There are a lot of reasons why someone should choose to see a physical therapist.
For career athletes and very active people, the idea of seeing a physical therapist isn’t that strange. When you stay very active, injuries are sometimes inevitable, and seeing a physical therapist is arguably the best way to make sure your body heals properly, and quickly, so you can get back into the game.
Unfortunately, insurance issues, as well as many other factors may prevent you from seeing a physical therapist, even if you need one. Forgoing this may cause problems in the future, especially if you are ignoring your injury entirely or just waiting for it to go away on it’s own.
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So, here is a short list of the positive benefits of seeing a physical therapist.
Physical therapists work on movement. Their main goal is to treat issues and injuries that effect the body’s ability to move properly. PT’s typically have a four-year bachelor’s degree on top of a three year doctorate degree (even though the doctorate requirement didn’t exist until 2015, so keep that in mind).
Physical therapists deal with musculoskeletal issues and injuries (meaning muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones). If you have sharp, acute pain from an injury, you should see your regular doctor first. Physical therapy comes after, when the injury has started to heal.
If you have an injury that inhibits your ability to move or exercise normally, a PT can help with use of targeted exercise, activities, and massage.
Physical therapists pay special attention to your limitations, which makes them very valuable. Overdoing it while you are still healing can definitely worsen an injury.
Physical therapists are vital to recovery from surgery. If you have had any kind of orthopaedic surgery, chances are they will recommend a round of physical therapy, which can last as long as 12 months, but is very important to your recovery.
Seeing a physical therapist isn’t just about injuries or surgery. The goal of a PT is to help you learn to move properly, within your limitations. This remains true, whether you have just had surgery on your ACL, or you just haven’t walked more than a half mile in 5 years. Seeing a physical therapist can help, regardless of your situation, because it is never tool late to learn how to move your body.