Physical therapy is an incredibly complicated practice that involves years of training and practice before those skills can actually be put to use on people in need. After all that education is completed, however, a good physical therapist must always be ready to adapt their methods in accordance to newly discovered information. Like many healthcare practices, physical therapy is constantly changing.
To keep up with that change, physical therapists will have to keep learning and training, acquiring new methods to treat their patients. This can be an involved process, but if you want to excel in the field, you’ll have to keep learning no matter how experienced you are. Learn more about why physical therapists need constant training.
Moving Past Hands-On Treatment
Hands-on treatment has been a staple of physical therapy for as long as this therapy has been around. Manual manipulation is an effective way to get people’s bodies back in working order, but it’s just one way. Patients also have to perform some exercises on their own, with physical therapists only providing descriptions or demonstrations of those exercises and then leaving the responsibility to the patient.
Most of a patient’s time, of course, isn’t spent with their therapist, and there haven’t been many effective ways for therapists to properly evaluate how the patient’s home exercises are affecting their health. With the advent of new technology, however, there are ways that physical therapists can gather quantifiable data based on patients’ actions at home that can give valuable insight into their treatment process. Learning how to use and implement this technology can give your physical therapy treatments an edge.
While advanced technology can be used to monitor patients in a more efficient way, technology can also be implemented directly into the treatments themselves, offering new opportunities for patients to better themselves. Among the more popular pieces of tech for physical therapy are video games. When the average person thinks of video games, they probably imagine someone sitting on a couch, but immersive motion control games can actually do wonders for physical therapy patients.
When exercises are turned into fun games, patients tend to have a more positive outlook on their treatment. Motion sensitive controllers like those of the Nintendo Wii are great for utilizing games that involve mimicking movements similar to the ones required for traditional treatment. Virtual reality takes this a step further by immersing the patient in a computer-generated world that turns that dreary walk down a clinic hallway into a thrilling race to the finish line.
Robots and artificial intelligence aren’t restricted to the realm of science fiction anymore. These technological advancements are being implemented in physical therapy clinics all over the place, and learning how to use this technology to your advantage could give your workplace an edge. The good news is that you don’t even have to worry about the robot overlords taking your job. Physical therapy still requires a human touch for any kind of effective treatment.
With machine learning technology, using robotic assistance is a great way to evaluate your patient’s capabilities with quantitative data. These machines can put your patient through a series of movements and measure any resistance or response. Over time, they can use this data to show trends of improvement as well. With knowledge of this technology, you can alter the machine to gradually reduce its assistance as the patient becomes better at moving on their own.
Becoming a Physical Therapist of the Future
If you’re looking to continue your physical therapist training with some of the latest technology, you’re going to need a place to do it. TheraEx Staffing Services is happy to help you find a workplace that allows you to excel in your career like never before. Give us a call today to learn more about our rehab staffing services and start your journey to finding the right job for you.