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11 Products for At-Home Pediatric Occupational Therapy

11 Products for At-Home Pediatric Occupational Therapy

11 Products for At-Home Pediatric Occupational Therapy

Key Takeaways

  • Pediatric occupational therapy can help children with neurological disorders, orthopedic injuries, sensory integration, developmental delays, and more
  • After assessing range of motion and fine motor skills, an occupational therapist will consult with the parents to develop a customized plan of at-home therapy
  • Balance and coordination activities can help children develop gross motor skills while finger exercises help improve fine motor skills
  • To help the child achieve his or her treatment goals, here are 11 products to help improve balance, coordination, and sensory processing

Top Products in This Article

Occupational therapy can make a huge difference in the lives of people of all ages, including children. During therapy, your child will learn functional skills for play, school tasks, and other daily activities. However, pediatric occupational therapists work not only with the child who needs treatment, but also with the family. A child’s caretakers play a vital role in successfully developing a treatment program.

To help you prepare for home pediatric occupational therapy, here are 11 products for you to choose from!

How does pediatric occupational therapy work?

Here’s what you need to know about pediatric occupational therapy. It helps children learn to independently perform gross and fine motor skills. It is highly encouraged for children with various circumstances including birth defects, acute trauma, developmental delays, cerebral palsy, and spina bifida. Children with shortened attention span, learning disabilities, and/or sensory processing disorders can also benefit from occupational therapy.

The occupational therapist will assess range of motion, strength, fine motor skills, and sensory integration skills. Following the evaluation, your occupational therapist will work with you to develop a customized plan of care. The goal of your child’s therapy program is to help improve, sustain, or restore their ability to function.

You can learn more in The Complete Beginner's Guide to Occupational Therapy.

Need some help planning for this at-home therapy program? We’ve got you covered with a wide range of products!

5 Products to Develop Gross Motor Skills

Gross motor skills refer to skills which include many large muscle groups and the whole body, like walking and jumping. These skills can help a child reduce the likelihood of injury. Your child’s occupational therapist will plan activities that focus on improving balance and coordination. Balance and coordination help children build their core muscles, which allows them to remain stable during movement and when sitting.

    1. Resistance Bands

Resistance bands work your child’s muscles like weights do – the muscles contract to generate force to stabilize and control the desired movement. These movements ultimately improve muscle strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, and range of motion. The more you stretch the band, the more intense the resistance gets, and the harder the exercise becomes.

TheraBand Resistance Band Beginner Kit

TheraBand Resistance Band Beginner Kit product package with 3 different colored resistance bands in front

    2. Balance Pads

Balance pads help improve balance, strength, joint stability, and coordination by adding challenge to an existing workout and aiding in rehabilitation. The dense foam pad responds to pressure evenly, making it easier to regain balance and stability during exercise.

AIREX Balance Pad

Person helping child balance on blue AIREX Balance Pad

    3. Exercise Mats

Exercise mats provide users with a controlled stable base during balance exercises. The sturdy mat enhances grip for better control and stability and cushions the spine and joints. The non-slip material also helps to prevent slipping and potential injuries.

TheraBand Exercise Mats

Two rolled up TheraBand exercise mats in green and blue

    4. Saddle Rolls

Saddle rolls are made to encourage the development of muscles, coordination, and balance. Available in a variety of size options, each inflatable roll ensures easier control than traditional exercise balls due to the limited forward and backward motion.

CanDo Saddle Rolls

5 peanut shaped saddle rolls in different colors and sizes

    5. Exercise Balls

Great for balance, core strengthening, and posture exercise, exercise balls are safe to lie, sit or kneel on while exercising the core, back, shoulder, and leg muscles. Simply sitting on an exercise ball engages the stabilizer muscles in your core. The anti-burst construction provides a comfortable low-impact workout suitable for all fitness levels.

TheraBand PRO Series Exercise Balls

Red TheraBand Pro Series Exercise Ball

6 Products to Develop Fine Motor Skills

Fine motor skills involve the use of small muscles in our hands, wrists, fingers, feet and toes. Developing those muscles allows actions like grasping, holding, pressing, or using a pincer grip (holding something between the index and thumb). Hand exercisers allow your child to develop these important skills.

Does your child have trouble with sensory processing? When children struggle to process sensory information, they may overreact or underreact to things they hear, see, taste, touch, or smell. That can lead kids to have a meltdown or become hyperactive. You can learn more about sensory tools and toys here.

Your occupational therapist will recommend a series of activities tailored to help your child develop fine motor skills as well as provide the sensory input they need to stay focused. These products may be used during therapy or while following along with the provided exercises at home.

Therapy Putty

Jar of red Therapy Putty

Egg Shaped Hand Exercisers

4 different colored egg shaped hand exercisers

Temper Foam Blocks

Light green rectangular foam block

Bead Sequencing Set

Colorful bead sequencing set with various beads in different shapes, sizes and colors

Pegboard

Peg It Pegboard

Edu-Blocks

Child playing with set of colorful Edu-blocks

Conclusion

With pediatric occupational therapy, children who are injured or who have certain health conditions can reach their full potential and function better at home, in school, and in other environments. A pediatric occupational therapist will use a variety of approaches to help your child develop gross and fine motor skills. However, occupational therapy also involves the help of the child’s caretakers while living at home. Using the products we’ve suggested in this article, help your child achieve their therapy goals!

References:

1. Breithart, Devon. (2019). What is Pediatric Occupational Therapy? My OT Spot. Retrieved from https://bit.ly/3dN5Dh2

2. The Understoood Team. (2021). Gross Motor Skills: What You Need to Know. Understood. Retrieved from https://u.org/3cY09ka

3. The Understoood Team. (2021). Fine Motor Skills: What You Need to Know. Understood. https://u.org/3cYoNRF

Medical Disclaimer: The information provided on this site, including text, graphics, images and other material, are for informational purposes only and are not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other healthcare professional with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.