What To Expect at Your First Physical Therapy Appointment

Injuries can happen in a myriad of ways. Car accidents, slip and falls, or even stretching the wrong way can lead to strains and other physical problems. However, age can also play a factor in mobility restrictions. Whatever ways your body is currently limiting or failing you, working with a physical therapist can help you regain some comfort and movement, and depending on the type of injury, you may one day feel 100% again.

However, every journey begins with a single step, and for rehabilitation, that step is the initial physical therapy appointment, as a physical therapist, like from AmeriWell Clinics, can explain. There is nothing to be nervous about when going in for your first visit, but there are a few things to consider and know.

Preparing for Your Visit

In preparation for your first visit with a physical therapist, it is crucial to understand the facts surrounding your injury. The PT will likely start the appointment with an interview. They will want to know when and how the problem began, the recurrence of symptoms, the evolution of pain, and how the injury affects mobility. Knowing the history and circumstances of your pain will make answering any questions easier.

Planning Your Outfit

While many people do not worry about what they wear to the doctor’s office, going to a PT is different. You will need to wear clothing that is comfortable, breathable, and flexible. If you are going in for leg, hip, or knee treatments, you should wear shorts because they allow for more significant movement and freedom. However, if you are worried you may make the wrong choice, you can always call ahead and ask what to wear.

Understanding the Initial Examination

The first portion of the appointment is the interview. After asking several clarifying questions, the PT will want to perform a general examination to identify any physical impairments or mobility issues. You do not need to worry about what to do or how to act during the exam because the PT will give clear and direct instructions.

Creating a Treatment Plan

After the initial examination, the therapist will discuss a plan for moving forward. They will identify the areas they want to work on with you and determine the frequency of visits. The PT will likely have a timeline for your treatment and recovery in mind, but do not expect it to be too specific because everyone heals at their own rate.

Do you have an injury that keeps you from being active? Contact a local physical therapist to schedule an appointment and initial examination.