Rehab of injuries can be complex. Maybe you found that, too, during your recovery? Over time, acronyms guiding management of soft tissue injuries have changed to reflect our expanding and evolving understanding of these complexities. Evidence is limited for the treatments encouraged by the above acronyms - especially for the stages of healing that last beyond the first hours and days of an injury.
In 2019 the British Journal of Sports Medicine proposed a NEW APPROACH to managing soft tissue injuries - and optimise recovery - by giving PEACE a chance and remembering we all need some LOVE.
These acronyms cue us - both the injured person and the health professional - for how to take good care in recovery across the rehabilitation continuum. From immediate care (PEACE) to subsequent management (LOVE). Some things haven’t changed from the above acronyms, but can you spot the difference?
For the first days after an injury, do no harm and let peace guide your approach:
Protectionavoid activities and movements that increase pain. Elevationkeep the injured part higher than your heart as often as possible. Avoid anti-inflammatoriesavoid these medications. Avoid icing. Compressionuse elastic bandage or taping to reduce swelling. Educationlet your body do what is natural for healing: avoid unnecessary passive treatments and medical investigations.
Following the early stages of repair, soft tissues need love:
Loadgradually return to normal activities using pain as your guide. Listen to your body - it will tell you when it’s safe to increase load. Optimismcondition your brain for optimal recovery by being confident and positive. Vascularisationchoose pain-free cardiovascular activities to increase blood flow to repairing tissues. Exerciserestore mobility, strength and proprioception by adopting an active approach to recovery.
PEACE & LOVE underscores the importance of educating patients and addressing psychosocial factors to enhance recovery. This means the person with the injury is treated, rather than treating the injury. In addition, while anti-inflammatories show benefits on pain and function, these acronyms flag the potentially harmful effects of anti-inflammatories on optimal tissue repair.
So next time you come a cropper, how about you try some PEACE and LOVE instead?!
We’d love to hear your war stories, particularly how peace and love helped you win the battle! Share your experiences here, send us a message or tag us in your post - when you’re showing your injuries some PEACE and LOVE.
If you would like more advice or support with your injury come and see one of our wonderful physiotherapists- give the clinic a call on 8682 6665 or hit us up on Facebook or Insta today!