April is Occupational Therapy Appreciation Month!
April Showers Bring May Flowers, but it’s also the time to thank all the occupational therapists you know!
Occupational therapists use special equipment to help children with developmental disabilities. Occupational therapists treat injured, ill, or disabled patients through the therapeutic use of everyday activities. People with autism, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, or a variety of other muscular deficiency diseases use occupational therapists, as well as seniors who just experienced a fall, major injury, or have Alzheimer's. The purpose of the occupational therapist is to get whoever is receiving the treatment comfortable with their "occupation," whether that be going to school, returning to work, or just carrying out day to day activities. They help these patients develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living and working. Occupational therapy services typically include:
an individualized evaluation, during which the client/family and occupational therapist determine the person’s goals,
customized intervention to improve the person’s ability to perform daily activities and reach the goals, and
an outcomes evaluation to ensure that the goals are being met and/or make changes to the intervention plan.
Occupational therapists also create customized treatment programs to improve one's ability to perform daily activities, as well as comprehensive home and job site evaluations with adaptation recommendations. To follow up with these implementations they must then consider performance skills, assessments, and treatment by using adaptive equipment recommendations and usage training. One of the most important pieces in all of this is giving guidance to family members and caregivers.
As someone who spends their lives being supportive to others, it's nice to be supported for a change. A word of recognition, a thank you card, or just being extra polite are small ways in which you can show thanks to the person helping your friend, your loved one, or yourself.