What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational Therapy (OT) is a skilled health, rehabilitation, and educational service that helps people participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations). A child’s main occupations are play and school. OT help address many of the barriers to full engagement in these important roles. OTs are “activity experts” who analyze everyday activities and offer solutions to increase an individual’s ability to participate in occupations.
An OT can help children with a wide variety of needs improve their motor skills and sensory processing. Improving these foundation skills helps a child gain independence in many areas of development including:
- self-care tasks, such as dressing and utensil use
- fine motor skills and improved dexterity
- eye-hand coordination, such as cutting and coloring
- handwriting (print and cursive)
- visual-perceptual tasks, such as puzzles
- sensory processing (how the child responds to touch, sounds, and movement experiences)