Types of Treatment

Types of Physical Therapy Treatment Raleigh-Durham, Fayetteville & Surrounding North Carolina Cities

Cutting-edge treatments for long-lasting results.

We know that the only way you can truly achieve lasting relief from your pain or limitation is to find the right therapy for your unique circumstances. At BreakThrough, we take the time to understand your story so that we can provide the best outcomes every single time.

Our team of dedicated physical therapists will use the latest research, technology, and modalities to get to the cause of whatever is holding you back. And then help you move past it, for good.

Here’s how we help:

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain, or persistent pain, is pain that lasts for weeks, months, or even years. For some, chronic pain is the result of an injury, like a sprained back, or an ongoing problem such as arthritis. For others, chronic pain occurs in the absence of a past injury.

A 2011 Global Industry Analysts, Inc. report estimates that over 1.5 billion people worldwide suffer from chronic pain, with the incidence rate increasing with age.

Common chronic pain complaints include:

  • Headache
  • Low back pain
  • Arthritis pain
  • Neurogenic pain (pain resulting from damage to the nerves)

At BreakThrough Physical Therapy, we are dedicated to overcoming these common painful conditions so our patients can get back to the life they love. We focus on two key elements in treating pain: education and movement. The combination of the latest research on pain and personalized treatments have shown significant results in helping people with chronic pain. 

Virtual Reality

BreakThrough believes in using cutting-edge technology to help you overcome your pain or limitations. The newest weapon in the fight against opioid addiction is virtual reality (VR) technology that can help ease patients’ chronic pain and provide alternatives to using pills.

BreakThrough Physical Therapy is piloting the use of a groundbreaking new VR platform, developed by BehaVR, which is drastically improving patient’s results and experience with persistent pain.

Not only does using a virtual reality headset as part of an integrated PT therapy session provide a visual and engaging experience for the patient, but the unique content also helps patients learn new tactics in reducing chronic pain and increase what you can do physically.

Blood Flow Restriction Therapy

Blood Flow Restriction Therapy (BFRT) is utilized by sports medicine experts, top athletes, and the U.S. military as an effective tool in the rehabilitation and strengthening of patients, producing faster and dramatically positive outcomes. 

Whether the patient is recovering from a sports injury or suffering from arthritic pain, BFRT can help build strength and get back to the activities they love. BFRT has also been shown to be safe and effective in elderly populations in reducing muscle loss and improving cardiovascular health.

Positive effects of BFRT include: 

  • Increasing muscle size, strength, and quality of the muscle action 
  • Increasing the ability of the muscle to use oxygen  
  • Decreasing scar tissue and pain
  • Increasing the ability of tendons, cartilage, and bone to heal
  • Reducing post-surgical loss of strength and muscle mass. 
  • Increasing the ability of your body to fight clotting 

Dry Needling

Trigger Point Dry Needling (TDN) is a physical therapy treatment technique that utilizes filament needles to make changes in trigger points. Trigger points are “knots” in muscles that can contribute to pain and decreased muscle function. TDN is an effective tool in the hand of a physical therapist managing soft tissue injuries, disorders, and pain.

Trigger Point Dry Needling at BreakThrough can help: 

  • Resolve seemingly hopeless issues, particularly for those who are dealing with chronic or persistent pain
  • Allow you to perform daily tasks, attend work, and participate in activities you love, without pain
  • See initial responses immediately
  • Return to your optimal level of function very quickly


BreakThrough physical therapists are now LSVT BIG® certified clinicians. LSVT BIG® trains people with Parkinson’s disease to use their bodies more normally. It’s an intensive, amplitude-focused treatment that effectively trains your neuromuscular system, with exercises modified depending on the patient’s functional ability. 

Developed and scientifically researched over the past 25 years with funding from the National Institutes of Health, LSVT BIG® has demonstrated improvements in the ability to move in people with Parkinson’s disease including, but not limited to:

  • Faster walking with bigger steps
  • Improved balance
  • Increased ability to rotate their trunk 
  • Improvements in daily living activities such as bed mobility and dressing
  • Improved ability to do more detailed activities with your hands 

The LSVT treatment protocol consists of:

  • 16 physical therapy sessions
  • 4 consecutive days per week for 4 weeks
  • Individual one-hour sessions
  • Daily homework practice/carryover exercises


Orthopaedics is the medical specialty dedicated to preserving and restoring function in the musculoskeletal system, which includes bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and nerves.

