Physical Therapy | Teen Ink

Physical Therapy

September 23, 2020
By kimberlyyreal BRONZE, Salisbury, North Carolina
kimberlyyreal BRONZE, Salisbury, North Carolina
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
“do more for the world than it does for you” - Henry Ford

Change happens through movement as movement heals. A physical therapist not only aids, but creates bonds with patients on the journey to recovery. Being able to succeed in this field requires studious schooling and training. Along with this, the salary and daily effort makes this career difficult to turn down.

Helping those in such pain is not only a good deed, but also gives a sense of purpose and satisfaction. Physical therapists optimize quality of life through prescribed exercise and hands-on experience. A source explains, Physical therapists help injured or ill people improve their movement and manage their pain. These therapists are often an important part of rehabilitation, treatment, and prevention of patients with chronic conditions, illnesses, or injuries (What Physical Therapists Do). Having motion and movement is part of our daily routines. However, this is interrupted from stroke, sports/work accidents and aging leaving many in great discomfort. According to a website, “Physical therapists provide care to people of all ages who have functional problems resulting from back and neck injuries; sprains, strains, and fractures; arthritis; amputations; injuries related to work and sports; and other conditions (What Physical Therapists Do). It’s quite safe to say, physical therapists are a great helping hand.

Every career requires some sort of schooling or education. Physical therapists need a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree and a bachelor’s degree in order to be accepted into a variety of programs. As stated in a source, Physical therapists need a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. DPT programs typically last 3 years. Many programs require a bachelor’s degree for admission as well as specific educational prerequisites, such as classes in anatomy, physiology, biology, chemistry, and physics (How to Become a Physical Therapist). With this also comes licensing requirements. All states require physical therapists to be licensed in order to arrive at one’s goal. In agreement with a website, All states require physical therapists to be licensed. Licensing requirements vary by state but all include passing the National Physical Therapy Examination administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (How to Become a Physical Therapist). This education is simply preparation for students aiming towards assisting others.

A student intrigued by physical therapy must complete at least 30 weeks of clinical work. However, there are specific programs guiding the student in classes such as anatomy and neuroscience. A source claims, Physical therapist programs often include courses in biomechanics, anatomy, physiology, neuroscience, and pharmacology. Physical therapist students also complete at least 30 weeks of clinical work, during which they gain supervised experience in areas such as acute care and orthopedic care (How to Become a Physical Therapist). With this being said, some choose to become board-certified specialists. Becoming board-certified specialist would require passing exams and many more hours of clinical work. As a source claims, After gaining work experience, some physical therapists choose to become a board-certified specialist. Board specialist certification requires passing an exam and at least 2,000 hours of clinical work in the specialty area within the last ten years or completion of an American Physical Therapy Association (APTA)-accredited residency program in the specialty area (How to Become a Physical Therapist). Slow progress is better than no progress at all.

Pay for physical therapists isn’t bad. Its salary is right enough to maintain families at an all well-rounded state. According to a site, The median annual wage for physical therapists was $87,930 in May 2018 (Pay). If issues were to occur based on financial circumstances, the worst that could take place would be around $60, 360. In most parts of the US, families still have access to a healthy lifestyle. As stated “The lowest 10 percent earned less than $60,390, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $123,350 (Pay). However, never forget to save money as money tends to save households.

Daily routines and tasks aren’t the same everyday for a physical therapist. The work of physical therapists varies by type of patient. For example, One day, you may examine a new patient by reviewing their medical history and performing tests and measures so that you can identify the problem. The same day you may be involved in creating a plan of care for a different patient who has a condition that can be addressed in the scope of your practice (Work Environment). Physical therapy requires standing on feet all day and moving heavy loads. However, it could be the complete opposite and would just require scanning medical history or bringing about tests that day. As stated, We treat people who get hurt or injured for example in work or sports by practicing exercise with them. Sometimes we use special equipment to make the process faster. But we can also counsel our patients and make plans for rehabilitation (Clinton). Physical therapists stand their feet on the ground with responsibility on their shoulders.

Throughout the years, my father has been a produce warehouse manager, which requires heavy loading at times. Due to a couple injuries he’s had, he’s been sent to the Stewart Physical Therapy in Salisbury. I’ve seen how hurt and in pain he’s been in, but I’ve also seen the progress and growth he’s gone through. That’s the beauty of physical therapy. Not only do you aid a patient, but the journey getting there and creating connections with your patients is what really captivates me. With this said, I believe this career is definitely for me.

Education and training are crucial when on the path to becoming a physical therapist. Its salary may increase as time flies by and its intriguing daily tasks are something many can’t reject. Helping those with exercise and equipment in the battle of recovery and growth are important factors to this career. Nothing beats the rewarding feeling of helping hurt patients in urgent need.

The author's comments:

Physical Therapy has always intrigued me. I decided to write this piece, while in high school, for those considering this career. 

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