Occupational therapy (OT) focuses on helping people with a physical, sensory or cognitive disability be as independent as possible in all areas of their lives. OT can help children with various needs improve their cognitive, physical, sensory and motor skills and enhance their self-esteem, independence and sense of accomplishment. A child’s main job is playing and learning, and Occupational Therapists can evaluate their skills for playing, school performance and daily activities and compare them with what is developmentally appropriate for that age group.
Occupational Therapists work with children in their homes, at nursery, school and in clinic settings. They work with children and their families in relation to difficulties with play, social interaction, reaching developmental milestones, self care activities and mobility. Rehab Jigsaw OTs work with children and young people themselves, their parents, families and school staff to empower them with the skills necessary to support them to reach their very best potential.
In working with children, Occupational Therapists might:
- Evaluate a child’s need for specialised equipment, such as wheelchairs, seating or postural support, bathing / showering equipment, sleep systems, dressing devices or communication aids
- Assess and advise on moving and handling to ensure the safety of the child and their family / carers
- Assess children with complex physical needs for home adaptations such as ramps, wheelchair access, appropriate bathing / showering facilities, therapy rooms and ceiling track hoists
- Provide property advice where a family is considering moving home as their current home is not meeting their child’s needs
- Work with schools and specialist care facilities regarding environmental adaptations
- Help children work on their functional abilities including fine motor skills and hand-eye co-ordination to improve participation in play and school
- Help children with severe developmental delays learn basic tasks such as bathing, getting dressed, brushing their teeth and feeding themselves
- Teach children with physical disabilities the coordination skills needed to feed themselves, use a computer or increase the speed and legibility of their handwriting
- Work with children who have sensory and attentional issues to improve focus and social skills
Rehab Jigsaw has Occupational Therapists throughout the UK, many of whom are experienced working with both younger children and adolescents. Rehab Jigsaw accepts referrals from a variety of people including parents, schools, case managers, charities and other health professionals. As Occupational Therapists specialise in different areas of work, we are very happy to discuss any potential referral to ensure that we have the right Occupational Therapist with the skills and experience to offer the expertise required.