Is a child’s play, self care, and all their daily learning tasks.
Uses activities to improve the child’s ability to function in daily life, particularly with motor, perceptual and daily living skills.
“Occupational therapy is a client-centred health 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 working with people and communities to enhance their ability to engage in the occupations they want to, need to, or are expected to do, or by modifying the occupation or the environment to better support their occupational engagement.”(WFOT, 2010, p.1)
Occupational Therapists work with children, adolescents and their families to maximise a child’s development. Therapy programs assist children to participate in preschool, school and home activities enhancing their quality of life.
Occupational Therapy involves skilled assessment, planning and intervention to help individuals achieve independence in all aspects of their lives. It is through an individual’s participation and performance in activities and roles that are of value to them that their health, well being and sense of purpose and meaning are shaped.
Services may be provided to children and adolescents with a range of conditions which may include:
Developmental areas and skills that may warrant a referral to OT for a child include:
Therapy activities are designed to be fun and interactive thus enabling children to strive for their full potential regarding age appropriate developmental milestones. Prescribing equipment and task/environmental modification may also form part of the child’s therapy plan. Occupational Therapists work in collaboration with key parties, including family, teacher and child, to achieve desired goals.
Areas of development that an Occupational Therapist can assist adolescents with include:
For additional information on Occupational Therapy please refer to the following videos:
University of Brighton describe the diversity and depth of Occupational Therapy practice. If you are solely interested in a paediatric example please fast forward to 1min 50 secs.
For additional examples of Paediatric Occupational Therapy practice across different developmental areas.