Physical Therapy FAQ in Vancouver WA and Portland OR

Frequently Asked Questions

Serving Portland OR | Vancouver WA

1. How much will physical therapy cost?

The cost of therapy depends on the nature of your injury, the results of our initial evaluation, and what you want to accomplish. We can give you an estimate of the cost and length of treatment after you have come in for your initial evaluation.

2. Will my physical therapy be covered by insurance?

Yes, probably. A large number of insurance plans cover physical therapy treatment. Check with your insurance plan administrator or call our clinic to find out if physical therapy is covered by your insurance.

3. How long will it take for me to get better?

How quickly you recover is determined by many factors unique to you. These factors include the extent of damaged tissue, how long you have had the injury, your nutritional habits, your emotional state, the state of your immune and endocrine systems, your genetic predisposition and other factors. We will review these factors with you when you come in for your evaluation. If appropriate, we can refer you to a physician or other practitioner who can address specific needs. Your body’s response to exercises and manual techniques will also help us to estimate how long it could take for you to regain function.

4. How many times will I need to come in?

After your evaluation, you and your therapist will determine the number of times you will need to be seen. The extent and seriousness of your injury will be a primary consideration for determining the amount of treatment you will need. On average, we see clients 1-2 times a week for 4-8 weeks.

5. Why should I receive physical therapy for my injury?

Physical therapy assists your body to make a complete recovery and restore you to full function. This is accomplished by designing a very specific treatment program for the injured area. A physical injury damages your muscles, nerves, ligaments, cartilage, tendons, and blood vessels. It is a big challenge for your body to restore everything back to normal. In fact, the repair process may not be fully completed. Even if the pain is gone, you may develop scar tissue, adhesions, or a weak tissue structure that is susceptible to re-injury.

You should get physical therapy for an injury for the same reason that you would see an orthopedist for a broken leg. Your broken leg could heal completely by itself without professional assistance – but not as quickly – and the healed leg may end up deformed and not very functional. Physical therapy shortens your healing process and helps you recover more completely. You shouldn’t postpone getting physical therapy for the same reason you wouldn’t postpone seeing a doctor for your broken leg. Putting off therapy leads to continued inflammation and pain, unnecessary scar tissue, and increased risk of re-injury.

6. How long will I need to do specific exercises?

The length of any specific exercise program depends on the stage of your injury and the overall health of your connective tissue. Generally, you will have reduced pain within 1-2 weeks on an exercise program. However, it is important to remember that connective tissue cellular repair takes up to one year. Most of our clients progress to an independent home exercise program that they continue to do 1-2 times per week after finishing therapy in the clinic. Remember that being out of pain is only the first step to your complete recovery.

7. Can I continue my regular exercises?

A skilled and experienced physical therapist will carefully evaluate the extent and nature of your injury, as well as your ability and desire to exercise. We will probably prescribe a specific rehabilitation exercise program for you until you have recovered from your injury. However, if we think continuing your regular exercise program would be beneficial, we will encourage you to continue.

8. Is “no pain, no gain” true for physical therapy?

“No pain, no gain” is a misconception. Physical therapy for injuries is not the same as physical training for competitive sports. Pain causes muscle contraction and guarding, inflammation, and restricted range of motion. This leads to the continuation of the pain cycle and inappropriate movement patterns that can lead to further injury. In addition, chronic inflammation weakens connective tissue and leads to scar tissue formation. This is why our physical therapy programs are designed to avoid pain.

9. How much activity is “too much”?

After an injury, your activity level may initially need to be modified. This is to allow optimal healing and prevention of re-injury. You will know you are doing too much if you experience pain. The pain response may occur immediately or could be delayed for as long as 24-48 hours. A good rule of thumb is to increase your activity level gradually under the supervision of your therapist. Ultimately, the goal of your physical therapy is to allow you to return to your prior activities without pain.

10. Can I begin physical therapy if I’m seeing a chiropractor or other provider?

Yes, physical therapy is effective in conjunction with treatment provided by other providers. We believe in communicating and working closely with your other providers to optimize your recovery.

11. Who can refer to a physical therapist?

Medical doctors, chiropractors, naturopathic physicians, nurse practitioners, acupuncturists and osteopathic doctors can refer you for physical therapy. Due to our special training you can also refer yourself without a doctor’s prescription.

12. What should I wear to my appointment?

Wear loose, comfortable clothing. If you have a low back or knee injury, bring a pair of shorts or sweatpants.

13. Do you use ultrasound or hot packs?

Ultrasound and hot packs are thermal agents that increase inflammation. While they may temporarily decrease pain they can ultimately weaken connective tissue, which increases risk of re-injury. We use microcurrent and S.T.E.P. exercises to increase circulation and decrease pain.[/wpspoiler]

14. Does New Heights Physical Therapy Plus have a Privacy Policy?

Click here to view the New Heights Physical Therapy Plus Privacy Policy. (Note: You will need Adobe Acrobat to read/print this document.)

15. Is there parking by the clinic?

At our East Portland location, street parking is available directly outside our clinic and in the surrounding neighborhood. It is not metered. At our Vancouver location, there is also street parking available directly outside our clinic and in the surrounding area. However, some parking is metered.

16. Is there a list of definitions for other abbreviations?

Yes. Here is a list of common abbreviations and their definitions:

  • AAOMT: American Association of Manual Physical Therapy
  • APTA: American Physical Therapy Association
  • COMT: Certification in Orthopedic Manual Therapy
  • DPT: Doctor of Physical Therapy
  • FAAOMT: Fellow of the American Association of Manual Therapy
  • FCAMT: Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Therapy
  • LMT: Licensed Massage Therapist
  • MOMT: Master’s Degree Orthopedic Manual Therapy
  • MPT: Master of Physical Therapy
  • MSPT: Master of Science in Physical Therapy
  • NAIOMT: North American Institute of Orthopedic Manual Therapy
  • OCS: Orthopedic Clinical Specialist
  • OGI: Ola Grimsby Institute
  • PT: Physical Therapist
  • PTA: Physical Therapy Assistant
  • STEP: Scientific Therapeutic Exercise Progressions

17. How do I get to the clinic?

New Heights Physical Therapy Plus is proud to offer three locations for your physical therapy needs.

East Portland

5736 NE Glisan St.

New Heights Physical Therapy Plus – East Portland is located on the south side of NE Glisan between NE 57th and NE 58th. For a map and directions, click here. For alternative Transportation, click here. Please note that by clicking on these links, you will leave the New Heights website and enter a privately owned website.


1700 Broadway St., Suite 101

New Heights Physical Therapy Plus Vancouver is located on the west side of Broadway St. between 17th and 18th. For a map and directions, click here. For alternative Transportation, click here. Please note that by clicking on these links, you will leave the New Heights website and enter a privately owned website.

21. How do I schedule an appointment?

For our East Portland location call 503.236.3108 and for Vancouver call 360.737.3346 to schedule a one-hour evaluation.

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Physical Therapy FAQs in Portland OR and Vancouver WA

Seeing Patients in the following Portland and Vancouver areas:

SE Portland | NE Portland | Gresham | Happy Valley | Clackamas | Milwaukie | Mt Tabor | Belmont | Lloyd Center | Laurelhurst | Hollywood District | Downtown Portland | Beaverton | Tigard | Hillsboro | Cedar Mill | Cornell | Sylvan | Cedar Hills Downtown Vancouver | Fruit Valley | Hazel Dell | Felida | Cascade Park | Camas Washington