Rehabilitation therapy

Last updated date: 13-Apr-2023

Originally Written in English

Rehabilitation Therapy

Occupational, physical, and speech therapy are the three basic categories of rehabilitation therapy. Each type of rehabilitation has its own purpose in aiding a person's complete recovery, but they all have the same end objective of assisting the patient in returning to a healthy and active lifestyle.

Rehabilitation treatment can help with different types of injuries and diseases. Orthopedic and musculoskeletal disorders such as sprains/strains/tears or post-surgical rehabilitation, neurological traumas such as stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury, or multi-trauma injuries related to accidents are among the most common conditions managed. In addition to treating more common problems, they also treat genetic disorders, neurodegenerative disorders, and other specialty conditions.  They handle people of all ages, from babies to the elderly.

The purpose of rehabilitative therapy differs from one person to a different. All patient's rehabilitation goals are discussed with the doctor, and a plan is devised. This can involve several types of therapy, such as physical, occupational, speech, music, or recreational therapy, as well as various treatment approaches, such as exercise therapy, manual therapy, neurological re-education, or pain relief modalities, to mention a few.


Outpatient VS. Inpatient Rehabilitation Therapy

To begin, it's critical to distinguish between inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation therapy. Inpatient rehabilitation is the treatment or therapy you undergo before being discharged from a hospital or clinic. Patients who have had an amputation, have had a stroke or brain trauma, have had a musculoskeletal or spinal cord injury, or have had a transplant may need inpatient care to rehabilitate to the point that they may safely return home. Treatment received outside of a hospital or clinic is referred to as outpatient rehabilitation therapy. Physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, and psychologists provide treatments in outpatient therapy facilities. Cancer, neurological diseases, neck and back pain, speech impairments, psychiatric disorders, pre- and post-natal complications, and other conditions are commonly treated in outpatient rehabilitation centers.


Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is the assessment and treatment of aberrant physical function as a result of an accident, disability, or other health issues.

Physical therapists are trained and credentialed movement professionals, according to the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA). They are capable of diagnosing and treating a wide range of injuries, impairments, and disorders.

Physical therapists work on improving a person's mobility and quality of life while also preventing further injury or disability.

Outpatient clinics, private clinics, hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, nursing homes, home care, sports and fitness environments, schools, hospices, occupational settings, government agencies, and research centers are all places where licensed physiotherapists operate.


What to Expect?

A physical therapist assists patients in all stages of recovery, from the original diagnosis to the restorative and preventative stages. Physical therapy is often used alone or in conjunction with other treatments.

A doctor may send a patient to a physical therapist, while others seek treatment on their own.

A physical therapist, according to the World Confederation for Physical Therapy, obtains training that allows them to:

  • conduct a physical examination and assessment of a person's movement, flexibility, muscle and joint movement, and function, as well as learning about their medical history.
  • provide a clinical diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment plan with both short- and long-term objectives
  • treatment and intervention in physical therapy
  • provide self-management advice, including activities that can be done at home

Physical therapy treatment may include, in addition to physical manipulation:

  • Iontophoresis is a method of delivering drugs, such as topical steroids, using an electrical current. Inflammation could also be reduced as a result of this.
  • There are two types of electrical stimulation. Pain is reduced with transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. Neuromuscular electrical stimulation, on the other hand, attempts to increase muscle engagement by stimulating muscular motor units.
  • Heat, moist heat, and cold therapy may be beneficial for a variety of ailments.
  • Light therapy is a type of medical treatment that involves the use of special lights and lasers to address certain medical disorders.


Who Require a Physical Therapist?

Depending on their specialty, physical therapists can give additional treatment for a wide range of medical issues.

Physical therapists may not manage medical diseases other than pure musculoskeletal conditions directly and independently, but they do try to improve recovery or teach people how to improve their movement patterns.

Physical therapy may be beneficial for the following conditions:

  • Chronic obstructive lung disease, cystic fibrosis, and post-myocardial infarction heart problems are examples of cardiopulmonary problems.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome and trigger finger are two disorders that affect the hands.
  • Back discomfort, rotator cuff injuries, and temporomandibular joint abnormalities are all examples of musculoskeletal dysfunction.
  • Strokes, spinal cord injuries, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, vestibular impairment, and traumatic brain injuries are examples of neurological diseases.
  • Cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy are two common childhood diseases.
  • Concussions and tennis elbow are examples of sports-related ailments.
  • Urinary incontinence and lymphedema are examples of female health and pelvic floor disorders.
  • Burns, wound management, and diabetic foot ulcers are examples of skin disorders or injuries.


