Occupational Therapy (OT) believes health and well-being is more than the absence of disease; it is impacted by the ability to participate in one’s own life. To an Occupational Therapist, the word “occupation” means all the things you do to live the life you want. There are many reasons you may not be able to do those tasks anymore. An OT works with you to find out how you can be as independent and as safe as you can while living in the Long-Term Care facility.
This may involve looking more closely at your body, mind, and/or the place and items around you to see if any changes can be made to help you function better. These changes may include trying equipment such as wheelchairs, special cushions or mattresses, assistive or adaptive devices, and other items. An OT works with you, your family, and your health care team to help you identify and meet your goals. Some homes also have occupational therapy assistants who will work with you.
Occupational Therapists assist individuals and their families to adapt to disruptions in lifestyle by assessing and at times prescribing interventions for:
- Physical function, including musculoskeletal system, joint function and limitations
- Cognitive and psychosocial factors affecting daily activities
- Performance of basic activities of daily living (like dressing, bathing, and mobility) and community living skills (like shopping, cooking, and transportation)
- The resident’s environment at home and community to identify facilitators and barriers to daily function