What Are The Different Types of Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy is a medical treatment aimed at restoring mobility in the body.  It is most often associated with treatment for people who are recovering from injury or surgery, but there are many different types of physical therapy beyond just rehabilitation.  Often, the best physical therapists offer a wide range of services that integrate different treatments like chiropractic care and acupuncture.  By doing so they can collaborate to create individualized treatment plans based on the needs of the patient.  Here are the 6 main types of physical therapy.

Orthopedic Physical Therapy

Orthopedic physical therapy focuses on improving the function of the musculoskeletal system. It’s commonly used as treatment for those who’ve sustained injuries to their bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.  Orthopedic physical therapy helps patients relieve pain and improve range of motion after surgery.

Geriatric Physical Therapy

Geriatric physical therapists provide treatment to aging adults who are suffering from limited mobility and/or pain.  It provides older patients with relief from arthritis, joint replacement, osteoporosis, and balance issues.  It focuses on strengthening and stretching in order to restore mobility and strengthen muscles for long-term relief.

Pediatric Physical Therapy

Pediatric physical therapists provide treatment to kids under the age of 18.  Often, kids will need rehabilitative physical therapy to recover from injury.  Pediatric physical therapists can also help children with musculoskeletal issues or genetic disorders affecting the nervous system.

Occupational Physical Therapy

Occupational physical therapy is treatment given to a patient to improve their ability to perform everyday tasks.  It is often used to treat workers who are dealing with pain or indirect injury related to their work.  Occupational physical therapists will try to identify the root cause of the pain and rebuild motor skills to prevent reoccurence or worsening of symptoms. One common occupational therapy is hand therapies where experts will help in the rehabilitation of elbow, arm, wirst, and fingers.

Neurological Physical Therapy

Neurological physical therapy provides rehabilitation to patients with injury or disease to their nervous system.  It can be used to treat those with brain or spine injuries, but it could also be used to recover from strokes, cerebral palsy, ALS, Parkinsons, and Guillain Barre Syndrome to name a few.

Cardiovascular Physical Therapy

Cardiovascular physical therapists help patients improve their heart and lung capacity.  It often focuses on increasing oxygen levels in the body to feel and perform your best. It usually combines breathing exercises with strength conditioning so that patients can improve their lung function and maximize the oxygen levels in their body.

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