Setting Straight Therapy Myths
If you, your pediatrician, your child’s teacher or someone else important in your child’s life just told you that your child would benefit from physical, occupational, or speech and language therapy services you are probably feeling a little overwhelmed and uncertain about what to expect.
Some questions you may have about your child’s therapy
- Will they put my child on a couch and talk to him/her?
- Will they attach electrodes to the affected area?
- Will they run my child through a rigorous exercise routine?
The answer to all of these questions is NO.
Unlike adolescents and adults, most children can’t understand why therapy services are beneficial, and therefore can’t be motivated by the potential end result of therapy alone. However, pediatric therapists are very skilled in understanding what is motivating for all children …play!
Your child’s therapist will set attainable goals for your child that will be accomplished through activities that are play-based. For example if you child has delayed motor skills your child’s therapist may use equipment such as swings, a trampoline, a ball pit, and other pieces of equipment or toys to improve motor skills.
Therapists Work To Build Strong Relationships With Children
The relationship between the child and their therapist is also very important, as your child will likely be spending time with this therapist at least weekly. Children, like adults, are more trusting and compliant with someone they like versus someone they don’t like. Therefore, from the minute your child’s therapist meets your child, they will work on building a positive trusting relationship. As some children are more hesitant by nature, this trust sometimes takes a few weeks to be established.
Children typically really enjoy coming to therapy. In fact, it is often difficult to pry them and their siblings off the equipment, although this problem is one that most therapists are glad to have!