Occupational therapy is a health and rehabilitation profession. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages who need specialized assistance to lead independent, productive, and satisfying lives due to their physical, developmental, social, or emotional problems. Occupational therapists use the “occupations” of self-care, work, and play/leisure activities to enhance development, increase independence, and/or prevent disability. For more information, please visit the American Occupational Therapy website.
Is Occupational Therapy the same as Physical Therapy?
This is a common question, but the answer is no, they are not the same. An occupational therapist helps people of all ages (from newborns to older adults) who have an illness or disability to do every day normal things that are important and meaningful to them such as eating, dressing, school activities, and work.
The occupational therapist helps by making changes in any of the things that may limit an individual’s ability to do those tasks, including the environment, the task, or the person’s skills needed for the task. Occupational therapists also have the knowledge and training to work with people with a mental illness or emotional problems such as depression and/or stress.