Individualized Physical Therapy Programs
Your physician may have already referred you to physical therapy. by writing a prescription. You can also receive physical therapy by directly seeking the service. OPT will provide you with more information and guide you appropriately, because under certain situations, a physician referral may be required.
So what is a typical OPT physical therapy program? It begins with your therapist conducting a thorough evaluation and assessment of your condition. Using information provided by you about your goals, life style and occupation, a treatment program is designed for you, and discussed with you. Throughout your treatment at OPT, our staff will communicate with you, your physician or health care professional as needed. OPT provides special care in a number of areas. If you do not read about it here on the web site, be sure to ask an OPT therapist, because the better informed you are, the more effective the program is.
1. General Orthopedics
If you have sustained an injury like a fracture, muscle tear, etc. or undergone surgery to a joint (for example, the rotator cuff, knee or hip replacement, arthroscopy, etc), you are probably experiencing pain, swelling, and an inability to move the body part from stiffness and lack of strength. Physical therapy can help you achieve greater functionality and rid your pain.
2. Shoulder Conditions
Shoulder Conditions that benefit from therapy are many, and include impingement, rotator cuff tear, dislocations, subluxation of shoulder or AC joint, to name just a few common ones. The shoulder is a complex joint which when healthy, allows your arm to move in several directions. With any loss of shoulder motion or strength, along with pain, the use of your entire arm is limited. Physical therapy is essential to help relieve pain and improve range of motion and strength to return you to your usual activities. Combined with pain relieving modalities, techniques such as joint mobilizations and the individualized exercise program which you are progressed through, are used.
3. Total Hip & Knee Replacement
Increasing the range of motion in the hip or knee is usually the early focus of physical therapy after a total hip or knee replacement. You will need as much range of motion as possible in order to perform functional activities. Building strength in the involved muscles surrounding the joint is also extremely important. Pain from surgery should decrease with improved movement of the hip or knee and with weight-bearing activities. The goal of physical therapy is to get back to the point where you can perform normal, everyday activities without difficulty.
4. Spinal / Neck and Lower Back Pain
Spinal pain can be caused by one of many conditions including slipped disc, spinal stenosis, sciatica etc. As a result you are unable to conduct even normal activity like sitting or taking short walks.
Your therapist will instruct you in appropriate posture and body mechanics during normal activities, and educate you on the anatomy of the spine and mechanism of your injury or condition. Correct body mechanics will decrease stress to the spine to prevent further injury or re-injury. Physical Therapy can help train you in different types of exercises that offer relief of symptoms. Combined with appropriate modalities, the therapist will help relieve your pain, so that you can perform daily functions without pain. Some of the treatment techniques used include the McKenzie approach, Spinal Stabilization exercises, Total Motion Release, Myofascial release etc.
Osteoporosis or "porous bones" occurs because of low bone density, and is caused from one of many reasons including genetics, age, hormonal levels and life styles. Aging populations have increasing risks of osteoporosis, which results in significantly increased chances of fracturing a bone. Fractured bones lead to other consequences that may include permanent disability, chronic pain and fear of falling, all of which lead to reduced quality of life choices.
Weight bearing exercises such as walking or stair climbing, and resistance exercises such as lifting weights, are designed and conducted. Improving your strength and balance is extremely necessary to reduce the risks of fracture from a fall.
A stooped posture called kyphosis, may cause a compression fracture of one or more backbones. Exercises can avoid such occurrences by improving posture.
OPT therapists can help you maintain strength, balance and posture which can aid in prevention and management of osteoporosis.
6. Sports Injury
Sports injuries include meniscus tear, ACL tear, tennis elbow, hamstring strain, ankle sprain, etc, that can occur while playing a sport, or a wrist sprain can occur while lifting weights. These injuries can occur due to muscle imbalance or improper force. Physical therapy can help reduce inflammation and pain, strengthening the appropriate muscles and training you in the proper alignment of the body when playing, so that risk of injury is reduced or re-injury is prevented.
If you have suffered a stroke, or have a nerve injury such as foot drop, Bell's palsy, or brachial plexus palsy, you may be experiencing inability to move an arm or leg because the muscle is unable to work. Physical therapy is of utmost importance in the form of neuro muscular re-education, electrical stimulation to the nerves and muscle, and strengthening of the weak muscles to help them regain movement.