Hydrotherapy to ease joint pain

A particularly effective treatment for illnesses like arthritis is hydrotherapy or water therapy.

Hydrotherapy also works well for those with back pain or ankylosing spondylitis (inflammatory disease that can cause bones in the spine to fuse).

Hydrotherapy exercises incorporate specialised movements that are performed in a warm-water (between 32 deg C and 36 deg C) swimming pool.

The exercises are typically done in water that comes up to between the waist and shoulders and with the assistance of a physical therapist.

They can be beneficial for people with joint discomfort, especially those who have undergone joint replacement surgery.

Hydrotherapy promotes relaxation, improves blood circulation, eases anxiety, depression and pain, and treats musculoskeletal problems.

Walking underwater is difficult because of the water's resistance but it helps develop muscle strength.

Research has shown that regular exercises underwater can enhance joint functionality, lessen symptoms like fatigue and lower the risk of developing chronic problems, such as heart disease, that are linked to inflammatory arthritis.

Many people with arthritis avoid exercises because they are afraid of further hurting their joints and causing more pain but they find pain alleviation with hydrotherapy.

People with rheumatoid arthritis who did hydrotherapy experienced less joint soreness and pain, according to a study published in the journal Musculoskeletal Care. Hydrotherapy also improved their attitude and they enjoyed the workout.

Dr Babina NM, chief medical officer at Jindal Naturecure Institute in Bengaluru, says hydrotherapy is effective in treating chronic pain.

It helps to loosen muscles while promoting relaxation and improves digestion and metabolism.

Hydrotherapy also increases cardio-respiratory fitness, which is essential for good heart health.

Studies have shown that inflammation decreases with hydrotherapy and the exercises stimulate blood circulation.

Do not attempt to do hydrotherapy exercises on your own. It's best to get professional assistance from a physical therapist.

Indo-Asian News Service

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