Should Patients Continue With a Wellness Plan Upon Completion of Physical Therapy: MythBuster Monday
The goal for every patient in Physical Therapy is to never see them again following the completion of their plan of care. This means you were able to successfully rehab them and allowed them to get back to their life. However, for most patients they will return to physical therapy with the same exact issue
Hamstring Strains- nearly 1 in 3 will have another hamstring strain
ACL- Nearly 30% of females will have a second ACL tear within 24 months of their first surgery
Low Back Pain- Over 50% will experience low back pain again
And it goes on and on. This is due to many of the limiting factors that are placed upon Physical Therapist; including but not limited to insurance company limitations, patient compliance, Patient per hour etc.
The other big issue is even if you are seeing a patient twice a week for 1 hour, that is still less than 1% of that week. This leaves most therapist having to treat the symptoms, instead of having time to treat the root cause of the issue. Many times the root cause of these issues are faulty movement patterns, decreased work capacity, weakness, psychosocial components, etc. All of which, take TIME to improve, which is not afforded to our physical therapist.
Can A Wellness Program Post Physical Therapy Help?
Research has consistently shown that exercise programs can significantly reduce risk of injury.
Exercise on its own was able to decrease the risk of LBP by 33%
Proper Training does prevent recurrence of ankle injuries in athletes up to 12 months post injury
Preventative exercise programs can significantly reduce risk of ACL and Lower Extremity Injuries
Research has also shown that having a well rounded wellness program can improve quality of life, self efficacy, long term health outcome. Also proper wellness programs have been shown to significantly decrease long term health care cost
What Does A Quality Wellness Program Include?
Everything needs to based around one singular thing and that is the Client’s GOALS. Everything listed below should have the clients goal in mind.
- Nutrition Guidance
- Physical Activity Education
- Education on pychosocial factors such as sleep, stress, health habits
Take Home Point:
Physical Therapy is a catalyst for keeping people moving following an injury. However, due to current limitations in the system, Physical Therapist are typically unable to fully correct the underlying causes of an individuals injuries. Under the current limitations Physical Therapy can serve as a powerful tool to lead people to long term health. This is where a quality wellness plan can become incredibly important in building upon the gains we have made during Physical Therapy. If you are interested in my Wellness coaching options please reach out and we can set up a free consultation.
- Shipton EA. Physical Therapy Approaches in the Treatment of Low Back Pain. Pain Ther. 2018;7(2):127-137. doi:10.1007/s40122-018-0105-x
- Steffens D, Maher CG, Pereira LS, et al. Prevention of low back pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176:199–208. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2015.7431.
- Karlsson J, Thomee R, Sward L. Eleven year follow-up of patellofemoral pain syndrome. Clin J Sport Med. 1996;6:22–6.
- DeWitt J, Vidale T. Recurrent hamstring injury: consideration following operative and non-operative management. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2014;9(6):798-812.
- Suri P, Pearson AM, Scherer EA, et al. Recurrence of Pain After Usual Nonoperative Care for Symptomatic Lumbar Disk Herniation: Analysis of Data From the Spine Patient Outcomes Research Trial. PM R. 2016;8(5):405-414. doi:10.1016/j.pmrj.2015.10.016