Everything You Need to Know About Shockwave Therapy

Shockwave Therapy

Muscular pain can not only hinder your sporting performance: it can have a significant impact on your overall quality of life. Whether you’re suffering from an acute injury or a long-term chronic condition, you must treat the root cause of the issue while also finding strategies to help reduce muscle soreness.

Shockwave therapy is one such strategy that many patients find incredibly beneficial. By targeting specific areas of the body — also known as myofascial trigger points — with kinetic energy, you can bring about relief from pain and promote cellular regeneration.

As a leading provider of physiotherapy in the eastern suburbs, shockwave therapy is just one of many pain-relief strategies offered by Freedom Sports Medicine. Our physiotherapists in Ringwood will work with you to first determine what is causing your pain before recommending strategies and therapies to help alleviate symptoms.

What is shockwave therapy?

Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive therapeutic strategy for treating muscular pain and helping to improve mobility.

A shockwave is an acoustic wave caused by a sudden change in air pressure. The kinetic energy produced by this change in pressure is used in a targeted manner to help promote tissue healing and muscular pain relief.

What is shockwave therapy used to treat?

Physiotherapists prescribe shockwave therapy to treat a variety of issues, often as an alternative to cortisol injections or other pharmaceutical methods of pain relief.

Muscular pain is often caused by myofascial trigger points, which are sensitive, painful knots that can be caused by injury or overuse. These trigger points can occur anywhere throughout the body but primarily affect the neck, shoulders, back, and limbs. Targeted shockwave therapy can break up these knots in a similar but more powerful fashion to manual massage.

In addition to pain relief, some physiotherapists may prescribe shockwave therapy as a method of repairing tendons. The treatment stimulates blood flow to the affected areas, promoting healing and regeneration.

Calcific tendonitis is a specific condition that is caused by a buildup of calcium in tendons and muscles. It can happen anywhere in the body but primarily targets the shoulder joint. Shockwave therapy can be used to break down excessive calcium deposits and provide relief from pain. Other conditions targeting our tendons, including plantar fasciitis and achilles tendonitis, are also often treated using shockwave therapy.

While shockwave therapy can be a first line treatment, a physiotherapist will often prescribe it to treat chronic conditions: situations where a patient has tried multiple therapies without finding any relief from their pain. It’s also commonly recommended as part of a broader treatment strategy; there is no use providing pain relief without fixing the underlying cause of the issue.

What to expect from shockwave therapy

Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive treatment, meaning it shouldn’t cause you any significant discomfort or pain. A patient may experience a low level of discomfort, in which case the physio can adjust the intensity of the treatment.

To start with, the physio will mark the area of the body being targeted. They will cover it with an ultrasound gel (to ensure waves are transmitted smoothly) before applying the shockwave applicator. How long the treatment lasts for and the intensity of the waves will depend on the severity of the issue at hand.

A physiotherapist might recommend you receive multiple rounds of shockwave therapy each week, particularly if your condition is chronic. Alternatively, it might be offered as a one-off treatment.

Speak to your physio about what type of exercise you can engage in post-treatment. It may be recommended that you avoid certain movements that involve the treated area. However, you should have no problem going about daily activities.

Freedom Sports Medicine — helping you to live your best life

Here at Freedom Sports Medicine, our team of trained and experienced physiotherapists understand how muscular pain and injury can impact your daily life. We are passionate about helping our clients regain their mobility and confidence post-injury or diagnosis.

In addition to shockwave therapy, we offer a wide variety of services that will get you back on your feet sooner. From traditional manual therapy to dry needling, our physiotherapists in Ringwood have a host of strategies up their sleeve to promote recovery and strengthen areas of concern.

While we do treat high-performing athletes, we are driven to help all people improve their health and fitness. For more information about our team and services or to speak to a “sports physio near me,” contact Freedom Sports Medicine today.

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