Using occupational therapy to age in place

Occupational therapy plays an important role in health and recovery for people of all ages, but for seniors it could be the key to staying at home rather than moving to an assisted living facility. With the help of an occupational therapist, seniors can age in place safely, even when they are facing health issues. Here is what you need to know about occupational therapy and how it can be used to help seniors stay in familiar surroundings.

What is occupational therapy?
Occupational therapy helps people learn new ways of doing everyday activities. It is particularly useful for people who have a physical impairment that affects strength or mobility, as through therapy, people can perfect different ways of accomplishing tasks that work for their needs.

Occupational therapists work with people in a number of different capacities. Some of the things they do include:

  • Helping people learn how to do basic tasks again after a stroke
  • Helping children with autism adapt to classroom settings
  • Helping people who have experienced a disability do tasks in a different way

How can occupational therapists help seniors?
For many seniors and their families, the question of remaining at home versus living in an assisted living facility looms large. For seniors who want to age in place, occupational therapy can play a major part. There are many ways occupational therapists can help seniors and their families, such as:

  • Evaluating the home to look for safety risks
  • Evaluating the movement, balance, and mobility of seniors to determine if aging in place is safe
  • Making recommendations for modifications that can make the home safer, such as additional lighting or grab rails

Occupational therapists can also help seniors learn how to navigate the home and do everyday activities safely.

Good Samaritan Hospital’s Rehabilitation Center in San Jose provides comprehensive therapy and rehabilitation options for patients of all ages. Learn more about our occupational therapy program or request a referral for rehabilitation services by calling (888) 724-2362.

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