We often think of physical therapy as part of recovering from surgery, injury, or other trauma. But physical therapy provides a wide range of health benefits beyond recovery. If you’re dealing with chronic pain, decreased flexibility or balance, diabetes, or vascular conditions, discuss your goals with your primary care provider. Read the benefits below to discover how physical therapy can help return you to your prior level of physical ability.
What Are the Benefits of Physical Therapy?
Whether you have your sights set on running a marathon, simply climbing the stairs, or something in between, physical therapy can help you improve your mobility and flexibility.
The Benefits of Physical Therapy Include:
Manage pain. Physical therapy techniques and exercises can help mobilize your joints and soft tissue to restore muscle function to reduce or eliminate aches and pains.
Avoid surgery. With physical therapy you can often regain mobility and flexibility to delay or prevent the need for surgery. Even if surgery is necessary, a physical therapy program will improve your overall condition to make a speedier recovery possible.
Trauma recovery. Athletes recovering from sports injuries and people who’ve had recent surgeries rely on physical therapy for recovery. Based on the injury or surgery, a physical therapist will develop an exercise plan to return you to your previous level of performance.
Prevent injuries. Strengthening your muscular and skeletal systems and improved flexibility can help prevent future injuries. Your physical therapist will evaluate your physical strengths and weaknesses to design a program of activities that will improve your weak muscles and joints, thereby reducing your injury risks.
Improve flexibility and balance. As we age, or encounter injury or surgery, our mobility is restricted to where simple activities like eating, walking, or even maintaining proper body balance become difficult. By working your affected muscle groups, physical therapy can improve flexibility and restore balance, making it safer to carry on everyday tasks.
Stroke recovery. A stroke usually results in reduced or lost capabilities for body movement. Physical therapy will strengthen the affected muscle groups to improve posture, balance, and independent movement.
Manage heart and lung disease. While cardiac rehabilitation is critical in recovering from a heart attack, it’s often paired with physical therapy to help resume everyday activities sooner.
Manage diabetes and vascular issues. Circulation issues associated with diabetes can lead to discomfort in extremities, especially the legs and feet. Physical therapy exercises can improve overall circulation as well as control blood sugar.
Connect with a Baptist Health Physical Therapist
If you’re interested in learning more about physical therapy, connect with a Baptist Health Orthopedic provider.