Physical therapists’ role in chronic pain is the theme for World Physical Therapy Day

Chronic pain is a significant global health burden – with low back pain causing more
disability than any other condition. The role of physical therapists in helping people with
chronic pain to take control of their condition, increase their activity, and improve their
quality of life is the theme of this year’s World Physical Therapy Day on 8 September
2019.
Chronic pain can be associated with a wide range of conditions including low back pain, cervical
and thoracic pain, shoulder pain, headache disorders, cancer, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis,
and osteoarthritis.
Physical therapists have unique skills to recommend specific exercise programmes to help
relieve chronic pain.
The benefits of using exercise to manage chronic pain include:
• maintaining flexibility and movement
• improving cardiovascular health
• building and keeping muscle tone
• improving mood and general wellbeing
• helping control pain
• increasing confidence to take part in activities
• taking back control of your life and reducing your fear.
WCPT President Emma Stokes said: ‘People who have chronic pain tell us that it can be difficult
to get or stay active. But a physical therapist can work with you to suggest activities or a
programme that’s right for you. They can help you understand how pain works, reduce your fears
around pain, educate you about your condition, encourage you to take part safely in physical
activity, build your confidence, help you remain or return to work or participate in activities that
allow you to live life the way you want to.
‘Talk to a physical therapist and discover how they can help you learn self-management
techniques to manage your pain.’

Source : www.wcpt.org