Click the tabs below for answers to the questions we get asked the most!
Why should I try Physical Therapy?
In many cases, pain is associated with improper movement in the body and often times correcting that improper movement decreases your pain. Physical therapists are the movement specialists in the healthcare industry. It is our job to assess your movement and how it affects your pain as pain can change the way you move. This incorrect movement can increase your pain by producing excess stress on the body, causing it to break down and start hurting. This can become a vicious cycle where pain causes incorrect movement, which leads to more pain. The physical therapist will perform a thorough evaluation of your movement and determine what is moving correctly and incorrectly and how that affects or is caused by your pain. The best treatment is one tailored to your weakness and deficiencies rather than the “cookie-cutter” treatment approach where patients get the same ten exercises to treat their pain. In most cases, correcting improper movement will eliminate your pain, or at the very least, significantly decrease your pain.
Why should I try Physical Therapy again?
Many patients have had an unsuccessful bout of physical therapy in the past. This can often be the result if the treatment was not tailored to the patient’s specific problems, or the painful area was treated but their improper movements were not corrected. For example, if every patient with low back pain gets the same regimen of exercises, then the treatment is not being tailored effectively to get the best result. Or, if a patient has low back pain which was treated previously, but treatment neglected to correct a stiff arthritic hip, the low back pain may not truly resolve and the pain will likely return. Physical therapy can be highly specialized and customized to your specific condition and it should be. If physical therapy did not work the first time, it is worth trying again with a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs.
What should I expect from Physical Therapy?
There are many things that make a great therapy experience, but the following list should be included in your experience:
A thorough evaluation consisting of a history, medical review, and hands on physical exam.
An explanation of the findings of the evaluation and the treatment plan moving forward.
Hands on techniques performed by the physical therapist.
A specific exercise program consisting of exercises, reps, sets and number of times per day along with an explanation of what the exercise is accomplishing.
Re-evaluation by the physical therapist each visit to assess movement so treatment can be adjusted or modified based on the patient’s response to the last visit.
Detailed discharge plans. Once therapy is over, the patient should know what to do to progress activities and how to respond should the patient experience a flare-up or symptom regression.
Do I need a physician referral to come to physical therapy?
With the enactment of Alabama House Bill 163, Alabama became the 47th state to gain some sort of direct access for physical therapy services. This means you can refer yourself to physical therapy. You can schedule your appointment without a physician referral and we are able to do a thorough evaluation. We will send the summary to your physician. Once we receive that summary back with your doctor’s signature, we are then able to schedule your following appointments and continue your physical therapy plan.
How long does an appointment last?
For your first visit with us, you should expect to be here for an hour to an hour and a half. Each subsequent appointment is typically around an hour.
What should I bring to my first appointment?
If you have a doctor’s referral, be sure to bring that with you on your initial evaluation. We will also need your insurance card(s), a photo ID, and a list of your current medications. If your insurance requires a co-payment or deductible/coinsurance, you will need to bring that as well. Bring your planner or appointment book so that you are able to schedule your follow-up appointments.
What should I wear to my appointment?
We recommend loose-fitting, comfortable clothing that will allow your therapist easy access to your affected body part.