What is Mirror Therapy?
This is a particular form of physical therapy mainly developed to re-establish the movement in arms and hands who have weakened due to a heart stroke. In this therapy, the therapist make use of the movement of a stronger arm to trick your brain thinking that the weaker arm is moving too. Wondering how?
Get one mirror and put your stronger arm in front of it and weaker arm behind it. Now when you will move your stronger arm, due to its reflection in the mirror it will make you feel that the weaker arm is also moving along. Your brain thinks that both arms are exercising together. Sounds interesting right?
Studies show that this technique actually works. The brain gets influenced to move the weaker arm and get it reconnected to the body eventually. Mirror therapy is also used on the leg and joints.
Exercise or healing at the comfort of home
You will simply need a durable chair and a table along with a stand-alone mirror of adequate size to practice this technique on own. And then follow the above procedure by putting your hands on different side of the mirror. Make sure the mirror you use is large enough such that you can see the your whole arm and hand in it.
Remember, you need not to give any attention to your weaker arm. Instead, focus on the mirror image which will make you feel that your weaker arm is moving, which will trigger your brain and stimulate it to make your weak arm move slowly.
Helps in Stroke Recovery
This therapy is mainly useful to individuals who have recently suffered from heart stroke and thus feeling difficult in regular movement of hand or leg. Many studies claim that this therapy can cure the damaged area of your brain and promote recovery after a stroke. In fact, this treatment has showcased many great improvements in patients who combine it with other therapies or exercises.
Things You Must Consider
Typically, there are no risks involved in trying this therapy at home. However, there are a few important things you must take into account before you start practicing it. For example, make sure the mirror is non-breakable, and the chair and table are not losing their balance. You can focus on the movements when you are least bother of your safety.
Want to get started?
There is no standardized protocol defined for this therapy, but it is strongly recommended that you start out with it under the supervision of a professional therapist. They shall guide you about the activities and movements you should do and how long as well as how often you should perform those activities in a week. Only an experienced clinician can understand the brain function and can help you get rid of pain as well as improve movement. They ensure the right technique is used along with the right set of tools amidst the perfect surrounding.
Swasthya Physiotherapy and Clinic have many years of experience and great insights into mirror therapy and how it can help get back movements after stroke.