Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Activities of Daily Loving

          In occupational therapy, tasks individuals accomplish throughout the course of daily life in order to ensure physical well-being are referred to as activities of daily living, or ADLs.  While it comes as no surprise that activities such as grooming and feeding are ADLs, some people may not acknowledge or even realize that sexual activity is also included in this category.  While a dialogue on this topic may be awkward for patient and practitioner alike to initiate, there are ways in which an occupational therapist may tactfully determine the need to address this area.  For example, the therapist may administer a questionnaire that allows an individual to indicate various areas of difficulty, including sexual concerns.  In any case, it is important to realize that a physical deficit does not have to prevent an individual from being able to engage in sexual expression.  Because occupational therapists are skilled in rehabilitation as well as activity modification and other compensatory strategies, they are equipped to provide therapeutic intervention in this often overlooked area of daily life.