• Children Toegether smiling
  • Teen with a book looking pensive
  • University Students

Welcome to OT For Life

OT For Life was set up by Áine O'Dea in 2016 to deliver Occupational Therapy services to children, adolescents and young adults in the Limeirck and Munster region.

Áine O'Dea is an experienced occupational therapist who graduated from the University of Teesside in England with a first class honours B.Sc in Occupational Therapy in 2000. During her early career she worked in many senior clinical roles in a variety of National Health Service (NHS, UK) trusts in the areas of adolescent and adult mental health and physical health.

In 2005, Áine returned to Ireland to commence working in a newly established Early Intervention Service for children (0-6 years old). Since then Áine has worked on various Children's Service teams providing OT services to children with developmental conditions.

Key Areas

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)asd

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder—typically diagnosed around age 3 years—that affects brain functions, specifically those areas that control social behaviors and communication skills.

Occupational therapy services focus on enhancing participation in the performance of activities of daily living (e.g., feeding, dressing), instrumental activities of daily living (e.g., community mobility, safety procedures), education, work, leisure, play, and social participation. For an individual with an ASD, occupational therapy services are defined according to the person's needs and desired goals and priorities for participation.

Dyspraxia/Developmental Co-ordination Disorder (DCD)Dispraxia

Dyspraxia is an immaturity of the organisation of movement. Dyspraxia is also known as Developmental Co-ordination Disorder (DCD). Dyspraxia can impact fine motor skills, gross motor skills and perceptual skills. Someone with dyspraxia will find it hard to plan what to do and how to do it. As an individual transitions to adolescence and adulthood organisational skills, time-management skills and goal-setting for everyday life skills can continue to be challenging.

Occupational therapists are able to assess children of all ages with movement, co-ordination and organisational problems to determine the exact nature of the difficulties and how it impacts the child's day to day life. The intervention will focus on how the child manages daily activities at home, school and play and it will work on the assumption that children develop skills as a consequence of the interaction between the child, the environment and the task. A variety of techniques may be used to address the underlying difficulties and to help improve functional performance with life skills and independence.

Developmental DelayDevelopment

A child's earliest years are filled with new stimulations and novel experiences that drive his or her cognitive, social, and physical growth. The first 3 years of life are a critical time for brain development, especially if a child is delayed or restricted in development. If a child needs support to develop optimally, occupational therapy can help.

Occupational Therapists evaluate and assess the child and then identify things that parents and caregivers can do throughout the day to reinforce a skill and improve sensory processing or enable new learning.

Handwriting difficultieshandwriting

Handwriting is a complex process of managing written language by coordinating the eyes, arms, hands, pencil grip, letter formation, and body posture. The development of a child's handwriting can provide clues to developmental problems that could hinder a child's learning because teachers depend on written work to measure how well a child is learning.

Occupational therapists can evaluate the underlying components that support a student's handwriting, such as; muscle strength, endurance, coordination, motor control, and visual perception and parents can encourage activities at home to support good handwriting skills.

Learning difficultiesWoman helping a child

If your child has a disability and has difficulty performing everyday tasks or "occupations," early intervention services and occupational therapists can provide the necessary help.

Occupational therapists use a combination of evidenced-based strategies (proven by research) and creativity to help children learn and to be as independent as possible with life skills.