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Celebrate National Physical Therapy Month with South Island Orthopedics

  • Oct 6 2021

If you have an injury or a condition that affects your muscles, bones, or joints, there’s a good chance physical therapy will be part of your treatment and recovery plan. Both adults and children can benefit from orthopedic physical therapy, which focuses on building strength and improving function via a variety of exercises, stretches, and other treatments. 

October is National Physical Therapy Month, and South Island Orthopedics wants to acknowledge the skills and dedication of our physical therapy clinic team, and offer some insight into the important role they play in our patients’ healing. 

What is Orthopedic Physical Therapy?

Female patient receives physical therapy after an orthopedic surgery.

Orthopedic physical therapy is a specialized branch of physical therapy that focuses specifically on injuries and conditions of the musculoskeletal system (bones, muscles, joints, ligaments, and tendons). Therapists are dedicated to helping alleviate and manage pain and discomfort, as well as help patients function better.

Physical therapy exercises may be prescribed as part of a treatment plan to avoid surgery, or as part of the recovery plan post-surgery. Some of the conditions that can benefit from PT include:

  • Arthritis
  • Neck and back pain
  • Knee, foot, and ankle conditions or injuries
  • Shoulder pain and injuries 
  • Hip pain and injuries
  • Sports-related injuries
  • Workplace injuries
  • Congenital conditions, like cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy
  • Orthopedic deformities 
  • Developmental delays in children
  • Training in the use of assistive devices 

Ultimately, the goal of physical therapy is to help patients improve their function and live their daily lives without pain or physical limitations. 

What to Expect from Physical Therapy

Physical therapy combines multiple treatments designed to improve function and reduce pain. Every patient is different, and therapists design individualized plans that typically combine:

  • ExerciseYoung boy balances on an exercise ball during a physical therapy session.
  • Strength training 
  • Stretching
  • Heat and ice application
  • Massage
  • Joint mobilization
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Biofeedback 
  • And other options 

Each session may be different, depending on your treatment goals and progress. Treatment approaches vary as well, depending on why you are receiving therapy. 

Here are some examples:

Pediatric physical therapy incorporates games and play into treatment, along with increased family involvement. Pediatric PT is designed to be fun for youngsters who may not understand why they are receiving therapy. 

Post-surgical physical therapy focuses on restoring strength and mobility, reducing scar tissue buildup, and improving range of motion after a surgical intervention like joint replacement

Sports medicine physical therapy is designed for athletes. Therapists typically work with patients after they’ve sustained injuries to help them return to their previous level of function. They might also provide sports-specific treatment to manage the effects of repetitive use injuries or prevent further injuries. 

Physical therapy is also a part of many pain management plans, often being used for conditions like arthritis and sciatica. Targeted exercises and treatments can help treat pain at its source, strengthen muscles to better support joints, and increase range of motion, all of which help alleviate pain.

Getting the Most from Physical Therapy 

Group of multiracial male teens play soccer on a field.

Orthopedic PT is proven to help patients recover from injuries and surgeries, as well as improve the symptoms of chronic conditions. Still, the success of the treatment is largely dependent on you, the patient. 

Although most people receive PT at a physical therapy clinic, most of the work occurs outside the office. Your commitment to following through on your therapist’s instructions and completing exercises and therapeutic treatments is the biggest factor in your success. Following their instructions closely and faithfully is the best way to return to your normal activities as soon as possible. 

Choosing the right physical therapist makes a difference as well. At South Island Orthopedics, we’re proud of our team of experienced orthopedic physical therapists, who are committed to helping patients of all ages heal and come back stronger than ever. They are knowledgeable, encouraging, supportive, and will do everything they can to support your recovery. 

PT at South Island Orthopedics 

If you want to learn more about orthopedic physical therapy at South Island Orthopedics, make an appointment at one of our convenient Long Island locations today. With offices in Woodbury and Cedarhurst, you can access the highest-quality orthopedic care wherever you are on Long Island.

And if you happen to see one of our physical therapists in October, be sure to wish them a Happy National Physical Therapy Month!

Posted in: Awareness Month