Occupational therapy can benefit youth and adolescents who are experiencing challenges in their home, school, work, or community environments. Occupational therapists can help in these areas through therapy, skill building, equipment recommendations, task adaptations, and environmental modifications. 

OT may be of benefit to youth/adolescents who experience three or more of the following difficulties: 

  • difficulties focusing attention/hard to shift to next task 
  • tends to lean on arms or slumps at desk 
  • needs more practice than others to learn new skills 
  • has difficulty with written work (e.g., timely written output, clarity of printing) 
  • uses writing tools with heavy pressure, hand tires quickly, often dislikes doing written work 
  • dislikes jumping, swings, or having feet off the ground 
  • overly active, unable to slow down
  • difficulty paying attention to or following instructions 
  • low self-esteem, lack of confidence 
  • disorganized, difficulty with planning and organizing 
  • experiences frequent anxiety or depression 
  • overreacts to touch, taste, sound, odour 
  • avoids sports activities or gym 
  • finds it difficult to make or keep friends 
  • avoids or has difficulties with social events/activities  

Occupational therapy services may be appropriate for those who have: 

  • Learning Disabilities 
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder 
  • Attention Deficit Disorder 
  • Sensory Processing Disorder 
  • Developmental Coordination Disorder 
  • Down Syndrome 
  • Attachment Disorders 
  • Visual Processing Disorder 
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
  • Mental health challenges 
  • and developmental delays