KidPT
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Movement Magic of Tree Fu Tom

A new interactive tv show on Sprout called Tree Fu Tom has made its way over the pond from the UK. It is aimed at children ages 3-7 and my 4 year old has been asking to watch it again and again.

The show is about a boy named Tom who shrinks and turns into a cartoon to enter the world of his garden. Tom and his friends encounter challenges and have to problem solve solutions. This is where the magic comes in. Read more

How Can Physical Therapy Affect Social Skills?
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How Can Physical Therapy Affect Social Skills?

If you have a child who has difficulty with social skills and I asked you what kind of therapy could help your child develop these skills, what would you say?

I can guarantee physical therapy wouldn’t be on that list.  Not even on the bottom of the list.   Read more

Dyspraxia
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Dyspraxia: Conquering the Motor Challenges

Re-posted from OUR Journey Thru Autism

“I’m doing it! I’m doing it!” yells an exuberant 8 year-old boy as he rides away from me on his bike. This young boy has a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and dyspraxia and was so frightened to just sit on his bike with training wheels 4 months ago that he held on to me for dear life. Today he rides away from me on a two-wheeled bike on his own and tomorrow he will ride with his brother through the neighborhood. Read more

Autism and Vaccination

Autism and Vaccines

For many of us who have a loved one with autism or work with children with autism, the vaccine debate is not something new.  It is one that has been on my mind more over the last couple of years as I have done research to help me make decisions about how and when to vaccinate my daughter.  It comes up frequently with parents of  some of the children that I work with as they recount their stories and I have also treated children with “medically accepted” vaccination injuries. Read more

therapueticplaywithplaydough
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Therapeutic Play With Playdough

Playdough can be a great tool to strengthen the hands and for imaginary play.  It can also be a great tool for increasing sensory awareness of the feet.  It can also be used to challenge balance in standing like in this video, or it can be done in sitting too.  Have fun trying it out!

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Tippy Toes

Children walk on their toes for various different reasons. Medical causes such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy must be ruled out. This link is a good overview of toe-walking in general. I want to address some of the physical therapy specific aspects of toe-walkers. Read more

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Discussion on “Does Your Baby Have Autism?” by Teitelbaum and Teitelbaum

As a pediatric physical therapist specializing in developmental disabilities, I have worked with a lot of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) over the past 10 years. After several months of physical therapy, I frequently saw how related areas of development, such as communication and social skills, would improve after addressing their motor deficits. Read more

Motor Deficits in Children with Autism and Related Disorders

Joni Daichman, MSPT, Tracy Cueli-Dutil, DPT and Roberto Tuchman, M.D

Paper presented at the Geneva Centre Internal Symposium on Autism, Toronto, Canada (October 2002)

There has been an increased interest in the relationship between motor function, cognition, attention, language development and social communication disorders over the last few years.(Gillberg 1998; Landgren, Kjellman et al. 1998; Kadesjo and Gillberg 1999) The purpose of this brief report is to review the sensorimotor system as it applies to autism and related disorders. In addition we will discuss and highlight the motor clinical findings in children with autism and related disorders and provide preliminary data on our own clinical experience.  Read more

Autism and Physical Therapy

Autism Spectrum Disorders and Physical Therapy: The Motor Connection

Originally published in Autism Spectrum, Winter 2005

Movement is an integral part of our social, emotional, and physical lives. A 4-month old excitedly kicks her arms and legs in response to the funny face dad makes, so he does it again. An 8-month old will crawl to retrieve her favorite rattle, shake it to hear the sound it makes, and then look at mom to share the experience with her. An 18 month-old takes moms hand, walks her to the kitchen, and says “juice” while pointing to the refrigerator. As a child grows, the length and complexity of movement sequences become more sophisticated. Read more

Autism In Haiti

The destruction in Haiti made me think about how children with autism and other disabilities are coping and surviving.  I found the following article on a center for children in Haiti with developmental disabilities.  The work they had done is so admirable, but now they are going to be starting over again.        

via Autism in Haiti | Autism Support Network.