Monday Motivator: Feeling pain? One option is physical therapy – Brainerd Dispatch

Dr. Jeffrey Donatelle

Sometimes we find our passions in unexpected places. From my own injuries and rehabilitation, I discovered a passion that combines my love for serving others and my desire to help people heal and thrive. I’ve helped athletes in the field, patients young and old in the clinic, and even had the chance to teach other physiotherapists! I worked 12 years for Big Stone Therapies and I really live my dream in what I do every day! Maybe you’re thinking, “I’m not (or no longer) an athlete, I haven’t had an operation, or I’m not dying, so it’ll be fine.” These may be commonly held beliefs about the need for physical therapy, but did you know there’s so much more we can do? ! We care for and treat everything from head to toe – we want to help you achieve full body wellness!

We have a pandemic of pain in our world, and more significantly in the United States compared to other countries. Physiotherapists are a first line responder to help you! We have an educational phrase, “Try PT first.” Before receiving injections, questionable surgeries or addictive drugs, try physical therapy. Many patients came to physiotherapy first and avoided all of that. And often the money, time, and impact on your body of medications, imaging, and injections can set back your progress! These can be a necessary part of your care, but not always a necessary first step.

So why don’t people seek physical therapy first? For many, there is a lack of knowledge about what therapy can do to help. I tell my patients that I want to help them “feel and function better” – I want to help them understand what the root of their problems are and how to help them get better and stay better. “I want to be hired to get fired.” Physical therapists can provide hands-on interventions to help you move and feel better, education, movement, and exercise prescription.

Don’t wait until you “want to die” or wait until the pain is unbearable. We want to help you work smarter, not harder. Physiotherapy is a great resource if you suffer from headaches, concussion recovery, craniofacial pain, TMD (temporomandibular dysfunction) or vestibular issues, dizziness or balance. It is estimated that 80% of people will develop significant back or neck pain in their lifetime. If your pain is related to the spine, knee, elbow, shoulder, foot or ankle, try physiotherapy! We can treat in clinic, but also provide home health services for those who qualify, where we come to you!

Physiotherapists have extensive training, including a doctorate for any licensed physiotherapist in the past 15+ years, and the potential for 10 different specialty board certifications, including residency and fellowship programs. If you or someone you know is facing a problem that physiotherapy could help you with, consider giving it a try! There are many physiotherapy teams in the area. It’s a privilege that we can use our passion to help you get back to yours!

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