The Main Specialties Available To An Occupational Therapist

Just like physicians and nurses, occupational therapists can pursue specializations too. After earning their bachelor’s degree, they can pick a specialty during their master’s degree program. Occupational therapists can focus on a specific age group or condition to treat. Right now, the American Occupational Therapy Association offers four specialization areas where occupational therapists can get board certifications.

Do You Want To Know What The Main Specialties Are?


Pediatric Specialty

Pediatric occupational therapy focuses on treating children. They can work in hospitals, schools, private home and childcare programs. The occupational therapist assists children with disabilities or disorders to adapt to their illnesses and be able to work around these. The occupational therapist will educate family members and care givers on how to properly care for these children at home so that the progress is continuous. Children are taught to become more independent in performing daily tasks.

Geriatric Specialty

Geriatric SpecialtyGeriatric occupational therapy focuses on aging people who are having problems with performing daily tasks. As the body grows weaker and more fragile, the elderly cannot perform most tasks like they used to. Geriatric occupational therapists help the elderly improve their quality of life. The geriatric occupational therapist also makes sure that the home of the elderly is safe and made convenient for the patient.

Mental Health Specialty

Mental health occupational therapists work with people who are mentally ill or are suffering from mental breakdowns. Patients can be taught skills on how to manage stress, manage money and even how to socialize. Adults with mental problems like depression, mood disorders or drug abuse are treated by mental health occupational therapists.

Physical Rehabilitation Specialty

Physical rehabilitation occupational therapists focus on patients with physical limitations due to a disability, injury or disease. They do not treat the injury but they provide the instruction and treatment for that patient. The physical rehabilitation occupational therapist will use assistive devices, exercises and equipment to help patients relearn performing tasks like those that they used to before the injury or illness. There will be a strong focus on studying kinesiology, physical rehabilitation and physical disabilities.


To get a specialty, earning a graduate degree is a requirement. After getting the degree, the occupational therapist should obtain a license. Most states use the National Board for Certifying Occupational Therapy exam to give licenses to occupational therapists. So, what is your plan? What occupational therapy specialty do you want to pursue? Surely, you will make the right decision after reading about each of them.

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