Joints can be damaged by injury and disease. There are exercises, minor procedures, and other treatments that can help ease pain and increase function and mobility. But for some people, these options only work for so long. If you experience significant joint pain and problems with mobility, and medical treatments aren’t working, your doctor may have recommended joint replacement surgery.
With physical therapy before and after your procedure, you can feel and move better than you ever imagined. Keep reading to learn how joint replacement physical therapy can improve your outcomes and your quality of life.
Physical Therapy Before Joint Replacement Makes a Difference
Patients are often surprised to learn that physical therapy before surgery is just as important as it is after total joint replacement. Preoperative rehabilitation improves strength and function in the affected joint and throughout the body to increase your likelihood of good results.
One key study found that nearly 80% of patients who did not have physical therapy before joint replacement required post-acute care in a skilled nursing facility, inpatient rehab, or with a home health agency. Physical therapy prior to surgery reduced the need for post-acute therapy by 29%. Those patients got to go home and continue joint replacement therapy in an outpatient setting.
It’s beneficial to connect with a physical therapist you know and trust, such as the PTs at Beltway Medical Group, before your procedure, so you can feel more confident and comfortable returning to therapy after surgery. Think of your physical therapist as your partner in this journey to regain your active lifestyle and independence.
What to Expect from Physical Therapy After Joint Replacement
After total joint replacement, a physical therapist may help you sit up, get out of bed, and start to walk. Generally, patients use a standard or wheeled walker to take those first steps. From there, your physical therapist introduces exercises to increase range of motion safely and gradually. Your physical therapist assists you with navigating everyday tasks during the early stages of your recovery, usually with a cane, walker, or other medical device. Physical therapists also teach practical pain management strategies and tips for reducing swelling as your joint heals.
As your rehabilitation progresses, you will perform more advanced range-of-motion and strength-building exercises. Physical therapy also includes functional training to perform your routine tasks safely and efficiently, and techniques to improve balance and body awareness to prevent falls and re-injury.
The goal is to get you not only back to doing basic tasks, but to be able to do the other things your knee pain limited you from doing such as walking to the grocery store or participating in recreational activities. Your total joint replacement physical therapy program is customized to your individual needs based on the specific procedure you’ve experienced.
Joint replacement physical therapy can make a positive difference in your results and your long-term mobility. To learn more, contact Beltway Medical Group today.
Have Surgery Planned? Contact Us to Set up Physical Therapy Services for Before and After!
Physical therapy treatment can help you achieve as much strength, stamina, flexibility, and improved range of motion as possible both before and after your surgery. The therapists at Beltway Medical Group are available to help you get prepared for surgery and support you through your recovery. At our physical therapy office in Fairfax, VA, we use a variety of manual therapies and teach you exercises you can do at home.
At Beltway Medical Group, a physical therapist can put together both a pre and post-surgical rehabilitation plan for an individual preparing for surgery. If you are having total joint surgery or any other type of surgery, work with the team at BMG to regain strength following joint replacement surgery. Let us show you how rehabilitation can help you before and after!