Occupational Therapy Vs. Physiotherapy

Occupational Therapy Vs. Physiotherapy

Occupational therapy and physiotherapy are types of rehabilitative care, where there are many commonalities, however they are different from each other.

Occupational therapy focuses on helping people regain independence in their daily activities whereas Physiotherapy focuses on restoring movements and functions to individual who have been affected by injury or because of a disability. 

This post elaborates on how the functions of occupational therapy and physiotherapy vary in regaining or improving the movement to promote independence in individuals. Let’s begin!

Difference Between Physiotherapy and Occupation Therapy

The fundamental difference between Occupational therapy and Physiotherapy is the purpose they serve. In simple words, PT helps improve physical movements, improving the individuals ability to move their body, while OT enables individuals to accomplish functional tasks such as picking or grasping objects, cooking, etc. Thus, Physiotherapy promotes mobility, whereas Occupational Therapy promotes independence in performing routine tasks, such as cooking, cleaning, taking a bath, etc. Putting it simply:

    • Physiotherapy is used to enhance the quality of the movement and functional abilities, while occupation          therapy promotes the ability to perform everyday activities, thereby enhancing self-reliance &                              independence. 

    • Physiotherapy enables you to go to the kitchen, whereas occupational therapy can help you prepare food        for yourself.

What Is Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy is a holistic approach that aims to provide individuals with better independence in completing daily activities. For example, occupational therapy may help an individual recover from stroke and help them regain independence in their day to day activities like dressing, eating, brushing teeth and using fork or knife. An occupational therapist uses techniques that may include the alteration of the activities, environment or skills of the individuals to improve their motor skill.

When Is Occupational Therapy Required?

Occupational therapy maybe recommended in some of these cases:

    • Developmental conditions, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), learning disorders, and intellectual          disabilities.

    • Concerns related to hyperactivity, impulsivity, inattention, concentration and cognitive development.

    • Difficulties related to fine and gross motor skills.

    • Sensory processing concerns. 

    • Dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

    • Pain management.

    • Neurological conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, or recovery from a stroke.

    • Hand conditions, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and trigger finger.

Who is an Occupational Therapist (OT) ?

An occupational therapist holds a 4-year bachelor’s degree in an occupational therapy. Besides, this they can also have a master’s degree in any subfield of OT.

What is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy aims to optimize body movement, mobility and function, through exercises, stretches and physical activities. PT enables a person to restore, strengthen and increase range of motion post-accident or injury to reduce pain, i.e., the movement of the larger muscles. Besides, it can also help enhance the coordination of the legs, arms, and other big body parts. PT not only enable individuals to restore optimal movement after an injury, but also prevent further injury by educating them about the right practices and preventive care.

When is Physiotherapy Required?

Physiotherapy can be used to improve mobility and motor skills (movement of the larger muscles after an injury). It can be beneficial in improving the movement and the range of motion. Furthermore, it reduces the pain and promote strength.

    • Improving mobility after an injury.

    • Recovery following a surgical procedure.

    • Pain management.

    • Joint conditions, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis.

    • Neurological conditions, including multiple sclerosis.

    • Cerebral palsy.

    • Spina Bifida.

Who is a Physiotherapist (PT)?

Physiotherapists are professionals who have completed an undergraduate program in Physiotherapy (4-year UG program),. Alternatively, candidates can also complete their masters in  sub field of PT.

Summing It Up!

Occupational and Physiotherapy are different in many aspects. However, their overall purpose is to improve functioning, promote quality of life, and educate people to maintain good health and well-being. It is better to consult with an expert before getting started with any of these therapies for yourself or someone you really care about. 

Reflect Within is a trusted clinic in Mumbai for the mental and psychological well-being of individuals. Here, you can get the right consultation and the best physiotherapy or occupational therapy aid. 

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