What is physical therapy?
Physical therapy uses exercise and other treatments (modalities) to relieve pain and rehabilitate your body. You can benefit from physical therapy if you need to improve function and mobility or want to prevent or limit physical disability.
How does physical therapy improve my health?
Physical therapists are extensively trained in many techniques proven to promote physical changes in your body. These changes improve your health by:
- Boosting blood circulation
- Accelerating healing
- Decreasing inflammation
- Rebuilding muscle strength
- Improving your range of motion
- Promoting flexibility
- Reducing stress
- Improving balance
Movement, better circulation, and diminished inflammation are the fundamental changes for pain relief.
When would I need physical therapy?
Physical therapy supports your recovery and rehabilitation from orthopedic surgery, musculoskeletal injuries, degenerative diseases, and age-related changes in your muscles and bones.
There’s a long list of injuries and conditions that improve with physical therapy. These are a few examples:
- Chronic pain
- Low back pain
- Knee pain
- ACL injuries
- Hamstring injuries
- Herniated discs
- Rotator cuff injuries
When pain, disease, injury, or surgery forces you to stop using part of your body, you immediately start losing muscle strength. One study reported that patients lost one-fourth to one-third of the muscle strength in their leg after it was immobilized for two weeks. Consequently, physical therapy is essential for restoring your strength.
What treatments might I receive through physical therapy?
Physical therapists complete a thorough assessment before developing your care plan. This list shows some of the primary treatment categories. Each category includes many exercises and healing techniques, allowing your physical therapy to be customized.
- Passive and active exercises
- Flexibility and stretching exercises
- Strength training
- Endurance training
- Balance training
- Therapeutic massage
- Soft tissue mobilization
- Body mechanics and gait training
- Coordination and balance exercises
Your care plan is always based on your goals. For example, that could mean regaining balance so you can walk without falling or focusing on pain relief and improving joint stiffness.
If you plan to return to competitive athletics, your plan includes exercises that build the skills needed for your sport. The team works with you to restore your optimal performance.
Call the nearest North Valley Orthopedic Institute office or connect online today to request a physical therapy evaluation.