There’s nothing more painful than an injury that requires a surgery, except the actual surgery and the recovery process of course. My brother-in-law met with a really bad accident a year ago; his hip bone was crushed and he had to have a series of reconstructive surgeries in order to be able to even think of walking again. The pain was unbearable for months, and he was bed-ridden and completely dependent on his caregivers for even the smallest of things.
But then, the moment physical therapy entered the picture, there was such a marked difference in both his attitude and his feelings – he was more upbeat, and even though he was still in pain, he was able to grin and bear it. It made me and the rest of my family realize how vital physical therapy is to the process of recuperation after a major surgery, especially those that involve setting broken bones, reconstructing torn ligaments, and others that affect movement at the joints. Physiotherapy is important because:
It expedites the healing process: When you start physiotherapy with a good therapist, you start feeling better in leaps and bounds. Although the exercises may be painful at first, when you stick with them, they give you considerable relief from the pain and stiffness.
It gives you a sense of achievement: Even if you do your exercises for just 30 minutes or so a day, you feel that it’s much better than just lying in bed and doing nothing. Being active, even in the most minimum of ways, gives you a sense of achievement that is important when you’re recovering from a serious injury.
It reduces the pain considerably: The exercises themselves may seem to increase the pain, but the truth is that they are carefully designed to minimize it. If you stop doing them because of the pain, your joints and muscles are never going to get back to the way they were before. And the resulting stiffness and unnaturalness are going to make you ache more than ever before.
It improves your range of motion and flexibility: Most physical therapy exercises are structured to improve your range of motion and flexibility when you’re trying to recuperate from a surgery at a major joint like the hip or the knee. If you don’t do them properly, you’re going to find yourself with limited movement and may end up limping for life.
It enhances muscle strength: Exercises that come later in your recover period are focused on building strength in your muscles. This prevent you from suffering the same injury again (because you do tend to be weak) and also helps you support yourself using your muscles rather than your bones and joints bearing your whole body weight.