Physiotherapy for The Elderly

Physiotherapy is an evidence-based profession helping people affected by injury, illness or disability.

Physiotherapists may choose various treatment and management tools in order to facilitate recovery, enabling people to stay in work while helping them to remain independent for as long as possible. They maintain health for people of all ages, helping patients to manage pain and prevent disease (

Physiotherapists are able to treat people with various health problems. This can be problems with their muscles and joints such as back pain, sciatica, osteoarthritis, spondylosis.  People suffering with conditions such as cerebral palsy, muscle dystrophy, neuropathies would benefit from physiotherapy intervention. Stroke can a very disabling condition where in an input from physiotherapist is a must in order to achieve optimal rehabilitation and recovery. Physiotherapists help people with balance and coordination problems, help them to walk again if required with necessary walking aid, guide them with necessary exercise program in order to strengthen the muscles enabling them to return back to their function. Following a surgical procedure such as a hip or a knee replacement, the mobility can be affected due to post operative pain and swelling and sometimes even loss of confidence. This is where a physiotherapist can make a real difference.

The aging process can affect all organ systems including the heart and circulation, the blood pressure may increase and the process of atherosclerosis (thickening of the arteries) would enhance. Aging also affects the lung capacity and the kidney function.  As a result, the older adults can have a combination of health conditions, what in the clinical terms is known as a “multipathologypatient”. Physiotherapists with expertise in the elderly care have the knowledgebase and experience of treating older adults with multipathology.

At The Sherwood Clinic inEdgware and Harrow, the team of physiotherapists experienced in elderly care,use movement and exercise, manual therapy, electrotherapy, acupuncture and education to restore function in the elderly whose health may have been compromised due to one or more of the conditions listed above. The physiotherapists at The Sherwood Clinic, London can visit the patients in their homes providing expert therapy in their own familiar environment. They provide rehabilitation for stroke patients, as well as for people suffering with conditions such as Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, diabetic neuropathies as well provide care following any major operation. Research has shown that exercise is beneficial for osteoporosis, for people with heart problems such as stable angina and following bypass surgery, for people with respiratory problems such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema, asthma and for people who may suffer with urinary incontinence due to weak pelvic floor muscles.

Physiotherapy plays a vital role in the management of the older adult, and they are trained and equipped to work alongside the medical team.

Sushma Shethna MSc (Phy) MCSP MSc ( Ayu)

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