Childrens occupational therapy is for children who are unique and different. Dealing with children who have no disabilities and are able to function normally is hard; parents can attest to that. How about children with disabilities? How will they get the love and care they deserve? Should they distance themselves from society for being different?
There are different types of therapy, including childrens occupational therapy. This kind of treatment allows children with disabilities to improve their motor, cognitive, and social skills. In this type of therapy, a pediatric occupational therapist is the one who trains the children to be more physically, mentally and socially active.
What Is Childrens Occupational Therapy?
In the general description, Occupational Therapy is a field of medicine that aids patients, especially children with sensory, physical, or mental issues. From children’s perspective, their occupation includes being productive, such as going to a nursery or school, and having time for play and leisure. The therapy increases their academic performance and improves their productivity with daily activities.
After undergoing the treatment, the children will develop a strong sense of achievement and self-worth. The therapy enables a child to engage in fun learning activities to help them improve their health, skills and how they should care for themselves. This kind of approach will not only enhance their mental ability but also their physical development and recovery.
Some of the tasks a pediatric occupational therapist gives to children are the following:
- Put a puzzle together
- Use a hole punch to create designs on paper
- Use tweezers to pick up small objects, such as buttons or beads
- Drop coins into a piggy bank
- Tear paper into strips
Who Are Advised To Undergo Occupational Therapy?
This treatment is advisable to take for children who have these:
- Sensory processing disorders
- Learning problems
- Developmental delays
- Spina bifida
- Multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, and other chronic illnesses
- Severe hand injuries
- Mental health or behavioural problems
- Post-surgical conditions
- Birth injuries or congenital disabilities
- Traumatic injuries to the brain or spinal cord
- Broken bones or other orthopedic injuries
- Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Traumatic amputations
How Effective is this Therapy for Children?
Childrens occupational therapy has proven itself effective countless times, and there is evidence supporting the effectiveness of OT intervention in the school system and between children-parent relationships.
Based on a study conducted at Southern Ontrario, 89% of students stated that Childrens occupational therapy program improved their capacity to study, and 80% said that this therapy solved problems that interfered with a child’s ability to benefit from education. This occupational therapy could convey medical, physical, and developmental information in educationally relevant terms, according to 82% of teachers. In addition, over 60% of teachers said that this kind of occupational therapy might help with motor skills, psychosocial skills, assessing student needs, daily living skills, sensorimotor abilities, equipment needs, and maintaining parent participation.
What Are The Benefits Of This Treatment?
This type of occupational therapy comes with the following benefits for children:
- Improve their fine motor abilities so they can grasp and release toys and learn how to write clearly or use a computer.
- Enhance their eye-hand coordination so they can play and perform necessary school tasks, like batting a ball and copying from a blackboard.
- Learn how to take a bath, dress themselves, brush their teeth, and eat alone.
- Practice controlling their annoyance and anger to develop constructive habits and social skills.
- Learn how to be independent.
What Does A Pediatric Occupational Therapist Do?
Therapy will only be successful with a therapist. Their role as a therapist is very crucial to the progress of the children. Moreover, they are the ones who guide and administer the tasks for children in order for them to improve.
Pediatric occupational therapists are the ones who talk and explain to parents the essence of occupational therapy and why their child needs to be in one. They help and encourage children as young as possible to develop a sense of gratitude for what it means to live despite being different from others.
An occupational therapist needs to have a master’s degree from an authorised occupational therapy program in addition to a bachelor’s degree of four years in a relevant subject (such as psychology, biology, and health science). They work in a variety of settings, such as private practices, hospitals, schools, rehabilitation institutions, pediatrician offices and mental health facilities. A pediatric occupational therapist who is licensed and specialises in pediatrics collaborates with the child’s family to create goals that maximise the child’s functional abilities and daily living skills.
Every kid who is sent to the department undergoes an individual evaluation to determine any disabilities or restrictions that affect their ability to function. Together with the child and family, a therapy plan is created with specific objectives.
Childrens occupational therapy is proven helpful for children who have disabilities they get on or after birth. This kind of therapy offers an incredible impact on children’s sensorimotor and cognitive abilities.
Moreover, pediatric occupational therapists encourage both parents and children to step out of their comfort zone and not be afraid to seek treatment and help since it is necessary for them to improve their child’s condition.