Some people find it difficult to carry out their daily routines due to illness, injuries, or disabilities. However, they can seek help from occupational therapists to navigate everyday functions. This article aims at explaining the duties of occupational therapists (OTs) and the benefits of getting a degree in this2 field of study.
Who is an Occupational Therapist?
Occupational therapists are specialists who use scientific approaches to assist people with special needs. They assist in creating a personalized working plan for their patients to enable them to achieve a healthy lifestyle. This is done continuously until the patients can carry out tasks on their own, without the help of a therapist and without many challenges.
Furthermore, OTs can be found working in places like schools, clinics, nursing homes, and hospitals. They should be cheerful and enjoy their work with patients. This is one very vital skill required for this job.
Helping patients recover as well as discover the most vital skills they require for leading a healthy and self-reliant lifestyle is not an easy task. But it is fun when you love what you do. You can check out this website to learn more about the duties of an occupational therapist.
Making a Decision
Before deciding to pursue a career in this field, you must know whether it is the best thing for you or not. Being in the field of medicine already does not guarantee how well you will fit in as an occupational therapist. However, below are some pointers that could help you make the right decision.
1. You Love to Impact the Lives of People
This career path requires way more than assisting patients to carry out daily routines or providing medical assistance. It involves vital relationship skills like patience, understanding, faith, compassion, and love. OTs serve as confidence boosters, helping their patients gain confidence and maintain an independent lifestyle, overcoming reasoning disabilities, and returning to their normal life.
2. You Love to Explore
If you love exploring, then this career might be perfect for you. Specialists in this field might be required to work in different settings. For example, you may begin as a therapist for older patients and later be required to work in a school environment.
Also, working in this field might require you to learn the rudiments of operating certain new technological equipment used in diagnosis or training. Such equipment includes the 3D printer used in creating functional prostheses. Therefore, getting a degree here will make you stay abreast of the latest medical technological trends.
3. Higher Educational Pursuit
Maybe you would like to extend your rank as an occupational therapist. You could decide to take a further course in the field. This will provide you with better experiences as you will be exposed to further challenges in the field, as well as new approaches. Hence, taking a doctorate program online could help you.
Average Salary Range of an Occupational Therapist
Like many other fields of life, people earn according to their level of education. The same is applicable in this field. For instance, let’s compare the weekly earnings of a therapist with a master’s degree earning over $1,434 and the weekly earnings of another therapist with a doctorate degree earning over $1,825. Taking records over a period of 20 years, you will find a large salary difference of over $406,640.
In 2019, the average salary of OTs was $84950, and the profession expects to increase by 16% compared to the 10% increase in diagnosis and treatment practitioner jobs. You can visit https://www.forbes.com/sites/andrewdepietro/2020/08/16/occupational-therapist-salary-state/?sh=450d8c2179e8 to see how much OTs earn in each state.
Benefits of Getting an Occupational Therapy Doctorate Degree
The following are some benefits of getting a doctorate degree in Occupational Therapy:
1. Increased Salary
The doctorate degree holders accrue higher earnings compared to master’s or bachelor’s degree holders. This is because employers consider the amount of time as well as the efforts you’ve put into the course of study. This, therefore, gives you an edge over others.
2. Diverse Career Path
A doctorate holder in occupational therapy is not restricted to practice but can go ahead to become a professor or lecturer. You can open your health facility or become a department supervisor in a hospital using your vast experience. You can also author books. There are just too many diverse paths that one could follow with a doctorate in this field.
If you are considering getting an occupational therapy doctorate degree after your master’s, this could give you the chance to specialize in a particular field that you love. You could choose a field where you would be in direct contact with your patients, overseeing their care and wellbeing.
Apart from the fact that you are helping your patients get back their lives, you also become fulfilled seeing that the people you care for get better. You can influence and transform people’s lives, even making them practice healthy living.
Occupational therapy is a very vital field as it involves the restoration of normalcy to people’s lives. However, taking a course in this field should not just be a fast decision, you should be sure that it is exactly what you want to do. Some vital skills required of an OT include patience, love, and empathy. Taking a doctorate in this field will open the door to several opportunities for you.