Nursing has many definitions, but the essence of nursing is that nurses combine the art of caring with the science of health care. Nursing places its focus not only on a particular health problem, but on the whole patient and his or her response to treatment. Care of the patient and a firm base of scientific knowledge are indispensable elements.
There is a wide variety of nursing specialty areas; you will certainly be able to find one to fit any interest you have. Nurses have never been more important to health care than they are today. They must be well-educated, adaptable, and able to act as patient advocates. Nurses should be prepared for leadership roles in managing resources to promote better health care for their patients, whatever the location or setting.
What is a physical therapist?
A physical therapist is a specialist trained to work with a patient to restore their activity, strength, and motion following an injury, illness or surgery. Physical therapy (PT) can teach patients specific exercises, stretches, and techniques, and use specialized equipment to address problems that cannot be managed without PT training.
Who needs physical therapy?
- People recovering from injuries
- People with stiff joints and sore muscles
- Those needing to correct postural imbalance
- People experiencing abnormality of gait
- People experiencing weakness
Physical therapy is needed if a patient has suffered an injury or illness which has affected motor skills or function. The physical therapy program may consist of evaluation, therapeutic exercises, gait training, adaptive equipment recommendations, massage, heat cold or electrical treatments, all geared toward helping the patient attain his/her maximum functional motor potential. Typically, this service is considered skilled care. Customized exercises that include stretching and strengthening, manual therapy such as soft tissue mobilization, massage and specialized manual technique.
A speech therapist is a specialist with training in the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of speech, voice, and language disorders who works with people, unable to make speech sounds or cannot make them clearly. The speech therapist sets up a program of speech exercises to reduce the disability, and if necessary, enlists the aid of a psychologist or psychiatrist. Other disorders may result from hearing loss, stroke, cerebral palsy, mental disability, or brain injury.
Speech therapists keep careful records on the evaluation and progress of patients, often developing and implementing individualized treatment programs. In fact, because speech disorders are usually related to neurological, psychological, and physical conditions, speech therapists must be able to work as a member of a team which may include other healthcare specialists. An important part of a speech therapist's work is the counseling and support of individuals and families on speech disorders and on how to cope with the stress associated with these problems.
Occupational therapists (OTs) help people improve their ability to perform tasks in their daily living and working environments. They also help them to develop, recover, or maintain daily living and work skills. Occupational therapists help clients not only to improve their basic motor functions and reasoning abilities, but also to compensate for permanent loss of function. Their goal is to help clients have independent, productive, and satisfying lives.
Occupational therapists assist clients in performing activities of all types, ranging from using a computer to caring for daily needs such as dressing, cooking, and eating. Physical exercises may be used to increase strength and dexterity, while other activities may be chosen to improve visual acuity and the ability to discern patterns. For example, a client with short-term memory loss might be encouraged to make lists to aid recall, and a person with coordination problems might be assigned exercises to improve hand-eye coordination. Occupational therapists also use computer programs to help clients improve decisionmaking, abstract-reasoning, problem-solving, and perceptual skills, as well as memory, sequencing, and coordination—all of which are important for independent living.
Home Health Aide
HOME HEALTH AIDES, provide personal care while in the patient's home such as bathing, shampooing, and nail care. With additional time, aides may perform light housekeeping. Home health aides work under the supervision of a registered nurse or physical therapist.