How can telehealth physical therapy help me?
getting evaluated, educated and guided along your recovery
helping you get out of pain
Physical therapy is a very manual based practice. It involves a lot of hand contact to properly evaluate and treat conditions. As we look at what web-based physical therapy services can provide, there is an obvious question which arises.
“What can telehealth physical therapy do to help me?”
Here at Change Sports PT we’ve had the opportunity to experiment with this form of delivery of care over the past year. While we will always continue to innovate, I believe that we have begun to discover a system which can be effective for getting rid of people’s pain in this form of care.
What can we deliver via web-based physical therapy?
When we say “physical therapy”, that may mean something different to different people. Our profession defines physical therapy as the art and science of healing. Here at Change Sports Physical Therapy in Huntington Beach, CA we focus primarily on musculoskeletal rehabilitation. This means we focus on pain related to muscles, joints, ligaments, and bones. (However, if we are going to be nerdy and exact, I would say we primarily treat the neuromusculoskeletal system, since the nervous system controls everything!)
So what is done in physical therapy to promote healing? There are five services which we provide in physical therapy:
Delivering Care online
With telehealth delivery of care we can deliver 2.5 out of the 5 services listed above.
What we obviously can not deliver via a web-based system of care, are manual therapy and modalities (like electrical stimulation, ultrasound, etc).
However, we still have half of our tools available to us!
Here is the breakdown of what we can do.
While we can’t put our hands on our patients to give a full evaluation (hence the half point in the 2.5), we can still use our patient interview and visual observations to evaluate the patient’s condition. Finding out the mechanism of injury and current symptoms, we can usually get pretty close to a proper assessment of the patient’s condition.
EDUCATION AND GUIDANCE
Sometimes simply knowing what is causing the pain, what to avoid, and what to do, can eliminate the pain. Here at Change Sports PT, we educate patients on the Recovery Roadmap. This simple process helps educate the patient on where they are at in their recovery process, what the goals are for their specific phase of healing, and where they will be going next.
The four phases are: Calming Phase, Mobility Phase, Strengthening Phase and Return to Play. Having a plan in place for getting out of pain, is a huge part of the rehabilitation process.
Corrective Exercise Progression
Thanks to web and app based services, we can deliver exercises through the web. Our exercise platform (Medbridge) is set up to give video guided exercises to our patients. We can also send individual videos and other patient education material through this system. This allows patients to follow an exercise program which video guided instructions. We are then able to update these exercises as the patient progresses through the stages in the Recovery Roadmap.
We have easy ways for your to get started on your recovery
What are the advantages of telehealth vs in-person visits?
- Advantages for At-Risk Patients: As I am writing this article, we are facing an epidemic with the Coronavirus. In order to prevent the spreading of this illness, telehealth delivery of care is a great option for some. Individuals who are at risk for contracting the disease, can stay in the safety of their own home, while at the same time start working on getting rid of their pain.
- Advantages for the DIYers: Some other patients who may prefer telehealth delivery of care are patients who are more of the DIY mentality and don’t want to schedule recurring visits in the office. This type of person just wants to know what to do, and they will go do it. Telehealth is perfect for this person. We can give you the tools and guidance to tackle your pain on your own.
- Quicker access to care: If patients don’t have the time to schedule an appointment, check their insurance, rearrange their schedule and get in the office, they can choose the quicker route by scheduling a telehealth visit.