Your doctor may prescribe therapy at one of our Physical Therapy Centers. Physical Therapists are health care professionals educated in anatomy and physiology, the study of the mechanical and physical functions of the human body. Physical therapy is used to rehabilitate injured joints, tendons and ligaments so that you can return to your daily activities as quickly and safely as possible.
Riverside offers physical therapy in an outpatient setting at 8 convenient locations on the Peninsula and the Middle Peninsula.
Most insurance companies cover Riverside physical therapy services if you have a physician referral or prescription. Call us before your initial visit and we will confirm your insurance benefits for you. In addition, we will handle billing your insurance company once treatment has begun.
What to expect from physical therapy
During physical therapy, wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing such as sweat pants or shorts and a T-shirt.
Your treatment will begin with a thorough evaluation. You will be asked questions about your overall health, lifestyle and activities. Your therapist will assess the current condition of your back and neck function including your level of pain, range of motion and strength. You and your therapist will then establish treatment goals and you will be given a “Road to Recovery” customized treatment plan.
As you begin receiving physical therapy, the focus will first be on relieving your pain. To help reduce pain, a physical therapist can apply a variety of treatments, such as heat, ice, ultrasound, electrical stimulation and muscle-release techniques to your back. You will then work on strengthening your back and abdomen muscles, ligaments and tendons with a goal of preventing future pain.
For neck conditions, your physical therapist may use traction. Traction is the process of using weights and pulleys to gently stretch your neck and keep it immobilized. This therapy may provide relatively fast relief of pain related to nerve root irritation. You may experience relief for several hours or even days.
Expect to receive an exercise program your therapist will ask you to follow between sessions. You can do your excercises at home or at one of our fully equipped Riverside Fitness and Wellness Centers. As your muscle function and strength improves, you will receive new, more challenging exercises to ensure that your progress continues.
Education is a part of your physical therapy. You will learn how to avoid further injury and if you have arthritis, you will be taught strategies for living with reduced mobility and exercises that help keep your supporting muscles strong.