April is Occupational Therapy Month

4/3/2018

April is Occupational Therapy Month.

Occupational therapy (OT) is useful for many injuries and conditions. It may be that a patient is recovering from a car accident, surgery, or stroke. In other cases, conditions like arthritis or other diseases may be keeping a patient from performing their everyday activities normally. Seemingly simple tasks like getting dressed, eating, and brushing your teeth can become difficult when recovering from a health condition. That’s where OT comes in.

OT is slightly different from traditional physical therapy. Occupational therapists help people of all ages participate in the things they want and need to do. OT helps people function in all of their environments, such as home, work, school, and community.

Common OT interventions include:

  • Helping children with disabilities to participate fully in school and develop social skills
  • Helping people recovering from an injury regain function through retraining and/or adaptations
  • Providing supports for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes

OT at Hunt Regional

Hunt Regional’s outpatient OT program in Greenville helps patients regain daily living as well as work skills. Our therapists help patients gain their independence again through:
  • Eating
  • Grooming
  • Dressing
  • Fine motor skills

Where do you start?

Our occupational therapists do this by first performing an evaluation and then developing an OT program tailored to address each patient’s condition and rehabilitation goals.

Depending on a patient’s rehab needs, the therapy team may recommend one, or more than one, therapy method.

These may include:
  • Hand therapy for tendon injuries and fractures
    • Static and dynamic splinting
    • Scar management
    • Improvement of fine motor coordination
  • Daily activity retraining after stroke or injury
  • Orthotic training
  • Arthritis management
  • Energy conservation training
  • Wheelchair evaluation
  • Adaptive equipment training
  • Neurological rehabilitation

What kind of training do therapists receive?

Entry-level OT practice requires a master’s degree for occupational therapists and an associate’s degree for occupational therapy assistants (who must be supervised by an occupational therapist).

Becoming a certified therapist also requires licensing. Before earning a master’s, therapists have already earned a bachelor’s degree, likely in a related field. Their coursework would have included biology and physiology classes.

Occupational therapists study subjects like:
  • Functional anatomy
  • Neurobiology
  • Kinesiology
  • Foundations of occupational therapy
  • Theoretical concepts and practice areas
  • Occupation through the life span
  • Therapeutic communication skills

Learn More

Our therapy services team is located on the second floor of Hunt Regional Medical Center.

In additional to our outpatient OT services, we also offer physical therapy, speech-language therapy, inpatient rehabilitation services, and many other therapies.

Visit our website to learn more.

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