A disability services office can help with a wide range of technologies and services that help to improve a person’s quality of life. Disabilities can cause limitations in regard to motor function, mobility, and even cognitive abilities. Fortunately, any one of these challenges can be overcome with the support and resources available through the right specialists. Here are just a few of the key training and therapy areas that you might find through a disability services provider.
Many people need help adapting to a particular type of job. Some patients can work successfully in their field for decades and still need occupational therapy after an injury. Often, this type of therapist works to help patients confront their biggest challenges. Some employers will be able to make accommodations for certain physical limitations. Unfortunately, not all worksites are wheelchair accessible, and many careers demand certain minimum levels of physical or mental ability. Over the course of several meetings, it should be possible to identify realistic goals and address any areas of conflict.
The healing power of music can be a real phenomenon for those challenged by emotions or coordination. Playing a relatively simple instrument can be an opportunity to practice timing and muscle control. Learning about the instrument and music can be an avenue for developing communication skills. The impactful nature of music is evident in many movie soundtracks, and participation in the production of music can make a patient more engaged. Cooperation with other musicians allows for even more experience with communication, and it involves more pressure than simply playing solo or with a recording.
After a debilitating injury or illness, many patients require assistance in regaining control and use of their bodies. Some self-motivated workaholics might be overly zealous and do more harm than good through exercise. After surgery, for example, the recommended rest period can be a vital step in the recovery process. Jumping right back into exercise could cause injuries that lead to infections or otherwise limit the positive results. Conversely, many people need the added motivation of physical therapists encouraging and coaching them through the exercises. In either case, it’s incredibly helpful to have a licensed professional make sure that activities and their intensities are appropriate.
In all of their forms, disability services help people reach toward and maximize their potential. Depending on individual circumstances, it helps to start by talking extensively about the challenges associated with one’s medical history. It’s also important to identify goals and priorities. Many pathways may offer an improved quality of life, but one person’s priority may be different than others. If a particular job or form of independence is most important, then it’s a good idea to discuss these values with a therapist.