services offered





How can OT help?

The aim of an OT Assessment is to look at the way your chronic condition is impacting your life and the ways we can help change those impacts. That might be through:
  • exercises
  • education
  • changing the way you’re doing things
  • modifying the environment; or
  • giving you assistive devices to help you complete tasks e.g. jar opener.


People usually come to an occupational therapist when they’re having difficulty with some aspect of daily life; when something needs changing.


Those things could be:
For people with hypermobility or rheumatological conditions, there may be additional issues:
  • managing joint dislocations or subluxations
  • chronic pain
  • learning to manage fatigue
  • requiring splints
  • needing tips for sleeping
  • finding ways to engage in pleasurable activities
  • not wanting to leave the house for fear of pain or injury
  • managing medication side effects
  • knowing where to shop for friendly shoes
  • understanding the benefits of exercise
  • finding appropriate braces and splints
  • finding therapists who can help
The list does not end here. Occupational Therapy is about helping you to engage in the activities and tasks you need, want or are expected to do. That means the scope of what we can help with is extremely vast. Our role is to assess you (physical ability, skills, cognitive skills), assess the task & environment and the match between them. If there is a disparity, we aim to help lessen it. THAT is our role.

What does an assessment cover?

Personal Care

From brushing your teeth, showering and washing your hair, to drying yourself & toileting, personal care involves all the things you would normally do more privately.


Putting on and taking off clothing, putting on socks and shoes, doing up buttons, zippers and clasps. These all fall into the realm of dressing in an occupational therapy assessment

Meal Preparation & Eating

From preparing food and cooking meals, to eating, taking care of dishes and safety in the kitchen. Meal prep and eating are a big part of our lives and therefore a big part of an occupational therapy assessment.


Assessing how you function in your place of employment is also part of an occupational therapy assessment.


Being able to move around our environment is extremely important to our ability to participate in activities of daily living, which is why this is an important part of our assessment process.

Social Interactions

Being able to socialise is a big part of what makes us human. An occupational therapy assessment will look at your social needs & goals.


Leisure activities and hobbies are an important part of a balanced life. We include this in our assessment because of the importance of being able to pursue pleasurable activities.

Emotional & Mental Wellbeing

Living with a chronic condition can have a huge impact on mental health. We briefly assess mental health status, needs and goals as part of our assessment.

Why assessments and little follow up?

Assessments give people the chance to get a big picture overview of where things are at with their condition. Our aim is to look at where things can change to help you improve your quality of life. We will look at functioning in day to day activities (ADLs), make recommendations for therapies, adaptive equipment, splinting and other necessary & helpful changes.


The aim here is that you follow these recommendations up with your GP, physiotherapist and other treating team. We are available for limited follow up to clarify any of the recommendations. If you don’t currently see one of the professions we recommend, we will do our best to help you find someone appropriate in your area.


A lot of the education that we used to provide in follow up sessions will soon be available via online courses, and occasional face to face workshops. This frees up therapists to see more people for their big picture sessions and get them on their way to living a more satisfying life with their condition.

Why Rheumi Occupational Therapy?

The uniqueness of the Rheumi Occupational Therapy service lies in Michelle’s extensive experience helping people to live as fully as possible with hypermobility & other chronic conditions. Michelle is able to offer you a big picture assessment of your needs, with individual recommendations on what steps to take next. Michelle’s experience working with adults with hypermobility conditions is unmatched by any Occupational Therapist in this country.


Post-assessment recommendations may involve:
  • referral to other therapists to see for ongoing therapy
  • prescribing equipment
  • providing education & resources, and
  • linking you in with peer support (where possible).


Having built up a network of professional colleagues across Australia, Michelle is often able to find a therapist in the area who is able to help you work towards your goals.


Everyone’s presentation and needs are different. That’s why at Rheumi Occupational Therapy, no two people are given the same list of recommendations. Our assessments follow the lead of the information you share with us, helping to paint a picture of what is problematic for you, and what needs addressing. Our recommendations are a response to those identified needs.


Whether you live with hypermobility, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia or another rheumatological presentation, Rheumi Occupational Therapy is equipped to assess your situation and provide professional advice on how to move forward.
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