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Debunking 6 Common Physiotherapy Myths

Updated: Mar 24, 2023

Physiotherapy is an important part of the healthcare industry, but there are still some myths surrounding it. Most people wouldn't even think physiotherapy will benefit them.

To help clear up some confusion and uncertainty, we'll debunk six common physiotherapy myths.

Myth 1: Physiotherapy is Going to Hurt

The myth that physiotherapy will hurt is a common misconception. In reality, the goal of physiotherapy is to improve strength and mobility while reducing pain, discomfort and swelling. Our physiotherapists use a variety of exercises, stretches and treatments to help individuals reach their goals.

During a session, our physiotherapist will assess the individual’s condition and design a treatment plan tailored specifically to their needs. The therapist may also provide advice on how to prevent or manage injuries in the future. While some exercises may cause temporary discomfort during treatment sessions, these activities should never be painful or cause lasting harm.

Our therapists will adjust their approach if any pain or discomfort is experienced during treatment.

With proper guidance from an experienced professional, physiotherapy can provide long-lasting relief from pain and improved quality of life without causing further injury.

Myth 2: I'll Need Surgery First, then Physiotherapy

Needing surgery first before physiotherapy is not necessarily the case and many people can benefit from physiotherapy prior to any surgical intervention. It can help reduce pain and inflammation, improve mobility and strengthen muscles around the injury or affected area.

Depending on the severity of the injury or condition, this could potentially eliminate the need for surgery altogether. In other cases, physiotherapy may be recommended as a way to prepare for surgery by strengthening the surrounding muscles and improving the range of motion in order to have better outcomes following surgery.

Ultimately, it is important that you consult with your medical healthcare professionals to get a personalised treatment plan to fit your needs.

Myth 3: A Referral from a Doctor is Needed Before Seeing a Physiotherapist

A referral from a doctor is needed before seeing a physiotherapist is not true. While you can get a referral from your doctor for physio treatment, it isn’t necessary. In fact, we meet many individuals who have accessed our physiotherapy services without a doctor's referral.

If you have an injury or condition that requires specialised treatment, such as post-operative care or rehabilitation, then seeing a doctor may be recommended before visiting a physiotherapist.

However, if you are looking for preventative care or relief from aches and pains due to everyday living, then you don’t need to see your doctor first in order to see a physio. You can simply make an appointment with us and receive the appropriate treatment right away.

Myth 4: Physiotherapy is Only for Muscle Injuries or Athletes

Our therapists use evidence-based interventions to improve, maintain and restore the body’s functionality after an injury or illness. Contrary to popular belief, physiotherapy can help with more than just muscle injuries.

Athletes may use physiotherapy to improve their performance and prevent future injuries, but it can be used just as effectively by the elderly, children, and even those who are not involved in sports. It can also be used to treat conditions such as joint pain, neurological impairments, and even post-operative care. In addition, it can provide relief from chronic conditions such as arthritis and sciatica.

Physiotherapists are experts in assessing individual needs and creating personalised treatment plans to restore movement and functionality regardless of the cause.

By utilising evidence-based techniques such as manual therapy, exercise prescription, electrotherapy, education on lifestyle modifications and more, physiotherapy can help people regain control over their lives.

Myth 5: Physiotherapy Takes Too Long

The myth that physiotherapy takes too long is often a misconception due to the fact that the patient's healing process is a gradual one. Physiotherapy can be done in as little as an hour or two, and it is important to remember that the length of treatment depends on the severity of the injury or condition.

In most cases, physiotherapy treatments are scheduled for once or twice a week, with additional sessions as needed. The goal of physiotherapy is to help patients improve their mobility, strength, balance and coordination over time in order to restore their quality of life.

With regular visits and consistent exercise programs tailored to each individual’s needs, most people should experience significant improvements within a few weeks.

Myth 6: Physiotherapy is Not Safe During Pregnancy

Physiotherapy during pregnancy can be very beneficial, as it helps to reduce pain, improves posture and supports the body in preparation for childbirth.

When working with pregnant women, our therapists use special techniques that are perfectly safe and adapted to the specific needs of their patients. These techniques help to alleviate common pregnancy discomforts such as back pain, neck stiffness, headaches and pelvic instability.

Furthermore, our therapists can advise on how to exercise safely during pregnancy and teach breathing techniques and postural exercises that may be used during labour.

Therefore, physiotherapy is an excellent way to promote health and well-being throughout the entire pregnancy period.

We're ready to help!

So now that you know a little more physio fact from physio fiction, you might be realising that we can help you with your own situation.

Every injury or condition is extremely unique and we will work with you to explore the best treatment options. Get in touch with our team and let’s make sure that you’re living pain-free.

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