Ultrasound Therapy for Injury Rehabilitation in Freehold, NJ
At Advanced Physical Therapy in Freehold, New Jersey, we often incorporate ultrasound therapy into broader recovery programs designed to rehabilitate injured athletes and other active individuals. Therapeutic ultrasound (which differs from diagnostic ultrasound imaging) can be particularly helpful when performed along with physical therapy for the treatment of a variety of musculoskeletal conditions, including tendonitis, bursitis, frozen shoulder, sprains, and strains.
By delivering deep heat to soft tissues, such as muscles, tendons, and ligaments, ultrasound therapy can potentially reduce swelling, enhance blood circulation, and stimulate the healing of damaged tissue. The resulting increase in tissue temperature can also help promote relaxation, loosen taut muscles, and relieve pain. This is a key benefit of using ultrasound over a traditional hot pack, which cannot penetrate as deeply into muscles and joints.
Ultrasound therapy also has a beneficial non-thermal effect (cavitation). The energy introduced into the body through ultrasound creates microscopic gas bubbles that expand and contract very rapidly around damaged tissue. Cavitation can potentially accelerate tissue repair at the cellular level.
When performing ultrasound therapy at our office in Freehold, NJ, a physical therapist will generally:
- Apply a small amount of water-based gel, and possibly a medicated gel, to the treatment area (ultrasound can enhance the delivery of topical medication)
- Slowly glide an ultrasound transducer (sound head) in a circular motion
- Change the settings on the ultrasound machine as needed to control the intensity of the ultrasound waves or the depth of their penetration
Some of the pain relief that can be achieved with ultrasound therapy is a mechanical result of the treatment. However, an additional benefit of therapeutic ultrasound comes not from what the treatment itself does, but what it can help a physical therapist do. For instance, by utilizing the heating and healing powers of ultrasound, a physical therapist can prepare the muscles for other therapeutic treatments that can reduce pain and facilitate recovery, such as stretching and strengthening exercises.
If you are interested in adding ultrasound therapy to your recovery program, contact Advanced Physical Therapy in Freehold, NJ.