Having to undergo spinal cord injury and the trauma associated with it has a perfect effect on your strength, sensation, and other body functions. If you have undergone or undergoing such an injury then you wouldn’t deny the fact that it will impact your social, emotional, and physical well-being. But undergoing treatments and rehabilitation can help people recover from injuries and lead quality independent lives.
The spinal cord helps in transferring messages from your brain to other parts of the body and vice-versa. One can feel pain and be able to move their limbs due to the presence of their spinal cords. Due to an injury caused to the spinal cord, there can be permanent or temporary loss of sensation and mobility.
The two factors due to which your ability to control your limbs after an injury can be hampered are:
- The place where an injury took place
- The intensity of an injury
The severity of an injury can be classified as follows:
- Complete: In this category, your ability to control the sensory and motor skills are lost in the region below the spinal cord injury.
- Incomplete: In this section, if you notice the partial movement of your sensory and motor skills below the affected area then your injury is incomplete.
The spinal cord injury may result in the following signs & symptoms:
- Loss of movement
- Loss of sensation ( which includes the inability to feel the heat, cold and touch)
- Loss of bladder and bowel control.
- Difficulty in breathing, coughing and clearing the congestion in your lungs.
- High intensity of pain occurred due to the damage in the nerves present in your spinal cord.
- Extensive back pain
- Extensive weakness or lowered muscular strength.
- Paralysis of the body part below the injured part.
- Partial or complete loss of sensation on your hands, legs
- Hampered balance and walking ability.
WHAT’S THE TREATMENT?
Undergoing a rehabilitation process can be a long and frustrating process which totally depends on the intensity of your injury. The entire duration of the rehab therapy will depend on the intensity of the injury and how regularly do you undergo the rehab process. Well-equipped multidisciplinary nursing care will provide you the best rehabilitation facility and enhance your recovery process. The nursing care team will have a team of therapists who will help reduce and regain mobility and lost functions through the rehabilitation process and will take care of your diet and nutrition as well.
The physical conditioning program will include exercises that will help in increasing muscular strength and help relearn basic tasks like walking, moving hands, or writing which is hampered due to the spinal cord injury.
ROLE OF PHYSICAL THERAPY
A physical therapist will help you in improving mobility, helps in daily functioning activities. Undergoing this therapy will also reduce the risks of complications that had occurred during the time of the injury.
The physical Therapy rehab will include:
- Strength training
- Cardiovascular exercises
- Respiratory conditioning
- Mobility Training
ROLE OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY
We often take the simple skills which we use in our daily lives for granted. People who are undergoing spinal cord injury have to relearn their skills and even find new ways of working out things for themselves. They find it difficult to work out simple activities like dressing, bathing, washing, eating, or even performing their household chores, and that’s when occupational therapists come in to help them attain all of these activities through the rehabilitation process. While aiming to lead a normal life after a spinal cord injury its important to maintain a healthy lifestyle.