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The Many Ways Occupational Therapy Can Help After a TBI

The Many Ways Occupational Therapy Can Help After a TBI

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Hey guys, it's Adam. A recently returning Afghanistan veteran is going to be starting occupational therapy soon and he reached out to me. He's a little bit nervous, doesn't know what to expect, so I just want to share some of my experiences with occupational therapy so people out there have an idea of what it's like and what they can expect. Occupational therapy is kind of a broad term that covers some more physical and fine motor skill activities, but also memory and some of the more cognitive function skills. For me, it was a combination of both. I did a lot of fine motor skill refinement and therapy and improvement by putting blocks together, building and balancing wood blocks, and constructing Legos, and doing puzzles, things like that, that really helped build my fine motor skills, to identify where the deficiencies were, so that people could focus, the healthcare providers could focus on improving those specific areas. So it's kind of scattershot at first. You'll do a wide range of activities just to identify where the problems are and where improvements can be made. Then as you go on in the therapy, as the weeks go on, you'll start to refine down and focus on the areas you're having trouble with. On the psychological side, on the mental side, you're looking at a number of memory activities. You're looking at hide-and-go-seek-type activities. Where in the supermarket is x, y, and z? Where would you go for this? How do you get around on a Metro map, for example, or an underground subway, public transportation? How do you get from point A to point B-- and trying to map that out. What they're going to be doing is analyzing how long it takes you, and over the period of weeks that you're engaged in the occupational therapy, you'll start to identify areas on the mental side where you're really strong and your mental acuity is great, and then other areas where your mental acuity might have room for improvement. So that's just a little scattershot of what to expect, but that's what occupational therapy is. You're taking a look at how it can best help you, and then they're going to refine and personalize it for you as well. If you have any questions, any specific thoughts, let us know. We're here to help. Thanks.

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From doing puzzles and building Lego models to finding items in the grocery store or mapping a route on the subway, Adam shares his experiences in occupational therapy and how it really helped him during his recovery from TBI.

 
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Hi, I’m Adam Anicich

I’m a former Army Sergeant, a Department of Veterans Affairs employee, a service-disabled vet, and someone with a brain injury. I’m here to share my story with you — along with some practical tips — and I hope that I can help you in your own journey of recovery.

Learn more about Adam >

 

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