NEUROMUSCULAR RE-EDUCATION

WHAT IS NEUROMUSCULAR RE-EDUCATION?

Neuromuscular Re-education Treatment Process

Neuromuscular Re-education consists of methods used by physical therapists to restore the interaction between the muscles, the brain, and the nerves used for them to communicate with each other. It aims to improve the body's movement, strength, balance, and function.

For the body to create movements, the nerves and muscles work together. Where the nerves transmit signals between the muscles and the brain. Telling the body when, where, and how fast it should move. Scientists believe that over time, nerve tracts are reinforced and muscle movement patterns are learned and stored in your memory. An example of this would be remembering how to go up steps and automatically knowing how to adjust your movements for tall or short steps.

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Neuromuscular Re-education Treatment Program

Muscle movement patterns are altered when nerves or muscles undergo damage or injury. This can result from trauma, medical infirmities, and neurological conditions, such as stroke and traumatic brain injury.

Neuromuscular re-education requires an understanding of the relationship between stabilizing and mobilizing muscles, proper sequencing, and optimal biomechanical motion patterns for a variety of daily tasks, occupational activities, and sports-specific physical performance.

How Does Neuromuscular Re-education
Treatment Program Works?

how it works

The programs for neuromuscular re-education require tasks to be broken down into their most simple single-joint movement patterns. These patterns are developed through proper alignment, breathing, and muscle stabilization in non-weight bearing positions using manual or mechanical assistance.

As the specific single-joint movement pattern is mastered without symptoms, the exercise becomes complicated and might include one or more of the following advances:
Multi-joint movement
Non-linear motion (circular or diagonal)
Weight-bearing postures
Proprioceptive challenges (eyes closed, unstable surfaces, etc…)
Progressive resistance
Variable speeds and durations

The Solution

An assortment of techniques, tools, and apparatuses can be used to provide neuromuscular re-education and movement training. Examples of this would be motion and task modeling, pressure biofeedback, one-to-one instruction, taping and bracing, tactile cueing, audiovisual aids, imagery, dumbbells, EMG, balance boards, and other accessories.

The end goal with these types of approaches is to move a patient through a process that begins with:

Unconscious Movement Incompetence

They don’t know what they don’t know, which relates to efficiency and economy, to

Conscious Movement Incompetence

They know what they don’t know, to

Conscious Movement Competence

They learn through practice and repetition, and finally,

Unconscious Movement Competence (Mastery)

Signifies an integrated pattern of task performance that is safe and injury-resistant.

NEUROMUSCULAR RE-EDUCATION TREATMENT PROCESS

  1. On your primary evaluation, your physical therapist will ask you about your symptoms and medical history.

  2. The therapist will then examine your posture, balance, and joint movement.

  3. Measurements will be taken to see the capability of your joints and the strength of your muscles.

  4. Once done, your physical therapist will assess your balance and posture while you are standing and sitting. At this stage, you should state your concerns and goals.

  5. A neuromuscular re-education treatment plan will be outlined based on your initial functioning.
The treatment program will consist of repetitive movements, posturing, and stimulation. They are designed to reinforce nerve signals for functional movements. It is speculated that when the nerve signals are “re-trained” and appropriate muscle movements are repeated several times, movement patterns become automatic again. Neuromuscular re-education is usually done simultaneously with other types of treatment to develop functional muscle movement at a faster rate.

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