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3 benefits of home health physical therapy

3 Benefits of Home Health Physical Therapy

by LeeAnn Hulteen, PT, Cert. MDT8 Comments

Physical therapy can help improve mobility, function and motion as well as effectively manage pain after an illness, injury or surgery. Sometimes functional mobility is so limited that the ability to safely leave the home is actually impeded. When this is an issue, receiving physical therapy in the home may be the best option.

1. Fall Prevention

One of the benefits of receiving therapy in the home is in the area of fall prevention and safety. Falls are the leading cause of death by injury in persons over the age of 65.1 According to the National Institute of Health, more than 9,500 deaths occur each year in persons over the age of 75 from fall related complications. Because most people prefer to go home after a hospital stay or surgery, receiving therapy in the home can help prevent falls by improving the home environment, identifying fall risk factors and addressing muscle weakness, gait abnormalities and balance impairments.

2. Treatment Customized for the Home

All physical therapists focus on function but there is no better place to truly evaluate a patient’s functional mobility than in the home. Just like patients, no two homes are exactly alike. Some homes have small awkward rooms, while others have winding staircases or unusual furniture. Therapists help improve access in the home, working on ways for patients to safely get from room to room and improving their ability to maximize function in each room. For example, therapists may provide focus exercises and techniques for getting out of bed, reaching into cabinets, and stepping in and out of the shower. Therapists will also work with patients on strengthening as well as improving range of motion and balance in specific areas of the home. Therapists will also modify home exercise programs based on the area of the house where patients perform their exercises.

3. Familiar Surroundings

Being in your own home for physical therapy also comes with benefits. Homebound patients may find it comforting to receive treatment in a familiar place. This can be also be helpful if the patient is new to therapy, allowing them to focus on their care with few distractions. In addition, home health services, when appropriate, make therapy services more accessible and convenient, not just for the patient, but also for caregivers or family who may be assisting them.

Getting Back to Doing the Things You Love

Once home rehab goals have been achieved, the therapist will be able to assist in transitioning the patient to the outpatient setting. This includes making sure patients can walk community distances and safely access their vehicle in order to attend outpatient therapy. The therapist will also coordinate care with the outpatient therapist and physician to ensure that there is no lapse in care for an optimum outcome.

Optimizing functional ability and helping patients return to the activities that they enjoy are always the focus of physical therapy in all settings. For patients that are experiencing limited functional mobility that may be impeding access to outpatient services, receiving therapy in the home may be the most appropriate setting for an optimal rehab outcome. For more information, contact a Home Health Therapy clinician by emailing or calling 630-575-6218.

The Athletico blog is an educational resource written by Athletico employees. Athletico bloggers are licensed professionals who abide by the code of ethics outlined by their respective professional associations. The content published in blog posts represents the opinion of the individual author based on their expertise and experience. The content provided in this blog is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied on for making personal health decisions.

1. “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 17 May 2018,

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  1. Colin Crawford

    Great Blog! I just had an episode of Home Health including PT and nursing following outpatient hip replacement surgery. It was a great experience overall, and helped me get back on my feet, out the door, and back to work. I credit my Home Health PT and nurse with my initial progress and mobility.

  2. Annie Doherty

    Thank you for this information! Very important message to receive, especially for those of us with elderly parents. Great blog post!

  3. Tim Yaotome

    I never knew that getting a physical therapy treatment at home can help a homeowner get tips on how to make each room more accessible to the patient. My son injured his foot after playing tennis yesterday. To speed up his recovery, I will find a center with a capable at-home physical therapist.

  4. Taylor Bishop

    Thanks for explaining why physical therapy can be good. It’s nice to know people can do it in their home in a familiar environment. I’m interested to learn if it’s possible for a therapist to be able to come and check up on a patient’s work or if they can help guide them and make any adjustments to their treatment plan.

  5. Ellie Davis

    My husband is really needing physical therapy. Thank you for pointing out that physical therapy can help protect you against falls. I’ll have to look into finding the best physical therapist in our area.

  6. Elisabeth Southgate

    I appreciate you helping me learn more about the benefits of in home physical therapy. I like how yo mentioned that it can help with preventing falls. My grandpa has fallen a couple of time in the last couple of months. Maybe we should look into getting him some physical therapy.

  7. Jacob Brown

    I like how you point out that physical therapy is useful for preventing falls in elderly people. My grandmother is at an age where a fall in the home could seriously injure her, and I want to recommend physical therapy for her to prevent that from happening. Physical therapy is something everyone should consider for their elderly family members.

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