We’ve now been going to therapy, almost every Monday, for about 2 months. I’m thankful we were able to get them scheduled back to back in the afternoon. It fits in perfectly with our schedule and I get a 1.5 hour break while they wear him out! It’s pretty amazing! He’s doing awesome, and we love his therapists; although, one is moving next week, I’m sure we’ll love her replacement.
He is in both OT and speech. OT works with him on sensory integration and fine motor. Speech is working to get him caught up so he can be more clearly understood by others.
His speech delays are mainly articulation, use of pronouns and position words, use of tense, and understanding concepts and questions. He skips the articles (a, an, the) and mushes his words together when saying a full sentence, so our goal is to slow him down and emphasize the words he tends to skip. He typically only uses the male pronouns, so we are correcting him when this happens. We are working hard on helping him use position words. He can understand several (on, in, over, under) but he uses none. 😬 If you ask him where something is, he’ll point and say it’s right there, rather than saying it’s on the table. (He’s at about the level of a 12-18 month old in this area, which elxplain a lot about why some math concepts are challenging for him. He’s above average in some math skills and well-below average in others. Once he gets this concept down, I’m positive his math abilities are going to soar! His ST has assured us this is solely a language issue and is not indicative of intelligence.)
In OT, they are working on sensory integration and fine motor. They have him doing wet, dry, try handwriting (which is actually part of the handwriting curriculum I chose for him for this fall, before they introduced it to him). He loves it and is excited to do it all on his own every day. I just leave his little chalkboard, sponges, and chalk out for him to use. There are 4 steps: I draw a letter, he traces it with the wet sponge, then with the dry sponge, then finally writes it with the chalk. In addition to this, they also do fun activities like playing with theraputty and goop to strengthen his hand and arm muscles.
For sensory integration, they have us doing brushing and joint compressions 3-6 times a day. When we are consistent (harder than it sounds), we notice a big difference. It’s actually pretty amazing. This only takes about 2-3 minutes but it’s hard to drop what we are doing and remember to do it every 1.5-2 hours throughout the day.
They are also working with him on giving him all the sensory input he’s seeking (vestibular and proprioception) and encourage him in the areas he avoids (visual, auditory, and tactile). I’m not exactly sure of all that they do but I know the highlights include a light show, cocoon swing, water balloons, shaving cream, animal band, and balls. He runs out to me after every session, excited to tell me he did good and had fun. It’s been a huge blessing to have these therapists who are so good at their job in our lives. (And thank you insurance for picking up most of the cost!)
Finally, he’s in counseling therapy every other week to try to help with his anxiety. At this stage, it’s mostly his therapist giving up tips and suggestions of things to try. Most have not worked but we are still plugging away, knowing his age and maturity is the biggest thing holding him back. I’m not sure if we’ll continue every other week or take a break until he matures a bit, but for now, since insurance is covering it, we’ll keep going.