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Occupational therapy and Parkinson's

Occupational therapists are health professionals who can help people with Parkinson's stay independent for longer and carry on doing the activities that are important in their lives.

They do this by giving advice on how to manage a wide range of everyday tasks, life and work skills, and hobbies.

They can also recommend ways to make homes and workplaces safer and easier to cope with.

How occupational therapy can help

I saw an extremely helpful occupational therapist, who organised getting me a bath chair lift and easy chair.

If you have Parkinson's, you may have problems with everyday tasks such as getting in and out of the bath. An occupational therapist will help you manage these tasks.

They may:

  • suggest easier ways to do tasks that are difficult for you
  • recommend changes to make your home safer, such as handrails
  • recommend equipment or mobility aids
  • help you keep up hobbies and leisure interests
  • help you find ways to continue working

Getting occupational therapy

NHS guidelines say that people with Parkinson's should see an occupational therapist when they are first diagnosed and at regular intervals afterwards.

Contact the social services department of your local council to arrange for an occupational therapist to visit you at home. Your Parkinson's specialist or GP can also refer you.

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