How To Tell If Your Child Would Benefit From Occupational Therapy

It can be hard for you to notice small problems your child has that may benefit from occupational therapy. While you see the child every day, small changes or the lack thereof can go unnoticed. While you may see that your toddler is trying to learn a new skill, you may not realize how long it is taking. This could be something as simple as learning to walk, hold an eating utensil, or calm him or herself when frustrated. As the child gets older and starts going to school, a teacher may suggest therapy. If you are struggling with this suggestion, take a step back and really watch your child. Here are a few indications occupational therapy may be the thing to help.

Motor Skills and Coordination

By the time your child is in school, he or she should be able to hold a pencil or crayon, make simple folds, and use children's scissors. If there is a problem, the teacher will work with your child to see if it is just something new that requires practice to be comfortable or if it is something else. Occupational therapy can help with hand-eye coordination and other motor skills. This can help with schoolwork as well as social interactions with the other children.

Organizational Skills

While it is true that children tend to be messy, and do not like to have to stop playing to pick up their bedroom, there is a difference between being lazy or uncaring and the ability to do it. Give your child a chore and then watch how he or she does it. Does he or she keep putting it off and trying to go play or just sit around, or is there an attempt to get it done but the child is not sure how to go about it? When a child cannot organize a task that is age-appropriate it may be due to the lack of the skills necessary to do it. This can manifest in missing homework assignments, a messy school desk, or unorganized backpack. Do not count a messy bedroom as this is normal for children. However, when a child knows that homework is due and he or she must be able to find it to do it, having a mess can mean a lack of organizational skills.

Occupational therapy can be of great help to children. It will help them become more independent and able to do things they have always needed help with, such as eating with utensils, writing, reading, and math problems. This gives them a sense of confidence that enables them to meet and play with other children comfortably. While it might be hard for you to recognize the signs for needing occupational therapy, you can always talk with a teacher, nurse, or doctor. Listen to them; they are only trying to help. For more information, contact an establishment like Eyas Landing.


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