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Physical Therapy

What is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy uses physical methods to assist patients of all ages with functional problems from injuries or illnesses. The goal of physical therapy is to help restore function, improve movement, manage pain and prevent the loss of mobility before it occurs.  Physical Therapists (most graduate programs now offer a Doctor in Physical Therapy DPT) treat patients with injuries, disabilities and disease, and can work with a variety of populations with a wide range of functional problems. Physical therapists spend time learning the functional limitations of their patients in order to make individualized treatment plans and to monitor improvement.  Physical therapy treatments vary by patient and some physical therapists specialize in a particular type of care (by patient age or type of therapy).  Physical therapists often move with their patients (demonstrating exercises and stretches) and spend a large portion of their days on their feet.


Physical Therapists typically do the following:


Explore these resources and organizations about physical therapy:

Source: United States Department of Labor: Occupational Outlook Handbook.  6 April 2012. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 23 June 2013 <>.

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