Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS), Hypermobility, and Physical Therapy
What is Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS)?
Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) is a group of rare genetic disorders that affect the connective tissues in the body, including skin, joints, and blood vessel walls. These connective tissues provide support to various body structures and organs. EDS is characterized by hypermobility (excessive movement) of the joints, skin that is easily bruised and hyperextensible, and a tendency to scar easily.
How Can Physical Therapy Help with EDS and Hypermobility?
Physical therapy plays a critical role in managing the symptoms of EDS and hypermobility. A trained physical therapist can:
- Strengthen Muscles: This helps to stabilize hypermobile joints, reducing the risk of dislocations or injuries.
- Improve Balance and Coordination: This can aid in preventing falls and improving overall mobility.
- Provide Pain Management Techniques: Including modalities like heat, cold, and therapeutic exercises.
- Educate on Joint Protection: Offering guidance on how to avoid unnecessary stress or strain on vulnerable joints.
Goals with Physical Therapy
The primary objectives of physical therapy for EDS and hypermobility include:
- Enhancing Functionality: To improve the patient's quality of life by increasing their ability to perform daily tasks with minimal discomfort.
- Reducing Pain: Addressing and alleviating chronic pain that many EDS patients experience.
- Preventing Injury: Through education, improved biomechanics, and personalized exercise programs.
- Increasing Muscle Strength and Endurance: To support and protect hypermobile joints.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can physical therapy cure EDS?
No, physical therapy cannot cure EDS as it's a genetic condition. However, it can significantly help manage symptoms and improve the quality of life.
Is it safe for someone with EDS to exercise?
Yes, but it's essential to work with a knowledgeable physical therapist to ensure exercises are safe and beneficial.
How often should someone with EDS see a physical therapist?
The frequency depends on the individual's needs and goals. Some might benefit from weekly sessions, while others may need less frequent visits.
Will braces or supports be beneficial?
Braces can be helpful for some individuals to provide joint support. A physical therapist can guide on the appropriate use of these aids.
Can children with EDS benefit from physical therapy?
Absolutely. Early intervention can help children develop strength and good habits that will benefit them throughout their lives.
Ready to Begin Your Journey Towards Better Mobility and Less Pain?
If you or a loved one has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome or issues with hypermobility, our experienced physical therapists are here to guide and support you.
Contact us today to schedule your initial evaluation and take the first step towards improved health and wellbeing.Request An Appointment