Occupational therapists traditionally assist people with their everyday occupations and daily living skills. Neonatal OTs work with babies and their families.  Babies’ occupations include all their day-to-day activities, such as, playing (interacting, moving, learning), feeding, sleeping, and coping with care activities (such as bathing, dressing and nappy changes). Paediatric Occupational Therapists help babies and families with all of these areas of infant behaviour and care.

Parents may present with these kinds of questions or issues:

  • “I don’t know why my baby cries – what should I do?”
  • “Why does my baby seem fussy and overly sensitive?”
  • “Why is my baby hard to settle or to put down to sleep?”
  • “My baby’s head seems an odd shape—what should I do?”
  • “My baby mainly looks or faces to just the one side”
  • “My baby doesn’t seem to behave like other babies”
  • “Is my baby’s development normal?”
  • “My baby doesn’t want to look at me”
  • “Why doesn’t my baby like tummy-time?”
  • “My baby arches or pulls away when I try to feed him”
  • “I can’t get enough sleep—my baby is hard to work out”
  • “Bath time (or dressing / nappy-changes) is stressful for my baby and/or me”
  • “My baby seems uncomfortable (e.g. from a food intolerance or reflux) and I don’t know how to help”
  • “My baby hates to be placed lying down on her back”
  • “My baby’s movements seem strange or unlike other babies”
  • “My baby doesn’t seem to like me”
  • “My baby seems to be tired all the time”
  • “My baby arches a lot – getting him into the bassinette / car seat / pram is hard work and we all end up feeling upset”
  • “My baby doesn’t seem to cope with noise or too much light or activity and I can’t get anything done”

Paediatric Occupational Therapist: