Hip Replacement Rehabilitation in Visalia

Physical therapy is crucial for getting back on your feet after hip replacement surgery.  The good news is Bacci & Glinn Physical Therapy specialize in hip replacement rehabilitation in Visalia and Hanford.

Hip Replacement or Hip Arthroplasty Can Alleviate Severe Pain But…

Hip replacements have consistently grown in popularity to become one of the most frequently performed orthopedic surgeries. Since first being introduced in 1960, the technique and the prosthesis used have been continually improved upon and perfected over time. All along, the goal has been to help patients recover more quickly and with less pain, so they can get back to doing the things they love.

Hip replacement surgery—which can be either partial or complete— is used to treat patients with severe osteoarthritis or a hip fracture after all other conservative (non-surgical) treatments have failed. The procedure removes damaged bone and cartilage from the painful hip and replaces it with a prosthetic, or artificial hip. If successful, the end result will relieve pain, improve joint mobility and restore or improve a patient’s ability to safely perform daily activities like walking, standing, and climbing stairs.

The surgery itself, however, is not the end of the story. In order to have a successful recovery, it’s incredibly important that the patient follows a course of physical therapy following the hip replacement. Physical therapy is a necessary component of the recovery process that will help patients regain their flexibility, build back their strength, and gradually return to everyday activities.

Highlights of hip arthroplasty rehabilitation in Visalia

In most cases, a physical therapist will come to the patient’s bedside on the first or second day after surgery to begin post-operative treatment. This period of time is called the acute phase of recovery, and the therapist will help you with tasks like turning in bed and rising to a sitting position, getting out of bed to stand, and walking with an assistive device like a walker or crutches a short distance. The therapists will also begin some gentle exercises to increase flexibility and strength at this time.

Some time after being discharged from the hospital, patients will begin an outpatient treatment program at a local clinic will begin. During this time, physical therapists will continue to focus on helping patients with walking and stair climbing, balance, full movement of the leg and new hip, and transferring to the bed, chair and car. They will also incorporate specific muscle strengthening to improve the patient’s ability to stand and walk safely and independently.

Sometimes a Good Home Program is All That is Needed

In some cases, our physical therapist may have enough confidence in a patient to prescribe an unsupervised rehabilitation program to be performed at home. While less capable patients may require the specific guidance of a physical therapist at the clinic, a recent study has shown that both supervised and unsupervised treatment programs can lead to similar results after surgery:

The results demonstrated that outcomes in response to rehabilitation after hip total replacement surgery are clinically and statistically similar whether the program was supervised or not. The results suggest that early rehabilitation programs can be effectively delivered unsupervised in the home to low-risk patients discharged home after surgery.

Patients who are scheduled to have a hip replacement surgery are therefore encouraged to confirm that physical therapy is part of their recovery plan, and to participate in it fully in order to experience the best possible outcomes.

When a Home Program Isn’t Enough – Give Us a Call

If the home program isn’t enough to get you back to walking normally or you don’t have good pain relief after the procedure, then total hip replacement physical therapy program may be for you.  Contact us for additional information and details.  We accept most insurance plans and can usually get you in within a few days.

Fall Prevention Program in Visalia – Reduce Your Fall Risk

Staying active and physical therapy can help reduce your risk for falls

Falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries in older adults, and as a result, they threaten seniors’ safety and independence in major ways. This is exactly why we offer a fall prevention program in Visalia.

Approximately one-third of Americans aged 65 and over falls each year, which results in more than 2.4 million injuries treated in emergency rooms. Most fractures among older adults are caused by falls, with over 95% of hip fractures resulting from a fall of some sort.

A fall can occur for a number of reasons, but they are often due to a combination of internal and external factors. Poor vision and/or balance in an environment with bad lighting, bad footing or slippery surfaces can be a recipe for a fall, and environmental hazards are responsible for at least one-third of all falls, both in and out of the house.

If a fall does occur, many people unfortunately go on to develop an even greater fear of falling, even if they’re not injured. This can cause them to limit their activities, which leads to reduced mobility and loss of physical fitness. Worst of all, this process can turn into a vicious cycle that actually increases the risk for falling rather than lowering it.

What’s most important to realize is that falling should not be seen as an inevitable part of aging. Making simple changes around your home, as well as improving your balance with some targeted exercises can significantly reduce your risk of falling. Below are some fall-prevention tips to help you stay on your feet and injury-free:

  • Get physically active on a regular basis, as keeping up with your physical fitness is one of the best ways to keep your body strong and prevent falls
  • See a physical therapist for a balance training program to be completed in the clinic and at home; these types of programs focus on improving balance and posture, which will reduce your chances of falling
  • Wear shoes with nonskid soles, consider getting Velcro or spyrolaces if needed
  • Conduct a walkthrough of your home to identify possible problems that may lead to a fall; once identified, make any necessary changes to remove these risks
  • Install handrails on both sides of all stairways, avoid clutter and putting any items on the floor, remove throw rugs and make sure your home is well-lit
  • Get your eyes checked once a year, and get adequate calcium and vitamin D
  • Take your time, be patient and ask others for help with difficult, risky tasks

Balance training programs created by physical therapists have been shown to be effective for reducing the risk for falls in older adults, and the conclusion of this recent study highlights the potential benefits of any type of exercise in the elderly population:

Adding resistance exercise to aerobic exercise improves factors associated with an increased risk of falls. However, both exercise regimes, combined or aerobic alone, are more effective than no exercise in the reduction of fall risk factors.

So if you are concerned with risk for falling or that of a loved one, seeing a physical therapist is one of the best choices you can make to do something about it. Contact us to find out more about our Fall Prevention Program in Visalia and how we can help reduce your fall risk so you can lead a safer life.

