What Is the Goal of Occupational Therapy?

Occupational TherapyOccupational therapy is a series of therapies that help a person regain or strengthen the ability to do their job, take care of their physical and mental needs, and overcome challenges that keep them from completing activities and instrumental activities of daily living.

What does an occupational therapist do to ensure your mom can do things independently when she’s diagnosed with multiple sclerosis? Here are the different ways an occupational therapist helps.

Occupational Therapy Has Three Goals

There are three key goals in any occupational therapy plan. They are to help improve or maintain skills needed for leisure, productivity, and self-care.

  • Leisure – Ability to participate in favorite hobbies, sports, and social activities
  • Productivity – Ability to complete tasks for your work, volunteer activities, or household management
  • Self-care – Ability to take care of yourself through cooking meals, feeding yourself, maintaining grooming and hygiene, dressing, and walking around

Depending on the severity of the symptoms, your mom may regain skills or need to learn new ways to tackle daily tasks. This is the goal of occupational therapy.

How Do Occupational Therapists Help Your Mom?

What happens during an occupational therapy session that helps with these? An occupational therapist starts by assessing your mom’s abilities and emotional health.

They will discuss how MS impacts your mom’s life. Does she tire easily, struggle to maintain her balance, and experience pain? Can you bend over, reach something, or lift and carry items without struggling?

From here, they can work on exercises or how to use adaptive equipment like a cane to help her remain mobile and manage daily routines when pain is present. The disease is impacting your mom’s emotional and mental health. Her occupational therapist will work on ways to stay positive, de-stress, and learn how to release emotions when she’s having a bad day.

Your mom may need to learn how to use a grabber to reach cans from a cupboard or pick up items she’s dropped on the ground. Her therapist can teach her how to walk down the stairs while using a cane. Your mom learns how to get in and out of a shower using a grab bar for support.

If your mom’s cognitive function is impacted by the disease, her occupational therapist helps her work around issues. She’ll learn how to use apps on her phone to build lists and set reminders. She can use daily alarms on her phone to remind her to take medications. A pill organizer may help.

Ask your mom’s doctor about the benefits of occupational therapy. It’s one of the best ways to help your mom maintain her independence when MS is progressing. An occupational therapist will meet with your family, discuss the best approaches, and start working with your mom to help her with daily tasks.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring occupational therapy in Broomall, PA, and the surrounding area, please contact the friendly staff at Suma Home Care. (484) 206-4544

Ibrahim & Mariama Suma-Keita