What is the first step?
Call and schedule an intake appointment. For children this includes an assessment visit (30-45 minutes) and a follow-up meeting with parents to discuss the results and a treatment plan (60 minutes). These visits are usually 4-6 days apart. For adults, the process is a bit different, depending upon individual needs. Usually an intake for an adult is the same length as a session (50 minutes).
What is a developmental movement pattern?
Our bodies and brains are organized through movement, especially those movements that occur during the first year of life. These fundamental movements follow one another in an important and orderly sequence. For example, many of us will recall the memory of a baby, lying on her tummy, who then lifts up her head and rolls over or pushes herself up into a sitting position. These sequential movements are an integral part of early development and if skipped, or done only partially, can result in obstructions or problems in the development of sense perceptions, bodily movements and thinking.
For example, many of our clients missed the stage of crawling on the belly, commonly referred to asarmy crawling. During this stage horizontal eye-tracking, a skill necessary for fluent reading, is developed. As a result of missing this stage many of our clients have difficulty reading. They get headaches, sore, tired eyes and can only read for short periods of time before needing a break. In school usually they are reading below grade level, have low comprehension and do not enjoy reading, a handicap they carry into their adult years.
What are primitive reflexes?
Primitive reflexes are instinctual bodily movements that are universal, automatic and rhythmical. They happen unconsciously without involvement of the cortex of the brain. These reflexes, which emerge in utero, ensure the baby's active participation during birth and her survival in the early months of life. They also provide the foundation for the subsequent development of all voluntary skills, physical, emotional and cognitive. However, they task specific. They show up, do their job, and trigger the next reflex as they are integrated into the whole body dynamic. When they are not integrated, they can prevent the maturation of the child’s nervous system, interfering with its efficient organization, and thus cause a variety of difficulties in bodily coordination, attention, learning and skill acquisition. Unintegrated reflexes also contribute to social immaturity and anxiety in both children and adults.
How does the treatment at Sage Education Center work?
The neural pathways that primitive reflexes make are overwritten, not erased, by more advanced movements. They can be reactivated through exercises that mimic them. Initially an assessment is made of the extent of unintegrated reflexes and incomplete developmental movement patterns. Subsequently, a treatment plan is designed to address the client’s individual needs. By revisiting the missed steps and integrating unintegrated reflexes, the brain can be reorganized to create a nervous system that works efficiently.
What does treatment look like?
here are 3 components to treatment: In-house Treatment with a therapist; Take-home Treatment (homework), and Environmental Adaptations.
In-House Treatment: At the clinic we revisit movement patterns seen in infancy and early childhood. We spend most of our time on the floor. The therapist guides the client through each activity in a manner that is non-threatening and comfortable. For children, treatment is playful and enjoyable, and most children look forward to coming to sessions. For adults, it is common for the movement aspect of treatment to move a bit slower to allow time for checking in and processing as needed.
Take-home Treatment: The nervous system requires frequent input in order to make changes. Clients will be given activities to repeat at home in a daily rhythm in order to support the changes the nervous system needs to make.
Environmental Adaptations: There are certain environmental triggers that can get in the way of making progress and there are those that can support progress. At the onset of treatment, clients are given a list of adaptations to make in order to best support the work they are doing. Some examples include drinking lots of water, reducing exposure to media, reducing the level of stress on the body by the intake of simple carbohydrates, for instance.
Frequently asked questions
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