News & Events

What To Expect At Physical Therapy––From Exercise to Massage

Triangle Region / 15 Dec 2021

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by EmergeOrtho
What To Expect At Physical Therapy––From Exercise to Massage

Physical therapy (PT) is a vital aspect of patient-centered care, especially after orthopedic surgery. If you have pain and difficulty moving or performing daily activities following an illness, sports-related injury, or accident, your doctor may refer you to a physical therapist.

Many patients come into physical therapy expecting a relaxing massage during their appointments. However, massage therapy is just one element of physical therapy for tissue injury treatment.

A physical therapist works on the elbow of a person lying down

Without knowing what to expect, you might feel nervous about the idea of getting physical therapy. While it is normal to worry about seeing a new health care professional, the potential benefits of physical therapy far outweigh any fears you may have. Read on for a better idea of what to expect at physical therapy, and how to get the most benefit from the treatment.

The Main Components of Physical Therapy Appointments

PT sessions generally have three components as outlined by the American Physical Therapy Association, helping you to gain a sense of what to expect at physical therapy:

  • Assessment and examination
  • Diagnosis
  • Implementation of a treatment plan

These three parts help our therapists in performing a thorough evaluation to assess and identify your current situation. Based on the examination results and your goals, an EmergeOrtho physical or occupational therapist will create an individualized plan of care to address your injury, pain, or musculoskeletal condition. They will emphasize your active involvement and responsibility for exercise and pain-relief techniques.

Questions & Further Assessments To Prepare You For Physical Therapy

During your visit, your PT specialist will cover questions such as:

  • Where are you feeling pain?
  • What is the level of pain?
  • What is your health history?

Because EmergeOrtho––Triangle Region has a dedicated network of physical therapists, yours will already have a thorough picture of your condition and treatment history. They will know why you need physical therapy. To start therapy, the therapist will evaluate your:

  • Strength
  • Range of motion
  • Flexibility
  • Posture
  • Mobility
  • Balance
  • Coordination
  • Skin integrity
  • Muscle function

What To Expect At Physical Therapy: Advanced Treatments

Soft tissue and joint mobilization

Your treatment plan may involve hands-on joint and soft tissue mobilization. The therapist may assess and treat the joint mobility or soft tissue to relieve pain and promote blood flow. They may also move your joints and muscles through different stretches to increase your range of motion and flexibility.


Exercise is a critical component of most treatment plans as outlined by your physical or occupational therapist. Your PT will walk you through specific stretches and exercises to help you move and feel better and give you a set of exercises to do at home. It is important to be consistent and give it your best effort.

More advanced treatments provided at EmergeOrtho, depending on your location, may include:

Physical Therapy at EmergeOrtho

Hopefully, you now have a more complete sense of what to expect at physical therapy.

EmergeOrtho’s comprehensive therapy services department includes a team of licensed physical therapists, certified hand therapists, occupational therapists, certified athletic trainers, physical therapist assistants, occupational therapist assistants, and physical therapy aides dedicated to helping patients recover after an orthopedic injury or surgery.

Self-schedule an appointment with an EmergeOrtho––Triangle Region physical therapist today to discuss your options after surgery. You can also call us any time at (919) 220-5255.

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A New Level Of Orthopedic Care Has Emerged

As an orthopedic urgent care patient, you can expect prompt treatment for unexpected injuries and acute symptoms from orthopedic conditions. EmergeOrtho-Triangle Region’s walk-in services ensure you will get an immediate diagnosis and treatment for quick relief and to avoid a long wait and a more expensive trip to the ER. Skip the wait and reserve your spot today.