Physical therapists are often identified by their ability to help people with injury rehabilitation, but did you know that they can help you prevent an injury before it occurs? Although injury rehabilitation is an important component of physical therapy, these health care providers are able to provide services far beyond the injured population.
The Physical therapists are experts in the way the human body moves. They are able to provide a unique perspective on purposeful, precise, and efficient movement across the lifespan by evaluating the locomotion system through their experience of locomotion and locomotion. Through this assessment, therapists can design a customized, integrated care plan to achieve goal-oriented outcomes for the individual.
So the question becomes, beyond rehabilitation injuries, what else can physical therapists do and benefit you?
Injury Prevention, Be Proactive!
Physical therapists can help individuals become proactive by identifying imbalances in the body and risk factors that may predispose them to injury or impair their physical performance. By evaluating and treating these factors, injuries can be prevented. In addition, proactive strength and balance exercises can help facilitate the ability to perform daily activities and participate in recreational, community, and sports activities.
Preparing people before surgery
This is also referred to as pre-qualification or ‘pre-qualification’. Research has shown positive pre-rehabilitation effects for patients undergoing artificial knee and hip replacement. Patients who perform a supervised exercise program that includes strength, range of motion, flexibility, aerobic exercise and balance exercises before surgery are less likely to require inpatient rehabilitation and often recover at a faster rate. In addition to improving the rate of successful surgical outcomes, pre-qualification is also an opportunity to build a relationship of trust with your physical therapist. Furthermore, it provides potential patients with the opportunity to ask questions related to postoperative management and to learn about the clinic and associated staff.
Promote health, fitness and general wellness
This usually focuses on building strength, flexibility, balance, and endurance. Many therapists use a whole-body approach to treat a patient’s unique orthopedic or neuromuscular condition and improve their functional ability for daily tasks, work, and fitness/sports activities. Some therapists are extending their education and skills to become board-certified specialists in orthopedics, women’s health, geriatrics, and cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, to name a few. Other areas of specialization in physical therapy include pediatrics, sports, electrophysiology, neuroscience, and oncology.
Improve athletic performance
Sticking to an athlete’s training program can be very helpful in preventing injuries. Another advantage of this type of program is the improvement of athletic performance. These programs often include appropriate warm-up exercises to perform before games and practices. They usually have a strong focus on fine body mechanics and special sports movements.
Helps reduce the risk of falls
Physical therapists are trained to work closely with individuals who have a history of falls or who feel unsteady on their feet. Working on specific balancing activities and improving core strength will help reduce the risk of falls and promote independence.
Chronic pain education and management
Physical therapists help people with chronic pain with exercises that often focus on improving strength, flexibility, and endurance through a graduate program. This can help reduce pain, improve sleep, and enhance the ability to participate in social, work, school, and recreational activities.
The therapist will also teach you the mechanism of “chronic” pain, how it differs from “acute” pain, and how to control the pain.
Posture and ergonomic evaluation
With technology these days, many of us frequently use computers, phones, and tablets and are often unaware of our situation while doing so. Looking at your phone can put up to 10 pounds of weight on your head and neck, which can cause many orthopedic problems. Physical therapists can help teach you what proper posture means and how to implement it in your daily life. In addition, they can help with how to properly set up your office for office workers and with body mechanics for people with more physical functions.
We only have one body, so why not hire experts in the human motion system to keep things running? Think of it as if you brush your teeth regularly. Many people usually go to the dentist one to two times a year to prevent oral health problems and to identify potential problems. Your physical therapist can provide the same kind of service, by keeping you mobile and doing the things you love to do!
If you have questions about how physical therapy can help you or someone you care about, please do not hesitate to book an appointment to see our Thumbay Rehab specialists today.