Article by: Haley Williams |
Aquatic physiotherapy (HYDROTHERAPY) is a specialized treatment that’s carried out while floating, partially submerged or fully submerged in a temperature-controlled pool, by a physiotherapist with a specialized training in rehabilitation in water.
The therapeutic benefits of hydrotherapy are helping physiotherapists meet patient needs, particularly those with severe mobility challenges on land, and improving physical function associated with pain, stiffness, weakness and balance due to illness, injury or disability. Aquatic physiotherapy has been an integral addition to the land-based services offered at Bankstown Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Centre by Jawad Azzi.
The practice assists patients with developmental delays and disabilities such as cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, down syndrome, autism and a myriad of other genetic or developmental conditions, to achieve their full potential.
Hydrotherapy sessions are facilitated by ensuring patients arrive early for their session, so they are ready to enter the pool on time. It is also important to have a spotter (a person who can assist in an emergency), at the side of the pool in case of an incident.
“The first session for any of our patients in the pool is always a safety session. We determine the best way for the patient to safely get in and out of the pool, and assess their water awareness and safety so that we can then tailor the therapy activities safely.”
“We love the opportunity it provides for our patients to be challenged in a fun and engaging way.”
“Many of our patients need to be hoisted into and out of the pool, and they need to be able to change into and out of their swimmers on an adult-sized change table.
“There is growing evidence across a range of areas for aquatic intervention including pulmonary rehab, heart failure, diabetes, mental health issues, pain management, particularly since the changes in codeine prescription, as well as more recognised areas such as arthritis, joint replacement rehab, neuro rehab, and antenatal care.”
The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) states that aquatic physiotherapy can be used as a treatment anywhere a pool is available and can be used to treat a multitude of conditions, including:
· Sports injuries
· Post-operative and orthopaedic conditions
· Spinal pain and/or injuries
· Neurological conditions
· Cardio-respiratory problems
· Balance dysfunction
· Women’s health complaints
· Arthritis and aged care
As a result, specialised training, including water and pool safety is essential for any physiotherapist looking to expand into aquatic services.
“You need to make sure your patients are safe because it is a riskier environment than working on the land. But otherwise it’s an excellent adjunct to what we provide in the clinic and the community, and it is worthwhile for our clients’ outcomes and satisfaction with their treatment,” said Ms Hayles.
If you would like to inquire for Hydrotherapy please call 9793 3119 or email us at Bankstownphysiotherapy@gmail.com