Buttoning a jacket, tying a shoe, tolerating noisy crowds – it is easy to take these skills for granted. But for many children, learning these tasks is challenging. Occupational therapists specialize in helping children with and without disabilities master these and related skills.
What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapy (OT) is dedicated to helping patients learn the skills that are vital to their daily functioning. “Occupation” doesn’t mean having a job – it means whatever the client wants or needs to do to access and enjoy their daily life.
Occupational therapists are specialists in building fine motor skills. Fine motor skills include any small muscle movement. So, if you were wondering why a child would need occupational therapy, it is to improve on tasks such as:
- Buttoning, zipping, and tying
- Writing, drawing, and coloring
- Putting on or taking off clothing
- Cutting, gluing, and using small tools
- Brushing teeth, combing hair, and using the restroom
Additionally, occupational therapists address sensory processing needs. A sensory need occurs when a child becomes over or under stimulated by sensory input. This may include:
- Overreacting to loud sounds
- Getting irritated by certain types of clothing
- Difficulty understanding the body’s place in physical space
- Extreme sensitivity to particular tastes, textures, pressure, or temperatures
What does Occupational Therapy for Children Look Like?
Occupational therapists create a caring and fun atmosphere for their sessions. Children learn important motor, sensory, and self-care skills through play and practice. Lessons are always designed to meet the child’s individual needs.
In a one-on-one or small group setting, the occupational therapist will guide the child through fun activities that build muscle skills, teach self-care, or help cope with sensory issues. For some children, a few sessions are enough to build the necessary skills. For others, OT is needed for longer periods of time to master the many tasks needed to learn, play, and grow.
Does My Child Need Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapy is commonly recommended for children who have difficulty with fine motor skills, sensory processing issues, or self-care skills. It is very common for children with Autism, Down syndrome, and other developmental or genetic disorders. Consider an OT evaluation if your child has more difficulty than his or her peers with small muscle movements, is slower to learn self-care skills, or seems to be easily overwhelmed, stressed, or frustrated.
Summarizing Occupational Therapy for Kids
- Occupational Therapists help children with and without disabilities master fine motor skills, handle sensory processing issues, and learn self-care skills
- Occupational therapy is very commonly recommended for children with Autism, Down syndrome, and many other developmental or genetic disorders
- Sessions include fun customized strategies and interventions that help kids learn the skills they need in their everyday life
- Consider an OT evaluation if your child may need additional support with small muscle movements or seems easily stressed or frustrated.
Occupational Therapy Bayonne: The Perfect Facility is Here in Town
Searching for occupational therapy centers for kids in NJ can be challenging, but your search can end here. Infinite Therapy Solutions offers licensed occupational therapists who specialize in creating therapy solutions for children of all ages and abilities.
Infinite Therapy Solutions takes a multidisciplinary approach to our work, meaning OTs collaborate with speech-language pathologists, physical therapists, and Autism specialists to create an integrated treatment plan for your child. Our OTs support our Applied Behavior Analysis therapy program – the perfect match for any child with Autism or developmental delays.
Early intervention is key – contact Infinite Therapy Solutions today to learn more about opportunities for your child, which includes other forms of therapy such as physical, applied behavior analysis, and children’s speech therapy in Bayonne, NJ and in-home. New clients are very welcome!