Yes, physical therapists provide hand therapy. A physical therapist receives the necessary instruction in their professional education to provide hand therapy. Some physical therapists complete additional training and experiences to earn the credential of Certified Hand Therapist (CHT). Both physical therapists and occupational therapists are eligible for this credential. Your physical therapist may refer you to a CHT if the therapist believes that would be in your best interest.
Arthritis is a chronic condition and therefore, it’s important to understand what you can do to remain active at home, work and with recreational activities. Your treatment plan may include ice and heat to decrease periodic stiffness, swelling, discomfort and pain. Range of motion and strengthening exercises will likely be prescribed dependingon the type and extent of arthritis symptoms and joint damage. Your therapist will also discuss the importance of energy conservation and joint protection. Following your therapist’s specific treatment plan will give you the most comfort, mobility and function possible.