How physical therapy helps get you back to work after an injury
Getting hurt on the job can cause you to go weeks at reduced wages while you receive temporary disability benefits. While you can receive a portion of your lost wages, you will still feel the economic impact of those days off from work.
Most workers who get hurt badly enough to require surgery or an extended leave of absence feel grateful to have workers’ compensation benefits but also anxious to get back to work. Returning to your job will mean more income and also improved mental health, as an extended absence can be both isolating and frustrating.
If you are eager to return to your job, you may resent the idea that you need to undergo more treatment, such as physical therapy, before you are really ready to resume all of your former job responsibilities. Is physical therapy really necessary for you to get back to work after an injury?
Physical therapy can prevent you from re-injuring yourself
Whether you broke a bone, strained a muscle or developed a repetitive motion injury from doing the same tasks every day, when you go back to work, you will have the constant risk for the injury coming back or getting worse.
A physical therapist can review your job responsibilities and help you understand the right body mechanics to apply to different tasks. A physical therapist can help you avoid injuries that can result from lifting, twisting and other physical demands at your job.
Physical therapy can reduce your pain and make you stronger
A serious physical injury can have lasting bodily implications even after the wound heels or the bone knits. Going weeks without using a certain part of your body can lead to weakness and loss of flexibility. Physical therapy can both strengthen the affected body part and improve your range of motion. Your therapist can even give you exercises to do at home.
Additionally, if you have lingering pain, physical therapy may involve services such as ultrasound treatment, massage or manual manipulation of fascia and connective tissue to reduce the pain near the injury site. The positive consequences of physical therapy can make it easier for you to get back to work with less pain and to avoid potentially re-injuring yourself in the future. With access to workers’ compensation medical benefits, your time off and physical therapy should have coverage.