Think about some tasks you do everyday. Eating, getting dressed, taking a shower are just some simple things most people do everyday without any trouble.
Things are quite the opposite if you have any physical and mental disability, injury or illness. Simple and easy daily tasks seem troublesome. This is where occupational therapy comes in.
If any physical and mental disability, injury or illness is making your daily life problematic, occupational therapy will help you overcome the problems and reach your full potential.
Also, it is possible to improve the wellbeing of children and adults with autism with occupational therapy. Children who are mentally and physically fit but having trouble with motor skills, gross motor skills, visual processing, an occupational therapist may be able to help them.
Occupational therapy for children with autism
The way children with autism learn, communicate or behave are different from others. They have difficulties in social life, interaction with others is hard for most of them and unfamiliar environments often cause anxiety. Most children with autism struggle with-
Gross motor skills: Children with autism can face challenges regarding gross motor skills like moving, co-ordinating body parts, using stairs or understanding the concept of right and left.
Fine motor skills: Difficulties holding small things, using pencil, spoon, straw at an appropriate age, using zippers, scissors, buttons, shoelaces, avoiding tasks that require fine motor skills like drawing, pre-writing shapes or puzzles.
Oral sensory: Delayed oral motor and sensory skills can show in one or more ways like excessive drooling, difficulties drinking from cups at an appropriate age, using frontal teeths instead of the molars, difficulties drinking from straws, tiredness after eating and mouthing toys or objects after appropriate age.
Delayed development: When a child is not developing social, language or emotional skills at a predictable age, it could mean that child is facing development delay. Not learning how to crawl, walk or talk at a particular age.
Social skills: A child with social interaction skill challenges can show symptoms like difficulties in a new environment, communicating with others, having trouble in a school environment. They might have difficulties communicating with family members.
Learning difficulties: Most children with autism are easily distracted. They are unable to concentrate and get tired easily.
Visual processing: Children with visual processing disorder often have problems telling time, reading, spelling or copying. They may have crooked handwriting and difficulties with letters or numbers.
These complications are common for children suffering from autism and they hold them back from having a life that is close to normal. With occupational therapy children suffering from autism can get everyday tasks done without help.
Leading a “normal” life may not be possible for them, but therapies can help them reach their full potential by improving their social and day-to-day skills.
Occupational therapy for children
Children who do not have complications like autism might also need help doing simple day-to-day tasks. If a child has difficulties learning, playing, dressing, feeding, reading, coping in school or a new environment, an occupational therapist may be able to help them. Birth injury, traumatic experience, post surgical difficulties or chronic illness, it is best for them to see an occupational therapist. If a child is unable to improve playing or learning skills, they will not be able to connect with their surroundings and become independent. But occupational therapy can help them overcome their physical or mental complications, reach their full potential and be independent.