Occupational Therapy vs Physical Therapy
The key differences between occupational and physical therapy
Physical therapy (PT) and occupational therapy (OT) are both intended to help patients rehabilitate from an illness, injury or surgery. Many people use the terms interchangeably because both therapies are often prescribed at the same time. But what are the differences between occupational therapy vs physical therapy?
Although PT and OT share many similarities, the biggest difference between them is that PT focuses on a person’s ability to move their body better, while OT helps people better perform activities of daily living. Here’s a rundown of what you can expect from occupational and physical therapy.
The main focus of occupational therapy is to improve a person’s ability to perform activities of daily living, from brushing teeth to putting on socks. Occupational therapists help people regain independence after an injury or illness by teaching them how to relearn skills or adapt activities to their physical limitations. They also help people with developmental or cognitive disabilities better engage in daily life.
Occupational therapy takes into consideration the physical, emotional and environmental factors that affect a person’s performance and abilities. Therapists may help a person adapt their physical abilities and motor skills to perform a specific task or may change how an activity is done. Occupational therapists may also help improve skills through the use of positive coping strategies.
The main focus of physical therapy is treating a specific physical impairment. Physical therapists focus on restoring a person’s physical abilities, such as moving better, reducing pain and improving gross motor skills. PT not only helps rehabilitate a person after injury but improves mobility, so a person is less likely to need repeat surgery or pain management. It also helps prevent future injury.
Physical therapy may include various exercises and stretches performed under the guidance of a physical therapist. It may also include therapeutic modalities designed to help reduce swelling, improve blood flow, increase flexibility, or manage pain. In addition to the exercises performed at a PT session, you may also be given exercises to do at home or on your own.
OT and PT can be received in a variety of settings that work best for the patient and their families. These locations might include:
This is an outpatient clinic that a patient must travel to in order to receive therapy services. Outpatient therapy by Knute Nelson is designed to help individuals return to a functional lifestyle through occupational, physical, and speech therapies.
Short-term rehab involves a temporary stay at a healthcare facility to regain independence with the goal of returning home. Knute Nelson offers short-term rehab at our Care Center campus. Our state-of-the-art tools and equipment alongside our trained and professional staff help individuals regain strength and mobility to achieve their goals and return home as quickly as possible.
Home Health Care
After an injury, illness, accident, or surgery many individuals would prefer to recover from the comfort of home. That is where home health care comes in. Knute Nelson Home Health Care provides physical, occupational, and speech therapy services along with skilled nursing, personal care and companionship, smart home technology, and more to help individuals recover and rehabilitate from the comfort of their own homes.
Occupational and physical therapy from Knute Nelson
Knute Nelson is available to help individuals recover and rehabilitate in the place they choose. If you or a loved one needs help recovering from an injury, illness, surgery, or accident, please reach out to our team. Contact us today at (320)421-0242 or fill out an online form. We look forward to serving you and helping you achieve your goals.
Published on: August 15, 2023 | By: Kaylee Yamry | Medical Review: Andrew Overman, DPT, MS, COMT, CSCS
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Date Last Reviewed: February 10, 2022
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Andrew Overman, DPT, MS, COMT, CSCS