Recently I took my car in for a tune-up. At the bottom of the receipt was a phrase that resonated with me because of its application to health and wellness. It said, “ABC Auto wants to remind you; it’s better, and cheaper, to maintain than to repair.” Another well known phrase attributed to Benjamin Franklin says, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”.
Often as we live life, we have those little aches and pains that rear their heads and often those aches and pains tend to go away on their own. Our bodies do a pretty good job of healing themselves. Sometimes, however, those aches and pains start to become a little more nagging and persistent, and maybe they don’t stay so little. It’s tempting to continue to “wait it out” and think that it’ll just eventually go away. While it’s true that sometimes time is all that’s needed, the fact is the body sometimes needs help with healing, and those nagging pains can turn into bigger problems if left alone for too long. I’ve treated many patients after having shoulder surgery who didn’t have any big injury, but something that started as a nagging pain and over time became worse until they needed surgery. A little attention given early on could have prevented, or at least significantly prolonged, the need for surgery.
Physical therapists are musculoskeletal experts; we have been trained to diagnose and treat those little nagging aches and pains in a way that doesn’t just put a bandaid on the symptoms, but treats the root cause. More and more research is showing that early physical therapy can be as effective if not more so than knee surgery, back surgery, or shoulder surgery. The Center for Disease Control has recently recommended nonopioid treatment for chronic pain whenever possible, and physical therapy has been shown to be an effective treatment. With the dangers of opioid use getting a lot more press lately it is nice to know that there are other effective ways of treating pain, specifically physical therapy!
So next time you feel that ache in your shoulder, neck, or knee; or, if you’ve been dealing with pain for a while and have been trying to “wait it out”, come see us and let us help you get back to doing life!
This post was provided by Justin Carrier DPT, OCS.
Justin is a Physical Therapist at Hand and Orthopedic Rehab. For more information about Justin or to schedule an appointment with him click here or call 801-261-3321.