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Physiotherapy FAQ

Woman happy arms stretchIf you’re new to physiotherapy, you likely have questions. Below are some FAQ and answers to help you decide whether physiotherapy is right for you.

What will happen during my first appointment?

Information gathering is the first step. Your physiotherapist will ask you a list of questions about your medical history, any previous injuries you had, and your current symptoms. It’s vital for your physiotherapist to assemble as much information as possible so that a diagnosis can be given, followed by an ideal course of treatment.
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One of the things that makes us unique at Effortless Superhuman (ES) is that we can collect all of this information online and store it in our client management system. This process occurs before your initial consultation so that Stephen can review your answers and prepare for your initial consultation in advance. Why pay your physiotherapist $3 to $5 per minute to write down answers that you could have recorded for FREE prior to the assessment?

How will I be evaluated?

Regardless of whether you have neck pain, back pain, knee pain or headaches, the skilled ES physiotherapist will take you through the same precise system of analysis – a detailed head-to-toe checklist to uncover all of the dysfunctions in your body. Show More »

Why is a head-to-toe analysis needed when you have come in for shoulder pain? Well, the answer is pretty simple. Pain or dysfunction in the lower body can contribute to pain and dysfunction in the upper body.

Case example: ‘Ben’ came in to see ES Physiotherapist Stephen Hooper for right shoulder pain that he sustained while playing tennis. During the full body analysis Stephen measured the ‘knee to wall’ test that looks at ankle range of motion (dorsiflexion) and noticed that Ben’s left ankle could only bend to 5cm, whereas his right ankle was 13cm. That is a massive discrepancy between the two sides and likely a contributing factor to Ben’s right shoulder problems. Without a full body system of analysis, Stephen would never have picked this up.

During this system of analysis, the therapist will of course perform a detailed assessment of the area of your symptoms. So, in Ben’s case, Stephen carefully analyzed the neck and shoulder region, in addition to the rest of the body.

This head-to-toe analysis includes assessment of your nervous system (Neuro Dynamic Testing), and palpation of your muscles, ligaments, tendons and other soft tissues.

It’s from this precise, detailed initial analysis that the ES therapist creates your personalized summary table. This summary table is a critical component to our success in treating you.

It’s very important to not chase symptoms around the body. 20 years of clinical experience, working with over 10, 000 clients, has demonstrated that symptom-driven treatment and management is not effective in the long run. In fact, it fails at least 50% of the time.

That is why the physiotherapists at ES will base the effectiveness of their treatments on how these treatments change the dysfunctions in YOUR summary table. In other words, was the treatment effective in improving neck rotation or shoulder movement or hamstring muscle length. These are real, measurable changes that can be tracked and demonstrate to both the client and therapist that treatment is being effective and has them on the right track to recovery. (If you’re not assessing, you’re guessing!)

Is the assessment painful?

With 20 years of hands on clinical experience, our therapists have excellent skills in ‘manual handling’ and you can feel that difference as soon as they put their hands on you. Each assessment is carefully explained and You (the client) are asked to avoid pushing into pain during any of the assessments. Likewise, the therapist will feel through your muscular system and use your muscles as a ‘measuring tool’ to tell you when to stop moving. The muscular system is amazing that way, it guards you against pain and injury and alerts both client and therapist to when and where a movement assessment should stop. In this way, pain is minimized or completely avoided during all initial assessments.

How many physiotherapy sessions will I need?

And here in lies a very important question? And this is why it pays to find the most highly-qualified and skilled therapist you can find and pay them what they are worth to help you overcome your pain and dysfunction. Show More »

The skilled ES therapist will do several things to help answer this question for you:

  • The level of detail you provide on your ‘Intake Forms’ is very important for helping your therapist determine what is going on. So spend the time needed to provide detailed answers
  • The initial consultation and subsequent creation of your individual summary table will provide significant insight into what is going on and how long it will take to fix the problem. It only makes sense that if your summary table has 20 major dysfunctions then it will take longer than someone who has four.
  • At the end of your initial consultation, your ES therapist will schedule a Short Trial of Care (STC) for you. This STC will be 4 sessions of 20-30 minutes each in duration. Or normally 100 minutes of consultation time.

