Gift Guide for Occupational Therapists

Special OT gift ideas

I know we are all being inundated with gift options this time of year. But, I have found that therapists are often looking for unique qualities in their gifts, so here are some ideas for that special rehab team member in your life.  

Watch with stopwatch function- A good watch is hard to find. Perhaps the watch industry is disheartened by people's reliance on phones for checking the time? A good old fashioned watch, however, is still a must for people in rehab. If it has a stopwatch option for use on standardized tests- all the better! 

Coolmax socks- Have you ever accidentally worn your wool socks to the nursing home and subsequently spent the day thinking you might pass out in your patient's lap from overheating. If so, I hope you are gifted a pair of these. 

Diving Bell and the Butterfly- Sometimes when I tell people that I work with stroke survivors, they ask me about this movie. From what I understand it does not deal directly with OT, but it is does relate the fascinating story of man who suffered locked-in syndrome following a CVA.  

Curious Incident of A Dog in the Night Time- I have not read this, but I know it is a classic of modern literature regarding autism. 

Heat tech shirt - Therapists who work in an ICU are accustomed to always being cold at work. This might heat things up a bit. The fabric seems as if it could stand the multiple washing that uniforms receive.    

Camper shoes- The number one criteria of any clothing item worn in the rehab setting is its ability to be throughly cleaned and sanitized. I love how easy these are to wipe down at the end of the day. (They are more than I would normally spend for a shoe, but I bought them on sale a couple of years ago, and given that I've worn them every M-F for the past 2 1/2 years and they're showing minimal wear, they seem like an OK investment.)

Nylon water-resistant messenger bag- OT's are always toting around random treatment items, making this a great gift. Again the item's ability to be easily cleaned is crucial. (Warning: if you search "wipeable bags," Google will assume you're looking up diaper bags).  

AOTA membership- This gift is only recommended if the recipient is an enthusiastic student or new grad. 

Yoga mat- For those days following a MaxA transfer that you thought was only going to be CGA, a yoga mat can be a nice gift for your back. 

Full Body Sweater-  OTs love proprioceptive input so it only make sense that a full body sweater would be well received (just kidding…. sort of). 

Sarah Lyon, OTR/LComment