When does rehab fail?

14th February 2023

Transparency is a big part of my approach to rehab.

I personally feel it’s really important to be open about the rehabilitation process. It’s not easy. Not by a long shot but the results are consistently excellent… 

Firstly, let’s clarify the difference between rehabilitation and treatment approaches. 

Treatments are a massage, a manipulation (cracking), ultrasound, laser, or dry needling etc approach that is stand alone. Some people may have a series of stand alone treatments. However, unless there is an underlying plan to tackle the cause of the pain / injury, it’s unlikely that the problem will be resolved. Sure, the pain / injury might become dormant for a few days, weeks or even months, but the minute the tissues are stressed beyond their much lower tolerances, it’ll be back. 

Now just to be clear, there’s nothing wrong with a treatment. They can really help someone get through a flare up when they are unable to engage in rehab. 

I typically have two types of clients.

Those who successfully complete rehab and become sustainably pain free. And those who don’t.

More often than not, the ones that succeed are those who have had treatments over an extended period. They’ve started to put two and two together and realised that things just aren’t changing. 

A lot of my work is around expectation management. Explaining in a myriad of ways that it’s unrealistic to expect instant results (especially when it’s taken months if not years to get to this position). Instead slow transformation with diligent application of the rehab principles is the key to success.

For those clients who fail to launch?

They often struggle to engage with their rehab because I’ve not been able to manage their expectations. You notice there that I took responsibility for that? Obviously, personal accountability is really important on both sides. But if I can’t reach my clients in their stage of their journey, then they often fail to flourish and withdraw from the process. I definitely have a sense of sadness at this. Because if I had been able to reach them then their story would have a very different ending….

One of the things that I do to manage expectations up front is to spend time (20 minutes of free consultation!) listening to my client’s needs and explaining (in-depth) my approach. I’m really transparent. I want any prospective client to understand that this is not a quick fix. That they’ll be working hard for it. I find that this really improves the chances of their success. They aren’t being enticed in. And (in theory) there are no surprises for them. 

If you want a therapist who is open and honest about the approach. Who provides a clear plan with achievable, measurable goals. Then set up a free 20 min consult today!