Weight’s impact on ADLs (Activities of Daily Living)
Updated: Nov 13
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Welcome back to OT 4 ME! At OT 4 ME we specialize in helping children embrace healthy lifestyles by making it FUN, so they can enjoy being a kid, without being limited by their weight or body image.
Last week we introduced our newest blog series – How Weight Impacts Occupation. We wanted to share this series because many people don’t realize the effect that weight can have on the activities their child does every day. Today, in the first post of the series, we are going to talk about Activities of Daily Living, also known as ADLS.
When most people think about occupational therapy, they think about ADLS. ADLS are the basic activities that you do to care for your body (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2014). They are essential for us to survive and be. The main ADLS are dressing, grooming, showering, toileting, and feeding/eating.
A child’s weight MAY impact how well a child is able to complete any of these activities.
1. Getting dressed – decreased balance may impact a child’s ability to stand on one foot to put on pants/shoes/socks. Decreased flexibility may also impact his/her ability to lift arms overhead while putting on a shirt. He/she may also have a difficult time finding clothing that fits appropriately.
2. Grooming – children may avoid grooming activities due to decreased self-esteem or pain as a result of weight. This can also impact his/her ability to stand in one position for a long time. Decreased flexibility may hinder a child from reaching certain areas to groom.
3. Showering – decreased balance may place a child at risk for falls in the shower. Care must also be taken to ensure that all areas are cleaned to prevent skin breakdown.
4. Toileting – Ability to sit and stand from the toilet due to balance and strength may be impacted, as well as reaching around his/her backside to wipe.
5. Feeding/Eating – Increased size of a child’s hands/fingers and/or decreased hand strength may lead to difficulty with holding utensils. There may be an imbalance with types of food that a child consumes. For example, a child may have difficult eating fruits or vegetables. For more info on this check out our E-book!
But, there’s good news. If you child has a disruption in one of these occupations, WE CAN HELP! All you need to do is reach out to us for a free discovery visit! During this 20-minute visit, we’ll have time to chat about your concerns and how OT 4 ME can help. We offer Telehealth services to all of Florida!
If you are ready to get started right away, give us a call at 561-223-1620 or email Samantha@theot4me.com. I’d be honored to work with your child!
Want to do some more reading? Check out our "Get Your Kids Moving" blog series.
We’re looking forward to discuss our next occupation, Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLS), next week!
I am looking forward to hearing from you!
1. American Occupational Therapy Association. (2014). Occupational therapy practice framework: Domain and process (3rd ed.). American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 68, S1–S48. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2014.682006
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