Pencil grasp - Occupational Therapy

May 25, 2020

Does my kid’s pencil grasp need fixing? How am I supposed to know? 

Like any other milestones (rolling over -> crawling -> first steps -> walking -> running), pencil grasp has its own progression.  

1. Fist grasp 

2. Digital Pronate grasp 

3. Tripod grasp: This is the IDEAL pencil grasp!  

OR

Quadrapod grasp: Sometimes the child might be using 4 fingers (everything in tripod grasp + the ring finger) to control the pencil. This is also a functional grasp.  

There are many other kinds of grasps too! Hold a pencil yourself and see what your grasp is like. The only time when we are looking to “fix” a pencil grasp is when the child’s grasp is considered inefficient/less functional. 

When the pencil grasp is inefficient or less functional it would usually result in the following which OT’s can help with assessing a child’s pencil grasp and implement therapy if: 

- The grasp is causing stress on joints of the hand and putting the child’s hand in a position that places unnecessary strain on joints that we want (and need) working well for a very long time! 

- The grasp is causing pain/fatigue on the hand after writing during tasks. This could then lead to avoidance of tasks that involve writing (including homework!)  

- Writing speed is heavily compromised for legible handwriting. We all know that all everything in school is time sensitive – whether it is copying off the board, writing in an exam or just keeping up with peers and if a child is having difficulty with this, then it needs to be addressed.  

If you are looking for occupational therapy assessment or intervention, contact us to arrange an appointment at our new centre in Oak Rd, Kirrawee. Email info@kidsinspired.com.au 

- Christine

 

 

 

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