World Obesity Day falls annually on March 4th. It’s a day to raise awareness of the increased risks that come with obesity, such as higher rates of certain cancers, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, and diabetes. When your dad is overweight, it’s important to work on changes that can help him stay healthy. Weight loss is one of them.
Weight loss comes easier for some than others. It’s not always as simple as eating less or stopping eating processed foods. Mental and emotional health can play a role, and so can daily activity levels. One of the things your dad should try is to be more active each day.
Does he struggle to be active because his joints are stiff and walking around for extended amounts of time hurts? This is where physical therapy can make a difference.
Pain Management Through Physical Therapy
When your dad works with a physical therapist, pain management is part of the process. Massage can help alleviate muscle and joint pain, which can make it easier for your dad to stay active for a longer period of time.
Sometimes electrical stimulation can be used to relieve pain and promote circulation. If it would help your dad, his physical therapist will talk about the benefits and see what he thinks.
Under his physical therapist’s care, your dad learns exercise routines that help build muscle, balance, and stamina. The muscles will support his joints, which can alleviate pain and make it easier for him to move around.
Some of the exercises he learns will need to be repeated each day. Someone needs to make sure he goes through the routine of exercises as often as his physical therapist recommends. It may be multiple times per day.
In addition to those exercises, your dad’s physical therapist may encourage him to try other things to find exercises and activities he enjoys. As he starts walking more, he might find that hiking is appealing. Start slow and increase to harder trails as his stamina improves.
If he wants to try bike riding, find a quiet bike path and go out for an hour. See how he feels and increase from there. If he hates it, try something else. The goal is to find activities that he enjoys and is eager to do.
The Benefits of Physical Therapy
Physical therapy helps people achieve their goals of being more active. Your dad wants to lose weight, he’s ready, but his weight makes it hard for him to stand on his feet for a long time. He can build strength and stamina with the help of a physical therapist.
His therapist will look at his current range of motion and flexibility and come up with exercises that will help him. Through repetition and consistency, your dad will start to feel more confident and feel stronger.
As he starts to gain strength and improve his balance and flexibility, he’ll start to enjoy activities. The more active he is, the more weight he can lose. Schedule a physical therapy visit to have your dad’s current range of motion assessed.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring Physical Therapy in Northbrook, IL, call the caring staff at LifeCare Home Health & In-Home Services. Call (888) 606-4199 LifeCare serves all of the Chicago Metro Area.
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