Celebrate Physical Therapy Month
October is National Physical Therapy Month! It is a month to raise awareness about the profession of physical therapy and the many benefits it has to offer. You may be familiar with physical therapy and have even utilized it a few times in your life, but do you fully understand ALL that it has to offer?
Physical therapy is a profession dedicated to helping people find relief from pain, improve mobility and overall functional ability, and live healthier, more physically-able lives. Physical therapists are movement specialists and are trained to view your body as a kinetic chain, recognizing which link in the system is causing pain/dysfunction and providing ways to correct that dysfunctional link. A Physical therapists primary goal is to help you feel your best while participating in the game of life!
Physical Therapy is highly known for its ability to treat orthopedic patients, geriatric patients, and high-level athletes. But there is so much more to the profession that may not be as highly recognized. Below are 10 examples of what physical therapy has to offer:
- Preventative Care– Did you know that you can seek out a physical therapist to help prevent pain and dysfunction? Physical therapists are trained to show you how your body is moving or not moving correctly and what weaknesses are present that may cause pain in the future.
- Sport Specific Care – Did you know that a physical therapist can take a look at your golf swing, running mechanics, baseball throw, and other specific sports movements to analyze what you are doing wrong and what you need to stretch, strengthen or mobilize to be able to fix the mechanics of your sport?
- Oncology Care– Did you know that a physical therapist is a vital part of the recovery process during a series illness such as cancer? Physical therapy can help guide you on your way to regain strength, endurance, and mobility. Physical therapy is great for your body and your mind when recovering from a serious illness.
- Pre-& Postnatal Care– Did you know a physical therapist can help you feel your best during pregnancy and after pregnancy? All of those aches and pains you are experiencing while your body changes and your ligaments loosen can be helped by attending regular physical therapy visits. They can teach you tricks, stretches, and strengthening to help you continue to feel your best during this challenging time.
- Dental Care– Do you suffer from teeth pain, jaw pain (TMJ dysfunction) or headaches? Did you know that physical therapy can be the missing link to the above issues? A physical therapist can teach you how to open and close your mouth correctly and can teach you ways to release muscle around your face, mouth, head, and neck that is due to grinding your teeth or poor posture. Physical therapists provide education and guidance on how posture is affecting your teeth, jaw, head, and neck and can offer solutions on what to do to fix this.
- Balance Issues– Have you noticed that your balance isn’t quite as good as it used to be? Do you feel unsteady on your feet and are more cautious about falling? You can start a course of physical therapy to work on your balance deficits and help you regain strength and proprioception in your lower legs to feel safer and more steady negotiating through your community.
- Incontinence Care– Did you know that a physical therapist can help with pelvic floor dysfunction which leads to incontinence or pain “down there”? Certain physical therapists are trained to perform intravaginal examinations and can help retrain the pelvic floor muscles that are pertinent to normal bowel and bladder functions.
- Work Ergonomics – Did you know that a physical therapist can analyze your desk, computer, and workstation and provide you ways of making your ergonomic set up more pleasing to your body? You spend multiple hours at work each day, shouldn’t you make sure your body is in the best position possible during this time to prevent chronic injuries from occurring?
- Developmental Delays – Did you know that physical therapy can help your baby reach his/her milestones? Many children have difficulty performing tummy time, sitting up, crawling, walking and or jumping. Certain physical therapists are specialized to treat exactly that in your newborn baby or growing child.
- Respiratory Care – Did you know a physical therapist can help assist you with your breathing and heart issues? Whether if you are diagnosed with a respiratory disease or just having difficulty catching your breath while exercising, physical therapy can help battle your deconditioned lungs and heart and get you back on track.
These are just a few areas that physical therapists are trained to help you with. Chances are with any ache pain or dysfunction that you are experiencing, there is a physical therapist experienced specifically in that area for you. Physical therapy should be thought of as the first line of defense and the safest avenue for pain management. Before jumping to opioids or just giving up, find a physical therapist and book an appointment. You can find a quality physical therapy clinic that is right for you and schedule an appointment with ease through the BetterPT website or BetterPT app. Make sure to take care of yourself today and make October your healthiest month yet!