While it’s always recommended to consult your doctor for any physical disorder, your doctor will refer a physical therapist to treat injuries and ease joint pain.
Physical therapists are movement specialists trained to keep the musculoskeletal system healthy. PTs are educated to recognize postural habits and biomedical disadvantages of each individual’s unique body.
What Physical Therapists Can Do That You Doctor Simply Can’t
Assess Overall Injury Risk
A full movement screen and postural assessment identifies subtle postural habits that may make you susceptible to injury. Knowing your mechanic weaknesses helps to change your bad postural habits so that you stay injury-free.
Determine the Best Type of Workout for You
Physical therapists cull all the critical information from prior surgeries, diet, lifestyle, body type, body mechanics and posture to determine what activities would best fit your physique. We all have differing muscle imbalances, range of motion and alignment issues. A PT is trained to identity these issues and how to correct bad behavior.
Proper Exercise Programs Speed Up Recovery
Many physical therapists will recommend massage or compression socks, pants or sleeves to help with recovery, in addition to foam rolling and mobility work. The goal is to help improve overall circulation, bringing new, fresh blood into the tissues to promote healing and recovery.
Another new recovery method that has prove to speed recovery is Blood flow restriction (BFR) training, or occlusion training. BFR involves wrapping a compression cuff or Voodoo floss band around the top portion of a limb. BFR restricts your veins from releasing deoxygenated blood from your body back to your heart, which will help activate new cell growth in your muscles. Ask your health care professional if it’s right for you.
Alignment and Postural Corrections
Bad posture can create stiffness in your neck and back, or other areas resulting in weakness and fatigue.
Schedule an appointment with a physical therapist to assess physical movements and posture. Your physical therapist will identify the problems and recommend exercises and stretches to help improve your posture and balance.