Both our licensed physical therapists have doctorates in physical therapy, decades of experience, and both are current professors in physical therapy at Victoria College. They are dedicated to improving patients’ lives through physical therapy and are always adding to their skill sets with more education and training. Our Victoria Physical Therapy Center staff provide a broad and comprehensive array of therapies, some of which are featured below. Click on each one to find out more. To find out if we can help you, give us a call today.
Joint mobilization is a type of manual therapy. It is a hands-on type of passive movement technique to treat various musculoskeletal conditions. It involves applying force that mimics normal movement between joint surfaces. It is usually used to decrease pain in a joint or increase joint mobility. The goal of joint mobilization is to attempt to restore normal joint movement that may have been affected by damage or injury.
Soft Tissue Mobilization
Soft tissue mobilization is a type of manual therapy. A hands-on technique is used on muscles, fascia, and ligaments in order to attempt to reduce adhesions and optimize muscular function. Goals of soft tissue mobilization include reducing adhesions, improving range of motion, lengthening muscles and tendons, reducing swelling, reducing pain, and restoring function.
Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM)
IASTM s a type of manual therapy using specifically-designed tools to mobilize soft tissue. It is a popular treatment for myofascial restriction. Specially-designed instruments are used to create a mobilizing effect on scar tissue and myofascial adhesions. IASTM can help in improving motion, pain during motion, motor control, and muscle recruitment.
MFR is a safe and effective manual therapy wherein gentle sustained pressure is applied to the myofascial connective tissue to reduce pain and restore mobility. Its focus is to loosen muscle shortness and tightness, and can address a variety of conditions and symptoms.
Patients may seek MFR therapy following an injury which has led to loss of flexibility or function, or for ongoing chronic pain in the back, hip, shoulder, or any area containing soft tissue. MFR can also be used to treat temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction, carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), or even fibromyalgia or migraine headaches. Symptoms usually include tissue tightness that restricts motion or misaligns the body, sensation of pressure in muscles or joints that leads to pain, or any other chronic pain.
Myofascial pain can arise from skeletal muscle or connective tissues that are restricted by tight fascia. Pain can also arise from the myofascial tissue itself, at a “trigger point” where muscle fiber contraction has occurred. The restriction or contraction affects blood flow to the area, creating a cycle of worsening contraction unless the area is treated.
LSVT BIG ® treatment is used to train people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and certain other neurological conditions to use their body more normally. This therapy can lead to improved fine or gross motor movements such as buttoning clothing or maintaining balance while walking. It can lead to improved mobility, self-care, and other day-to-day tasks by helping those who suffer from PD or other such neurological disorders “recalibrate” their movements. It is customized to help each patient’s specific needs and can help regardless of the stage or severity of they patient’s condition. Our physical therapists and PTAs are all certified in providing LSVT BIG ® treatment.
Global Postural Reeducation (GPR)
GPR is a specific physiotherapeutic approach that involves the reproduction of various common positions (including sitting, standing, laying down, etc.) and obtaining a better understanding of body mechanics. It is designed to use muscle chains to investigate the cause of the patient’s physical ailment. GPR aims to lead to long-term learning to prevent relapses, as well as integrate new movements.
GPR can lead to improvements in respiratory muscle strength, chest expansion, pain, urinary incontinence, TMJ disorders, and postural stability. It can be used in patients suffering from muscle stiffness, muscular retractions, pain related to posture, and general or chronic pain. Benefits of GPR include improvement in pain symptoms, improved flexibility and mobility, improved posture, improved body awareness, and recurrence prevention due to long-term learning.
Neuromuscular re-education is a technique used to restore normal mobility. Nerves and muscles work together to make movement. Over time, nerve tracts are reinforced and muscle movement pattern are learned and stored in memory. These patterns can be affected when nerves or muscles experience injury or damage, as a result of trauma or medical illnesses such as stroke or traumatic brain injury. Neuromuscular re-education is one method used to assist patients regain normal movement.
Neurological Facilitation/Inhibition Techniques
Neurological facilitation and inhibition techniques are any type of manual therapy attempting to restore appropriate nerve communication between the brain and skeletal muscle. Neural reconnection is one method of treating muscles and fascia using simplified motor-control theory of brain-to-muscle communication. Functional movement patterns are developed through vector of muscle force, or kinetic chains. When these chains are “broken” and certain muscles do not respond appropriately, they are “inhibited,” and the brain compensates by choosing other, inappropriate muscles to do the work, which can lead to pain or loss of function. Your physical therapist uses this motor-control theory to retrain the brain to use proper muscle patterns and restore the primary muscle’s neural connection, so the muscle can answer appropriately when called upon. Neurological facilitation helps these kinetic chains function properly again when called upon by the brain, thereby restoring proper function and improving symptoms.
Mobility training consists of exercises to increase range of motion and stability, or control of muscles surrounding each joint. While mobility is not the same as flexibility, mobility training incorporates both flexibility and strength to restore or improve range of motion and stability.
