Recently RVNAhealth had a chance to discuss Occupational Therapy with Wendy Mutter, Marketing Director and Admissions Liaison from Lutheran Home of Southbury. Wendy hosts a regular series called Lutheran Home Live, profiled on Southbury.com, aiming to educate the Southbury public on available health and aging services. Danielle Taibi MOTR/L, CDP (below, left), a licensed Occupational Therapist since 2013 and Home Health Aide Supervisor for RVNAhealth StayWELL Services, had a chance to talk about RVNAhealth services and cover the basics of Occupational Therapy and its approach.
Danielle began by explaining the difference between Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy – a topic very often misunderstood. Occupational Therapy often focuses on addressing an injury or illness that has disrupted a person’s normal activities of daily life – activities as basic as eating, bathing, dressing, for example – and then helping that person regain function. Typically, a physical therapist and an occupational therapist will have the same goals for a patient’s recovery, but their approach and techniques will differ. Occupational Therapy focuses less on bio-mechanical exercise — typical of physical therapy — and more on common meaningful activities and fine motor skills to help one regain their optimal function. Danielle provided the example of using laundry folding as a functional Occupational Therapy technique to work on a person’s range of motion improvement.
Falls prevention was another topic discussed and of frequent importance to Occupational Therapists working in the home. More than 1 in 4 older adults fall every year and 60% of these falls happen in the home. When an Occupational Therapist enters a home to work on mobility issues, falls prevention is a priority and can be addressed through a home assessment. An Occupational Therapist can identify risks in the home and make recommendations, often starting with the removal or securing of area rugs and electrical wires and assessing the bathroom for possible assistance equipment needs or grab bars. While often simple recommendations, changes such as these can make a significant difference to remaining safe in one’s home.
RVNAhealth offers Occupational Therapy services both in the home and at our outpatient Rehabilitation & Wellness Center, located in Ridgefield. Please visit our website to learn more about RVNAhealth’s Occupational Therapy services and team. And for more information specific to falls prevention, please see RVNAhealth’s recent Falls Prevention webinar.
Thank you to Wendy Mutter of the Lutheran Home of Southbury for profiling Occupational Therapy and RVNAhealth. And thank you to On the Mend Medical Supplies & Equipment for hosting the interview in their wonderful store in Southbury. You can view the full video interview here.