April is designated as Occupational Therapy Month, helping raise awareness of what occupational therapy is and who can benefit from this service.
When a health situation interferes with a person’s ability to perform daily tasks, occupational therapists and certified occupational therapy assistants can answer the “Now what?” question. They help people who are recovering from an injury, illness or other health condition re-learn or improve their performance of activities that are part of their daily routines. They also serve the needs of pediatric patients from birth on to help them meet physical development milestones.
Occupational therapy staff help patients live life to their fullest potential, regardless of health or disability status. An occupational therapist can help patients:
- Achieve goals: For example, children with a developmental delay or disability can gain skills needed to move from their schooling days to a more independent life as an adult.
- Focus on health: They can help you stay healthy and productive while managing a medical condition.
- Rebuild independence: Therapists may suggest devices that will help you with personal care after a stroke.
- Take part in everyday activities: They help you develop life skills such as driving, communicating, walking and other activities that keep you engaged in the community.
Occupational therapists use a holistic approach to perform services designed to assist patients working toward these life improvements.
- Personalized evaluation: Work with you, your family and your doctor to determine goals.
- Intervention: Customize a plan to improve your ability to perform activities of daily living.
- Outcomes evaluation: Make sure goals are met and adjust your plan if necessary.
For more information on Occupational Therapy Month, visit The American Occupational Therapy Association.