I am out of pain should I be done with treatment?
Well maybe but why did I get sore in the first place. If I slipped, tripped or fell there is a simple beginning, middle and end to treatment.
But what if the problem gradually came on. Maybe it comes and goes. Finding the beginning, middle and end is a bit more complicated in that scenario.
Is the problem gone when the pain is gone?
Has the movement been normalized, strength and mobility back to optimal levels?
Are these factors more important than pain. I would contend that they are more important because movement patterns, strength imbalance and limited mobility are the reasons why most problems began in the first place. The pain was just the fire that brought our attention to the area.
So how can we objectively determine when we are needing treatment or done with treatment?
Movement is key answer to this question and thanks to tools like the Selective Functional Movement Assessment (SFMA) and the Functional Movement Screen (FMS), we can now objectively answer them with more confidence than ever before.
These tools, one for the health care provider to assess the patient with pain and help decide what needs to be treated (SFMA), and one to determine readiness for exercise and potential risk of injury (FMS), are now being used by pro football teams, military special forces and other groups to lessen the potential of losing folks to injury. We can and do the same thing with our patients.