What is physiotherapy?
Does insurance cover it?
Do I need a referral from my doctor?
How long does a treatment session take and how
many appointments do I need?
What happens at my appointments
What do I need to bring with me?
What is vestibular rehabilitation?
What is Acupuncture?
What is Trigger Point Dry Needling/ Intramuscular Stimulation/ Functional Dry Needling?
WHAT IS PHYSIOTHERAPY?
"Physiotherapy is the primary health care profession that promotes wellness, mobility, and independent function. Physiotherapists have advanced understanding of how the body moves, what keeps it from moving well, and how to restore mobility."
DOES INSURANCE COVER IT?
If you have extended health benefits, have been injured as a result of an automobile accident, or have a claim under WSBC (previously WCB), then you will likely have all of your treatment paid for. If you are using extended health benefits, check the details of your coverage in your Extended Health Manual, or speak with your Human Resources department.
MSP coverage for physiotherapy services (government-funded physiotherapy) is available to families which are on premium assistance.
DO I NEED A REFERRAL FROM MY DOCTOR?
No referral is necessary to participate in physiotherapy treatment. However, if you are on an ICBC claim, work related claim than you will need a referral from doctor. Extended health coverage patients are advised to check the details of their extended health benefits as some plans may require a physician's referral in order to get treatment costs reimbursed.
HOW LONG DOES A TREATMENT SESSION TAKE AND HOW MANY APPOINTMENTS DO I NEED?
New physiotherapy patients have about 1 hour session and follow up treatments are 40-minutes. All appointment times are one-on-one with your physiotherapist.
The number of sessions you'll need depends on your condition. The initial visit gives your therapist the information they need to assess your treatment course. Your therapist will discuss this with you after your initial assessment.
WHAT HAPPENS AT MY APPOINTMENTS?
At your initial visit, your physiotherapist will conduct an interview and a physical evaluation. This will be followed by your first treatment so you can immediately benefit from your experience at our facility.
Treatment itself can vary depending on the type of injury that you are presenting with. This may involve education on your injury and how to optimize recovery, manual therapy (hands on treatment), physical modalities (e.g. ultrasound treatment, laser treatment, mechanical traction, electrical muscle stimulation), and an exercise program.
WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING WITH ME?
We ask our patients to wear clothing appropriate to the type and area of injury. Shorts and a t-shirt or tank top is usually sufficient.
Please bring any medical documentation you feel may be helpful in your treatment planning to your appointments.
If your condition is related to a work injury or an auto accident, we require your case manager's name and contact information, your claim number, and extended health benefits information.
WHAT IS VESTIBULAR REHABILITATION? (treatment for disorders of dizziness)
Dizziness and vertigo are among the most common reasons why people see their doctors. Often medication is prescribed that may or may not help, MRIs or CT scans are negative, or patients are sent to specialists only to be told that nothing can be done.
Many of these problems come from dysfunction of the vestibular organ, which is a small structure in your inner ear that helps with balance, coordination, and positioning. When the vestibular organ is impaired, patients experience spinning, dizziness, nausea, imbalance, and light-headedness, among other symptoms.
Generally, most patients only require 1-3 treatments to correct vestibular disorders. Treatment sessions typically involve manual hands-on treatment, an exercise program, or a combination of both. Please don't try treatment on your own if you have not been properly diagnosed, as this may actually make your condition worse.
WHAT IS ACUPUNCTURE?
The improved balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body’s natural healing abilities, and in doing so promotes physical and emotional well-being. Acupuncture is a centuries-old Chinese method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to improve functioning. The Chinese explanation describes channels of energy which run in regular patterns throughout the body and over its surface to nourish the tissues. An obstruction in the movement of these energy channels is like a dam that backs up the rivers, acupuncture is a way of unblocking those dams. The modern scientific explanation is that needling the acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord, and brain which can change the experience of pain and increase the overall health of the body.
WHAT IS TRIGGER POINT DRY NEEDLING / INTRAMUSCULAR STIMULATION / FUNCTIONAL DRY NEEDLING?
A relieving treatment for muscular tightness and spasm which commonly follows injuries, degenerative processes, stress and overuse of the muscles. Muscular tightness and spasm will cause compression and irritation of the nerves exiting the spine. When the nerves are irritated, they cause a protective spasm of all the muscles to which they are connected. This may cause peripheral diagnoses such as carpel tunnel, tendonitis, osteoarthritis, decreased mobility and chronic pain. Small, thin needles are inserted into the muscle at the knots known as trigger points which are causing the pain referral. Because the needles are so thin, the patient often does not even feel the needle go in, but will quickly feel the relief of the muscle relaxing. The patient typically notices immediate increased flexibility of the muscle and a decrease in symptoms
College of Physical Therapists of BC
Canadian Physiotherapy Association
Physiotherapy Association of BC