Teeth brushing sensory issues… a new experience


Had a session on toothbrushing today….

These two kitties have visual issues so it’s appropriate for tomorrow’s seminar 😉

Slept until almost noonish after going to sleep around 430am. Went in for 1:30 appt and saw beautiful little Arabic girl with autism, she is so cute. She likes to say “Whoooahh” and her newest thing is “That’s not right!” We worked on several of her goals – it was a speech co-treat – and she did pretty well. Things like completing a 5-piece interlocking puzzle, etc. At the end I took her to the bathroom and when she was washing her hands she splashed her face with water (on purpose) , then said “Whooah! That’s not right!” I was like, ahahahaha.

Did some more organizational stuff – working on clearing out our kid’s folders so that we can just have the newest plan of care with goals, plus newest progress reports, in it…not have to sort through tons of papers.

We had a few kids sneak in last minute either as walk-ins or last minute appointments so things got a little crazy for a while but it all worked out over all.

I saw a little girl with Down syndrome who has gotten very defiant lately, I had her do an obstacle course involving giving her a puzzle piece, having her crawling through a tunnel (crawling is awesome for brain development), maneuvering her way around a giant bolster by rolling over it, jumping on a trampoline ten times, ducking under it, then placing the puzzle piece into the puzzle. She did great, but then melted down and wanted her mom, which is typical these days. I “fought” with her a little in the hallway, but I wasn’t going to like, body-slam her, and she is strong, so I finally joined her to go out to get her mom, since she wasn’t giving up. We brought mom in back and the little girl did some pulling silly objects out of Theraputty before doing a snake/ball in Play-doh. Her mom mentioned wanting to have her work on tying her shoes, so we’ll start that.

Also saw an older black boy with Down syndrome – he came up behind me and tickled me without warning – lol. He performed several death-defying leaps with the bolster that could have been disastrous, ugh. We did some work on letters and some “fast fast fast” pegboard stuff.

My interesting-est session of the day…

Saw a kid who has severe sensory issues and frustration/self-expression issues. I had wanted to plan him a neat art therapy session but the last-minute schedule changes meant I didn’t have time to plan anything elaborate. He wanted to play computer games and did NOT want to work on brushing his teeth (he can’t tolerate the toothpaste according to Grandma), so we did a “happy” art paper where he drew a computer, and a “sad” art paper where we drew a toothbrush. I let him play some computer games a while – pbskids.com, nickjr.com both have amazing games, then we worked on toothbrush stuff. I put some toothpaste into a plastic bag to let him squish it around as he can’t tolerate touching it, so a plastic bag lets him explore it safely and is a good first step. I also used toothpaste to draw a picture and encouraged him to use his finger to help, but he had none of that, LOL.

I also played silly sensory games with him, having him pat his cheeks, bite on his finger, stick out his tongue, smile, etc. It turns out he is fine with a toothbrush by itself in his mouth – he ate an entire thing of applesauce using his toothbrush as a spoon – but that its specifically this toothpaste that makes him freak out. He is a big sensory kid – the thought of peanut butter in his mouth makes him cry for example. I set a timer for 10 seconds and let him see how short a time that was, then encouraged him to hold the toothbrush (which now had toothpaste on it much to his dismay) close to his teeth for 10 seconds with the timer….progress, not perfection, LOL. I chatted with grandma afterward (she says he screams as if he is having his teeth brushed with razorblades), the dentists want him on that specific toothpaste type because he’s already had several dental surgeries and has a horrible mouth – I asked grandma about other types of toothpaste to at least get him to start, and she mentioned he was okay with those flavored kid’s things you use for kids first starting to brush teeth, but they aren’t abrasive enough for his poor teeth….so we discussed starting to mix those together a tiny bit…etc. I have to admit at first when handed his toothbrush and toothpaste I was like augh! I have no idea how to work on this with him!

But it seemed like it was okay overall…I didn’t want to push him too hard. Discussed with grandma getting some cheap toothpaste to put into a bag to play with safely, to let him smell the toothpastes, to try and work on coloring with it, to play the silly sensory games with his face, etc….

Ended the session with a bubble machine which he loved….and it was now end of day so finished getting stuff together as tomorrow I am not there…

Met up with Allison and her roomie and we went walking. Made myself scrambled eggs with roasted mini peppers and cheese for dinner….that’s like a massive deal and worthy of noting since normally I refuse to cook ANYTHING. I also decided to clorox the kitchen walls, wipe off the trash can, wipe off the soap dispenser, and do other ridiculous things instead of say, sleep…

Next week my OT is back and so is the clinical director, and we are in the new clinic Monday Tuesday and Wednesday, then Thursday in normal clinic, and Friday not sure yet…but I’m frustrated with how much we are traveling, because it often takes me 45 minutes to get to meeting point, then another 30-45 minutes to get to location, so I’m in a car over a 100 miles + several hours pretty much every time we go to the new clinic…originally it was twice a week but it’s become more like 3-4x a week lately, boooo.

Ok…it’s 1:30am and my plan to be in bed by 10pm was obviously not a very realistic one since the whole cleaning my house obsessively thing took over…oh well. Okay gotta get up at 6:30, let’s hope adrenaline gets me through the day!

Tomorrow afternoon I hope to excitedly tell y’all how all the blind babies of Missisippi are going to be saved based on the information gained in the seminar. Or at least tell “all y’all” it was awesome.

Aug 15, 2008 | Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 1

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