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OT 4 Lyfe

Author: Sarah Putt, MA, OTR/L

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A weekly show discussing all topics relating to occupational therapy.
34 Episodes
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Being a lifelong learner is something that is constantly brought up within the profession of occupational therapy. From being a student in OT school, to becoming a new practitioner, to doing research to further the knowledge base for our profession, we are constantly learning new ideas, picking up new skills, and gaining a deeper understanding of how occupations influence health for us as practitioners and for our clients. Miranda Rennie, OTR/L, joins me today to share her journey into the field of occupational therapy, her current work in an outpatient neuro setting and in teaching, as well as her passion for research and evidence-based practice. Miranda constantly strives to challenge herself to be the best therapist that she can be and once listening to the episode you will realize that she is one of the most driven people that you will ever meet. She is dedicated to research and learning in order to advance our profession and add to the knowledge base. Miranda and I instantly connected because she too is an OT podcaster and host of OT Uncorked. Her show is all about sharing a glass of wine while uncorking hot topics in occupational therapy. To hear more from her, definitely check out her podcast and resource blog: http://otuncorked.com/
As occupational therapists, we are faced with many responsibilities in life, including both professional and personal ones, and sometimes maintaining a balance can be quite a struggle. This is something that we help our clients and educate others with, but often times we find ourselves as therapists also struggling to maintain a healthy balance within life. In today’s episode, Brynne Terry MA, OTL/R from Be Well Balance joins us to share some strategies on how we can live well and have a balance between our responsibilities and our occupations.
There are many steps to becoming an occupational therapist, starting with completing an occupational therapy program. Rachel comes back on the show today to share her OT journey thus far as we catch her only days away from starting a graduate occupational therapy program. It’s an exciting time for her, but she’s also nervous as she will be meeting her classmates and professors in the next few days. We chat about what has happened since the last time we chatted and what she is looking forward to within the next few months.
A few weeks ago, OT 4 Lyfe attended the 2019 American Occupational Therapy Association conference in New Orleans, Louisiana. This episode runs through some of the highlights from the conference, including things I did and people I got to meet.
Many kids with autism have significantly delayed play skills, as well as they have difficulty learning new skills and expanding upon the skills they already have. More often than not therapists find themselves trying to teach children with autism how to play through imitation, but these children often have major difficulty with the imitation of others. Combine that with poor engagement and visual regard for others and learning to play for a child with autism can be daunting task. In this episode, we bring on Meg Proctor MS, OTL/R who is an expert in working with children with autism and who loves teaching therapists strategies to put in their tool belt. Meg and Sarah chat about all things autism and play.
Documentation. It is something that all therapists are faced with and unfortunately, it is something that tends to take up a lot of our time. While some of it is very important stuff that we need to include, there are other parts of documentation that are just time sucks. It is commonplace that most reports take between 2-3 hours (or more) to write and that is outside of completing the necessary observations, interviews, standardized tests, scoring and interpreting results, etc. Jason Gonzales OTR/L, the Co-Founder and CEO of Double Time Docs comes on the show today to share how his experience within a variety of school districts, led him to creating a product to help therapist write reports efficiently and easily.
Sensory processing is a complex entity with lots of intricacies and is often times overlooked and misunderstood. As occupational therapists, it is our job to uncover underlying sensory processing and sensory modulation problems within our clients and then educate and provide tips and strategies to help them learn to integrate the information for success and optimal function within their daily lives. Rachel Harrington, COTA/L, AC and Jessica Hill, COTA/L come on the show to cover a broad overview of what sensory processing is, what it looks like, and some of their favorite activities to address sensory concerns.
Attending conferences is a great way to learn new things and connect with people within the occupational therapy community. And one of the biggest events each year within the United States is the American Occupational Therapy Association conference. This episode details specifics about what the AOTA conference looks like, how to prepare, and tips on how to make for successful conference experience.
Understanding the business side of occupational therapy is pivotal for any therapist and practice owner to know. In order to be successful within our profession, we must be aware of the state of healthcare and be solid within our purpose as a clinician. Our guest today, Brandon Seigel, is a private practice business consultant and executive director of Wellness Works Management Partners with years of experience helping practitioners start, run, and advance their practices to the next level. Brandon recently published a book called The Private Practice Survival Guide, outlining highly useful information for therapists and practice owners alike. He presents all over the country at local and state conferences and has an online course and private practice podcast launching soon. His goal is to help therapists in creating a business model that ultimately helps them excel both on a business side and on a clinical side.
We all discover occupational therapy through different ways and it is always fascinating to hear how each therapist is first introduced into this wonderful profession. Our guest today is the whole reason that our host Sarah became an occupational therapist in the first place after meeting her while she worked at a local preschool. Francesca Avalli, MS, OTR/L has a wealth of knowledge from her years working in pediatrics, both in the school and clinic setting, and has a passion for the profession of occupational therapy that is undeniable. She runs her own pediatric clinic in Los Angeles, California and created an awesome product called Handee Band to facilitate her client’s strength and growth.
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