April is Occupational Therapy Month. While it’s a therapeutic service that helps the elderly, some people don’t really know what occupational therapy is. Learn more and find out how occupational therapy helps seniors who want to age at home.
The goal of an occupational therapist is to assist people in doing the things they need to do each day. If there are things your parent wants to do but is unable, occupational therapists can often help with those goals, too.
A Look at How an Occupational Therapist Can Help
Living at home, you have activities of daily living (ADL). You also have instrumental activities of daily living IADL). The ADLs are the tasks you must do to survive, such as go to the bathroom and eat a meal. IADLs are the things you want to do independently. They include tasks like cooking a healthy meal, shopping for groceries, and scheduling appointments.
An occupational therapist can help with all of those tasks. If you want to grow old in your home, an occupational therapist can work with you and your family to determine what you need to do to stay safe. That may include teaching you how to remain mobile when you need a walker or how to use an extendable grabber tool to get hard to reach items.
Occupational therapists may work with your parent to help alleviate pain that keeps your parent from doing certain tasks. If your dad doesn’t button his shirt because of arthritis in the fingers, an occupational therapist may teach him to use hot or cold compresses to soothe the pain and make getting dressed easier.
Several chronic conditions that are helped by occupational therapy. They include Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis, diabetes, and stroke.
To work with an occupational therapist, talk to your mom or dad’s doctor first. You may need the referral if there are plans to get health insurance to cover some of the cost. The occupational therapist will assess your parent’s abilities and come up with strategies to help improve your parent’s abilities.
Caregivers Offer Additional Benefits
Occupational therapists help your parent learn how to best use existing skills to live independently. Caregivers fill in the gaps where things are simply too hard for your parent. If your parent’s vision has changed, the doctor may say driving is unsafe. An occupational therapist can’t magically restore eyesight. Caregivers can put your parent in the car and drive to the nearest store or doctor’s office.
Caregivers offer other services like assistance with personal care, meal preparation, and companionship. Call to discuss rates today.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering a Caregiver in Post, TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.