Tips & Techniques to Get You Back to Full Strength

Get PT First

Denise Smith 
 • 
March 1, 2016
Get PT First

It's no secret that healthcare costs are on the rise. Deductibles are higher and many insurance companies are not covering certain procedures. It may take
weeks to get a test approved by your insurance and then often times, these tests can yield little information about a current source of pain you may
be having in your muscle or joint. A local hospital system is even charging a "Facility Fee" each time you have a test completed, visit their office
or partake in any of their ancillary services.

What if we shift our focus to prevention instead of treatment? A healthy diet and exercise are excellent places to start. But sometimes we have
little aches and pains that we ignore. They later turn into a larger problem when they go unchecked. Most physical therapy clinics offer complimentary
injury screens (to those patients that do not have a federally funded insurance plan). So....TRY GETTING PT FIRST.

Physical therapists are movement experts. Often, they are able to perform a quick musculoskeletal exam and correctly determine the source of your pain.
Remember, the goal is to treat the dysfunctional source that is causing the pain, not just treat the pain. Strengthening exercises can help retrain
weak muscle groups, flexibility exercises can help joint move better, and stability drills can help improve balance and coordination. All of that put
together can lead to decreased pain and improved movement which can help you avoid surgeries and get you back to what is important to you.

Can you save money long term by preventing injuries? ABSOLUTELY. The idea of saving on health care costs does not have to be limited to individuals. Companies
can benefit from injury prevention training too. Employers can save thousands in worker's compensation injuries with education on better movement patterns
to their employees. Education on proper lifting mechanics, ergonomic desk-set up, and strengthening programs can help employees stay injury free while
at work. Physical therapists will gladly assist local employers with planning injury prevention programs. According to OSHA.org, the top benefits of
a workplace safety and fitness program are increased productivity, reduced costs, better employee morale, greater job satisfaction, and greater retention
of employees.

You can make better decisions about your health and wellness when you understand how to prevent injuries and manage your symptoms before they worsen. Do
not lose your freedom from living your life because you waited too long to address some very basic movement issues. Do not let pain control you. Do
not let your insurance company dictate your care. You can be in control when you understand how to move properly. Consider talking to a PT FIRST.

Denise Smith
Meet the Author
Denise Smith graduated from Marquette University in 2002 with a Master’s Degree in Physical Therapy and has been a certified running technique specialist since 2014. She is a consultant for multiple local middle and high schools and instructs courses in Kinesiology at McHenry County College. Denise also travels the country as part of the Pose Method education team with a lecture series on injury prevention and treatment along with the running technique certification course.
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