Physio helps most LTC residents maintain mobility, but Joan Taylor has improved hers

Frost Manor resident Joan Taylor and physiotherapy assistant Debbie Ellison are seen here taking a walk.

Frost Manor physiotherapy assistant Debbie Ellison says Joan is walking ‘almost perfect’ with her walker

Since she started participating in Frost Manor’s physiotherapy program, resident Joan Taylor has improved her mobility and her quality of life, says Achieva Health physiotherapy assistant Debbie Ellison.

Debbie, who works with the Lindsay long-term care home’s residents several times a week, says what makes Joan unique is that while most people maintain their mobility through physiotherapy, Joan has increased hers.

“When I first started walking with her, she was good walking on a straightaway, but when it came time to make a turn with a walker, she was having balance difficulties,” Debbie tells The OMNIway.

“But now when we’re walking, she’s almost perfect, so I have really seen an improvement with Joan. … It’s not very often that you get an improvement, so even maintaining the level they’re at is a success.”

When they’re working together, Joan and Debbie focus mainly on walking as well as balancing exercises. Joan and Debbie walk together about three times a week. Joan’s balancing exercises have her standing and holding on to a rail while she lifts one leg and moves it front to back and side to side, using her standing leg for balance.

Physiotherapy programs at Frost Manor are created to meet the needs of individual residents by Achieva Health physiotherapist Charu Patel. Debbie then leads residents in the exercise program Charu develops.

Keeping long-term-care home residents active through physiotherapy programs helps reduce the risk of falls and enhances quality of life in other ways, Debbie says.

“(Physiotherapy) is really important; we want everyone to stay with strong muscles,” she says. “When people are able to stand and walk, all the organs work better and everything works better, so our goal is to keep the muscles strong and all of the organs working well.”

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