What is the Difference Between Physical & Occupational Therapy?

What is the Difference Between Physical & Occupational Therapy?

October 19, 2017

Physical therapy and occupational therapy are very similar and are often confused as one and the same due to the fact that they both involve educating patients on how to prevent injuries, heal from injuries and improve their ability to perform daily tasks. However, it's important that you understand the differences between the two since they are two different forms of therapies, even if they share a number of similarities.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy involves the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of movement dysfunctions. Physical therapists will be able to treat the source of the problem, such as any injured tissues or structures in the body, using a variety of techniques, such as manual therapy or acupuncture. They focus more on the actual impairment that the patient is experiencing from a biomechanical perspective, which they will address by attempting to increase their mobility, lessen their pain and align their bones.

The following are some of the issues you might be having that can benefit from physical therapy:

  • TMJ Dysfunction
  • Neurological conditions, such as Parkinson's Disease, stroke, and Multiple Sclerosis.
  • Pain caused by Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome
  • Arthritic conditions, such as rheumatoid     arthritis and osteoarthritis
  • Cervical and lumbar spine conditions
  • Injuries that have affected the function     of your shoulders, knees, hips, ankles, elbows or hands

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy differs from physical therapy in that an occupational therapist focuses more on the entire person. They will evaluate your physical problems and help you to improve your functional abilities. This means that they will often treat patients who are recovering from physical injuries as well as patients who have certain developmental or cognitive disabilities that are affecting their emotions, behavior or motor skills.

The goal of an occupational therapist is to help their patients achieve independence by helping them to improve their ability to perform day-to-day tasks, thereby improving their quality of life. The following are some of the indications that you or a loved one could benefit from occupational therapy:

  • Handwriting difficulties
  • Issues with motor skills
  • Problems with performing activities of daily living
  • Impaired functions, such as poor hand use, edema, burns and sensory impairments.
  • Developmental delays

Our Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy Services

Here at Advanced Motion Therapeutic, we offer physical therapy services as well as a variety of specialty therapy care services, which includes occupational therapy. For more information about our services, contact us at Advanced Motion Therapeutic today.