hand therapy.

What is hand therapy?

The American Society of Hand Therapists (ASHT) defines hand therapy as “the art and science of rehabilitation of the upper extremity of the human body, which includes the hand, wrist, elbow, and shoulder girdle.”

Hand therapists are occupational therapists or physical therapists who, through extra training and experience, have specialized knowledge of upper extremity function. A Certified Hand Therapist has a minimum of five years of clinical experience, successfully passed and examination of advanced clinical skills and theory in upper extremity rehabilitation and meets mandated criteria to maintain this specialized credential.

Using targeted assessment and treatment, hand therapists work with their patients to prevent injury or impairment, restore functional activity, and enhance participation in daily life.

Occupational Therapy at Professional

Occupational therapy at Professional is limited to hand therapy only. Almost all of our hand therapists are OTs, but only treat hand and upper extremity conditions.

Occupational therapy and PT are closely aligned, but physical therapy treatments focus on improving function and reducing pain, while occupational therapy focuses on helping patients perform daily activities that their condition or illness prevents them from doing. While a PT might help someone bend and straighten their elbow after injury, an occupational therapist might help the same person be able to button their shirt or complete tasks while recovering.

Professional hand therapist doing hand therapy with a patient holding a green tool.

How can hand therapy help me?

A qualified hand therapist can evaluate and treat any problem relative to the upper extremities. The hand therapist can effectively treat and rehabilitate the patient through postoperative rehabilitation, preventative, non-operative, or conservative treatment, or industry consultation.

The therapist works closely with the physician and patient to provide a continuum of care. This often starts within days of the injury or surgery right through to the patient’s return to work and/or a productive lifestyle.

How do I know if I’m a candidate for hand therapy?

Before committing to a hand therapy treatment program, you should be sure that you’re a good candidate, and that hand therapy is actually right for you.

Hand therapy can be particularly useful for patients who suffered an accident or trauma that left them with scars, wounds, burns, injured tendons or nerves, fractures, or amputation of fingers, hands, and arms.  Those with conditions like tennis elbow and carpal tunnel also frequently benefit from hand therapy.

occupational hand therapist working on patient in NY for hand pain.

When to book an appointment

While hand therapy can address a wide range of issues, there are a few common instances when you should be sure to book an appointment. These include:

Wrist Fractures:

One of the most common reasons for seeking hand therapy, a wrist fracture is no fun for anyone. The sooner you get it checked out, the happier you’ll be.

Read more about wrist pain treatment here.

Elbow Fractures:

Elbow fractures can really limit your range of motion, and hamper your ability to perform everyday tasks. A hand therapist can help improve your elbow mobility with target exercises and casting.

Read more about elbow pain treatment here.

Custom Splinting:

Following an injury or surgery, custom splints can be a valuable part of the recovery process. Our certified hand specialists can design custom splints to help patients achieve optimal healing and support during recovery. They can fabricate splints that will help stretch and increase range of motion at a particular joint in the elbow, wrist and hand.

Read more about custom hand splinting here.

Ulnar Wrist Pain:

This typically occurs during rotational movements and weight bearing scenarios, and it can really put a damper on your softball season or gym schedule. Hand therapists can put together an effective program for managing ulnar-sided wrist pain, to reduce pain and improve your mobility.

With more than 70 hand specialists on our team, Professional PT is the largest provider of Certified Hand Therapy in the Northeast.

Occupational hand therapist working on patient for hand pain treatment.

What are some of hand therapy’s main benefits?

  • Treatments that don’t require an operation
  • Reducing sensitivity to nerve issues
  • Relief from pain
  • Expedited timeline for returning to work
  • Increased ability to perform everyday tasks
  • Regaining feeling after a nerve injury
  • Help crafting personalized home exercise programs that will benefit your movement and strength
  • Teaching patient how to use splints to help improve stiffness

Our hand therapy services

  • ADL (Activities of Daily Living) Training
  • Adaptive Equipment
  • Custom Orthotic Fabrication
  • Dexterity Training
  • Edema Management
  • Ergonomic Evaluations
  • Home Exercise Programs
  • Joint Mobilization
  • Nerve Mobilization
  • Pain Management
  • Physical Agent and Modalities
  • Scar Management
  • Sensory Desensitization and Re-education
  • Strengthening
  • Therapeutic Exercises to Improve Range of Motion and Function
  • Work Hardening/Conditioning
  • Wound Care

Get hand therapy today

Our occupational therapists will diagnose your hand pain and customize a rehabilitation plan just for you. We will work in an effective way to get you back on your feet, focused on your wellness before, during and after therapy.

Choose from the location list on the form, to request an appointment at an HT clinic near you.

