What is an Occupational Therapist
For those who are at a disadvantage in life, an occupational therapist is hugely beneficial in many ways. When asking ` what is an occupational therapist' there are a number of areas to be covered, this is because they cover a wide range of people and help with various activities.
What does an occupational therapist do?
The first part of answering `what is an occupation therapist?' is the understanding of what one does. An occupational therapist is also known simply in the profession as OT, is a qualified worker trained in occupational therapy. Their main aim is to help provide patients and clients with help and support in order for them to be able to lead as full and independent life as possible. This is done through the undertaking of various purposeful activities and interventions which can improve and sustain independence, promote health and prevent and aid injury and disability.
Who do they work with?
A part of `what is an occupational therapist?' are the patients they work with. Therapists work with all age ranges from children to the elderly.
Day to day help
A big part of `what is an occupational therapist?' is the day to day help in which they provide their patients; they help with day to day activities without ever taking away the patients independence. Daily tasks such as cooking meals for breakfast, lunch and tea, eating, cooking and grooming, grooming can involve tasks such as shaving and washing and the brushing of teeth. Therapists can also provide help with using computers for various tasks.
Occupational therapists can come up with activities to help patients improve different skills such as movement and memory improvement. Activities such as pottery and painting to improve the use of the fingers, hands and shoulders as-well improving all round hand-eye coordination. Exercises to improve strength and dexterity and visual activities are used as part of the day to day routine.
Computers are also used as part of activities, programs and games to help and improve:
- Problem solving
- Abstract reasoning
- Decision making
Making these tasks and fun as possible as-well as education and informative is important to keep the patient interested, which is why occupational therapists have a big say in the design and application of new activities.
A thing a lot of people don`t know when asking `what is an occupation therapist?' is the role in which therapists play in the design and production of equipment for patients. Therapists working one to one on a daily basis can come up with and make equipment that can be applied to a patient's home or place of work. Equipment can include the design of orthotics to aid patients in walking or objects to help with eating and dressing. Things such as stair lifts and wheelchair ramps can be recommended by therapists if needed by the patient.
They can also design and develop computer aided equipment that can teach patients that have limitations how to communicate better with other people.