Knee replacement surgery is a blessing for people who have bad knees. However, the days that follow your surgery can involve some work and a lot of physical therapy. Here is a look at why post-surgery physical therapy is important after knee replacement surgery.
1. Physical therapy helps your body grow accustomed to your new joint.
Even though medical technology has made it possible for replacement joints to be as functional and lifelike as possible, they are still a foreign object. Therefore, it can take a bit of time for your body to adjust to the new unit and accept it as something that should be there. Physical therapy encourages tendons, muscles, and bones to work with the new knee so it starts to feel like an actual part of your body sooner.
2. Physical therapy can help encourage blood flow to the knee.
Keeping blood circulating through the knee and into your leg will help encourage the body to heal up faster after knee replacement surgery. After just about any type of surgery, there is always a risk of blood clots due to poor circulation, especially if you are not moving around as much as you normally would. Physical therapy is designed to lower those risks and also to help the body heal as quickly as possible.
3. Physical therapy will help you get back to your normal activity levels faster.
You probably are eager to get back to things like climbing stairs and squatting to garden or clean, but it can take a bit for you to get to this point after your surgery. One of the primary purposes of physical therapy is to make sure that your knee heals and gets used to moving so you can get back to doing those things as quickly as possible. Without physical therapy, you may still reach the point when you can bend your knee tightly, but it can take longer.
4. Physical therapy helps you restore your range of motion.
Many patients mistakenly believe that after they have their knee replaced, their full range of motion will be restored. However, you have to keep in mind that the muscles and tendons surrounding the new joint are accustomed to moving in only the ways your old knee allowed. It can take a little time for your muscles in your leg and around your knee to get used to moving freely as it once did.