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  • One-on-one rehabilitation with state-of-the-art equipment

    Sharon Hospital provides hands-on rehabilitative care from physical, occupational and speech therapists who are dedicated to helping patients return to their maximum function quickly and effectively. Our team of therapists provides individualized:

    • Physical therapy/sports therapy
    • Occupational therapy
    • Speech and language pathology

    Physical therapy and sports medicine

  • Make an Appointment

    Rehabilitation Services:
    (860) 364-4065

    TTY/Accessibility:
    (800) 842-9710

The physical therapists at Sharon Hospital have years of experience in treating patients of all ages with a wide range of diagnoses. Our therapists have extensive training in manual therapy and continue to enhance their skills through education and inservicing programs.

Patients commonly seek physical rehabilitation at Sharon Hospital for the following conditions:

  • Sports injuries (knee and shoulder injuries, pre- and post-operative care)
  • Arthritis (joint replacements)
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Osteoporosis
  • Women's health conditions (pregnancy, pelvic floor dysfunction)
  • Neurological impairments (stroke, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, Lyme disease, traumatic brain injury)
  • Balance disorders
  • Amputations (orthotic and prosthetic training)
  • Pediatric conditions
  • Cancer

Sharon Hospital physical therapists use a range of treatment approaches based on your unique needs.

Manual therapy
The integrated use of soft tissue and joint mobilization combined with neuromuscular rehabilitation and therapeutic exercise to effectively evaluate, treat and restore function to the injured area (joint).

Vestibular therapy
You may benefit from a vestibular evaluation and rehabilitation if you are experiencing dizziness or a balance disorder. You might seek vestibular rehabilitation if you commonly experience room-spinning dizziness, sensations similar to walking on a boat, exaggerated movements when you move your head or difficulty reading signs while walking.

Conditions we treat:

  • Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
  • Central dizziness
  • Meniere's disease
  • Disequilibrium
  • Vestibulopathy
  • Cervical dizziness

Schorth Scoliosis Therapy
Created in Germany, this treatment focuses on your awareness of the curve of the spine, optimizing postural alignment throughout the day and developing individualized exercise programs.

Graston Technique®
This unique, evidence-based form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization enables clinicians to effectively address scar tissue, fascial restrictions and range of motion through comprehensive training, resulting in improved patient outcomes.

Mackenzie Method®
This assessment and treatment for mechanical dysfunction of joints, including the back and neck, teaches optimal posture and movement patterns, which will empower you to be in control of your own symptom management and can reduce dependency on medical intervention.

Occupational therapy

Occupational therapists help people restore their ability to perform activities of daily living that may have become impaired due to disability, injury or illness. Occupational therapy is unique to each individual and his or her environment. People of varying ages receive occupational therapy to help them participate in daily activities. A person needing occupational therapy could be facing change related to aging, having difficulties performing tasks in school, or experiencing or coping with an illness. 

Patients who benefit from occupational therapy may have one of the following conditions:

  • Cancer
  • Stroke
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Other neurological conditions (Lyme disease, Guillain-Barré)
  • Orthopedic injuries of the shoulder, elbow, wrist or hand
  • Hand therapy
  • Pediatric conditions (developmental, sensory integration)
  • Arthritis
  • Amputations of the upper extremity

Occupational therapists are instrumental in performing safety evaluations, recommending appropriate adaptive equipment and providing strategies to ensure your safety while developing and maintaining independence within your home environment. Your therapist's goal is to customize your treatment to improve your ability to perform the daily activities that are important to you. During therapy, your therapist will guide you, your family and your caregiver to help ensure a successful outcome. 

LSVT BIG.® This protocol was developed specifically to address the unique movement impairments for people with Parkinson's disease. It is both intensive and complex, with many repetitions of core movements that are used in daily living. Treatment is administered in 16 sessions over a single month.

Speech and language pathology for children

Children who require speech therapy services may have developmental speech/language delays, autism/PDD/Asperger's syndrome, Down syndrome, brain injury, cleft palate, cerebral palsy, learning disorders or seizure disorders.

