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Avala Physical Therapy
Physical therapy is not only for those recovering from surgery, an accident, or sports injuries. It offers benefits any time someone experiences pain, weakness or mobility concerns. Here are tips to get the most out of physical therapy:
BE A GOOD HISTORIAN
Think about goals for your treatment. Are you seeking physical therapy in order to return to a sport or activity you love – or even the ability to walk your dog without pain? Setting goals will help determine the course of your treatment.
At your first physical therapy appointment, the therapist will do an examination to see what’s going on with your body and will ask questions to learn when your pain started, or in the case of surgery, what lead to your surgery. It is helpful when you can say when your pain started since certain conditions are more easily identified if a timeline is given.
COMMIT TO YOUR APPOINTMENTS
The number of your physical therapy visits will vary depending on how complex or severe your injuries or surgery is. A minor injury may only require two or three visits, while severe injuries may include 20 or more visits over several weeks or months. How quickly you progress will depend on whether you are attending your appointments and completing your therapist’s recommended homework or exercises.
DO THE HOMEWORK
When it comes to physical therapy, you will have to do some work outside of the visit. The exercises your therapist recommends are to help improve muscle strength and joint mobility and often require repetition and consistency over time to see results. If you don’t follow the directions, it is difficult to know why your symptoms may not be improving – and as a result, it’s difficult to know how to adjust your treatment plan.
FIND A DEDICATED SPACE TO DO THE WORK
Having a dedicated space to do you exercises will help you stick to them. Whether it’s a gym or a spare room in your home, having the space to move and focus on your exercises can help.
You may be tempted to skip your physical therapy appointment when you’re experiencing pain. But that is precisely when you should go. Your therapist is highly skilled in assessing and effectively treating pain and can adjust the treatment for the day to help.
SPEAK UP AND ASK QUESTIONS
You may think an ache or pain is normal, and not mention it to your therapist. But sometimes even the smallest details can help solve the largest problem. Make sure you ask questions as your therapist will want to make sure your concerns are addressed and that you are comfortable with your treatment plan moving forward.
STICK TO THE TOPIC
It is common for patients, like yourself, to come in for one problem and then mention another problem that is bothering them. While your therapist can treat multiple areas during a single visit, a new issue is most likely going to need its own evaluation to determine the best course of treatment. It’s also possible it will need to be pre-approved through your insurance company so the therapist will often recommend scheduling a separate time to evaluate what might be going on.
KEEP THE LINES OF COMMUNICATION OPEN
If you have questions about your homework on at home exercise plan always feel comfortable calling your physical therapy office.
KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK
The biggest risk of injury is a previous history of an injury. Once treatment has concluded, your therapist can recommend how to prevent injuries in the future through exercise plans, etc.