Physical Therapy Types

Physical Therapy Types

There are numerous different types of physical therapy, and therapists generally specialize in one or more of them. These are a few examples:

  • Musculoskeletal injuries including the muscles, bones, ligaments, fascia, and tendons are treated with orthopedic physical therapy. Fractures, strains, tendonitis, bursitis, chronic health issues, and rehabilitation or recovery from orthopedic surgery are all conditions that can benefit from it. Joint mobilizations, manual therapy, strength exercises, flexibility training, and other techniques may be used to treat patients.
  • Geriatric physical therapy can help older persons with problems like arthritis, osteoporosis, Alzheimer's disease, hip and joint replacement, balance issues, and incontinence that impact their movement and physical performance. This type of treatment focuses on improving mobility, decreasing pain, and improving physical fitness.
  • People with neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, head trauma, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, spinal injury, and stroke may benefit from neurological physical therapy. Increase limb responsiveness, enhancing movement patterns, improving strength, and encouraging balance may all be goals of treatment.
  • People who have been impacted by certain cardiopulmonary diseases or surgical operations may benefit from cardiovascular and pulmonary rehabilitation. Muscle and cardiovascular endurance and stamina can be improved with treatment.
  • Wound care therapy Improved circulation to assist ensure that a healed wound receives appropriate oxygen and blood. Manual therapies, electric stimulation, compression therapy, and wound care are all examples of physical therapy.
  • Vestibular treatment is used to treat balance issues that can occur as a result of inner ear abnormalities. Vestibular physical therapy consists of a variety of exercises and manual approaches that can assist patients in regaining balance and coordination.
  • Decongestive therapy can help individuals with lymphedema and other disorders involving fluid accumulation drain collected fluid.
  • Pelvic floor rehabilitation can aid in the treatment of disorders that impact the pelvic floor, such as urine or fecal incontinence, urinary urgency, and pelvic pain as a result of trauma, surgery, or specific conditions.


Physical Therapy Benefits

Physical Therapy Benefits

Physical therapy may provide the following benefits, depending on the cause for treatment:

  • The use of painkillers is minimized, and surgery is avoided.
  • Better movement and flexibility
  • Recovery after an injury or a traumatic event
  • Falling avoidance after a stroke or disability
  • Age-related medical problems are better managed with a better balance.

A sports therapist can assist an athlete to improve their performance by improving specific body parts and teaching them new ways to use muscles.

Individuals can get advice from a physical therapist or another healthcare practitioner about the benefits that are particular to their medical history and therapeutic options.


Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy

Individuals who require specific assistance to participate in everyday activities, or "occupations," can benefit from occupational therapy treatments. Occupations can refer to self-care routines, everyday tasks, and recreational hobbies in addition to work or employment. Occupational therapy's purpose is to help people in performing the things they want and need to do in order to live an independent and satisfying life.

Occupational therapists assist people by modifying factors that make it difficult for them to do tasks including eating, bathing, brushing their teeth, performing school duties, and working. Modifications may involve modifying the approach to the activity, changing the setting in which the task is accomplished, or assisting a person in developing the skills required to complete particular activities.


Who is an Occupational Therapist?

A master's degree in occupational therapy is required to work as an occupational therapist. Occupational therapists typically hold a bachelor's degree in a relevant subject (biology, human physiology, exercise science).

An occupational therapist will usually conduct an assessment when meeting with a new patient. The assessment will aid them in developing a unique treatment plan for the patient. The therapist may also visit the patient and family members to discuss what the family may do to help the patient on his or her path.

A person may attend a treatment program for a short period of time or for a longer period of time. The therapist and the patient continue to track progress and set goals for the patient's most essential everyday activities.


Who Need an Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy

People of all ages, from babies to elders, may need occupational therapy. Occupational therapy can help these people in a variety of ways, including:

  • A therapist may be necessary to help children with physical limitations gain the coordination essential to feed themselves, use a laptop, or strengthen their handwriting.
  • Adults with depression may need therapist advice on how to progressively re-engage in daily activities in a way that enhances their chances of recovery.
  • A person who has lost the capacity to hold a fork as a result of an injury can work with a therapist to rebuild hand function and adapt actions so that they can feed themselves.
  • Seniors with physical limitations may require the assistance of a therapist in order to participate in their favorite activities in new and adapted ways.
  • Those who have had a spinal cord injury may need therapist assistance to avoid movements or habits that could aggravate their condition.
  • Corporate workers can engage with a therapist to find the best work/life balance for them in order to minimize stress and improve their health, or they can change their work environment using ergonomic principles.
  • A therapist may be required to assist a person who has suffered a traumatic brain injury and has lost cognitive performance with things such as applying for jobs or completing university applications.


Occupational Therapy Benefits

Occupational Therapy Benefits

Let's look at some of the great benefits of occupational therapy now that you have a better grasp of occupational therapy and therapists.


1. Help children learn and thrive

When it comes to schooling, children with physical or mental challenges may require additional assistance. Occupational therapists can help youngsters who are having difficulty learning in the classroom.

Children who work with occupational therapists learn in methods that are tailored to their specific requirements. An occupational therapist can also assist you if you have a child with special needs. They can show you how to teach your child new abilities or information in the most effective way possible. Children of all abilities can learn critical life skills with the help of a therapist.


2. Increase independence

Aging can lead to a loss of independence in older people. Family members or loved ones may be concerned about an elderly person falling or hurting themselves while alone at home. Or, they may be anxious about an older adult's rehabilitation from a fall or a cerebrovascular disease.

