The role of a physiotherapist may seem confusing to some people. Some people assumed that physiotherapist only provides massage as a treatment. Others thought that physiotherapist and chiropractic provide the same function.
To dispel the misconception, UCSI Hospital's physiotherapist Malani A/P Tamil Selvam explained the difference between Chiropractic and Physiotherapy. Additionally, she shared the common mistakes that people make during exercise.
A native of Kuala Lumpur, Miss Malani possesses a Bachelor’s degree in Physiotherapy. Whenever she is free, she will be enjoying a juggle trekking session or a game of badminton.
Today, there is increasing popularity of chiropractic treatment within society. People are becoming more aware of its role in dealing with spinal problems. According to Malani, however, many people are still confused about the differences between chiropractic and physiotherapy.
"Chiropractic placed a stronger emphasis in treatment through spinal alignment, but physiotherapy treatment deals with many parts of the body. These parts include muscles, tendons, ligament, and bones," Malani said.
Admittedly, many people want a treatment plan that helps them recover quickly. Yet, she said the patients need to follow the staggered treatment plan set by the physiotherapists to ensure that they remain healthy for at least five years.
"We need to rethink our perspective about recuperation. Understandably, we want treatments that enable our bodies to recover quickly. For conservative treatment like physiotherapy, it takes time, but the result is long-lasting.
"Others pop some pills the moment they are in pain. They may be well for few months before the pain comes back. For physiotherapy, we want the patients to remain healthy for at least five years. Hence, we have a lengthy treatment plan," she concurred.
She added the patients will know the kind of exercise they need to do should the pain return after five or six years. The physiotherapists would provide the necessary knowledge to the patients during the treatment sessions.
The physiotherapists work to reduce the patients' pain and help them regain some of their regular muscular function.
"We aim to help the patients to resume their daily routine. Usually, when people get injured, their abilities will be limited or reduced. As such, rehabilitation plays a role in restrengthening the muscles to at least 70% or 80% of their capacity," she commented.
In the meantime, Malani advised anyone who wishes to dabble in bodybuilding or weightlifting to gather sufficient knowledge before doing any activity.
"Many beginners became excited when they saw the weights and dumbbells. They carelessly performed weightlifting until they sustained a muscle injury. Some of them even dislocated their shoulders. In this situation, I recommend everyone to get enough knowledge of the exercise before performing it. The reason for this precaution is to help you prevent injuries.
"Imagine you have never done weightlifting for 20 to 30 years. When you perform a weightlifting exercise without prior knowledge or experience, it will badly affect your body. You need to know what the steps and techniques in weightlifting are. You cannot just jump into an exercise without preparation for the sake of being healthy," she said.