As medical technology and experimentation rapidly increase, physical therapy is undergoing rapid change. This medical field is becoming increasingly important to America’s Healthcare sector. From in-home care services to sports medicine and eldercare teams, there are endless opportunities for advancements and changing trends in physical therapy.
As one of the leading post-acute facilities in southern California, South Coast Post Acute stays on top of physical therapy trends. We embrace innovation, not just because we have to, but because it secures an effective treatment plan for our patients. Read our article below to learn about some trends in physical therapy.
Location Trends in Physical Therapy
Physical therapy is becoming more available to patients from anywhere and everywhere. Office-based physical therapy practitioners offer services to individuals who travel to their location for treatment. More and more individual practices are incorporating office based-physical therapy providers. For those who have mobility problems or are not conveniently located near a physical therapy office, home health care services are also trending upward. Home health care services involve going directly to a patient’s home to provide physical therapy.
The recent popularity of telemedicine has also added to the diversity of where physical therapy is provided. Telehealth visits are being accepted by more and more physical therapists. Using a smartphone, computer, or tablet, the physical therapist can show the patient activities and then coach them through the correct way to perform them from two separate locations.
Physical therapy is taking to the pool. Activities like swimming and water aerobics are considered to be great low-impact alternatives to out-of-water exercises, especially after knee, hip, or back injuries. Aquatic therapy allows patients to build strength and heal without causing further damage. The resistance property of the water helps patients reduce impact while building up muscles and joints faster.
AI, Robots, and Machine Learning
New technology, like AI, is making its way into every industry and physical therapy is not immune. Artificial intelligence and machine learning have the power to improve the way that physical therapists interpret patient information. AI uses vast information to help you distinguish between similar diagnoses and evaluate patient data.
Robots are also infiltrating the field, easing some of the more tedious physical workloads for physical therapists. Before, rehabilitating some patients required a therapist to crawl on the floor while moving the patient’s legs with their hands. Using motorized treadmills and exoskeletons, automation makes this type of therapy more efficient and precise.
Physical Therapy Trends with Wearable Tech
Some technology innovations in physical therapy might not seem as new as AI and robots. Wearable technologies such as smartwatches and fitness trackers are improving the way physical therapists collect data. Wearable tech can give a physical therapist relevant data about their patient’s health, medical history, and exercise habits. Functional physiotherapy machines can even track and analyze precise movements
Lasers and Light Therapy
Low-level laser therapy has been used in physical rehab for over a decade. Studies show that laser beam therapy is effective in healing common physical therapy issues such as internal damage and chronic pain, as well as being helpful in more severe problems such as stroke, spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, and degenerative CNS disorders.
LEDs are being used in light therapy to treat similar conditions. Some infrared lights quickly heal minor pains. Light therapy has more diversity in light wavelengths than laser therapy so it is less likely to cause burns and can even be used to heal burns in some cases.
South Coast Post Acute is Southern California’s Premier Post-Acute Partner
At South Coast Post Acute, we are committed to providing excellent services for our clients to ensure an effective recovery with a low chance of rehospitalization. We are passionately dedicated to providing the quality of service and care you come to expect from southern California’s leading post-acute care provider.
Through our innovative care and dedicated, experienced staff, we strive to provide the best patient care with a focus on reducing your length of stay when possible and preventing 30-day rehospitalizations. Contact us today to learn how we can help you on your journey back to full health.