7 Most Popular Specialized Occupational Therapy Fields


    After Doctor of occupational therapy, what is next? Therefore, an overview of selection advance career in OT and select best specialization certification.

    Occupational therapy has come up to be one of the most rewarding careers with average salaries for professionals much higher than average national salaries. Although many people realize that they want to pursue health care sciences, they are not sure which field exactly to get into.

    In this article, we are going to discussing top specialties leading flourishing career in occupational therapy. Many students after doctor of occupational degree looking some specialty course or certification for an easy job. (See AOTA site, for more about certification). Here are top Certification AOTA is offering;

    1. Gerontology
    2. Mental Health
    3. Pediatrics
    4. Physical Rehabilitation

    Furthermore, many have decided after a degree in occupational therapy (DOT) but are not sure which type of occupational therapist they want to be.

    Types of Occupational Therapy

    Occupational therapy is a diverse field. OT professionals can help patients with problems from physical disabilities to mental health issues.

    Check NBCOT official site for certification in OT.

    Types of Occupational Therapy you might not know about

    The best decision one can make is that which is made after educating oneself on available options. Following are some occupational therapy types. You can choose to specialize in one or more of them.

    1. Occupational Orthopedics

    Individuals who have been in an accident or a trauma after which they require surgery can benefit from orthopedic occupational therapists. For example, patients who have recently had a knee cap replacement, hip replacement, surgery for upper or lower limb fractures need therapy from orthopedics.

    Occupational Orthopedics

    Furthermore, to generalize, skeletal issues are largely dealt with by orthopedic occupational therapists. Those patients who have constrained physical movement and require a wheelchair can also benefit from therapists. Constrained physical movement can restrict daily occupational roles of patients. Therapy can help them live independently.

    An orthopedic occupational therapist assesses a patient’s current situation and compares it to their situation from a time before the trauma. They then try to help patients regain their original strength. This process is also called physical rehabilitation.

    Fee: $43 highest, on average $37.95 in most of us states

    Annually Salary: $56,448 – $94,964

    1. Occupational Geriatrics

    Occupational therapists who specialize in Geriatrics mainly help old age citizens regain their physical state to the highest possible extent. Geriatrics is the field that focuses on senior citizens and their health.

    Occupational Geriatrics

    These occupational therapist work with old aged patients in helping them carry out tasks like walking, climbing the stairs, feeding, using the bathroom and much more. They also ensure that such patients do not injure themselves by regulating their environment.

    They also train them to prevent falls. The main purpose of Geriatric Occupational Therapy is self-reliance for senior citizens. There are a number of sub-divisions in this field that professionals can choose from.

    Fee: $43.54 (Highest), on average $35.45 in Most the states

    Annually Salary: $59,971 – $90,564

    1. Occupational Neurology

    Some patients can have neurological disorders which affect their occupational roles. These disorders can include Parkinson’s disease, muscular dystrophy, stroke, and multiple sclerosis etc.

    These diseases hinder daily activities of patients and an occupational therapist adds value to the life of these patients. This is done by minimizing the effect of these diseases.

    Occupational Neurology

    Neurology occupational therapy is also a diverse and academically rigorous field. These therapists learn to administer a number of therapeutic procedures. They can perform intervention through visual, physical and aquatic therapies. Moreover, they also perform energy conservation therapies. Their work largely involves understanding the mechanism of the body and biofeedback.

    Biofeedback is when a certain intervention is applied, and its results are studied after which the next intervention method is decided. Occupational therapy of this kind is a sequential and difficult but rewarding process.

    Hourly Pay: $29.32 – $43.99 on average hourly pay is around $35.66

    Annually Salary: $59,971 – $90,564

    1. Occupational Psychiatry

    Some people tend to misunderstand the thin line difference that lies between psychiatry and neurology. Psychiatry involves treatment of mental issues and mental health that can help patients lead happier and normal lives.


    Treatment involves stress management, personal grooming, hygiene maintenance, and home maintenance. Patients may be suffering from depression, anxiety, stress and other related issues which can hinder daily activities. Furthermore, the presence of such mental issues can greatly reduce the quality of life. Such patients can be suffering from these problems for sometimes a large number of years before they get treatment. However, individuals are getting more and more therapy in recent years which is why there is a higher demand for psychiatrists.

    Moreover, these therapists work in correctional facilities, hospitals with psychology departments and clinics.

    Hourly Pay: $67 – $70.99 on average hourly pay is around $55.66

    Annually Salary: $187,200

    1. Occupational Critical Care

    Some patients can be subject to a certain kind of trauma that can result in serious issues, that may even be life-threatening. Critical care can be needed in cases where a patient is suffering from problems such as head trauma, emphysema, stroke, etc.

    See: Acute Care Occupational Therapy

    The job of the therapist is to first asses any threats to life. Furthermore, they asses’ threats to loss of normal bodily functions given the condition. A treatment is then devised. However, the first goal in treatment is to stabilize the condition of the patient.

    Occupational-Therapy-in-Acute Care

    Intervention for such patients involves diet plans, development plans, recovery plans and much more as a part of post-hospitalization. Patients are given therapy to return to a normal lifestyle.

    Furthermore, families and caretakers or such patients work in close collaboration with the therapist to ensure that a healthy environment is maintained for the patient at all costs.

    Hourly Salary: $68 on average $54.00

    Annually Salary: $209,372

    1. Pediatrics Occupational Therapy

    Pediatric occupational therapists work with children that suffer from cognitive and adaptive disabilities. Such children can have trouble coming up with their education and occupational roles.Role-Occupational-Therapist

    They are given treatment at a young age and the process is continued. Issues such as cerebral palsy, autism and psychological disorders in children are taken care of by pediatric occupational therapists.

    They work in close collaboration with psychiatric occupational therapists as well. Moreover, they also work with newborn children who are born with a disability. For this reason, they work in close collaboration with neonatal medical professionals as well.

    Hourly Pay: $35.00, $43.67 is the highest hourly pay

    Annually Salary: On average Pediatric OT Make Around $60,673

    1. Vision Occupational Therapy

    Certain patients can have problems in their eyes which can cause conditions like high amounts of strains and pressure on the inside of eyes. Poor tracking abilities while reading and blacking out are normal symptoms of disabilities for such patients.

    Vision occupational therapist work with such patients to reduce their disability and discomfort caused by vision.

    Such patients can also have issues in comprehending a situation before them because their eyes do not transmit information efficiently to the brain.

    There are certain exercises and treatments that are applied to such patients during an intervention. The goal is to bring these patients to a normal condition where they do not feel uncomfortable with the use of eyes.

    Hourly Pay: $27.00, $35.67 is the highest hourly pay

    Annually Salary: On average Pediatric OT Make Around $55,673

    Excited about your potential Occupational Therapist career options?

    Still, confused regarding the selection of specialization? In our recent article about the doctor of occupational therapy career, you understand the outcomes and outlook in the USA. Make sure we display above states according to US states, worldwide stats is a little bit different.


    IN many countries Occupational therapist does not exist, only physical therapist perform all duties.

    With 28%, job growth is expected until the 2026 year. Many students shifting their current study towards therapist and healthcare field due to the employment rate. Accordant o Thebalancecareer Projected Job Openings (2016-2026): 31,000 and for OTA Projected Job Openings (2016-2026): 11,400. 18000 more jobs for Occupational therapy AIDE also.





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