Are you worried that you could end up having 12-15 sessions only to find out that you are no better and have wasted a lot of time and money? Yep, we are too! That is not good for a therapists or clinics reputation.

And that is why we put a STC in place lasting 100 minutes. Using your summary table to guide our treatments, we use the STC to prove to both the client and therapist that our treatments are effective. Continually reassessments prove that our therapies are changing your movement patterns and helping you to overcome symptoms and dysfunctions. There is no guessing, these changes are real and measurable and are tracked session by session.

In more than 80% of cases, the client is either clinically clear (symptom-free and dysfunction-free) by the end of the STC or very close to completion. That’s a pretty amazing statistic, one that we have tracked with our clients for almost a full decade.

At Effortless Superhuman, our therapists will not treat past the STC if significant progress is not being made. Yes, four treatment sessions is all that is needed to start seeing significant progress … either a reduction in your symptoms or changes in your dysfunctions. If this is not happening then we have several other options that will still help you achieve your Good Outcome: We may refer you for a scan to help determine a diagnosis or we may call upon another skilled practitioner in our referral network of specialists to help assess your condition and provide a diagnosis. But we will not keep treating past the STC without seeing progress. That simply doesn’t make any sense.

So how many sessions will you need? An initial consultation plus a short trial of care (STC) of approximately 100-120 minutes.

What will my treatment involve?

The types of therapy that we provide will depend on what the issue is. Physiotherapists are trained in a broad range of different techniques. Your physiotherapist will determine which methods are the most appropriate for you. Show More »

Here are some of the most common treatments that are offered:

  • Lifestyle Management (Sleep, stress, movement, clean foods, clean water, avoiding a toxic and inflammatory lifestyle)
  • Manual therapy – a wide range of hands-on therapy techniques aimed at restoring movement around the joints in your body.
  • Massage – a wide range of soft tissue therapies including active releasing technique (ART), Rolfing, deep tissue massage, Anatomy Trains, and more …
  • Dry Needling – Stephen Hooper holds a Masters in Dry Needling
  • Retraining breathing
  • Trigger point therapy – either manual therapy or dry needling
  • Postural correction
  • Corrective Exercise
  • Functional Risk Profile

(It should be noted that we do not use any electrical modalities at Effortless Superhuman – Interferential or Ultrasound)

Your specific treatment plan will likely combine a range of strategies from the above list and will be dependent upon your Intake Forms, Initial Assessment and Summary Table findings.

Will I have to do anything between sessions?

Yes, as part of your treatment plan, you’ll be provided with lifestyle strategies, exercises, and other healing strategies to help you achieve your Good Outcome. This is a critical point to make. Most likely you ‘behaved’ your way into this episode of pain and dysfunction and so hands on therapy is only one element of your treatment. You will now need to change your behavior to support your recovery and return to a symptom-free and functional state. Treatment is not passive!

What conditions can physiotherapy help?

Our physiotherapists are highly-trained in treating an extensive array of conditions. With over 20 years of clinical experience and 10, 000 cases, there is not a lot they haven’t seen. Conditions such as neck and back pain, headaches and migraines, total knee and total hip replacements, sports injuries, sciatica, TMJ disorder, chronic muscle tightness, tendonitis and tendonosis, runner’s knee and golfer’s elbow. Pre-surgery, post-surgery, musculoskeletal injuries, arthritis, neurological conditions and so much more …

Do I need a doctor’s referral?

No, most clients do not need a doctor’s referral to see a physiotherapist.

How long does treatment take?

All initial appointments are 40 minutes in duration unless otherwise specified. Please come to the clinic 20 minutes early, relax and enjoy a cup of tea. Rushing in highly stressed will be detrimental to your assessment outcome. Likewise, don’t schedule any appointments immediately after your initial assessment. Racing out the door at a 100 miles per hour is not going to help you heal.

If you have additional questions that weren’t answered here, please contact us today!

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