10 Tips on How to Be a Good Physical Therapy Patient
Are you struggling with an injury or having persistent pain? Have you thought about trying some physical therapy? It’s important to find a physical therapy clinic that will give you the time and attention that you deserve and for which you are paying. Once you find a clinic that fits your needs, it is essential to be a good patient in order to maximize the effectiveness of your treatments in a timely manner.
Here are a few tips from Ashlie Eckmann, PT, on how you can be a GOOD physical therapy patient!
1. Shop around and do your research to ensure you are getting the best care. DO NOT just go to the physical therapy clinic that is closest to your home or work. It’s healthcare, not a gas station! Look for a physical therapy clinic that will give you the time and attention you deserve. Try to find a clinic that ensures one-on-one care with the same PT every visit.
2. Come prepared to your first appointment
- Bring a prescription from your doctor (if your health insurance requires this)
- Provide your health history
- Bring a copy of your insurance card and driver’s license
3. Arrive to your appointments at the correct time.
4. Ask the right questions. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions that you think are important to improve. It’s your body, listen to what it needs and ask if you are unsure!
5. Be honest about your health history, activity level, fears, etc..
6. Always be an advocate for yourself! Let your PT know if something is uncomfortable, if you are worried about performing a specific movement, or if you feel you would benefit from a specific intervention.
7. Be compliant with your home exercise program. Understand that your experience with PT is a team approach. Both you and your PT need to put in some effort to get the results you want.
8. Be patient!! Sometimes progress is slow, but stay as positive as you can! Changes don’t typically happen overnight or from just one PT appointment. By keeping up with your exercises, your body and brain are learning that it’s okay to move in a comfortable way! If a PT promises to heal you by performing unnecessary fads on you (i.e. dry needling, Graston, etc.), you might want to think about trying a different clinic.
9. Keep moving as instructed by your physical therapist. Movement is medicine! Motion is lotion!
10. Set goals. What would you like to be able to do after physical therapy? Your physical therapist needs to know in order to plan out treatments and home programming.
These are just a few tips to help you get the most out of your physical therapy experience! Physical therapy should not be painful and you should not be nervous or afraid to get started! At Omaha Physical Therapy Institute, we are here for you and want to get you back to the things you love to do! We try to make it as easy as possible for you to be a GOOD patient and to fully benefit from the quality of care we provide. If you have any questions or want to get started with your comeback story, call us at 402-934-8688!
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