Physical therapy, also called physiotherapy, is a specialty of healthcare that involves treating patients with injuries, diseases, or conditions that limit their ability to perform the normal range of activities of daily living. Physiotherapists provide Huntington Beach Physical Therapy either in a hospital setting or in a private clinic. Many physical therapy programs are provided at colleges or vocational/trade schools, and the military offers some. Many hospitals provide physiotherapy services.
The physical therapy profession includes treating injured or ill patients who cannot perform the normal range of physical functions. Typical treatments used by physiotherapists include physical therapy, exercise, occupational training, massaging, and chiropractic care. They help patients improve their health and reduce pain by applying techniques that correct muscle imbalance, strengthen weak or spongy tissues, and restore normal joint motion. They can treat sports injuries, strokes, and neuromuscular disorders. In most cases, patients are back to work within the same day of their initial injury or illness.
A physical therapist can receive any of a number of degrees from various physical therapy programs. Some specialize in pediatrics, geriatrics, neurology, orthopedics, sports medicine, cardiovascular sciences, and pediatric orthopedics. Others have a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy or an equivalent field. Some physical therapy specialists have a master’s degree and Ph.D. in physiological principles. These professionals are called advanced physical therapists or APRPT.
Most physical therapy colleges train physical therapists by having them complete a four-year bachelor’s degree course that combines lectures with clinical practice. The classes include physiology and anatomy, which show how the body functions; microbiology to understand the body’s internal workings; psychological and behavioral counseling to help the patient understand his or her own thoughts and feelings; and motor skills and rehabilitation to prepare the patient for future health care needs. The Bachelor’s degree programs generally take two years to complete.
A physical therapist can specialize in one or more fields of health care. Specialization can be in pediatrics, geriatrics, cardiovascular sciences, orthopedics, pediatrics, women/neuropathic medicine, and acute/care/post-operative health care.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health offers certifications in safety and occupational practices for physical therapists and allied health care workers. Internationally recognized accrediting bodies offer certification in physical therapy. The International Society of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (ISMTB) is the largest professional organization of physical therapists. It offers courses in basic science and engineering, industrial health, occupational health, therapeutic health, and safety.
Upon enrolling in a program, the student will begin the first year with a preparation course. The student will be able to demonstrate his/her competence in various settings, such as hospitals, clinics, private practices, and schools. During the first year of training, the students will be taught core technical skills, including analysis, assessment, design, implementation, and control. The student will be taught how to assess and treat patients with a range of impairments. During the first visit, the therapist will review the patient’s objectives, risks, and treatment plan.
The patient and the physical therapist will be able to establish and develop a comprehensive treatment plan. This includes initiation of treatment procedures, documentation of the initial assessment, discharge summary, and follow-up appointments. The first visit usually concludes with the physical therapy practitioner issuing a formal diagnosis. However, it may also end with an open discussion between the patient and the PT. Based on the documentation obtained from the patient, the PT may suggest treatment options or refer the patient to another practitioner for additional evaluation and treatment. The majority of physical therapy treatment plans are effective; however, approximately 10% of patients experience a recurrence of their condition after completing the treatment plan.