April is “National Occupational Therapy Month”, a time dedicated to raising awareness about the benefits of occupational therapy and celebrating the professionals who provide it.
Occupational Therapists’ focus on helping individuals develop, and maintain the skills needed for functional daily living, independence, and quality of life.
For children, the goal of OT is to enhance development, minimize the potential for delays, and increase a child’s self esteem & sense of accomplishment so they can thrive in their main ‘occupation’: playing & learning.
For adults, occupational therapy focuses upon Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), such as bathing/grooming/toileting/food preparation/etc, and Functional Cognition: the thinking and processing skills needed to accomplish complex everyday activities such as household & financial management, medication management, chores, volunteer activities, driving, and work.
Occupational Therapists design therapeutic interventions to target common areas of focus, such as cognitive skills, visual-motor integration, sensorimotor/fine/gross motor skills, self-care and sufficiency tasks, self regulation, and developmental play/social skills.
Individuals of all ages, and ranges of availability, can benefit from OT.
Refer to the following resources for checklists, and hallmark signs, for development from 0-7+.
[Art by Amanda Lee Lettering]