After a car rear-ended me, I had pain that radiated from my neck all the way down to my hip. I was in constant pain and didn't know if I would ever get my old life back. Therapy Unlimited is helping me to do just that with specific exercises and pool walking designed just for me! They even helped with my auto claim and explained the paperwork to me and sent all the reports that my insurance company needed so that everything was covered!
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The Relationship Between PT and Neurological Conditions
When asked about what physical therapy means to them, most people would probably indicate it is treatment prescribed by a physician following a sports injury, post surgery or injuries sustained from another type of accident. What most people probably don’t think, is that physical therapy can play a large part in the treatment of neurological disorders (also called neurological diseases or conditions). Neuro disorders affect the brain, spinal cord or nervous system and include well known conditions such as ALS, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s; however, did you know there are more than 1,000 such diseases? Some of the more well-known examples other than the ones just noted are:
Quick neuro disorder facts:
How does physical therapy help?
Physical therapists are licensed professionals trained to evaluate and treat problems that affect movement. Movement is many times one of the ways in which neurological conditions have an impact on the body and many times, as certain neuro diseases progress, movement problems worsen (such is the case with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s). Some examples (obviously no where near exhaustive) of how certain diseases can inhibit movement and how physical therapy can improve movement are:
The PTs and PTAs at Therapy Unlimited are trained to customize each plan of care to specifically meet the unique needs of every patient and obtain realistic goals. The therapy one person receives will be different from the therapy another gets – often times even if those patients have the same underlying condition (because patients all have varying backgrounds, medical histories, and current abilities).
What can you expect during therapy?
Patients should expect to see a therapist two to three times a week for several weeks up to several months. For patients with lifelong debilitating neurological diseases, therapy may benefit the patient long-term over the course of progression of the condition. While physical therapy can’t stop or “cure” a neurological condition, it can help slow down the progression of symptoms involving movement and ease discomfort and pain levels.
At Therapy Unlimited, sessions may occur in our clinic setting, in the gym, in the pool, or in a private treatment room. When working with pediatric patients, therapy sessions can be set up to mimic play-time which puts the patients more at ease and willing to do the “work” (even if they don’t realize it!). Our goal is to help patients and their caregivers increase their knowledge and understanding of the condition, educate them on how to help ease symptoms at home (we don’t live in a clinical setting all the time), and work with them one-on-one on posture, balance, strength, stretching, range of motion, and pain relief. In addition, our staff includes occupational therapists who can work with patients on activities of daily living (dressing, cooking, hobbies, etc.) and cognitive functions.
How can you help your therapists?
Our staff is pretty amazing at what they do; however, physical therapy is a team effort that must include the active participation of the patient (and sometimes the patient’s caregivers). We ask patients to:
Diagnosis of – and living with - a neurological condition doesn’t have to mean being sequestered to a life inside your home. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with stroke, ALS, Parkinson’s Alzheimer’s, etc. and is curious about whether physical or occupational therapy can be a benefit, call us for a complimentary screening.