Occupational Therapy and Cognitive Impairment Treatment
Occupational therapy is an invaluable intervention for patients living with dementia, helping them continue daily tasks and maintain their independence. This in turn enhances quality of life, relationships with family and friends, as well as relieving caregiver stress. Furthermore, occupational therapists work alongside patients to make their environment safe and suitable for their requirements – this may include finding a home that will accommodate long-term requirements.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recognize the critical role occupational therapy practitioners have in assessing functional cognition so Medicare beneficiaries receive quality post-acute care using only necessary Medicare resources. For this reason, occupational therapists use everyday task performance to gauge someone’s safety and ability to safely participate in essential ADLs and IADLs.
Occupational therapists take a client-centered approach when creating an intervention plan tailored to each patient’s individual needs. This may involve environmental modifications, assistive devices, and training for family members or caregivers.
During an initial visit, an occupational therapist assesses clients for their safety and effectiveness when engaging in essential ADLs. This includes initiating the activity, performing its steps, demonstrating interpersonal skill, as well as paying attention to external stimuli throughout the activity.
These evaluations take place in a clinical setting to assess how clients engage with others, their home environment and equipment. The assessment can be done either as part of an organized group or one-on-one setting.
The assessment may include tests for short-term memory, attention, visual processing and other performance areas that affect daily function. The outcomes are used to create the necessary environmental and personal care supports needed to enable clients to safely and effectively participate in ADLs and IADLs, as well as inform decision making regarding placement or discharge.
Functional cognition assessment provides occupational therapists with the data necessary to create effective and cost-effective environmental and personal care supports for their clients. It also assists clients and their families in making decisions regarding transitional care, discharge planning, and caregiver training.
Occupational therapists are specially trained in helping those living with dementia maintain their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. They can assist patients to increase physical strength, reduce symptoms of depression, increase mobility and develop coping skills for managing day-to-day challenges that come along with dementia. Furthermore, occupational therapists help patients hone communication abilities so they can stay in contact with loved ones more easily while relieving caregivers of some of the responsibility.
Occupational therapists can assist patients with dementia in performing basic activities of daily living (BADLs), such as brushing, bathing, grooming and dressing. They may also suggest ways to assist them with more complex tasks like meal preparation and transportation. At home they could modify the bathroom and suggest adaptive devices like grab bars for safety; additionally they might suggest equipment which will enhance quality of life such as power-riser recliner chairs or dementia clocks; additionally they provide assistance setting reminders on mobile phones so patients stay motivated throughout their day’s activities