What is an Occupational Therapist?
An Occupational Therapist (OT) is a healthcare professional who helps people of all ages and abilities to participate in the things they want and need to do in their daily lives. This can include things like self-care, work, leisure, and social activities. Occupational therapists work with people who have a wide range of conditions, including injuries, illnesses, and disabilities. Their training includes an extensive 2-3 year post-grad program that combines psychology, neuroscience, medical conditions, clinical training, anatomy and physiology.
What can Occupational Therapy do for you?
An occupational therapist can help you in a variety of ways, depending on your specific needs and goals. The interventions and strategies used by occupational therapists are backed by robust scientific evidence. Some conditions that occupational therapists address include:
Neurological conditions such as stroke, traumatic brain injury, and Parkinson's disease
Developmental disorders such as Autism and cerebral palsy
Mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD
Geriatric conditions such as dementia and age-related physical decline
Pediatric conditions such as developmental delays, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and sensory processing disorder
Occupational therapists often work as part of a team, which may include other healthcare professionals, educators, and involved family members.
What does it look like to work with an Occupational Therapist?
The role of an occupational therapist includes assessing and evaluating a person's abilities and needs, setting goals with the person and their family, and then providing interventions to help the person achieve their goals. An occupational therapist determines the treatment process by assessing and evaluating the individual's abilities, needs, and goals. The assessment typically includes gathering information about the person's medical history, current physical and mental function, and their daily activities and routines.
The occupational therapist will also monitor your progress, evaluate the effectiveness of the interventions, and make adjustments to the treatment plan as needed. The treatment process is a collaborative effort between the person, their support system, and the occupational therapist, and it is tailored to each person's unique needs and goals. Several follow-up appointments are recommended for best results.