Consultation for Sensory diets, sensory processing concerns and Floortime Programming
Parents spend more time with their children than all of their teachers and therapists combined. By training parents to be their child’s best partner, the child receives intensive (more hours), high quality intervention. Through consultation I will show you practical ways of making every interaction with your child a growing and learning experience. Bath-time, meals, outdoor play: each of these daily routines can be used to help your child build meaningful relationships.
Floortime based programming
Floortime based programming begins with an evaluation in the home. Home visits allow me to see your child in the place where he/she is most comfortable, so I can see how he/she acts most naturally. The initial assessment determines your child’s comfort zone activities and ways to engage them “where they are at”. A comprehensive plan is developed to help your child meet social and relationship milestone. I will videotape segments of the home visits, to monitor your child’s progress and give suggestions for more effective techniques. This allows me and the family to design and implement an individual Floortime-based program for your child. Consultation provides an evaluation, four direct training sessions and once monthly monitoring sessions for one year.
Sensory diet/Sensory integration
The sensory diet, a term coined by OT Patricia Wilbarger, is a way of feeding the nervous system for optimal growth and learning. It is a carefully designed, personalized program that provides the specific sensory input a person’s nervous system needs to function throughout the day. All humans learn through their senses.
Children with autism spectrum disorders often have trouble accessing these channels for learning. This results in various behaviors from seemingly aimless wandering to crashing into furniture and peers or humming and flapping hands. These behaviors meet sensory needs and parents can help children find acceptable and efficient ways to meet their sensory needs through a sensory diet. A sensory diet is a family-centered approach to providing sensory integration based therapy to meet the needs of a specific child and family.
The sensory diet will be developed by gina taylor, an occupational therapist, and can be implemented by a parent, a teacher, or any other involved adult. Typically, the sensory activities are scheduled to work within the regular activity routine and assure a sensory activity as needed to maintain optimal arousal. The sensory diet requires occasional updates as children change and grow and Epona Therapy Services provides ongoing support for families utilizing a Sensory diet in their treatment program.
The concept of a Sensory Diet is based on Jean Ayers work in Sensory Integration. Sensory integration is an innate neurobiological process and refers to the integration and interpretation of sensory stimulation from the environment by the brain and formulating an adaptive response. The theory is used to explain the relationship between the brain and behavior and explains why individuals respond in a certain way to sensory input and how it affects behavior. Sensory Integration theory can provide us with a comprehensive model for understanding the areas of human performance that are affected by Autism. Sensory Integration theory provides a guide for understanding the behaviors we observe in children with Autism. In understanding of the influences that sensory input and sensory organization on the development of human performance abilities; we can view a good road map for understanding and developing assessment and treatment (sensory integration therapy). Traditional sensory integrative therapy takes place on a 1:1 basis in a room with varying movement and sensory experiences. The goal of therapy is not to teach skills, but to follow the child’s lead and artfully select and modify activities according to the child’s responses. The activities afford the “just right” challenge for the child to promote increasingly more complex adaptive responses to environmental challenges. The result is improved performance of skills that relate to life roles.