Since its inception, occupational therapy has used occupation to influence recovery from illness, to promote adaptation to disability, and to prevent deterioration. Occupational therapists believe that health derives from the pattern of occupations a person chooses across his/her lifespan.
SELF CARE OCCUPATIONS
In order to enable people to perform the occupations they find meaningful, occupational therapists may modify the occupation to suit the person's abilities. The therapists may also modify the environment so that the person can optimally engage in the occupation. Finally, the occupational therapist may assist the person in recovering skills necessary to achieve performance in the occupation.
Occupational therapy students learn how leisure, self-care, and work occupations can be interrupted by physical, mental, environmental and sociocultural conditions. OT students learn how biomechanical, neurological, psychological, environmental and sociocultural limitations can be remediated, or compensated for, through engaging in occupation. Therefore, occupational therapy students learn to facilitate an individual's ability to participate in the occupations that have been meaningful and health-promoting in that person's life.