Occupational Therapy for Children
A child’s occupation is to play and learn. Some children can have difficulties with play and learning, possibly because of conditions they have been born with, perhaps an injury or simply differences in their learning style and needs. If a child’s play and ability to learn is affected then their independence, health and how they feel about themselves will be impacted. An Occupational Therapist for children can help them to live more independently and improve their capacity to play and learn.
Therapies for Kids offers effective occupational therapy services for children in Sydney. We can help evaluate a child’s skills for activities, school performance, and everyday living tasks. As well as assisting a child’s physical performance, an occupational therapist can address social, psychological, and environmental factors involved with the child.
Occupational Therapists work with children of all ages and their families, to help enhance skills necessary for their everyday life including playing, getting dressed and handwriting. Occupational therapy may also include making changes to the child’s environment such as their school or home to help the child be more independent.
In paediatric occupational therapy, we aim to allow our babies, children and adolescents develop their independence in everyday tasks such as:
- Fine motor skills: Coordinating the small muscles such as the hand (usually in co-ordination with the eyes), to enable your child to hold, explore and manipulate toys and tools such as a pencil or spoon. Fine motor skills are used in activities such as handwriting, dressing, feeding and using scissors.
- Gross motor skills: Involve the large muscles of the body that are important for major body movement such as sitting, walking, jumping, and throwing a ball.
- Tool use: Involves utilising objects within the hand such as cutlery or pencils for play, self-care and handwriting skills.
- Handwriting: A child must have sufficient manual dexterity, fine motor coordination and visual motor skills for handwriting. Areas such as letter formation, reversals, speed, legibility, pencil grip, reducing pain and/or fatigue may be addressed.
- Table top and school readiness: These activities are generally the expected requirements when starting kindergarten. For example: drawing, cutting, on-task classroom behaviour, task completion, following instructions and craft skills.
- Self-care skills: Involve skills such as using a knife and fork, tying shoelaces, fastening buttons and dressing and toileting.
- Play skills: Are those that are used in everyday play, such as threading and using puzzles as well as the imaginative, social and communication requirements.
- Visual perception: Involves understanding what is being seen. Visual perception is highly important in completing many activities, such as reading a story, completing a puzzle, identifying letters and numbers, copying and writing.
- Sensory processing: Involves the way the body processes and reacts to the information it receives from the surrounding environment. Children may demonstrate over or under sensitivity to certain sensations such as loud noises or certain items of clothing; sensation seeking behaviour, such as chewing on things or enjoying being spun repetitively; and difficulty maintaining a calm state.
Our team of occupational therapists have the skills and training to provide the best assessment and therapy to your baby, child or adolescent to help them gain the necessary skills for participation and independence in the activities of their daily lives such as playing, learning and self-care.
Our OT’s all have prior paediatric experience before joining our team, they participate in regular internal and external professional development and the best thing is, they love their jobs and love working with families and children.
Therapy services are available six days per week.