Physiotherapists help people recover from illness or injury using exercise and other techniques.
They help and treat people with physical problems caused by illness, injury, disability or ageing. They see human movement as central to the health and wellbeing of individuals so they aim to identify and maximise movement. As well as treating people, They promote good health and advise people on how to avoid injury.
They treat many types of conditions, such as:
- neurological (stroke, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's)
- neuromusculoskeletal (back pain, whiplash associated disorder, sports injuries, arthritis)
- cardiovascular (chronic heart disease, rehabilitation after heart attack)
- respiratory (asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis)
Once they have diagnosed the client’s movement problem, They then work with the patient to decide how to treat it. This could include:
- manual therapy
- therapeutic exercise
- electrotherapy (such as ultrasound, heat or cold)
In the NHS, they may work in hospitals where they are needed in nearly every department. In intensive care, for example, they are needed for round-the-clock chest physiotherapy to keep unconscious patients breathing.
They may also work in:
- outpatients' departments
- women’s health
- elderly care
- stroke services
- mental health and learning disability services
- occupational health
- More physiotherapy is also being delivered in the local community so they could be based in health centres and treat patients in their own homes, nursing homes, day centres or schools.