Physical Therapy

Our physical therapists work to get to know you, your medical history and your immediate needs.

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Mobility issues can often be improved through the hands-on care of a physical therapist. Through exercises, stretches and other techniques, therapists help patients reduce their pain or improve their range of motion. They also teach patients how to make the most of their mobility equipment.

At Long Island Select Healthcare (LISH), physical therapy is available for qualifying patients on Long Island.

What Are Physical Therapists?

Healthcare professionals who specialize in evaluating and treating mobility issues are known as physical therapists. Although they are not medical doctors, they do have advanced education in their field and are licensed by the state to practice. A physical therapist is sometimes known as a PT.

Physical therapists work one-on-one with their patients to provide personalized care. Each client faces unique struggles, so therapists must create customized treatment plans involving different therapies and equipment.

PTs also collaborate with other healthcare professionals. The team may include primary care providers, physiatrists and surgeons.

Therapy Tests and Assessments

When you first visit the physical therapist’s office, you may undergo assessments to determine what type of care you need. First, the PT will talk to you about your symptoms and your medical history. You may be asked about recent falls or mobility problems.

Next, the therapist may run you through a series of tests. For example, you may be asked to rotate your arms or legs to demonstrate your range of motion. Other tests may evaluate your posture or how quickly you walk. You may need to climb up and down stairs or balance on one leg.

If you use mobility equipment, the PT will want to see how well it helps you get around.

There may also be tests that measure various health functions, such as your heart rate or your neurological abilities.

Throughout these assessments, the therapist may use scales and rubrics to evaluate your abilities and determine where to begin your treatment.

Techniques and Treatments Used in Therapy

Your physical therapy plan will be tailored to your individual needs. The PT may rely on your medical history, your evaluation results and the input of other healthcare professionals to determine the best course of action for you.

Physical therapists use treatment techniques such as:

  • Active exercises
  • Cervical traction
  • Cold therapy
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Heat therapy
  • Light therapy
  • Lumbar traction
  • Massage
  • Stretches
  • Ultrasound
  • Water therapy
  • Wrapping

You may also be given an exercise regimen that you can do at home. Keeping up with your therapy routine throughout the week can contribute to your progress.

Your therapy plan is likely to change over time. If you don’t seem to be improving with one treatment, other approaches may be tried. You may also move on to new stages of treatment as you gain strength, flexibility or mobility.

Although some patients need long-term therapy, others see the PT only for a short time. If you make sufficient progress, you may be able to discontinue therapy.

Customizing Adaptive Equipment for Your Needs

You may already use mobility equipment, but the PT can help you learn more about getting the greatest benefit from your gear. Using these aids incorrectly can cause you further injury, so it’s important that you listen to your therapist’s guidance.

For those who don’t already use adaptive gear, PT appointments may change that. The therapist may recommend that you start using equipment that can help you get around better or reduce your chances of falling.

You may need:

  • Braces
  • Canes
  • Crutches
  • Prosthetics
  • Scooters
  • Splints
  • Walkers
  • Wheelchairs

The physical therapist can fit you for a wheelchair or another piece of equipment. A proper fit is necessary to ensure that you get the most benefit from your adaptive gear.

The PT may also recommend that you make changes to your home environment. For example, ramps or handrails can help you get around your house without falling. This type of equipment can also increase your independence.

Qualifying for Physical Therapy

Physical rehabilitation services can be beneficial for people in many different situations. For example, you may be interested in PT after a stroke, a sports injury or a workplace accident.

Therapy is particularly important for people with developmental disabilities. For that reason, our PT services at LISH are offered specifically for patients who were diagnosed with a disability before age 22.

Schedule Physical Therapy Services at LISH

Pain, stiffness and limited mobility can take away from your quality of life. Physical rehabilitation services can help you feel better and get around more easily. With a therapist’s help, you can learn to work with your body and improve your overall wellness.

To learn whether you qualify for treatment with a LISH physical therapist, call our central office at (631) 650-2510. You can also email our team with the online contact form.

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