What client factor did you take on?
I chose poor coordination or tremors as a factor that can affect a client while carrying out activities. This condition is also called ataxia which is where an individual loses their ability to coordinate their movements voluntarily as a result of having little to no control over their muscles. This can cause trouble in different parts of the body including the neck, head, limbs, language, trunk, larynx, swallowing and other parts and structures. The poor coordination in these parts continues gradually as ataxia is a progressive condition. Tremors, dizziness, slurred speech and difficulty swallowing are some of the symptoms that a person with this condition experiences and as it mimics symptoms of stroke one needs to seek medical advice so that they can get the proper diagnosis (Bird, 2016).
What activity did you participate in?
The activity I chose was dressing up in the morning. I usually take ten minutes to dress up, but by factoring in poor coordination, it took me longer to complete my dressing. I needed coordination while pulling up my trousers in each leg which was hard as I had to coordinate my leg movements with my hands which were holding up my pants and they were not in sync. With buttoning up my shirt it was difficult because of the tremors, and I had to slowly do it to ensure each button was in the right buttonhole. It was difficult to put on my shoes because of tremors and the poor coordination and at I put on the wrong shoe on the wrong leg. Finally while grooming my hair, it was difficult to coordinate my hand movements, which was holding the comb, to comb my hair the way I wanted. Also, with the tremors, it was hard to brush my hair(Zwicker, Suto, Harris, Vlasakova, & Missiuna, 2018).
What were you most surprised about?
While dressing up in poor coordination as a factor a lot of things surprised me, but one thing surprised me the most. This condition can lead to an individual's self-esteem being affected because it affects how they carry out activities that they used to do quickly before. We take our ability to do everyday activities for granted so much that when it is affected by a condition like this, it affects our mental health (Robinson, et.al, 2015).
How will this experience help you work with clients in the future?
This experience will help me in many ways in future. One way is that it helped me have the first-hand knowledge of what difficulties the patients have while having this condition, therefore, I can relate to them. Secondly, I would know what I needed to do to aid my patients when they experienced poor coordination as sometimes following the textbook instructions is not as useful as actually having the first-hand experience. Also, this experience helped me understand that when an individual is affected by poor coordination, it can affect their self-esteem therefore together with my help I should ensure they get help from a therapist to help them deal with their new reality. By ensuring that their mental health is good, it will positively affect the outcome of the treatment I will offer them (Pendleton, & Schultz-Krohn, 2017).
Bird, T. D. (2016). Hereditary ataxia overview.
Pendleton, H. M., & Schultz-Krohn, W. (2017). Pedretti's Occupational Therapy-E-Book: Practice Skills for Physical Dysfunction. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Zwicker, J. G., Suto, M., Harris, S. R., Vlasakova, N., & Missiuna, C. (2018). Developmental coordination disorder is more than a motor problem: Children describe the impact of daily struggles on their quality of life. British journal of occupational therapy, 81(2), 65-73.
Robinson, L. E., Stodden, D. F., Barnett, L. M., Lopes, V. P., Logan, S. W., Rodrigues, L. P., & D’Hondt, E. (2015). Motor competence and its effect on positive developmental trajectories of health. Sports Medicine, 45(9), 1273-1284.