More Than
Therapy

Raising Children
to Their Highest Potential

Occupational Therapy

Pediatric occupational therapy focuses on developing and enhancing a child's daily living skills in order to reach his or her highest level of independence. This is accomplished through providing meaningful therapeutic activities to meet each child's unique needs. Those who may benefit from pediatric occupational therapy include children whose lives have been affected by birth injury, developmental delay, accident, illness or sensory processing disorder.

Every day, countless children experience problems that significantly affect their ability to manage their daily lives. Occupational therapists can help children achieve or regain a high level of independence. When skill and strength cannot be developed or improved, occupational therapy offers creative solutions and resources for carrying out the child's daily activities using strategies and equipment designed just for them.

Midland Occupational Therapists | Traverse City Occupational Therapists

Lansing Occupational Therapist

 

 

Occupational therapists specialize in:

  • countingFine-motor skills and grasp
  • Gross motor skill largely concerning upper extremities and trunk stability
  • Joint range of motion, muscle strength and muscle tone
  • Visual and perceptual skills
  • Motor planning and bilateral coordination
  • Sensory processing
  • Functional activities to improve daily living and play skills

 

Children may need occupational therapy for any number of reasons, including if you answer "yes" to any of the following questions. Does your child:

  • Have difficulty attending or is over-focused and unable to shift to the next task?
  • Have low or weak muscle tone?
  • Need more practice than other children to learn new skills?
  • Reverse letters such as "b" and "d," or cannot correctly space letters/words on lines?
  • Overreact to touch, taste, sounds or odors?
  • Seem overly active and unable to slow down?
  • Have difficulty forming shapes and letters even when given an example?
  • Accidentally break crayons and pencils frequently or write with heavy pressure?
  • Dislike jumping, swinging or having feet off the ground?
  • Dislike coloring or handwriting, and tire quickly during written work?
  • Have poor self-esteem or lack of confidence?
  • Dislike swimming, bathing, hugs and/or haircuts?
  • Avoid physical activities?
  • Have difficulty taking care of self (feeding/eating, using the toilet, dressing, bathing, etc.)?

Occupational therapy is an extensive field that treats a wide range of conditions and diagnoses. Some of the conditions treated include:

  • Sensory processing disorders
  • Cerebral palsy or other neuromuscular conditions
  • Autism
  • Pervasive developmental disorders
  • Down syndrome and other genetic disorders
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Brachial Plexus injuries and other upper extremity injuries
  • Fine motor and handwriting challenges
  • Feeding difficulties
  • Visual motor and visual perceptual deficits
  • Difficulties with dressing, hygiene and other aspects of self-care
  • Difficulties with play and other social skills

Sensory integration refers to the nervous system's ability to organize different kinds of sensation entering at the same time to produce useful thoughts and actions.

There are seven sensory systems: vision, hearing, smell, taste, touch, proprioception (joint and muscle movement) and vestibular (movement and gravity) systems from which information is processed and integrated. Sensory integration underlies the development of learning, social skills and motor actions. In order to function effectively, our brain needs to register sensory information from each sensory system and unconsciously filter relevant information based on our environment and our task at hand. This automatic filtering of sensory information results in both behaviors and/or motor actions.

Efficient sensory processing allows us to function effectively. Inefficient sensory processing, or sensory processing dysfunction, often results in struggles with attention, social skills, coordination and/or fine motor skills. These struggles often result in learning difficulties and/or challenging behaviors.

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