Occupational therapy uses activities and tools that teach your autistic family member how to improve her quality of life. The repetition of occupational therapy can be particularly helpful, especially with new skills and techniques. Tailoring this therapy to your family member’s needs is going to get her the best results, including helping her to meet her goals around independence.
Developing and Practicing Coordination
Some autistic people have difficulty knowing where their bodies or parts of their bodies are in relation to other items. There are also coordination difficulties that make these issues more pronounced. Activities that seem unrelated, like putting together puzzles, can actually help with these problems because they help to develop greater coordination and awareness of the body in space.
Playing to Learn
One of the more important aspects of occupational therapy is that it doesn’t have to feel boring or like therapy at all. Finding ways to incorporate fun and play into learning skills that are difficult brings a different perspective to that task. It’s a lot easier to learn and to retain what’s learned through play than it is to learn in ways that do not incorporate fun at all.
Practicing Activities that Help with Independence
Your family member may need help with a variety of different activities now. Prompts may be necessary for things like brushing hair, brushing teeth, remembering to shower, and more. If your family member’s goal involves becoming more independent, it’s important to move away from external prompts if possible. Practicing these activities and doing things like habit stacking, which involves flowing naturally from one task into another, can help significantly.
Adapting to Transitions
Transitioning from one activity to another can be difficult for autistic adults. Habit stacking works, but it does involve transitioning from one task to the next. By finding adaptive tools and strategies and learning to employ them in a safe setting, your family member can start to gain positive results from what she’s learning. As a result, it becomes easier for her to flow with her routines, which can in turn help her to be more independent.
Finding the right autism resources for your family member can make all the difference in helping her to be more independent. Some of these tools may not allow her to live on her own just yet, but they become building blocks as she works toward meeting a goal of living more independently in the future than she does now.
If you are considering autism resources in Speedway, IN, please call the caring staff at RSI Cares. Serving Greater Indianapolis Area. Call for Immediate Info & Assistance: 317-471-0750.