Posted by | March 22 | 2019

What to Expect During Your Physiotherapy Assessment Session

physiotherapy assessment

If you are seeking physiotherapy to treat an injury, regain mobility and strength to a stiff area of your body, or want to improve your well-being as you age, the first step is to book a physiotherapy assessment. Your first physiotherapy appointment will be an opportunity for you to ask any questions you have and for the specialist to evaluate your condition and create a plan for your treatment. Here’s what you need to know about your first assessment before you begin physiotherapy sessions.

Why Do You Need a Physiotherapy Assessment?

Before your appointment, take some time to think about why you are going to see a physiotherapist. Knowing the reason for seeking this service will help you stay motivated to meet your goals, even if things get difficult. Your goal must be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based (S.M.A.R.T) to be meaningful and effective to your needs.

What Happens During a Physiotherapy Assessment?

Subjective Assessment

The first session will begin with a discussion about your medical history and any medications you are taking. The physiotherapist will ask questions such as:

  • How long have you had this condition/injury? How did it begin?
  • Have you already seen a specialist to treat your condition/injury?
  • What makes the condition/injury better and worse?
  • How does it impact your daily routine?
  • What do you do for work and what are your hobbies?

Objective Assessment

The next step is to physically assess your condition/injury. The physiotherapist will ask you to perform certain movements and exercises to test your range of motion and level of discomfort or pain. The subjective and objective assessments are designed to rule out any serious problems that would require special medical treatment beyond physiotherapy.

Treatment Plan

The physiotherapist will start you off with a few treatments and exercises you can do at home before your second appointment. They will demonstrate how to carefully and properly do these mild treatments to give you some comfort between appointments. There are several techniques physiotherapists will use, including hands-on manual therapy, exercise, laser therapy, shockwave therapy, ultrasound, electrical stimulation (TENS), acupuncture hot compresses, and other methods with proven positive results.

How to Make the Most of Your Assessment

Dress Appropriately

During your first physical assessment, you should dress the same way you would for your future treatments. The best types of clothes are those you would wear to exercise: shorts, sweaters, yoga pants, sweat pants, tank top, sports bra, comfortable shoes, or sneakers. If your injury is in a private area like the pelvis, your physiotherapist may provide you with special draping for your waist-down.

Bring All Necessary and Relevant Documents

The more information you can provide your physiotherapist about your health, medical history, and current condition/injury, the more effective they will be at creating the right treatment plan to help you. You should bring extended health card plan, detailed medical forms, surgical history, recent tests relevant to your injury, and your doctor’s referral if it is required by your insurance company.

Questions to Ask & Additional Tips

Before your first physiotherapy appointment here are some questions or tips to make your appointment more effective:

  • Ask your physician whether physiotherapy is the right treatment option for your condition.
  • Contact your health insurance provider if you have one and learn about your benefits and coverage for physiotherapy.
  • Make yourself familiar with your medical history, medications, and present condition, and be prepared to share this information with your physiotherapist.
  • Take some time to think about your goal—what do you want to accomplish through physiotherapy?
  • Remember that your physiotherapist is a source of valuable information, so if you have questions about strength and mobility and reducing pain take this opportunity to ask them.
  • Be active and disciplined in your treatment. Think of it as a marathon, not a race.
  • Listen to your body—if an exercise, stretch, or treatment hurts too much, let your physiotherapist know and they will scale it back. Ignoring this step could risk more injury and prolong your need for treatment.

Get Better Mobility and Pain Reduction with Physiotherapy

The treatment you get from a physiotherapist depends on the type of injury or condition you’ve sustained, but these experts know how to provide effective solutions for a variety of physical issues. By preparing for your first consultation, you and your physiotherapist will have all the information needed to create a plan that will help you get the most out of your treatments. From relieving pain and discomfort to increasing mobility and strength, physiotherapy is still one of the most common ways to help people regain optimal health.

At MedRehab Group, we will work with you to treat your loss of mobility, injuries, chronic pain, and other physical health conditions. We serve patients in Brampton, Georgetown, Hamilton, Toronto, Richmond Hill/Maple, Woodbridge/Vaughan, and Pickering. We strive to do our best to meet our patients’ expectations. Contact us at 1-888-409-4058 to book your first physiotherapy consultation and treatment.

Image Credit: iStock.com/LSOphoto

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