Why Choosing Physical Therapy in 2022 Can Help Achieve Your Goals
By: Richard Gardner, PT, DPT: Board Certified in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy
Happy New Year to our patients, friends, and readers who accidentally stumbled across this blog post. I hope and pray 2022 is the year you can meet your goals and become better in all aspects of your life. I have never been one for New Year’s Resolutions. I don’t like the idea of making January 1 the date to start something new. In addition, most people do not stick with a New Year’s Resolution. Most sources I looked at showed under 10% of people stick to their resolutions. However, I do believe in goals to enhance ourselves physically, mentally, and spiritually that we should constantly be making. We should always stive to be a better version of ourselves the longer we live. For this post I am going to discuss how physical therapy can help you become better physically and why it is the best choice for recovering from physical pain, loss of function, or inability to start/complete a fitness program, I encourage you to read this post in its entirety. I may come off a little passionate in this one, but that is for your own good and best for the profession of physical therapy.
If you are like most patients we have treated in clinic, you think physical therapy is a bunch of mat table exercises, maybe a massage, ultrasound (I pray not,) and/or the electrical stim thing with a hot or cold pack. You feel it is a waste of your time and your healthcare dollars, because let’s face it, healthcare is expensive. Maybe you have had a terrible experience and were treated by a physical therapist who really didn’t care about your outcome or were passed between so many staff members you didn’t know who was really in charge of your plan of care. You spent a few sessions before you quit and left feeling that was a giant and expensive waste of time! To that patient, I want to say sorry. I want to say sorry that you were NOT treated in a manner to maximize your outcomes and that you did not get results. HOWEVER, I also want you to know that time you spent in “physical therapy” was not what physical therapy was intended to be! Physical therapy is and should be so much more and not every clinic is treated equal and you need to pick a place that knows the difference.
Physical therapy should be the number 1 pick for people when recovering from injury to arms, legs, necks, backs, and even the TMJ (jaw.) We are so much more than mat table exercises, massage, ultrasound, and/or the electrical stim thing with a hot or cold pack. Not that those items are never used or bad….well maybe the ultrasound sucks, but we do so much more. Your care is meant to be delivered by a highly trained physical therapist and you are NOT meant to then be handed over to techs and assistants for all treatment sessions. Your therapist should be hands on and utilizing manual therapy skills that includes dry needling, joint mobilizations, soft tissue work (massage, cupping, instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization) and even “cracking your back and neck”……(yes, we do that too but see you for more than 5 minutes.) Your exercises should be appropriate, safe, and effective. You should be challenged and not bored. Your PT clinic should be using exercise to bring about the needed tissue adaptations and create results. You should conclude your care with physical therapy with only two possible outcomes. Number 1, you met all your goals, and you can now live your life better and with less pain. Or number 2, you achieved the highest therapeutic results and may need a specialist referral for possible surgical intervention or other treatment avenue. You should never leave feeling you got “nothing” out of it. If you are going to a clinic and you feel that way….leave now and find a new one.
We are passionate about this at Specialized Physical Therapy and it is our mission to provide the best physical therapy care to our patients to help enrich their lives. When you come to us you will not be passed around between providers but will know who is taking care of you. We offer highly skilled dry needling, manual therapy, cupping, instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization, blood flow restriction training, and highly skilled exercises that will bring about change. I do not apologize for telling patients that your experience with us will be better than any therapy you have had before. We have the best staff to help you achieve your desired goals! 2022 is here and let this be the year you take control of you pain or achieve a higher level of fitness. If you are still on the fence, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will be more than happy to set up a meeting with you and discuss how we can help. Happy New Year and expect to do great things!