Personal Care

Helen van Huet, Tracey Elizabeth Parnell, Virginia Mitsch

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter in textbook/reference bookpeer-review


An overview of personal care occupations that people engage in every day, in particular bathing, toileting and dressing, is the focus of this chapter. Engagement in personal care involves a complex interaction between the occupation, the person and the environment in which the occupation is performed. There are a range of enabling strategies that can be chosen when working with people to enable them to perform their occupations of bathing, toileting and dressing. When working with people on their ability to do do personal care occupations, occupational therapists must overcome any reservations they have and must maintain the dignity of the people with whom they are working. The goal of achieving full independence in performing personal care occupations as desired outcome of occupational therapy interventions is often not realistic, achievable, desirable or culturally appropriate for many people who have an illness, injury or impairment. When achieving independence is not possible or culturally appropriate, the focus of enabling strategies should be on achieving interdependence. A practice story is provided detailing an intervention focused on the personal care occupations of a person with an orthopaedic condition to illustrate this area of occupational therapy practice.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOccupational therapy for people experiencing illness, injury or impairment
Subtitle of host publicationPromoting occupation and participation
EditorsMichael Curtin, Mary Egan, Jo Adams
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
Pages459 - 470
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9780702054464
Publication statusPublished - 01 Mar 2017


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