The impacts of a spinal cord injury are far reaching, ranging from the lack or loss of movement to being deprived of sensations of touch, control of bladder and bowel, and sometimes the inability to breathe unaided. Furthermore, multiple pain experiences in areas of the body where they otherwise have little or no feeling is often experienced (SpinalCure Australia., 2020).
Examples of impacts following a spinal cord injury (SpinalCure Australia., 2020)
- Loss or lack of movement
- Loss of bladder and bowel control
- Loss of body temperature control
- Loss of touch sensation
- Loss of sexual function
- Compromise immune function
- Digestive health issues
- Breathing difficulties
- Cardiovascular problems
- Neuropathic pain
- Pressure sores
Collectively, these impacts on one’s physical and mental wellbeing, independence and confidence. Currently there are 20,000 Australians who live with a spinal cord injury, with 1 new injury being diagnosed every day (SpinalCure Australia., 2020).
Our physiotherapy and occupational therapy service recognise these impacts by understanding how it influences the life of a person living with a spinal cord injury. For example, a physiotherapist can provide therapies that foster muscle use and minimise muscle shortening, offer training to build physical function and monitor respiratory function. An occupational therapist can provide strategies to support personal and domestic activities of daily living, support the mobility and comfort using assistive technologies, and assess the home environment.
We offer these supports through various delivery methods, such as clinic-based, home-based or telehealth consultations to provide people living with a spinal cord injury greater choice and control.