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Treatment Terminology

Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT): A treatment approach using hands-on techniques to facilitate or inhibit muscles to allow better movement patterns. The treatment is based on following normal developmental progression and on avoidance of abnormal movement patterns. Most of our therapists incorporate NDT into their treatment, and some have taken long-term certification courses to become more skilled in this approach.

Strengthening: Many children with delayed motor skills have weakness in some areas. We provide strengthening through developmental skills. One example is encouraging squatting to pick up toys to strengthen hip and thigh muscles. Another example is working with a baby on her tummy on the ball to provide support while strengthening neck and back muscles.

Stretching: The therapist will incorporate stretching into treatment when muscles or joints are tight. Using play helps the children tolerate the stretches. One example is having a child play, sitting, reaching forward for toys to stretch the backs of the legs. We also use equipment to aid in stretches, such as walking up and down an incline to stretch the ankles.

Facilitation/Inhibition Techniques: If muscles have too high or too low tone or if a child simply has difficulty using certain muscles, the therapist will use a variety of hands-on ways to help muscles work better.

Tscharnuter Akademie of Movement Organization (TAMO): A treatment technique developed by Ingrid Tscharnuter. Therapists trained in this technique use gentle hands-on techniques to help teach the child new ways to move.

Sensory/Body Awareness: Many children with delayed motor skills have problems with body awareness or with processing sensory information. Some activities that address these issues include the use of weights, taping or vests to give input; use of deep pressure to increase body awareness; different types of movement on swings or balls; and/or modifications to the environment.

Infant Massage: A variety of specialized strokes may be used during treatment or taught to the parent to do at home to help with calming, improving body awareness, decreasing sensitivity and, in some cases, with constipation. Infant massage strokes can be used on older children with modifications depending on the child’s activity level.

Functional Training: A very important part of treatment is teaching children age-appropriate motor skills or helping them progress with their current skills. All of the therapists have a good knowledge of developmental progression and work on skills such as rolling, crawling, pulling to stand, cruising, walking and balancing incorporating toys, games and specialized equipment.

Splint Fabrication: Many of the therapists are able to fabricate aquaplast splints for positioning at the foot and ankle or knee. This can be done in the PT Clinic during a regularly scheduled appointment.