Benefits of Hydrotherapy
Hydrotherapy is a specific form of treatment that is used by physiotherapists in a heated pool. The pools are kept between 32-34 degrees Celsius and have rails along the side of them, often having stairs or a ramp for easy accessibility, whilst also usually being deeper at one end.
The buoyancy of the water helps relieve the stresses on joints in the body caused by gravity and the deeper someone is in the pool, the more buoyant the body is, which in turn reduces the forces on the joints.
For people with severe arthritis or fractured bones, and for those people who are obese, hydrotherapy is a brilliant form of treatment. The warm water helps with the circulation of the blood flow to the muscles and joints, helping to reduce swelling from sprains, bruises and even post surgery swelling. Warm water will help relax muscles as well and make it easier to stretch.
Hydrotherapy is also very beneficial for the elderly in retraining their balance and stability. They are able to test their balance and coordination right to their limits without the worry of falling and causing injury.
There is also specific resistance training, which can be facilitated by a physiotherapist, or physiotherapist assistant, that will help to improve muscle strength and flexibility in the joints.
I strongly believe that hydrotherapy is one of the best forms of treatments that a physiotherapist can provide in the early stages of recovery progressing towards land base exercises.