Here at ABS, Occupational Therapists support children and their development in a number of ways. They help them to develop gross and fine motor skills, to deal with feeding challenges and to manage the way their body processes sensory information. All of these factors are important for success with self care, with building relationships, and with playing and learning. We begin the therapeutic process by attempting to understand the neurological underpinnings behind a particular child’s behaviors and patterns.
Once we assess the challenges a child is facing we work with the plasticity of their brains to support development, and adaptation. When neurological adaptation is not possible or not fast enough to meet the child’s current developmental needs, we work with the child and their family to develop ways to compensate.
We provide Occupational therapy at the following offices:
Many of the children we see have to manage an inconsistent or uncomfortable experience with sensation in their bodies. Sound, smells, touch, and even the feeling of their body in motion or working against gravity can be overwhelming, uncomfortable, or scary for a child when the way their brain is processing information prevents them from reacting in a useful way.
Challenges with sensory processing can impact attention, emotional regulation, coordination, and their ability to socially interact. It can lead to avoidance or behaviors that others may not understand and that make it difficult to successfully participate in the world around them. It can also cause children to be emotionally dysregulated and can lead to maladaptive behavior like excessive tantruming, self harming, and elopement. Here at ABS, Occupational Therapists try to provide a safe space for kids to explore their sensory needs, learn ways to manage them, and to help their brains adapt.
How We Start
Like many other members on the ABA
We want the children we see to feel confident, balanced, coordinated, and strong in their bodies so that feelings of discoordination and
Gross and Fine Motor Skills
Many of the kids we see have gross and fine motor deficits. These could be the result of avoidance patterns, low arousal or inconsistent balance and postural control. Helping kids develop skills in order to better manage safe play, participation in future academics, and self-care is a big priority for Occupational Therapists.
How We Work Together
One of the many strengths of working at ABS is that the opportunities for implementing a team approach are very frequent. We collaborate with the behavior therapists by providing sensory strategies for attention, regulation, and to maximize success during the programs they run. They, in turn provide us with information about the home environment and how well skills acquired in sessions are working in the rest of the child’s daily routine.
Sensory strategies are also provided to speech therapists to support the attention and flexibility which are so important for getting maximum benefit out of Speech Therapy Sessions. In turn they inform us about the child’s cognitive patterns and challenges with language so that we can integrate and renforce the strategies they are using into the gross and fine motor play that is happening in OT. With clinical psychologists here at ABS, the Occupational Therapists work to understand where the neuroscience of sensory processing and motor performance is overlapping with psychological patterns. It is a privilege to work with all of these clinicians to support all aspects of development and to provide one another with useful strategies.