Occupational Therapy and Sensory Integration

Occupational Therapy and Sensory Integration


Occupational Therapy and Sensory Integration Center


About the Department


Ergotherapy, which aims to make individuals become independent individuals at the maximum level, makes special applications. It deals with all age groups from 7 to 70. It carries out activities to provide self-care and skills of individuals in self-realization.


uses meaningful and purposeful activities to promote the greatest possible functional independence for children living with the effects of illness, injury, birth defects, disability, or developmental delay.


Treatment is planned for children from 3 months to 15 years old. The focus of the children's clinic is to enable children to achieve greater success in activities that are meaningful to them. This may include increased independence in personal care tasks such as eating or dressing, increasing age-appropriate socialization skills and the ability to play, learning to write more readable, strategies to learn to stay calm and adapting to daily life.



After the individuals who find sensory problems with the ergo therapists apply some tests, their clinical evaluations determine the sensory problems of the individuals, and the therapy program is determined by analyzing the information received from other specialists and information received from the family.


The therapy process is progressed in regular rhythms per week according to the individuals' proximity to therapy (socialization) and the severity of the disorder. In cases where the disorder is high, while an intensive therapy program is organized, the session interval is increased at the control level, depending on the condition of recovery.


Disease Groups Using Occupational Therapy and Sensory Integration;


• Sensory Integration Disorder

Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

• Autism

• Cerebral palsy

• Down Syndrome

•Developmental delays

• Fine and gross motor dysfunction

• Mental Barriers

• Psychosocial disorders


Health is not only the absence of illness and disability but a physical, spiritual and social well-being. It works with many disease groups in order for the individual to reach the maximum level of well-being in case of a health disorder.



What are the Application Areas of Ergotherapy in our Hospital?


There are therapy areas where there are mostly activity areas where adult individuals are active. These; marbling workshop, a handicraft workshop, a ceramic workshop, a painting workshop, a gymnasium, and a kitchen workshop. The therapy processes are followed by our specialist (ergo therapist) in these areas. With the pediatric patient group from 3 months to 15 years old, services are provided to pediatric patients in the sensory integration clinic. Studies are carried out for many specific problems such as sensory problems, motor functions, distractions, behavioral problems, and academic problems in children. The therapy area prepares the environment for children to perform many functions or to reveal situations that they have avoided or when they are better off.


Ergotherapy should be applied for which problems experienced in children?


Ergotherapy is applied to all problems that children experience in daily life. These address situations that seem minor, but are the groundwork for other underlying disorders or may arise with the growth of a forward-looking life. Therefore, a comprehensive analysis is carried out by a specialist on the problem of the child.


For example; A child experiencing clumsiness or constant falls may experience motor senses or sensory problems that we call perception of depth? Children who avoid bathing or do not like shaking hands may have sensory problems. In such cases, when the analysis of the situation is not done by a specialist, in the following process, it has difficulty in participating in the social environment which we call social isolation. This situation affects their communication with the environment and also prevents them from expressing themselves to be weak in their speaking skills.


As it is understood from the example, it can be seen in the ergo therapist in the movements and behaviors outside of the normal experienced in the early period, and information about his condition can be prevented and problems that may occur in the future may be prevented.



Which areas of specialty does it work with?


Ergotherapy activities play a supportive or complementary role in the treatment of individuals. Therefore, it works with many specialties in the multidisciplinary field of study. These; Neurology, psychiatry, psychology, language speech therapy, orthopedics, and surgical specialties. For example, a child who needs to take language speech therapy can control himself first and must participate effectively in therapy. In individuals who have an inactive control only with an assistant, after receiving sensory integration therapy, after receiving some commands, keeping calm, it is possible to obtain faster and more efficient results by continuing with language speech therapy and working together.


Due to the fact that many specialties are together in our hospital, because of the high level of communication between each other, fast and efficient results can be obtained, and it can be followed in the best way. In our hospital where brain imaging tactics are advanced, further applications can be implemented with the help of the psychiatry and neurology service, following the evidence-based and systematic developments.


• Occupational therapy assessment

• On-site ergonomic assessment and consultation

• Special treatment programs to increase the ability to perform daily life activities

• Adaptive equipment recommendations and training

• Guidance for family members and clients.



In our hospital; in order to reduce the pathology of the clients, help them to maintain their health and socialize, to develop their self-confidence, various skills, and abilities, to encourage them to use these skills and abilities in their daily life, to gain awareness about the fact that their leisure time will increase the quality of life, Recreational ergotherapy activities involving music, painting, handicrafts, ceramics, sports, culinary and marbling art are carried out.



When people are mentally and physically engaged, when they put all their attention to the work they do, they naturally experience relaxation, they experience the moment, so it is important to evaluate free time with different activities. Artistic activities and sports activities are also used as a communication tool, and often the result is; There is a feeling of getting away from stress, tension, purification and renewal.



Creativity is supported in the therapies with music, painting, and marbling art because; creativity is the ability to solve problems and create new thoughts, to look at the same thing with others but to see something different and to create a new product. For these reasons, creativity is important in complex societies full of problems.




People cannot improve themselves if they cannot feed on art. Art is a stage of the interaction of humans and nature. This has a social character. Art is a phenomenon that humanizes life. Art can be used to create and strengthen the boundaries of personality, and to establish connections between inner experiences and external reality. It is one of the therapy methods that allow patients to reflect their problems through the painting and to relax and talk about the pictures they painted.


