Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Mandy Meyer


Aged; Prescription Drugs; Substance-Related Disorders -- complications


One of Occupational Therapists' primary responsibilities is to assist clientele at becoming as independent as possible. In order to be successfully independent an individual needs to be able to perform ADLs and IADLs (functional occupations) and have a basic understanding of problematic issues that may affect their abilities to perform these functional occupations. Misusing prescription medication is one way is which functional occupations can be negatively impacted. Specifically, prescription medication misuse is one of the primary issues that may impact elderly individuals' abilities to function independently. Even though this is an issue that needs to be addressed, research into the topic and it's implications in Occupational Therapist-based treatments have had minimal focus.

This scholarly project focused on the existing literature and assessments that Occupational Therapists can do in regard to misuse of prescription medication. By educating Occupational Therapists on the manifestations of common prescription medication misuses in the elderly population and the applicable functional assessments utilized to evaluate elderly individuals' abilities in performing successful functional occupations, Occupational Therapists may aid the primary physician in making a diagnosis to improve or enhance elderly individuals' quality of life that otherwise may be hindered through misusing prescription medication.