Different physical therapy programs are recommended depending on the patient’s symptoms and conditions. Some of the common physical therapy programs are discussed below.
General physical therapy
Physical Therapy involves the management of musculoskeletal dysfunction, injury or disease. The musculoskeletal system is composed of muscles, bones and nerves that help in movement. The common conditions that may be managed by general physical therapy include:
- Back / neck pain
- Carpel tunnel syndrome
- Joint pain
- Post-operative rehabilitation
- Sports related injuries
- Temporomandibular joint dysfunction
- Trauma/serious injuries
Arthritis/ Prehab programs for total joint replacement
In these types of programs multiple problems such as loss of motion, strength deficits, pain, joint protection, and even weight reduction are managed to decrease arthritic pain. Physical therapy can include exercise, manual therapy/massage techniques, joint protection instruction, and bracing along with other modalities such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation and hot and cold treatments.
Generally physical therapy is recommended both before and after total joint replacement surgeries to improve the patient’s condition and facilitate rehabilitation.
Aquatic therapy involves a broad range of cardiovascular endurance and training exercises performed in the water that are traditionally performed on land. The advantage with aquatic therapy is that it reduces the stress on joints and muscles by minimizing the effect of gravity on the body. The physical properties of water such as buoyancy, viscosity, hydrostatic pressure, and warmth generate a unique therapeutic environment that supports patient healing and improves performance.
Aquatic therapy exercises are beneficial for patients who are recommended to perform limited or non-weight bearing exercises. The common conditions that may be treated by aquatic therapy are as follows:
- Athletic injuries
- Chronic pain
- Joint replacement
- Neck and back pain
- Post surgical conditions
- Pregnancy related musculoskeletal dysfunction
Athletic training programs
An athletic training program includes formal education in different areas such as injury/illness prevention, first aid and emergency care, assessment of injury/illness, human anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, therapeutics modalities, therapeutic exercise, general medical conditions and disabilities. It also includes nutritional aspect of injury and illness, psychosocial intervention, referral and healthcare administration. A major part of the training is in the form of classroom teaching. The candidates also receive clinical training in a variety of practice settings. The program provides the candidates with the knowledge and skills required for athletic training.