For most people, handwriting comes naturally.
You can form the letters and words without a second thought.
However, for some children, handwriting can be a big challenge.
When you start to really think about it, you realize handwriting requires you to use a number of skills at the same time.
Proper handwriting relies on all of the following skills:
- Visual coordination
- Core strength
- Fine motor skills
- Hand strength
If your child is struggling with poor handwriting, they may benefit from working with a pediatric occupational therapist near me.
Here at Little Feet Therapy, one of the pediatric therapy specialties we offer is treatment for poor handwriting issues. And while poor handwriting is common among any kids learning how to write, if it doesn’t improve, there might be more going on.
Keep reading to find out more about poor handwriting issues, and how pediatric occupational therapy treatments can help.
What Are Poor Handwriting Issues?
You’ve probably heard the term “chicken scratch” or “chicken scrawl” used to refer to messy handwriting at one time or another.
It’s one thing to have slightly messy writing, but if your child’s handwriting is consistently sloppy or ineligible, they may be dealing with an issue that needs to be addressed.
Poor handwriting issues aren’t just about the look of your child’s writing.
They can also stem from all of the concentration and visual coordination skills going into forming each letter and word.
In this next section we’ll look at how you can identify if your child is struggling with poor handwriting challenges.
How To Tell If Your Child Has Poor Handwriting Issues?
Are you concerned your child is having difficulties with handwriting?
It can be helpful to setup a discussion with your child’s teacher to see if they share your concerns.
You can also have a chat with your child to try to get a sense of whether they’re rushing or losing focus when they’re handwriting or doing other school assignments.
If they’re focused and taking their time, there might be other issues at play such as visual coordination problems.
Other than looking sloppy, what exactly are the signs of handwriting issues?
You might notice any of the following concerns if your child struggles with poor handwriting issues:
- They avoid schoolwork or other projects that involve writing
- Their handwriting appears sloppy or illegible compared to work completed by their peers
- The look of their writing and lettering lacks consistency
- While they practice writing, they become frustrated or easily distracted
- They complain their hand get tired while writing or coloring
What Causes Poor Handwriting Issues?
You know that feeling when you’ve been writing for a long time and your hand starts to cramp?It becomes difficult to pinch and hold the pencil properly and your lettering becomes more and more sloppy and inconsistent.
This happens to anybody after a particularly long writing session, but there might be more at play as well.
For some children, poor hand strength and lacking proper grip can make this feeling a constant reality.
Other factors that can cause poor handwriting include:
- Core support and posture issues
- Problems concentrating
- Difficulties interpreting visual information
At this point you might be aware your child is struggling with handwriting, but with the availability of computers, you may be wondering if it’s really a problem worth working on.
In this next section we’ll look at why poor handwriting issues are a problem that needs to be addressed.
Why Is Poor Handwriting Issues A Problem?
Much like music, art, drama, and dance, writing is a form of self expression that can help children get their thoughts and feelings out.
If a child struggles with handwriting it can lead to them to have problems expressing their thoughts through writing or drawing.
Even though phones and computers have taken over in schools and workplaces alike, writing is still a very important skill used daily in most school classrooms.
Struggling with poor handwriting can cause children to become frustrated or anxious at school and can also cause them to fall behind and do poorly on assignments.
Your child may also start avoid certain subjects that require them to write, something no parent wants their child to experience
Beyond all that, though, is the fact that poor handwriting can also be a symptom of another issue, like ADHD, that can affect other areas of your child’s life and development as they grow.
If you’ve recognized your child is having handwriting difficulties, early intervention is important.
Keep reading to learn how working with an occupational therapist might help your child with their poor handwriting issues.
How Can Pediatric Occupational Therapy For Poor Handwriting Issues Help?
Your child’s occupational therapist will start by working with you and your child to evaluate their needs and the possible causes of their poor handwriting issues.
Occupational therapy is not a one sizefitsall approach, so your pediatric occupational therapist will work with your child to determine what tools and solutions can best support them in overcoming their difficulties.
Depending on your child’s unique needs an occupational therapist will use a variety of techniques and activities to work with them on any or all of the following:
- Developing proper posture
- Learning to form and write letter properly
- Strengthening muscles
- Improving fine motor skills
Are you ready to schedule an occupational therapy evaluation for your child?
Handwriting is an important skill that your child will use daily throughout their life.
Taking steps now to support your child in dealing with their poor handwriting issues is something you’ll be happy you chose to pursue.
Book your appointment with Little Feet therapy today.
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