In the world of occupational therapy, therapists and assistants rely on an incredibly wide range of specialized equipment and tools to assist their patients. Some types of occupational therapy supplies are designed to help adults who have suffered a debilitating injury to relearn or adapt to modified ways of doing simple tasks involved in everyday living. Other types of occupational therapy supplies are geared toward children to help them prepare for challenges that lie ahead.
Some of the most important occupational therapy supplies to be found among a therapist’s arsenal are assessment tools. These may be in the form of questionnaire forms with which to evaluate patients, or as bound documentation intended to serve as a resource manuals. Both provide the therapist with a solid foundation to assess an individual’s disabilities in terms of sensory processing, fine and gross motor development, receptive and expressive language skills, visual acuity, socialization skills, and various other markers. They also help the therapist to determine the best course of therapy.
In terms of children, many types of occupational therapy supplies are designed for early intervention and remediation. For example, some children have difficulty expressing themselves, either due to impaired socialization, speech problems, or physical challenges. The therapeutic tools are often presented in the form of board games, activity cards, or electronic gadgets that are enjoyable and engaging. However, while they may be simply fun to the child, they also encourage social interaction, verbal expression, fine motor skill development, and some even teach self-calming techniques. In addition, some occupational therapy supplies are designed for children with specific needs, such as games and activities that considers sensory defensiveness that is associated with autistic disorders.
Occupational therapy supplies introduced into rehabilitation programs for adults generally address tools to make everyday tasks easier and to promote independence. For instance, it is often necessary to provide an adult recovering from surgery with modified equipment, such as aids to assist bathing, grooming, and dressing. There is also a wide variety of occupational therapy supplies available to help the adult around the house, such as extension “grabbers” to retrieve items from a shelf, modified kitchen and dining utensils, and general mobility aids. Of course, occupational therapists also assist certain adults in building the cognitive and functional skills needed to manage a budget, follow instructions to prepare a meal, etc.
The type and volume of occupational therapy supplies required for any program depends on the therapist and his or her working environment. For instance, some therapists specialize in working with children in a school or residential facility. Others work in clinical settings with the mentally challenged, while others specialize in providing services to the elderly.