Physical Therapy treats pain, instead of masking it

Physical Therapists ready to serve you at Glacial Ridge Health System

One hundred million Americans suffer from chronic pain. That is about 1 out of 4 people who deal with neck, back, shoulder, hip, and other problems that causes them discomfort. Is this you? Are you taking medication to relieve your pain symptoms? If so, participating in Physical Therapy can help reduce this statistic and help you manage your pain.

The APTA states, "No one wants to live in pain. But no one should put their health at risk in an effort to be pain free. Since 1999, Americans have increasingly been prescribed opioid painkillers. In some situations, when dosed appropriately, prescription opioids are an appropriate part of medical treatment. However, risks include depression, overdose, and addiction. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urging health care providers to reduce the use of opioids in favor of safe alternatives like Physical Therapy. HYPERLINK "" \t "_blank" Do not just mask the pain. Treat it! Choose Physical Therapy to manage your pain without the risks and side effects of opioids."

Physical Therapists and Physical Therapist Assistants are on the front line of keeping Americans moving. Physical therapy helps people treat conditions that limit one's ability to move and function in everyday life. However, at times, it may be hard to complete daily activities due to excessive pain. Physical Therapy can offer an alternative to pain medications by providing cost effective care, so that people feel renewed and ready to move without pain or discomfort. "Those who have turned to physical therapists for liberation from pain and immobility have found their quality of life greatly improved," – American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).

A Physical Therapy program is always going to be individualized to you. It will be based on your strength, range of motion, and past/current daily activities. At therapy, you will work on strengthening your muscles, gaining flexibility of muscles and joints, and helping take control of your pain. The program will build as you experience less pain/discomfort and as you get stronger. Therapists will also tell you the purpose of each exercise so you know what you're doing. They will make sure you are doing them correctly to ensure the maximum benefit.

It is important to adopt a "no excuse" policy. If you are tempted to say, "I hurt too much today. I'll do my exercises tomorrow," don't give up. Continuing to move and exercise while your body is hurting is beneficial in reducing swelling, stiffness, and pain. To help keep your body and mind on track, schedule your Physical Therapy workout time on a calendar and treat it just like you would a doctor's appointment. Do not cancel! Tell yourself you're training, not exercising.

Set goals for yourself and your therapist. You are less likely to bail on an activity if you have an end-goal in mind. Whether it's skiing, golfing, walking, picking up your kids, or standing long enough to cook a meal all without pain. Keep working toward that goal. Tell your therapist, your family, your friends, and even your co-workers. You will be more motivated to follow through on your exercises if you have a support group cheering you on. Celebrate goals, large and small, and let your support group celebrate with you.

Pain is real, but so is hope. Choose Physical Therapy as your next choice in reducing your pain. You are no longer going to be a statistic! Instead, you can begin the journey of managing your pain with the help of Physical Therapy!


Glacial Ridge Hospital is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3), 19-bed Critical Access, Trauma Level IV hospital located in Glenwood, MN serving Pope County and portions of the four adjoining counties. Glacial Ridge Health System is comprised of the hospital, two medical centers, an ambulance service, homecare, hospice, EMS training, and a fitness center. Through compassionate, caring and comprehensive health care services, Glacial Ridge Health System provides high quality services in state-of-the-art facilities which enhance the quality of life and promote healthy lifestyles for their patients, clients, employees, organization and communities.


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