Out of Knowhere
Occupational therapy is as a profession concerned with promoting health and well being through occupation. The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate in the activities of everyday life. Occupational therapists achieve this outcome by enabling people to do things that will enhance their ability to participate or by modifying the environment to better support participation. Occupational therapists use careful analysis of physical, environmental, psychosocial, mental, spiritual, political and cultural factors to identify barriers to occupation. Occupational therapy draws from the fields of medicine, psychology, sociology, anthropology, and many other disciplines in developing its knowledge base.
An Occupational Therapist will work with individuals of all ages to promote independence in areas of self-care, work and leisure activities. A therapist will work with orthopedic, neurological and any diagnosis which effects and individual’s ability to maximize their ability to perform every day activities. Some diagnosis include stroke, joint replacement, arthritis, and cardiac conditions.
Self-care Evaluation and Training: A therapist will work with patients to teach techniques and use of adaptive devices to improve a person’s ability in the areas of bathing, grooming, dressing, feeding, getting in/out of bathtub, on/off toilet and all other patient specific self-care tasks
Homemaking Evaluation and Training: An OT will assess one’s ability to perform all homemaking tasks including cooking, cleaning, laundry, making bed etc. Training involves alternate ways of performing the tasks with possible adaptive equipment or home modifications.
Joint Protection/Energy Conservation Technique Training: A therapist will work with a cardiac patient or other diagnosis which causes fatigue as well as the arthritic patient to teach techniques which conserve energy and/or protect further damage to joints while performing every day activities
Home Assessment: An occupational therapist can go into the home and suggest home modifications to enable one to function more independently and safely within their environment. This can include grab bars, ramps, adaptive equipment as well as simple safety techniques to prevent falls/danger in home.
Strengthening/Conditioning/Endurance: The therapist will work on individuals to maximize their overall strength to increase their ability to perform everyday tasks. This may include weights, therapeutic modalities as well as functional performance.
Functional Transfer Training: An OT will teach a patient how to safely perform every day transfers including getting in/out of tub, on/off toilet, in/out of bed, on/off a chair and in/out of a car.
Fine/Gross Motor Coordination: Therapy may involve the use of various tasks to increase a person’s coordination. Fine motor task include the use of small muscles and gross motor skills include the use of larger muscles.
Hand Therapy: Therapist will work on all hand injuries, orthopedic or neurological problems that affect the use of the hands to restore maximum function. Therapy may involve splinting as well as specific techniques, modalities to restore function.
Functional Balance Training: An OT will address balance issues that interfere with a person’s ability to perform functional daily tasks adequately and safely.
Cognitive/Perceptual Skills: In Occupational therapy a therapist will assess if there are cognitive or perceptual issues that interfere with the individual’s ability to perform everyday tasks. Interventions may include cognitive and perceptual retraining or teach compensatory techniques in order to function to one’s maximal potential.
Caregiver Training: A person may need assistance from a caregiver when they can no longer care for themselves. An OT will train the caregiver the proper techniques of transferring and working with the disabled safely while also protecting their own bodies.
Wellness and Recovery: A therapist will establish a proper program to promote wellness at home or in the clinic taking into account all of your specific needs including effects of aging, medication, blood pressure, and other conditions that need to be considered.
Wheelchair Assessment: The Occupational Therapist will evaluate and make recommendations for acquisition of an appropriate wheelchair to provide the individual with maximum comfort and functional ability