Occupational Therapy, or OT, is a treatment meant to improve fine and gross motor skills, as well as motor planning. It may also be helpful for children who struggle with self-regulation and sensory processing. Children see occupational therapists for a variety of reasons, including:
- Motor skills – hand strength and dexterity, balance, or coordination
- Visual impairment – difficulty tracking a moving object, or hand-eye coordination
- Cognitive delays – problem-solving skills, memory, or attention
- Poor social skills – taking turns, listening, or following directions
- Difficulty performing self-care tasks – dressing, bathing, or self-feeding
Occupational therapists look at children from a holistic perspective to evaluate their specific strengths and challenges. Then they will create a treatment plan with activities for the child to work on in-session or at home. These activities might include physical, conversational, or multi-sensory components to help your child overcome physical or cognitive barriers (even if it looks like play). Some exercises an occupational therapist might suggest are:
- Playing dress-up
- Coloring, writing or tracing letters
- Controlling a pencil or using scissors
- Throwing and catching a ball
- Organizing a box or backpack
If your child is receiving occupational therapy services, or if you believe your child could benefit from our Early Intervention OT program, it’s important not to forego receiving occupational therapy during this current COVID-19 health emergency – even in the absence of in-person visits. Since delaying occupational therapy or interrupting services can be associated with losing progress that a child has been making, it is important to continue to seek OT services in other ways – which is why LifeROOTS is committed to delivering a variety of therapies, including occupational therapy, via Telehealth. Our Telehealth program offers “virtual visits” to provide developmental support and services – helping children maintain their progress … and providing caregivers with important coaching to help support a child’s development. Early Intervention OT services through Telehealth are free to families with children from birth to three – and can be arranged on your schedule.
We’re here to help your child reach his/her full potential at all times – including during this time of uncertainty in light of the current Covid-19 health crisis. If you are concerned about your child’s development and want to learn more about our OT services, or to inquire about scheduling an OT Telehealth or evaluation session for your child, please email Jenniferg@lifeROOTSnm.org or complete our contact request form here.