Every year on October 27th, World Occupational Therapy Day promotes the mission and goals of occupational therapy. The day also increases awareness of occupational therapists and their global impact. Occupational therapists provide treatment to injured or disabled patients. They also work with children with special needs or who need help acquiring certain skills. Occupational therapists recommend equipment and home modifications necessary for seniors or those with disabilities.
When is Occupational Therapy Month?
One of the primary goals of occupational therapy is to help patients improve their fine motor skills. Improving these skills helps them attain or regain skills necessary for everyday life. These skills might include dressing, brushing teeth, writing notes, and working on the computer. Occupational therapists also help patients to react appropriately to sensory input. This skill is known as self-regulation. One more goal of an occupational therapist is to improve safety in their patient’s home or primary living space.
Some of the benefits of occupational therapy include the following:
- Helps to overcome struggles of everyday life
- Improves memory
- Aids with vision loss
- Assists caregivers
- Assists with home modifications
There are an estimated 500,000 occupational therapists in the world. Many countries recognize occupational therapy as a profession. These countries include the United States, Canada, Australia, Thailand, South Africa, Italy, Ireland, and Costa Rica. These occupational therapists work in a variety of settings. These settings include hospitals, schools, nursing homes, and home health services.
How to Observe World Occupational Therapy Day
On this day, occupational therapists and OT students volunteer their services to individuals or organizations. Other ways occupational therapists and students observe this day include:
- Fundraising walks.
- Providing safety checks in the homes of aging adults.
- Repairing playgrounds to improve childhood safety.
- Thank an occupational therapists for all that they do to help others.
- Encourage a young person to think about becoming an occupational therapist.
- Research all that an occupational therapist does.
World Occupational Therapy Day History
The World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) launched World Occupational Therapy Day in 2010. Many countries celebrate occupational therapy week or month in October, which is why the WFOT chose October 27th. The WFOT comprises over 100 national occupational therapy professional organizations across the globe. They believe occupational therapy positively influences health, welfare, education, and vocation on an international scale.