Occupational therapy is a rehabilitative service for people with mental, physical, developmental, or emotional impairments that restores or maintains their ability to perform tasks used in daily living, often through developing ways to modify or adapt activities.
Patients that have changes associated with aging and/or health conditions that impact their ability to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADL) or Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) can greatly benefit from occupational therapy services.
Comprehensive Assessment and Treatment may include:
- ADL teach/re-teach
- Kitchen Safety
- Compensatory and energy conservation techniques
- Bathing/personal grooming training
Who might benefit From Occupational Therapy at Home?
Patients that have changes associated with aging and/or health conditions that impact their ability to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADL) or Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) can greatly benefit from occupational therapy. Occupational therapy targets outcomes that patients find meaningful and purposeful so the likelihood the patient will engage in the plan of care is increased. Some of the targeted areas in home health that can be impacted by occupational therapy include, but are not limited to:
- Vision and sensory losses: Occupational therapists can analyze the patient’s daily routines and identify techniques and adaptations to the environment or behavior to compensate for limited vision or loss of feeling.
- Dementia and other cognitive impairments: Interventions directed at the interaction between the patient and his environment, including family, can enhance safety, improve management of ADL/IADL, and reduce caregiver burden. Occupational therapists are competent to perform standardized cognitive performance testing, such as, Ross Information Processing Assessment, LOTCA- Loewenstein Occupational Therapy Cognitive Assessment,
MVPT – Motor-Free Visual Perception Test, ACL – Allen Cognitive Test.
- Behavioral health disorders: Occupational therapists have a core knowledge base in psychosocial issues which enable them to work with patients to provide strategies to reestablish daily routines, enhance medication compliance, and manage stress/behavioral problems.
- Limited functional mobility: Occupational therapists are able to analyze the demands of an activity, to assess performance skills, and to identify the appropriate match of demands and skill to achieve optimal outcomes in functional skills.
- Difficulty with grooming, bathing and dressing: Tailored interventions, including therapeutic exercises, neuromuscular reeducation, and provision of assistive devices as appropriate, based on the patients environment and ability can promote the patient’s independence in selfcare and safety.
- Difficulty with swallowing and oral function for feeding: Incorporation of occupational therapy into the treatment for impairments/functional limitations of mastication, the preparatory phase, oral phase, pharyngeal stage, and esophageal phase of swallowing enhances patient outcomes. Occupational therapists make appropriate recommendations regarding diet and compensatory techniques and instruct in direct/indirect therapies to facilitate oral motor control for feeding.