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Despite the importance of maternal health during the prenatal, postnatal, and parenting stages, there is a lack of research on the role of occupational therapists (OTs) in addressing the occupational challenges faced by women during this transitional phase. This dissertation aims to develop a program that raises awareness of the role of occupational therapy in maternal health and promotes occupational therapists as part of an interdisciplinary team within the scope of maternal health care. By adapting co-occupation for mothers, occupational therapists can play an important role in individualizing occupations for enhanced transitioning and overall quality of life. The study highlights the gap in the existing literature and emphasizes the need for OTs to provide interventions that address occupational performance issues for women during the transitional and adjusting stages of pregnancy. The paper also explores the challenges faced by young mothers and the psychosocial factors that impact their long-term health and well-being. The occupational adaption frame of reference is used to develop a model that integrates the two main domains of occupation and adaptation to improve adaptability. The study concludes that OTs could play a vital role in addressing the occupational challenges faced by women during the maternal role transition and advocates for the development, research, and education of this specialized field.

Publication Date

Spring 4-17-2024


University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences


Occupational Therapy, Maternal Health, Postpartum, Parenting, Occupational Adaptation, Psychosocial Factors, Maternal Mental Health, Client-Centered Practice, Occupational Performance, Transitional Phases, Pregnancy, Quality of Life, Return to Work, Postpartum Period, Depression, Breast Feeding

Medical Subject Headings

Pregnancy, Occupational Therapy, Occupational Therapists, Maternal Health, Parenting, Quality of Life, Return to Work, Occupations, Postpartum Period, Depression, Breast Feeding, Return to School, Education


Maternal and Child Health | Medicine and Health Sciences | Mental and Social Health | Occupational Therapy | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Public Health | Rehabilitation and Therapy | Women's Health


Poster presented at the Virtual OTD Capstone Symposium held online at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences on April 10-17, 2024.

Preparatory Program for Women during Pregnancy/Postpartum and Transitioning back to Work or School