Children's occupational therapy (health)

Our health occupational therapy service works with children and young people to help develop or increase the skills they need to use in their everyday lives.

What is occupational therapy (OT)?

Our health occupational therapy service works with children and young people to help develop or increase the skills they need to use in their everyday lives if they have physical, developmental or sensory processing difficulties which significantly impact on their motor skills or their ability to function in daily life. We can help children in a number of ways:

  • increasing life skills such as getting dressed, eating independently or using the toilet
  • taking a full part in their education (help with activities like handwriting, organising themselves and being better able to join in with play times, games and PE lessons)

We do this through play, activities and exercises which the child or young person can do at home, early years setting or school.

There is a separate social care occupational therapy service for children. This team assesses whether any changes should be made to a family's home to help the child or young person and organises any equipment necessary.

How the children's occupational therapy (health) service works with children and young people

We work with children and young people with physical, developmental or sensory processing difficulties in Brighton and Hove who are aged 0 to 16 (19 if in a special school or college)

We will see children and young people in a clinic at Seaside View, at their home, early years or childcare provider or school, to help make an assessment of their areas of difficulty. After seeing the child or young person, we may write a report outlining the areas in which the child or young person needs help and our advice may include activity programmes, examples of how to change everyday tasks so that they are easier for the child to do and suggestions of equipment that may make it easier for the child or young person to do something.

Parents and carers can help their child by encouraging them to regularly carry out any activity programmes that the service recommends or to practice their exercises. Please tell us if there are any changes with your child and the activities that they can or can't do and if your child or young person is seen by other health or social care professionals, please tell them that the Occupational Therapy Service from health is working with them so we can share information.

We work with other professionals across education, health and social care.

How can a child be referred to our service?

Any health or education professional can refer a child or young person to our service. All referrals go to the Seaside View referrals panel. The panel will make a decision about whether there should be occupational therapy involvement.

How to contact the Health Occupational Therapy service

You can contact the health occupational therapy service directly at:

Seaside View Child Development Centre 
Brighton General Hospital 
Elm Grove 
Brighton BN2 3EW
Occupational Therapy 
Tel: (01273) 265806

Accessibility at Seaside View

Read about the Social Care Children's Occupational Therapy Service.

Useful links

You may find the following websites useful
Ideas, guidance and information on everything from early years to further education
Supports individuals and families affected by developmental dyspraxia through books, suggestions, a teen newsletter, and an adult support group.
The National Handwriting Association is a charity who aims to promote good practice in the teaching of handwriting and to support those who work with children with handwriting difficulties. They have advice and information booklets available to purchase.
Useful resources for primary age children. Visit the resources section of the site for free printable resources on literacy, numeracy and more.
The National Autistic Society is a UK charity for people affected by autism.

Many people with an autistic spectrum condition have difficulty processing everyday sensory information for example being over sensitive to sounds, sights or smells and this can have a profound effect on their life. Useful information about this as well as advice and strategies can be found in The Sensory World of Autism section
Scope is a charity for disabled people and their families. They have a range of services which includes providing support, advice and information for people with disabilities and their family members.
Cerebra is a national charity that strives to improve the lives of children with brain-related neurological conditions, through research, education and direct, ongoing support.
HemiHelp is a membership organisation supporting children and young people with hemiplegia, and their families. HemiHelp provides a support network for parents, there are useful and practical information sheets available on the website and they run events days throughout the country for children and their families