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Occupational Therapy Jobs: A Helping Hand Where Most Needed

Occupational therapy jobs may be described as one of the most challenging yet rewarding jobs around. Occupational therapists help patients who suffer either from mental, physical, developmental or emotional disabling conditions. They help patients improve their abilities to perform tasks or activities which have been impaired due to their health conditions.

The occupational therapy job is not necessarily limited in hospitals alone. Their duties may take them to their patients home, rehabilitation centers, mental health facilities, nursing homes, the workplace, and even in school.

Occupational therapy jobs are important in the lives of individuals suffering from any sort of disorder or disability, whether mental, physical or emotional. They are trained to take care of people with special needs. Different patients have different needs, which are why occupational therapists are trained to apply various kinds of methods suited for each type of patient, to help them heal from any trauma or disability they are suffering from.

The role of each occupational therapist varies. Some instances may require them to help people do simple activities such as lifting bags, folding clothes, driving cars, which involve physical exercises. At times, they will need to exercise patients to improve mental alertness or memory.

Occupational therapists may also encounter patients with permanent disabilities such as cerebral palsy or spinal cord injuries, to name a few. Such patients need special assistance for them to learn to do daily tasks. To help them out, therapists may demonstrate the use of special adaptive equipment such as wheelchairs, eating and dressing aids, and even computer-aided equipment to help them improve communication and adapt better to situations in their environment, be it a home, the workplace or in school.

Helping out elderly patients is also common role for occupational therapists. Their roles as therapists greatly help the elderly live more productive, active and independent lives. These may range from recommendations for adaptive equipment for driving, alternative transportation options, or even assessment of homes and their environment for hazards and conditions that contribute to possible physical injuries. Other situations may involve patients with short-term memory loss or even Alzheimer’s. The therapist may encourage them to make lists to aid recall.

In the mental health setting, occupational therapy jobs teach you how to help treat patients who are mentally ill, emotionally disturbed or have stress-related disorders by engaging them in activities that would help them cope with daily life.

There are also instances where children with disabilities or impairments need to be helped in school. The occupational therapists role may be to evaluate the child’s capabilities, recommend and provide therapy. They can also help modify classroom equipment to help the child participate in school activities. If there is more than one child in a class that needs help, the occupational therapist may opt to work with the children individually or lead small groups in the classroom.

Occupational therapy jobs are indeed challenging and varied. But one must admit that they are most important to patients as they strive to get back to living independent, productive and satisfying lives.

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Image taken on 2009-09-30 00:00:11. Image Source. (Used with permission)

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