After a surgery or injury, it’s often very rare for one and only one treatment to help you recover. Recovery is typically a multi-faceted approach that involves a combination or rest, anti-inflammatory medications, heat/ice therapy and physical therapy in order to see the best results. There are also some things you’ll want to consider doing alongside your physical therapy routine that are not classified as treatments per se, but they can help to improve the success of your total recovery. Below, we take a look at five habits and activities to pursue alongside your physical therapy program to maximize the benefits of your program.
Do These 5 Things In Addition To Physical Therapy
If you do these five things regularly while you’re working your way through your physical therapy routine, we’re confident that you’ll be giving your body the best chance at a full recovery.
- Improve Your Diet – Making gradual improvements to your diet can do wonders for your health as you work your way through a physical therapy program. Not only can you draw energy to follow through on your physical therapy program from your diet, but it can also help you lose weight, which will take stress off a recovering area. Conversely, a poor diet can put more strain on your body, prolonging recovery.
- Quality Sleep – Sleep is also imperative while you’re recovering from an injury or surgery. Sleep is a time when your body is not being physically tested, which allows the body to focus on the healing process. You can’t just sleep for six weeks and expect your body to be fully healed, but when paired with a physical therapy program, good quality sleep can help to enhance the results of your exercise program. On the flip side, constantly being tired can make it more difficult for you to follow through with your therapy obligations.
- Give Up Smoking – If you’re a smoker, really work to curb your habit or kick it all together. Smoking restricts blood vessels and makes it harder for oxygenated blood to provide nutrients to recovering structures. It’s never too late to kick the habit and help healthy blood reach structures more easily.
- Drink Plenty Of Water – On the topic of circulation and blood flow, it’s very important to stay hydrated throughout the day, especially if you’re sweating during exercise or a physical therapy program. When we are dehydrated, our blood vessels constrict and limit healthy blood flow throughout the body. Our bodies need this healthy, oxygenated blood to aid in the healing process, so drink plenty of water each and every day to help with this.
- Journal – Finally, many people find it helpful to document their physical therapy journey in a recovery journal. Writing down your thoughts and your activities helps you more easily see your progress, and it can help remind you which issues you want to bring up to your physical therapist. Journaling can help to keep you in a positive mindset, which is crucial because therapy can be frustrating at times. Consider keeping a diary or log book of your PT sessions so that you can view your progress and keep your eyes on the end goal.
If you do these five things alongside your physical therapy program, we’re confident you’ll be giving your body the best chance at making a full recovery. For more tips or for help with your recovery after an injury or surgery, reach out to the team at OrthoRehab Specialists today.
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