At BTPT, many of our physical therapists are APTA board-certified Orthopaedic Certified Specialists. The advanced clinical knowledge and skill set that comes with a Board Certification allows physios to better treat the patients in their specialty and keeps them up-to-date with cutting edge research and technology. 

The OCS certification focuses on evidence-based practice, orthopedic injury examination, treatment, and medical interventions. Only 3.9% of therapists in the United States are Orthopaedic Clinical Specialists. We also specialize in manual physical therapy, which is an integral component of orthopaedic care.

Orthopaedic physical therapy is used to treat both non-surgical and post-surgical patients with the following conditions:

  • Arthritis
  • Muscle weakness and imbalance
  • Spinal and other joint issues 
  • Swelling from an Injury or post surgery  
  • Recent fractures
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Tendonitis and bursitis

Pelvic Pain

Physical therapy with BreakThrough can reduce or eliminate pain, prevent surgery, and eliminate the need for medication in patients with pelvic pain, incontinence, and pregnancy or postpartum issues. 

BTPT physical therapists are experts in treating muscles and joints and can treat the following issues associated with pelvic pain:

  • Painful intercourse
  • Testicular pain
  • Pain associated with tampon use or pelvic exams
  • Difficulty with normal activities such as, sitting, rising from a chair, standing, or walking
  • Difficulty with recreational activities
  • Chronic constipation or difficulties passing a bowel movement
  • Pain in the groin, buttock, low back, hip, sacroiliac, or abdomen

Pregnancy & postpartum issues

BTPT offers outpatient care for women that is designed to reduce uncomfortable symptoms related to pregnancy such as:

  • Headaches and migraines
  • Tingling in the arms or hands
  • Back and neck pain
  • Hip, groin, or leg pain and numbness
  • “Stretched out” abdominal muscles that cause belly fat
  • Painful intercourse
  • Post-delivery abdominal or vaginal pain
  • Painful menses as a result of C-section surgery
  • Diastasis recti (tearing of the connections between the abdominal muscles)


Treatment at BTPT can help you gain control over the following symptoms:

  • Urine leakage with coughing, laughing, lifting, or exercise
  • Urge incontinence (urine leaks due to bladder muscle spasm)
  • Mixed incontinence
  • Functional incontinence (urine leaks if you cannot get to the bathroom in time)
  • Fecal incontinence

How you benefit: 

BTPT provides a very soothing and private environment for all pelvic health patients. Initially, your physio will examine abdominal muscles, neck, back, hip, SI joints, and pubic symphysis to look for issues brought on by surgery, pregnancy, or deconditioning. Each patient will begin a unique treatment plan; some common interventions include:

  • Gentle exercise
  • Stretching and strengthening
  • Education on proper posture
  • Manipulation and manual therapy
  • Specific exercises to improve pelvic floor function


Headaches are among the most common reasons that people see their primary care physician and they account for 20% of outpatient visits to neurologists. People with chronic (or persistent) headaches report disabling symptoms that interfere with daily activities. Many seek numerous different treatment approaches, only to accept these headaches as a fact of life, and have become dependent on medications to relieve their symptoms.

The International Headache Society has classified hundreds of different types of headaches into two categories: primary headaches and secondary headaches.

Primary headaches include migraine, tension-type and cluster headaches. They are the most common type of headache and stem from a single cause.

Secondary headaches are classified according to their causes, including temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders and cervicogenic headaches, which are attributed to mechanical disorders of the neck. Both types of headaches are treated by various clinicians including osteopaths, dentists, chiropractors, massage therapists, and physios.

Sources of headaches are often a combination of factors, including:

  • Musculoskeletal
  • Psychological
  • Neurovascular
  • Nutritional
  • Chemical imbalances in the brain

Some headaches relate to or are indicative of a disease process; some are life-threatening and others benign. Because of this, a thorough medical evaluation is necessary with any onset of a new or ongoing headache.

