PT - Do You Really Know What We CAN DO?
When you hear physical therapy, you are probably like the vast majority of the population who have never had PT, the 93% of the population that don’t have a physical therapist on their healthcare team. You may think of someone in a gym with exercise equipment who is recovering from a sports-related injury. Or perhaps you think of someone in a hospital who is recovering from a stroke or a joint replacement in order to get back home. If Physical Therapy as a profession was in a beauty pageant, we would be “Miss Misunderstood” because what people think about physical therapy and physical therapists is literally a mere fraction of what we are and what we do. It’s like thinking that math is limited to 2 + 2 = 4.
This limited perception of physical therapy is driven partly by a broken healthcare system that favors reactivity versus proactivity. Did you know that 37% of all complaints at a primary care doctor visit can be inexpensively and effectively addressed by a physical therapist? But, only 7% of the population engages in PT. Again, the math is wrong here. Many more patients should be seeing a physical therapist.
We also live in a society that greatly prefers easy solutions and searches for instant gratification. You see, although the effects of physical therapy are much longer lasting, PT takes some work and time so it naturally takes a back seat to things like pills, injections, multiple doctor visits and everything that is commercialized as an easy fix to your problem.
Look at big pharma..they are better at marketing than they are at developing medicines. You simply take their pill and you’ll be hopping around, smiling in the fields with your loved ones in no time. Wear this simple brace to take your pain away. Use this cane and you’ll be as steady as you were when you were a kid. Rub this on your knees and you’ll feel like Jesse Owens instantly. These things have changed our brains to gravitate toward the easy route when in reality, the root cause of problems is never addressed by these quick fixes.
Did you know that physical therapists can work with cardiovascular and pulmonary patients, provide wound care, manage lymphedema, provide pelvic therapy for post-partum moms, help people get rid of dizziness and vertigo, help people improve their balance so they don’t fall, work with patients with Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis live well and fight their disease at all stages. We work in hospitals, schools, nursing homes, emergency departments, and your home. We have advanced degrees and every therapist who graduates now is a Doctor of Physical Therapy. Because of Direct Access Legislation, many PTs also don’t even need a prescription from a doctor to provide you with excellent care right when you need it and we are educated enough to know when your problem might need a set of extra eyes to take a deeper look. We are MOVEMENT SPECIALISTS and people that move their best are also their healthiest.
You don’t see flashy commercials for physical therapy but maybe you should. We can prove that physical therapy will help you find the way back to enjoying life the way you want to enjoy life. When your life is disrupted by pain, weakness, dizziness, falls, or movement challenges, think of physical therapy first despite our lack of television spots. You, the reader or viewer don’t see our commercials because they are in medical journals or in the reviews from patients who have had their lives changed by a physical therapist. We have proof, not actors.
Physical Therapy is the best profession for you if you are physically struggling to enjoy life the way you want to enjoy life, no matter what your age or problem. Choose PT first. We are much, much more thank you think!!
Be good and do good in 2022!