Have you finally made that appointment with a PT to discuss incontinence issues? Kudos to you for seeking out physical therapy for your incontinence problems. As you prepare for your first visit questions may be circling through your mind. That is OK and is normal. Do not feel imitated by asking your physical therapist questions.
Physical therapists love patients who are engaged and choose to participate in their treatment plan. A fully engaged patient will have better compliance resulting in an improved overall outcome. The end result may be a happier and healthier YOU!
Carefully chosen questions will allow you to get to know your physical therapist and why they treat patients with your condition. No question truly is a bad question. So, let’s fire away. Below are some questions that should be on your list for your first appointment.
How long have you been practicing physical therapy?
Go ahead and ask - this question will provide a brief history of your therapist. In order for your physical therapist to have obtained the skills necessary to properly evaluate and treat incontinence she will have been out of physical therapy school for a few years.
What additional training have you received to evaluate and treat my condition?
It is ok to ask this question – this is your health and you want to be seen by a qualified provider. Here is the reason why. The skill set necessary to treat incontinence is an advanced skill set that isn’t developed in physical therapy school. Your physical therapist will have taken at least one advanced course past physical therapy school in order to properly evaluate and treat pelvic floor conditions.
How long have you been seeing patients with my problem?
Asking this questions will establish your therapist’s experience with your condition. Please do not be put off if you are one of her first patients. Often times, when a therapist is ‘new’ to a condition – that patient is her primary focus and challenge.
What can I do outside of my physical therapy appointments to help in my treatment?
Ka-ching! Great question to ask. Physical therapists love patients that want to work hard. Your therapist will LOVE providing you practical and progressive home program to complement your clinic treatments.
Do you have or know of any resources that help me understand my condition?
Again, a great question. The therapist will likely have printed materials to give you but will also have recommendations for valid and reliable online resources.