Request an Appointment

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Cake Boss’s Buddy Valastro Seeks

Hand Therapy Treatment with Professional PT

Well-known celebrity master baker, Buddy Valastro suffered a severe injury to his right hand and has undergone multiple surgeries. He chose Professional PT’s Deana Swanson, MS, OTR/L, CHT for his recovery treatment to help him return to work and get back to doing what he loves, baking!
Cake boss and PT.
Cake boss high five.

Hand Therapy Clinics in New York City: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens

Hand Therapy Clinics in New York Long Island, Nassau County

Hand Therapy Clinics in New York Long Island, Suffolk County

Hand Therapy Clinics in New York Westchester County

Hand Therapy Clinics in New Jersey

Hand Therapy Clinics in Massachusetts

Insurances We Accept

Below is a condensed list of insurances we participate with throughout our network of physical therapy clinics.  Find your particular provider below based on your area.
For a complete listing of all insurance providers and individual plans by name: CLICK HERE FOR OUR FULL INSURANCE PAGE.


New York, New Jersey, Connecticut

  • Aetna (NY, NJ, CT)
  • AmeriHealth (NJ)
  • Anthem BCBS (CT)
  • Bardavon (Workers' Compensation – NY, NJ, CT)
  • Cigna/ASH (NY, NJ, CT)
  • CIGNA - Medicare (NY, NJ)
  • Claims Resolution Corp (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • ClearComp (Workers' Compensation – NY, NJ)
  • Clover Health Medicare Advantage (NJ)
  • Comp X (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • ConnectiCare (CT)
  • Department of Labor (Workers' Compensation – NY, NJ, CT)
  • Empire BCBS (Individual Providers In Network – NY)
  • Empire Plan MPN (UHC – NY, NJ)
  • Fidelis Wellcare (NJ)
  • First MCO (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • GHI (Emblem Health – NY, NJ, CT)
  • HIP (Emblem Health – NY)
  • Horizon BCBS (NJ)
  • Horizon Casualty (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • Independence BCBS (Southern NJ)
  • Magna Care (NY, NJ, CT)
  • Magna Comp (Workers' Compensation – NY, NJ, CT)
  • Medicare (NY, NJ, CT)
  • MedRisk (Workers' Compensation – NY, NJ, CT)
  • MultiPlan (NY, NJ, CT)
  • New Jersey Manufacturers (NJM - Workers' Compensation - NJ)
  • No Fault (Various Carriers)
  • Northwell Health Clinical Integration Network IPA (NY)
  • OccuNet (NJ)
  • One Call (Workers' Compensation - NY, NJ, CT
  • Oscar Health Plan (NY, NJ)
  • Oxford (Optum - NY, NJ, CT)
  • Providers Edge Scheduling Group/PESG (Workers' Compensation - NJ)
  • QualCare (NJ)
  • Qual-Lynx (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • SPNET (Workers' Compensation - NY, NJ, CT)
  • Streamline (Workers' Compensation – NJ)
  • United Health Care (Optum - NY, NJ, CT)
  • VACCN (Optum - NY, NJ, CT)
  • WellCare (NY)
  • Workers' Compensation (Various Carriers)

Massachusetts, New Hampshire

  • Aetna (MA, NH)
  • Ambetter/NH Healthy Families (NH)
  • Amerihealth Caritas (effective date 4/27/2020 - NH)
  • Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield (NH)
  • Bardavon (Workers' Compensation – MA, NH)
  • BCBS Massachusetts (MA)
  • CeltiCare (MA)
  • Cigna/ASH (NH)
  • Commonwealth Care Alliance (MA)
  • Fallon Health (MA)
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Care (MA, NH)
  • Health New England (MA)
  • MaineCare (NH)
  • Magna Care (MA, NH)
  • Magna Comp (Workers' Compensation – MA, NH)
  • Martin’s Point Health Care (NH)
  • Mass General Brigham Health (Formerly AllWays Health Partners)
  • Massachusetts Health (Medicaid – MA)
  • Medicaid (MA, NH)
  • Medicare (MA, NH)
  • Med Risk (Workers' Compensation – MA)
  • ML Healthcare (NF – MA, NH)
  • No Fault (Various Carriers)
  • Omni Healthcare (MVA Lien – MA, NH)
  • One Call (Workers' Compensation – MA, NH)
  • SPNET (Workers' Compensation – MA, NH)
  • Streamline (Workers' Compensation – MA, NH)
  • Tufts Cigna (MA)
  • Tufts Health Plan (MA, NH)
  • Tufts Medicare Advantage (MA)
  • Tufts Public (Medicaid – MA)
  • UniCare (MA)
  • United Health Care (Optum – MA, NH)
  • WellSense Health (Formerly BMC – Boston Medical Center – MA)
  • Workers’ Compensation (Various Carriers)

We will work in an effective way to get you back on your feet, focused on your wellness during and after therapy.