OT vs PT: The Difference between Fields of Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy

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OT vs PT

Occupational therapy and physical therapy is a basic fallacy between two health care professions. Many wonder how different the areas are in the field of education especially when it comes to choosing a profession. Both occupational and physical therapists offer important therapies to help people learn or rebuild their skills, increase independence, use aids, and/or change their environments in order to enhance their everyday activities.

Although there are some related general clinical standards, occupational and physical therapy are unique. The choice of an educational route to becoming a physical or occupational therapist requires that you have a good academic background, a sound understanding of the profession, and understand the career that might best fit you.

The Basics:

Commencing with the meaning of both the terms in detail and understanding the difference between the two.

In fundamental terms, physical therapy primarily aims at enhancing the capability and functioning of a patient, whereas occupational therapy focuses on enhancing the ability of a patient to do daily activities.

Physical therapy:

PT is the physical recovery of people from accidents or diseases, and physical therapists address the real disability of the patient. Physical therapists are highly trained and used to relieve pain, regain balance, and avoid impairment in body mechanics. A physical therapist develops exercises to strengthen the muscles of the patient for walking, standing, and other movements.

Occupational Therapy:

OT takes a more systematic approach with the ultimate aim of supporting people with the utmost freedom necessary to carry out everyday activities. Occupational therapists manage their clients who recover from injury or establish or cognitive disability. They can include physical activity, therapeutic improvements, and many more. An occupational therapist may develop therapies to help the customer cope with everyday activities such as eating, bathing, etc.

Moving on to the Specific job duties of Physical Therapist and Occupational therapy:

Job duties

Physical Therapists:

Various job duties are to be performed by physical therapists in the Physical rehabilitation center.

  • Physical problems caused by accident or disease are diagnosed.
  • Develops patient-specific care plans.
  • Using stretches, stretching, hands-on therapy, and tools to increase strength, relieve discomfort, and enhance patient wellbeing.
  • Maintains paperwork and monitors the expectations and progress of patients.
  • Develop lifestyle plans tailored to minimize injury.
  • The recovery process explained in detail to the patients.

Occupational therapist:

  • Assess the condition and medical needs of the client.
  • Develops a customized client care plan.
  • Helps consumers manage everyday activities and self-care, as well as adaptive equipment recommendations.
  • Assess the home and/or workplace of the client to recognize possible changes, educate the family members about the changes, and recommend them some adjustments.

Goals of Physical and Occupational Therapy:

Therapists not only work in a Physical therapy clinic. They have goals and plan for every patient.

Physical Therapy:

  1. Developing or restoring movement, intensity, and motion range
  2. Helping you so that your condition does not get worse,
  3. Training you on how to retain your health and functionality overall.

Occupational therapy:

  1. Maximizing the capacity of a patient to perform different everyday activities safely and efficiently.
  2. Promoting growth and independence.
  3. Training caregivers on how to support those patients who are undergoing occupational therapy.

When we need these Therapies:

Physical Therapy:

Physical therapy services help patients to improve their condition faster.

  • Improving post-injury mobility
  • Restoration after an operation,
  • Pain Control,
  • hand disorders like  trigger finger and carpal tunnel syndrome
  • COPD chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung conditions.
  • Heart conditions, including heart failure or recovery following a heart attack,
  • Cancer,
  • neurological conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and recovery after a stroke
  • Urinary incontinence.

Occupational Therapy:

  • Restoration from accident or service,
  • Pain Regulation,
  • Neurological disorders such as Multiple sclerosis, brain paralysis, or stroke rehabilitation.
  • Conditions of the joint such as osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid arthritis,
  • psychological conditions, such as depression and anxiety,
  • dementia or Alzheimer’s disease,
  • hand conditions, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and trigger finger,
  • learning disorders, and intellectual disabilities.

Licensing:

Physical Therapy:

It is important for a physical therapist to be licensed. They must graduate from an accredited physical therapy school for taking a national physical therapist test.

Occupational Therapy:

While state-based licensing laws vary, common criteria include graduation from an accredited occupational therapy school, compliance with fieldwork standards, and a national exam for certification.

Conclusion:

While Physical and occupational therapy provides different methods and job roles, healthcare practitioners employed in these areas often do valuable clinical work to assist their patients with a better standard of living and greater independence. Furthermore, both sectors give the ability to work meaningfully to other citizens while receiving reasonable salaries on a highly-appreciated and requested employment market.At the end, physical and occupational therapy have their own importance.