Exploring A Career In Health Science: Occupational Therapy

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In healthcare, there are many careers available for you to fulfill a career suitable for you. An example of one of these positions is occupational therapy, otherwise known as OT. Occupational therapists treat disabled, ill, injured, or recovering patients through daily activities. They provide ways for patients to continue their lifestyles as normal as possible, whether it’s simple repetitive activities you do daily, or finding ways to help patients continue working.

According to previous interests, healthcare would be a suitable path for me to follow. Occupational therapy would be a great choice for me because of the diversity of people you work with, the communication skills needed, and the overall helpful nature of the job.

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The ideal person to be an occupational therapist would be open-minded, selfless and creative. They must have a certain skill level to be able to provide to the best of their abilities. Occupational therapists work with many different people who need to be treated in completely different ways. To do this, you must be patient, understanding, flexible, and enthusiastic. OT is an extremely social job, so you must be able to closely work with other people, and have great communication and team-working skills. Similar to other professions, you should be able to write fairly well, be organized, have problem solving skills and be observant.

In addition to this, there are certain benefits or issues with occupational therapy, as there are with every job. Occupational therapists work closely with other people who may or may not have been in contact with health related issues, so there is some risk of infection. You are also seeing a wide variety of people who might have mental problems, so there is a risk of them misbehaving. In addition to this, the job comes with a great emotional toll as these people’s mental and physical state rely on you to execute your job properly. However, you are also greatly helping many individuals and that can improve your emotional state as well.

Occupational therapy also comes with a wide range of other benefits. This job has a new and growing demand making it easy to find jobs. It may allow for a future position in OT as well a current position. In addition to this, you get the flexibility of the workplace of the job. You have different work environments, and you come in contact with many people throughout the day. Finally, the job also entails a lucrative salary.

In order to become an OT, you must gain real-life experience. Some possible locations for this to be fulfilled are childhood centers, schools, community centers, mental health offices, rehabilitation hospitals, and participating with stimulations or actual patients. Within those places, you may participate in a camp for the disabled, or be a volunteer at health conferences. In addition to this, you may read books on occupational therapy or take a related course. I personally have not participated in any work experience yet due to my age, but I may look into it in the future.

When being educated, there are multiple steps necessary to be an OT. You need to receive a masters degree of occupational therapy as well as six months of supervised fieldwork in an official setting. In addition to this, there is a national certification exam that you must receive a passing grade on. Generally, the master’s degree program will take an average of two years plus additional training. Overall, the length of training is around 6 years. In Texas, thirty hours of approved continuing education must be completed every two years to maintain your licence. To obtain the education, you would go to a university. Some examples in Texas are Texas Tech University, The University of Texas Health and Science Center at San Antonio.

When searching for an available position to be an occupational therapist, it generally is not challenging as there is a huge demand. However, occupational therapy is expected to grow by 18% by 2028. Once employed, there is not much room to grow into other medical fields as occupational therapy is more separated than other jobs on the health track may be. There are some positions that are related to occupational therapy though. Some examples may be an occupational therapy assistant, a physical therapist, recreational therapist, and a respiratory therapist.

Once employed, an occupational therapists typical position follows the same guidelines for a routine. Generally, they might meet with multiple patients, new and old, to discuss their history or future plans. They might diagnose or treat certain patients as well. Occupational therapists also do demonstrations to elaborate more on their plan for the patient. They may work them through the routine, or help them understand better.

Another aspect of an occupational therapists daily routine might be to travel to or from a patient’s home, work, living area, or other main location involved in their lives. They may be entitled to evaluate one of these potential locations to be certain that the area is suitable for the patient being treated. This also may involve going to multiple patients homes or workplaces rather than just one. Occupational therapists generally work forty hour weeks, or around eight hour days. Their daily lives may be improved emotionally as they have the satisfaction of helping someone continue their lives normally. However, there may also be regret or disappointment if something does not happen to plan as their lives depend on you.

The earnings for occupational therapy may vary. Generally, the hourly range for wages would be around $29.32-$47.76. Annually, you will earn at least $60,981. However, it may be possible for you to earn a maximum of $99,337.

As any job, there are some potential factors that may play into how much you specifically make. If you have recently become an OT then you would obviously make less than a senior occupational therapist would. When new to a profession, you are almost always paid less. Only in rare cases are you paid as much as existing occupational therapists are. Depending on setting and location, you may also be paid more or less. Different areas of the USA and of the world have completely different finances. It may be cheaper to live in some areas so you would make less money and vise versa. However, if owning a private business would be a more suitable job for you than the finances may be completely different.

With all of the information gathered, I feel like it was very similar to my original expectations. This field seems very suitable for me and my personality and I feel like it might be a great career choice for me. Before it gets too late, I will need to begin working on having some experience for the career as I have none so far. This experience might involved volunteering at schools, hospitals or other health related areas. Due to age, the volunteering and potential jobs will not begin yet as I am still underage, but when I am allowed to, I will begin to get experience.

Upon further research, I like most aspects of occupational therapy as it is not as demanding than other professions in the medical field. Many completely take away from your whole lives and work becomes your life, but occupational therapy follows more general hours. However, I do not like the emotional challenge as it may be stressful at some times. In the end, his research has confirmed my plans to potentially pursue a career in occupational therapy.

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Exploring A Career In Health Science: Occupational Therapy. (2022, February 24). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 23, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/exploring-a-career-in-health-science-occupational-therapy/
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