October is National Physical Therapy month and Dawn Cook, RN recognizes the importance of physical therapists’ role in the recovery of patients who have experienced life-altering injuries, and physical therapy sessions and evaluations are often included in life care plans. Attending therapy with a physical therapist can help increase physical functioning, reduce pain, improve mobility support chronic conditions and prevent secondary complications or conditions.
A brief history of Physical Therapy:
In the 1800s muscle re-education and exercises were being used to treat muscle and bone disorders, and in 1916 when the polio epidemic occurred, many patients needed support and muscle testing to improve physical functioning. After World War I, in 1917, there was a dramatic need and recognition of the need to support and rehabilitate injured soldiers. Between the 1920-1950s the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) was established and the need to rehabilitate injured soldiers and polio victims continued. When the polio crisis ended, there was a continued need for the rehabilitation of patients with other injuries, diseases, and conditions.
Modern-day physical therapists are independent professionals governed by a professional body, providing treatment and education in many different settings to patients across all ages and backgrounds, working closely with the interdisciplinary healthcare team.
For more about physical therapy awareness month see the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) website.