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University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust

Children's Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapists (OTs) are interested in participation in occupations (activities) that are meaningful to an individual. We look at how the person, environment and occupation work together to enable a person to take part in the activities they want to do. This allows us to gain a overall view of a child’s wants and needs and promote independence in occupations that are really important to them.

Some things we may consider:

Person: the age of the child, the child's motivation for occupations, the child’s likes and dislikes, the child's motor or sensory skills and the child’s disability or medical conditions

Environment: school, home, nursery, play parks, groups and social support

Occupation: playing, washing, dressing, eating, handwriting, using scissors, riding a bike, swimming and sports

Where do we work?

The therapists carry out their work primarily in the child development center, hospital, school and nursery settings. Services are occasionally provided to home settings dependent on a child’s therapeutic needs.

At the Child Development Centre we specialise in working with children from birth to 19 years of age (if the young person is still in full time education).

What to expect in an Occupational Therapy appointment?

We will:

  • Assess the child's participation strengths and difficulties through a range of different methods
  • Information will be gathered from the child (if possible), parents and carers regarding their current abilities and goals
  • From the information gathered an intervention plan will be decided, this may involve home/school advice or further Occupational Therapy sessions; 1:1 or in a group.
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