Who Can Benefit from Physical Therapy?

Many people wonder if they are a candidate for physical therapy, or if physical therapy can help their problem.  This is an easy question to answer. Most people can benefit from physical therapy, whether their condition is something as simple as an ankle sprain, or as complex as a neurological disorder.

Movement is a key to optimal living and quality of life for all people. The ability to move freely and without pain or restriction extends beyond health, to every person's ability to participate in and contribute to society.  Simply stated, physical therapists are considered movement specialists for musculoskeletal and neurological disorders.  Here are three examples of how physical therapy can benefit you.

Improving Mobility and Motion. Motion is essential to your quality of life. Whether it is an everyday task such as chores around the house, performing a sporting activity, or an essential activity such as performing a job function, a physical therapist can help your experience improved mobility and function. Physical therapists also help prevent injuries and promote a healthy lifestyle by improving strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination.

Providing a Conservative Alternative to Surgery. While surgery can be the best course of treatment for certain diagnoses, there is evidence to indicate that physical therapists can offer an alternative. Considering conservative options to surgery is a hallmark of good care. Physical therapy is one of these options for many individuals. When there is a need for surgery, physical therapists can enhance the outcome both before and after surgery. Additionally, for those individuals whose health conditions prevent surgery from being an option, physical therapists can be invaluable in helping them improve or maintain the quality of their lives.

Managing Pain Effectively Without Long-Term Use of Medication: A physical therapist can help patients control pain, often reducing the need for long-term use of medications. Studies reveal that individuals who receive physical therapy experience greater improvement in function with less pain. While recognizing that medication is an essential component in the management of many acute and chronic conditions, physical therapists can provide an alternative to the long-term use of medications for the management of pain and certain other health conditions.