What Is Occupational Therapy?

What Is Occupational Therapy

What Is Occupational Therapy?

If you have pain, an injury, a disease, or a condition that makes it difficult for you to move around, take care of yourself, do domestic duties, or engage in activities, this sort of treatment may be able to assist.

You learn to adjust with the help of occupational therapy (OT). You may use it to accomplish any work, school, or home task. If you require tools, sometimes known as assistive equipment, you will learn how to utilize them.

You’ll visit with an occupational therapist, a health practitioner who can suggest strategies to modify your motions so you can complete your work, take care of yourself or your house, participate in sports, or remain active.

What Does Occupational Therapy Mean?

People with physical, psychological, and social issues can receive treatment from occupational therapists to help them enjoy life to the fullest. When dealing with disease, injury, disability, or difficult life situations or events, occupational therapists assist patients in performing the daily tasks they desire and need to accomplish.

Key Features of Occupational Therapy

The term “occupation” is used by occupational therapists to refer to everything we do to take care of ourselves and others, to socialize and have fun, to work and learn, and engage in and contribute to our community and society.

Our jobs are the things we do to fill our days with activities that have value and a purpose. Occupational therapists are professionals in enabling you to enjoy life to the fullest despite difficulties or restrictions and are aware of how crucial these routine tasks are to all of us.

Regarding youngsters, the emphasis will be on encouraging growth, developing independent skills, and facilitating participation in early vocations like play and school. Occupational therapists know the impact that illness, injury, disability, or difficult life circumstances and events can have on people’s capacity to carry out the tasks that are important to them daily. They know how to assist them in achieving their highest possible level of independence and autonomy.

Occupational therapists are professionals in determining how various health issues might impair people’s skills and supporting them in overcoming or navigating the challenges that interfere with their jobs and duties. Occupational therapy emphasizes a person’s abilities, and the client’s preferences are always considered.

Occupational therapy is client-centered and assists people in leading fulfilling and meaningful lives by creating a program responsive to their personalities, circumstances, and requirements.

Who Is an Occupational Therapist?

They receive specialized graduate occupational therapy training. They’re likely to be referred to as OTs. To be certified to practice, they must get a license and succeed on a national exam. Some occupational therapists (OTs) do further training so they may concentrate on certain treatment modalities, such as hand therapy, treating patients with limited eyesight, or dealing with kids or elderly individuals.

Occupational therapy assistants support you with some aspects of your care. They don’t evaluate you or develop your treatment plan. An associate’s degree is required for an OT assistant. OTs and OTAs frequently collaborate with your physician, physical therapist, psychologist, or other medical experts.

What Does an OT Do?

They work with people of various ages, including elders, young adults in their midlife, and preterm newborns. In other words, the therapist examines your performance in any activity or endeavor. Then they devise a strategy to alter your method to make it simpler or less unpleasant.

The OT will evaluate your needs at your initial consultation. They could visit your house or place of business to see how you operate and what adjustments are necessary. They may visit your child’s school if they are working with them. They could advise you to rearrange your furnishings or to purchase a cane or other assistance equipment. You can learn from them how to do errands more effectively.

They will next collaborate with you to develop a therapy plan and establish goals specific to your requirements, limitations, or impairment. Your OT can teach you to modify your motions, develop better hand-eye coordination or motor skills, or do activities in novel ways. Your OT could:

  • Prescribe and instruct you on using wheelchairs or higher toilet seats as assistance devices
  • Teach you new techniques for entering and exiting the shower, tying your shoes, and using your computer.
  • Assist senior citizens in avoiding falls at home or in public places
  • Improve balance in individuals who have had strokes, modify their living environment to minimize accidents, increase muscular strength, or accommodate memory or communication issues
  • Organize your home tools or prescription drugs.
  • Children who misbehave or strike others should receive behavior support.
  • Improve your hand-eye coordination to be able to strike a tennis ball.
  • Practicing your motor skills will help you hold a pencil.

How can Occupational Therapy help you?

  • By assisting you in carrying out the routine tasks that are essential to your well-being, such as self-care, recreation, job, education, social interaction, and sleep and rest
  • By utilizing inventive problem-solving to assist you in leading a richer, more fulfilling life despite being unwell, hurt, disabled, or dealing with difficult situations or occurrences.
  • Enhancing your abilities and independence enables you to engage in your tasks in life fully (child, parent, student, friend, worker, volunteer, etc.)
  • By using a client-centered strategy to ensure that occupational therapy is focused on your preferences, objectives, and top priorities
  • By promoting your access to services and human rights

Who Needs Occupational Therapy?

Anyone who has trouble performing any work could require it. Ask your doctor whether OT can assist you if you have one of these medical issues:

  • Arthritis and chronic pain
  • Stroke
  • Brain injury
  • Joint replacement
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Low vision
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Poor balance
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Mental health or behavior issues

Required Skills for an Occupational Therapist

Although occupational therapists come from various backgrounds, a few essential abilities and traits are ideally suited to the field. For instance, these professionals must possess a strong sense of compassion and empathy to act in the patients’ best interests. In actuality, the desire to improve the lives of others is what attracts many occupational therapists to this field of employment.

