5 myths about physiotherapy and what physios do
What is physiotherapy?
While most people have a general understanding of what physiotherapy is, the phrase “what is physiotherapy” is one of the most commonly Googled phrases about physiotherapy. Many people aren’t aware of the different nuances between, for example; a Sports Specialist Physio and a Musculoskeletal Physio and as a result, a number of myths surrounding physiotherapy and physiotherapists have been allowed to grow.
Remember that the ultimate goal of physiotherapy is to manage pain whether it is acute or chronic, to aid in the rehabilitation of injury and to help people avoid injuries and pain at work, on the sports field and in day-to-day life.
The first myth is the biggest one physios hear on a nearly daily basis:
- Physiotherapy hurts
The phrase “no pain, no gain” has been engrained into our vernacular over hundreds of years, but one place where that rule doesn’t apply is with your local Lane Cove physio. The goal of your physio is not to make you hurt; treatment shouldn’t hurt when the goal is to have you moving more freely and without pain. Your exercises may be uncomfortable at times and some treatments require specific progression that requires harder work, but pain is one of the ways your body is telling you to stop. If your exercises are causing pain, they may be hurting more than healing and your physio is not out to cause you pain.
- Physiotherapy is only for muscle or sports injuries
It is true that physiotherapy goes hand in hand with sports and treating the muscular injuries associated with them, physiotherapy is much broader and integrative than that alone. Physiotherapy is the go to for conditions associated with pregnancy, ageing, illnesses and accidents resulting in loss of motor function and prehab and rehab for those having surgery.
- You need a Doctor’s referral to see the physio
Both Doctors and Physiotherapists are first contact practitioners, which means there’s no need for referrals to see either. Physiotherapists can refer you for further scans like an MRI or X-Ray if required, so as a patient you have the peace of mind that everyone is working together. Save yourself a trip to the GP and head straight to Lane Cove Physio as the quicker you get treatment means quicker recovery.
- A physio is just like a massage therapist
There is a belief that physiotherapy is based around massaging in the same way a massage therapist works. While manual therapy and massage play a part in what a physio does, they are by no means the only tool in their kitbags. Massages are normally used by a sports physio or musculoskeletal physio in conjunction with a holistic treatment plan that has been individualised to meet your personal needs. A great physio will combine scientifically proven hands-on techniques along with an exercise program in order to get you back to optimal health.
- You only need to see a physio when you’re in pain
Pain itself is a complex thing and can stem from a number of biomechanical issues that may not seem related to the area where the pain is being experienced. While physiotherapists specialise in the rehabilitation of injuries as well, prevention really is better than a cure. In many cases, altering the way your body moves and improving muscular control or strength along with ergonomic adjustments around the house and at work can actually prevent a number of common causes of pain. Seeing a physio to improve these things before they begin causing pain will go a long way to ensuring you get to do more of the things you enjoy doing.
Whether you’d like us to bust a few more myths, treat that niggling injury or conduct a biomechanical or ergonomic assessment, our physios at Lane Cove are the experts. Our expert team works with you, assesses your needs and helps to guide you to ensure the most pain free solution. Give us a call on (02) 9428 5772 to make a booking.