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Physical and Aquatic Therapy: Physical Therapy FAQs

What is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy is a health and rehabilitation profession that uses a variety of techniques to develop, maintain, and restore maximum movement and function that may be adversely affected by age, injury, and/or disease. Physical therapy helps improve physical function and fitness level and also helps patients achieve physical goals specifically set for them after they have been injured or undergone surgery so that they can function more efficiently in their daily life.

Do I need to see a doctor before I can receive physical therapy?

Yes. In order to obtain treatment you will need to obtain a prescription from your physician.

What kinds of physical therapy treatment might I receive?

Physical therapy consists of several types of treatments: manual therapy, therapeutic exercise, modalities such as ultrasound, electrical simulation and/or heat or cold therapy, and gait training.

Is physical therapy painful?

For many patients, physical therapy is prescribed with the primary objective being pain relief. In some cases, as with recovery after surgery, some physical therapy techniques may be painful initially. You, your doctor and our therapist are a team so it is important to communicate the intensity, frequency and duration of any pain you may have during therapy. By providing information about pain you may be experiencing, your therapist can utilize a variety of techniques to help maximize your treatment goals, adjust your treatment plan, and keep your pain at a manageable level during treatment.

Am I a candidate for aquatic therapy?

Physical therapy that takes place in a pool can be beneficial for patients experiencing both acute and chronic orthopedic conditions that include, but are not limited to arthritis, back or neck injury, chronic pain, joint replacements, and other orthopedic injuries. Your doctor will determine whether your specific condition can benefit from aquatic therapy.

How can aquatic therapy help me?

Aquatic therapy has several benefits. The buoyancy of water relieves pressure on joints and enables greater pain-free movement while its natural resistance provides an excellent way to increase strength and endurance. Additionally, the warmth of the water can relax muscles and decrease pain.

How long is a typical appointment?

Treatment times vary depending on particular needs. Most appointments will last between 30 minutes to 1 hour, however our office will schedule as much time as necessary for you to meet your goals at any of your appointments if your therapist feels additional time is needed.

How often will I have to come for physical therapy appointments?

Since every patient has unique needs, the frequency and duration of your therapy visits will depend on your specific problem, what your physician feels is appropriate, and the results of your initial evaluation with the physical therapist.

What should I wear to my physical therapy appointments?

You should wear loose, comfortable clothing that does not restrict movement and allows the therapist to get to the involved area. For example, if you are being treated for knee pain, please wear shorts or baggy pants that can be rolled up over the knee.

What do I need to bring with me to my first appointment?

The first time you come for a physical therapy appointment you should bring your insurance card, your prescription for treatment, and a co-pay, if necessary. You should also know your past medical history, including surgical procedures and what medications you are taking. It is most helpful if you can bring a list of your medications, including dosages and how often you are taking them.

What insurances policies do you accept?

We accept most major insurances including Medicare.

How much will my co-pay be for each visit?

The amount of your co-pay will depend on the type of insurance you carry. We provide preauthorization before your first appointment and will notify you as to your copay amount for each visit.