To succeed in the industry, occupational therapists must possess several talents and a people-oriented perspective. Some of these are:

  • Strong written and verbal communication skills are necessary for occupational therapists (OTs) to fully comprehend their patients’ requirements and outline the course of therapy. They also need to work closely with other healthcare professionals and be able to document treatment plans and progress accurately.
  • Problem-solving: Since no two situations will ever be the same, skilled occupational therapists (OTs) must have great problem-solving abilities to choose the most appropriate course of action in each special circumstance.
  • Patience and flexibility are necessary since occupational therapy patients might take a long time to regain independence. Good OTs must be understanding and adaptable when handling the high and low moments during this process.

Benefits of Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy Improves an Individual’s Independence

The main advantage of occupational therapy is for this reason. People desire to look for themselves. They desire to require as little assistance as possible to do personal functions like showering, dressing, and using the restroom.

Only occupational therapy (OT) focuses on enhancing certain self-care skills as its main goal. These include the ability to eat, dress, use the restroom, bathe, complete hygiene activities, get into the tub, use the toilet, and perform other important tasks like preparing meals.

In addition to teaching these skills at any stage of recovery, an occupational therapist will also offer compensatory strategies (when needed) to enhance a patient’s capacity to carry out these self-care duties after a change in functional abilities.

Occupational Therapy Improves Strength and Endurance for Functional Tasks

Although typical exercise and stamina (or activity tolerance) activities are common in therapy, occupational therapy is the capacity to analyze the movement or cognitive demands of daily tasks and creatively implement activities and exercises designed to build upon the individual’s current competence to improve daily independence.

Creativity in therapy can improve therapy’s overall efficacy by consistently coming up with new activities that upgrade or raise relevant tasks’ physical or cognitive demands. Additionally, it keeps people interested and challenged.

Occupational Therapy Can Also Work on Functional Cognition and Visual Deficits

Occupational therapists address cognitive issues in light of functional requirements. For example, what mental abilities are needed to manage a daily calendar, pay bills, order things online, and return to work? The goal of occupational therapy is to improve cognition through practicing the skills or employing activities that call for organization, attention, problem-solving, and reasoning.

Following neurological diagnosis, OTs primarily focus on visual processing since it can shed light on more elusive problems. In addition, OTs can assess pre-driving abilities and conduct driving evaluations in the clinic.

Occupational Therapists are great at Caregiver Training

Occupational therapists are not only good at teaching caregivers; we are exceptional at it! We are specialists in assisting people and caregivers in learning how to adapt to change.

The OT will figuratively walk a patient and caregivers through every aspect of daily life, including how much assistance is needed, how to use the kitchen and bathroom safely, and what equipment would be helpful to improve independence, based on the individual’s abilities and precautions. This is especially true in preparation for leaving an acute care or rehab hospital.

Occupational Therapists are Experts in Adaptive Equipment and Home Modifications

Occupational therapists frequently advise their patients to use adaptable equipment. OTs are the go-to therapists to handle these concerns, whether the person is learning how to dress after a hip replacement or back surgery or needs choices to preserve safety in the restroom.

Each year, more and more adaptable goods are available, making it challenging to choose the appropriate ones for certain circumstances. However, you can choose the most suitable and efficient treatment with the aid of an OT.

Occupational therapists can assess possible safety risks within and outside the house (via Home Health therapy or even during an inpatient rehabilitation stay). They can guide the best locations for grab bars, ramps, kitchen equipment arrangement, and bathroom suggestions like tub benches to improve bathing safety.

Occupational Therapists Offer Support

No occupational therapist in practice today has avoided offering support to patients or carers in their current predicament. In addition, they provide families with substantial support in light of the changing circumstances and, in keeping with our historically holistic philosophy, place more emphasis on the complete person than on separate functional aspects.

The concern of occupational therapists is for YOU and how you are adjusting and coping. Instead of merely meeting their clinician-set targets, they want you to achieve YOUR goals.

Occupational Therapy Improves Memory

Occupational therapists may also assist with mental health issues, including memory, despite the misconception that they primarily deal with physical health issues. Older persons frequently experience memory issues, but they are not always present. Working with an occupational therapist can aid in memory preservation or improvement.

Occupational therapists use memory exercises and puzzles to assist patients in improving their memory. Although they cannot treat dementia or Alzheimer’s, occupational therapists can offer advice on how to enhance a person’s quality of life.

The Decrease in Health Risks

Occupational therapists assist persons with various difficulties in carrying out their regular activities. One of the fundamental duties of occupational therapy is assessing health risks, such as the possibility of harm being done and how cognitive problems may affect the safety of carrying out everyday tasks. In addition, occupational therapists support the adoption of healthy routines and habits into everyday life while promoting participation in social activities.

Recovery and Social Inclusion

Occupational therapists teach various skills, including social inclusion, caring, time management, and stress management. In addition, the recovery of a person’s mental health and social involvement in society require occupational help for those who find it difficult to engage in simple social activities. Allow people to participate in society includes boosting their self-assurance, including them in social organizations, and even preparing them for jobs or training.


The therapists at Safe Hands HHC prioritize maintaining your integrity. Safe Hands guarantee the greatest occupational therapy services in Michigan. By delivering highly trained, competent, and experienced therapists, Safe Hands HHC guarantees the quality of its occupational therapy services. Patients can maintain a healthy lifestyle with the help of Safe Hands HHC’s experts in adult occupational therapy.

For Assistance and Services Visit: www.SafeHandsHHC.com

Leave A Reply

Skip to content