Occupational Therapy Overview
Occupational therapy helps to develop the necessary abilities to accomplish a person’s activities of daily living and/or to find ways to compensate for physical, cognitive, and/or affective limitations to ensure optimal participation in these activities.
An occupational therapist can help develop the fundamental abilities in self-care activities (dressing, eating, grooming), in household or work activities (ex. writing, computer use, meal preparation and planning, home and life organization), and in leisure activities (hobbies, recreational activities, social outings). An occupational therapist will also help modify the environment or the activities so that the person can accomplish them.
Adults with all levels of abilities can benefit from occupational therapy treatment. In particular, our clinicians treat clients with neurological conditions, and intervention is available in both English and French.
Stroke or Parkinson’s Disease clients’ interventions might include: arm and hand motor control and fine motor dexterity, practice of functional tasks (dressing, grooming, meal preparation, household tasks), writing, computer use, return to work tasks, social or leisure activities, return to driving preparation tasks, home safety assessment and assistive device or equipment prescription (ADP authoriser for mobility devices), and activities to stimulate or compensate for difficulties with concentration, dual attention, memory, and organization. We also have an occupational therapist certified to offer the LSVT BIG® program for Parkinson’s rehabilitation (see link https://www.lsvtglobal.com/).
Clients with concussion can expect assistance with symptom management through system regulation strategies, education, support, and assistance with the integration of organization, pain management, fatigue management, sleep hygiene, pacing, relaxation, and healthy lifestyle strategies.
Our clinicians are also happy to work with clients with neurological issues other than the examples listed above.
- Chedoke McMaster Stroke Assessment
- 9-hole peg test (fine motor)
- Box and Block test (gross motor)
- Pinch and grip strength
- Sensory screening
- Trails A&B
- Rivermead Behavioural Memory Test
- Motor-free Visual Perception Test
- Test of Everyday Attention
- Toglia Categorization test
- Dynamic activity analysis and functional assessments
- Writing screening
- Home environment
- Neuroplasticity based motor learning approach
- Mirror therapy
- LSVT BIG®
- Stimulation activities
- Compensatory strategies for memory
- Executive dysfunction
- Cognitive fatigue
- Stress management
- Return to activity (can include activities such as self-care, transfers, writing, driving, household chores, leisure, etc.)
- Simulated activity remediation
- Assistive devices (bathroom equipment, dressing aids)
- Energy conservation/Fatigue management
- Stress management
- Occupational scheduling
- Home safety and equipment recommendations
- ADP authorizer for mobility devices (walkers, manual and power wheelchairs, and scooters)
What to Expect
The occupational therapist will meet with the person (and a family member/caregiver if desired) to discuss their concerns, and identify challenges and activities they are having difficulty completing in order to establish treatment goals. A medical referral is not necessary to received occupational therapy services.
The occupational therapist will evaluate the identified challenging activities and establish a treatment plan. Evaluation may consist of standardized assessments or dynamic activity analysis of the activities. The treatment plan will include direct one-on-one intervention sessions for a block of sessions with a re-evaluation of progress.
Intervention sessions can vary greatly depending on issues identified and may include: activity task practice, activities to stimulate fine and gross motor control, activities to stimulation cognition/perceptual abilities, self regulation and introduction and training with strategies or devices to facilitate activity completion.
Sessions are usually held at the clinic but can also be held in the community or at the individual’s home. Our Occupational Therapists always work in collaboration with other professionals involved with the client, as well as the clinic’s interprofessional team (physiotherapy, audiology, and speech-language pathology) to offer the most well-rounded service to our clients.