Occupational therapy (OT) is a branch of health care that helps people of all ages who have physical, sensory, or cognitive problems. OT can help them regain independence in all areas of their lives.
Occupational therapists help with barriers that affect a person's emotional, social, and physical needs. To do this, they use everyday activities, exercises, and other therapies.
OT helps kids play, improves their school performance, and aids their daily activities. It also boosts their self-esteem and sense of accomplishment. With OT, kids can:
- Develop fine motor skills so they can grasp and release toys and develop good handwriting or computer skills.
- Improve eye–hand coordination so they can play and do needed school skills such as bat a ball and copy from a blackboard.
- Master basic life skills such as bathing, getting dressed, brushing teeth, and self-feeding.
- Learn positive behaviors and social skills by practicing how they manage frustration and anger.
- Get special equipment to help build their independence. These include wheelchairs, splints, bathing equipment, dressing devices, and communication aids.
Occupational therapy helps with:
- fine motor skills (small-muscle movements made with the hands, fingers, and toes, such as grasping)
- visual-perceptual skills
- cognitive (thinking) skills
- sensory-processing problems
If a child needs support to develop optimally, occupational therapy can help. ... For children with developmental delays or a known physical or mental condition associated with a high probability of delays, occupational therapy can help improve their motor, cognitive, sensory processing, communication, and play skills.