Physical Therapists Help with Balance Treatment in Visalia

Physical therapists can help manage any balance disorders that may be interfering with your life

At any given moment throughout the day, when performing practically every movement, our vestibular system is responsible for keeping us balanced. For most of us, we hardly even think about how much we use this system during tasks like walking up stairs or standing from a chair. But for anyone with a balance disorder, some of these seemingly simple tasks that we take for granted can become extremely challenging.  The good news is our clinicians are experts at helping patients with balance treatment in Visalia.

The vestibular system is the sensory system that provides the brain with the most important information regarding the body’s sense of balance and spatial orientation in order to coordinate our movements smoothly. The system detects motion of the head—mainly through the inner ear, as well as the eyes, muscles and joints—and from this, it generates reflexes that are crucial for completing many daily activities. Some of these tasks include stabilizing our gaze and maintaining the posture of our head and body.

When the vestibular system functions properly, most people are unaware of it and don’t think twice about activities like walking on uneven surfaces or arising from bed in the middle of the night. When certain disorders affect the vestibular system, however, various symptoms can come about, the most common of which are dizziness, vertigo and balance problems.

There are a number of causes of dizziness and vertigo, but two of the most common are benign paroxysmal vertigo disorder and vestibular neuritis and labyrinthitis. Both of these vestibular disorders occur due to different problems with the inner ear, and cause a change in the information being received by the brain from the vestibular system.

Vestibular therapy is one important intervention physical therapists provide that works to improve balance with various exercises. Treatment typically consists of the following:

  • An evaluation of all body parts that affect balance to determine how much balance is impaired; the resulting program will be based on this evaluation
  • Gaze stabilization exercises: these exercises are designed to keep vision steady while making rapid side-to-side head turns and focusing on an object, which will help the brain adapt to new signaling from the vestibular system
  • Balance retraining exercises: these exercises include shifting body weight in various directions while standing to improve how information is sent to the brain
  • Home-exercise program: your physical therapist will also create a program to be performed at home that includes these exercises and possibly others

The benefits of balance therapy in Visalia for patients with balance disorders can be seen in the conclusion of this study review from 2015:

Patients with central and peripheral vestibular disorders benefit from physical therapy interventions. Advances in physical therapy interventions include new methods to stimulate adaptation of the vestibulo-ocular reflex and the vestibulospinal systems.

So if you’re dealing with any sort of balance problem and are looking for balance treatment in Visalia, we strongly recommend coming in for a visit. Our physical therapists can help get to the root of your problem and start you on your way to a more stable life without any bothersome balance complications.

For more information about our balance program, click here to visit our balance therapy page.

To Get Started on a Balance Evaluation & Treatment Program call (559-733-2478)

Fall Prevention Program in Visalia

Lifestyle modifications and physical therapy can reduce your risk of falling later in life

If you happen to be over the age of 65 or have a loved one in that age group, you are probably aware of the risk of falls and the damage that can be done if one occurs. Awareness is essential for preventing falls, but all the information out there can be overwhelming and lead to a greater fear of falling, which can actually have a negative effect. With that in mind, we’d like to explain some basic steps that can reduce not only your risk, but your fear of falling as well. Falls are the leading cause of injury for older Americans, and approximately one-third of adults aged 65 and over falls each year. When one falls, there’s a good chance bones will be broken. The femur (the thigh bone that meets with the socket in the pelvis) is often fractured as a result of these falls.  Other common fractures include the spine, forearm, leg and ankle. Falls can occur for any number of reasons, but they are usually due to a combination of internal and external factors. Poor vision and/or balance in an environment with bad lighting, bad footing or slippery surfaces can all be a recipe for a fall. If a fall does occur, many individuals go on to develop an even greater fear of falling, even if they don’t get injured. This can cause them to limit their activities, which leads to reduced mobility and loss of physical fitness. Worst of all, this process can become a vicious cycle that actually increases the risk for falling.

Overcome the Fear of Falling & Improve Your Physical Fitness

What’s most important to realize is that falling should not be seen as an inevitable part of aging. By being aware of your risk and making lifestyle adjustments both in and out of your home, you can significantly reduce your risk of falling. Below are some fall-prevention tips to help you stay on your feet and injury-free:
  • Stay physically active, since good fitness can help prevent falls
  • Wear shoes with nonskid soles, and consider getting Velcro or spyrolaces
  • Conduct a walkthrough of your home (with someone else if you’re uncertain) to identify possible problems that may lead to a fall, then make necessary changes
  • Install handrails on both sides of stairways, avoid clutter and items on the floor
  • Get your eyes checked once a year, and get adequate calcium and vitamin D
  • If you’re taking numerous medications, learn the side effects and if there are any interactions that can increase your risk of falling
  • Take your time, be patient and ask others for help with difficult, risky tasks

Beyond Eduction & Lifestyle Modifications, Our Balance Program Can Really Help

Aside from making these important lifestyle adjustments, physical therapy is another positive means to reduce your risk for falls. A physical therapy program will help to improve your strength, flexibility, balance and overall fitness, all of which will make you more capable of navigating your daily life with a lower fall risk. To highlight how physical therapy can help prevent falls in older adults, a recent study compared resistance (strengthening) exercises to aerobic exercises, both of which are commonly prescribed by physical therapists. Researchers concluded with the following:
Adding resistance exercise to aerobic exercise improves factors associated with an increased risk of falls. However, both exercise regimes, combined or aerobic alone, are more effective than no exercise in the reduction of fall risk factors. Reference: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27353246
So if you’re concerned with your risk for falling later in life, contact us for a consultation and find out how we can help you keep your fall risk at a minimum. NOTE: We have more information about our Balance Program if you click here.