The effects of background white noise on memory performance in inattentive school children
I’m working on weaning off my basic sleep medication (my entire life, sleeping has been an issue) so that means I’m awake. Actually, it’s only 1030pm on a Saturday so that’s not crazy. But my best friend is spending the night (yes, we’re 29, but she lives in Tijuana across the border so this is easier!) and she went to bed an hour ago. So I feel like I’m up late!
I'm working on weaning off my basic sleep medication (my entire life, sleeping has been an issue) so that means I'm awake. Actually, it's only 1030pm on a Saturday so that's not crazy. But my best friend is spending the night (yes, we're 29, but she lives in Tijuana across the border so this is easier!) and she went to bed an hour ago. So I feel like I'm up late!
I enjoyed reading all four parts of this ADVANCE patient perspective series about a woman who had a spinal cord injury. I think more and more online sites are trying to get patient perspective which I love, I think that is the most interesting part of all.
Ethan wrote me a lovely e-mail a while ago and we corresponded briefly. He showed me this awesome infographic but I don’t have nearly the technical knowledge I need to know how to host it myself, so he wrote this up for me. I recommend checking out the infographic that he describes below, it’s quite nicely done! And while I’m not a fan of LOTS of screen time, in small doses, it’s awesome. 🙂 I know a lot of OT rehab clients at my first job loved working with the Wii, and the Kinect is even cooler these days. Anybody see Erik of OT Army Fame, in the tech session at AOTA conference, playing Star Wars? Soo funny. He uses it a lot with his veterans.
Often times we think of video gaming as something sedentary (sitting on the couch comes to mind), but several consoles have started reshaping the way we view video games — namely Nintendo’s Wii and Xbox Kinect. These video game consoles have more than just fun applications with your friends on a Friday night. Now, health professionals are finding new ways of using these devices to help people with illnesses and general health. Check out this infographic from Big Fish Games that talks a little bit more about how video games are improving our health.
I have deja vu, I think I’ve posted this before, but now I have a new system so it won’t happen again of re-posting pictures I find in Picasa. Anyway, great pre-writing skill. Take your little ones to the beach and practice vertical and horizontal lines!! 🙂
I think it's interesting to see how people's OT journeys progress from the pre-OT days. So this is a sweet girl who e-mailed me a long time ago and I just got an update on her. She said I could post her journey if I got rid of her name. 🙂
I decided to move from Washington state (where I’ve lived forever) to North Dakota for OT school! Well, hopefully! I am finishing my last pre-reqs this year, and will apply to OT school in December. I decided on this school because it was the most affordable for me (actually cheaper than staying in state, if you can believe that!). It’s been fun, the last few months, doing volunteer hours in preparation for applying to Grad school. After every facility I spend time at, I realize I am even more sure that this is the field I am meant for!
I have also been in touch with your pal Eric (Army OT guy). I had no idea they had a program like that, and it sounds pretty sweet. So hopefully I will get into the grad program at UND, then my next focus will be doing well so that I can hopefully go through the Army’s DScOT program! I don’t know, maybe I have some lofty goals – but I guess it’s better to dream big!
The W’s of W-Sitting
Although this is a common position to find a toddler sitting in, it comes with many implications of why it is not good. For those children who move in and out of the position for short periods of time, it can be looked upon as just a typical playing position that the child will outgrow. However, for many of the children we see in the therapy world, it can have a greater effect on a child’s overall development “W-sitting” inhibits exploration, does not allow for proper strengthening of the trunk, and keeps children confined to play only in midline. Effects of long-term “w-sitting” include hamstring tightness and tibial torsion and even hip dislocation. In addition, because it inhibits trunk rotation it also causes overall decreased balance and trunk control. The lack of trunk mobility causes children who utilize this position on a regular basis the inability to cross midline and explore as much during play.
One of the most common reasons children hang out in this position is low tone. Early on when children begin to crawl, you often find them stopping in the “w” position regardless of tone issues because they require a wider base of support at this stage. However, as they get stronger, you should be able to see them transition into a proper ring sitting position with ease. For the children who present with lower tone, they still require a wider base of support and will utilize a “w” due to ease, comfort, and stability. In addition, many of the children who do “w-sit” also present with tighter hamstrings, making it difficult and uncomfortable to sit in long sitting, “crisscross applesauce”, or ring sitting.
Ways to naturally work on correcting this it to utilize a toddler chair for sitting activities as much as possible, encouraging a 90-degree position of the hips and knees. When using larger chairs where the child’s feet do not touch the ground, the use of a stool will help obtain this position. Many children will be able to correct this position with verbal cuing, so you may often hear a parent, teacher or therapist use the phrase, “fix your legs” to cue the child to choose a different sitting position.
Ultimately, to help children move out of this position, choosing activities that strengthen the trunk and improve overall stability are beneficial. Those would include things such as the use of an exercise ball, yoga, and balance activities.
Exercise/therapy ball activities are great for trunk strengthening; from performing activities while sitting on the ball that encourage trunk rotation to using the ball for completing sit-ups, these are excellent ways to engage trunk muscles and work on balance. Activities performed in high kneel, such as drawing on a draw erase board or completing a bean bag target throw activity will also nicely engage that trunk muscles for strengthening. In addition, using a balance board for activities in sitting, such as completing a puzzle, or standing to play catch or Zoomball will also achieve this. Kid yoga programs, including Yogarilla from Super Duper are a fun way to introduce children to the overall core strengthening and attention improving art of yoga.
For those low tone children with tight hamstrings, performing leg stretches or utilizing target toss activities with obtaining bean bags from the floor or low stool with straight legs will help to loosen up the muscles. In turn, you find children are able to maintain the position of “criss-cross applesauce” with more ease.
Therefore, although “w-sitting” is very common among all children, similar to nail biting, it is one of those habits that if addressed early can really making a difference in overall development, especially for children with lower tone.
Some random pediatric OT ideas by Melissa…