Physical therapy (PT), also referred to as physiotherapy, is a branch of medical science that treats joints, nerves, and muscles by skilled methods. Physical therapy programs typically include exercises that help patients recover or improve symptoms of injury or disease while achieving better joint mobility. Physical therapy is provided by a dedicated, educated, and skilled team of healthcare professionals who use several manual methods and help you with certain exercises.
AT Priority Home Care, LLC, people can get physical therapy with ease and comfort. These treatments aim to get rid of or minimize your pain to render maximum mobility in your body. This treatment may be provided at any stage of life.
Who is a Physical Therapy Assistant?
A physical therapy assistant is sometimes referred to as a PTA. He or she works under the guidance of a physical therapist. They have obtained specialized education to hold the title of PTA and are trained by the physical therapist. A PTA can treat the patients through massage, helping them with physical exercises, and aiding with certain body movements.
Physical therapy assistants also train patients who have issues with balance and provide them with appropriate therapies that suit their needs and help to improve their condition or injury. A PTA similarly assesses a patient’s medical condition and records their medical progress. The progress is further recorded in reports and submitted to the physiotherapist so that it can be approved and continued.
Why is a Physical Therapy Assistant Important?
PTAs usually work with a physical therapist. PTAs help the patients to restore their natural body movements and gain maximum flexibility and comfort. They also aim to heal and strengthen your injured muscles to prevent future problems.
Working as a PTA can be hectic, as they have a tight schedule and see several patients each day, but there is also a good deal of job satisfaction watching patients improve their health and reduce their pain. PTAs also have to monitor every patient’s progress and administer it to the physiotherapist. They teach various kinds of exercises to their patients to help with their individual problems so that they can also do their programs on their own. All these tasks are carried out under the guidance of a physical therapist.
While some individuals might see the word “assistant” and think of a menial profession, physical therapy assistants provide highly needed services that can affect their patients’ lives for the better. It is a demanding yet rewarding job that requires a skillful application. Following are some of the reasons why the work provided by physical therapy assistants is an important pillar of physical therapy:
- They provide keen patient observation: Many people might assume that a job focusing so much on exercise and massage would require a lot of physical strength and energy. But PTAs also spend many working hours over the long haul performing close observation in order to assess their patients’ progress and prepare the documentation that they submit. Additionally, PTAs often work directly with physical therapists to decide if treatments should be continued or changed in some way in order to increase the odds of a more effective or rapid recovery.
- Restorative massage: PTAs use massage and help their patients perform exercises according to their needs. It helps the patients to recover a normal range of motion. Different treatments may include remedial massage, exercises, and stretches, which are specially catered to each individual. These treatments and exercises may enable pain relief, reduce muscle strain, and improve overall blood flow in the body, which are all crucial to the therapeutic and recovery process.
- Ultrasound Therapy: Ultrasound usually refers to sounds of higher frequencies that are not audible. The ultrasound performed here is not the usual imaging procedure performed during pregnancy. Ultrasound is used for several other purposes too, as it is useful for more than just imaging. In this context, it is performed to help with a patient’s healing. Therapeutic ultrasound discharges sound waves which can increase blood flow, loosen the tissues, and help to reduce swelling. This therapeutic intervention can be performed by a PTA.
- Communication skills: PTAs easily spend most of their day engaged in conversation, whether it entails explaining the treatment plan to a patient or updating other healthcare professionals about the patient’s progress and recovery plan. PTAs must be great listeners, as well. They need to have effective communication skills to explain complex medical terminology and conditions to the patient in an easily understood way.
Further, they also have to keep encouraging their patients to help boost their recovery as well as their motivation to continue treatment. They have to help the patients feel comfortable and relaxed throughout their therapy sessions. These tasks are not always as simple as they might seem!
- Executing treatment: Though PTAs don’t design a patient’s treatment, their work makes a significant difference in the recovery of a patient. According to a survey, highly experienced PTA’s are in huge demand in the branch of physical therapy.
- Formulating important decisions: Though a PTA works under the guidance of a physical therapist, the PTA often has to use therapeutic decision making on the spot. A patient may be further injured or even become bedridden if they are made to exercise beyond their bodily capacity. A PTA has to heed the facts and make decisions if a problem arises. Too much therapeutic exercise may even reduce the recovery rate. Hence, decision-making skill proves to be one of the most important of a PTA.
Communication with Patient and Families
The treatment of a patient doesn’t stop as soon as the patient’s physical therapy ends. The most affordable and effective physical therapy, whether provided by a PT or PTA, involves a wide range of services.
The PTA has to make sure that the exercises are taught to the patient, the instructions are provided to the patient, and the patient’s family is also fully informed throughout the process.
A physical therapy assistant has to make sure that no aspect of treatment is left undone when working with a patient. Otherwise, it will render the rehabilitation process incomplete. If you are looking for Bucks County physical therapy, know that a PTA may often be the person who provides instructions and explains treatments or exercises. This needed work from PTAs can help patients improve and ensure the best possible rehabilitation outcomes.