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Physical Therapy: 7 Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: Jun 7

What is Physical Therapy?

Physical Therapy (PT), also known as physiotherapy, is a type of medical care that focuses on:

  • Relieving Pain

  • Increasing Mobility

  • Restoring Ability

  • Aiding in Recovery

  • Strengthening

  • Preventing Injury

  • Improving Quality of Life

Common methods used in physical therapy include:

  • Ultrasound

  • Traction

  • Stretching

  • Massage

  • Exercise

  • Ice/heat

  • Electrical Stimulation

Additional methods that are not traditionally covered by insurance (but that are extremely effective), may include:

  • Infrared Light, Near Infrared Light, and/or Red Light Therapy

  • Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

  • Pulsed Electromagnetic Frequency Therapy

  • Dry Needling

  • Acupuncture

A physical therapist is a medical professional who holds a bachelor's or master's degree, and who is trained in using these modalities to restore the body using a more non-invasive, holistic approach.

What is Physical Therapy used for?

Physical therapy is used for many conditions, from injury preventative to severe trauma or pain recovery. Some of the most common reasons people seek out therapy include (but are not limited to):

  • Neck or Back pain

  • Spinal decompression(disc herniation or bulging)

  • Whiplash

  • Myofacial release

  • Sports Injury

  • Knee or hip pain

  • Arthritis / Osteoarthritis

  • Tendonitis

  • Plantar fasciitis

  • Pelvic floor strengthening

  • Recover from surgery

  • Restore lost abilities

  • Learn to use assistive devices (cane, walker, etc.)

  • Heal from sports injury

  • Avoid surgery

  • Rehabilitation following stroke

  • Childbirth recovery

  • Injury prevention

How do I know if I need Physical Therapy?

Many people think physical therapy is only for people with major deficits, such a a person who's learning to walk again. However, the truth is, most people need and will benefit from physical therapy.

If you have any of the following, you would benefit from physical therapy:

  • Pain doing normal day to day activities

  • Chronic pain that is difficult or impossible to get relief from

  • Difficulty sleeping, sitting, standing, or walking do to pain

  • Inability to perform daily activities do to pain or loss of function

  • Increasing pain do to repetitive motion

  • Limited mobility

  • Weakness, loss of strength, or muscle atrophy

  • Stiffness or achiness in joints or muscles

  • Recently had a surgery or sports injury

  • Decreased function (can't perform the way you use to)

  • Desire to avoid surgery or injury

A large amount of surgeries and injuries are preventable if treated early. Many preventable issues start out as just a low level pain, or a small hindrance. Unfortunately, we force ourselves to get use to the nagging achiness, the burning muscles, the pinching pain. We learn to lift our arm only this high, only walk so far, or not to bend over anymore, because when we do it hurts too much. We cut back our normal routines and shorten our activities, we accommodate the pain until it grows out of control. Only when it's unbearable, or we've ignored it so long we can no longer function, do we seek help. This is when surgery may be our only option to heal.

Fortunately, physical therapy can avoid many unnecessary injuries and surgeries, if sought out early. So if you are experiencing a low level pain or some loss in function or mobility, now is the time to prevent a further issue.

If you've ignored your problem for a long time, you should still be evaluated, especially if you prefer to avoid surgery. It is amazing how much physical therapy can do!

If surgery is required, remember that physical therapy will help you recover quicker, and correctly. Recovering properly after a surgery is extremely important to prevent scar tissue from growing at the incision site and creating an even bigger problem. To ensure you do not re-injure the area, or create a new problem, get into P.T. right away.

What makes Physical Therapy at Therapy Pros Different?

At Therapy Pros, we take a very different approach to physical therapy. While most facilities provide therapy to groups of patients at one time, we try to offer our patient's one on one attention.

On evaluation we take as much time as need to understand complicated history of your ailment. We do a full body assessment and take into account your goals as well. Instead of using a 'one plan fits all' approach, we customize our treatment plan to you and your unique circumstance.

When you enter our office, you won't feel like just another number entering a gym. Our office has private treatment rooms, avoids group exercise, and had a friendly and accommodating staff.

We strive to relieve pain and heal patients as quickly as possible by using both traditional and non-traditional modalities. We also understand that holding chronic pain and injuries effects every part of your life, including sleep, emotional and mental health. We make space for our patients to be heard and provide solutions to help heal the whole body.

Do I need a Referral?

Medicare patients do not need a referral or per-authorization. Simply call our office and make an appointment. Once you are evaluated we will send our evaluation to your primary care physician for them to sign off on.

Most commercial insurance companies work the same way as Medicare in regards to a referral. Simply call the office and make an appointment for your evaluation.

It is important to know that some commercial insurances do require a per-authorization for care following the first evaluation. It is the patient's responsibility to know if their specific insurance requires a per-authorization for physical therapy, and to notify the office staff of this at the evaluation. This information can usually be obtained via your insurance online portal or by calling the number on the back of your insurance card.

Will Insurance Cover Physical Therapy?

Insurance usually covers traditional therapy modalities, such as:

  • Ultrasound

  • Traction

  • Stretching

  • Exercise

  • Ice/heat

  • Electrical Stimulation

  • Infrared Light Lamp

Modalities usually not covered by insurance include:

  • Infrared Light/Near Infrared Light Sauna

  • Low Level Laser Therapy (Infrared Light)

  • Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)

  • Pulsed Electromagnetic Frequency Therapy (PEMF)

  • Dry Needling

  • Acupuncture

  • Massage

The modalities not covered by insurance are extremely effective at relieving pain as well as healing. You can find more information regarding these services here.

What Insurance does Therapy Pros Accept?

We currently hold a contract with the following insurances:

  • Medicare

  • Aetna

  • Anthem/BCBS

  • Medical Mutual

Please note that most insurances still allow us to bill them, and they still process claims even though we do not contract with them.

At this time we do not accept:

  • Medicaid

  • United Health Care

We also offer an affordable option for self-pay patients. For more information regarding self-pay costs and/or wellness service costs, see our pricing page.

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