Occupational therapy is the only profession that helps people across the lifespan to do the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of daily activities (occupations). Occupational therapy practitioners enable people of all ages to live life to its fullest by helping them promote health, and prevent—or live better with—injury, illness, or disability. Common occupational therapy interventions include helping children with disabilities to participate fully in school and social situations, helping people recovering from injury to regain skills, and providing supports for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes. Occupational therapy services typically include:
• an individualized evaluation, during which the client/family and occupational therapist determine the person’s goals,
• customized intervention to improve the person’s ability to perform daily activities and reach the goals, and
• an outcomes evaluation to ensure that the goals are being met and/or make changes to the intervention plan.
Occupational therapy practitioners have a holistic perspective, in which the focus is on adapting the environment and/or task to fit the person, and the person is an integral part of the therapy team. It is an evidence-based practice deeply rooted in science. [Reference: aota.org]
A hand therapist is an occupational or physical therapist who, through advanced continuing education, clinical experience, and integration of knowledge in anatomy, physiology, and kinesiology, has become proficient in the treatment of pathological upper extremity conditions resulting from trauma, disease, congenital or acquired deformity. A hand therapist may achieve advanced certification as a certified hand therapist (CHT). To obtain the CHT credential, a therapist must practice for a minimum of three years, accumulating at least 4,000 hours of treatment for hand and upper extremity disorders. Certified hand therapists must also pass a rigorous certification exam to demonstrate their competency in the practice of hand therapy. [Reference: asht.org].
Learn more about Pam Grzadzielewski one of our Occupational therapists.
Hand therapy is the art and science of evaluating and treating injuries and conditions of the upper extremity (shoulder, arm, elbow, forearm, wrist, and hand). Hand therapy uses a number of therapeutic interventions to help return a person to their highest level of function. It evolved from the need for a specialist with the knowledge and experience required to manage the challenging recovery of complex hand and upper extremity injuries.