What Qualifications Should You Look For in Your Physical Therapist?
Helping patients find relief from pain, overcome debilitating injuries, and become more physically fit are just a few of the daily job duties performed by skilled physical therapists. Each day, more people discover that physical therapy is an important step on their path to better health.
Individuals who are new to physical therapy may wonder if it’s the right treatment for their particular problem. They may also have questions about the training and qualifications required to become a physical therapist. The following information can help you make a sound decision about seeking physical therapy treatment, and choosing the right physical therapist for your needs.
Can You Benefit From Physical Therapy Treatment?
There are many benefits of physical therapy treatment. Contrary to what some people believe, it’s not limited to treating athletes with sports injuries and those who have suffered automobile accidents or strokes. Physical therapy has a wide variety of uses and can help you:
- If you have experienced a muscle strain or sprain.
- If you currently feel pain in your back, neck, shoulders or other joints.
- If you’d like to avoid invasive procedures and expensive drugs to manage or eliminate pain.
- If limited mobility in your shoulder, knee, or hip joints is affecting your daily activities.
- If you’ve been injured at work, or while performing routine duties.
- If pain or decreased flexibility is keeping you from participating in activities you used to enjoy.
- If you suffer with osteoarthritis or degenerative disc disease.
- If your goals include staying active and maintaining mobility as long as possible.
- If you’re concerned about balance and preventing future injuries.
Physical therapy treatment incorporates a variety of hands-on methods to reduce pain fast, while restoring full range of motion to affected areas. After evaluating your condition, your physical therapist will design a treatment plan based on your goals and objectives. He or she will use a combination of manual therapy, strength training and conditioning, and other effective techniques. Instead of relying on drugs to mask your symptoms, your physical therapist will focus on helping your body heal itself by addressing the underlying cause of your discomfort. By completing your physical therapy plan, you can be back on the road to good health.
A skilled physical therapist can be a true partner in your health and well being. Next, we’ll review how to choose the right one.
Training Requirements and Qualifications for Physical Therapists
Before they begin practicing, physical therapists must undergo extensive training and education. The first step is earning a graduate degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Coursework typically includes anatomy, physiology, biology, biomechanics, human growth and development, exercise physiology, and pathology. Physical therapist training also includes clinical experience and differential diagnosis.
Before undertaking physical therapy job duties, graduates must pass a national licensure exam. In addition, each state sets its own standards for licensing physical therapists. Most require a minimum number of annual continuing education credits to remain a licensed physical therapist in good standing.
Review your physical therapist’s credentials to be sure a qualified, skilled expert is treating your condition. In addition to verifying his or her license status, you may want to consider additional factors, such as:
- Does the physical therapy clinic accept your insurance?
- Will the staff submit claims on your behalf to the insurance company?
- Is the environment comfortable and welcoming?
- Do you feel you are listened to, and that your therapist takes your goals and concerns into consideration?
- Does your physical therapist have good communication skills and compassion?
If you ever feel uncomfortable in your interactions with a physical therapist or clinic staff, you may need to keep searching for a qualified physical therapist with whom you feel comfortable. Try asking friends and family for their referrals. Or, consult your physician and request a prescription for physical therapy – he or she may be able to provide a recommendation.
Are You Ready to Find Relief With Physical Therapy?
Now that you know more about physical therapist training and licensing, perhaps you’re ready to begin your search for physical therapy and rehab services. In Missouri, you’ll need a physician’s prescription before seeking treatment – but you have the right to go to the qualified physical therapist of your choice.
When referring patients to physical therapists in Eureka, many physicians recommend the skilled team at the Sports and Physical Therapy Center. From your first visit, owner Sean Quinn and his staff will make you feel welcome and well cared for. And you can be assured you’re in good hands, since each physical therapist at the Sports and Physical Therapy Center holds a graduate degree in physical therapy and is licensed to practice in Missouri.
The Sports and Physical Therapy Is Ready to Help You
Physical therapy is a source of relief for countless individuals. Whether you’re feeling pain, stiffness, or are simply unable to enjoy life as you once did, obtaining treatment from a reputable physical therapy center in Eureka, Missouri, can help you, too.
You can feel confident choosing the Sports and Physical Therapy Center – the entire team is highly qualified; they seek continuous training to sharpen their skills and bring you the latest treatment techniques. Most important, they get results. So, why wait to feel better? Contact your physician for a prescription, and call the Sports and Physical Therapy Center at 636-938-4065 to schedule an evaluation.
If you’d like to learn more about Sean Quinn, his team of physical therapists, or their full range of services, visit http://www.ptstl.com.