How Long Does It Take for Physical Therapy to Work?

Sep 5, 2023

How long does it take for physical therapy to work? This is a common question many people ask when starting physical therapy. Here’s what to know about when you will begin feeling better. 

Factors That Determine How Long Physical Therapy Will Take

There are many things that affect how long it takes for an injury to heal. The good news about physical therapy is that some people begin feeling better after a few treatments. However, it is important to remember that even if you start to feel better quickly, your injury may still need some additional time and attention to fully heal. The amount of time it takes will vary from person to person, but here are some things that can affect the duration of your treatment time. 

Injuries Simply Need Time to Heal

Depending on what type of injury you had, the healing time can vary greatly. For example, someone who has tendonitis may need physical therapy for two months or longer to fully heal, while someone who suffered many fractures in a car accident may need several months or more before they can finish physical therapy. In general, bones take longer to heal than ligaments or muscles. If you have had surgery or have a procedure planned, how long it takes for physical therapy to work may increase. When you begin working with a physical therapist, they can give you an estimate of how many weeks or months you can expect it to take. Your treatment plan could also change based on how quickly you make progress.

Follow Your Treatment Plan

When your physical therapist determines a treatment plan that is specific to your injury, you will be instructed to complete a specific set of exercises at a particular frequency. This recommendation is essential to keep your healing on track. Your physical therapist knows what is necessary to allow the muscles, ligaments, and tendons to build strength and recover. Patients who don’t follow their treatment plans often take longer to heal and feel better. 

Follow Activity Modifications

Part of what your physical therapist recommends may include modifying certain activities at work, at home, or likely both. You may be doing exercises according to your treatment plan, but certain movements or activities could slow your progress or pose a risk of reinjury while you are still healing. For example, someone with a rotator cuff injury would likely be advised to avoid climbing a ladder, and someone with a sprained ankle may need to give up their daily run for a while. Your physical therapist may also recommend modifying other essential tasks like cooking or bathing so you can continue to live your life during your recovery time. 

Choosing The Right Physical Therapist Can Make a Difference

Another factor that can impact the amount of time it takes for physical therapy to work is the quality of the physical therapist and clinic you are being treated at. There are a few things to look for in a physical therapy clinic, including: 

  • Are you being treated by a licensed physical therapist?
  • Do they have any specialties or certifications to better treat your specific issue?
  • Does the clinic have the right tools and equipment for your injury?
  • Is your physical therapist experienced in treating your issue?
  • Are their hours and location convenient so you can easily attend all of your appointments?

These are just a few things that can help you have a better outcome when seeking physical therapy. 

Get Individualized, Expert Care at PEAK Sport and Spine

PEAK Sport and Spine is a 100% therapist-owned company that takes a patient-centered approach to physical therapy. Our therapists work with you to create a treatment plan that will help you heal. Some of the services offered include:

With over 30 locations throughout Mid-Missouri, you can find superior physical therapy services that are cost-effective. PEAK Sport and Spine accepts all major insurance carriers and will verify your coverage prior to treatment starting. Visit the website to find a clinic near you or to schedule an appointment today.

Peak Sport & Spine Physical Therapy Locations

With over 50 locations throughout Missouri, Kansas and Illinois access to superior therapy services may be closer than you think. Browse our locations to find the clinic that is most convenient for you.