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  • cathyorlandopt

Treatment is uncomfortable... should it be?

We know that the mechanical shifts of your levers and pulleys (muscles and tendons) happened over years and years. We didn't necessarily FEEL it happening; we may have noticed some stiffness or one side feeling awkward, but not typical pain.

Most cases of when patients come in for therapy, there is not a known event as to why they developed their pain. Not to say there is never a mechanism of injury, but usually I get an "I'm not sure" when asked why the issue began.

By the time we've lapsed into our shifts, the same muscles/fascia have tightened, the same muscles have remained inhibited, AND we've developed pain... you're coming into treatment in the most locked up, stiffened state your body can muster.

Answer: Discomfort can be unavoidable when we wait until the last possible moment to receive intervention. However, communication is key to assure the process is at YOUR pace and at YOUR tolerance levels.

Communication is key in regards to expectations of results, but also of what is to be experienced along the way. My goal is to get you there in the most efficient manner that you can comfortably handle.

What to expect to feel....

Treating the symptoms vs the cause....

Communication during physical therapy session....

There are a lot of dynamics and expectations that go into any physical therapy session! Keeping in mind that what hurts is typically not the only thing that requires treatment and also taking into account the length of time your body has been compensating to create the issue you now have -- it is impossible to rehab without eliciting SOME discomfort. Communication of where, how much, and how to adjust the discomfort is key with progression of treatment at levels that are comfortable for YOU. More discomfort does not equal better or faster recovery.

Best physical therapy practice involves me, as the therapist, to constantly evolve for the sake of the interventions I administer as well as for the sake of my patients. I am always working to fine-tune, make more efficient, or make more comfortable the treatment interventions while also cultivating better ways to communication for optimal outcomes. I am not perfect, but I am always working on it. All I want is for the patient to attain their goals!

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