These days amid the Coronavirus pandemic, Telehealth is becoming quite the buzzword. With a lot of us bunkered down now and unable to receive help in person, our choices for self-care have become quite limited. Telehealth is an alternate way to receive medical care via a video conference, but are you wondering if this approach would work for you?
You may understand how visiting with your doctor via a video conference for a prescription refill may be doable, but how about in the world of physical therapy where we value touch as being such an integrative part of our care. Especially in the world of pelvic Physical Therapy or after someone has recovered from breast cancer.
Actually, there is quite a bit you can do via Telehealth to help support patients via video sessions.
In fact, for a while, I have come to the realization that coming to the clinic for treatment is not always convenient or a realistic goal. Women are extremely busy juggling work and family life, and unfortunately, any attempts of self-care are pushed to the back burner.
I’ve had some clients drive over an hour for treatment…
Some women have to stop attending their sessions because they go back to work after their baby, and are unable to fit therapy into their schedule. Some rush during their lunchtime, or even take vacation time to leave work early to attend therapy. So the thought has been on my mind for a while—what can I do to make things easier for women to get the care they need? Enter the Telehealth world.
I can’t help but wonder if the new world of Telehealth may not end up being a blessing for women to acquire the help they need.
I predict online courses along with one-to-one counseling online via Telehealth will become big this year. Even though we anticipate businesses opening up soon, I think it will still be a while for some to feel confident getting back out in their regular routines. Especially those who are immunity compromised, such as those recovering from cancer.
While I do think in some cases seeing clients in person (at some point during their care) may be an integral part of their healing journey, there are some that can reach their goals with very little if any hands-on treatment.
In fact, all clients can learn certain skills via Telehealth that can help improve their issues overall with just a little “know how” and confidence.
So to give ideas of how Telehealth can work for you…let’s dig into some of those examples...
Recovering after breast cancer– Looking at your shoulder range of motion via a video conference will be a good indicator where to start, as well as a self-assessment on any scars that might be tender. You can be taught self-scar massage via video conferencing as well as appropriate range of motion exercises Guidance on how to begin general conditioning exercises can be discussed as well as ways to help manage fatigue. Lymphedema risks can be discussed, and if any lymphedema needs to be addressed, we can teach self-manual drainage techniques as well as how to self-wrap, either just with you or with help from a partner.
Incontinence issues- if you are having urgency symptoms, learning ways to retrain the bladder is a major part of treatment, in some cases not having to do a vaginal exam at all. Filling out a bladder log and learning ways to defer the urge and frequency is an important hands off component. If you are having leakage with exercise, we can teach ways to help decrease the amount of pressure that is being placed downward (no it’s not always about the kegel) and look at breathing and posture to help trouble shoot along with prescribing the exercises you need.
Diastasis recti recovery– If you are a new Mom wanting to learn how to strengthen your core, no problem. This may be where you can have your hubby hold a phone up to video during part of the evaluation. We would then progress you through a number of motions and observe for any doming along the six pack muscles, any reports of pain, leakage or feelings of vaginal pressure. We would then prescribe exercises as appropriate based on the evaluation.
Specific strategies in your home to relieve back pain-maybe as a new Mom you need advice on setting up your nursery to make things easier on your back due to back pain. We could watch how you lift your kiddos, look at breastfeeding positions with you in YOUR chair or couch, observe how you load laundry, etc in order to help give advice on body mechanics to decrease back pain during home activities.
Vaginismus and instruction of dilator use (and no you will be required to show me via telehealth any private parts!) Vaginismus is when the vaginal muscles tighten up as almost a reflex with attempts of sexual intercourse or when having a gynecological exam. This results in painful intercourse or unable to have intercourse at all. Consistent self-treatment at home is essential to the treatment process. Learning how to use dilators and learning ways to decrease stress and anxiety in some cases will be a big part of recovery. Education is a big component which can be done via Telehealth.
Postpartum Strengthening– this goes along with Diastasis recovery above, but we can help teach exercises that are safe in the immediate postpartum period. We can even help those who had babies many years ago. It’s never too late! We screen for leakage, diastasis, pelvic organ prolapse and any pain based on your current symptoms. We can then tailor a safe but specific program for you based on your goals. Maybe you want to return to running or weight lifting at the gym. We can also do programs you can do at home with equipment you already have.
Constipation– This can go hand in hand with certain pelvic pain conditions. Things we teach include looking at certain optimal positions to help eliminate stool while going to the bathroom. We also look at bladder logs to see both diet and frequency of going to the bathroom in general. We discuss the importance of fiber, water intake and exercise progression. Emphasizing ways to release stress, awareness of the pelvic floor reaction under stress and self-massage techniques to the abdomen can help improve constipation and or pelvic pain.
These are just a few examples. There are many more ways to offer Telehealth in order to help you reach your goals!! The ways are really endless!
We especially love to help new Moms recover and get back to what they love doing after having their baby! Click here to discover ways we can help….
We do offer free phone consults if you would like to call and find out if Telehealth and our services are right for you. We are seeing patients in person now currently as well. You may decide you would like a combination of the two, maybe a visit or 2 in person and the rest via Telehealth. We are totally flexible and will be glad to do whatever you would feel comfortable doing at this time.
Please call or email Camille at 317-689-0073 or firstname.lastname@example.org