Introduction to Hydrotherapy
Hydrotherapy, also known as water therapy is part of medicine, much like physiotherapy.
It uses the unique properties of water, such as resistance, temperature, buoyancy and hydrostatic pressure, to build muscle strength, ease discomfort and promote healing.
The buoyancy of water supports and lessons stress on the joints, encourages freer movement and provides a safe environment for exercise.
As well as helping to build muscle strength, mass and control all over the body, hydrotherapy also helps with balance and co-ordination, making it perfect for dogs with full or partial paralysis.
Interesting facts about hydrotherapy
Water increases relaxation which can be an invaluable aid for the older dog, when on land, they struggle to move around and even relax when laying down. We have all the patience in the world to make your older dog feel comfortable and relaxed, thus enabling them to be pain free and feel the full benefits of hydrotherapy and the properties of water. Sometimes, they even fall asleep!
The properties of water can help calm the nervous system. It can stimulate sensations of muscles all over the body which can help dogs with neurological conditions.
The warm water of hydrotherapy causes blood vessels to dilate and increases circulation, delivering vital oxygen and blood to muscles that need repairing. Along with the warm water, the hydrostatic pressure increases circulation around the body, thus not only helping with muscle repair but it also helps carry oxygen and blood flow to the heart and respiratory system as well as removing waste and toxins.
The Benefits of Hydrotherapy
- Promote tissue repair and improved muscle tone
- Treatment of orthopaedic, skeletal and neurological conditions
- Treatment of muscle, ligament and other soft tissue injuries
- Reduces swelling & oedema from the hydrostatic pressure of the water
- Reduces stress on joints through reduced weight bearing
- Improves support for weak and unbalanced animals
- More rapid recovery from injury or surgery
- Improved general fitness, cardiovascular stamina & muscle tone due to the resistance provided by the water
- Helps with weight management of overweight animals
- Relieves the pain of osteoarthritis
- Useful in long term care for animals in pain