Occupational therapy is a type of therapy that helps people who have physical, emotional, or behavioural issues. For example, it can help people with autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and other developmental disabilities.
When To See A Doctor
If you suspect that your child might have a disability, it’s essential to seek the advice of a doctor who is qualified in this area. Your doctor will likely ask about your child’s abilities and needs during regular checkups and then perform an evaluation when there are concerns about particular aspects of the health or development of your child.
If there is a concern about your child’s development or abilities, or if you suspect an underlying medical problem needs attention, then it may be necessary for your doctor to refer you to an occupational therapist (OT). An OT will work closely with you and your doctor to determine what type of intervention would best suit your child’s needs.
Signs Your Child Might Need Occupational Therapy
Playing is not just a hobby for kids; it is an essential part of their development. Playing helps them explore the world, develop critical life skills that allow them to communicate with others, and do things independently one day.
In some cases, children experience difficulties mastering the skills required for independent investigation and navigation of their environment. Problems with fine or gross motor skills, sensory processing, visual-perceptual abilities, and other abilities can cause these developmental delays. In these cases, pediatric occupational therapy can make a big difference.
Here Are A Few Signs Your Child May Need Occupational Therapy:
- If a child does not like certain textures or surfaces, they may have a sensory processing disorder. The occupational therapist can help the child overcome this by finding activities that are not too scary but still provide excitement. It is incredible to watch a professional help a child overcome sensory issues that you thought were never possible as a parent.
- Children with hemiplegia (a disorder characterized by weakness in both sides of the body) often struggle with fine motor skills. If a child does not use both hands together While doing activities, they may need assistance developing these skills. If a child has low vision, poor hearing or hearing loss, or a learning disability, there are other things you can do at home and in the community to help your child develop the skills needed for daily living.
- You must seek medical advice if your child has difficulty dressing or tying their shoes. Fine motor skills need to be improved for a child to learn how to dress themself. However, once these skills are mastered one at a time, you will have a competent child at dressing and undressing. It is best to refrain from assisting them with this process: doing so will only slow down their learning process and make it more difficult for them to succeed independently in the future.
- If children have trouble calming themselves, they may benefit from occupational therapy. When children cannot self-calm, it seems like they are out of control and impossible to deal with. However, this skill will help the entire family live a better life overall. Everyone will benefit from the help that this child will get during OT for children.
- Avoiding eye contact is one of the signs that a child might have autism. It’s not the only way you can tell, but it’s a vital sign that you should not dismiss. If your child avoids eye contact, it’s time to have them assessed by a pediatric occupational therapist.
Purpose Of Occupational Therapy
Occupational therapy aims to help children reach their full potential in all areas of life. For example, an occupational therapist can assist kids in developing the skills that occupy their days, such as eating and getting dressed. By working with an occupational therapist, children with developmental delays can make significant strides socially and emotionally by developing skills such as cooking and attending school.