Does my child need Occupational Therapy?

 

Children who could benefit from our services may display difficulty with some of the following:

 

 

FINE MOTOR SKILLS

If your child is struggling with fine motor skills, they may have difficulty with one or more of the following actions:

  • Manipulating toys and puzzles

  • Holding a pencil

  • Using scissors

  • Using silverware at an age-appropriate time

  • Using zippers, buttons, shoelaces

  • Picking up small objects utilizing the index finger and thumb only

 

SENSORY PROCESSING

 

Sensory processing is how your child makes sense of the information that they receive through their senses. Does your child exhibit oversensitivty or undersensitivity to touch, taste, movement, smell, or sight? Ask yourself the following questions:

 

  • Is my child overly sensitive to sound, touch, or movement?

  • Is my child in constant motion, jumping, crashing, or bumping into things?

  • Does my child demonstrate inability to calm self when upset?

  • Does my child not enjoy messy play? (i.e., play-doh, water, finger-paint)

  • Does my child dislike wearing certain clothing?

 

VISUAL PERCEPTUAL SKILLS

 

Visual perception refers to the brain’s ability to make sense of what the eyes see. If a child has difficulties with visual perception, they might have difficulty with:

 

  • Completing puzzles

  • Planning actions in relation to objects around them

  • Losing place on a page when reading or writing

  • Discriminating between size of letters and objects

  • Filtering out visual distractions in the classroom in order to attend to the task at hand

  • Finding a specific item in a cluttered desk

 

A child’s self esteem may suffer and their academic and play performance can be compromised if they demonstrate difficulty with completing these every day tasks.

 

 

EYE-HAND COORDINATION

 

Eye-hand coordination is the ability to coordinate eye and hand movements simultaneously. This skill involves proprioception (knowing where your body is in space) combined with processing visual input. If a child has difficulty with eye-hand coordination, they might have difficulty with:

 

  • Catching and throwing a ball

  • Reading and writing

  • Finger painting

  • Stringing beads

  • Building with blocks

 

DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES

 

Occupational therapy services address developmental milestones, including gross motor, fine motor, activities of daily living (ADLs), and social skills, that impact your child’s daily functioning and participation. Activities of daily living (ADL) are tasks that are a part of your child’s everyday routine including getting dressed, brushing teeth, feeding self, and more. Below are a list of some of the developmental milestones that your child should achieve within their age-range. An occupational therapy evaluation is recommended if your child is missing a majority of these skills.

 

0-6 months

Gross Motor:

  • Rolls from belly to back

  • Sits upright briefly with arm support

Fine Motor:

  • Brings hands to mouth when holding an object

  • Transfers objects from hand to hand

ADLs:

  • Holds bottle with one or both hands

  • Visually recognizes bottle and food

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Focused on attachment and bonding

  • Communicates simple emotions through facial expressions

 

6-12 months

Gross Motor:

  • Sits independently

  • Stands holding onto support

  • Rolls from back to belly

  • Crawls

Fine Motor:

  • Rolls balls

  • Holds or carries large ball with two hands

  • Grasps small objects with fingertips

  • Uses toys according to functional purpose

ADLs:

  • Takes off socks and shoes

  • Eats finger foods

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Imitates simple gestures

  • Shares during social play

 

12-18 months

Gross Motor:

  • Walks

  • Begins to run

Fine Motor:

  • Stacks 2 blocks

  • Scribbles with crayons

  • Uses two hands in play

ADLs:

  • Cooperates with dressing

  • Removes shoes and socks

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Begins peer interaction

  • Engages in pretend play

 

18-24 months

Gross Motor:

  • Kicks ball forward

  • Throws large ball at target

  • Jumps with both feet

Fine Motor:

  • Completes 4-5 piece puzzle

  • Builds tower with blocks

  • Strings beads

ADLs:

  • Brushes teeth with assistance

  • Scoops food with spoon and brings to mouth

  • Helps pull pants down

  • Finds armholes in pullover shirt

 

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Makes inanimate objects perform actions

 

2-3 years

Gross Motor:

  • Walks up and down steps independently

  • Balances on one foot for 3 seconds

Fine Motor:

  • Stacks 8-10 cubes

  • Snips paper with scissors

  • Imitates horizontal lines and circles

ADLs:

  • Establishes regular toileting schedule

  • Washes hands independently

  • Eats with fork

  • Feeds self with little to no spillage

  • Puts on shirt, socks, shoes

  • Removes loose clothing

  • Unbuttons large buttons

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Takes turns when playing with peers

 

3-5 years

Gross Motor:

  • Jumps, climbs, runs

  • Rides tricycle

  • Stands on one foot

Fine Motor:

  • Colors within lines

ADLs:

  • Dresses independently

  • Toilets independently

  • Begins brushing teeth and wiping nose

  • Combs/brushes hair

  • Fixes dry cereal and snacks for self

Play/Social Interaction:

  • Categorizes and sorts objects

  • Prefers play with other children

  • Aware of social aspects of conversation

 

                                                                   HOW CAN WE HELP?

 

Occupational therapy focuses on helping your child to build the necessary skills needed to participate in their occupation, PLAY.  It is often through play that children learn to make sense of the world around them. Play is an important tool that helps your child to develop physical coordination, emotional maturity, social skills to interact with their peers, and self-confidence to try new experiences, as well as explore new environments. Occupational therapy also focuses on developing fine motor, visual motor integration, visual perceptual, self-help, and sensory processing skills. Children do not like to just sit in therapy, so our occupational therapists strive to make therapy FUN by making therapy sessions feel like play. By engaging in motivating activities, such as board games, crafts, building obstacle courses, and much more, your child is developing the necessary physical, cognitive, and sensory skills that they need to perform daily tasks more independently while having fun!

 

Our Occupational Therapists provide comprehensive evaluations assessing the child as a whole, including areas of sensory processing/modulation, activities of daily living, fine motor skills, visual perception, eye-hand coordination, strength, handwriting, motor planning, and body awareness.

1726 Davenport Drive   New Port Richey, FL  34655

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