The field of occupational therapy has been steadily growing and becoming more popular. Occupational therapy branches off of a similar concept of physical therapy except it involves strengthening and conditioning the mind to help overcome any diagnosed illnesses. The generalized theory is to provide an “occupation” or a duty/ responsibility to a designated patient. This approach is intended to guide patients to a stronger mind frame and adjust their emotions to a desired level of self worth and fulfillment.
Below are five facts you may not know about occupational therapy:
1. Children can also be treated by occupational therapy
There is a common misconception that occupational therapy is only designated for adults.
Surprisingly, occupational therapy can also aid children who suffer from serious diseases and illnesses.
However, occupational therapy for children differs from the practice on adults. Children obviously do not have jobs, so rather then a specific occupation being provided to evaluate their understanding and wherewithal, their comprehensibility is assessed through child-like activities such as playing. The child’s actions and mental capacity are analyzed and compared to normal levels of their age group.
2. Occupational Therapy has existed since the 1700’s
According to the book, Philosophical and Historical Roots of Occupational Therapy, two gentleman by the names of William Tuke and Phillipe Pinel both utilized principles and beliefs which later on revolutionized the general idea of occupational therapy.
Pinel had an approach called “Moral Treatment and Occupation,” which catered to mentally disabled patients by giving them a purpose through daily activities in order to relieve their emotional stress. His theory was to treat the patients emotions. William Tuke dreaded the ideas of insane asylums, he believed patients with unfortunate conditions should be treated with consideration and kindness.
3. Occupational Therapy almost died out
The field of occupational therapy seemed non existent during the 1900’s.The book, Philosophical and Historical Roots of Occupational Therapy, also reveals that the aftermath of the Civil War extracted initial priority away from mentally disabled patients. Fortunately, a nurse named Susan E. Tracey revived the concept of occupational therapy and later on developed the first training course in occupational therapy.
4. Requirements to be an Occupational Therapist
If you have determined that being an occupational therapist is a suitable career for you, then here’s what you should know. In order to become certified you must first obtain your Bachelor’s degree, followed by your Master’s degree. Once you have received your Master’s degree, you would have to graduate from an occupational therapy program. After all of the required schooling and field experience is obtained, you will finally have to take and pass the NBCOT exam.
5. Decent Annual Wages for Occupational Therapists
Essentially any career you decide to do should be chosen because of the desire for the profession and not just for the money. Occupational therapists seem to make a comfortable annual salary. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics by the United States Department of Labor, an occupational therapist earns nearly $75,000 annually.