Best 5 Ways to Prepare for your First Physiotherapy Appointment

Right now, our amazing team at Surrey Physio are seeing over 250,000 physiotherapy appointments each year. Let’s look at some of the best five tips for preparing your first physio appointment.

Physiotherapy is an integral part of patient care, as it promotes mobility, functionality, and overall health. As with any other healthcare visit, being well-prepared for your first physiotherapy appointment can help you get the most out of your session. Here are our top five preparation tips:

1. Recognise Your Pain and Symptoms

Before your first appointment, take the time to identify your symptoms and pinpoint the locations where you are experiencing pain or discomfort. Think about the onset of pain, the activities that alleviate or exacerbate it, and any changes in intensity. Consider things that aggravate your pain and things that make your pain worse. Having a thorough comprehension of your symptoms enables your physiotherapist to develop an effective treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs. Also be specific, it saves time to get right to the nitty gritty.

2. Dress in comfortable attire

Physio frequently involves a variety of exercises and stretches; therefore, it is essential to wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothing that does not restrict movement. Depending on your condition, your therapist may need access to the area where you are experiencing pain or discomfort; therefore, you should consider wearing clothing that allows for easy access to that area. If you have a hip problem, please wear shorts. You’d be amazed how many people turn up in tight jeans complaining of hip pain.

3. Be Realistic with Your Requests/Questions

The physiotherapist must have a comprehensive understanding of your health in order to provide effective treatment. Some patients love to ask questions – and that’s fine. Just be realistic with the time you have with your physio. I had a patient come to see me 3 weeks ago, she had a lot of questions and had brought in an MRI scan which she asked me to look at. We looked at the scan, and I answered questions about it, and we completed a case history and examination. At the end of the appointment, she said to me “are you not going to treat me?”. If you have a lot of questions or a complicated history, it’s well worth booking a double slot.

4. Arrive early, relax, and Enjoy the Experience

Plan to arrive early for your initial appointment. This allows time for filling out paperwork, relaxing, and acclimating to the new environment. Reducing anxiety and feeling at ease can enhance your experience overall. As physios we’re a super friendly bunch. We’re not here to hurt you. You are in a safe environment where we are trying our best to help you.

5. Be Open and Honest

Effective treatment requires candour. Be forthright about your pain levels, any fears or apprehensions, and your therapy goals. Your physiotherapist is there to assist you and can tailor treatment to your desired outcomes and level of comfort.

Your first physiotherapy appointment does not have to be an intimidating experience. You can pave the way for a successful and beneficial physiotherapy journey with an understanding of your symptoms, the appropriate attire, the necessary documents, prompt arrival, and honest communication.

Improving your health is a partnership

We’ll do our best to help you, but we need your buy-in too. We might ask you some tough questions. You might be expecting us to fix you. However, we help your body to fix itself. There may be questions we ask that may be tricky, or awkward. For example, you might have persistent ankle pain and we might be asking you about dieting, and what weight loss strategies you may have done. While some patients may see an obvious link between obesity and ankle pain, others may get offended. Just know that we are doing our best to help you, we want you to get better. Why? Because we care about all of our patients.

If you are a patient, in pain suffering with acute or chronic pain, please call us to discuss your case further. Surrey Physio have an amazing team of therapists to help you recover from pain, but also to achieve top performance. Call us on 0208 685 6930 or click the link at the top to book online.)