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Can Occupational Therapy Help Children?

Home News & Videos JAG Physical Therapy Blog Can Occupational Therapy Help Children?

Although occupational therapy is often used by adult patients looking to relearn skills for work or recreation after a serious medical event, this type of therapy is also very beneficial for children with a wide variety of health conditions. Kids can use occupational therapy to improve their performance at school, participate to a greater degree in all types of activities with family, friends, and schoolmates, and learn to socialize with others more effectively.

Pediatric occupational therapy also can help children improve their hand-eye coordination, fine and gross motor skills, abilities in handwriting and typing, and other skills that they use every day. Moreover, occupational therapists can aid kids with disabilities in the use of adaptive equipment and other devices that allow them to be more independent and confident.

At JAG Physical Therapy, our specialist pediatric therapists are committed to helping kids build up the skills they need to succeed in the most effective, most fun way possible. And we’re dedicated to educating families and caregivers on the best ways to support children continuing their rehabilitation at home. Read further to learn more about the ways occupational therapy benefits children, or schedule an appointment today.

What Children Might Need Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy may be recommended for children recovering from broken bones or other musculoskeletal injuries, burns, or surgery. However, OT can also benefit children with developmental or learning delays, birth injuries or birth defects, and serious chronic illnesses like multiple sclerosis. Occupational therapy can be part of a treatment plan for children who have been diagnosed with cancer or who have had traumatic injuries to the brain or spinal cord. It can also be useful for kids who have mental health conditions or who have experienced emotional trauma.

Signs Your Child Could Benefit from Pediatric Occupational Therapy

A physician may decide to refer a child who has a specific diagnosis for pediatric OT. However, parents might notice day-to-day signs that indicate occupational therapy could be helpful for their child. For example, seeing your child consistently avoiding certain textures or surfaces could indicate they may be experiencing sensory processing disorder.

If they do not use both hands together when playing, particularly when roleplaying with friends or siblings, this could indicate problems with hand-eye coordination or manual dexterity. Likewise, a child having difficulty or taking an excessive amount of time in dressing themselves or tying their shoes might mean they have an issue with using their hands.

Children who have a hard time self-soothing, who avoid eye contact and are reluctant to speak or use an overly quiet tone of voice with adults, or who have trouble socializing with their peers can also be greatly helped by pediatric occupational therapy.

Contact JAG Physical Therapy today to learn more about our pediatric physical and occupational therapy programs at our many convenient locations throughout  New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania . You can also find a location near you or book an appointment for your child online.

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