A thorough physical therapy examination attempts to determine the type of headache and to define the neuromusculoskeletal factors contributing to it. Muscle tension, joint dysfunction of the neck and jaw, poor posture, and stress are factors that can be addressed and treated by a skilled physio trained in manual therapy.

TMJ Disorder

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) guides jaw movement, and problems with the TMJ are known as temporomandibular joint disorder or dysfunction (TMD). TMD is very common; in fact, more than 10 million people in the United States have it.

TMD can be caused by:

  • Bad posture habits: One of the reasons TMD is so common is because many of us spend a great deal of time sitting at a desk, where we often hold our head too far forward as we work. But there are many other kinds of bad posture. Sitting in the car for a long commute, working at a checkout station, cradling a telephone receiver against the same shoulder for long periods of time, always carrying your child on the same hip—all can place the head in an awkward position and cause jaw problems. The “forward head position” puts a strain on the muscles, disk, and ligaments of the TMJ. The jaw is forced to “rest” in an opened position, and the chewing muscles become overused.
  • Chronic jaw clenching at night (“bruxism”): Many people clench their jaws at night while they sleep, usually because of stress. This puts a strain on the TMJ because of the constant strain on the joint and surrounding muscles.
  • Problems with teeth alignment (“malocclusion”): If your teeth come together in an unusual way, greater stress is placed on your TMJ.
  • Surgery: Following surgery to the face and jaw, there may be a loss in mobility and function of the TMJ.

Common symptoms include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Jaw fatigue
  • Difficulty opening your mouth to eat or talk
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Headache
  • Popping sounds in your jaw
  • Neck pain
  • Locking jaw

How BreakThrough helps:

Your physio at BTPT can help restore the natural movement of your jaw and decrease your pain. If the physio determines that your jaw pain is not related to teeth alignment, the physio will select treatments that will work best for you. Treatments used by physios for TMD include:

  • Posture education: If your physio finds that you sit with your head in an increased forward position, this means that you are placing a greater strain on the muscles beneath your chin, causing the lower jaw to pull back and the mouth to be in an open position even when resting, and increasing stress on the TMJ. You also might be overworking the jaw muscles to force the jaw closed so your mouth isn’t open all the time. Your physio will teach you to be aware of your posture so that you can improve the resting position of your jaw, head, neck, breastbone, and shoulder blades when you’re sitting and walking.
  • Improve jaw movement: Physios use skilled hand movements called manual therapy to increase movement and relieve pain in tissues and joints. Your therapist also might use manual therapy to stretch the jaw to restore normal joint and muscle flexibility (how supple your muscles are) or break up scar tissues (“adhesions”) that sometimes develop when there is constant injury.

Your physio will teach you special “low-load” exercises—exercises that don’t exert a lot of pressure on your TMJ but that can strengthen the muscles of the jaw and restore a more natural, pain-free motion.

Maintaining good sitting posture is key to preventing TMJ problems. Your physio will show you how to maintain a good sitting posture to prevent future episodes of TMD.

Sports Physical Therapy

Sports medicine involves a comprehensive team of health care professionals trained in a variety of backgrounds including physicians, exercise physiologists, athletic trainers, biomechanists, nutritionists, and physios.

Sports Physical Therapy at BreakThrough Physical Therapy emphasizes the prevention, identification, assessment, minimization, and correction of pain and disability associated with athletic injuries.  The goal of treatment is to maximize participation and performance.

Any athlete, amateur to professional, can benefit tremendously from Sports Physical Therapy no matter their sport. Our Sports Medicine clients range from football and basketball players to golfers to performance artists and bow-hunters.

A BTPT physio may use a variety of the following interventions to prevent and treat sports-related injuries, including but not limited to:

  • Pre-participation screening
  • Cardiovascular, resistance, endurance, and neuromuscular re-education exercise programs
  • Taping and bracing
  • Sports specific ergonomic and training regimens
  • Manual physical therapy
  • Aquatic therapy
  • Orthopaedic physical therapy

In addition to prevention and recovery, the road to maximum performance includes a focus on improving speed, agility, explosiveness, balance, and coordination.

