Since we posted our first blog about Our Journey Through Occupational Therapy: The Diagnosis, we received a great number of responses and support from friends who have had similar experiences. We’ve heard from people who have used occupational therapy and also received recommendations from people that did not use therapy but offered tips and practices that might be helpful for Lady C.
We thank you! Community sharing was the main goal for this blog series.
As it stands, Lady C is still seeing her occupational therapist on a weekly basis. The therapist has provided us with feedback and also a plan of action including a “sensory diet” to assist.
What’s a sensory diet?
Occupational therapists use the term “sensory diet” to refer to a planned and scheduled program of sensory activities designed to satisfy the nervous system’s sensory needs throughout the day.
We received a sensory diet that will help Lady C for the following situations:
- “Proprioceptive Experiences” for when she is overwhelmed and needs to be calmed
- Hand strengthening
- Encouraging Hand Dominance
- Visual Motor Skills
Here are the some of the recommendations we received and many of these things we already do – we just do them more thoughtfully now – hope they help someone else!
These activities are also known as heavy work activities and can help improve focus and attention and improve body awareness:
Pushing and pulling
Crawling or wheelbarrowing
Holding or pushing the wall
Giving tight hugs
These activities help to build hand strength:
Crumpling paper into a ball
Using squirt toys
Use clothespins to hand things (for pincer strength)
These activities are key for Lady C because she switches hands quite a bit- Using her left hand to write and switching to the right for other activities.
Stirring batter and holding bowl with other hand
Using helper hand to stabilize paper when writing
Picking up small objects with chopsticks
Pouring sand from one container to another
VISUAL MOTOR SKILLS
Playing board games
Tracing and coloring pictures
Doing word searches
PLEASE SHARE ANY OTHER SUGGESTIONS YOU MIGHT HAVE – LOVE HEARING AND SHARING WITH YOU!
Next up for the blog series – how we integrate the sensory diet into our daily routines.