Communication therapy
We'll complete an evaluation to determine how your child understands and expresses language. An individualized therapy plan is created with you and your child to help improve his or her communication skills. Common communication disorders in children include:

  • Articulation/phonological disorders, characterized by a difficulty producing sounds correctly. Some speech errors are developmentally appropriate. Age-related speech expectations will be used to determine if a speech or phonological disorder is present.
  • Childhood apraxia of speech, which is difficulty saying sounds, syllables and words that is not due to muscle weakness or paralysis. Your child knows what he or she wants to say, but his/her brain has difficulty coordinating the muscle movements necessary to say those words.
  • Language disorders are characterized by difficulty understanding or using language (both oral and written) to communicate thoughts, ideas and feelings.
  • Stuttering is a lack of fluency in your child's speech, which can translate into part or whole word repetitions, prolongations or sound blocks while speaking. This usually starts in childhood and can last into adulthood.

Feeding and swallowing therapy
If your child has difficulty coordinating suck/swallow/breathe, transitioning between textures, chewing, and/or swallowing, he or she may have a feeding disorder. Therapy could focus on improving muscle strength or tongue movement in order to develop age-appropriate sucking, drinking and chewing abilities. Foods and liquids with different textures may be trialed or recommended to ensure safe swallowing and expand food repertoire.

Speech and language pathology for adults

Adults who require speech therapy services typically have a history of stroke, acquired brain injury, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson's disease, dementia or other neurological disorders, head and neck cancers, or vocal pathology.

Communication therapy
After your evaluation, we will create an individualized therapy plan to help improve your communication skills. Common communication disorders in adults include:

  • Aphasia, which is difficulty with speaking, understanding spoken language, reading comprehension and/or written language. This includes difficulty with word retrieval. Therapy is centered on your wants and needs, and often involves your family and caregiver to help with communication outside of the therapy setting.
  • Apraxia, a neurological disorder characterized by difficulty planning the motor movements necessary for speech. Therapy focuses on retraining and practicing the correct speech movements for sounds. PROMPT is a therapy technique that may be used to help improve your ability to speak.
  • Dysarthria, which arises when the muscles of the mouth, face and respiratory system are weak, move slowly, are uncoordinated or will not move at all. Therapy focuses on the strength and coordination of the speech subsystems (respiration, phonation, articulation and resonance) to improve communication, in addition to learning strategies to increase speech clarity.
  • Cognitive disorders, typically seen with acquired brain injury or neurological disorders. They include difficulty initiating, planning, organizing and evaluating tasks; memory deficits; difficulty with orientation; and trouble with attention. Therapy focuses on improving your ability to independently complete vocational, household or educational tasks.
  • Voice disorders that can arise from vocal nodules, paralysis, vocal cord bowing, vocal cord tension and/or vocal abuse. With voice disorders, the voice may sound hoarse, breathy or harsh. Therapy focuses on improving your vocal hygiene and learning to use your voice more effectively.

LSVT – LOUD® is an intense speech therapy for patients with Parkinson's disease that targets vocal loudness through a structured program occurring in 16 sessions over one month. The end goal of therapy is to generalize gains into functional communication tasks.

Swallowing therapy
Dysphagia is difficulty with chewing or swallowing. Clinical swallowing assessments and therapy are available at Sharon Hospital depending on the cause, symptoms and type of swallowing problem you are experiencing. An exercise program, specific strategies or postures, or specific diets may be recommended.

To evaluate your condition, you may be asked to complete a modified barium swallow/videofluoroscopic swallow study (VFSS):

  • Assesses the swallowing mechanism using X-ray
  • Performed by both the radiologist and the speech pathologist
  • Records X-ray images of the passage of food from the mouth through the throat, and into the esophagus
  • Enables detection of abnormalities in the swallowing mechanism and signs of aspiration

Stroke Support Group
If you or a loved one has had a stroke, this group offers the opportunity to meet with others who share the same challenges as you, learn coping strategies, and listen and learn through group discussions about adjustments, communication and social activities. The group meets every Friday at 2 pm. Please call (860) 364-4065 for more information.