Motor control theories encompass reflexive, automatic, adaptive, and voluntary movements, and are used to reestablish efficient, coordinated and goal-directed movement patterns involving various levels of the nervous system. Physical therapists incorporate neurophysiology, biomechanics, and motor learning principles to create motor solutions based on the interactions between the patient, the environment, and the task at hand.
Prioprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF)
PNF is a stretching technique used to improve muscular elasticity, and can improve both active and passive ranges of motion. It is also used to increase strength in patients who have sustained soft tissue injuries or damage due to invasive surgery. PNF can also increase muscular performance when done after exercise.
In the United States, urinary incontinence (UI) may affect up to almost 70% of women and up to 25% of men. Increasing age is a risk factor for UI, and people over the age of 65 are more than 6 times more likely to experience UI. Pelvic floor dysfunction is not only associated with UI, but also sexual dysfunction.
The most effective treatments to address pelvic floor muscle dysfunction include pelvic floor muscle training, individualized pelvic floor exercise programs, patient education, and supportive devices.
Many of those who suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction do not know how to correctly engage and contract pelvic floor musculature, but can be trained by physical therapists to successfully do so in order to facilitate restoration of pelvic floor muscle function.
Patient education includes healthy bowel and bladder habits, posture and body mechanics behavioral strategies on managing UI or decreasing pain, etc.
An individualized exercise program promotes success with management of patient symptoms, independence, and returning to enjoyable daily activities. Your physical therapist will be able to perform an examination and evaluation to determine the type of dysfunction and develop an individualized plan of care to suit your needs and goals.
Biophysical agents consist of a broad group of modalities such as: electrical stimulation, light therapy, ultrasound, iontophoresis, etc., which use various forms of energy in order to:
- Assist muscle force generation and contraction
- Decrease unwanted muscular activity
- Increase the rate of healing of open wounds and soft tissue
- Maintain strength after injury or surgery
- Modulate or reduce pain, reduce swelling, improve circulation, decrease inflammation, connective tissue extensibility, or restriction that may accompany musculoskeletal injury or circulatory dysfunction
- Increase joint mobility
- Increase muscle and neuromuscular performance
- Increase tissue perfusion
- Remodel scar tissue
- Treat skin conditions
Physical therapists make use of biophysical agents when indicted to reduce risk factors and complications, enhance health, wellness, or fitness, enhance or maintain physical performance, prevent impairments in body function and structure, remediate activity limitations, and remove participation restriction.
Vestibular disorders often manifest as vertigo, dizziness, visual changes and/or loss of balance. They can also cause nausea, vomiting, trouble concentrating, and fatigue, causing significant negative impact on quality of life. Due to symptoms of vestibular disorders, sufferers are often forced to reduce activity and adopt a more sedentary lifestyle, which can then lead to joint stiffness, reduced stamina, and decreased strength and flexibility. VRT is a specialized therapy which aims to alleviate these symptoms and manifestations of vestibular disorders.
VRT is an exercise-based program mainly designed to reduce dizziness and vertigo, gaze instability, and imbalance or falls. It helps with recovery by promoting compensation of the loss of function that may have occurred due to vestibular damage. VRT teaches the brain to use other systems to substitute for the dysfunctional vestibular system. The goal of VRT is to use a problem-oriented approach to promote compensation, but creating a customized exercise plan individualized to each patient’s specific goals and concerns. Before such a plan is made, a comprehensive exam is performed. Depending on the vestibular problems identified, there re 3 main types of exercise: Habituation, Gaze Stabilization, and/or Balance Training. Our therapists will work with you to determine the best plan to suit your needs.
The Kinesio Taping® Method is a rehabilitative taping technique intended to add to the body’s natural healing process, and provide support and stability to muscles and joints without restricting the body’s range of motion. It also provides prolonged soft tissue manipulation to extend the benefits of manual physical therapy that is performed in the office. Kinesio® Tex Tape is latex-free and can be worn for long periods at a time. It is safe for populations of all ages, and can treat several orthopedic, neuromuscular, neurological and other medical conditions. The Kinesio® Taping Method is a therapeutic taping technique not only offering patients the support they are looking for, but also rehabilitating the affected condition as well. Kinesio® Tex Tape targets different types of receptors in the sensory system, alleviates pain and improves lymphatic drainage by microscopically lifting the skin. This effect forms folds in the skin, increasing the space within, which decreases in inflammation of the affected areas.
And Many Others, including:
- Balance Training/Fall Prevention
- Endurance/Aerobic Training
- Strength Training/Therapeutic Exercise
- Post-Surgical Rehabilitation
- Cardiopulmonary Exercise
- Patient Education/Family Training
- Home Exercise Programs
Note: This information is not meant as medical advice. It is provided solely for education. Our practice would be pleased to discuss your unique circumstances and needs as they relate to these topics.