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What Does Physical Rehabilitation Mean?

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A young woman sitting at a counter wearing a ruffled blouse as she intently listens to another woman with dark hair as she explains her physical rehabilitation plan.

You may hear the word “physical rehabilitation” pop up sometime during your life and wondered what exactly it is. Physical rehabilitation is a recovery method that seeks to restore the function of various body parts. People commonly undergo physical rehabilitation after having surgery. However, it can also help cure some types of chronic pain relating to the:

  • spine
  • nerves
  • ligaments
  • muscles

The people who create the plan for physical rehabilitation treatment for people who need it are called physiatrists and physical therapists.

Who Benefits from Physical Rehabilitation?

Physical rehabilitation helps to promote the wellbeing of many types of people. People who have suffered a stroke often loose function of their legs or other body parts, and a physiatrist or physical therapist can help them recover and even gain back function where it was lost. Physiatrists and physical therapists do an important job for stoke victims as having a stroke can be life debilitating.

Physical therapists and physiatrists often start working with stroke victims soon after having a stroke. The more time that goes by after losing the function of a body part, the less likely that body part will recover fully. Physiatrists and physical therapists also work with people who have sustained spinal injuries. Like stroke victims, people who suffer spinal injuries often time lose motor function of body parts. A physiatrist can help them regain some or all of that function back. However, physiatrist and physical therapists also work with people who suffer from arthritis and even back pain so that they can live normal lives without pain.

Can a Physiatrist and Physical Therapist Help with Back Pain?

Physiatrist and physical therapists, with the use of physical rehabilitation, help people who suffer from all types of back pain. Depending on the injury, they develop plans that specifically work for individuals suffering from moderate to severe back pain. The most important part of a both a physiatrist and physical therapist’s job is being accurate about where pain might be coming from and treating it accordingly. Physiatrists often set up treatment plans involving both physical rehabilitation and drugs, and a physical therapist will carry that plan out.

A physiatrist may refer people who suffer from ongoing back pain to a chiropractor for help depending on where their pain stems from. Chiropractors are another type of person who works in physical rehabilitation, and they specialize in spinal realignment. As opposed to physiatrists, a chiropractor will seek to cure what ails you without prescribing medicine, however, the scope of a chiropractor’s practice is much more limited because they only work with the spine.

Is Physical Therapy the Same as Rehabilitation?

You may have heard the term “physical therapy” used in conversation about physical rehabilitation. However, they aren’t quite the same thing. They are related in that physical therapy may be used as part of the physical rehabilitation plan, but it doesn’t have to be. Physical therapy is a treatment option for people who have either suffered certain types of injury or need relief from certain types of pain. Physical therapy is used for a variety of different ailments, but it aims mostly to help people regain function of their body using an exercise regime.

A physical therapist uses a carefully planned physical therapy exercise plan to help people who’ve lost function of body parts such as:

  • muscles
  • joints
  • ligaments

For example, if someone was in a car wreck and suffered an injury to their spine which made them lose partial function of their legs, a physical therapist would make a physical therapy plan. They would do this with the help of a physiatrist revolving around the movement of all the muscles in the legs and feet.

Daily exercise of the limbs which lost function typically sees results. However, early action is important when it comes to physical therapy. Physical therapists also help people with limited mobility in certain body parts due to injury. They help people with limited mobility using exercise as well as teaching them to perform exercises at home.

What is the Process of Rehabilitation?

Each person who enters a physical rehabilitation center gets an assessment from a trained professional that will come up with a detailed plan for them. Because many different people come into a rehabilitation center, there are many different methods to help them recover from injury or pain. Physical rehabilitation centers offer acute care for people who’ve suffered:

  • serious injury
  • stroke
  • brain injury
  • spinal injury

Acute care helps patients living with the consequences of a serious injury by focusing on specific areas of the body.

Physical rehabilitation centers also offer inpatient rehabilitation. Inpatient rehabilitation is for people who’ve had a serious injury and need more recovery time. Inpatient rehabilitation requires that person to stay in a rehabilitation center until they have regained their movement back. The next step of rehabilitation is outpatient rehabilitation. Both people who suffer from ongoing pain and who have had serious injury can benefit from outpatient rehabilitation. Outpatient rehabilitation is mostly used to keep regained function. However, some people may come for outpatient rehabilitation to help things such as chronic back pain.

A Family Chiropractic Clinic Can Help You with your Physical Rehabilitation

A Family Chiropractic Clinic specializes in chiropractic therapy. We help a wide range of patients seeking help with the use of physical rehabilitation. We pride ourselves on giving the best care possible and treating eat patient individually. Each patient has a right to the best care possible, and we make that true. Our team is here to help fix what ails you. We can also provide physical therapy sessions to help you ward off back pain or improve the function of your limbs. Whatever your needs are, we’re here to help!

If you would like to come see A Family Chiropractic for physical rehabilitation, please call us at (940) 566-0000!