When going to your first physical therapy appointment, there are a lot of things you should bring. According to one practice, you'll need all of the following: your insurance information, your identification, your physician's orders, a list of medications you're taking, your medical history and, if required by your insurance, a copay. They also recommend bringing your appointment book so you can keep track of your next visit. Along with all of this paperwork, there are also four other things that you ought to bring so that you can get the most out of your appointment. Here they are.
Paper and Pen
You'll receive a lot of information during your first appointment, and it will be difficult to remember everything. To ensure you don't miss anything, bring a pen and paper so you can write down what your physical therapist says. They won't mind if you're taking notes as they talk. In fact, they'll probably appreciate your diligence.
Some of what you learn might be difficult to describe in words, and it could be hard to draw. A camera will let you instantly capture any information you aren't able to easily record on paper.
Having a camera is especially helpful if your physical therapist modifies any exercises or stretches for you. If you look them up online later, you might not be able to find the exact modifications that your physical therapist suggests. With a camera, though, you can ask them to model each exercise and stretch exactly how they want you to do it while you take their picture.
A Water Bottle
Physical therapy isn't easy. In order to make progress, you'll need to push yourself. You might find some exercises physically tiring. Bring a water bottle with you so you can stay hydrated without detracting from the time you have with your physical therapist.
Many practices have a place to get a drink, but walking to the sink or drinking fountain and back can take precious moments away from your appointment. If your appointment is 45 minutes and you spend 5 minutes walking to and from the drinking station, you'll lose 11.1 percent of your appointment time -- time that you or your insurer is paying for. Having a water bottle with you will let you stay hydrated and not lose any time, as you can take swigs of water while your physical therapist is talking.
Any Braces or Splints You're Using
If you're using a brace or splint, make sure you have it with you during your appointment. Your physical therapist might want to review how to properly use it, or they may want to modify stretches and exercises so you can do them while wearing the brace or splint. These are easier to show than explain, and it's easiest to show when you have the exact model that you use rather than a similar model that the physical therapy practice has on hand.
Of course, anytime your physical therapist shows you something related to your brace or splint, you should take notes and, if necessary, pictures. Since they may not be able to put on your brace or splint, you might have to ask them to take your picture wearing it properly, or performing a stretch or exercise with it on.
This may seem like a lot to bring to your first physical therapy appointment. All of these items can be thrown in a gym bag, beach bag, duffle bag or reusable grocery bag, though. Make sure to bring all of the items with you to your appointment so that you can get as much as possible from your time with your physical therapist.Share
2 June 2016
After struggling with months and months with back pain, I could tell that things weren't getting any better with my DIY methods. I was tired of having trouble every time I needed to move, so I decided to start working with a chiropractor. When I arrived, the doctor worked really hard to diagnose my condition, and then he talked with me about treatments--letting me decide how to proceed. It made me feel really great about working with him, and within a few treatments my back was feeling a lot better. This blog is all about improving your back pain by talking with the right professionals.