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How to Get the Most Out of Physical Therapy

Jun 13, 2024
How to Get the Most Out of Physical Therapy
Physical therapy offers substantial benefits for people with chronic pain and those recovering from injuries and surgery. Here, learn important tips to help you maximize those benefits.

Physical therapy is a widely used, time-tested treatment for an array of physical ailments, including musculoskeletal injuries, as well as helping people recover from surgery more quickly. Relying on therapeutic exercises, stretching, and a variety of hands-on techniques, physical therapy can be an ideal solution for people of all ages, restoring mobility, flexibility, and strength.

At Metro Spine PC, our team offers patient-centered physical therapy services using the most advanced therapies and a custom approach for maximum benefits. If you’re scheduled for physical therapy, here’s what you can do to get the most from your experience.

Set goals

At the beginning of your therapy, you’ll work with your therapist and your doctor to set clear goals focused on your recovery. Physical therapy is completely customizable, and setting goals unique to you establishes a path to healing and a return to health and activity.

Communicate — often

Talking with your therapist about your goals, your concerns, and your health is an essential part of making sure your plan stays on track for your needs. If you have any changes in your condition, if you’re experiencing discomfort or anxiety, or if you want to change your goals in any way, talk to your therapist right away. 

Follow your plan

Once a plan is in place, it’s important to follow it closely. Each exercise, every stretch, and each treatment is specifically chosen to help you achieve your end goals. Don’t skip any therapy sessions, and participate fully in your therapeutic activities.

Do at-home exercises

Physical therapy isn’t just about your on-site sessions. Your therapy plan includes at-home exercises, too. Doing those exercises and stretches as prescribed is essential for your recovery, improving strength, flexibility, and mobility between in-office sessions. 

Establish a routine

Following your at-home routine and other healthy lifestyle behaviors is a lot easier when you make them part of your daily routine. Establish a schedule, and set aside both time and space dedicated to your therapy and recovery. Having a regular time and area to do your exercises makes it easier to stay focused and track your progress.

Embrace a healthy lifestyle

In addition to learning and practicing exercises and stretches, our team helps you adopt other healthy habits, as well. Incorporating more physical activity, eating a healthy diet, and prioritizing stress management and sleep will assist in your recovery while setting the stage for injury prevention in the future.

Be patient and celebrate small achievements

When you’re injured or recovering from surgery, it’s normal to want to get back to your regular activities as soon as possible. Remember that healing is a process, and you need to be patient to give your therapy plan a chance to work and your body a chance to recover. Celebrating small milestones along the way helps you visualize your progress and feel more oriented toward your goals.

Listen to your body

Finally, it’s important to pay attention to your body, taking note of any discomfort you feel along the way. Even though a little discomfort may not be unusual, too much can signal a problem. Let your therapist know about any pain you’re having so that we can adjust your plan and work to prevent re-injury. 

If you’d like to learn how we can design a physical therapy plan focused on your health and wellness, request an appointment online or over the phone with the team at Metro Spine PC in Oxon Hill and Clinton, Maryland, or Washington, DC, today.