Occupational Therapist (OT).
Throughout my career at an OT I have working with adults with Learning disabilities, in Mental Health services and with children including in special education. I have completed training in Sensory Integration, Animal Assisted Therapy, Trauma Informed Therapy and Reflex Integration. I am passionate about taking a holistic view of the person I am working with in their environment and at their stage of wellbeing and development. My job is to see how your child moves, this can tell me how confident they are, what everyday tasks they may find challenging and also how they learn and process information. I consider the persons FULL history to get to the root cause of and challenges they face. From this information I can offer various treatments and interventions, all based around movement and play to help the person understand the body and why they find things difficult. Remember our priorities are Play, learning and socialising.
What is occupational Therapy
Your child’s ‘occupations’ in their everyday life include taking care of themselves, participating in school and other peer groups, activities in community and home life. The most important occupation for your child is PLAYING!
We want to maximize their skills to excel at HOME, in SCHOOL and at PLAY
The toolbox at Causeway OT
OT always uses a holistic approach or evidence based interventions. If a work man came to your house with only a hammer you would not have much trust in them to complete the job, a work man needs many tools in their bag to do the job to the best of their ability. I am a trained professional Occupational Therapist but I have many additional interests and strings to my bow. I grew up on a farm and I recognise the positive impacts that animals and nature can have on our human development and out overall well-being. I completed a Masters (MSc) level degree in Human Animal Interaction, which looked at the psychological benefits of interaction with animals for humans and their development. I did this in University of Stirling in 2018. I completed my research with a group on children aged 5-6years old who all had a diagnosis of ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) and I took them to a petting farm in a safari park where I observed an decrease in disruptive sensory based behaviours and an increase in positive social interactions between the children, their peers, teachers and safari park staff. This fuelled me to expand my knowledge in Sensory Integration and Psychological interventions.
My OT experience has taken me to working in Learning Disabilities with challenging behaviours, Special Educational Needs (SEN) school and also within Mental Health in the Criminal Justice System. I feel passionate in holistic and person-centred care and looking outside the box for treatment options.
I furthered my training completing a Diploma in Sensory Integration with Ulster University and Sheffield Hallam University, concluding in 2021. I remain in touch with the most up to date research for Sensory Integration through the Educational Network. Earlier this year I completed training with the well-respected organisation Beacon House, in Trauma Informed Practice. This helps me to link the underpinning origins for Sensory Processing difficulties and Mental Health challenges.
My most recent training pathway has been in the form of Retained Reflexes, this again helps to underpin the root cause of the behavioural, emotional and physical challenges we see in many of our children. I invested time in researching different training and treatment modalities for Retained Reflexes, I am in the process of RMTi (Rhythmic Movement Training International).
My professional journey so far very much reflects my personal journal. I strive to be a healthy and as positive in life as I possibly can. I recognise we need many experiences to build strong foundations for u to then fine tune and learn new skills. I was diagnosed with Dyslexia when I was at University and I spent my school days in extra classes after school and at lunch time to catch up with spelling and literacy. I have become an incredible driven and passionate person through all of my experiences. I strive to see the world through the ‘lens’ of the people I am working with, for me his means getting to the root cause of their difficulties, I continue my learning journey to enable me to provide the best possible service that our young people deserve.
With Causeway OT my dream is that alternative therapy is accessible to as many people as need it to enable them to function, on a daily bases, at their highest ability. Just like with professional evidence I try to stay ahead of the times I hope this platform can enable us to connect using technology and have as much information available for parents and also educational professionals.