Pediatric Occupational Therapy assists children in the development of self-care, play and work skills.Self-care skills include feeding, dressing, hygiene and self-regulation. Play includes goal-directedactivities, crafts, games and imaginative/symbolic activities. Work includes educational and pre-vocational activities. In order for the child to adapt and continue to develop, sensory processing(response to tactile, auditory, vestibular, olfactory and gustatory) must be intact.
4 months – infant’s hand should be open.
5 months – reaching and grasping of toys begins.
7 months – transfer of toys from hand to hand.
10-12 months – neat pincer grasp/finger feeding small pieces of food.
16-18 months – uses both hands in midline (one to hold, one to manipulate)/holds and drinks from a cup.
20-30 months – imitates drawing simple strokes/undresses with assistance.
36-48 months – uses adult-like grasp with writing tools/dresses and undresses independently including buttons.
Developmental Warning Signs
Sensory Processing Disorder
child is difficult to calm; prefers to be left alone or becomes very aggressive with other children; eyecontact is poor; upset with tactile play (may even gag when touching/smelling wet/messy items);becomes stiff and resistive to imposed movement; difficulty attending
both hands or one hand remains clenched beyond 4-5 months of age; infant/toddler uses one hand exclusively or skills of one hand obviously higher developed than other; child is difficult to dress because arms are stiff and resistive to movement; difficulty reaching and grasping toys
Visual motor/Visual Perceptual Difficulties
unable to complete simple puzzle; poor handwriting(number/letter reversals; difficulty with spacing and alignment; does not use left to right progression when writing); difficulty with scanning and depth perception; difficulty drawing/copying shapes and letters.