Sustaining an injury or suffering from an illness that affects your physical well-being and leaves you unable to function as you normally would, can be painful, frustrating, and depressing all at once. It can seem very scary for the person who is suddenly forced to change the way they go about their daily routine and question if things will ever go back to “normal” again. For those looking not only for pain relief but also a way to restore function and have that normalcy again, a physiatrist may be the answer.
Knowing whether or not a physiatrist is right for you means you need to understand what they are and how they help, so let’s dive right in.
What is a Physiatrist?
Most people are familiar with physical therapists, chiropractors, and massage therapists, and they understand that each of these professions can target different areas of concern and provide you with varying results and solutions. As explained on the Echiro Practor website, physiatrists can offer some of the same benefits but are an entirely different profession and approach.
Often referred to as rehabilitation physicians, these are medical doctors who work in the field of PM&R, which stands for physical medicine and rehabilitation. They are able to treat conditions that affect a person’s nerves, spinal cord, brain, bones, ligaments, joints, tendons, and muscles. The goal is to help the patient regain function. As well, they can help the patient with pain management, which is often one of the biggest issues people can face.
All solutions are non-surgical, and the physiatrist takes the approach of healing the whole body, not just the area that is injured or affected. This means they will work on your bones, nerves, and muscles. In that sense, it can be a more thorough and complete approach that may offer better results since the entire body is being examined and treated.
There are no age restrictions as far as patients go, as a physiatrist can treat adults and kids.
How Can They Help You?
So, how exactly might a physiatrist be able to help you? Because physiatrists deal with so many different kinds of issues, there’s a good chance that they can help you with your pain and disability. They use a variety of diagnostic tools and imaging tests to first figure out the problem, and then use that information to come up with a treatment plan.
The main concern of the physiatrist is the quality of life for the patient, so this means they are looking for non-surgical treatments that will improve the patient’s quality of life. This can include prescribing massage therapy, assistive devices, biofeedback, hot/cold therapy, therapeutic exercise, speech therapy, a psychiatrist or psychologist, and more. They will work with a team of professionals to improve your health.
Worth Consulting With
Because a physiatrist can help with so many different issues and take that full-body approach, it’s often well worth a patient’s time to at least have a consultation and get a better idea of how they can be assisted.