Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy is a type of health care that helps to solve the problems that interfere with a person’s ability to do the things that are important to them – everyday things like:

  • Self-care – getting dressed, eating, moving around the house,
  • Being productive – going to work or school, participating in the community, and
  • Leisure activities – sports, gardening, social activities.

Occupational therapy can also prevent a problem or minimize its effects. Often called OTs, Occupational Therapists are the primary providers of occupational therapy services. OTs are:

  • university educated professionals that apply their specialized knowledge and skills to recommend a course of preventive or corrective action that will help people lead more productive and satisfying lives,
  • trained to understand not only the medical and physical limitations of a disability or injury, but also the psychosocial factors that affect the functioning of the whole person
  • occupational therapists must be registered provincially to practice legally in Canada.

© Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists

Occupational Therapists, Autism Spectrum Disorder and Sensory Integration:

Most of us unconsciously learn to combine our senses (sight, sound, smell, touch, taste, balance, body in space) to make sense of our environment. Children with autism have trouble learning to do this. Consequently, their play schemes are limited to the few habitual manners they use when interacting with the world. Occupational therapists use sensory integration therapy to help a child with autism play like other children. Sensory integration therapy involves placing a child in a room specifically designed to stimulate and challenge all the senses. During the session, the therapist works closely with the child to encourage movement within the room.

© Autism Canada

Information sheets
Developing a pencil grip
Hand preference
Prewriting skillsPencil pressure
In-hand manipulation
Low muscle tone
Shoulder stability and control
Activity ideas to develop arm co-ordination, strength and endurance
Hand and finger strength
Hand and finger strength – Adolescents
Playdough and exercise putty
Encouraging young babies to use their hands
Encouraging older babies to use their hands
Encouraging toddlers to use two hands
Encouraging preschool children to use two hands
Encouraging school children to use two hands
Splints
Pressure garments
Scar management
Hand exercisesThumb exercises
Finger exercises
Finger stretches
FDP tenolysis exercises
FDS tenolysis exercises
Supination exercises
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