Physical Disability

A physical disability is a limitation on a person's physical functioning, mobility, dexterity or stamina. There are many different types of physical disabilities. A physical disability may be temporary, long-term, or permanent. Whether you were born with a disability, or have experienced the disability because to injury or illness later in life, being physically disabled can be mentally challenging. A physical disability sometimes leads to social isolation as it may prevent some people from leaving the house, or experiencing things they were previously able to do. It may also cause a loss of independence, especially if the disability requires the care others. This may lead to feelings of helplessness and depression. If you are experiencing a physical disability, particularly if you are struggling with negative emotions, talking with a qualified mental health professional may be an important part of your treatment plan. Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s physical disability experts today.

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I have been working with individuals with disabilities for the past six years. I specialized in rehabilitation psychology during my postdoctoral fellowship. In other words, I had solid training and have had some great teachers who have helped me understand how to provide therapy that is specifically disability-affirmative. My approach is flexible and client-centered, which means this might be the only place in your life where you don't have to be the one to adapt.

— Nina Tilka, Clinical Psychologist in Costa Mesa, CA

Coping with partial hearing loss, tinnitus, or chronic health challenges lead to fatigue and overwhelm. Irritation sets in and others don't seem to fully understand you. I will work with you to feel empowered and discover coping strategies to let you lead the life you desire.

— Patrick Tully, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA
 

We do not live in an accessible world, and this can be incredibly frustrating and exhausting. You are not the problem; ableism is the problem.

— Christina (Christy) Reichert, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Vancouver, WA

As a person with a disability I can lend a different approach and perspective. In a world where you sometimes feel overwhelmed you sometimes need to have therapist that not only is trained to help you but has personal understanding of this complex issue. I have had multiple sclerosis for 18 years and have had my own journey and learning experience. I offer online therapy to assist clients who may experience difficulty making face to face appointments.

— Heather Emerich, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Denver, CO

Disability can vastly change the way we interact with our world and how the world interacts with us. I understand this at a personal level. As a person with a disability, I understand that the world we live in wasn't built for my needs and yet I will make it work. In therapy we can explore disability, disability identity, and coping with the able-world around us. More importantly, we can explore what you want to do with your life and how to do it - barriers and all.

— Guy Smith, Counselor in Fitchburg, WI

I love working with folks who have been disabled for years or are navigating a "new operations manual" for their body. My approach usually involves working to make life more accessible or accommodating while also embracing yourself with compassion by unlearning internalized ableism or other messages about what bodies "should" be able to do. There's also lots of space for grieving the body that you could've had or used to have.

— Ruth Spalding, Clinical Social Worker
 

Director of Psychology, Neuropsychology & Behavioral Medicine Encompass Health Rehab Hospital, with current privileges. O’Donnell, P. J. (2013). Psychological Effects of a Strength-Based Intervention Among Inpatients in Rehabilitation for Pain and Disability. (Doctoral dissertation). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses. ISBN: 978-1-303-53639-7

— Peter O'Donnell, Psychologist in Bellefonte, PA

I have unique training in working with clients with physical disabilities, and my research focuses on physical disability concerns. I take "social model" and "disability justice model" perspectives of disability, which suggest that the social and physical environments disable people with physical impairments.

— Kristin Conover, Psychologist in Los Angeles, CA
 

As someone with a physical disability, I am attuned to some of the special issues that confront PWD as we navigate the world: discrimination, self-doubt and self-blame, internalization of stigma, low expectations, and the fetishization of disability.

— Carey McIntosh, Clinical Trainee in Riverside, CA

I have personal experience with the visually impaired/blind community and professional experience as a paraprofessional working with those who dealt with physical disabilities in addition to mental health concerns. I also have experience with the unique challenges caregiving presents to the family system when physical disability is present.

— Melissa Huff, Therapist in Fort Smith, AR
 

Learning to live with disability, be it something you recently discovered or that you have worked with your whole life, can take a lot of energy and time consuming. We will work together to process grief and reach acceptance and move into a comfortable living place.

— Shannon Barnes, Licensed Professional Counselor Associate

I help people figure out life again after an injury, medical change, diagnosis, or disability. As a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, my training and experience has offered me unique insight in helping people with disabilities or medical conditions thrive.

— Ashley Jopling, Professional Counselor Associate in Portland, OR