Do you have an injury or medical condition that is causing you pain and limiting your daily activities? Are you looking for relief for a condition that is holding you back? Would you like to learn more about how occupational therapy can help you eliminate your pain and improve performance? If so, occupational therapy can help you reclaim your life.
Occupational therapy is a form of treatment that is deeply rooted in science and supported by numerous medical journals. Our Chicago, IL occupational therapists work hard to help people recover from injuries and regain functional skills. Occupational therapy can benefit people of all ages, from helping children with disabilities participate in school and social arenas to helping seniors improve their physical and cognitive health.
At Advantage Physical Therapy Associates & Wellness, our occupational therapy plans include:
- An individual evaluation to determine patient goals.
- Customized intervention activities to improve daily tasks and activities for the patient.
- An evaluation of outcomes to determine if goals were met and to make changes to the plan, if needed.
If you believe occupational therapy could benefit you, contact Advantage Physical Therapy Associates & Wellness today to schedule your consultation!
What is occupational therapy?
While occupational therapy is similar to physical therapy, there are a few distinct differences. Physical therapy focuses on the patient’s ability to perform certain movements overall, while occupational therapy focuses on the patient’s ability to perform certain movements during daily activities.
For example, a physical therapist will work with a stroke patient to build back muscle strength, while an occupational therapist will work with a stroke patient to practice basic skills like walking, eating, bathing, and dressing.
Physical therapy and occupational therapy tend to overlap, as a patient may begin treatments with a physical therapist and then move on to working with an occupational therapist once their pain is relieved and they have regained enough strength/physical function.
What is hand therapy?
There are different specialties to occupational therapy, and hand therapy is one of them. Hand therapy focuses on treating orthopedic upper-extremity issues to optimize the functional use of the arm and hand. Hand therapy is used to treat several conditions surrounding the upper extremities, including but not limited to:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
In general, hand therapy focuses on the biomechanical issues of upper-extremity conditions. It’s a patient-centered approach that addresses the needs of the patient, such as being able to lift objects, open a jar, or button a shirt.
There are several interventions that a hand therapist can make, in order to help you comfortably perform daily functions. This may include any combination of therapeutic exercises, mirror therapy, orthosis design, pain management, manual therapy, taping, ergonomics, or compression therapy. There are several activities that a hand therapist may have you perform in order to strengthen your upper extremity after an injury, such as working with putty, using a gripper, or using dumbbells.
There are several benefits to hand therapy, including:
- Preventative, non-operative or conservative treatment
- Management of acute or chronic pain
- Desensitization following nerve injury or trauma
- Sensory re-education after nerve injury
- Design and implementation of home exercise programs to increase motion, dexterity, and/or strength
- Customized splint fabrication for prevention or correction of injury
- Training in the performance of daily life skills through adapted methods and equipment.
- Conditioning prior to returning to work
Contact Advantage Physical Therapy Associates & Wellness today:
Occupational therapy is more than just addressing an injury. At Advantage Physical Therapy Associates & Wellness, our Chicago, IL occupational therapists focus on the functional needs of each patient by implementing certain exercises and activities that promote physical and psychological well-being.
According to the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), in addition to dealing with an individual’s physical well-being, Occupational Therapy practitioners address psychological, social, and environmental factors that may hinder an individual’s functioning in different ways. For example, occupational therapy for a young patient may include using a special tool to make cupcakes at home. If an adaptation to a utensil needs to be fashioned, an occupational therapist will do it. This unique approach makes occupational therapy a vital part of health care for patients. People feel better emotionally when they can comfortably engage in their hobbies and everyday activities.
If you believe you or a loved one could benefit from occupational therapy, don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation today. Contact our Chicago, IL occupational therapy office to get started on the path toward living a more comfortable and functional life!