falling, according to the Canadian Association of Physiotherapy (CPA). It’s estimated that 50% of those who fall will suffer from moderate to severe injuries (sprains, hip fractures, or head traumas) that can permanently reduce their mobility and independence.

In the CPA’s article, “Preventing Falls: Physiotherapists Provide Tips for Seniors”, more than 90% of incidents that result in injuries are predictable and preventable. Studies show that modifying the home and reducing hazards in the community, such as proper snow and ice removal in the winter months, can reduce the risk of falls by half.

When these falls occur however, even when preventative measures have been taken, physiotherapists (PTs) can help. PTs not only treat injuries, they also teach you how to prevent the onset of pain or injury that can limit your ability. A PT can help evaluate the home environment to identify ways to prevent unnecessary accidents.

Due to the fear of falling, there are many seniors that imprison themselves in their homes. By doing this, they lose the physical benefits of normal activities and may compromise balance and muscle strength, putting themselves at even greater risk of falling, even at home. A targeted physiotherapy treatment program can help maintain or regain strength, flexibility, and endurance in a way that still feels safe and secure.

A PT can develop a treatment program based on the seniors’ medical history in order to maintain or regain strength, flexibility, and endurance in a way that still feels safe and secure. The PT will determine a general physical condition and will conduct a series of tests specifically designed to measure strength, flexibility, balance and walking. After determining any limitations, a program of exercises and activities will be prescribed with an overall goal of improving physical function.

To learn more about preventing falls and how physiotherapy can help with the prevention, check out the full article from the Canadian Physiotherapy Association.

To book an appointment with one of our skilled PTs, contact our friendly staff by email or call 403.556.9911.

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We now offer Direct Billing!

Speers Health Clinics is proud to offer Direct Billing to insurance companies for our valued customers through TELUS Health eClaims.

Here is a list of the participating insurance companies offered through this service:

  • Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan
  • CINUP
  • Cowan Insurance Group
  • Desjardins Insurance
  • First Canadian
  • Great-West Life
  • Industrial Alliance
  • Johnson Inc.
  • Johnston Group
  • Manion
  • Manulife
  • Maximum Benefit
  • Sun Life Financial

To learn more, or to book an appointment with one of our skilled physiotherapists, contact our friendly staff by email or at 403.556.9911.

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SHC offers new service – Dry Needling

Speers Health Clinics (SHC) has added a new service performed by one of our physiotherapists. The service is Trigger Point Dry Needling (TDN) or Dry Needling.

What is TDN/Dry Needling and who performs it?
TDN or Dry Needling is a modern form of acupuncture that involves placing a small filament needle into the muscle at the trigger point which is typically in an area where the muscle is tight and tender. The intent of TDN is to normalize the muscle tone, therefore improving the mobility of the muscle and decreasing the symptoms. Dry Needling is performed by a licensed physiotherapist who has received additional training in this technique and uses modern research based on neuroanatomy. TDN is virtually pain-free and is often effective treatment for myofascial pain. Myofascial pain can be a component of many conditions, including joint problems and soft tissue pathologies. TDN/Dry Needling can be powerful adjunctive treatment with physiotherapy.

What other treatments performed by a physiotherapist will accompany TDN/Dry Needling?
The physiotherapist will also address biomechanical muscle imbalances, postural dysfunctions, muscular flexibility limitation, strength deficits, and swollen or stiff joints. The physiotherapy treatment may include joint mobilization, a carefully designed therapeutic exercise plan, and advanced hands-on therapy techniques. These will help restore a patient’s optimal physical function to assist them in returning to an active pain-free lifestyle.

What conditions has TDN/Dry Needling shown to help combined with physiotherapy treatment?
1) Acute and chronic tendonitis
2) Athletic and sports-related overuse injuries
3) Post-surgical pain
4) Post-traumatic injuries, motor vehicle collisions, and work-related injuries
5) Chronic pain conditions
6) Headaches and whiplash
7) Lower back pain
8) Neuropathies
9) Bursitis

Is TDN/Dry Needling painful?
Dry Needling involves multiple advances of a filament needle into the muscle in the region of a “Trigger Point’. The aim of Dry Needling is to achieve a local twitch response to release muscle tension and pain. Dry needling is an effective treatment for chronic pain of neuropathic origin with very few side effects.

Is TDN/Dry Needling safe and effective?
While the name of the procedure may sound intimidating, dry needling is safe, minimally discomforting and often an effective technique for patients with certain musculoskeletal presentations.

Is there a difference between Acupuncture and Dry Needling?
The true technique and medicine of acupuncture is not applied through dry needling because dry needling is just the process of inserting a needle in an area of pain. Also, “dry needling” only targets pain, whereas acupuncture treats a wide range of ailments including pain.

How long does it take for TDN/Dry Needling to work?
In many cases, improved mobility and decreased pain can be immediate, and in combination with a well-rounded physiotherapy treatment plan, can have lasting effects. The number of treatment sessions will vary depending on the needs of each individual client as determined by the physiotherapist.

Where is this service offered and by whom?
Our skilled and experienced physiotherapist at SHC, Loida Mata recently completed the Trigger Point Dry Needling course and is certified to perform dry needling as part of her physiotherapy treatment services.

Contact our friendly staff by email or call 403.556.9911 to set up an appointment with Loida.
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Can physiotherapy help you?

As described by the Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA), physiotherapists are primary health care professionals who combine their in-depth knowledge of the body and how it works with specialized hands-on clinical skills to assess, diagnose and treat symptoms of illness, injury or disability.

Most people who go to see a physiotherapist are in some type of pain, which can vary. If you need to move better, recover, or there’s something you want to do but can’t do because you have a restriction, physiotherapy can help.

At Speers Health Clinics, we currently have two very skilled and experienced physiotherapists that will work with you to help you return to your active pain-free lifestyle. Contact our office by email or at 403.556.9911 to book an appointment.

If you want to learn more about how a physiotherapist can help, check out the full article, “Why Physiotherapy” on the CPA website.

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