Annually, the month of October is utilized to recognize the great work that physical therapists are doing to help patients optimize movement and enrich their lives. Known as National Physical Therapy Month (NPTM), the American Physical Therapy Association℠ has announced that this year’s theme will again focus on the damaging Opioid epidemic in the United States.
Unfortunately, even as more awareness is being raised about the rising death toll from opioid abuse, Americans are still prescribed opioids for pain relief at an alarming rate. APTA wants to spread the positive message that physical therapy is a safe and effective alternative for those who are suffering from chronic pain. Through its #ChoosePT campaign, APTA wants pain sufferers to learn about the difference between masking pain through painkillers versus treating the pain through professional physical therapy.
Throughout the month of October, various events are being held online and in communities around the country. APTA has created an online Campaign Toolkit with resources that you can use to promote and hold your own #ChoosePT event. Also, on Saturday, October 14th, everyone is asked to participate in the 2017 PT Day of Service. Join the thousands of PT’s, PTA’s, and physical therapy students who will be volunteering in their communities.
One of the most important things you can do during NPTM is educate yourself about the growing opioid epidemic. Armed with information, you can have conversations with friends or family members who may be chronic pain sufferers and help steer them away from dangerous opioids. APTA has published several resources that you can use to gain the information you need for these important discussions, from position papers to handouts, all of the information is available to download.
How are you planning to participate in NPTM this year? Are you going to follow @MoveForwardPT on Twitter and Facebook? Use the comment section below to share your plans for NPTM or join the discussion on our Facebook page.