Occupational Therapy

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Occupational therapy (OT) is a branch of medical health care that helps people of all ages with physical, sensory, or cognitive problems. OT may help them regain independence in all areas of their lives.

Occupational therapists try to reduce barriers that affect a person's emotional, social, and physical needs. To achieve this, they use everyday activities, exercises, and other therapies

With respect to a child, his/her primary occupation is to Play & Learn. OT helps kids involve in play, improves their school performance, and aids their daily activities thereby boosting their self-esteem and sense of accomplishment.

With OT, kids can:

  • Develop fine motor skills so they grasp and release toys and develop good handwriting skills
  • Improve eye–hand coordination so they play and do needed school skills such as catch or hit a ball with bat and copy from a blackboard
  • Learn basic life skills such as bathing, getting dressed, brushing teeth, and self-feeding.
  • Learn positive behaviors and social skills by practicing how they manage frustration and anger.
  • Get specialized/modified equipment to help improve their independence. These include wheelchairs, splints, bathing equipment, and communication aids.

Who Might Need Occupational Therapy?

OT can help kids and teens who have:
  • Birth injuries or birth defects
  • Sensory processing disorders
  • Traumatic injuries to the brain or spinal cord
  • Learning problems
  • Autism (ASD)
  • Attention deficits with Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
  • Mental health or behavioral problems
  • Broken bones or other orthopedic injuries
  • Developmental delays
  • Multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, and other chronic illnesses

How Do Physical/Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy Differ?

Physical/Physiotherapy and occupational therapy both help improve kids' quality of life, but there are differences.

Physiotherapy (PT) helps with:
  • Pain
  • Strength
  • Joint range of motion
  • Endurance
  • Gross motor skills (large-muscle movements made with the arms, legs, feet, or entire body)

Occupational therapy (OT) helps with:
  • Fine motor skills (small-muscle movements made with the hands,fingers, and toes, such as grasping)
  • Visual-perceptual skills
  • Cognitive (thinking) skills
  • Sensory-processing problems


Sensory integration therapy aims to help children with sensory processing issues (also known as “sensory integration disorder”) by exposing them to sensory stimulation in a structured, repetitive way. The theory behind it is that over time, the brain will adapt and allow kids to process and react to sensations more efficiently.

Sensory integration (SI) therapy is provided by a specially trained occupational therapist (OT). The OT determines through a thorough evaluation whether your child would benefit from SI therapy. In traditional SI therapy, the OT exposes a child to sensory stimulation through repetitive activities.

The OT gradually makes activities more challenging and complex. The idea is that through repetition, the child’s nervous system will respond in a more “organized” way to sensations and movement.

Sensory Integration Therapy and Sensory Diets

OT use this type of exposure as part of a more extensive “sensory diet” treatment. It includes not only things like balance treatments, movement therapy and structured exposure to sensory input, but also carefully designed and tailored physical activities and accommodations.

The routine of activities in a sensory diet fits your child’s exact needs and schedule. They can be done at therapy sessions as well as at home, under your supervision, via home based therapy plans provided by us.

The Sensory System explained

5 Senses
  • Visual sensitivity - poor/no eye contact; peripheral vision
  • Auditory sensitivity - poor/no response to name; sensitive to sounds
  • Olfactory sensitivity - smell obsession
  • Gustatory sensitivity - mouthing objects; chewing difficulties
  • Tactile sensitivity - hair/nails cutting uncomfortable
3 hidden Senses
  • Vestibular System Sensitivity (Related to body balance) - Hyperactivity;Running in circles; spinning wheels/objects
  • Proprioceptive System Sensitivity (Related to body positioning) - Low/poor body tone; walking on toes; stimming
  • Interoceptive System Sensitivity (Related to internal organs) - Sense of hunger, thirst etc.

Sensory issues are commonly observed in kids with Autism (ASD), ADHD & some other neuro-developmental disorders. If you recently discovered your child has sensory processing issues, you can get in touch with our Child Developmental & Occupational Therapists for the same.