So schedules got a bit mixed up and I ended up with both therapists today. Which although they didn’t really work with Finn together while here, they did provide me with info and tips which got me thinking…
I need to suck up as much info as possible. These guys won’t be around for much longer so rather than expect some miracle to happen during these 1 hour sessions, I should be asking as many questions as possible to either learn how to do things myself or have them show me what to do. I think working on the whole idea of him interacting and getting comfortable with them is not as important as I initially thought.
Like I said they won’t be here in another 6 months and Finn “getting comfortable” about anyone is a fading task in and off itself. Finn can get used to anyone but then if they leave for a period of a few weeks it’s like they’ve never met, so working on that alone is not that important to me anymore. It is however important that he becomes less anxious when introduced to new people (even if that means they are new to him, and not actually a first time meet).
I got some valuable tips though and here they are…
GRINDING TEETH/CHEWING CUP – They suggested I buy a chewy tube. What the hell is a chewy tube? are innovative oral motor devices designed to provide a resilient, non-food, chewable surface for practicing biting and chewing skills. I just ordered mine. I will post a review once we get it and if this helps Finn’s desire to not break his plastic cuppy with his teeth anymore.
NAKED FREEDOM – Finn has been ripping his diaper off repeatedly and while for typical toddlers this may be a sign of potty-training readiness, we just are not at that point yet without and further establishment of stronger communication. We find at night he is taking up to 4 hours to go to sleep. He jumps around and is filled with excitement once all is calm and quiet and he is all alone. We do sing to him on a nightly basis and have a starlit nightlight humidifier. He just rips everything off. So it was suggested to use a weighted blanket. Now many of what I saw where just too expensive. So I just tried a little cheap trick, multiple blankets. I put on his favorite blanket next to his face to cuddle and put his next then at last I nice heavy soft big blanket. This in combination with the next activity has helped so far for the last two days at nap time. He just laid down and went right to bed. SLEEP ISSUES – So the OT suggested I do sensory activity Wilbarger Brushing Protocol. Here is more info: http://www.child-behavior-guide.com/wilbarger-brushing-protocol.html. I will be doing this starting this soon to see the effects in a week with our therapist.
HYPERACTIVITY – This is also goes along with sleep challenges. It has been suggested to use Oils, like a Lavendar Scent to try and calm Finn before bed. We can rub the oils on him or even use in the bath. I came across a good Epsom Salt Bath recipe with Lavendar Oil I want to try out. Stay Tuned. I also saw some info about the use of Diffusers. One company that gets a lot of props from ASD mom is YoungLiving, but honestly I think their prices are outrageous. I did however see people selling samples on Amazon and some purchased but unused bottles that I may try. Or possibly try a local Farmers Market by me that sells Essential Oils.TOE WALKING – Create a sensory path for your child to walk on. This will force them to put their feet flat to feel the different textures and levels, therefore improving their gate. This strategy addresses the tactile processing in general, and the information of the foot sole in particular. This is done by creating a multi-texture path for the child to walk on with bare feet randomly, during the day, whenever he feels like it, without any direct request from you, the parent. There is no scientific study that I have found that explains why children with autism toe walk and become adults with a particular gait. Try doing twice a day 5-10min intervals.