Our interests are music, painting, sports, dancing, taking photographs, ceramics, model making, reading books, gardening, poetry, writing stories, cooking, sewing, handicrafts, these efforts are for us to getaway from daily work, hustle and bustle. It allows us to do something, take a break to relieve the fatigue and tension of the day.



Sensory Integration


Sensory systems are the gateways of the brain and body. Our senses make it possible to learn the world around us. The brain must understand various sensory information from the body and the environment to respond to events, pay attention, learn, teach, plan, and organize. This process is called "sensory integration".


For most people, sensory integration naturally develops through normal childhood activities. For some people, sensory integration does not develop as efficiently as necessary, according to how a child responds and interacts with the environment and other people around them.


For example, some people cannot hear well if they cannot see the sound sources clearly. In other cases, seeing something moving like a train makes people feel they are moving.



Children who have difficulty processing sensory information:

• children who move a lot,

• children who are slow to learn new motor skills,

• children who sensitive to clothes,

• children described as "smart but lazy".

• Creating Effective Intervention,




Ergotherapists working in the field of pediatrics use sensory integration information during therapy to address the underlying sensory and motor basis that helps a child learn their new skills more easily. Our approach is individualized to each child and the functional needs of the family. It explains children's observations about their strengths and difficulties, so that family members reveal how the child's sensory input processing difficulties affect daily activities and an individualized treatment plan is created.





When parents and therapists work together, new insights, each leading to a better understanding of each child and more effective intervention, are gained, and the treatment process continues to be effective with its adaptation to daily life.



Sensory Problems

Sensory Integration Disorder (SID, also called sensory processing disorder) causes information processing difficulties from five classical senses (vision, auditory, touch, smell, and taste) or sense of movement (vestibular system) and/or positional sense (proprioception) sensory state. is a neurological disorder. Sensory information is normally taken for those with SID but is perceived as abnormal. This is not the same as blindness or deafness. Because, unlike these disorders, sensory information is perceived by people with SID, but information tends to analyze the brain in an unusual, causing distress or confusion.


SID can be a stand-alone disorder, but it may be a feature of other neurological conditions, such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, dyslexia (difficulty reading), developmental dyspraxia (movement planning disorder), speech delays, and others.





This condition is usually diagnosed by the ergo therapist. It is diagnosed by specialist doctors such as developmental pediatricians, pediatric neurologists.


Sensory Processing Disorder is used as a universal umbrella term, with three main diagnostic groups containing all forms of this disorder:


Type I - Sensory Modulation Disorder,

Type II - Sensory-Based Motor Disorder,

Type III - Sensory Discrimination Disorder,


Type I - Sensory Modulation Disorder (SMD): Over or under-responding to sensory stimuli or seeking sensory stimulation. This group may include fear and / or anxiety-inducing pattern, negative and / or stubborn behavior, attachment to self-absorbing behavior, or difficulty in seeking creative or active emotion.


Type II - Sensory-Based Motor Disorder (SBMD): Indicates irregular motor output as a result of improper processing of sensory information.


Type III - Sensory Discrimination Disorder (SDD): Sensory discrimination or postural control difficulties and/or dyspraxia (movement planning disorder) occurs in carelessness, irregularity, poor school performance.



Sensory integration disorders vary among individuals according to their characteristics and intensity. Some may be slightly uncomfortable, while discomfort may be less noticeable, while others may be extremely uncomfortable, having problems with daily work. While the ergotherapy sessions focus on enhancing a child's ability to tolerate various sensory experiences, both activities and the environment should be evaluated for a "correct" adaptation to the child. Parents can help the child by realizing that games are an important part of the child's development. The therapy involves working with an ergo therapist, and the child is engaged in activities that provide vestibular, proprioceptive and tactile stimulation. The therapy is individualized to meet the special needs of the child for development. During the goal-oriented activity, the emphasis is placed on automatic sensory processes. Children is connected to the therapy by playing a game that includes activities such as, finger painting, use of Play-Doh modeling clay, swinging, playing, climbing, etc. in rice or water boxes..



Sensory Integration Therapy is based on four basic principles:

1) Just the Right Fight (the child must successfully fulfill the challenges presented with fun activities)

2) Adaptive Response (the child adapts his behavior with new and useful strategies in response to the challenges presented)

3) Active Participation (the child will want to participate as the event is fun)

4) Child-Oriented (child's preferences are used to initiate therapeutic experiences in the session).


Children with lower sensitivity (low sensitivity/hyposensitivity) may experience strong sensations such as caressing, vibrations or rubbing with a brush. The game can contain a number of materials to stimulate the senses, such as dough or finger painting.


Children with higher sensitivity (hypersensitivity( may experience calm activities such as quiet music and gentle shaking in a poorly lit room. Treatments and rewards can be used to encourage children to tolerate activities that they would normally avoid.



"Sensory Integration" in Treatment of Autism


Sensory problems are evident among the symptoms seen in autism. Sensory problems reduce the compliance of the individual with the environment and prevent them from exhibiting proper behavior. It reduces the adaptation of the individual to life, prevents them from showing daily life skills, makes it difficult for them to get an academic education, and has problems in self-care. With the integrative approach of sensory integration therapy, an improvement in the behavior of the individual is recorded and it can help to establish and control the self-self. It provides treatment support to minimize the specified problems.

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