While you may think a physical therapy program you have been prescribed is overkill, you will still want to follow through. Why? Because stopping physical therapy programs (or, worse, not even starting one) can lead to further problems down the road.
Why is this the case?
Finding the Root of PT Problems
Many instances of PT are prescribed due to generalized pain or discomfort. While a physician can often identify the current problem, they often won’t get to what caused the problem.
Physical therapists often ask questions during therapy to see if your issue can be improved by simple changes to everyday life. PTs often give comprehensive assessments to their patients to help discover any problems that may not be easy for the untrained eye to see.
Finding a big ‘problem area’ at home or at work can eliminate the need for future PT related to a patient’s current issue. Easy changes like making sure you have a good computer chair for posture can eliminate joint & muscle pain that seems to come out of nowhere.
While finding the root of discomfort can help mitigate future problems, completing a current PT regimen is still important.
Regaining Strength & Motion
The goal of many PT programs is to restore strength & range of motion and to eliminate pain & discomfort. Failing to show up for subsequent therapy sessions can leave affected areas vulnerable to further damage.
PT programs emphasize regular work on affected areas to ensure patients build and maintain strength. This helps mitigate or even eliminate the discomfort associated with a patient’s injury.
This process can help eliminate pain and discomfort associated with the reason for a patient’s PT orders. Not going to PT right away can make the process take longer or become more intensive.
PTs often use the phrase ‘motion is lotion for the joints.’ PT programs emphasize motions that will help ease pain & discomfort.
Should I Wait Until the Pain is Gone to Start PT?
No! Pain or discomfort associated with PT orders may actually get worse if you don’t start a prescribed therapy regimen. You need PT because of pain or discomfort–you should start as soon as possible.
PT canhelp relieve pain and discomfort. Waiting until it ‘goes away’ is a pipe dream. PT sessions help strengthen the body and PTs can help find the source of pain.
Charlin Health Services
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About the Physical Therapy Expert
Anabel is a physical therapist at Charlin Health Services. She started her career as a sports therapist in the Philippines, working on rehabilitating injured athletes. Upon moving to the US, Anabel has worked as a licensed physical therapist at specialized care facilities in Illinois and Texas.
Anabel is an expert in PT for elderly patients recovering from injuries and recent surgeries. She also has experience working as a home healthcare therapist. Anabel has been with Charlin since 2018.