People across the world participate in recovery programs every day. Dedicated people in professions, such as occupational therapy, work to help each person regain his or her ability to engage in everyday activities. One wishing to pursue a career in occupational therapy would first need to evaluate the career and the significant effects on themselves and the clients.
Occupational therapy made its first appearance in a modern-day setting during the 18th century; however, occupational therapy dates back to 100 BC. The United States medical system adopted occupational therapy in the 19th century. In 1910, occupational therapy became a realized profession. Then, the main focus was working with individuals to get them to a fully functional state. Around 1930, standards of practice were developed for occupational therapists (OT’s). The career continues to evolve and change as new illnesses and disabilities arise. Even with all the changes, the main focus remains intact: helping people.
Some primary personality traits, characteristics, and qualities are associated with the job of an occupational therapist. One must be patient, organized, empathetic, and energized. Patience, being one of the most important, will help to work clients through problems in a calm, suitable manner. Empathy is also important. In order to gain a clint’s trust, they must believe their OT truly understands how they feel and what they are going through.
Strong people skills are a must for one with a career in occupational therapy. Working with people is a daily task and often times these people will be dealing with some troublesome aspect of their lives. An OT must also have great problem solving skills. One must be able to talk through problems with a client as well as devise a way to solve the problem.
Education is a highly important part of becoming an OT. A master’s degree, preferably in a health profession, from an accredited institution is required for all who seek a career as an occupational therapist. Those who are considering a degree in occupational therapy may want to take classes such as biology, psychology, and anatomy.
After completing a master’s degree, one must take a national certification exam. Prior to this exam, courses are offered at various school across the nation in which one will have the chance to experience the various specialities within occupational therapy. Those who pass this exam will become a registered occupational therapist and will have a greater range of job opportunities.
The main goal of an occupational therapist is to improve the life quality of their clients. One may work with many different people in a variety of settings. Occupational therapists work to help clients recover or maintain daily skills. Fine motor skills and reasoning abilities are main focuses but an OT may also work to address a permanent loss of function.
On a day to day basis, occupational therapists will help patients recover or improve the skills the do not currently...