Occupational therapists can assist older persons in regaining independence by focusing on their physiological and cognitive health. A therapist can help with hygiene duties such as bathing, going to the toilet, and brushing one's teeth. They may also assist a person in learning to cook for oneself or pay their expenses.

The therapist will work with the person to help them acquire the abilities that are most vital in their daily lives.


3. Improve memory

Occupational therapists are often associated with physical health issues, but they can also assist with mental health issues, such as memory.

Memory issues are widespread among the elderly, but they are not always present. Dealing with an occupational therapist might help you avoid or improve memory loss.

Memory games and puzzles are used by occupational therapists to assist patients to improve their memory. An occupational therapist cannot fix dementia or Alzheimer's disease, but they can provide recommendations to help people live better lives.


4. Home modifications

Occupational therapists commonly collaborate with people and families to make home adaptations since they focus on everyday routines. A disabled person may require specialized equipment to continue improving their ability to function at home. The therapist may also suggest a specific room design or certain colors for various objects in the home.

A therapist can also teach a person or their caregiver how to use or construct home adaptations. A walk-in bathroom or shower, a wheelchair ramp, or more handrails throughout the house are examples of these changes.


5. Caregivers' assistance

Another advantage of occupational therapy is that it may provide caregivers with advice and training. Occupational therapists are frequently sought out by disabled children or children with aging parents.

Therapists will explain the problem and the treatment strategy to caregivers. They will offer advice and instruction on how to effectively support the client and what to expect along his or her journey.


6. Dealing with visual impairment

Individuals with vision problems are treated by occupational therapists. They can make life easier for persons with vision impairments by making home adaptations and providing training.

To improve visibility at a person's home or office, an occupational therapist may suggest color-coded signs or magnifying aids.

Despite the fact that a therapist cannot restore perfect vision, they can assist a person to live a happier, less stressful existence.


7. Patience and kindness

Occupational therapists are, above all, some of the most selfless members of the health system. They care about their patients and engage with them and their families with kindness and patience.

Occupational therapists are trusted specialists who family and friends can consult if they have issues or queries about assisting a loved one who may be suffering from a physical or mental illness.

Because they feel accomplished and encouraged by their therapist, occupational therapy can increase a person's happiness and self-esteem.


Speech Therapy

Speech Therapy

Speech therapy uses strategies and exercises to address delays and problems in verbal ability, articulation, oral motor deficits, apraxia of speech, interpersonal language, stuttering, feeding and swallowing, and cognitive abilities in order to improve total communication. therapists provide pediatric speech therapy for children of all ages. Certified speech-language pathologists, also known as speech therapists, work closely with your child or toddler to evaluate their capacity to communicate and understand others before designing personalized therapy sessions based on each child's speech and language objectives.


Why Would My Child Need Speech Therapy?

speech abnormalities

Different speech abnormalities, such as stuttering, difficulty pronouncing words, pitch, volume, or quality of speech impairments, and a restricted understanding of words and their meaning, are all managed in children. Some children have difficulty stringing words together or using language inappropriately. Others suffer from memory and focus problems. Some kids have difficulty swallowing, chewing, coughing, or refusing to eat. Speech therapy may also be required if a child's speech has been harmed as a result of an injury or illness. A youngster may require speech therapy for a variety of reasons. If you see that your kid is falling behind their peers or missing developmental stages for their age, your child may benefit from continuous or intensive speech therapy.


Speech Therapy Benefits

Speech Therapy Benefits

Children can benefit from speech therapy in a variety of ways, including:

  • Help with communication

Providing unassisted and/or assisted communication (e.g., no-tech communication materials, low and mid-tech communication devices, high-tech communication devices, and/or communication applications) for children who do not have a voice. Speech and language therapy encompasses not just speech but also language. Many people believe that speech therapy is only about improving one's speech, but it is so much more.

  • Help with social skills

Appropriate pragmatic/social skills are essential for engaging with others their society and in their daily lives. Pragmatic language abilities are often considerably delayed and disorganized when you have limited or no functional speech. Video modeling, role-play, specific therapy applications, social storytelling, and other tactics and resources can all be used to target social skills. Speech therapy includes the use of supported communication in conjunction with these tactics to work on developing these interpersonal skills.

  • Help with reading

Listening, reading, and writing can all be affected by speech delay. Reading and reading abilities can help you communicate more effectively. You can communicate freely after you know how to spell. Teaching these important skills can help you communicate more effectively with others.

  • Enhances alternative communication methods

Work on alternative communication tactics including gestures, sign language, approximations, vocalizations, and/or other modes of communication to aid conversation. As humans, we use a holistic approach to communicating. Speech, facial expressions, gestures, eye contact, writing, typing, and a variety of other methods are all used to communicate.



Rehabilitation is a type of treatment that aims to help you regain, maintain, or develop the abilities you need to function in everyday life. These skills could be physical, intellectual, or cognitive in nature (thinking and learning). You may have lost them as a result of a disease or accident, or as a result of a medical treatments' negative effects. Rehabilitation can help you live a better life and function better.