Signs Your Child Needs Occupational Therapy

Amisha Gandhi

4 May 2022

As a parent, you only want the best for your child. So when your child is struggling in school, at home, or in the community—or you suspect something is different about how your child is developing—you want help immediately.

Occupational therapy is a type of therapy that helps children, teens, and adults do all of the basic things we need to do in our everyday lives: from eating, dressing, and bathing to playing, playing with friends, and being part of the community. 

So how do you know if your bundle of joy needs occupational therapy to help them grow to their full potential?

1. If They Have Developmental Delay

In some cases, children are born with developmental delay or a disability that causes them to learn new skills more slowly than their peers. This is why children with disabilities may need occupational therapy.

Some developmental disabilities are defined by the terms used to describe their medical condition, such as autism, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury, or spina bifida. 

Other developmental delays or disabilities are caused by factors other than medical problems—such as intellectual disability, poor vision or hearing, or a severe brain injury. No matter how major or minor the condition, occupational therapy can help your child overcome their differences.

2. If They Struggle with Fine Motor Skills

All children must learn to use their fingers, hands, and arms to play, grasp small objects, and manipulate objects within their reach. These fine motor skills help children develop the range of motion needed to write, draw, and use a computer.

Occupational therapy helps children learn to perform everyday tasks without struggling. For example, an occupational therapist can show a child how to use a spoon to eat food instead of using his fingers, or how to hold a pencil correctly to write.

3. If They Struggle with Gross Motor Skills

Gross motor skills help children learn to move their bodies in a variety of ways. For example, children need to learn how to walk, run, jump, climb, and balance.

Occupational therapy can help children with gross motor skills perform everyday tasks that require balance, strength, or coordination. For instance, a child who is having trouble eating may need occupational therapy to help strengthen their arms and hands.

4. If They Have a Hard Time with Visual Processing

Every child has to process the things they see to make sense of the world around them. The ability to process visual information is a skill that occupational therapists help children learn.

This can be especially helpful if a child has a hard time paying attention or sitting still in school. Occupational therapists can help children learn how to pay attention to the things they see and take in the visual information they see.

The Bottom Line: The Importance of Occupational Therapy in Your Child’s Life

Life is full of challenges. Whether your child has a developmental delay, fine motor skills challenges, a gross motor skills challenge, or struggles with processing visual information, occupational therapy can help.

Occupational therapy is a vital tool that helps children excel at school, at home, and in the community. If you are concerned about your child and you think they may need occupational therapy, do not hesitate to get them the help they need.

Are You Looking for Occupational Therapists for Kids in Blacktown?

At Cloud Nine Therapy Services, we have highly-qualified paediatric occupational therapists who can help children of all ages overcome and manage their difficulties with different activities, sports and play.