Occupational therapy (OT) is the process of reviewing aspects of your daily life that you find difficult to see if there is an easier way that you can do them. All aspects of your life can be assessed including your home, school or workplace.


You will have sessions with a qualified and regulated practitioner called an occupational therapist who will work with you to identify the difficulties you have with everyday tasks. They can then help you by either:

  • practising the activity in manageable stages with you
  • teaching you a different way to complete the activity
  • recommending changes that will make the activity easier
  • providing devices that make activities easier
  • assessing your needs to see if you might qualify for a ‘Disabled Facilities Grant’ towards the cost of adapting your home
  • referring you to other services e.g. speech and language therapy or employment-related advice centres


Occupational therapy can be helpful for both adults and children.


Occupational therapy can help you to live as independently as possible, at home, in employment or in education.


It is important not to choose equipment without being properly assessed as it can result in the equipment not helping or causing more problems than it solves.


The outcomes can be significant. Some activities will take practice which is not a quick or easy fix. Treatment success is ultimately in your hands and is dependent upon you following the advice of your therapist. Should you encounter any problems or changes in your condition, you will need to discuss this with your therapist.


Depending on your situation, you can get occupational therapy free through the NHS or social services.

You can:

  • speak to your GP or consultant about a referral
  • search for your local council to ask if you can get occupational therapy

You can also access this treatment privately. The Royal College of Occupational Therapists lists qualified and registered occupational therapists here.