How can occupational therapists (OTs) help children with weight gain and/or obesity?
Updated: Nov 13
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South Florida Occupational therapists can offer a lot of support for kids diagnosed with overweight or childhood obesity.
By the time many parents arrive at the first session, they are frustrated and confused about how to help their child. They’ve usually been told several times, by many different health professionals, that their child needs to “eat healthy,” “work out,” and “lose weight.” Although they’ve been told WHAT to do, many families struggle with the HOW.
Our job as occupational therapists, is to help with “how.”
We start by breaking down your child’s personal goals, your goals for them, and your doctor’s recommendations. Then, we figure out how to make those goals happen for YOUR CHILD. Occupational therapists do not use a one-size-fits all approach. Instead, we create a plan that works for YOUR LIFE.
What makes OT unique?
Pediatric Occupational therapists help kids do the activities they want and need to do every day. We called these activities “occupations.” Some of the occupations of childhood include eating, dressing, physical activity, school, play, and connecting with friends.
Occupational therapists do not focus on “weight loss.” Instead, we focus on the end goals, their occupations. For example:
· A child wants to become more fit so they can play on a sports team - OTs can work on increasing their strength, coordination, and finding free sports teams in the community. Maybe they want to find
· A child wants to lose weight because they will feel more comfortable socializing with friends - OTs can work on strategies to increase confidence and stress management.
· A parent wants their child to eat more vegetables for nutrients – OTs can help find ways to make vegetables taste good for THAT child. (Check out our Fruit and Veggie Filled Mickey Ice Cream)
The best part is….that we do this while having FUN! That way, we make healthy something that your child WANTS to do.
Wondering if occupational therapy would be helpful for your child?
Let’s chat! I offer free phone consults to all families 24/7. I can’t wait to talk to you!
Don’t forget to check out the “Get Your Kids Moving” blog series, for some fun ideas on ways to encourage your kids to move and exercise.
What else would you like to see on the blog? I am constantly working on new content and am looking for ideas. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, call or text 561-223-1620, or direct message me through any social media outlet to share your ideas. You can also connect with me through the “Contact Us” form on our website.
Let’s make healthy fun,
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