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Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists are dedicated to helping children develop all the abilities they need for the many “occupations” of childhood, including playing with friends, being a student, helping at home, eating, getting dressed, and participating in hobbies and sports, to name a few.

Our occupational therapists provide comprehensive assessments and intervention in the following areas:

  • • Fine Motor / Handwriting Skills
  • • Visual Motor & Visual Perceptual Skills
  • • Self-Care Skills such as feeding, getting dressed
  • • Oral Motor Skills
  • • Sensory Integration
  • • Organizing and Motor Planning
  • • Socialization & Play
  • • Environmental Adaptations for School and Home
  • • Parent Education
  • • Teacher Consultation & School Observation
  • • Interactive Metronome

Your child may also benefit from our other groups and programs. To find out more go to GROUPS.

What is Occupational Therapy?

Pediatric occupational therapists evaluate and treat children who are having difficulty participating in meaningful activities (or “occupations”) relevant to their daily lives. This includes playing, learning, paying attention, participating in sports, self-care (getting dressed, feeding), and being a friend.

Occupational therapy treatment often focuses on improving a child’s development in the areas of fine motor skills (handwriting, cutting with scissors, taking notes in the classroom, manipulating fasteners such as buttons), play skills, social skills, and self-care skills (dressing, feeding).

Below is a list of common problems treated by an occupational therapist:

  • • FINE MOTOR DELAYS: difficulty with handwriting and cutting skills, buttoning a shirt or pants, using an appropriate grasp to hold a pencil

  • • SELF-CARE DELAYS: difficulty with feeding skills which includes eating a variety of foods, using spoon/fork/knife appropriately, and drinking from a cup, straw; difficulty with dressing and grooming

  • • BILATERAL COORDINATION DELAYS: difficulty using both sides of the body together to perform a task such as tying shoes, throwing/catching a ball, pumping a swing, riding a bike, and jumping jacks.

  • • VISUAL PERCEPTUAL DISORDERS: difficulty organizing visual information from the environment in order to perform a task (putting a puzzle together, copying notes from the board/paper)

  • • SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDERS: difficulty responding appropriately to different sensory experiences (touch, movement, taste, sound) which interferes with the ability to perform daily activities

  • • DECREASED STRENGTH & COORDINATION: difficulty performing age appropriate weight bearing movements (wheelbarrow walk) and holding body positions against gravity (superman), poor posture, leans while sitting or standing, seems clumsy, awkward, and uncoordinated

  • • POOR ORGANIZATION & BEHAVIOR: difficulty paying attention, following verbal directions, and staying on task, impulsive, distractible, easily frustrated, inflexible with changes in routine, moves slowly and takes a long time to complete tasks


How do I know if my child needs Occupational Therapy?

If you have any doubts about your child’s progression with any of the above areas, give us a call to set up an evaluation. The PDFs below can help you determine if your child needs Occupational Therapy.

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WHEN SHOULD I REFER MY CHILD TO OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY?

  • Difficulty with cutting, writing, manipulating clothing fasteners, or feeding self
  • Difficulty completing puzzles or matching colors, shapes, or sizes
  • Overly sensitive or under- reactive to touch, move- ment, sights, sounds, tastes, or smells
  • Appears clumsy or awkward
  • Difficulty with gross motor functioning, sitting upright in their desk, or playing on the playground
  • Does not demonstrate established hand dominance
  • Activity level that is unusually high or low
  • Difficulty making trans- itions from one situation to another
  • Impulsive, lack of self control, or inability to unwind or calm self
  • Social and / or emotional problems
  • READ ABOUT MILESTONES >>>