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Sheetal Gupta

Occupational Therapist, Central Remedial Clinic

An occupational therapist highlights the many reasons why working in a multidisciplinary team providing treatment and care to children with disabilities is a highly rewarding job.

Occupational therapist Sheetal Gupta finds her job rewarding as she benefits from collaborating with specialists who share knowledge and expertise to enhance the wellbeing of children with disabilities.

Having a support system

Gupta is a member of the Children’s Disability Network Team for the Central Remedial Clinic (CRC), a voluntary organisation and national charity, which helps provide 75% of the disability services in Ireland. She says the ability to share opinions with other professionals is one of the most gratifying aspects of her role. “I also receive support from the clinic’s specialist services. For example, if I am stuck somewhere clinically, I can reach out to them. I feel really well-supported,” she adds.

Her breathing techniques have proven so
effective, and I have not seen my son’s hand
and arm as good as it is at the moment.

Multidisciplinary team of experts

Among the specialists she works alongside are social workers, psychotherapists, physiotherapists and speech and language therapists. They cover a wide spectrum of complex diagnoses of autism, Down’s syndrome, and cerebral palsy. Patients may require help from multiple team members, depending on their needs.

“I could be the key worker for a particular patient, overseeing services the child requires and making referrals to other specialist services,” she says.

Rewards of being able to help

Gupta recently worked with an 11-year-old boy diagnosed with cerebral palsy. She conducted assessments related to tone and voluntary motor control. “He also had some underlying anxiety issues, as he was becoming aware of his differences from peers, particularly how his hand moved involuntarily,” she explains.

To alleviate his anxiety, Gupta introduced mindfulness techniques focusing on deep breathing exercises, and the results were amazing after the first session. Gupta shares an email from the 11-year-old boy’s mother: “Her aim is to relax my son and help him to train his brain to move his arm in the direction he wants to. Her breathing techniques have proven so effective, and I have not seen my son’s hand and arm as good as it is at the moment…’’ “Receiving feedback like that makes your day,” Gupta concludes.

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