There are many reasons why people go to physical therapy. If you have an illness or injury then your regular doctor may want you to see a physical therapist. If you have never gone to one before, you are probably wondering what you can expect. This brief guide on physical therapy can help you to learn more about physical therapy, why people go, what to expect, and other information.
Reasons why physical therapy can be different for each patient
When you go to physical therapy, your physical therapy appointments may go completely different than other patients. If you are new to physical therapy, you may find yourself wondering why it is that you are being asked to ride a stationary bike and work out on weight machines while another patient is being given a massage. The reason for this is because the physical therapist will come up with your treatment plan after considering your reasons for needing therapy, your current condition, your prognosis, and other information. This means each patient will have therapy sessions that take all these things into consideration and that help that patient to work toward their specific goals.
Examples of reasons for going to physical therapy
- Temporary pain relief: Whether someone's condition is expected to be temporary or chronic, there are usually ways physical therapy can help. There may be some cases in which the physical therapist will always focus on helping to temporarily relieve pain by way of massages or electronic stimulation. This may happen when a patient's condition can't really be improved upon using any other forms of physical therapy.
- Chronic pain relief: There will also be cases where the physical therapist will have the patient workout by doing things like specific exercises or stretches to strengthen muscle groups that can help support afflicted areas to decrease pain over time. For example, if you have herniated discs in your back, then your physical therapy may include workouts to strengthen back muscles which can help decrease the pain in your back as your muscles are able to compensate more for your injury. However, even physical therapy that tends to be more focused on something like building strength can also include things like massages or electric stimulation to also help with short term pain.
- Surgery prevention: Many times, surgeries can't be avoided. However, there are also a lot of times when they may be avoided by having a patient go to physical therapy, if the physical therapy proves to be successful. The physical therapist will determine what would need to be accomplished to avoid surgery and come up with a plan to help the patient achieve that goal. Also, physical therapy can be done to get a patient to a better physical condition before they undergo surgery in order to help their recovery from that surgery be easier on them and even help them to recover much faster.