If you care for an aging parent or loved one with arthritis, one of the most frustrating aspects of providing care is watching your loved one struggle with stiffness and pain. While there is no cure for arthritis, patients and their families have more choices for treatment than in the past. Along with over-the-counter prescriptions, periodic injections of anti-inflammatory drugs and dietary restrictions, a new form of therapy is being considered by numerous arthritis patients: hydrotherapy.
Hydrotherapy in the Clinical Setting
Hydrotherapy or therapy with water can take many forms. Many physical therapy clinics and senior-oriented health centers offer therapy pools for patients to have a soak, swim, or perform other exercises in the warm water. These exercises relax and loosen the joints and allow seniors to enjoy a greater range of motion than they would have otherwise. Seniors can also gain strength and flexibility, and exercising in a weightless environment makes it so there is no impact or irritation on the joints.
Hydrotherapy in the Home
While most people don’t have access to a full-sized therapy pool in their own home, the use of warm water for stiff and painful joints can be used to good effect. If your loved one suffers from arthritis, see if they can get into the bathroom for a warm shower or a soak in the tub. Many patients may also consider installing a walk-in whirlpool tub to soak in when their joints are painful. Although this might be a major investment, this type of therapy provides comfort and can even help facilitate the completion of other physical activities and daily tasks.
Safety & Hydrotherapy
Hydrotherapy can help keep the joints more flexible and supple, which will not only reduce the risk of falls but in generally lead to a better quality of life for the one you love. However, hydrotherapy is an activity that should only be performed by a senior if they are safely able to do so, or under the careful supervision of a family caregiver. If you are unable to provide monitoring 24/7, learn more about hourly home care in Summit and how families utilize outside caregivers to assist with their loved one’s activities of daily living.
For more information about senior home care, visit www.homecareassistancesummit.com or request free information by calling a friendly Care Manager at 908-450-9400.