Physical therapists (PTs) are health care professionals who evaluate and manage health conditions for people of all ages. They may use the title "Dr" as some complete doctor programs. Typically individuals consult a PT for the management of medical problems or other health-related conditions that; cause pain, limit their ability to move, and limit the performance of functional activities. PTs also help prevent health conditions through prevention, restoration of function and through fitness and wellness programs that achieve healthy and active lifestyles. PTs evaluate individuals, diagnose conditions, and develop management plans using treatment techniques that promote the ability to move, reduce pain, restore function, and prevent disability. They provide care in hospitals, clinics, schools, sports facilities, and more.
Physical therapists are expected to continue professional development by participating in continuing education courses and workshops. In addition, many physical therapists pursue board certification in one of seven specialty areas (orthopaedic, pediatric, neurologic, sports, electrophysiologic, geriatric, and cardio-pulmonary). Board certified specialists must have demonstrated special expertise in their clinical area.