Why Physical Therapy Plays Such an Important Role in Recovery

Physical Therapy, Recovery, David Wu

Whether you’ve recently undergone surgery or suffered a musculoskeletal injury, physical therapy (PT) may be recommended as part of your recovery plan. There are many people out there who aggressively avoid exercise -- and physical therapy often resembles, you guessed it, exercise.

So what is it about physical therapy that makes it beneficial for recovery, and why should you make it a priority? Here are some ways PT helps you recover.

Enhances the healing process

Your body’s regenerative abilities can be quite remarkable, but sometimes they can work rather slowly. And in some cases, the healing may not be fast enough to stay ahead of further deterioration. Physical therapy techniques can assist and boost the efficiency of natural healing processes. You may be able to avoid the formation of extensive scar tissue, for example, by stimulating blood flow and working on range of motion.

Preserves mobility

Injury or surgery could temporarily limit the motion of an affected joint, due to damage and inflammation. Physical therapy techniques often aim to restore and rebuild mobility back toward its natural range. Without these treatments and exercises, your range of motion could become permanently impaired as muscles atrophy, losing strength and capability.

Manages pain

Beyond physical therapy exercises, other techniques may provide some element of pain relief. Ultrasound, electrical stimulation, taping, and other treatments can complement movement therapies to reduce the pain you experience during recovery.

Helps prevent future injury

If you’ve suffered a sports injury, for example, specific therapeutic efforts can not only ease pain and aid recovery, these can also strengthen muscles around the injured area. This can help fortify the area -- say, an ankle or knee for a tennis hobbyist -- so it’s less susceptible to further damage. You’ll not only return to your sport safely, you can extend your capabilities and add protection against future injury.

Supports other medical conditions

Complications from diabetes, for example, can cause nerve problems in your feet and legs. Physical therapy techniques can work, along with insulin and blood sugar management, to ease or prevent further damage to nerves. Physical therapy may also help you with weight loss efforts, an important part of self-care for cardiovascular conditions.  

Counteracts the effects of aging

Age-related deterioration from osteoporosis, arthritis, and other conditions may lead to loss of muscle mass, joint motion, and much more. Adding physical therapy can interrupt the progression of some conditions, minimizing the effects these have on your life. When surgery is necessary, such as joint replacement, postsurgical physical therapy gets you back into regular daily living more quickly.

As an interventional pain medicine specialist, Dr. Wu knows the benefits of physical therapy as part of a pain management regimen. If you’re experiencing chronic pain, or if surgery or injury have slowed you down, contact our office for a consultation. You can make an appointment by calling the practice or through the easy-to-use “request appointment” tool on the website.

Left untreated, pain can limit motion, activity, and your ability to function and enjoy everyday life. Contact Dr. Wu today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Radiofrequency Ablation For Back Pain: How Does It Work?

Whether you’ve had back pain for a few weeks or a few years, you know how debilitating it can be. That’s where radiofrequency ablation comes in. Learning more about this revolutionary treatment can make your back pain a thing of the past.

7 Key Benefits of Physical Therapy for Pain Management

Physical therapy (PT) should be part of your treatment plan if you're living with chronic pain. Find out how the right PT program can reduce inflammation, restore strength and mobility, provide long-lasting pain relief, and help you heal.

How to Get Carpal Tunnel Relief Without Surgery

Bothered by carpal tunnel syndrome but not interested in surgery? You may have more options than you realize. Here’s a complete list of nonsurgical approaches to the pain, tingling, and numbness that come with carpal tunnel syndrome.

How Better Sleep Habits Can Help Your Joints

If you have joint pain, you know better than most how sleepless nights feel. But what if we told you sleep is crucial to managing your joint pain? Here’s what you should know about how catching some zzzs can help you find pain relief.

5 Encouraging Facts About Sciatica

Any kind of pain is frustrating and overwhelming, especially pain that impacts your back. That’s why we’re helping you find the bright side of sciatica with a few encouraging facts about your prognosis.