Manual Therapy – what is it?
Manual therapy is a hands-on technique that involves performing soft tissue massage and/or joint mobilization to increase or restore flexibility, function, and range of motion. This is very similar to massage therapy. Our physical therapists have thousands of combined hours of experience with manual therapy techniques. This type of therapy allows us to feel the difference between joints and how they move, tissue quality, and if there is any presence of edema or swelling. We then have a better ability to diagnose injuries and understand what is happening beneath the skin and surrounding areas. We can work to improve flexibility, reduce inflammation, and restore motion so that our bodies can move in optimal patterns and motions. We also have instruments that can provide a more vibration type of massage as an option as well.
There are many types of massage we can apply depending on what is needed, level of tolerability, and what is comfortable for you. The most common types are:
1. Effleurage (light or deep stroking)
2. Petrissage (kneading)
3. Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
Is this appropriate for me?
Just because there are many options doesn’t mean each one is appropriate for each patient. For example, if someone is coming in who recently had a knee replacement surgery, a deep massage technique wouldn’t be the most comfortable or appropriate choice for them. We would start with more of a gentle massage like effleurage in order to decrease swelling in the area, and eventually move towards light friction massage to reduce scar tissue build up under the incision and progress towards a kneading technique in order to maintain proper mobility. The beauty of manual therapy is the ability to adjust the pressure, type, and time it is performed depending on how comfortable the patient is and what would be most beneficial for them. Joint distraction is also a type of manual therapy that can help provide pain relief due to taking pressure off each bone involved and any nerves that could be involved and causing some pain. The manual therapy Bellevue has to offer can also be used to “wake up a muscle” that may have been affected by injury, surgery, or other causes that just needs some help with reactivation in order to get stronger. Manual therapy should never be super painful and will oftentimes be very pleasurable.
Do I only receive manual therapy at my visit?
Once the manual therapy is performed, we will move towards performing exercise. With the newly gained range of motion and decreased pain we achieved through manual therapy, we will gain better performance with exercise. Generally, manual physical therapy Bellevue will eventually decrease over time once muscle strength and function has been restored correctly. Don’t get us wrong, we all appreciate a massage but we have to keep in mind what is the most beneficial for rehabbing after an injury, which is to combine both manual therapy and therapeutic exercise to best support the body in recovery. We will work through a program that is adapted to your specific needs in order to achieve functional movements that are applicable to your specific therapy goals.
Why should I choose HIDEF?
At HIDEF, we have multiple experienced clinicians who have performed manual physical therapy Bellevue on many different patients. We are also willing to adapt to each patient’s needs; we have both males and females on staff in case this is a concern for your care. We are willing to work with different religious beliefs and needs, personal preferences, and draping techniques that will provide the utmost respect for each patient. When you arrive for your evaluation, we will continuously ask what you are comfortable with and can answer any questions you may have in order to provide the best relationship. We look forward to working with patients of all needs, whether it be a sports injury, post-op surgical, or anything in between and we hope to have the chance to work with you! If you are looking for a manual therapy Bellevue clinic call to schedule an appointment today!