National Physical Therapy Month is an annual commemoration held in October by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA). During this month, the APTA recognizes the importance of physical therapists and physical therapy assistants in restoring and improving motion in people’s lives.
Physical therapy can make all the difference for older adults. After a major surgery or injury, physical therapy treatment is critical in helping older adults with pain management and regaining strength. Physical therapy is also useful in helping older adults improve their mobility and general health, allowing them to remain independent long into their retirement.
One of the major reasons seniors require physical therapy is for injuries sustained after falls. As we age, we lose some of our flexibility, strength, and balance, which can lead to hazardous falls. However, with physical therapy, seniors can learn exercises to maintain and improve these functions and prevent falls.
Older adults suffering from arthritis or osteoporosis can also benefit from the strength training and flexibility exercises offered in physical therapy. With help from a physical therapist, older adults are guided through gentle exercises designed to alleviate their discomfort and preserve the strength and mobility of their joints.
After a major hospital stay, many doctors recommend their senior patients receive rehabilitation treatment, including physical therapy. In recent years, retirement communities have opened rehabilitation centers within their campus, providing a comforting, caring environment for older adults to receive physical rehabilitation care.
Physical therapy has endless benefits for older adults, whether it’s to reduce pain, increase strength, or prevent painful injuries in the future. Working with a physical therapist in rehabilitation centers can help older adults reduce pain, gain strength and endurance, prevent falls, and maintain an overall higher quality of life. During National Physical Therapy Month, we recognize physical therapists and physical therapist assistants and the positive impact they have for millions of individuals in rehabilitation.