Life seems to be on stand still for the last two months. COVID-19 has affected every aspect of our lives and livelihoods. We, the people, have seen worse than this but nothing like this. The way the social distancing has made our social interaction so different, it is something no one has ever imagined. With this limited communication, we should not ignore our needs which may affect our quality of life in the long run. Though the face-to-face communication is limited in person but it is possible in virtual reality. Telehealth is the safest way we have to communicate our problems with healthcare providers. Problems such as chronic pain can lead to Urgent or Emergency visits if not treated promptly. Psychological and financial strains can add anxiety and fear of uncertain conditions and exacerbate these symptoms.
Patients who were receiving Physical Therapy before pandemic have either postponed their appointments or opted for a better option of Telehealth to reduce the risk of infection. Telehealth has proven to be a win-win situation for the patients and population in general. Like many other medical services, one aspect of Physical Therapy requires touching and feeling while most of the session time involves history taking, visual inspection, education, demonstration, training and making patients independent with their daily living activities at home and at work. When a patient opts for telehealth, Physical Therapist can get medical history, history of injury, pain, accident, medical/surgical procedures, occupation, medications, and hobbies. Using telehealth, patients can have their ranges of motion measured, gait analyzed, posture checked, and body mechanics assessed. Since it is the patient’s own home or work environment, that is being evaluated, patients get a real time, habit changing advice from a professional without even leaving their homes. Photos or videos of therapist demonstrating exercises can be used by patients as many times as possible. Patient then can make their own videos for feedback or to get a consultation from Physical Therapist.
Assessment, re-assessment and referral to another specialist when appropriate can be done without any issue. In fact, Telehealth makes the process faster and allows the patients to get timely care they deserve. There are many platforms such as facetime, doxy.me, zoom.us or phzio.com to help in this process.
Try a free Telehealth consult with a qualified Physical Therapist. Conditions which can be managed through Telehealth are,
Fall Risk Assessment
Muscle strains and sprains
Low back pain
Balance Testing & Scoring
Post Surgical Rehab
Assistive Device Recommendations