The relationship between longevity of symptoms and healing time is of reciprocal proportion. The longer a person has symptoms, the longer it takes to relieve those symptoms. In my experience, this holds true most of the time. I’m not solely talking about musculoskeletal pain either. I am talking about all pathologies.
I was diagnosed with hypertension a few years ago. I was extremely fit and very conscious of diet at the time. That has changed slightly as I am a new father and attending school while working. Nonetheless, my doctor decided it was related to genetics, as most of my family is hypertensive. The point I want to make with this is that I could have continued with slightly elevated blood pressure for a while because I had no contributing factors other than genetics. Instead, with the guidance of my doctor, we decided to employ a very low dose chemical intervention. This decision was made because hypertension is a precursor to cardiovascular disease; even with slightly elevated blood pressure, especially if it is high for a very long time. I think I was 29 at the time and planned on living a long time as we all do. Because I sought early intervention, I have significantly reduced my risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Now I also must make sure I am maintaining a healthy lifestyle in order to keep my blood pressure stable.
Seeking Physical Therapy intervention in a timely manner can also significantly reduce the time it takes to heal. In my experience, the patients I see within a week or so of developing symptoms, experience symptomatic relief in a much quicker amount of time than those who wait. If someone decides to wait a few months or more, the body begins to develop scar tissue and starts to compensate for the anatomic changes that have occurred due to injury. Essentially, the problem compounds itself and it takes longer to recover from what was done in the first place.
No matter what ailment you are dealing with, you will most likely reduce your recovery time by seeking early intervention. It is acceptable to wait a few days or a week because the last time you had pain; it went away on its own. If your pain is lasting more than a week, seek help. My only other thought to leave you with is an area I am very passionate about: if you are not seeking early treatment due to financial reasons, which is all too common, please call your insurance company and tell them your story!
The Center for Physical Rehabilitation offers 15 Minute Complementary Consultations, if you are having persistent pain, come in and see us for a free assessment! We have 5 convenient locations in the Grand Rapids Area, visit here for more information!