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What is physical therapy?
Physical therapists are movement experts who improve quality of life through prescribed exercise, hands-on care, and patient education for individuals of all ages.As an important part of the rehabilitation process, you may be prescribed physical therapy as treatment after an injury or illness.
Physical therapy is a specialty of physical medicine that uses exercises to help you relieve pain, regain or improve physical function and help prevent future injury, while occupational therapy often involves activities that use fine motor and cognitive skills to improve your ability to do daily tasks.
Our physical therapists work with the main goal of helping you return home and to get your back to doing the activities you enjoy.
What does physical therapy treat?
Physical therapy helps people regain mobility and relieve pain for conditions and injuries including:
Physical therapy can range from intensive exercises that require the therapist’s help to exercises you can do in the comfort of your own home. Our goal is to help you get back to everyday movements such as walking, climbing stairs and other physical activities.
What happens at a physical therapy appointment?
Before you see a physical therapist, you will need a referral. You can get a referral for physical therapy from primary care doctors, physiatrists, geriatricians, pediatricians, sports medicine doctors, orthopaedic surgeons neurologist, podiatrist, neurosurgeon or dentist.
At your first appointment, your therapist will interview you, perform tests and work with you to understand your personal goals. They will then further teach you about your condition and set clear goals and expectations for your recovery plan. They will also collaborate with your referring medical professional to create a robust treatment plan to help you reach your long-term goals.
At Geisinger, our physical therapists work with people in our hospitals seven days a week, often starting on the same day as surgery, so you can start your therapy as soon as possible. The sooner you begin your physical therapy, the more successful your recovery will be.
Orthopaedic care at Geisinger
No matter your orthopaedic needs, our team can help you get back to your active lifestyle. We offer:
- World-class care, close to home: Our specialists are available inside every Geisinger hospital, and at several outpatient locations. Leading-edge treatment options and tailored-to-you care are backed by the expertise and innovation of a nationally renowned health system.
- Comprehensive orthopaedic care: From joint replacement, sports medicine and chiropractic care to a world-renowned spine surgery program, you get unmatched expertise for orthopaedic conditions. Trust a team that’s experienced in treating a wide range of orthopaedic conditions, including bone and joint pain; injuries from sports, falls and fractures; and the wear and tear of daily life.
- Better, faster healing: Tried-and-true methods keep you on the path to healing, such as our ProvenCare® program, which identifies and consistently provides the best treatment for specific conditions. This means you spend less time in the hospital and recover faster.
- Orthotic care: Our orthotics specialists provide custom braces and shoes that help treat several types of foot and ankle pain, foot complications related to diabetes and more. Treatment devices are available for people of all ages and are just one of the ways we help runners and other athletes take care of their feet.
- Orthopaedic urgent care: With five locations and no appointment necessary, our Orthopaedic Urgent Care locations are ready to treat children and adults when sudden injuries, like minor sprains, strains or simple fractures, occur.