Healthy Living

Fact Versus Fiction: Common Myths of Physical Therapy Busted

Physical therapy can help individuals with a host of physical limitations or ailments. However, many people resist searching for physical therapy near me because of the numerous falsehoods circulating about the practice. Here’s the truth about some of the most common myths surrounding physical therapy. 

Just About Any Medical Professional Can Do PT

Physical therapists spend years going through specialized training to be able to identify physical ailments and develop appropriate treatment options. That training puts them in a unique position to prescribe exercises, stretches, and recovery plans to help patients increase strength, reduce pain, and regain function. Most other medical providers do not have the same level of specialized training. 

That Physical Therapy Is the Same as Massage

Massage therapy is a type of soft tissue manipulation that can be used to relieve tension and muscle constrictions. It may be used as part of a complete physical therapy program, but the two should not be confused. PT can also include exercise, stretching, soft tissue mobilization, and a host of other treatments designed to improve physical function and enhance performance. 

You Have To Have an Injury for Physical Therapy

While many patients first seek out physical therapy Portland because of an injury or painful musculoskeletal condition, it is not a prerequisite for treatment. In reality, a trained PT can help otherwise healthy patients stay that way. Additionally, sports specialists are trained to help improve cardiovascular function, posture, and body alignment in ways that support athletic performance. 

Your Therapist Will Make You Give Up Your Favorite Activities

This is a common misconception about many types of healthcare providers. However, in truth, most medical providers want you to continue enjoying the things you love most. Instead of telling you not to resume your favorite sports (whether it’s running or downhill skiing), your PT is more likely to recommend a plan of action that can help you get back in form to enjoy them. You might be pleasantly surprised at how PT sessions can help you achieve a stronger performance. 

Only Athletes Can Benefit from Physical Therapy

All this talk about sports isn’t a coincidence. Athletes often require physical therapy to stay in top shape. However, the practice isn’t limited to them. Virtually anyone can benefit from working with a PT trained to address his specific concerns. That means you might find a top runner next to an elderly man with a history of falling. 

Physical Therapy Isn’t Covered by Insurance

Some people think of PT as an extra and assume it won’t be covered by their health insurance. The truth is that, while every health insurance policy is a little different, many include sessions with approved physical therapy specialists as part of regular services. Still, it’s a good idea to call your insurance provider before starting treatment to verify coverage. 

Myths about physical therapy services are everywhere. Most of them have little or no basis in the truth, which is that almost anyone can benefit from receiving treatment at some point in their life. People looking to increase athletic performance, recover from an injury, or reduce their risk of falling should consider contacting a local physical therapy office to learn more. 


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