April is National Occupational Therapy Month. As we celebrate this profession we love, we are also reflecting on the theme of Embracing Challenges, Enhancing Lives. It is so relevant during this time of adjusting to social distancing, school closures and enormous disruption to daily life. In the past month, so much has changed for all of us! Undoubtedly, people everywhere are attempting to make the most of their daily routines and Occupational Therapy (OT) is here to contribute to their success.
Our occupational therapy team has made many adjustments to meet the needs of our clients. In the past several weeks, we have set up resources and intervention plans to be able to provide telehealth services. Currently we are completing teletherapy treatment sessions and evaluation visits. Most families are using computers, smartphones and tablets to do sessions while at home.
Appointment times will continue to be scheduled through our front office, just like they are for regularly scheduled office sessions.
Curious about our Occupational Therapy telehealth? Here’s the top 10 list of the things that we did with our clients last week.
- Helped to set up homework space for distance learning for a child with limited attention and concentration. Click on this link for some of our previously shared ideas OT tips for homework success.
- Created a daily schedule with a client that balances work, self care and free time.
- Taught a sensory based exercise program, for use before and during distance learning, to support a “just right” level of alertness and focus.
- Supported a child in identifying emotions related to the current situation. Then we rated them on a 5 Point Scale for self regulation. Next, we taught parents how to support their child using sensory inputs to help with self regulation.
- Shared handouts and resources for clients to refer to until their next session.
- Led scavenger hunts for kids to look through their houses and find tools that can be used in therapy sessions.
- Played games that help to build motor skills and teach social skills.
- Read a story about worrying and helped the client to identify self calming strategies.
- Taught a caregiver how to structure play time to help the client to be able to make transitions without becoming overwhelmed.
- We had fun! While we worked through some hard times, we also laughed and smiled.
While many places are providing links for resources, we are focusing on clients’ individual needs. Teachers, school administrators and government leaders are posting resource ideas to help families. We are continuing to provide services. Many of our clients are saying, “I don’t need another link to go and research things. I need help to figure out what to do.” We are listening and will continue to provide the support you need.
Occupational therapy practitioners get excited about helping clients be able to do the little things that are important to them every day. To learn more about what OT is, visit our past blog What is OT?
If you have questions about how OT would help you or a family member, contact our office at 503-352-0240 and ask to speak to an Occupational Therapist.
Yours in Health,New Horizons Wellness Services
13333 SW 68th Pkwy,
Tigard, OR 97223
New Horizons Wellness Services provides a true multidisciplinary approach to mental & physical health treatments for children, adults and families.