6 Things To Know Before Your First Physical Therapy Appointment

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Getting the news that you require some sort of physical therapy as a form of rehabilitation and getting back on your feet after an injury can be scary and intimidating, but it is absolutely a good thing. It means that you are healthy enough to start being active again and make a physical effort to finally be back at 100% of your capabilities. Still, it is a difficult road and depending on the type of problem you had, it may take weeks or months of physical therapy before you are actually done.

Do not worry though. Even if this is your first time receiving this type of help, and chances are it is, you should not be scared or overly concerned. In order to help you deal with the first appointment as well as what to expect from it and how to prepare for it, we decided to make this article as a sort of guide. By the end you will have all the info for it to go by as easily and efficiently as possible. To find out more about physical therapy treatments and services and to learn about one of the best providers around, make sure to check out familyfisio.com

1. There Will Be Paperwork

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Nobody likes filling out forms and dealing with overly complicated paperwork all the time, but it is important and necessary for the records and for everyone involved to have an insight into the things you went through. Based on what you write and describe, the professionals will know exactly which route to take in an effort to make you feel better and get your life back. Therefore, comply with however many papers you have to read through and fill out. Questionnaires will help you realize the extent of your future therapy as much as it will help the physicians and nurses who will treat you. 

2. Talking and Assessing the Problem

Once you actually meet with the physician who will be in charge of your progress, you will have to take it back and talk about everything about the injury, how it happened, how much you were active before it, and what your goals are. Anything goes here since any piece of information can help the doctor take better care of you and prescribe the best and most useful therapy you need. The exact origin of the pain must be located so after the talk the physician will proceed to run a bunch of tests that will most probably include you doing some movements with the injured part of your body. For example, the knee problems could have their origin somewhere else in the leg, and shoulder pain may come from the neck

3. Measurements Will Be Introduced

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Once the physician has a better understanding and a general idea of what causes you discomfort or how best to put an end to the pain, they will introduce measurements like motion and strength limitations. Your range of motions will be determined and anything that causes more pain that it is normal will have to stop for a while, or at least be done in a form of exercise.

For all this time you will be actively talking to the physician and they will describe the anatomy and physiology of your injuries so that you know exactly what the problem is and what not to do until you heal. More importantly, this will help you understand what to do in order to heal.

4. A List of Exercises and Appointment Schedule

Not all patients are the same nor are the injuries. Even though two patients could be suffering from the very same problem, their roads to recovery may differ greatly. This is why physical therapy plans in terms of exercises both at home and at the clinic are very individual and custom made. Based on the previous steps and the whole evaluation process, you will likely get a list of recommended exercises that will help you heal.

This will basically be your workout program for the foreseeable future, which can range from just a few weeks with minor injuries to months with more challenging recoveries. In any case, you should absolutely stick to it. In different cases, patients can either to them at home, alone or with a homecare physician, or at the clinic. The latter is often reserved for the more serious therapies that the patients cannot do on their own. Whatever the case may be, you should respect the exercises and the appointments to the fullest.

5. Have Realistic Expectations

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This is something every physical therapy patient needs to understand. The road ahead will be challenging but you will get there eventually. Your injury will heal and it will feel like nothing ever happened. However, patience is key here, as are realistic expectations regarding the time that needs to pass before you heal and the effort you need to put in to make it happen. Without these two factors you will grow very frustrated and impatient which is not something you want on top of your physical limitations during your recovery period. 

6. Emotions are Equally as Important 

Remaining in good spirits and being happy and satisfied during your recovery will boost it and you may be done sooner than expected. The physicians and nurses are in charge of your physical health and recovery but you should absolutely not do them a disservice and be miserable all the time. If you are not willing to make things better, they can hardly happen on their own. Make an effort to feel well and evaluate your life outside of the injury.

Be thankful for other blessings and find time to enjoy things that make you happy. You are probably limited in terms of going places and doing things, so find an alternative that will fill out your day because emotions you will get from it and the positive energy will benefit you. A healthy and recovered body is the one comprised of a healthy mind and a healthy physique, so do not separate the two. You will be at your fullest and strongest only when the two come together.