Physical Therapy is the name of a medical profession concerned with treating bodily deformities and conditions through applied exercises and methods. Usually, it involves treating pain in the skeletal and muscular systems by employing manual therapy and other mechanical methods. Manual therapy used includes applying pressure to the bones and joints to correct them. Therapists may use techniques such as massage, electrical stimulation, manual traction, and ultrasound. Physical therapists also help patients achieve muscle balance and functional movement.
A physical therapist specialist requires a high school diploma or its equivalent, and some training after having attended a vocational-technical school for 2 years. Most physical therapy specialists begin their careers as orthopedic assistants, but many choose to pursue a bachelor’s degree as well. The Physical Therapy Specialists Certificate Program is a good choice for those who are looking to become full-fledged physical therapy specialists. After acquiring a PT certificate, physical therapy specialists can take the licensure exam to become certified.
Today, there is a variety of Physical Therapy Specialists programs that vary from state to state. The requirements for licensure vary from state to state. Physical therapy specialists are required to have a minimum of eight years of experience in providing care to the injured and ill. Some states allow physical therapy specialists to accept on-the-job training instead of having to complete a four-year degree program. To qualify for licensing in any state, physical therapists must meet general education and practice requirements, as well as meet state-specific licensing requirements.
A few states, such as Illinois and New York, require their physical therapy practitioners to receive a Master’s degree, while most states do not. Physical therapists who wish to become advanced practice physical therapists must complete a four-year bachelor’s degree, or an equivalent to four years of a college degree in a field that allows one to become a licensed physical therapist. Some states require physical therapists to obtain their license based on their schooling alone, without any additional licensing requirements. However, all states require physical therapists to pass a licensing exam after earning an advanced practice certificate or license.
There are many specialties in the field of physical therapy. In addition to OTR (physical therapy rehabilitation), there are CNTR (cardiovascular, neurological, pulmonary rehabilitation, neurological surgery, orthopedic, palliative care, pain management, sports medicine, and traumatology) therapy, and psychoneuroimmunoanalysis. Orthopedic physical therapy, pediatrics, geriatric, neonatology, and vascular therapy are also types of physical therapy. A physical therapist may specialize in one or more areas of health. For example, a physical therapist may specialize in orthopedics, geriatrics, sports medicine, or pediatric. Some physical therapy specialists work in hospitals or rehabilitation centers.
In order to become a physical therapy specialist, you must be a graduate of an accredited school with a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. After graduation, you must pass a certified continuing education (CE) requirement in order to maintain your license. Each state may have different CE requirements, so it is best to contact your state’s board of education for specifics. Your license is also required to perform certain tasks such as examining patients and prescribing medications. Although most physical therapy specialists perform basic or minimally invasive procedures, some specialize in more complex procedures. Before undergoing surgery or receiving invasive treatments, it is best to seek the advice of a physical therapy specialist to determine the best course of treatment.