Volunteers

We encourage people interested in any of the therapy fields to spend some time volunteering in our department and shadowing our therapists. This is a great opportunity to observe current techniques and also experience patient care.

Students

Sharon Hospital acts as a clinical site for several nearby colleges for physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech pathology in order for students to complete clinical affiliations required for a degree.

Rehabilitation patients should park in the front parking lot of the hospital and enter through the main entrance. Once you are inside the hospital, the receptionist will direct you to our department.

Meet Our Team

Director:

Melissa Braislin, MS, CCC-SLP
(860) 364-4446

Physical therapy:

Emelie Gold, PT, DPT

Jeff Litishin, PT, DPT

Drew Matsen, PT, DPT, OSC, CSCS

Carola Monroe, PT, Graston Technique® Certified

Robin Mostachetti, MS, PT

Mark Pillsbury, PT, DPT, AIB-CVR

Gregory Sukow, MSPT

Ellen Walker, PT, DPT, CFMT, Graston® Technique Certified

Occupational therapy: 

Norman Askinazi, MA, OTR|L

Jessica Bannerman, OTR|L

Amanda Kragh, OTR|L

Mindy Markowitz, OTR|L

Speech therapy:

Melissa Braislin, MS, CCC-SLP, Department Manager

Katherine Askinazi, MA, CCC-SLP

Katja Schultz, MA, CCC-SLP

Haley Wheeler, MA, CCC-SLP

Office staff:

Ginny Billups, Rehabilitation Technician

Dale Gardiner, Receptionist

Erin Rafferty, Receptionist

Rehabilitation at Sharon Hospital: Frequently Asked Questions

What should I expect from therapy?
You will receive a comprehensive evaluation from a licensed therapist. Your therapist's assessment, along with your personal objectives, will determine appropriate goals and a treatment plan that is right for you. Once the treatment plan has been established, you will work with your therapist to reach those goals. It is your responsibility to perform the prescribed home exercise program in order to maximize your recovery.

What should I bring with me to my first therapy appointment?
Please arrive at your appointment 15 minutes early in order to complete the appropriate paperwork. In order to receive therapy, you must have a prescription from your physician. You will also need to bring your insurance card(s) with you.

What should I wear to therapy?
Wear appropriate loose-fitting clothing. You may want to bring shorts/sweats/T-shirt to change into.

Will my therapy be covered by my insurance?
Therapy is usually covered either in part or full by most major insurance plans. The hospital will bill your insurance company directly at the end of each month. Co-payments will be due at the time of service. You may want to call your insurance company and review your coverage prior to treatment.

What can I do at home in conjunction with therapy to make me feel better?

  • Discuss with your therapist how you might modify the activities that cause your pain. They may be contributing to your inflammatory or degenerative process.
  • Try to determine what activity is causing your symptoms and let your therapist know. Your therapist can help you find alternative ways of doing things.
  • Apply ice to an acute/new injury in 15-minute intervals, with at least 60 minutes between each interval, several times a day.
  • Heat can be used for stiffness and achiness as long as it is not applied to a new or acute injury.
  • Walking is beneficial, even if it is just for 15 minutes a couple of times a day, as long as the activity does not increase your symptoms.
  • Continue to do your home program provided by your therapist and use proper body mechanics.
  • Drink plenty of water to help reduce soreness. We typically recommend that you drink eight tall glasses of water every day, and more on therapy days.
  • Work on relaxation techniques, as some pain may be increased by muscle tension and stress.

Location Information

Sharon Hospital
Rehabilitation Services
50 Hospital Hill Road
Sharon, CT 06069

Phone: (860) 364-4065
TTY/Accessibility: (800) 842-9710
Fax: (860) 364-4466

location markerDirections

Hours:
Monday: 7am - 7pm; Tuesday: 7am - 8pm; Wednesday: 7am - 6pm; 
Thursday: 7am - 8pm; Friday 7am - 5pm; Friday: 7am - 5pm