As Park North Physical Therapy has grown into a second location, we’ve seen first-hand the daily struggles our uptown community faces as so many live with long-term pain or limited functionality. As a result, our team continues to grow to meet each of you where you live in your pain, recovery and training.
To that end, we’re excited to introduce Outpatient Occupational Therapy Services to better serve our patients who are seeing a steady decline in their abilities to perform everyday functions. This specialized area of rehabilitation focuses on patients who have suffered an injury, illness or chronic health condition that limits their functionality.
So, what are the specific benefits of occupational therapy, and why should you talk to your physical therapist about it? We share six ways occupational therapy can benefit your life.
6 Benefits of Outpatient Occupational Therapy Services
1. Improve Range of Motion
Serious health conditions like arthritis, strokes, MS or even Parkinson’s Disease can affect range of motion, but this can also occur with occupational injuries. For example, anything from a wrist strain or cramp caused by repetitive movements to a cheap, poor-posture chair at the office can become a source of chronic pain.
Occupational therapy helps patients in all of these cases improve their range of motion by identifying and exercising the target muscles of concern through active and passive motions that may occur throughout the day. Occupational therapists may also provide proper body positioning to reduce stress and other compensatory prevention techniques.
2. Enhance Visual Deficits
Much like any muscle or joint in the body, the eyes can suffer repetitive stress injuries or fall victim to eye disease or a stroke. Stress injuries on the job can include eye strain from excessive viewing of computer monitors and documents which can create blind spots, making everyday activities more dangerous.
Occupational therapists develop exercises that pertain to the eye and visual adaptive techniques, such as scanning and pre-reading strategies, to reduce the stress of intensive eye usage.
3. Adapt to Current Abilities
With outpatient occupational therapy, our goal is to improve patients’ abilities to perform daily activities independently. Sometimes injuries can be so debilitating that in-home support or support equipment is necessary to maintain one’s quality of life, and occupational therapists can help patients come to terms with these injuries.
Adaptive strategies and equipment can come in different forms, so it’s best to work with an occupational therapist to determine what is most helpful to each individual case.
4. Increase Strength and Decrease Pain
The pain of repetitive stress injuries on the job can often be attributed to the strain that comes with growing strength. However, just as one can workout too much and develop an overuse injury, repeated injuries can have lasting effects.
Occupational therapists can develop personalized exercises and guide patients through the positioning to help build the strength to lessen the strain on the body with on-the-job tasks.
5. Train in Home Safety and Caregiving
Sometimes injuries and conditions require dedicated help at home. Caregiving doesn’t have to be as challenging as you think.
Occupation therapists can train patients, family and caregivers through essential caregiving services and assistance necessary for the afflicted to leave an acute care or rehab hospital or just improve the healing process at home. An OT can examine the home and equipment available, then provide meaningful safety suggestions and custom programs.
6. Improve Coordination and Balance
Outpatient occupational therapy helps patients live a functional, independent life regardless of their disability or injury. And while the typical patient may be recovering from a shoulder injury, elbow injury or hand injury, Park North Physical Therapy also serves the neuro population, with OT services like gait training and balance training to improve mobility for patients suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s Disease.
Occupational therapists incorporate bilateral/unilateral coordination techniques to serve specific patient deficits so that they can better perform fine/gross motor coordination based activities. These programs focus on developing more efficiency for key daily activities like hygiene, grooming, dressing, bathing, leisure or work.
Join Park North’s Outpatient Occupational Therapy Program
Are you ready to integrate occupational therapy services into your life and restore the functionality you thought was lost? If you’re already working with a physical therapist for an existing injury or preventative therapy for sports, consider talking with your PT about your occupational therapy options.
A custom occupational therapy program can introduce the therapies, tools and techniques that help you utilize the best version of yourself. Schedule a Consultation with Park North PT Today!
Meet Park North Physical Therapy’s New Occupational Therapist:
Halima Akter, Occupational Therapist, Serving Upper Manhattan Area
We’re excited to introduce our new Occupational Therapist, Halima. She graduated from University at Buffalo with Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy and a Bachelors in Social Sciences Interdisciplinary with an Early Childhood Concentration.
Since graduating, Halima has served a variety of diverse populations in various settings such as hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and schools to provide exceptional client-centered care through holistic and evidence-based practice in order to maximize functional levels and quality of life.
Halima’s specialty is hand therapy - peaked by an interest in how the mind-to-muscle connection affects the anatomy of the upper extremities to perform meaningful movements to maximize exercises. Along with Park North PT, Halima believes that integration of technology-based therapeutic tools and skilled therapy interventions can advance the delivery of optimal patient results.
Outside of the clinic, Halima’s hobbies include playing multiplayer-based video games, being creative through needlework (such as embroidery, sewing cosplay costumes, illustrating webtoons/comics) and maintaining a healthy lifestyle through weight training.