Motor Vehicle Accident

BreakThrough takes patients with motor vehicle accident insurance as their primary payer. We also take patients that have liens or Letters of Protection. We know that your post-accident patients want to work with providers who specialize in evidence-based treatment and who take motor vehicle accident insurance or letters of protection – and that’s us.

Benefits of BreakThrough’s Personal Injury Program include:

  • Easy access for patients using their auto insurance or the at-fault party’s insurance
  • Access to high-quality providers
  • Quick pre-authorization process
  • Centralized scheduling at our 20 conveniently-located clinics

Additional Services

Whether you’re a professional athlete, 
weekend warrior, weight loss candidate, 
young competitor or patient recovering from surgery, the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill® at BreakThrough can help you optimize your treatment and training.

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Aquatic therapy is an effective rehabilitation tool for patients recovering from a wide variety of surgeries and injuries that benefit from the buoyancy and warmth of the water.

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BreakThrough Physical Therapy is proud to specialize in the rehabilitation of dancers.

Knowing the demanding rehearsal schedules that these athletes have to keep, we make every effort to work with scheduling needs to ensure they receive excellent care without compromise to their rigorous routine.

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Our physios treat a variety of conditions daily that range from neck and back pain to carpal tunnel syndrome and Achilles tendinitis.

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Manual physical therapy is a hands-on technique that is used to decrease pain and improve range-of-motion and flexibility to stiff joints and muscles.

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Our Physios are highly trained in manual therapy skills, which can include targeted soft tissue mobilization.

For those seeking more generalized massage intervention, those services can be provided by our Licensed Massage & Bodywork Therapists (LMBTs) in select locations.

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Neck pain is a common complaint and can be attributed to a number of conditions.

Neck pain can also cause loss of motion that holds you back from living your life. The good news is that it is usually caused by joint and muscle problems, not a serious disease. A variety of physical therapy treatments can decrease neck pain.

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Leaps & Bounds will focus solely on the positive development of gross motor skills.

Increasing these skills can build your child’s confidence and enhance your child’s social experience. These training sessions are geared toward Elementary and Middle School children.

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The mission of BreakThrough Pediatric Therapy is that all children, regardless of ability or background, have unlimited opportunities to grow and develop into unique individuals.

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Whether you are an avid athlete recovering from an injury, a weekend warier trying to avoid strains and sprains, or someone looking to loose weight and increase energy levels, Pierce Adams, CSCS, BreakThrough’s Personal Trainer can help.

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Sports medicine involves a comprehensive team of health care professionals trained in a variety of backgrounds including physicians, exercise physiologists, athletic trainers, biomechanists, nutritionists, and physical therapists.

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Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM) treatment is an innovative technique proven to effectively treat injuries caused by surgery, repetition, or overuse.

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Research suggests that 4 out of every 5 people have lower back pain at some point in their lives.

In February 2010, the Archives of Internal Medicine reported that the direct costs of treatment for low back pain in the United States are over $50 billion a year. This is more than half the amount spent yearly on cancer treatment.

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Sports medicine involves a comprehensive team of health care professionals including physicians, exercise physiologists, athletic trainers, biomechanists, nutritionists, and physical therapists.

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Do Your Back and Legs hurt when you’re walking, require you to lean on your cart while shopping, keep you from dancing due to pain or lack of mobility?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, BreakThrough’s Stand Up 2 Stenosis program is for you!

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Vertigo is the sensation of spinning. Even when you’re staying still, you may feel as if you’re moving or the room is moving around you.

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Treatment by a Women’s Health physio at BreakThrough Physical Therapy can reduce pain, prevent surgery, and eliminate the need for medications.

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At BreakThrough Physical Therapy, our physios are workplace injury specialists. We deliver hands-on manual physical therapy to treat back, knee, ankle, and shoulder injuries due to falls, slips, lifting, and twisting.

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Our team is ready to get to the root cause of your issues and get you back to living a pain-free life.

Your path to long-term recovery starts by simply booking your appointment.