The Importance of Activities of Daily Living (ADL) in Therapy Interventions

MediLodge of Taylor

MediLodge of Taylor     Activities of Daily Living (ADL) are part of therapeutic interventions in Occupational Therapy, which are designed to benefit any patient suffering from an orthopedic, neurological or sensory deficit. ADL encompass all tasks that are both necessary and meaningful to a patient. Self-care skills, including bathing, dressing, oral hygiene, hair care, feeding skills and play skills for children, are considered basic ADL. Writing, driving, home-care tasks, child care, finance management and work or school-related activities are considered advanced ADL. Leisure activities, such as sports, hobbies and musical talents, are examples of meaningful tasks that would be simulated or practiced to return the patient to a functional level of physical and emotional involvement. Every patient is unique in terms of what is important to them. If the client is a homemaker, an example of a meaningful activity for this client would be cooking. Therefore, cooking could be part of therapeutic interventions practiced in therapy.

The purpose of therapeutic intervention for retraining activities of daily living is two-fold:

  • The goals of therapy with temporary or transient conditions focus on remediation of the identified deficits to allow a patient to return to the maximal level of independence in all ADL.
  • The goals of therapy with permanent or chronic conditions may include instruction in compensatory techniques to allow the patient to safely accomplish a task, retraining to reinforce a new method of completing activities or training with adaptive equipment to safely accomplish ADL within the patient’s limited capacities.

Practicing skills in closely simulated environments promotes greater meaning, purpose and ultimately, maximizes carryover into the patient’s own environment.

Monroe OT     Occupational Therapists provide a comprehensive one-on-one evaluation of each patient’s functional activity limitations and design a treatment program to address these limitations. The program is an ongoing process and can be changed throughout the therapy process to best suit the needs of the patient to maximize independence in ADL’s. ADL training can be incorporated within any therapeutic experience. It is often provided in conjunction with Physical Therapy services to build functional skills as the patient’s balance, mobility, core and extremity strength are improving. The Occupational and Physical Therapists work together to provide a comprehensive approach to maximize the patient’s functional abilities and promote greater independence in the skills required for enjoying life. ADL training services may also include instruction for caregivers to help them learn how to correctly care for the needs of the patient, and how to help and assist the patient in caring for themselves. It is very important that caregivers motivate their friends/family members to do as much for themselves as possible and promote the highest level of independence as possible.

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MediLodge of Taylor

MediLodge of Taylor

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