Restorative Therapy

Restorative Therapy at Golden Oaks


As our seniors enter the golden years of life, we find that they are faced with challenging decisions regarding their healthcare and lifestyle. Like most seniors, they may prefer to maintain their private residence. However, if problems with mobility or activities of daily living prevent them from maintaining an independent lifestyle in their home, there are other living arrangements that will still allow them home-like amenities and yet still provide the physical assistance they need to maintain their functional independence, well-being and autonomy.

Restorative therapy is designed to help residents maintain their mobility, balance, and strength. It supplements occupational and physical therapy programs with individualized exercise routines. The goal is to maximize the resident’s level of function throughout the underlying course of his or her disease while maintaining participation in activities of daily living for as long as possible. Life can be improved by restoring the ability to take care of one’s own needs and maximizing abilities.

By focusing on physical restoration even when cognitive remediation may not be possible, Golden Oaks residents are able to be more active and engaged in life. We believe in providing fulfilling lives for as long as possible, because “Every Golden Moment Matters.”

Restorative therapy is guided by an assessment made by the resident’s medical practitioner or therapist, and may take place after rehabilitation due to an injury or illness. This therapy may also be part of ongoing, long-term care.

The basic restorative nursing categories from which programs are developed include:

1. Active and Passive Range of Motion

2. Bladder Training 

3. Bed mobility

4. Transfer Training

5. Dressing or grooming

6. Walking

7. Eating or Swallowing

8. Communication

Restorative programs are established by Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapists and may commence after a skilled therapy episode.  Therefore, if patients have the potential to improve their overall function but do not meet the requirements for reimbursement of therapy services through Medicare or other insurance providers, they may be ideal candidates for restorative nursing services.

For example: Mr. Walker is a resident of a skilled nursing facility who underwent a total hip replacement following a hip fracture. He began physical therapy services for strengthening and ambulation (walking). He has no other major health problems besides arthritis. After four weeks of therapy, he was able to walk 150 feet with a rolling walker. This is a functional distance for Mr. Walker because it is the distance required to walk from his bed to the bathroom. Therefore, his therapist prepared to discharge physical therapy services.

However, Mr. Walker told his therapist that he would like to be able to walk 400 feet; which is the distance from his room to the activity room where bingo is held. This would require increased endurance. Although this is a reasonable goal, it may not be covered by Mr. Walker’s insurance because basic endurance training is not considered a skill that requires a therapist. Therefore, the physical therapist implemented a restorative nursing program for walking with a goal to increase walking distance from 150 feet to 400 feet. After about 3 weeks of working with the restorative aide, Mr. Walker was able to walk to bingo without becoming fatigued. 

If patients should ever need skilled nursing services, the goal of these facilities is to assure that they achieve and maintain the highest possible level of independence. Restorative therapy is one of the many programs designed to do just that. 

Restorative therapy helps residents maintain physical abilities that foster independence and a healthy lifestyle. Our experienced, compassionate professionals at Golden Oaks Village can help residents accomplish the exercise programs and reach the goals set out for them as part of a restorative therapy plan.