Occupational Therapy for Seniors
One of the toughest aspects individuals face as they age is losing the ability to accomplish daily tasks that were once simple. As a result, seniors tend to become frustrated, confused, and embarrassed, desiring to regain the independence they once possessed. At Abbey Senior Health in O’Fallon, MO, we understand the process of aging, and offer a variety of personalized programs catered to each resident.
Occupational Therapy for Seniors
One of the toughest aspects individuals face as they age is losing the ability to accomplish daily tasks that were once simple. As a result, seniors tend to become frustrated, confused, and embarrassed, desiring to regain the independence they once possessed. At Abbey Senior Health in O’Fallon, we understand the process of aging, and offer a variety of personalized programs catered to each resident.
What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapy is the practice of assisting individuals of all ages, from children to elderly adults, in developing, maintaining, or recovering the skills required to complete everyday tasks. Various types of occupational therapies exist, depending on each person’s specific needs. In many situations, occupational therapists (OTs) work with seniors following an illness, injury, or memory loss.
Rather than focusing on what a senior is unable to do, OTs place emphasis on what they can do. Often acting as an advocate for each individual, the professionals help them overcome their physical limitations, which enables them to live a normal life. When you enroll your loved one in an occupational therapy program at Abbey Senior Health, they will receive care that is best suited for their emotional, environmental, and psychological needs.
Occupational Therapy Activities for Elderly Residents
Just as the types of occupational therapy differ based upon each resident’s needs, so too do the activities and exercises implemented. However, the goal remains the same, which is to teach new techniques for making daily tasks easier. Example activities include:
- Range of motion exercises to increase mobility and decrease stiffness and pain
- Installing mobility aids, such as walk-in bathtubs and grab bars, to maintain independence
- Color-coding items for those who struggle with vision loss
- Memory-enhancing activities, such as crossword puzzles and matching games, to help those with memory loss
- Placing stop signs or gates within a resident’s living environment to prevent wandering
Benefits of Occupational Therapy
For many aging adults, the ability to partake in normal daily activities, such as eating, bathing, and walking, can be tiresome. When they are unable to perform daily tasks, they are less likely to engage in other activities, such as social gatherings and hobbies, which can quickly lead to feelings of depression and isolation. That’s why the role of occupational therapy is so important – at Abbey Senior Health, our programs provide many benefits to residents, including:
Although falling may seem like a minor inconvenience to a majority of people, it can be detrimental to an elderly individual. As seniors age, their muscles deteriorate and their bones weaken, leading to a greater risk of severe injury from a fall. In some cases, elderly individuals may not recover. The OTs at Abbey Senior Health teach residents various techniques that can help prevent falls from occurring. Balance and muscle-building exercises allow seniors to keep their bodies strong.
Providing a Positive Outlook on Life
Through occupational therapy, elderly residents are able to accept that although their mind and body are changing, they can still live the life they desire. Even small improvements in areas such as basic motor skills, dexterity, strength, and range of motion can make all the difference in a senior’s lifestyle. OTs assist seniors in building the confidence needed to make the most out of their golden years.
Assisting with Vision Loss
Although a simple visit to the eye doctor will likely fix many individuals’ vision issues, the same cannot be said for seniors. The elderly adults who suffer from eye diseases or vision loss are also likely to struggle with daily tasks. OTs can assist seniors through activities that improve pattern detection, perceptual vision, and overall visual awareness. Doing so not only strengthens their ability to visualize their surroundings, but it also allows them to maintain their independent lifestyle.
Helping with Memory Loss
Occupational therapy is imperative in the beginning stages of memory loss. Therapists are specially trained to analyze a client’s cognitive abilities and implement behavioral interventions to help address their changing personalities. Additionally, an OT can assist in adapting a senior’s living space for safety, which allows them to maximize their remaining skills and helps them maintain independence. In later stages of memory loss, therapists can still help by focusing on simplifying activities or providing sensory stimulation (such as music) to improve quality of life.
Improving Overall Health and Wellness
Occupational therapy for seniors can greatly improve mental health and life satisfaction. The unique holistic and educational approach therapists take when assisting seniors allows them to redesign their lives, and thus experience a healthier way of living. The ability to still accomplish everyday activities greatly reduces feelings of depression and isolation, as well as allows elderly individuals to both pursue hobbies and attend social gatherings.
Why Abbey Senior Health?
Each resident at Abbey Senior Health requires specific types of care. That’s why we offer a variety of senior care options that may be combined according to your loved one’s needs. Whether they require short-term rehab, such as physical therapy after a fall, or only respite care for a limited period of time, rest assured that our well-trained staff will assist them in the best way possible. Conveniently located in the heart of O’Fallon, Missouri, Abbey Senior Health helps your loved one enjoy their golden years.
Get Your Loved One the Care They Need Today
The transition to assisted living or independent living can be overwhelming and exhausting. If you’re seeking a senior living community for your loved one that provides the specialized care and safety they need, look no further than Abbey Senior Health. Our skilled nursing care and variety of independent living options provide a full continuum of services in a faith-based environment. Your senior will receive the attention and care they need to live a comfortable, healthy, and independent life. Contact us today to learn more about our services!