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Monday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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Sunday Closed

What Exactly Does An Occupational Therapist Do?

Occupational Therapy practitioners help individuals of all ages live their lives to the fullest by promoting health and preventing – or living better with – injury, illness, or disability.

What is an Occupational Therapist?

Occupational therapy is an allied health profession that treats mental, physical, developmental, and emotional conditions that affect a patient’s ability to perform daily tasks through the therapeutic use of everyday activities or occupations.

An occupational therapist improves, rehabilitates, or maintains a patient’s ability to perform 

everyday activities.

Occupational therapy differs from other healthcare professions, such as physical therapy or nursing, treating the entire patient rather than a particular injury, ailment, or disability. For example, following surgery, a nurse may assist a patient with recovery care, dressing changes, and pain management. On the other hand, an OT will assess the patient’s important activities, teach them to become independent again after surgery and resume the roles that define them.

What Do Occupational Therapy Services Include?

Occupational therapists help people of all ages who are experiencing physical, developmental, social, or emotional difficulties regain the skills needed for functional independent living. They replace function loss and assist individuals with daily living activities using adaptive equipment and customized treatment programs. They treat a wide range of injuries and conditions, including:

  • Lymphedema
  • Orthopedic issues
  • Neurological/Neuromuscular disorder
  • Balance and Vestibular Rehab/Dizziness
  • Pediatric therapy
  • Hand injuries
  • Low Vision

Occupational therapy services typically include:

  • An individualized evaluation in which the client and occupational therapist determine the person’s goals.
  • A tailored intervention improves the person’s ability to perform daily tasks and achieve goals.
  • An outcomes evaluation to ensure the goals are met and/or to make changes to the intervention plan.

The focus of occupational therapy practitioners is on adapting the environment and task to fit the person, and the person is an integral part of the therapy team. It is a science-based, evidence-based practice.

Required Skills

While occupational therapists come from various backgrounds, a few key skills and qualities lend themselves well to the nature of occupational therapy work. For instance, to serve their patient’s best interests, these professionals must have a strong sense of compassion and empathy. Indeed, many occupational therapists are motivated by a desire to improve the lives of others.

Aside from a people-oriented mindset, OTs should have several skills to succeed in the field. These are some examples:

  • Communication skills: To effectively understand their patients’ needs and explain the treatment process, occupational therapists must have strong written and verbal communication skills. In addition, they must document treatment plans and progress while collaborating with other healthcare professionals.
  • Problem Solving: Because no two cases are identical, effective OTs must possess exceptional problem-solving skills to determine the optimal course of action for each situation.
  • Patience and Flexibility: Occupational therapy is frequently a long road to restoring a patient’s independence. Good OTs must be flexible and patient when dealing with the highs and lows of this process.

Occupational Therapy in Kearney, NE

An OT focuses on adapting, modifying, or changing a person’s daily activities by modifying the activity, environment, or person’s skill set. They frequently help people regain independence after an injury or help people with developmental delays adapt to daily life. They consider physical, emotional, and environmental factors.

Elite Health and Wellness in Kearney, NE, provides occupational therapy services to patients of all ages to help them regain normal function.

Contact us today at (308) 455 1500 for help getting back to your daily activities through occupational therapy.