Many people have heard of occupational therapy but won’t know what it actually does or who it is for. Read our guide to learn more about it and how you can access it for yourself or someone you know.
What does an occupational therapist do?
Occupational therapists treat injured, ill, or disabled patients through the therapeutic use of everyday activities. This assists patients to develop, recover and improve themselves, in addition to maintaining the skills needed for daily living and working. The term ‘occupation’ means general practical pursuits that occur in day-to-day living such as washing, dressing, leisure or work; in fact, anything that helps people live as independently as possible.
Some may use a range of exercises to help improve physical health, or maybe organise living aids to enable patients to get around their home more easily. They work as part of a team effort to help people who are, for instance, recovering from a stroke, to regain strength and in particular, get their confidence back. In this case, they would also likely be involved with speech difficulties and finding ways to help improve communication.
The therapists can often cover different aspects of treatment from physical health to mental health and wellbeing. They work in various settings such as social care, health organisations, schools and more recently, will also be involved in working with asylum seekers or refugees.
They provide a valued service to help bridge the gap between medical care (or other organisational dependency) and being able to live as self-sufficiently as one can, thus relieving the pressure from the NHS and other acute groups.
Who needs it?
There are a wide range of people who can benefit from occupational therapy including:
v Dementia patients
v Stroke victims
v Learning disabled
v Accident recovery
v Covid-19 victims
What are the benefits for Older Adults?
- Can help movement range
- Boosts memory & cognitive skills
- Helps coping with chronic pain
- Can stimulate conversation and memory
- Improve communication
- Enable independent living
How can I get it?
You can get occupational therapy through the NHS or your local GP, however there is likely to be a waiting list.
Alternatively, you can get Let’s Talk OT packs as downloadable planned sessions from our website. These are designed by professional occupational therapists and cover a wide range of activities and themes designed to encourage conversation and movement.
The packs are especially good for anyone living at home who would benefit from structured help to help get talking and to stimulate the senses. Each pack is themed and includes great ideas to improve conversation along with interesting activities to enjoy. These can include art projects, poetry and video links.
These sessions can be done with a family member or carer and at a time that suits you. No travelling or appointments to keep and with the minimum of equipment.
Why wait? Download your Let’s Talk session today and enjoy a better tomorrow.