Physical therapy clinics are places where people with injuries, disabilities, and certain physical conditions can go to get professional treatment for their ailments. The clinics offer treatments daily from Mondays through Fridays with some staying open even on Saturdays. These clinics are staffed with physical therapists and their assistants, all of who are board-certified and able to handle various cases as patients present to them.
Patients must be referred by other qualified medical practitioners for them to be seen and evaluated by physical therapists in their clinics. Many referrals come from neurologists, geriatrics, orthopedics and sports medicine physicians. Other doctors with specialties in pediatrics, cardiologists, podiatrists and internists also refer patients who have concerns with respect to their mobility and physical functioning. Therapists are not allowed to treat patients without these referrals.
Since these clinics see mostly patients with impairments in their physical functioning, the clinics are set up to accommodate these concerns to make it a safe and convenient environment for their patients. In addition, physical therapists see to it that they have everything in place to insure an accident-free environment.
The usual clinic set up includes a reception area, treatment rooms and a staff area. The treatment room contains treatment tables, a hydrotherapy section, exercise mats and other more specific equipment depending on the specialty of the therapist holding clinic hours there and depending on the needs of the patients.
Some of the basic and usual equipment in a physical therapy clinic includes an ultrasound machine, TENS, electronic muscle stimulator, hydroactor units, stationary bikes, paraffin bath, traction, gym balls, diathermy, parallel bars, exercise mats, weight training equipment, etc. These are used to strengthen and stimulate motor functions and treat other challenges that patients face.
Because of the nature of illnesses and ailments physical therapy patients face, the clinic must have an atmosphere of calm and positivity to it as promoted by its staff members to encourage and improve the patients’ self-esteem and well-being. For instance, the morale of a stroke patient who is used to independence but is now wheelchair bound is only to depression and low self-esteem. Clinic staff must be sensitive to this and trained to interact and care for the patient appropriately, extremely contributing to the patient’s improved self-esteem down the road.
A good physical therapy clinic must be equipped to handle the more common ailments, like stroke, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, neck pains, sprains, carpal tunnel syndrome, frozen shoulder, back pains, tennis elbow, osteoarthritis, other joint conditions , sports-related injuries and more.
Specialized treatments are offered by certain qualified clinicians with more in depth training in specific areas, such as geriatric, orthopedic, pediatric, neurologic and cardiopulmonary conditions. This is why physical therapists also work in conjunction with speech and occupational therapists, dieticians, orthotists, psychologists and even social workers. All this is to bring about comprehensive healing for the patient’s ultimate well-being.
In short, physical therapy clinics are a rich resource of healing for patients who are stuck with a variety of physical conditions thought about by diseases and injuries. As such, physical therapists are responsible for always continuing and updating their knowledge and training so as to present the latest innovative techniques in the treatment of their patients.