Occupational therapy

At Edward-Elmhurst Health, our expert occupational therapy team is here to help you remain active and independent, even when life takes an unexpected turn. Whether your condition is the result of an illness or injury, or is caused by developmental issues, we can help you move forward.

What makes us different?

  • Clinical expertise
  • One-on-one treatments with the same therapist each session
  • All treatments are provided by a licensed therapist
  • Focus on function

Specialized occupational therapy services

Our licensed occupational therapists provide a full suite of services for individuals and injured workers at multiple locations. Specialized services include lymphedema therapy, cognitive therapy, sensory therapy and hand therapy.

Cognitive therapy

At Edward-Elmhurst Health, we have occupational and speech therapists who can address cognitive difficulties to help you regain independence with self-care and improve quality of life.

The ability to acquire knowledge, understand spoken or written language, plan out daily activities, and remember important details are fundamental components of independent living. Unfortunately, through a brain injury (stroke, TBI, or concussion), brain tumor, or degenerative neurological condition (Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, etc.) these activities can become increasingly difficult.

  • Aphasia is a language disorder where a person experiences difficulty speaking, reading, writing, or understanding language. Aphasia can be caused by stroke or traumatic injury to the brain and includes a variety of types based on the where the injury occurred.
  • Traumatic brain injuries occur when someone experiences either a blow or penetrating injury to the head. TBI can result in cognitive deficits affecting concentration, memory, and problem-solving, which in turn can negatively impact participation in daily routines.
  • Dementia is a group of symptoms related to memory loss and overall cognitive impairment. Most types of dementias continue to worsen and are usually irreversible. Alzheimer's disease is the most common and well-studied cause of dementia, affecting up to 70 percent of those diagnosed with dementia. People with dementia often need help taking care of themselves and many have difficulty communicating with others. Everyday activities such as grooming, preparing meals, and driving, may become difficult.

Neurological occupational therapy

A brain injury, tumor, or degenerative neurological condition can significantly impact the ability to plan and perform activities of daily living (i.e. dressing, feeding, bathing, tying shoes, etc.). The loss of sensation and control in the arm and hand opposite the side of the brain affected by the stroke can significantly impact daily activities as well. A stroke can also cause a person to be able to see objects only in certain parts of his or her field of vision.

Occupational therapists can help with upper body coordination, strength and fine motor skills to improve daily functioning. They use repetitive training and integration of adaptive techniques to retrain muscle function and allow for success during daily routine and activities in the community. Occupational therapists also perform cognitive re-training in relation to home management activities, driving and returning to work safely.

Occupational therapy treatments include:

  • Ocular (eye) training
  • Functional task training
  • Improving ability to effectively perform self-care and home management activities
  • Improving ability to return to driving
  • Improving ability to return to work
  • Implementation of strategies to assist with cognition during daily activities
  • Improving ability to return to leisure activities

Neurological speech therapy

Speech therapists can assist with difficulties in attention, awareness, orientation, memory, problem solving, and reasoning skills resulting from a brain injury, brain tumor, or degenerative neurological condition.

Upper extremity orthopedics / Hand therapy

Orthopedics is the area of medicine dedicated to preserving and restoring function in the musculoskeletal system which includes bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves.

Edward-Elmhurst occupational therapists have expertise in a variety of specialties to fit your specific orthopedic needs. We focus on the treatment and adaptation of bilateral upper extremity conditions from hand to shoulder, for all ages. We will match you with the right therapist and location to improve your functional outcomes and overall satisfaction.

Our occupational therapists help treat a variety of conditions, such as:

  • Amputations
  • Arthritis – rheumatoid arthritis and basal joint arthritis of the thumb
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome and cubital tunnel syndrome
  • Crush injuries
  • De Quervain’s syndrome
  • Dupuytren’s contracture
  • Hand and upper extremity fractures
  • Muscle strains, tears and avulsions
  • Nerve injuries and conditions
  • Tendon injuries and tendonitis
  • Tennis elbow
  • Traumatic injuries
  • Trigger finger

Hand therapy

Hand therapy is a specialty practice area of occupational therapy with the goal to return you to full participation in your daily activities. Our certified occupational therapists have advanced clinical skills to identify your specific needs and challenges for return to pre-injury functional status.

Our occupational therapists with specific training in hand therapy provide the following services:

  • Edema control after hand injury
  • Injury prevention
  • Joint protection training
  • Pain management
  • Scar remodeling
  • Stretching and strengthening programs
  • Wound care related to the hands
  • Ultrasound, electrical stimulation, dry heat whirlpool and other treatment modalities

Custom splinting

We provide custom hand splinting/bracing to maximize your healing process, using the latest techniques and the most appropriate splint for your diagnosis. Splint options include dynamic splints, static splints and prefabricated splints. Custom splinting is provided with an order from the doctor and splints are typically fabricated on the same day as the evaluation.




Pediatric rehabilitation

Occupational therapy addresses physical and developmental impairments to help children master daily life skills. Our experienced pediatric occupational therapists will work with your child to help him or her succeed in the important areas of his or her life.

Treatment includes therapies to address range of motion, strengthening and coordination. We provide early intervention services, help facilitate success in school, and promote a healthy lifestyle. We also specialize in the use of multimodal techniques to improve sensory modulation and processing.

Learn more about pediatric rehabilitation services at Edward-Elmhurst Health.

Occupational Health and Worker's Compensation

The physical and occupational therapists at Edward-Elmhurst Health are specialists in work-related injuries and support the philosophy of rapid return to the workplace with or without restricted duty.

For the patient

Beginning with the initial evaluation and continuing through the individualized treatment program, we work with each patient to recover from injury and regain skills for work-related tasks. We provide direction on ergonomic modifications, instruction on body mechanics, injury prevention and perform "return to work" testing as needed.

To further assist the individual to reach their full post-injury potential and transition from injury recovery to return to work, we offer a work conditioning program at our Seven Bridges Fitness Center. Additionally, formal functional capacity evaluations can be scheduled at our Naperville Dynacom clinic to measure physical strength, range of motion, stamina, and tolerance of functional activities, to determine the necessity of work restrictions.

For the employer

Edward-Elmhurst Health Rehabilitation offers post-offer test design and implementation. Our test design is based on the essential physical demands of each job position. As needed, we can assist the employer in identifying those demands in order to provide testing that is OSHA, ADA and EEOC compliant. We offer employee training in ergonomics and musculoskeletal injury prevention across all work shifts. We also perform individual ergonomic assessments and can provide recommendations on ergonomic modifications from a short term “fix” to “an ideal situation,” recognizing the fiscal and scheduling realities of the work environment.

What makes us different?

  • One-on-one treatments with the same therapist each session
  • All treatments provided by a licensed therapist
  • Focus on function and return to work goals
  • We treat non-surgical, pre-surgical and post-surgical patients

Comprehensive occupational health services include:

  • Functional capacity evaluations (FCE)
  • Workers’ compensation rehabilitation
  • Work conditioning
  • Job/work site analysis
  • Post-offer/job-specific screenings
  • Back-to-school or work screenings
  • Ergonomics screenings


  • Strengthening and stretching
  • Stability training
  • Mobility training
  • Functional activity training
  • Education on injury prevention upon return to work
  • Pain science education
  • Body mechanics and ergonomic training
  • Pain reducing modalities