How to Get the Most Out of Physical Therapy

chiropractor examining a diabetic patient's foot

Physical therapy is a noninvasive treatment modality that is appropriate for all types of musculoskeletal and neurological injuries. It’s also helpful for patients who are recovering from surgery or trying to avoid surgical intervention. If you’ve never been to physical therapy before, there are a few things you should know to help you get the most out of your treatment sessions.

Arrive Prepared

A little preparation can go a long way toward helping you get the most out of physical therapy. Before your appointment, gather together your medical information such as imaging scans and test results. Make a list of your medical conditions and medications, and jot down some notes about prior hospitalizations and surgeries, if applicable. It’s best to arrive a few minutes early in case you need to complete any paperwork. Dress in loose-fitting, comfortable, athletic clothing and wear athletic sneakers.

Communicate Freely

Some patients hesitate to fully verbalize how much pain they’re in, but this is important information that your physical therapist needs to know. Describe exactly how your pain feels, such as whether it’s sharp, dull, throbbing, intermittent, or ongoing. Describe whether certain activities worsen or improve your pain. Your physical therapist will guide you through specific stretches and exercises to rehabilitate your injury. During this process, feel free to speak up if anything worsens your pain or makes it better.

Follow At-Home Recommendations

An important component of physical therapy is the work you perform between your appointments. Since your physical therapist may only see you a couple of times per week, he or she will give you exercises to complete on an ongoing basis. To get the most out of your physical therapy, it’s vitally important that you follow all of these directions, including instructions on staying away from certain activities that might aggravate your injury.

The Houston Spine & Rehabilitation Center combines chiropractic care and physical therapy under one roof for the convenience of our patients. Our accomplished physical therapy team offers both land-based and aquatic therapy.

Dr. Mark Yezak
Mark Yezak, BS, DC, is the founder, chiropractic director, and chief of staff at Houston Spine & Rehabilitation Centers. Offering 25 years of experience. Dr. Yezak is a published author of research papers, books, and journal entries. He is undoubtedly a leader in his field.
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