Benefits of OT Part IOccupational therapy can be very beneficial for children, and can help with a variety of different skills such as attention span, sensory processing, activities of daily living, fine motor and gross motor skills, visual perceptual skills, handwriting, and much more. So when is it appropriate for my child to see an occupational therapist? As a physical therapist, there are a few things I look for before requesting an occupational therapy evaluation.
Following directions and attending to a task are two big problems that cause me to request an occupational therapy evaluation. These are the kids that are constantly running around the gym and are having problems focusing to complete a 1 step direction. I also see if they can complete activities of daily living such as putting their socks and shoes on. Kids should be able to independently take off their socks and shoes at the age of 2, and be able to independently put them back on between the ages of 3-4. Vision is another area of a child that I check to see if occupational therapy is appropriate. Vision can throw off how a child perceives depth and with tracking objects. For example, if I throw a ball to the child and they are unable to follow it with their eyes this tells me that there may be a visual problem.
These are just a few things that I look at during my treatment sessions or during my initial evaluation, and a few things that you can assess at home. Lowcountry Therapy Center offers FREE screenings for all of our disciplines (OT, PT, ST). If you are unsure if OT can help your child give us a call at (843)-815-6999 and schedule a free screening.
Here is more information about what occupational therapy is, how it relates to children, and what they can do to help.