Therapy at Kelly B. Todd

Courtney WaggleUncategorized

DC is a boy in middle childhood with history of autism spectrum disorder and speech delay. DC has received occupational therapy at Kelly B. Todd Cerebral Palsy and Neuromuscular Foundation for approximately 1.5 years addressing the following concerns: sensory and emotional regulation for sensory processing differences and emotional wellness, decreased independence in age-appropriate self-care activities, and delayed fine motor milestones. DC being much more sensitive to tactile and oral sensory input made it difficult for him to tolerate daily sensory stimuli included in grooming and eating foods. He is empathetic and feels strongly about unexpected events/situations and changes in his routine, and situations in which someone is treated wrongly/unfairly. While feeling strongly, DC has had difficulties in both identifying these feelings and communicating them to respective individuals which are foundational to then identifying coping or regulatory tools. DC’s fine motor delays limited his independence in his ability to complete lower body dressing and manipulate fasteners successfully. Through occupational therapy in direct services and parent education, DC developed age-appropriate fine motor skills and understanding/use of tools to help him cope with difficult sensory stimuli or regulate in difficult emotional situations. DC went from requiring moderate assist (25-50%) with lower body dressing (threading feet through pants, donning pants over hips, donning socks and shoes, and tying shoes) to completing all steps with independence by his discharge date. DC progressed in familiarity and comfort with some tactile and oral sensory input, tolerating haircuts and nail trimming, and occasionally trying new foods. He progressed to being able to identify his feelings in particular social interactions or changes in routine that allowed for him to communicate with his parent to co-regulate acknowledge the difficulty in the moment and work toward resolution when ready. Some tools that helped DC in this arena are visual schedules and social stories. While successes in emotional wellness can be situational and is a long-term effort, DC’s parents were receptive to education to carry-over use of empathetic listening and other tools to new situations as they arise in daily life. With consistent private, one-on-one therapy sessions, DC met the goals set by his therapist and parents and was able to graduate from occupational therapy.