Many people confuse occupational therapy and physical therapy as they often overlap. However, there are distinct differences between the two services. To find out where they diverge and overlap, here’s a comparison.
An occupational therapist focuses on helping patients restore their functional abilities. Occupational therapy is a specialty in which therapists help patients regain the ability to carry out and complete everyday tasks such as bathing, cooking, cleaning, as well as their work responsibilities. The goal is to restore independence and day to day functionality.
Unlike physical therapists who apply manual therapies and teach exercises, occupational therapists help you regain independence following your illness or injury or despite your condition. An occupational therapist may provide assistive tools that are customized according to your specific needs. After seeing an occupational therapist, you should see an improvement in function and have gained a certain level of independence needed in everyday life. If you are seeing an occupational therapist due to an injury, an occupational therapist will work with your doctor to ensure you heal and improve along the way.
An occupational therapist will start out by assessing your home and work environments and give recommendations and modifications on how to carry out tasks successfully. Patients who undergo occupational therapy have greater independence and life satisfaction than those who do not. Occupational therapists are a great help since a key component of their service is making home and workplace visits, so they can help you in real-time with the specific things you are struggling with.
Physical therapists help patients recover from health conditions, injuries, and surgery. Physical therapists teach exercises and apply manual therapies that can aid in healing and performance. Unlike occupational therapists, physical therapists work on mobility, strengthening, flexibility, and, ultimately, healing. Physical therapists focus on improving functionality and maximizing how well you can move. Their focus does not revolve around everyday tasks only. The goals of physical therapy are pain relief, restoration of mobility, better range of motion, more endurance, and improved performance.
Physical therapy is also used to reduce the need for surgery in many cases. By strengthening the body and promoting healing, many patients find themselves delaying the need for surgery. If surgery is necessary, physical therapy is a great post-procedure option.
Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy Similarities
Occupational and physical therapy overlap in some cases. This includes educating patients on the healing process and injury prevention, using strengthening tactics to help improve functionality, making day to day movements easier, and ultimately, improving the patient’s quality of life. One therapy is not necessarily better than the other. If you are wondering which one is better for you, speak with a medical professional for guidance.
Occupational and Physical Therapy Services in Wooster, Ohio
Wooster Community Hospital provides patients with all types of medical care needs, including occupational and physical therapy.
If you are in need of these services, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Our experts can discuss which option is better for your needs and get you started right away.
To learn more or to make an appointment with Wooster Community Hospital, please call us at (330) 263-8144. We look forward to serving you!