Ultrasonic waves are sound waves of a high frequency and are the basis of ultrasound. Ultrasound can be used as a diagnostic tool or for therapeutic purposes. This health blurb is about ultrasound therapy treatment only.
Therapeutic ultrasound is a type a deep tissue heat therapy. It creates heat by using sound waves to vibrate tissue and this vibration generates heat. Heat causes vasodilation and speeds up chemical reactions. So in theory, ultrasound therapy results in an increase of nutrient carrying blood, increase in repair process and increase in waste removal at the treatment site.
However, therapeutic ultrasound is a topic of immense debate as to its beneficial effects. Research is ongoing, with some initial findings contrary to personally reported advantages. Despite the inconsistency, ultrasound continues to be a widely used form of therapy. Some examples of health related situations for which this treatment is being used are:
- herniated disc
- bone fractures
- muscle spasms
- trigger point treatment
- ankylosing spondylitis
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- range of motion problems
- myofascial pain syndromes
- enhanced delivery of drugs ~ stroke
- soft tissue injury healing ~ contusions, strains
- breakup kidney stones, gallstones, bladder stones
Ultrasound therapy treatment is carried out by moving a transducer head over your skin. A special gel is smeared on to help conduct the sound waves.
Therapeutic ultrasound dosage varies in intensity or frequency. Generally, lower frequency is used with deep tissue health conditions and higher frequency for targeted areas closer to the surface.
Ultrasound therapy treatment can even be done at home with your own therapeutic ultrasound system. And don’t forget about gelling.