Our wonderful Rebecca came for another visit today! I’m going to get burned but I have to say it. Hands down she is my favorite therapist! That doesn’t mean I don’t love the others but it’s just amazing what she can get Jacob to do. Also, she was the one to sit down with him and diagnose the real problem with Jacob’s delays – hypotonia.
She made another one of her eye-opening declarations again today in our session.
A couple of weeks back, during Orange Week for playgroup therapy, I noted Jacob’s odd behavior when it came to being dragged on a sheet across the floor. They predicted that he would have problems with the swings as well, which he does. In addition to all of that, he had problems with the task that Rebecca wanted to work on for our therapy session today. She brought a little scooter board on wheels that she wanted Jacob to ride while on his stomach. He wouldn’t have anything to do with it! It took physical and verbal prompts from her and I to get him to even sit on it. It took even more coaxing from us to get him to stay put on the scooter while she moved him around the kitchen. He was hesitant but eventually complied. After some time of being on his rear, we encouraged him to go on his tummy, but again he was very hesitant. We actually used Joseph as an example which helped a bit. After several minutes with reassurance he did it. He was finally able to hold onto a jump rope while Rebecca pulled him around. He did an EXCELLENT job!
While all of this was going on I was telling Rebecca some of the other instances where movement has been an issue (ie. riding Papa’s scooter, slides, swings). She then proceeded to tell me about proprioception. Basically, it’s the sensors in the body (mainly the joints) that tell your brain where you are in space or relation to other objects. She thinks that somehow his hypotonia is affecting his proprioceptive receptors and making it harder for him to do simple sensory activities.
So even though we know his condition is not neurological we are now finding out that it is effecting more than just his ability to form muscles. His sense of touch is diminished because of it or at least in conjunction with it as well as his sense of locomotion.
Of course we’re piecing all of this together the last five minutes of our session so she’s making it a point to have another session with him at playgroup next Friday so that she can observe and work with him on some things. But one good tip she gave me was right before we start an activity that might cause him so extra anxiety because of the spacial discomfort that I’m supposed to give him deep pressure massage. Basically a big bear hug and working my way down each limb and that’s supposed to wake up his body. Pretty neat!