Interview with Physiotherapist Filipa Galvão

Skin at Heart has the pleasure to interview Filipa Galvão, a physioterapist with a wide experience. Throughout her career, Filipa has treated all kinds of muscular problems, especially in athletes. In this interview, we will understand better the role of physiotherapy in wellbeing.

1 – What are the main issues that you usually treat? What are the main causes of those issues?

The main issues I treat are sports injuries and back pain, especially cervical pain (neck) and low back pain. The causes can be varied, but most of sports injuries are related with the lack of warm up or cooling down when the athlete begins and ends the training, self-drills (when the person is not backed up by proper monitoring and excessive load). In the case of back injuries, I would say that – mostly – the main responsible is sedentary life style and things as bad posture, excess load and stress.

 2 – What is the main procedure or the most adequate treatment to cure or heal this type of issues?

In terms of physiotherapy there is a wide variety of treatments but the hand of the physiotherapist is the main thing. Most of the times, thermotherapy (hot/cold), electrotherapy and adequate exercise solve the problem.

3 – What is necessary that people do in their daily lives to be aware and prevent this type of injuries?

This is one of the main subjects and I’m not giving any news here: but I need to reinforce the idea of practicing physical exercise. It is essential! In my opinion, no sport is better or worse than the other, they’re just different. When my patients ask me what sport should they do, I advice them according to the one that comes closer to the specific problem they are facing, but the truth is that in terms of prevention for general health, the best sport is the one the person loves and that enjoys doing, so that it is possible to keep it up and incorporate it in the daily life.

Food is another important subject. There is already enough information available in this field, but food habits are not only related with body weight as some seem to think.

Other than that, people should stop postponing problems (the idea of “oh this goes away” or “in the internet: just put some ice”). Lots of times, when they come to my office something that could be solved in one or two sessions became complicated and it may take 10 to 15 sessions to complete the treatment. Plus they have suffered pain or discomfort during that time, unnecessarily.

Bottom line, look for accredited professionals to get advice and to get treatment before you make mistakes.

4 – What are the main changes of behaviours that you usually recommend for most of the issues that you treat?

To adopt warm up/cool down in case of sports, stretching, specific muscle reinforcement, correct the posture, natural supplements and therapeutic massages or regular massages.

5 – How can essential oils assist physiotherapists and contribute in an effective way for the patients wellbeing?

Essential oils can help physiotherapists in different areas from wellbeing to pain and inflammation. Physiotherapy can use essential oils in massages with exceptional results, depending on the type of massage and its goal, the professional must chose the most adequate essential oil. In Aromatherapy through the diffuser or inhalation in cases when the patients have difficulty relaxing, when the pathology is associated with stress, or in the treatment of skin conditions such as scars or even respiratory pathologies both in pediatrics and in adults. Essential oils can benefit Physiotherapy, as well as general health.

6 – Any last words you would like to say to Skin at Heart readers when it comes to health?

Current societies are very turned to the immediate effect (they want a pill or a drug that treats the issue and makes the symptom go away at once) and to laziness (is there something or someone that can do it for me?!). In my opinion – and I add that this is very personal – there is no easy thing and I hope the bill one has to pay sooner or later it’s not twice as much. Adopt healthy behaviours, look for natural supplements, instead of chemicals, and prevent instead of treating. Do sports, eat “WELL” and be happy!

I would also like to congratulate Skin at Heart for the work it has been developing, as well as for the useful information that it’s making available for the readers. We need more people like this, who use their own time and their own self for a better society.

Skin at Heart thanks Filipa Galvão for the availability for this clarifying interview where she helped us understand better some of the routines we can implement in our daily lives to contribute for general wellness, particularly when it comes to muscles and the skeleton.

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