As health care has improved and people are living longer, many older adults are faced with age-related problems such as loss of balance, declining muscular strength, osteoporosis, arthritis and decreased mobility. Any of these can lead to functional impairments, which can impact quality of life and even determine an individual's ability to live independently in the community.
There are numerous assessment tools available to physical therapists to evaluate the function of older adults, including tests to measure strength, range of motion and flexibility, mobility and balance. This information is used by our therapists to develop an individualized treatment plan to address each client's specific problems, helping to improve their ability to perform common everyday activities and maintain an independent lifestyle.
Research has also demonstrated that physical therapy using manual therapy (joint and soft-tissue mobilization) combined with exercise can be effective in reducing the pain of hip and knee osteoarthritis (OA), which is very common among older adults. When therapy is initiated early for individuals with OA, it may be possible to decrease the use of pain medication, as well as reduce or delay the incidence of surgery!
At Performance Physical Therapy, our staff of highly trained therapists has the experience and skills to evaluate the physical function of older adults. Over the years, we have worked with thousands of older clients with a variety of physical problems, helping them return to a more active and rewarding lifestyle!