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APA launches new campaign to encourage more Australians to visit their physio

APA launches new campaign to encourage more Austra
Photo: APA launches new campaign to encourage more Australians to visit their physio
The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) has launched a new campaign, targeting the more than 11 million Australians who live with a chronic health condition.

The ‘With your physio’ campaign aims to encourage those Australians to seek out physiotherapy as part of their treatment plan.

The first stage of the campaign will run from May through to August, and is designed to educate regular Australians who may feel uncomfortable talking about their chronic health condition, and of course, encourage them to see their physiotherapist.

The campaign will launch with a focus on common women’s health conditions, including sexual health, incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.

Physiotherapy treatment for these types of conditions may include pelvic floor muscle down training, relaxation and mindfulness training, stretching exercises, general exercise advice, and a pelvic floor exercise program to restore normal coordination, endurance and strength to the muscles.
When it comes to pregnancy and early motherhood, physiotherapy can have a huge impact, yet many women aren’t aware of the benefits.

Women’s health physiotherapists are able to assess, diagnose and treat many conditions that are commonly associated with pregnancy including musculoskeletal conditions such as pelvic girdle, low back or rib pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Some new mums experience incontinence and prolapse – to avoid and/or treat either condition, returning pelvic floor muscles to optimal function is critical.

But the benefits of physiotherapy extend far beyond women’s issues. In fact, physiotherapy plays a crucial role in the treatment of a wide variety of chronic conditions, including cancer, which will be the focus on second stage of the new campaign.

Physiotherapists are experts in treating patients living with chronic conditions through exercise prescription, lifestyle modification and evaluation, and should be part of the patient’s journey to ensure the condition is managed appropriately, says Women’s, Men’s and Pelvic Health physiotherapist, Vanessa Wilmot.

“Physiotherapists are skilled in identifying other comorbidities, in addition to prescribing exercise, which impact the underlying condition,” she says.

“Prescription of exercise as a form of medicine/health management is increasingly important to manage chronic health conditions, in order to prevent further decline and/or recover full health of the patient.

“Physiotherapists help you recover from injury, reduce pain and stiffness, increase mobility and prevent further injury. We listen to your needs to tailor a treatment specific to your condition.”

Ms Wilmot says the primary goal of the campaign is to encourage Australians to see physiotherapy as an integral part of their health recovery, and to help prevent future illness, disease and injury from occurring.

“Some of the many techniques physiotherapists use to treat and help you overcome your condition include, prescribing exercise programs to improve mobility and strengthen muscles, educating about their condition, then implementing and re-evaluating exercise as treatment.

“People who live with chronic health conditions, such as chronic pain, cancer and women’s or men’s health concerns, are able to get back to doing what they love with their physio.”

A number of fact sheets highlighting key information on sexual health, incontinence and prolapse have been developed and can be accessed here.

Cancer will be the second chronic health condition highlighted in the campaign, kicking off in September 2021.

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Nicole Madigan

Nicole Madigan is a widely published journalist with more than 15 years experience in the media and communications industries.

Specialising in health, business, property and finance, Nicole writes regularly for numerous high-profile newspapers, magazines and online publications.

Before moving into freelance writing almost a decade ago, Nicole was an on-air reporter with Channel Nine and a newspaper journalist with News Limited.

Nicole is also the Director of content and communications agency Stella Communications (www.stellacomms.com) and a children's author.