Physical Rehabilitation in Suwanee
You may think of physical rehabilitation as something people do to recover from surgery or a period of inactivity after an illness or injury. But physical therapy can be used in a much broader range of circumstances than most people realize. You do not need to have surgery or be off your feet for weeks to benefit from physical therapy. In fact, some patients may find that it helps them postpone surgery or avoid it altogether. It’s also used to help people with chronic pain or in conjunction with other therapies for musculoskeletal injuries and pain.
What Can a Suwanee Physical Rehabilitation Clinic Do for You?
There are several different methods of physical rehabilitation, and you may benefit from one or more of the following:
Orthopedic Physical Therapy
Because we also provide chiropractic care, we see a large number of patients with back, neck, joint, or other musculoskeletal pain and difficulties. Orthopedic physical rehabilitation is often advantageous with chiropractic adjustments and other therapies. Our therapists can assist you with sports injuries, arthritis, car accident injuries, and more. Patients who require spinal adjustments for misaligned vertebrae will benefit from physical therapy to help keep the spine aligned in the future.
What will you do in physical therapy? This depends on your injuries and goals for treatment. Often we evaluate the difficulties you have and recommend options to reduce pain, strengthen your body, and help you regain any lost function. In some cases, this looks like stretching or strength exercises, during which your therapist might assist by providing resistance. Improved strength and flexibility support the spine, reduce the risk of future misalignment, and prevent additional injuries. Other exercises may be designed to strengthen the injured area of the body.
Heat and Cold Therapy
We may also use hot or cold therapy – heat therapy is typically used before a physical therapy session to warm up the muscles and make exercise easier. It can help reduce pain during a workout and make it easier for you to do the prescribed activities.
Cold therapy is applied after a session to reduce inflammation and symptoms of muscle injury or overexertion. Frequently we use it to help patients recover from workouts with less soreness and pain the next day so that they can work on at-home exercises.
It can be difficult to get back to your “normal” when recovering from an injury. You may find that your arms, legs, or other parts of your body don’t respond as they used to or that you can’t do the same tasks as before. While this can be frustrating, neuromuscular reeducation can help you get back on track.
This form of rehabilitation consists of exercises to help with balance or core control (which are useful even if the injury is not in the core), proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (to help your body re-learn how to orient itself in space), and other techniques to help your nerves and muscles work together again. This is a process that takes time, so it’s important to understand that you won’t achieve immediate results. However, as you continue with these methods, your ability to control your movements and complete typical activities should improve.
Myofascial release is a type of massage therapy that is a beneficial part of a comprehensive physical rehabilitation plan for some patients with myofascial pain syndrome. This occurs when knots or spasms form in the myofascial tissue, a flexible lining that covers all the organs, muscles, tissues, and joints in the body. As knots form, you may have pain either close to the knot or farther away (referred pain). You may also find your ability to do certain movements is now limited because the myofascial tissue has become stiff and inflexible, restricting your movement. Doctors often overlook myofascial pain, especially when you have other diagnosed injuries, and some patients spend months trying to find a solution.
If we suspect myofascial pain, we’ll schedule a session with one of our massage therapists. They will carefully probe the myofascial tissue, and when they find a knot, apply gentle but forceful strokes until the knot relaxes or becomes pliable again. Some patients experience relief or at least a measure of improvement after one session, while others do better with several sessions.
Electrical stimulation serves several purposes in physical rehabilitation:
- It can be used to stimulate the nerves and muscles, even causing muscle contracture if you’re struggling to move a muscle. Muscle contracture is advantageous for certain types of injuries.
- It can improve blood flow and circulation and even help wounds heal faster.
- The stimulation can also be set to a frequency that helps to relieve pain so you can focus on your therapy exercises and grow stronger.
This process begins with the placement of adhesive electrodes on your skin near the injured area or where you feel pain. These electrodes connect to a small device that sends a low-voltage current through the skin. You should not feel pain, but some patients experience a mild tingling sensation. Depending on your needs, we can either program the device to stimulate your muscles and nerves or to interfere with signals between the nerves and brain so that you don’t feel pain.
Electrical stimulation is safe for most patients, but it should not be used in people with a pacemaker or certain heart issues. If you have cardiac difficulties, please be sure to let us know.
In some cases, regenerative therapies can produce favorable results for patients with certain injuries, including nerve damage, chronic muscle pain, and some tendon and muscle injuries. One of our most popular regenerative treatments is platelet-rich plasma injections or PRP therapy.
PRP can be done in a single visit, with no need for you to come back to the office on different days. It begins with a simple blood draw, after which you’ll wait in the office while we place your blood in a centrifuge. That’s a complicated-sounding name for a device that spins around and separates your blood into components, including a light yellow liquid called plasma. This plasma is then reduced into two forms, platelet-rich plasma, and platelet-poor plasma. Platelets are blood cells that attach at the site of an injury, helping the blood clot and initiating the body’s mending process, so platelet-rich plasma is ideal for treating injuries.
This platelet-rich plasma is filled with proteins and growth hormones that promote healing at the injury site. As part of your blood, only a small amount of these healing factors reach an injured area of the body at any given time. But in the PRP procedure, we inject the platelet-rich plasma directly into the joint, muscle, tendon, or nerve, often using ultrasound to ensure we inject in exactly the right place. This puts a concentrated dose of substances that promote the healing process right where they’re needed most.
You can go back to most of your usual activities right after the injection, although we recommend you take it easy and avoid strenuous exercise for a few days. Typically people have few side effects aside from mild soreness near the injection site. Often you will feel the full results of your treatment within a few weeks. Most patients improve after one treatment, but occasionally a second or third helps reduce pain and improve range of motion.
Is Physical Rehabilitation Covered by Health Insurance?
Most of our treatments are covered at least in part by health insurance. One exception is regenerative medicine – unfortunately, many health insurance companies don’t yet cover PRP and other regenerative treatments. If you are curious about your copay, our office staff can help you with an estimate of your portion.
We know that sometimes patients may struggle with the part of their bill that health insurance doesn’t cover. One recommendation is to speak with a personal injury lawyer to find out if other types of insurance coverage are available. Many people need physical therapy due to a car accident, a slip and fall, or another injury that someone else’s negligence may have caused. In these situations, a skilled attorney may be able to make a claim on the other party’s car insurance, homeowner’s insurance, or business liability insurance. These policies are intended to cover medical care for people injured under certain covered circumstances, but some injured people are unaware that they qualify. Getting legal advice can help ensure that you don’t get stuck with a bill that should be covered by an insurance policy.
Optimum Health Rehab Physical Rehabilitation in Suwanee
Are you experiencing lasting pain that hasn’t cleared up or is unexplained? Are you still struggling with an injury you expect to have healed by now? Have you tried traditional treatments for your pain but found they didn’t work or caused side effects you couldn’t tolerate? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you may benefit from physical rehabilitation at Optimum Health Rehab. Please contact us online or call (678) 546-0550 today to set up an appointment for an evaluation and diagnosis of your pain, followed by a recovery plan.