I have lived in and out of physical therapy office my entire life; it comes with the territory if you have a disease like Charcot Marie Tooth disease. Because of this I have learned how important it is to continue your treatment from home when you can’t because your insurance coverage ran out. While I am writing these tips especially for those of us who suffer from this disease I also would like to say that if you take these tips to heart they can really help anyone who needs to continue their physical therapy treatments.
Ask For a Physical Therapy Home Treatment Plan
The first thing you should do before ending your physical therapy is to ask for a home treatment plan. When you ask for something like this your therapist will do all that they can to make sure that you are prepared to continue working from home. This may consist of print outs of stretches and exercises to do while at home. They will show pictures as well as descriptions on how to do each stretch. Often your physical therapists will also provide you with some tools to use at home. In most offices this consists of various different Thera bands for you to use at home.
For instance my therapists have provided me with a variety of different bands to work up to using. They provided me with strengths that are too difficult for me to use now in hopes that I am able to use them one day as I get stronger.
Buy Therapy Tools to use at Home
I always find it great to look up the tools you use in therapy online because some of them might actually be reasonably priced so that you can buy them to use at home as well. For instance, I use spike balls in therapy and when I looked them up on Amazon I found out that I could buy them for around $5 a piece. I can afford to spend $10 to continue to work on my balance exercises from home.
While many items are just too pricey for me to purchase, like a foam therapy balance beam, I am still able to find a few other items that will help me at home. Another is small hand weights. I have a set of 2 lb. weights currently, but hope to need to purchase 3 lb. weights soon. I also am intending on buying a balance board. The ones I’ve found are a little different from the one I used in therapy, but I have a feeling this one will just be a bit more challenging and will help me with my balance even more for that reason.
Create a Routine
This may sound obvious, but it will really help. When you have a routine it will help you to remember to do everything just like you did in therapy. My plan is to create an exercise cycle that I go through. I always did everything in the same order at physical therapy so I figure I will keep that going at home as well. Another suggestion would be to decide how frequently you will do your routine. I am going to start at twice a week just like my therapy sessions were and slowly add more days until I am eventually working out most days of the week.
Don’t be afraid to do it on your own. You CAN do it!
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