Therapeutic ultrasound is a common treatment practice in Physiotherapy . It can often be confused with diagnostic ultrasound. The main treatment method chiropractors use is spinal therapy, although some are known to implement therapeutic ultrasound as well.
What is therapeutic ultrasound and how does it help with the treatment?
Therapeutic ultrasound is a method that uses sound waves to relieve and/or treat muscle spasms, inflammation, and pain.
Ultrasound brings energy into the body resulting in the microscopic gas bubbles around the tissues to expand and contract. The fast expansion and contraction of gas bubbles improves healing of the affected tissue as it helps improve the speed of the cellular processes.
Ultrasound is mainly for deep heating the body’s soft tissue structures. Deep heating the tendons, ligaments, and/or muscles helps to speed up the healing process by increasing the circulation to the soft tissues. Ultrasound increases the tissue temperature and decreases pain. Deep heating also loosens the tight muscles and tendons. A chiropractor may use ultrasound therapy to improve the extensibility of the affected tissues in your body.
Ultrasound therapy helps treat various kinds of conditions and injuries including muscle tears, muscle strains, sprains and ligament injuries, joint tightness or contracture, bursitis (inflammation of the bursa), tendonitis (inflammation or irritation of a tendon), and frozen shoulder.
Using Therapeutic Ultrasound
Firstly the chiropractor will apply a small amount of ultrasound gel on the body part requiring treatment and this helps to reduce friction. The ultrasound head is placed on the affected area and slowly rotated in a small, circular direction. Various settings may be changed on the ultrasound equipment to control the intensity of the ultrasound. The settings depend on the stage of healing.
Ultrasound therapy is completely painless although the patient may feel a slight warming sensation and perhaps a little tingling on the treated area.