Did you know that there are 7 misconceptions about physical therapy? While most people understand the benefits of physical therapy, North Boulder Physical Therapy came across a survey from the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) that shows a need to clarify a few things. Here, we’ll break down the misunderstandings and provide some illumination.
Here are the 7 misconceptions about physical therapy according to the APTA.
1. Physical therapy is used only for injuries and accidents.
Truth: Physical therapy is great to help heal from injuries and accidents but it is a lot more. We can help you evaluate and diagnose potential problems before they become more serious conditions. We help people of all ages from babies to seniors. We offer pain management, home exercise programs, post-orthopedic surgery, workers’ compensation, auto injury care, headache treatment, limb and spine mobilization, balance and vestibular rehabilitation, dry needling and cupping, and others. We address many physical issues including post surgery rehab, low back and neck, headaches, lower limbs like hip, knee, ankle and foot, upper limbs like shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand, balance and fall prevention, women’s health and incontinence, occupational injury, pediatric orthopedic problems, athletic injuries, neurological rehab-MS, mild stroke, and Parkinson’s.
2. Surgery is my only option.
Truth: Physical therapy is a viable alternative to surgery in some cases. Of course, we always work with your doctors, but physical therapy often resolves some of the issues so surgery is not needed, from rotator cuff tears and degenerative disk disease to meniscal tears and some forms of knee osteoarthritis.
3. I can do physical therapy by myself.
Truth: A licensed physical therapist can teach and guide you with home exercises and other techniques to help you continue therapy on your own, but you will need the expert care of a physical therapist to provide your physical therapy along with evaluating and diagnosing your condition and developing an individualized plan of care.
4. It is painful to have physical therapy.
Truth: While it is not always comfortable, our therapists work hard to provide a therapy plan that always minimizes your pain. Our goal is to reduce your discomfort as we provide therapies that help you heal, and restore movement and function.
5. Any health care professional is allowed to perform physical therapy.
Truth: No, only licensed physical therapists are allowed to provide physical therapy. While other healthcare professionals provide medical treatments, it is not physical therapy. You must be a licensed physical therapist that is trained and understands physical therapy.
6. A physician referral is needed to see a physical therapist.
Truth: No physician referral is required to see a physical therapist. In every state and the District of Columbia, you can be evaluated and receive treatment without a physician referral or prescription.
7. Your insurance will not cover physical therapy treatments.
Truth: Most insurance policies cover some forms of physical therapy. Physical therapy also helps reduce costs by not needing imaging scans, surgery, and prescription drugs. North Boulder Physical Therapy takes most insurance and Medicare.
It’s important to debunk the 7 misconceptions about physical therapy because so many people can be helped through the treatments and education. You can trust that our professionals at North Boulder Physical Therapy are committed to providing quality care in a comfortable environment. We’ll help you accomplish your goals, whether you wish to restore function and mobility or return to a sport that you love.