Physical therapy can help you regain functionality after an injury, surgery, or suffering from certain conditions. However, you don’t want to have to be in physical therapy forever. Whether physical therapy isn’t working for you or whether you feel good enough to call it quits, your physical therapist should let you know when you can stop physical therapy.
Here, we’ll go over how to know when you should stop physical therapy and factors involved in this.
When Should You Stop Physical Therapy?
Generally speaking, you should not stop physical therapy until you’ve reached your goals or unless your condition is not improving and your physical therapist determines that you would be better served by another treatment method.
If physical therapy is too painful, you may need medical treatment. If you’re not seeing progress, you may need to talk to your physical therapist about adjusting your treatment plan. You may also need to reassess physical therapy as a whole.
Remember that consistency and patience are key with physical therapy. Just because you don’t feel better right away doesn’t mean you should stop. Talk to your physical therapist about realistic expectations for your treatment.
How Long Does Physical Therapy Last?
There’s no cut and dry answer here, because every case is different. Depending on personal healing rates and specifications about injuries, conditions, and medical history, how long physical therapy lasts varies.
That said, people typically spend about 6-8 weeks in physical therapy. You may spend more or less time in physical therapy than this depending on your progress and goals.
Unfortunately, insurance may dictate when you should stop physical therapy. Finances may cause you to stop physical therapy earlier than is advisable. Physical therapy may be covered partially or fully by your insurance and there may be a limit on how many sessions you can attend. It’s best to talk to your insurance company about what it covers and what its requirements are in order to plan appropriately.
Something important to note here is that some people may use all the physical therapy sessions that their insurance covers even if physical therapy isn’t providing them with any sort of relief. Don’t do this. If physical therapy isn’t working for you, talk to your physical therapist. Your treatment plan may need to be adjusted or you may stop physical therapy and try another treatment method that could help you more.
What If Physical Therapy Isn’t Working?
It’s important to note that progress with physical therapy may be slow. Patience is key, as it takes time for your body to regain strength, mobility, and flexibility. However, if you aren’t making progress in a reasonable amount of time, your physical therapist should refer you to other treatments that may be more appropriate for your specific needs.
If physical therapy isn’t working for you, your physical therapist will likely recommend that you stop physical therapy and refer you to other professionals who may be better able to help you.
What Should You Do If You Think You Should Stop Physical Therapy?
If ever you’re in doubt about whether or not you should stop physical therapy, it’s best to consult with your physical therapist. Good physical therapists won’t tell you to continue with a treatment that isn’t working. They know their personal limitations and the limitations of physical therapy itself. They will know other treatment options that may be better suited for you.
Physical therapists carefully monitor your progress (or lack thereof). They’ll adjust your treatment plan as needed in order to ensure that it works for you. So, if you’re not progressing initially, your treatment plan may just need some adjusting, and then you may see progress. Communication from both your physical therapist and yourself is key throughout the entire process to ensure that it is as effective as possible.
Every condition and person is different. People heal at different rates and what works wonders for one person may do nothing for another (or even make them worse!) Your physical therapist will work closely with you to formulate a personalized treatment plan designed to meet your unique needs.
Do You Need Physical Therapy?
Wasatch Peak Physical Therapy is here to help. We provide physical therapy for all sorts of different injuries and conditions, from sports therapy to aquatic therapy and more. Contact us today to learn more about the physical therapy services we offer at each of our different locations in Northern Utah.