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Will Physical Therapy Hurt?

Woman exercising broken arm in physical therapy

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Art of the Arm by DJ Lynn

Physical therapy isn’t always easy, and can hurt as you teach your body to repair and rehabilitate itself. Every patient is different, and each has their own threshold for pain, which is why communication with your physical therapist is so important. Discussing your specific goals—as well as your reactions to the therapy—will ultimately benefit your recovery.

Therapists are trained to pay close attention to you during your treatment and will do everything they can to diminish the pain. Physical therapy shouldn’t cause extreme pain, but it will hurt. You will feel discomfort and soreness during and after each session. It’s important not to confuse soreness with pain. Your therapist may suggest icing your muscles after therapy to decrease some of the symptoms that may occur.

If you think you’re experiencing more than just expected muscle soreness, or if you consider your pain to be severe, you should speak to your physical therapist so they can modify your treatment accordingly. 

<< VIDEO: Shoulder Squeeze Exercise

  1. Start in the sitting position with your elbows by your side.
  2. Slowly squeeze your shoulder blades together and hold for 10-15 seconds.
  3. This will strengthen the scapula and shoulder blades, preparing them early on for the rehabilitation process.

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