Question 1

Do I need a prescription or physician's referral for physical therapy?

A prescription or referral for physical therapy is not required; you can call us to make an appointment right now. Having quick or immediate access to Physical Therapy can often be the difference between your condition being acute or temporary and chronic. North Carolina permits "Direct Access" for physical therapy for an evaluation. This means that you do not need to wait weeks to see your physician or orthopedic specialist to begin treatment in physical therapy. We encourage you to call us immediately if you experience an injury or have pain. Your therapist will work with your physician or other health care provider in the coordination of your treatment so you can concentrate on healing.

Question 2

Do you accept my insurance?

Change The Game Performance Therapy is a fee-for-service clinic. This allows patient care to be determined by your condition and your personal needs, not your insurance plan. We accept cash, checks, HSA, FSA and all major credit cards. All payment is due at the time of services rendered. If you have a PPO, a superbill will be given for each PT session upon request with appropriate billing codes if you wish to bill your insurance company directly. You pay for your treatment the same day we see you in our office and your payment may be reimbursed by your insurance provider. Ask your insurance company to send reimbursement directly to you. Also, check with your insurance company to determine if they require a referral for reimbursement purposes.  Please refer to the "How to Determine Your Insurance Benefits Worksheet" under patient forms to guide you through this process.

Question 3

What can I expect from my initial evaluation and treatment session?

For a physical therapy evaluation, we will email you our intake form prior to your first scheduled visit. If you are unable to fill out the forms at home, please arrive 15 min early to your first visit. Your first appointment will be approximately 75 minutes and consist of a review of your past and present medical history, a movement assessment, hands-on treatment, and education in corrective exercises. Athletic clothing is most appropriate for evaluation and any additional treatment sessions.

Question 4

What is dry needling?

Dry Needling is based on the theory that when trigger points develop in muscles, they lead to neuromuscular dysfunction, resulting in pain, decreased function and increased stress on surrounding structures.

A trigger point is a taut band of skeletal muscle located within a larger muscle group. Trigger points can be tender to the touch, and touching a trigger point may cause pain to other parts of the body.

Dry needling involves a thin filiform needle that penetrates the skin and stimulates underlying myofascial trigger points and muscular and connective tissues. The needle allows a physical therapist to target tissues that are not manually palpable.

Dry Needling can be a powerful adjunctive, though it is important to remember that Dry Needling is only one part of the treatment process. We also address biomechanical muscle imbalances, postural dysfunctions, muscular flexibility limitation, stability deficits, joint mobility. Physical therapy treatment may include: joint mobilization, an individualized corrective exercise plan, and advanced hands-on therapy techniques. This will restore a patient’s optimal physical function. A multidimensional treatment approach is paramount for a successful recovery. Singular treatment approaches often only offer temporary relief or fail altogether.

Question 5

Is dry needling the same as acupuncture?

Acupuncture involves needles being inserted at certain acupuncture points, mostly found along meridian lines. These lines represent organs of the body and have their origins in ancient Chinese medical history. The underlying treatment philosophy is based on the concept of balance and maintaining free flow of electricity within the body.

Needles are inserted, and are generally retained for 15 to 30 minutes. Acupuncture is subtle, gentle and is usually used more for internal treatments – complaints like digestive issues, stress, insomnia, sub-fertility, or in cases of chronic or ongoing pain. The needles sometimes elicit a slight dull or achy sensation on insertion, which quickly goes away and the treatment is generally relaxing.

Trigger Point Dry Needling is based on the theory that when trigger points develop in muscles, they lead to neuromuscular dysfunction, resulting in pain, decreased function and increased stress on surrounding structures.

Acupuncture style needles are used to elicit a twitch response to release the trigger point and restore normal function to the muscle. Needles are not retained. This is a more physical modality and can produce quite a strong sensation, usually resulting in a twitch and/or crampy sensation.