This article was written by Leah Zinnert, Clinical Director of Neuro Therapy at Premier. Since joining our team in the beginning of August, Leah has used her expertise to drive amazing results for clients (sometime so quickly that even she can't believe.)
She's been able to help clients who had been in pain for years, seen every specialist in the books, and were starting to give up hope.
Whether it's the gym, tennis court, or working in the yard, It's been a pleasure watching Leah help people get where they want to be.
This week, she outlined what she's found to be the 7 key differences between Neuro Therapy and Physical Therapy.
I have been getting a ton of questions recently about the differences between Physical Therapy and Neuro Therapy. After writing and re-writing this blog post – I’ve narrowed it down to the 7 most important ones.....
I hope this answers your questions!
1) Hardware vs. Software
When you are rehabbing an injury in Physical Therapy, there are usually 2-3 major categories that you could be working on:
We call this our “hardware.”
But take a moment to think about what exactly is controlling all of those components – the nervous system right?
We call this our “software”
There are two driving factors to our recovery and overall performance:
After an injury those neurological signals can get interrupted, weakened or changed all together.
Long after the initial injury has occurred, tissues have healed, and we try to resume our normal activities – there are often underlying nervous system deficits that prevent us from returning to our full potential and increase our risk for developing further issues down the road if left unaddressed.
Moral of the story – you could stretch all day but if your nervous system (your software) is in the background saying “no, that’s not happening” – it’s not going to happen. Same with strengthening. You could work on strengthening your quadriceps muscle, for example, but if you’re unable to fully activate those fibers due to a past injury, pain, compensation pattern or protective mechanism, you may not be able to get the strength you’re hoping to gain.
Technology has advanced to allow us to tap into those things – your therapy should too!
2) Symptoms vs. Origin of Symptoms.
We have a saying in Neuro therapy…
”The location of your pain is typically not where the problem started, but where it ended up.”
For any of my PT friends reading this – of course this is how we’re trained to evaluate these types of things. You need to look at least a joint above and a joint below to assess properly.
In Neuro Therapy, we take this concept to the next level. Through our unique “search” process, we pinpoint your unique dysfunctions. We find the exact breakdown in neuro communication that is occurring due to past injury, scar tissue, inflammation, muscle dysfunction, etc.
What does this mean for you and the rest of our clients? More effective treatment sessions and often times a MUCH more efficient recovery.
3) Optimization of all body systems
Your body’s ability to heal and recover depends on a number of factors. In order to ensure your recovery is efficient (and doesn’t drag on for weeks/months), you should focus on giving your body everything it needs to recover.
As an example, you may notice that when you get sick, you feel the need to sleep for hours and sometimes days. Why?
Because the body needs sleep (among other things) to recover efficiently. The same principle applies to injuries (check out an awesome article on the importance of sleep in the rehab process here:
When you go through the Neuro Therapy process at Premier, you’ll receive targets for sleep, protein intake, and water intake. You'll also track your fatigue and stress from day to day.
It may seem like a lot of work – because it is. The point of Neuro Therapy is not to be easy.
It’s to get you better.
We are asking you to step outside of your comfort zone and really optimize all aspects of your recovery.
4) Time and Attention
I know that when I was practicing Physical Therapy in a traditional setting there were some patients that I wish I could have had more one-on-one time with.
Whether it was due to scheduling conflicts, double bookings, insurance limitations or clinic expectations, Physical Therapy sessions often felt a bit rushed.
During the Neuro Therapy process, clients receive 60 minute, 1 on 1, detail oriented sessions.
These sessions occur 4-5 days/week over the course of 2-5 weeks and are geared solely to helping you achieve your goals.
That’s right, no more months and months of therapy before you see results.
5) Passive vs. Active
Neuro Therapy is not a miracle cure. Yes, you read that correctly. I’m saying this to emphasize the point that therapy – whether it be Physical Therapy or Neuro Therapy – it is work, and you are responsible for earning your results.
Even if you’re at Physical Therapy, you can’t expect to show up 2-3 times a week for 8 weeks, lay on the treatment table, get massaged and do a few exercises with heat and stim and expect to be ‘fixed.’ You’re going to need to put work in on your own.
This is why Neuro Therapy works. It is designed for you to take an active part in your recovery, push you to your limits, and challenge you on a whole different level.
6) The Gold Standard – A plan tailored to your goals
After learning more about your personal history and needs, we design a plan specifically tailored to your needs… and we’ll hold you to it.
From day 1, clients know the plan, expectations, and targets for each day.
We are constantly assessing and re-assessing. Tracking your progress and updating your plan daily.
There are specific protocols in place for testing and trialing all the activities clients want to get back to doing.. No matter your goals – big or small – we will ensure that you can do those things successfully under our supervision before leaving us.
Not only are you getting an unforgettable therapy experience at Premier Neuro Therapy, you become a part of our family. We get to know you beyond just your pain levels and injury history. We are here to push you, encourage you, help you through the lows and celebrate all of your wins!
If you haven’t already – check us out on social media to learn more about what Neuro Therapy is all about:
Click to follow Premier on Instagram:
About the Author
Evan Lewis is a nationwide leader in Neuro Therapy and founded the Baltimore area's only specialist Neuro Therapy facility.
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