Is physical therapy (or PT) right for you? If you're not sure whether this type of treatment can help you to overcome an injury, heal after a surgery, or cope with a chronic condition, take a look at the questions to ask right now.
What Does Your Medical Provider Say?
Does your doctor, a specialist, or another medical provider think PT sessions can help you? The decision to seek PT treatment is a personal one. But it's not a choice you should make without the guidance of a professional in the field. The provider who has already treated your injury, illness, or other health-related issue knows your medical history and current condition. Not only can they recommend PT as part of a treatment plan, but they can also suggest physical therapists to work with.
Do You Want to Avoid Surgery?
Some patients prefer non-surgical treatments. If your doctor (or another medical provider) doesn't feel that surgery is absolutely necessary and you would rather explore other options, PT is an alternative to seriously consider. PT won't require anesthesia, may not make you miss work, and could reduce overall healthcare costs.
Do You Need Surgery?
Even though PT is a surgical alternative, you can use it in combination with a procedure. Pre-surgical rehabilitation can help you to prepare for the procedure, build strength/range of motion, get healthy, and create an activity routine that you can follow after surgery.
Along with pre-surgical PT, your medical provider may recommend post-procedure rehab. This can help you to recover in less time than you would otherwise. It may also reduce the need for strong pain medications and may make it easier to get back to your normal daily activities.
Is Medication Necessary to Help You Heal?
Did the doctor prescribe a pain medication that makes you groggy or interferes with your ability to function at work, care for your child, or do just about anything else? If you don't want to take prescription medication for your injury, chronic conditions, or another physical issue, PT can help. Rehabilitation can alleviate discomfort, increase range of motion, help to build strength, and make it possible to get through your day without severe pain.
In some cases, a combination of medication and PT can help patients improve in a way that prescriptions alone can't. According to a study published in the Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine, participants who had medical and PT treatment had better physical outcomes than those who were only given medication.
For more information, reach out to a physical therapist in your area.