This review article found that seeing a physical therapist first (versus physician first) for musculoskeletal issues resulted in lower costs and improved outcomes.
Many people don't realize that they have direct access to physical therapy. Direct access means that you do not need a physician referral or prescription to see a PT. Direct access has been available for many years, and studies such as this one are showing that there are many benefits of it.
Musculoskeletal disorders (think muscle strains, rolled ankles, tendinitis, even headaches and incontinence) rarely require medication or imaging, which is often what a physician will prescribe. Instead, these disorders respond to activity modifications, strengthening, improved motor control, mobility, etc which is exactly what physical therapists specialize in.
Going to a PT first when you develop an injury or pain can save you time, money, and improve your outcomes. #GetPT1st