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Rehab specialists boost quality of life

The National Rehabilitation Awareness Foundation celebrates a week of September every year to teach folks about the benefits that rehabilitation brings to the quality of life for many. They work to create programs that “aim to increase opportunities for the nearly 50,000 Americans with disabilities, and help those who are disabled live up to their fullest potential.”

This year’s observance of National Rehabilitation Awareness Week is Sept. 20-26.

Why a physical therapist?

Physical therapists are your partners in health. They are experts in the way the body moves. As highly educated health care professionals, physical therapists help you maintain mobility and quality of life without surgery or prescription medication, in many cases.

Physical therapists can get you moving and enjoying life again, using scientifically based treatment techniques that focus on restoring function, reducing pain and preventing injury.

A physical therapist, often in collaboration with you and your physician, will work to help you achieve a healthy, active lifestyle and can help you manage your health over the long term.

What is occupational therapy?

If you have ever been in a situation in which you were physically unable to complete your daily tasks, an occupational therapist can help. Occupational therapists are heath and rehabilitation professionals who help individuals achieve independence in their lives despite disabilities. Independence can be achieved several ways: through adaptation of tasks or environment, improving strength, improving the fine motor coordination and through patient and family education.

Here are a few ways to celebrate National Rehabilitation Awareness every day.

• Thank the physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech therapists who work tirelessly to promote functionality and normal living activities for their patients.

• Encourage loved ones to seek rehabilitation therapy if they are having issues with daily living tasks.

• Help others learn basic techniques to promote a mobility and functionality.

So this month, and every other month, let’s give praise where praise is due: to the great rehab therapists of the world. And, for all of us physical therapists, occupational therapist and speech-language patholotists, we can join forces to shed some light on the vital role we play in our professions.

To Your Health is written by the staff of Boulder City Hospital. For more information, call 702-293-4111, ext. 576, or visit bouldercityhospital.org.

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