Solving sexuality problems in the context of occupational therapy practice in Latvia – experiences of patients and occupational therapists

Unda Avota, Zoja Osipova

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review

Abstract

This paper aims to identify experiences and related opinions among occupational therapists and patients on solving issues of sexual activity in the context of Latvian occupational therapy practice. In this qualitative - phenomenological study, five occupational therapists and five patients (with different functional states) were interviewed through semi-structured interviews. The research is based upon data thematic analysis method; the obtained data were transcribed and coded using MAXQDA2018 software. Sexuality in the context of occupational therapy in Latvia is not being adequately addressed; none of the surveyed patients had discussed sexuality issues with their occupational therapists. Whilst the surveyed occupational therapists had only touched such topics when the patients themselves had initiated it. Lack of their own competencies, limitations of the physical environment, stereotypical prejudices about sexuality, prioritization of other activities over sexual activities were mentioned as the main constraints for occupational therapists to actively initiate discussions with patients on sexuality problems.Patients noted that their or their partners' health condition had caused various types of sexual dysfunction and restrictions on sexual activity. Some of the patients would be willing to discuss these issues with the occupational therapist and everyone confirmed that someone from the health care professionals (including the occupational therapists) should ask the patients about their sexual health and the problems associated with it, as well as discuss the necessary interventions if the patient showed a willingness to address their sexuality problems. 1. At least some occupational therapists need additional education on sexuality issues in order to be able to use adequate intervention in solving sexual problems.2. It is necessary for health care professionals (including the occupational therapist) to provide the patient (and / or his / her spouse) with information about opportunities to discuss sexuality and sexual activity related problems in rehabilitation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages342
Publication statusPublished - 24 Mar 2021
Externally publishedYes
EventRSU Research week 2021: Knowledge for Use in Practice - Rīga, Latvia
Duration: 24 Mar 202126 Mar 2021
https://rw2021.rsu.lv/conferences/knowledge-use-practice

Conference

ConferenceRSU Research week 2021: Knowledge for Use in Practice
Abbreviated titleRW2021
CountryLatvia
CityRīga
Period24/03/2126/03/21
Internet address

Field of Science

  • 3.3 Health sciences

Publication Type

  • 3.4. Other publications in conference proceedings (including local)

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