Physical Therapy FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions About Physical Therapists and the Services They Provide
What Conditions Do Physical Therapists Treat?
While the main motivation to visit a physical therapist may be to heal after an injury or surgery, physical therapists can treat a wide range of ailments and orthopedic conditions for all ages, including:
- Shoulder injuries
- Headaches and neck pain
- Sports injuries
- Pre operative and post operative
- Total joint replacement
- Hip pain
- Foot and ankle conditions
- Dizziness and vertigo
- Spinal stenosis
- Disc herniations
Physical therapy also helps:
- Improve mobility
- Improve function
- Injury recovery
- Surgery prevention
- Post-surgical treatment
In order to treat these conditions we complete a robust examination to ensure the best treatment plan is utilized. The best part of BC + PT is that we also have chiropractors and acupuncturists on staff to provide multiple services on-site.
What Education and Training Do PTs Have?
Physical therapists, also known as PTs, must undergo extensive training in a variety of modalities to earn their title. A physical therapist usually completes undergraduate coursework in a related field such as biology, health science, exercise and/or sports.
Then they’ll progress to a doctorate program to receive their Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from a college accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education. Some physical therapists choose to specialize in a specific area like neurology, oncology, lymphedema or sports rehab, and all will complete a clinical rotation.
To officially receive accreditation, the physical therapist must pass a board certification exam and stay up-to-date in developments of the field by taking frequent continuing education courses.
What Happens in a Typical PT Session?
Your first visit to our BC + PT physical therapist will start with an in-depth assessment. Our doctors will ask you in-depth questions about your condition and your health in order to paint a full picture of appropriate treatment.
Please be honest with your PT so that your plan can be as effective as possible!After the assessment is the evaluation.
You’ll be evaluated on your:
- Range of motion
- And coordination
This is not a test! This is simply an evaluation for your physical therapist to assess where you’re starting in order to determine the best course of treatment. Make sure to wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothes to your first appointment that you can move around in.
During a treatment session, your physical therapist may use a number of different modalities to treat your particular condition.
These could include:
- Heat and ice
- Electrical stimulation
- Massage and mobilization
- And exercise
The foundation of your physical therapy treatment at BC + PT is exercise, which may help improve your blood flow, flexibility, reduce swelling, and help you feel and move better overall. You’ll work directly with your physical therapist during these exercises. Your PT may also suggest at-home exercises which may be helpful in expediting your recovery.
Does Insurance Cover Physical Therapy?
Because physical therapy (PT) represents an essential part of a comprehensive healthcare treatment plan for many individuals, most health insurance plans cover it.
As with any health insurance plan, the extent to which physical therapy is covered may vary, as some plans have limits. This includes most major medical plans such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, Independent Health and Medicare. Injuries arising from car accidents or work-related injuries also have insurance coverage in New York State.
Is PT Care Ongoing?
The hands-on nature of physical therapy is essentially what requires patients to visit a number of times. Visiting a medical doctor often involves a pre-established plan that is conducted at home (i.e. taking antibiotics once a day for a few weeks).
In contrast, a patient must see a physical therapist in their office in order for the physical therapist to provide acute, chronic and/or preventative care. Your Doctor of Physical Therapy should tell you the extent of treatment recommended and how long you can expect it to last.
How Many Physical Therapy Sessions Are Necessary?
As with many other types of treatments, the amount of physical therapy sessions you’ll need depends on multiple factors, such as:
- What you’re seeking in treatment
- How long you’ve had a certain condition
- Where the injury is located
- Your genetics and overall health
- And more
How Often Do You Need to See a Physical Therapist?
Your physical therapist, or PT, will be able to share the extent of treatment recommended and how many sessions you can expect to visit in a specific period of time.
The average patient will most likely need to visit the PT between 1 and 3 times a week. The exact frequency will depend on the severity and general nature of the condition as well as the amount of progress that is made over time.
“Dr. Phil is absolutely AMAZING. I attend for physical therapy twice a week and he is always patient, understanding and very diligent!!!” Kasia W.