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Under what circumstances would you need an occupational therapist? When you or a loved one is hit with a major illness, it can devastate not only the patient, but also his or her family and caregivers. And one of the most debilitating issues is that the patient may have to relearn how to do basic skills they took for granted when they were healthy. That is where a variety of therapists can come in to help the patient. One of these is the occupational therapist. But when should you seek out an occupational therapy option? Here are a few things to consider about that particular healthcare opportunity.

What Can an Occupational Therapist Do?

An occupational therapist (or OT for short) provides therapy for patients who are recovering from a variety of illnesses, both physical and mental. This therapy can help you to rehabilitate by helping you relearn or adapt tasks that are needed in everyday life. Unfortunately, many such diseases make these daily tasks difficult and the OT can help you learn how to do them again.

Why would a patient need occupational therapy?

After a debilitating illness or accident, it can be difficult for a patient to interact with the world around them. They may also have difficulty in appropriately using both their fine motor skills and gross motor skills, including everything from writing to getting dressed. In addition, they may have difficulty with sensory overload that can make it difficult to handle various sensory experiences such as sounds, textures, and even smells.

What medical conditions can require occupational therapy?

There are a variety of diseases that can require occupational therapy to fully recover. These include:
• Accidents such as car wrecks leading to head trauma
• Arthritis, particularly rheumatoid arthritis
• Cerebral palsy
• Huntington disease
• Multiple sclerosis
• Muscular dystrophy
• Parkinson’s disease
• Strokes

If you are not sure if your particular condition could be helped with occupational therapy, consult with your healthcare professional to get expert medical advice.

Skills Taught by an OT

The OT will help you with a variety of daily tasks, including, but not limited to:
Bathing/showering/personal hygiene
Bowel and bladder function/incontinence
Dressing and grooming
Cooking and eating
Daily tasks such as shopping, using computers and phones, and traveling

Find the Right Fit

It isn’t enough to just find an occupational therapist; it is important to find one who fits in with your particular needs and that works well with your personality. As a start, ask your healthcare provider or primary care physician if he or she can recommend a therapist. In addition, your insurance company can also provide you with a list of approved therapists who may be covered by your policy. You can also visit and ask for a professional from Gold Leaf Care.

If you are hit with a debilitating disease or physical injury, it can turn your entire world upside down. The pain and trauma of the affliction is not the end of the problem. These problems can also cause you long-term issues such as the inability to care for yourself and do basic functions that you took for granted. That is why an occupational therapist can be so important in your recovery.