Saturday, March 6, 2010

Therapeutic Listening Program -Oh what do your Ears hear?

How can what you hear affect how you behave?  Specifically how can listening to music help increase attention or make positive changes in behavior?  Sounds a little like hocus pocus?  That's what I thought when I was first introduced to the concept.  I am not a doctor or professional trained in this area, but I can say for certain that there is scientific reasons behind this and you can read more about it here

What is listening?
"Listening is the process of detecting sound and organizing and integrating it for use with information from other senses."
What is Therapeutic Listening?
Therapeutic Listening (TL) is an expansion of Sensory Integration. It is an auditory intervention
that uses the organized sound patterns inherent in music to impact all levels of the nervous system.
Auditory information from Therapeutic Listening CDs provides direct input to both the vestibular
and the auditory portions of the vestibular-cochlear continuum. The emphasis of TL is on
blending sound intervention strategies with vestibulo-proprioceptive, core development, and
breath activities so as to sustain grounding and centering of the body and mind in space and time.
Providing these postural, movement, and respiratory activities as part of the TL program is critical

Crash started the Therapeutic Listening Program when he was 2 1/2 years old.  I was a little hesitant at first because I knew how much controversy surround the results of the program.  After attending a conference on Therapeutic Listening Program by Shelia Frick I knew I had to try it.    We found an Occupational therapist certified in the program and began the 30 min listening sessions 2 times a day.  We incorporated swinging, crashing, and a variety of other activities designed to increase core strength and respiration, and we did some some positive changes.
  • After each listening session he seemed calmer.  
  • He was able to attend and focus for longer periods of time while wearing headphones. 
  • His communication skills increased
  • He seemed to become more social with other children
  • He seemed less sensitive to tactile and auditory information
I believe these changes were a result of the program, but they may also have happen as a result of the activities we were doing in addition to listening.  I would never tell someone to invest in this program, but I would recommend researching it, and making an informed decision on if you believe it would be a benificial experience for your child and family.

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