3 Ways Occupational and Physical Therapy Benefits People with CMT

3 Ways Occupational and Physical Therapy Benefits People with CMT

People with CMT often face several challenges daily. People with CMT can struggle with things that others take for granted, from simple tasks such as buttoning a shirt to more complicated activities like driving. Thankfully, occupational and physical therapy can benefit those living with CMT.

CMT, or Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, is a genetic disorder group that affects the peripheral nerves. These nerves are responsible for sending signals from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles, so people can experience muscle weakness and atrophy when they are affected. CMT is progressive, meaning that it typically gets worse over time, and there is no cure.

1. Increased Independence and Improved Quality of Life

One of the main goals of occupational and physical therapy is to help people with CMT become as independent as possible. It means teaching people how to safely and efficiently for them perform everyday tasks. For example, an occupational therapist may teach a CMT person how to use adaptive equipment to button a shirt or brush their teeth. A physical therapist may teach a person with CMT how to use their wheelchair in a way that maximizes their independence.

In addition to increasing independence, occupational and physical therapy can also help improve people’s overall quality of life with CMT. These therapies can help people stay active and involved in their hobbies and interests. For example, a physical therapist may help a person with CMT stay active by developing an exercise program tailored to their specific needs. An occupational therapist may help a person with CMT participate in their favorite hobby by finding ways to adapt it to their abilities.

2. Reduced Pain, Discomfort, and Improved Mental Health

People with CMT often experience a great deal of pain and discomfort. CMT can cause nerve damage, muscle weakness, and other problems. Thankfully, occupational and physical therapy can help reduce pain and discomfort by teaching people how to manage their symptoms. For example, a physical therapist may teach a person with CMT how to use heat or cold therapy to reduce pain. An occupational therapist may teach a person with CMT how to use adaptive equipment to make everyday tasks easier.

In addition to physical benefits, people with CMT can also experience improved mental health due to occupational and physical therapy. It is because these therapies can help reduce stress and anxiety. For example, an occupational therapist may teach a person with CMT to use relaxation techniques to reduce stress. A physical therapist may teach a person with CMT how to stay active to improve their mood.

3. Improved Social Skills

One of the challenges that people with CMT often face is social isolation. It is because CMT can make it challenging to participate in social activities. Thankfully, occupational and physical therapy can help improve social skills by teaching people how to interact with others. For example, an occupational therapist may teach a person with CMT how to start a conversation or join a group activity. A physical therapist may teach a person with CMT how to use their wheelchair to allow them to participate in social activities.

Occupational and physical therapy are two types of therapies that benefit people with CMT. Occupational therapy helps people with CMT improve their ability to perform activities of daily living, such as dressing, bathing, and eating. Physical therapy helps people with CMT improve their strength, flexibility, and range of motion. Both occupational and physical therapy can help people with CMT improve their quality of life.

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